The XF10 reuses the sensor from the X-T100 and the lens from the X70, so both of these things are somewhat known quantities. I talked about the lens in my X70 review, but I have some new thoughts with its performance on the XF10.
The 18.5mm f/2.8 lens used on the XF10 is exceptionally slim, and that can come with some compromises. However, for the most part, the lens is quite nice.
With regards to image sharpness, the XF10 lens will vary somewhat depending on your subject. For many subjects, you will notice very sharp results across the frame, even into the corners. On flatter subjects, you’ll notice some softening of detail at the edges and corners of the frame, and that’s because the lens on the XF10 shows quite a bit of field curvature. When focused far away, the edges of the frame will be best focused at around 5-10 feet from the camera. Focusing at infinity with all distant detail will show softer edges when focused at the center, or a softer center with sharp edges when focused using the edges. However, for most natural compositions, there is some closer detail near the edges, especially indoors, and for these subjects, the field curvature actually helps improve the overall image quality.
When I first tested the XF10, I was a bit disappointed with the degree of field curvature, but in actual use over the next week or two, I found that images were quite sharp most everywhere, and that a lot of subjects actually benefited from this quirk. It’s definitely something to be aware of when you’re shooting, but it’s not a major issue in my experience.
The lens can also focus quite close up, and sharpness in the center of the frame stays at a very high level, though the corners become rather terrible when shooting at very close focus distances.
The lens begins sharp across most of the frame at f/2.8, but the edges and corners are definitely softer here, even when accounting for field curvature. Stopping down to f/5.6 or so brings the edge sharpness up considerably and yields very nice results across the image frame.
The 18.5mm f/2.8 lens on the XF10 isn’t going to blow away backgrounds unless focused very close up, but the bokeh produced by the camera is quite nice. Blur discs are relatively even and generally round, and there’s very little nervousness to the blur as well. In all, I found the rendering to be quite pleasing. There can be a touch of a bright ring outline on specular highlights, but it’s not overly distracting.
Color, Contrast and Aberrations
The lens on the XF10 produces images with good contrast straight from wide open. The color profile is perhaps a bit muted, but with Fuji’s excellent color science, good color results can easily be had.
Chromatic aberration is fairly well controlled, with a touch of lateral CA visible and easily corrected, and a touch of purple fringing can present in high contrast areas from time to time, but overall performance here is quite good for such a flat lens. Flare resistance is good, but not exceptional. There is a bit of pincushion distortion that can be seen in some shots with very straight lines, but is otherwise fine.
The XF10 has the same 24-megapixel sensor as the recent X-T100. It’s a sensor that is based on X-Trans III sensor used in the X-T2 and X-T20, but uses the more standard Bayer color filter array, rather than Fujifilm’s signature X-Trans array. The result is a sensor that has similar levels of detail, but without some of the foliage artifacts that can be caused by the X-Trans color filter array. However, it can show some moire in the right circumstances and has a different noise profile.
If you’ve used Fujifilm’s third generation processors, either in the X-T100, or even their X-Trans siblings in the X-T2 or X-T20, you’ve got a good idea of the dynamic range available from the XF10 sensor. The XF10 does a very nice job maintaining detail and the shadows while providing good highlight control as well. While the range displayed on the rear LCD is somewhat limited, when bringing RAW files into play, there is about a stop and a half of highlight recovery available and a lot of detail that can be pushed out of the shadows, though at the expense of noise. While it won’t match a modern full-frame body for dynamic range, it is right in line with other APS-C cameras in use today.
The shot below shows some of the excellent dynamic range of the XF10 sensor. While overcast conditions typically do not pose too much of a problem for any modern camera, this framing utilized an arched hallway as a window to the main scene, which was unlit and rather dark. I pushed the shadows here around two stops, while pulling back the brightest highlights in the clouds to the left of the volcano in the distance. The file handled these adjustments with ease, bringing plenty of detail in to the white arches, and all the cloud detail in the clouds.
Detail and Noise
The Bayer filter array on the XF10 sensor has an effect on both the detail levels and the perceived noise when compared to its X-Trans brethren. The detail of the sensor in most situations is effectively identical to what is available on something like the X-T2. However, the XF10’s Bayer array doesn’t suffer from the false detail ‘watercolor effect’ that can sometimes occur on Fuji’s X-Trans sensors when shooting foliage or grass.
Noise levels are fairly good and are in line with most APS-C sensors from 2018. However, it does show more noise overall than the X-Trans sensors of the same technology, especially color noise. Images are quite clean at lower ISOs, though even at ISO 200, there can be some very light luminance noise when adding contrast to an image. Noise remains well in control through ISO 1600, and ISO 3200 is very usable. ISO 6400 can be used with proper noise reduction, even for print, but ISO 12,800 gets to be a bit much for anything other than web use.
Overall image quality of the XF10 is on a high level, though with the caveats that I’ve discussed above. It’s not a perfect lens, and the sensor, while good, doesn’t break any new ground either. However, when you have this level of image quality in a super tiny camera, it makes for a great option for travel, and I was very pleased with the images I was able to get out of the XF10.
17 thoughts on “Review: Fujifilm XF10”
This is a very good review as far as I can see based on my experience with the camera. Thank you, Jordan! The XF10 is not perfect but very good. Compared with Ricoh GR it stands quite well. So people who use other Fuji cameras might like a small street camera with good handling, two special settings for snap shot and a familiar menu structure.
Hello! Thanks for the review! Can you please write something about the manual focus using the front ring? Because I want to know if at anytime I have trouble with the auto focus I can rely on the manual focus and use something like focus peaking. Thanks for the attention!
Using manual focus with the front ring works OK, but the feel is not great compared to any decent lens. It’s doable, but not a preferred way to operate.
I’ve just bought one of these as a small “walkabout ” camera to complement my X-T20 bodies and lenses. I thought it might be a bit too wide for my liking but having found out about the digital teleconverter which changes the focal length to 35 or 50mm (equivalent) (I can’t see any loss of quality) it’s growing on me and I’ve been taking it everywhere, especially on my dog walks. As Peter Krumme says, not perfect but good. Incidentally, I use the front ring to change the focal lengths.
I use the fujifilm exactly as you use it, including the converter. I also use it for a walk with the dog. 🙂 I also don’t miss the viewfinder, rather it would bother me.
jordan , its cosinaphile from ep1 dot net and the other m43 forums
i think you site has evolved toward excellence ,,, and the review here is amng the best anywhere
i remember you shooting back about 9 r 10 years ago ,,, and it was extremely average and boring
well … your shot of late have been excellent …. youve learned well and cultivated an eye to formal forces
and visual needs …
congrats and keep up the great work
paul in nyc
Thanks for the kind words, Paul. Good to hear from you!
I ordered one today. At this moment in Belgium (I live in the Netherlands) the gold/brown ones are being sold for 329 euro. The black ones are sold for 439 euro.
No idea why the gold ones are so cheap at that particular storen.
Anyway, I own a Ricoh GR which I really like, but not the color pics.
I don’t like 35 mm and never heard of the Fuji XF10.
The X70 is to big for me.
I downloaded soms raw files from the Fuji to practise to see if it was hard to handle but I think I can get used to it. To camera’s this ligt wont’t bother me but as soon as I have it, I’am gonna try to look the Fuji like the Ricoh for black and white in post processing. If I succeed, this will be my only camera 🙂
Thank you for your review. I always wanted a Fuji someday for the amazing warm red and brown colors that no matter how strong they are, don’t look ugly oversaturated but instead makes me want to visit the place on the picture 😀
I’ve got him. Not happy so far.
Tried all the settings and thislike them all.
Nothing I’ve seen in samples.
Very slow shutter. After you’ve already pushed the button, you have to wait a short while before you are allowed to move.
In automatic mode, it doesn’t care choosing shutter speed of 1/20 instead of including the flash.
Couldn’t make a single shot that was better looking then pictures of my Samsung S10 which is not exactly the best Samsung cam.
Tomorrow I will shoot some raws and if that doesn’t work, I’ll return it.
Have you returned it?
The XF10 is the one camera I can’t get a final verdict of.
It could be the perfect beater-cam, sth you don’t have to worry much about.
It seems to be discontinued, prices are low, but an updated version might be
around that finally addresses all of the Xf10s shortcomings.
I received my XF10 a couple of days ago. Have been on the side for some time, contemplating the XF10 vs. GRiii and comparing to my aging RX100ii, for a very portable / pocketable camera.
I am happy with my new XF10 so far and the upgrade in image quality is huge as compared to the RX100 – sharpness, low light capability and color quality. There are always things that could be better, but if you know what you are doing and plan your work flow around the features of the camera it is perfectly fine. AF is no problem here, just set the spot size suitable and aim for contrast.
Overall, a great camera and worth its price so far.
The Swipe commands on screen work TERRIBLE, sometimes swipe 5x or more for it to work depend on what direction….sick of this…may sell it
Have you got a screen saver on it?
I have theXF10 and use it daily, I feel it’s image quality is close to my X100V. A very beautiful image tinybeast
I run a blog and feature it alongside my V
What a surprise that I have taken with this little camera, which looks like toys.
I can’t believe how it has so many negative reviews.
The camera is a beast in terms of sharpness (I have had many cameras and many lenses of many many hundreds of dollars and in its focal range it has no paragon).
Its size makes it really portable, as it fits in the pocket of a jeans.
the focus, so feared by many, is not a problem, if you take a small point of focus and logically the appropriate speed so that the photos do not come out jittery.
noise control at high isolates is also excellent.
the controls may be the least agile of this camera but you get used to it quickly.
the battery lasts a long time.
the snap mode is really effective and takes you to the Ricoh GR.
IMHO the XF10 outperforms the Ricoh GRIII in sharpness by far.
Also you forget about the dust problem.
If you find it in the second-hand market, don’t hesitate, be it black or gold, buy it because if you don’t, others will.
I’ve just bough a second hand one of these. It has the latest firm ware so has a faster focussing time than the original. It is a camera that takes a bit of study and will require different settings for a variety of shooting styles, but when it works it really works! Your shots are great!
So I decided to sell my XF10 in December last year and regrettably that wa a mistake!
I missed it so much a friend had one so I got it from her for the bargain price of £200 and it’s mint.
Aaaah back to the little powerhouse again