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Some cameras are engineered to be technical marvels, offering cutting edge technology and all the bells and whistles to shoot ultra high-end images in the right setting. And then some cameras are designed to stick with you wherever you go, to be by your side and help you capture all of the moments that would otherwise pass by while inspiring you to push your photography skills to their limits. The Fujifilm X100F, while it does contain some incredible technology, belongs very much to the latter category.
My New Favorite Camera
The X100F is lightweight mirrorless camera with a 24.3 megapixel APS-C sensor, a fixed Fujinon 23mm f/2.0 lens, a bright 3” LCD display, a hybrid electronic and optical viewfinder, and a beautiful vintage, metal design.
So why do I love the this camera so much?
There is something liberating about a shooting with a camera that inspires you to work around its limitations. Take the lens for example. With a DSLR, if you want to change your focal length, you can either shoot with a zoom lens or swap your lens with another from your kit. This certainly gives you the ability to adapt to any situation effectively but it also can take you focus away from other core aspects of photography. With the X100F, you’re stuck with a 23mm lens (35mm equivalent on a full-frame camera). While this might seem like a severe limitation, there’s a pretty simple workaround: move! Sometimes having a technological limitation inspires you to solve creative problems in ways you otherwise wouldn’t think to. Moving closer or further away from your subject is a simple example but it can also include things like adjusting your composition entirely or looking for some other interesting element in your scene to make the most of your frame.
A Low-Light Powerhouse
Creative limitations can be nice but that doesn’t mean higher-end DSLRs tower over the X100F when it comes to performance. If I’m shooting late at night with limited external light sources, I would easily take my Fuji out over my Canon 5D Mark III. The 5D is a remarkable camera in the right lighting situations but the moment I have to set my ISO above 800, the image quality diminishes rapidly. Not so with X100F. The ISO performance on the Fuji is outstanding. Being able to shoot at ISOs upwards of 12,800 can really open up options when shooting in a number of different situations. Crank up the ISO, stop down the aperture and increase the shutter speed. Now you’ve got a properly exposed image with a wider depth-of-field with limited motion blur. Something that wouldn’t be possible with the average DSLR. And yes, there is grain at higher ISOs on the X100F but it has a unusually nice aesthetic quality to it, looking more like vintage film grain than digital noise.
Color & Style
Fujifilm has been in the camera business since some of the earliest days of film and they carry their legacy with them even in their latest digital technology. Not only does the color look great straight-out-of-camera and without any filters but every Fujifilm model contains color profiles that recreate the looks of their classic films stocks. Best of all, you can shoot in RAW with the color profiles turned on and then remove them in post when you go to do your final edits. With so many ways to get an extraordinary look, either by a quick film profile or extended post-production, the Fujifilm X100F is one of the most flexible and inspiring cameras to shoot and edit with.
Those are just a few of the reasons that I’ve fallen in love with this camera but the biggest reason of all is that I can take this camera with me wherever I go and not feel the burden I would normally feel lugging a DSLR and multiple lenses. I can shoot lovely candid shots or setup the tripod and and grab something a little more staged. The versatility is amazing. I’m shooting more than ever before and that alone is pushing me to be a better photographer every day.
I love the Fujifilm X100F. I encourage you to give it a try or find a camera that inspires you to go out and be the best photographer you can be. Happy shooting!
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