In 2011, the Fujifilm X100 took the world by storm, offering the style of a Leica M but at a more affordable price. We test its successor, the X100S, with upgraded 16.3-million-pixel sensor. Read the Fujifilm X100S review..
Fuji’s strategy for the X100S was to keep the good features of the X100, make changes according to customer requests and to evolve the technologies. On this basis, the X100S is a firm success. The elegant looks of its X100 predecessor remain. Several handling issues have been addressed, so while the X100S looks the same as the X100, it is more responsive. The new camera is quicker in its autofocusing, manual focusing, start-up and image processing. It works very well, and street photographers in particular will be pleased.
Image quality in the X100 is very good, but in the X100S it is better. With the same sensor as that used in the X-Pro1 and X-E1, the X100S resolves far more detail than its pixel count suggests. The camera may be more limited than interchangeable-lens cameras, but the wide conversion lens is a welcome high-quality addition, effectively becoming a second lens. If the 35mm focal length is a favourite, then the X100S is an excellent compact and stylish camera. In fact, it is less costly than proprietary versions of the 35mm f/1.4 lens, so it could just as well replace it in a kit bag.
Fujifilm X100S – Key features
When selected, the eye-sensor view mode automatically switches between the rear LCD and viewfinder displays when it detects that the camera is held to the face.
Controls on the top-plate include dials for shutter speed and exposure compensation, as well as a function button and shutter button with on/off switch. The on/off switch and exposure compensation dial can be knocked rather easily, so be careful to check their positions before shooting.
Close focusing is down to 10cm in macro mode, which is respectable. However, in a huge improvement over its predecessor, the X100S can focus down to 21cm when macro focusing is not selected, while the X100 can manage only 80cm.
Menu options for drive mode include single, continuous high (6fps) and low (3fps), exposure bracketing, two-frame multiple exposure, motion panorama and movie. For the movie mode there is no direct control elsewhere. In the X100, the drive mode is on the control wheel.
Whereas the X100 has a raw button here, the X100S instead features a quick menu like its compact system camera counterparts. The menu contains 16 regularly used settings for quick access.
There is a built-in flash in a central position on the front of the body, close to the lens. In the flash menu it can be set to suppressed, forced, slow synchro or used as a commander. Alternatively, an external flash can be used via the hotshoe.