The X-E2S promises to go one better than the X-E2. Michael Topham looks at how if differs to the original and reveals why X-E2 users have reason to be thankful
Fujifilm X-E2S review – Image quality
The X-E2S produces an identical level of detail to the X-E2, with a healthy 3200l/ph being resolved at ISO 100 and ISO 200. There’s a small drop to 3000l/ph between ISO 400 and ISO 1,600 and detail holds up very well in both raw and JPEG files at ISO 6400. The JPEGs at ISO 12,800 and above are unable to resolve the same detail as Raw files at lower sensitivities and with a drop to 2200l/ph at ISO 25,600 and ISO 51,200, these high sensitivities are best avoided.
It’s no surprise to find the dynamic range results are comparable to those recorded by other X-Series models that use the 16.3-million-pixel X-Trans CMOS sensor. There is plenty of latitude to return detail to shadow areas at lower sensitivities, with the X-E2S recording 11.5EV at ISO 200. Leverage remains above 10EV up to ISO 400, dropping to 9.3EV at ISO 800 and 8.4EV at ISO 1600. Pushing up to ISO 6400 sees a drop to 6.4EV – a similar result to the X-T1 and X-T10 at the same sensitivity setting.
The noise reduction that’s applied to JPEG files is very effective and it’s only when you shoot at ISO 6,400 and enter the realms of the expanded settings that softening becomes evident. Shoot in raw and you’ll notice luminance noise starts to creeps in at ISO 1,600, but it’s not severe enough to put you off using it and with some vigilant application of noise reduction in post it’s possible to achieve excellent results at ISO 3,200 and 6,400. Though the X-E2S can shoot a stop higher than the X-E2, images at ISO 51,200 resolve considerably less detail than the ISO 6,400 limit we’d be happy to push to when low-light conditions insist.