Hands On : The Fujifilm X20
Fujifilm have just announced their new X20 and X100s cameras. In December I had the privileged opportunity (for which I am very appreciative) to explore both cameras. Although they were both pre-production cameras the benefits of the new X-Trans sensor and EXR processor were instantly apparent.
This is not a technical review, there won’t be any graphs or charts or specification details. Instead I thought I would document my hands on experiences in everyday use of the camera. Despite being an early version of the camera I was still blown away by the improvement in both focus performance and the sheer quality of the images. Focus locking was fantastically quick and the resultant JPGs offered a remarkable depth of clarity, colour and detail. As a result, like many of you I can not wait for the final version of the Fujifilm X20 camera.
I spent two days shooting photos around Belfast and the County Down coastlines enjoying the rapid response from such a compact device. I personally think the silver version is work of art in itself. During day 1 was really getting to know the camera, I took in the famous St George’s Market and the Continental market at the City Hall.
Day 2 had to be a visit to my favourite stretch of coastline. I visit this stretch of beach every few months and every visit brings something new. I was asked to create a short video presentation talking about using the X20. Arriving at the beach early in the morning I knew we were in for a great opportunity to capture something different. Low sun, the Mourne backdrop and horses running through the sea, it was perfect.
I shot both days restricted to Aperture Priority mode and was really impressed at just how responsive even the (pre-production) X20 camera was for capturing exactly what I wanted. The metering was perfect even when shooting in low light and very changeable conditions.
The images are sharp, with remarkably little noise even when set at a high ISO. I was able to capture a sense of drama with the X20 and it fitted perfectly in my jacket pocket. I was genuinely impressed at how the camera performed. The X20 is about quality. It is about easily capturing stunning, vivid photographs with the simplicity and elegance of a classic camera.
The X20 is a beautifully crafted device equally capable of razor sharp street photography as it is for capturing detailed landscape images.
The camera is identical to the X10, small and portable and is instantly ready to capture with the turn of the lens offering 28-112mm focal lengths and a fast aperture.
The introduction of the Q button makes the camera easy to use with the settings accessible from a single button. The X20 offers a bright wide optical view finder brings the X-trans CMOS sensor to a remarkably compact and easy to use device.
As I have already said I am impressed with the X20 even with the fact my copy was a very early pre-production and the first ever firmware.
If you are looking for a serious everyday camera or are starting out with photography then the X20 is the perfect companion that will not only capture fantastic photographs but will also gives you hours of fun using it. Better still if you are upgrading from the X10 remember all your previous accessories are compatible.
Check out the Official Fujifilm X website for detailed specifications and more information. You can view more X20 photos in my flickr set here.