When it works...Oh boy.. Does it ever workMy first few hours with the Fuji X-E1
Today may have been the longest day ever, or at least seemed that way, well after I tracked the package that UPS was supposed to deliver today.
When I arrived home from a long day of work, I was met at the door with the glorious sight of a good ole B&H shipping box. I was gleeful to put it lightly! I just couldn't wait to get inside and rip open the packaging!!!Sexy-One (Fuji X-E1)Lust At First Sight
After cutting open the plain shipping carton, I was taken aback at the beautiful packaging both the X-E1 body and the 35mm 1.4 were contained inside of! The black boxes are very reminiscent of mid-late 2000's apple packaging. The lens box is very
well padded and even has a magnetic closure. Thumbs-up to Fuji for the excellent presentation and pride they obviously take in their product.Getting Her Clothes Off
Thankfully that's not where the beauty stopped. The X-E1 is
the most beautiful [digital] camera I have held in my hands to date. The retro styling is wonderful! But, there is something that sets it apart from all other "retro" style cameras on the market (with the exclusion of the X-Pro1 and Leica). The physical dials for shutter speed and aperture add not only a certain aesthetic, but a feeling of amazing build quality.Feeling Her Up
After picking the X-E1 up, it's hard not to notice exactly how lightweight this thing is, especially without a lens attached. Don't get me wrong, the camera feels
great. It has a certain feeling of quality that not even my D800 has. It's metal parts get cold, unlike most cameras that are plastic-y and don't hold a temperature for long, it stays cool for a while. For some reason, that just makes me smile. All the dials have a very crisp click to them. The buttons have a very distinct click to them, unlike on my D800 that just move when pressed (haven't decided which I prefer).Attachments
I took advantage of the Fuji instant lens rebate package deal thingy
or whatever you want to call it. So, this X-E1 arrived with a 35mm 1.4 and it may even be more beautiful than the camera body itself. That's quite a feat. When I removed the lens from the box, I couldn't help but notice how small it was, but upon mounting it to the X-E1 the two look like they should be attached forever. The lens gets cold just like the X-E1 and feels even more solid. It feels like it will last me for a long time, and feels mostly made of metal, but that could just be the outer shell. I was quite surprised when I noticed that the lens hood was comprised mostly of metal!!!Getting Her Out In Public
I was lucky enough to get my X-E1 the night of a friend's band's show, so I figured I would go test it out.
When I got to the venue I was immediately stopped by another photographer there and they wanted to know what I had. They couldn't stop exclaiming how beautiful the camera was! My E-X1 quickly became the center of attention for a small group near the entrance and they were all surprised when they saw the LCD on the back. As, they were all certain that it was a film camera "because of all the dials".Getting Intimate
The X-E1 is incredibly
easy to use. The dials on the body and lens are like a dream to set and use. The function button is automatically set to adjust ISO, and I wouldn't have it any other way at least not yet
. Everything is set up intuitively and the handling of the camera is phenomenal. Going Deep
Ok, so this is where the romanticism ends. While shooting the concert I noticed a few shortcomings of this otherwise (so far) great camera.
1. The EVF
: While I know, this setting, a small dark bar, would be a challenge for any EVF, I would've liked to see a higher refresh rate. Sometimes when the you're adjusting settings or have a menu up the screen behind is just a blur of colors. Sometimes it makes you second guess focus and that slows things down. Definitely not a deal-breaker, but it could definitely be better.
: This is where the title of my post comes from. Low light focus leaves something to be desired. Again, I took this thing to the worst of situations to test it out, so I'm trying not to be too
critical. Focus when it grabs is dead on accurate and scary sharp. But, I noticed a lot of searching when I was trying to grab focus on semi-stationary musicians. It did improve as the night went on, or maybe I just started to get used to the camera and began doing things right (read: the way the X-E1 wants me to).Overall
I am very impressed with this little camera, and am very excited about our long relationship. The low-light capabilities are outstanding as in the photo below (shot at ISO2000). I am optimistic that Fuji will continue to release consistent and helpful firmware updates for the body and lenses alike. I will post an update when I get the camera out during the day and on the streets!
Hope everyone finds this review helpful! I will be glad to answer any questions you have for me!!
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