Just about a week back I had a chance of having the Fuji X-Pro 1 mirrorless system along with all the 3 lenses for a weekend and during this time i managed to squeeze in a quick trip to a very lovely place bordering Karnataka and Andhrapradesh called Lepakshi and gave the camera and its 3 lenses a test run to see how well it performs with the mindset of travel photography. Having regularly shot with Canon DSLR system with bulky lenses all through the years, holding this tiny beauty and walking around the temple and around was a strange feeling indeed. As a follow up to this test, i also wanted to check the high ISO performance of this system which has got quite a lot of good acclaims worldwidee from all the people who have been testing the pre-production models since last few weeks/months. I did even share some High Iso Samples in my blog last week for people to download and see it for yourself how well it holds up to the reputation. Personally i dont want to throw in the images at 100% crop showing the centre and corner sharpness and pin pointing where the chromatic abberation is and how bad is the distortion, but to show you how well the camera performs in real world scenarios and how well it lives up to its expectation. At the end of this post i have my own list of likes and dislikes about this camera but to begin with I want to share the following set of images shot using Fuji X-Pro1 and combination of 18mm, 35mm and 60mm lenses it comes along with.
PS: None of the images are processed either in Photoshop or in any image editing software, but the JPEG out of the camera are resized and presented for your viewing pleasure. May be a bit of exposure adjustment in LR4 but minimal. Unfortunately am still waiting for the patch from Adobe for Lightroom 4 to support Fuji raw files, but until then i feel i will rather be happy playing with JPEG than using Silkypix.
Size to Performance ratio – for a system of this compact size it outperforms lot of competitions in the market.
Sharpness – X-Trans sensor delivers outstanding sharpness from edge to edge – especially when clubbed with those 3 incredibly sharp lenses.
Dynamic range – It pulls out quite a bit of information from both Shadow & Highlight region.
High ISO – This got to be the best bet of the camera – have a gut feeling it outperforms some best DSLRs with high ISO performance.
Autofocus – Having tried out few cameras in this category this one for sure has very decent AF performance.
Picture profiles in form of Provia and Velvia are really awesome to use. In camera B&W forms a really nice starting point.
Incamera built in crops like 1:1, 16:9, etc are really handy to visualise how the framing looks like on the camera.
Have heard about compatibility with Leica and Nikon lenses through dedicated mount – though have not used it, but it would be awesome to use some fantastic glasses from these companies.
(Some of these might be as a result of the pre-production firmware which am sure will be addressed in the final model)
Very poor writing speed – when shooting raw + jpeg the writing speed is noticeably slow.
The framing guidelines in the viewfinder not really accurate.
Close focusing distance not really that great.
Badly miss the histogram feature on the LCD preview of images.
Cost !!! At $2700 for body + 35f1.4 lens its not cheap (currently Canon 5D Mark ii retails for around $2999)
Lack of availability of raw converter and the filmsy Silkypix pro is so awful to use.
Video recording just has one single frame rate selection.
Manual Focus Override – the focus ring keeps on rotating without the much needed grip for the precise manual over-ride which i prefer to use.
I did face certain issue during which the camera literally hung without responding when the Fn button on top was assigned to Video and i deactivated it to continue taking photos and this was repeatable. But from my knowledge this can be corrected in firmware and should not be a serious issue.
Thats it from my end for now to say all good and bad about this system, i have one more post scheduled for sometime later this week or next week about how a similar low light situation gets rendered by XPro1 at different ISO and how well it fares between 200 and 6400 ISO. If any of you are interested in viewing or playing around with the high resolution files corresponding to the images i have posted above, feel free to drop me a comment below or get in touch with me through the contact form in this site for further conversation.