Sunday, February 3, 2013

Fuji XE-1 w/ XF35mm f1.4

Just got the smaller Fuji XE-1. On the rangefinder forums most people (and Sean Reid) like the X Pro-1 the best. Better build quality. Optical viewfinder choice. I haven't had either very long but I must say I prefer the smaller camera at first blush. It fits my hand nicely, is a bit smaller and lighter and the newer firmware that improved the focus of the XP1 makes the XE1 seem quite quick.

I also haven't had a true Fuji XF lens until now. I've been using an adapter and M mount lenses. They work fine and the output is good but of course it's all manual by increasing the size of the image and focusing by sight. Pressing the camera's horizontal selection dial will automatically bring up the magnified viewing image to use to focus by sight. No focus peaking provided (electronic highlighting of the in focus area), you just watch and best guess at true in focus area you want.

Early reviews said the XP1 was slow to focus. After the XE1 and firmware updates, the camera is much better and I think quite fast enough for what it is.

The 35mm f1.4 was recommended to me (virtually) by many users of the XP1. I don't have any other lenses to compare but I really like the 53mm crop factor lens and in fact the XE1 w/ the XF lens is a sweet combo.

Here's a couple of shots I put together to simulate using a Leica M from 1953. The in focus areas are too sharp to be film but the OOF rings fairly true.

 So where's the out of camera? The 2nd shot I framed in my mind as almost a medium format shot. I went vertical and shot three side by side and pasted them together.
 The 53mm effective range lens isn't real good for landscapes but I'm showing this to point out you can put together a few shots to give yourself more coverage. I did try to back up and re-frame it but further away didn't give me the shot I wanted even though it would take in more real estate. The above shot is (3) jpegs out of camera blended together by Photoshop.

I also wanted to shoot wide open in normal daylight to see if 1/4000 is quick enough and pretty much, it is. The X100 only shot up to 1/1000 (leaf shutter) and had a built in ND filter. The XP1 and XE1 both has focal plane shutters which go up to 1/4000. Pretty smooth. A real ND filter would give you more choices, of course but the camera is fast enough to use a fast lens without one, most of the time.

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