The Fujifilm FinePix X100 is a compact digital camera with a fixed lens. It is comparable in size to Olympus’ PEN series mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras with a 17mm pancake lens attached. Speaking of design, this is one of the main reasons why the X100 has attracted so many vintage camera fans. The X100 adapts the good old rangefinder camera look, and the placement of the hybrid viewfinder and the aperture ring gives an even stronger vintage-touch to the camera. The X100’s body is wrapped in a synthetic black-colored leather cover and equipped with matte-silver magnesium alloy top- and bottom-panels. All the dials on the X100’s top-panel and even the small lever which is used to select between optical or electronic viewfinder are made of solid metal. Overall, the X100 is not only good-looking, but also offers plenty of buttons and dials for manual controls, enough to satisfy any enthusiast or professional photographer.
The Fujifilm FinePix X100 needs approximately 2.5 seconds from power on to the first shot, 1.5 seconds between consecutive JPEG shots, and 1.7 seconds between sequential RAW shots. Its shutter lag is at 0.5 second in bright lighting conditions and 0.8 second in dim lighting conditions. Fujifilm promised a continuous shooting speed of 5 frames per second; however, you will only be able to reach that rate when using a class 10 SDHC card. Also keep in mind that the X100 will need approximately 4 seconds more to fully write the captured images to the memory card. Overall, the X100’s operational speed didn’t impress us. It should have been faster, given its high price tag.
Despite its rather average performance, the Fujifilm FinePix X100’s image quality is impressive, just as you would expect from a US$1,200 compact digital camera. The combination of the high-quality Fujinon lens – a type of lens, which is only used on the company’s high-end products, the newly developed EXR processor, and the large APS-C CMOS sensor is responsible for the highly detailed and colorful images, while the camera’s excellent metering system ensures spot-on exposures. The X100’s noise performance is also very good, with no visible noise detected on images captured at up to ISO 1,600. If all you want is the best image quality possible, the X100 delivers.