The Fujifilm X-Pro1 for Street Photography

The Fujifilm X-Pro1 for Street Photography

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Fujifilm X-Pro1 with the XF18mm

Introduction

Dear Streethunters.net Readers,

It is time for another camera review for Street Photography! This will be the 3rd camera review we have done so far. In the past we have written a review about the wonderful Ricoh GR for Street Photography and the powerful Canon 6D for Street Photography. Both those reviews are highly recommended because they are from a Street Photographer’s perspective.

Today, we will review a camera that was talked about by many when it first hit the market. Some praised it for what it had to offer, others gave it a serious beating because of its really bad AF performance. There are numerous reviews about it all over the web, and countless YouTube videos and tutorials on how to get best results from its focusing system. Despite any quirks this camera may have it is still a wonderful work of engineering that produces some of the most amazing files one could hope for. Today we review the Fujifilm X-Pro1.

Fujifilm X-Pro1

The Fujifilm X-Pro1 for Street Photography

As with the previous reviews we wrote, this review is going to be from a Street Photographer’s perspective. It is a completely personal point of view. I am not a camera expert – anything I know about cameras is from personal experience, as I am not a professional camera guru. So, what you will read below is purely my personal opinion about the Fujifilm X-Pro1 for Street Photography and nothing more.

ATTENTION: This is going to be a review about the camera body only, not the camera body and the XF18mm F2.0 R lens that you see attached in the photos. I plan to write separate reviews about X-Mount lenses in the future.

If you would like me to add anything to this post after you have read it, please feel free to make suggestions in the comments at the bottom of the page. During this review I will discuss the X-Pro1’s size & weight (portability), build quality, handling, performance, features, low light performance, image quality and value.

Size & Weight = Portability

Fujifilm X-Pro1 back

The Fujifilm X-Pro1’s dimensions are 139.5 x 81.8 x 42.5 mm  (5.5 x 3.2 x 1.7 in.) and weighs 450g (15.9 oz.) including the battery and the memory card. So it isn’t as small as a compact camera but not as big as a DLSR. Surprisingly, when I held it in my hands for the first time I remember that it felt much smaller than what I thought it would when I looked at it in magazines and on various online reviews. In the streets it is unobtrusive and when it is noticed it is usually mistaken for a vintage film camera. Particularly when equipped with a small lens, such as the XF27mm F2.8 pancake or the XF18mm F2.0 R, the Fujifilm X-Pro1 manages to pass unnoticed, making Street Photography a pleasant experience.

The Fuji’s weight isn’t annoying and sometimes when I am totally in the zone, I don’t feel it hanging from my neck at all! Fortunately Fujifilm does provide a moderately good kit camera strap that is quite comfortable. When I am not using the X-Pro1 it lives inside my Camslinger around my waist. Its weight doesn’t annoy me, unless I have to run.

Rating: 8

Build quality

Fujifilm X-Pro1 top view

Fujifilm X-Pro1 top dials

The Fujifilm X-Pro1 body is made from die-cast aluminium alloy. The dials on the top part of the camera body are metal and feel perfect to the touch. They have a lovely mechanical feel just as I like and are not flimsy. The buttons and dials on the back are of very high quality plastic that make the camera feel like an expensive piece of kit. The optical viewfinder glass is amazingly sharp and of the highest quality. The X-Mount itself is made from metal. I couldn’t find what kind of metal, but it feels very sturdy when I attach lenses to it. The LCD is a 3.0-inch RGBW (White) LCD monitor with 1,230,000 dots that offers 100% coverage. The LCD screen is of good quality. Overall, the Fujifilm X-Pro1 is a professionally built camera that feels like it can take some heat if needed.

Rating: 9

Handling

Fujifilm X-Pro1 rear view

Fujifilm X-Pro1 top dials

Fujifilm X-Pro1 buttons on the rear

One of the reasons why the Fujifilm X-Pro1 became so widely talked about when it first came out in 2012 was because it handled well. This camera is such a breeze to use, especially for someone with a basic understanding of how a camera works. For anyone with previous experiences with older film cameras, the layout of the X-Pro1 becomes instantly recognisable and feels very familiar. Personally I felt right at home once I got my hands on it and set it up to my liking. Now, I hit the streets with it and don’t have to use a single menu. I control my camera using the top dials and the aperture ring on the lens, while my LCD is constantly turned off, unless of course I need to compose from a rat’s eye view point. I have used many cameras in my life, but for me, this one is just excellent.

Rating: 10

Performance

Glamour Queen shot by Spyros Papaspyropoulos

The X-Pro1 has a large X-Trans 16MP CMOS sensor with primary colour filter. Image quality will be looked at in detail further on. When the Fujifilm X-Pro1 was first released it felt as if it was a beta version camera. Even though its IQ was amazing and its handling was great, it lacked good AF, to the point where it was actually pretty annoying. But as you might have heard before, Fujifilm really listens to its customers and since then has released many major firmware upgrades that have literally transformed the X-Pro1 into a totally new and different camera! The AF speed has improved dramatically and various features have been added that were missing. However, even after the upgrades one can’t claim that the AF is lightning fast, but it is fast enough to work on the Streets with. Personally, I use AF rarely. I use zone focusing or hyperfocal distance 90% of the time.

By using zone focusing I know what will be in focus and I save tremendous time when clicking the shutter button. As a standard I usually mount the XF18mm F2.0 R (27mm equivalent) lens to my X-Pro1 and set the aperture to f8.0. I then chose a focus distance of 2m, that gives me a hyperfocal distance from 1m to infinity. That way I am sure that everything I capture from 1m onwards is always in focus. As I did with the Ricoh GR, I set my shutter speed manually and set ISO to auto. That way I always get a good exposure while at the same time I control my camera myself. For performance I will rate the X-Pro1 with a 7 because of the Auto Focusing it has, even though for me personally this isn’t important at all.

Rating: 7

Features

Fujifilm X-Pro1 menus

The Fujifilm X-Pro1 is a camera with a fair amount of features that makes it ideal for most types of photography. For Street Photography its feature set is more than enough. It offers 7 custom presets that can be setup according to one’s needs, it has exposure compensation, exposure and focus lock options, and a rich and comprehensive menu filled with interesting options. One particular feature makes it stand out amongst others is that of the hybrid viewfinder that lets a Street Photographer switch between an EVF (Electronic View Finder) and a highly sophisticated OVF (Optical View Finder). The OVF is an engineering marvel. All the information that one would ever need is overlaid over the OVF just like in the X100s. According to Fujifilm the Optical viewfinder is a Reverse Galilean viewfinder with electronic bright frame display and Magnifications of 0.37x and 0.6x, while the Electronic viewfinder is a 0.47-in. colour LCD viewfinder display with approximately 1,440,000 dots making it bright enough for an enjoyable experience. I noticed that the EVF does have a slight lag when in low light especially, but the OVF is a truly fantastic experience once mastered. The camera has no WiFi and no Tilting screen. It has no weather sealing and does buffer when shooting many photos one after the other, but as a Street Photographer’s tool, it is more than capable to face any surprise the street might happen to throw at it. I would like to give it a better rating than 7, but because it lacks some really standard modern features, that is what it will get.

Rating: 7

Low light performance

Pondering man shot by Spyros Papaspyropoulos

There is not really much I can say about the Low Light Performance of the Fujifilm X-Pro1 other than it rocks! Even at 6400 ISO, RAW files are easily usable and JPG files look great. I have never found myself in a situation where the X-Trans 16MP CMOS sensor couldn’t cope in low light and believe me I shoot night Street Photography most of the time. The image noise even in colour looks very filmic and is pleasing to the eye. There are no noticeable unpleasant image artefacts, at least not to a point where the images are considered of low quality. Just crank that ISO up to 6400 and shoot at anything wider than f 2.8 and you are good to go! When shooting in RAW the X-Pro1 will go all the way up to 6400 ISO, whereas in JPG mode the camera can go up to 25600. I recommend shooting at up to 6400 ISO in both formats. Compared to the Ricoh GR that also has an APS-C sensor, it performs better in low light.

Rating: 8

Image quality

Open door shot by Spyros Papaspyropoulos

The X-Trans 16MP CMOS APS-C sensor of the Fujifilm X-Pro1 offers fantastic Image Quality that can only be rivalled by the newer generation X-Trans II APS-C sensor in my opinion. I have shot with many APS-C cameras, but I have never experienced the quality that the X-Trans sensor delivers before. Colours are fantastic and details of the photographs produced are stunning. Also, the X-Trans 16MP CMOS sensor produces lovely filmic results that make the images pop as if they were shot with a full frame camera. Pair that with the amazing Fujifilm glass that is of the highest quality and you get stunning results. As an APS-C sized sensor camera I award the X-Pro1 with 10 points.

Rating: 10

Value

Fujifilm X-Pro1 top view

When the X-Pro1 first came out in 2012 it wasn’t the best camera at its price range. Considering the features it initially shipped with and the AF performance it had it was overpriced. Yes, the Image Quality has always been of the highest quality and the build of the camera is professional grade, but the features were lacking and that Auto Focus was a true test of character for some. Fast forward to today though, after 3 years and 14 Firmware updates (YES 14!), the X-Pro1 is a brand new camera that has nothing to envy from its rivals. But that isn’t all. The price of the X-Pro1 body is quite low and can be found new for as low as €450 on some websites! I know this is a 3 year old camera, but after all the updates it feels like a bargain to me.

Rating: 9

Conclusion
Fujifilm X-Pro1

The Fujifilm X-Pro1 is a Street Photographer’s camera. It makes fantastic images of the highest quality, performs great in low light, handles like a dream, it is unobtrusive and comes at a really good price. It is comfortable and it sports an amazing Hybrid Viewfinder. Its Auto Focus might not be the best in the world, but when shooting in the Streets it is almost always better to shoot using zone focusing or hyperfocal distance so for me the average AF speed is not a real issue.

Its build quality is professional grade and its features are more than enough to satisfy even the most demanding Street Photographer. When used properly the X-Pro1 battery can last for hours on end. I use it with the OVF only and the LCD screen turned off. I get a whole 16GB SD card of RAW and JPG files out of one battery charge. The LCD and EVF are the real battery drainers, so if those are not used, the camera can last for hours.

Would I recommend it? Yes I would! It is a 3 year old camera body packed with 2015 software that now comes at a very affordable price and still delivers one of the best (if not the best) APS-C Image Quality results on the market. I purchased my Fujifilm X-Pro1 in January for under €900 including the XF27mm and the XF18mm lenses that cost somewhere around €900 together. This package still exists on Amazon.co.uk. It is a Fujifilm UK special offer. I will link to it below.

If you want to know more about the Fujifilm X-Pro1, just ask me in the comments. If you would like me to share with you my personal settings, I will gladly do so. All you have to do is ask and I will deliver.

Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

Do you want to buy the Fujifilm X-Pro1?

As you know we are affiliated with Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk, so if you would like to buy the Fujifilm X-Pro1 from one of these e-shops, please support us by using the links provided below:

Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

Review overview
Size & Weight - 8
Build Quality - 9
Handling - 10
Performance - 7
Features - 7
Low Light Performance - 8
Image Quality - 10
Value - 9
Spyros Papaspyropoulos is passionate about Photography, especially Street Photography. Because of that passion he considers himself a Street Photographer. If you would like to see his work you can also visit his Street Hunters Profile. He is co-founder of Street Hunters.

85 COMMENTS

  1. The thumb grip you have on your camera also allows you to use the strobe. My doesn’t and I would like to get one myself. Do you remember the manufacturer’s name? Thanks.

    PS: I use my XPRO-1 with the 27mm f2.8 pancake. Not as fast as the 18mm or have its depth-of-field but it’s still a very fun street setup.

  2. I abandoned my X-Pro1 – one of the very first batch – since it never could fill in the role of the all-round shooter style Leica M9 – I had expected it to be. Neither was I impressed by the ‘professional grade’ manufacturing quality (I suffered from initial quality issues). I replaced it a few months ago – after very up and down bouncing emotions – by the X-T1. No, I was not liking the newer X-T1 so much (it’s just a faux DSLR) but Fuji’s IQ and colors were seducing, while I had invested money into the glass. I think we can easily agree that the X-Pro1 with the X-T1’s internals & firmware but retaining the original X-Pro1 properties (say the X-Pro1s that never saw the light) would have written completely different lines in the Fuji X history. The X-T1 is a stable, much more manageable product with a decent working AF and not so compromised by low light (the X-Pro1 ‘performs great’… I really don’t understand what you mean by that…?). I also deals a lot better with complex light situations than the X-Pro1 – which got a very weird camera under particular lighting. Yes, I like the X-T1 a lot more from an operational side but still, nothing in the current Fuji X-range can and will replace my 30 years of positive Nikon F experience. The X-T1 isn’ perfect either (I hope the new firmware will bring a major change to that) and there is still that battery-eating dilemma – contradicting with this travel/lightweight mantra some need to exclaim all the time. And the X-T1’s wifi features are a poorly implemented gimmick. The collaboration of any Fuji with flashes remains odd and there is still no credible pro-solution even in the rumors. What I also have to say, at the end I also liked the X-Pro1 images more – there’s something different I cannot explain. The X-Pro1 was able to let me forget a 35mm sensor with a pleasing, particular rendering, the X-T1 doesn’t play the same trick for me – it’s harsher, less organic.That might of course be my personal perception since I wasn’t able to perform a true comparison, but still. To cut a long story short…I can still get emotional about some of the refreshing ideas baked into this damned X-series MILC concept, the glass is very OK and Fujifilm seems to be very improvement driven… but currently, from technical point of view they are lagging a fair bit behind everything competition is doing and I’m stilling missing the faith to use this X-T1 as a low light event shooter (it has proven for me that it can’t do that mission in the same way I’m used from Nikon). My 2c remains Fujifilm really need to take the X-series to the next level, by releasing a compelling, higher resolution and much, much higher ISO capable sensor concept, finally surprise the market with a full bullit-proof AF implementation & on-sensor stabilization like Olympus & Sony have and most of all, develop a credible pro-flash accessory line. Oh yes, one more thing: the fiddly RAW support, please let us forget this mind-bogging software hassle forever, Fujifilm.

    • Hello EJPB and many thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences about the Fujifilm X-Pro1. I noticed that you have used that camera for much more than street photography, including events. I presume you have used it for other gigs too. Personally, I only use it for street photography and I have to say that I am more than pleased with the results I am getting. I suppose if I had other needs for it I might have discovered things that may have led me to the same conclusions as you, but from a street shooters point of view, I can’t see any fault in it. As for your wish of a Fujifilm X Camera that will have a full bullit-proof AF implementation & on-sensor stabilization like Olympus & Sony, I agree and hope that the much awaited X-Pro2 will have at least the fist of the two. Again, thanks for your comment and for taking the time to read the review 🙂
      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

  3. Hi Spyros,
    Excellent article, great review, as always. This review can’t come in a better moment for me.

    I was considering an upgrade for my NEX-6, and considering at first the a6000 with its better IQ and improved menus. To improve my collection the purchase of the a6000 can allow me to put beside it an used high-end point and shoot, maybe a Ricoh GR, maybe an RX100II, or a Coolpix A.

    But searching further, I stumbled upon the x-series and my street dreams camera: the X-t1. It has all the things that matter to me. All the dials and wheels to make things more intuitive and fast, the tiltable screen (I shoot most photos from the hip), the electronic shutter. Add to this all the advantages of the x-trans family: it has a great APS-C sensor without AA filter, great selection of lenses and the best customer support through the great firmware updates (what I miss from sony is the lack of support. The new menu implementation in the new alpha series could be given also to nex users, but to have it I MUST buy another camera).

    I don’t tell I’m not satisfied by the Nex-6, but I began to think I need a camera that doesn’t fight me to take pictures, the menus and the lack of aperture ring on the native lenses is my main concern. For this reason I shoot most with manual focus lenses with adapters (I love my voigtlander 25mm f/4) with them I can do zone focusing, a thing I can’t do with the native lenses. I’d like to have a camera that encourage me to take pictures, that when I use it I’ll enjoy going outside in the street and shoot.

    But the X-t1 is very expensive. I’ve also considered an A7 used, but the lack of an electronic shutter (it’s loud!) and the same problem of the aperture ring on native lenses make me stay away from the big jump to the full frame universe.

    Then I read your review, and my question is: maybe the x-pro1 can be the camera to begin to switch from a system to another? Will I enjoy it despite the lack of tiltable screen? The slow focus doesn’t bother me, since I use mostly zone focusing, that is even more fast than autofocus if you can master the technique.

    I’m not a fanboy, I want only shoot pics and enjoy doing it. All your suggestions are welcome.

    Thank you for your article and sorry for the long reply.

    • Thank you very much for your detailed reply Paolo! I totally get what you are saying about the NEX-6. I used to own that camera for 2 years but even though it performed wonderfully, it felt as if that was making the photos and not me. I needed a camera that was more easy to handle. I did a lot of research and I changed many ideas before I ended up with the X-Pro1. Like you, I zone focus so the moderate AF doesn’t concern me at all. Actually I have used the AF for Theatre (I shoot Theatre gigs) and it performed just great! No problems at all. I have the latest firmware installed of course. Anyway, if you are looking for a very well built camera that produces great images, is a pleasure to use, has fantastic handling and you zone focus, then look no further. Oh and one more thing, the X-Pro1 has a focus distance indicator so you can measure focus distance with ease. Even if lenses don’t have indicators on them.

  4. i am lucky enough to own both the X-T1 and the X-Pro1 and the 18mm, 27mm, 35mm and 56mm glass and X20 flash. I tend to take the X-Pro1 everywhere, is it perfect? Hell No, but its idiosycrancys are for me “character”, and the IQ? well I find it amazing, I really like the X-T1 but I love the X-Pro1. Its just satisfying to shoot with, it feels like a real “tool”, not a toy. to make a great image takes hard work but it’s so satisfying.
    In years to come it will likely be considered a classic and be very sought after

    • Thank you for sharing your story with us Mick! I have heard that about the X-Pro1 sensor before. I also get a filmic style feeling when looking at my photos. I guess that is what you mean. I am happy you like the X-Pro1 because it is a great camera that not many appreciate. As for your last comment, I couldn’t agree more! I am never selling mine!

    • The X-Pro1 EVF is the 1st gen one, not as good as the one in the XE-2. The XE-2 doesn’t have the additional OVF which in my opinion is an engineering marvel. Also, the build quality of the XE series cameras isn’t as good as the full metal body X-Pro1 build that has a finish and quality that give it that professional look. It depends what you want. Also, if I am not mistaken, the XE-2 has the newer X-Trans sensor with a less organic look but slightly better low light performance.

  5. Hi Spyros, thanks for the great article! I bought my X-Pro1 last year, I got the deal with the 2 free lenses then bought the 35mm too (an awesome lens!!), I already owned the X100s but I now find I’m using the X-Pro1 more than the X100s. I just Love the Fuji X products & plan to get the XT1 soon but for anyone who wants to get into FujiX they would be crazy not to get the X-Pro1 deal with the 18 & 27mm lenses, it’s even cheaper now than when I bought it & you’d effectively be buying 2 lenses and getting free camera, it’s an incredible deal!
    Back in the film days I had a Fuji ST605N which I Loved (I still have the camera but not used it for 25 years) I think that’s who I like the X cameras so much, they take me back to that era with the manual shutter speed & aperture which I feel so much more at home with.
    I’ve not yet tried zone focusing but it’s something I’d like to have a go with so if you could please let me know what your settings are I will try it out.
    Thanks again for all you do, I’m sure I can speak for everyone when I say it’s much appreciated & very informative.
    Yamas!
    Gary.

    • Hello Gary! Yamas!
      Thank you so much for your comment and for sharing your thoughts and experiences with the Streethunters.net Readers. That bundle is TOP value for money, especially when you think what you are getting for what you spend. If you just buy the XF18mm and the XF27mm on their own, they cost more than the bundle! So, yeah, it is a great deal and the overall kit is TOP quality.
      As for my zone settings, it depends on the light and lens. With my XF18mm which is my most used lens, when the Greek sun is burning hot, I use f11, 1/1000th, auto ISO and focus distance at 2m. That gets me everything in focus from 1m to infinity.
      Cheers!

  6. Spyros, fabulous article and so true even to this day. The XPro1 may be a 2012 camera but it is so ‘now’ that I can’t pull myself away from it!
    I started with an X20 to make sure Fuji was right for me. From there I used the X100S for 10months before grabbing the XPro1 & XT1 with 18mm, 27mm, 35mm, 60mm and 18-55mm.
    The XPro1 is incredible. I choose it every time OVER my XT1. I love the feel of it in my hands, the images it takes.
    http://flickr.com/photos/valbanese

    • Hello Vincent. I am glad you enjoyed the post and happy that you like the X-Pro1 as much as I do. It is a photographer’s camera and perfect for the streets. I use it all the time with the 18mm which I adore, but more about that on another post.
      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

  7. I had a Fuji X100s, with the X-trans sensor, and hated it: there was a strong tendency (even with noise reduction dialled down as low as the camera allowed) for faces – particularly Caucasian faces that were medium or smaller in the frame – to be rendered with a horrible ‘plasticky’ effect. That’s something that never gets mentioned in reviews, but it’s a serious problem.

    • Hi John,

      Thanks for the extra info. I suppose if you reduce noise as low as it goes you will get that effect, especially if you are shooting high ISO at the same time. I think that is something that most cameras will do. Personally I shoot RAW not JPG so all the NR is done post processing in LightRoom, so for me and all RAW shooters this is a non issue. Additionally I would like to add that the X-Pro1 doesn’t use the same image sensor as the X100s. The X100s uses the newer generation X-Trans CMOS II sensor that renders images differently. The X-Pro1 uses the original first generation X-Trans CMOS sensor.

      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

        • Just found this browsing around – just to say I’m very familiar with this effect (and worse) from my X-E2, and it’s the main reason I ditched that camera and swapped to the older X-Pro1, which definitely does not suffer the same effect. I have owned (in turn) the X-E1, X-E2 and X-Pro1, and in my experience the later X-Trans II cameras have greatly inferior jpegs; the organic “filmic” quality is gone and their low light performance (IMO) is much worse, as they use very aggressive noise reduction particularly on skin tones which often just comes off looking odd. I’m much happier with the X-Pro1 files which might have a touch more grain-like noise, but also have much more detail even at high ISO.

      • Hi
        Is the sensor the only difference between the Xpro1 and X100T?
        What are the big differences between the two (except that the xpro1 has interchangeable lens)?
        I am planning to purchase either the xpro1 or x100t.
        There are good sales for both now: Xpro1 + 18mm for 600 Eur and X100T + teleconverter for 1200Eur.

        Does the firmware update solves the problem with the AF on the xpro1?

        Any recommendation in the purchase?

        Thanks 🙂

        • Hi, I mainly replied in your previous comment. As far as the advantages over one or the other, well, you can’t really compare them. One is a compact camera (X100T) the other is a Mirrorless System Camera (X-Pro1). It really depend what you need and what you are looking for. If you are looking for a camera that can be used with various lenses, even old manual glass, a camera that is more versatile and has amazing build quality, I would go for the X-Pro1. If you are looking for a small camera with amazing capabilities to just put in your pocket and hit the streets, then go for the X100T. But, as I said before, this is a personal choice. You will have to see what you want and decide.
          Thanks

  8. Hello! Thanks for ur review. Have u tried a L39 adapter for xpro1? Do u think I can use xpro1’s viewfinder to focus with L39 lens? Is the crop factor around 1.5? Do u have any thoughts about my intention to use LTM lens with xpro1?

    Here’s some of my questions background info.
    I am a poor fresh grad that had fallen in love with street photography a year ago. I only have 2 ltm lens with me for my film cam. I am looking for a cheap and portable digital camera to use my LTM lens for color photography. Xpro1 seems to fit my need.
    My only alternative is Sony a7 which has similar price to a new Xpro1 in second hand market. I know the a7 is full frame but the battery performance is not good. I sometimes wait in a position for an hour and battery life can be a concern for me.
    Please advice! I love ur podcast btw.

    • Hi Carl thanks for your comment. You can use the X-Pro1 with adapters and legacy glass, the only downside is that if you need to focus you can only do so using the EVF not the OVF. There is a workaround that if you know how to zone focus. What focal length are your lenses? The wider the better for zone focusing. If you want to learn more about zone focusing you can check our relevant post at

      • Thanks for your reply. I always push my film to 1600 for using hyperfocal distance. However, it cannot be used when EV belows 7. Battery consumption of EVF can be a turn off for me as I shoot quite a lot in the range of EV 3 to EV 6. I will check the zone focusing that you mentioned. Thanks!

  9. Hi!

    Thanks for the great review!

    I am an amateur photographer and was mostly active back in the B&W film era.
    Like everyone, I bought a digital (eos 20D) many years ago and this took me away from composition, street photography and generally speaking from photography itself.

    Now I am trying to give it a new chance and hesitating between an eos 6d (I already own sevral non expensive Canon lenses) or the xpro1 (with the 18mm + 35mm or 27mm).
    I read both your reviews about both cameras here and I am more hesitant than ever.
    I´m not looking for any specific camera for a specific situation, I do mostly street photography (70%) and landscape (30%). Very occasionally portraits.
    Can you please give me an advice about that choice? Also which lenses to pick if you advice me the xpro1?

    Thanks a lot!

    • Hello!

      Thanks for commenting. From the style of photography you say you do, I would go for a camera that is more Street Photography oriented. The X-Pro1 is ideal for the streets and also offers great results for landscape shots because it has amazing dynamic range. Also, the size and weight of the X-Pro1 is great for carrying around for long hours since it is light enough and small enough. As for the quality of the glass, well, Fuji makes amazing lenses. Lenses that rival even the most expensive glass out there (Zeiss, Leica, Canon L, etc). Now, of course selecting a camera is a personal choice. I can’t really tell you what to get. You will have to choose yourself, but FYI, both the X-Pro1 and the Ricoh GR I own are amazing street cameras and take fantastic landscape shots too. I wouldn’t get a DSLR, it would just encoumber you. Sell your Canon Glass and get something smaller with the extra money. But, then again, you might like the DSLR bulk and size, so as I said before, the final decision is up to you.

      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

      • Hi and thanks for taking time to reply.

        I was wondering how the optical rangefinder works: does it adapts automaticaly to the chosen lens or there is a frame into the rangefinder that defines the borders captured by the lense?
        I am planning to purchase it with the 18mm and 35mm or 27mm.
        Which is more comfortable to use (35mm or 27mm) in relation with the rangefinder?
        I´m asking this as I dont have the possibility to try the lenses on such camera.
        Thanks again.

        • The optical RF adapts automatically to the lens. There is also a x2 optical magnification option. The 27mm if much more fast and comfortable because of it’s size and weight, but the 35mm is faster at f1.4. So it is up to you what is more important to you. Personally I prefer the 27mm.

          • Hello again and thanks a lot!

            I read here and there that RAW files from the X Pro-1 are quite special and softwares aren´t managing the Fuji RAW format in a proper way.
            Have you been facing this problem?
            Not that I like playing with RAW files, but this can have its importance at some time.
            Now I have a very good deal on an EOS 5D m3 (with an other price) and I would go for the Canon for 2 reasons:
            – the EOS is water resistant (I live in Norway, not as sunny as Greece)
            – RAW file management between Canon (CR2) and Fuji known

          • Hello,

            No, I haven’t faced any problems whatsoever with the Fuji RAW files, but then again I do keep my Software updated at all times.
            As for your choice of camera, as I mentioned in a previous comment, it is all up to you what camera you would like to use for Street Photography. You have to decide what you need / want.

            Thank you

  10. Im in the market to getting a new camera. I was fortunate to borrow the x100s on a recent trip and fell in love with it. Because of that, I’m considering to buy the Fuji x100T but wanted to see which one you recommend… the FUJIFILM X-PRO or the FUJI X100T.

    • Hi Cisco,

      The X-Pro1 is a 3 year old interchangeable lens camera. It supports the full range of X lenses. The X100T is a fixed lens compact camera. Even though they have similarities, the have great differences too. My advice is to weight the pros and cons of each camera and see which one works best for you. As a person with a need for interchangeable glass I went with the X-Pro1 myself. The X100T is snappier, more responsive and smaller. IQ is just as good on both cameras and the experience is nearly similar. So, the choice is yours 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by!

  11. I have two PRO1 bodies and I love this camera for street photography. Of course it’s suitable for many other types of photography too. It’s not the fastest camera, but it’s not much slower than the other X-series cameras either, especially when there’s enough light. It looks great, it feels great and the images from this little machine are finger licking good. People sometimes ask me if it’s a film camera and some think it’s a Leica (how dare they!). I think the PRO1 is the nicest of the X-series cameras and I’m eager to see what the PRO2 will be like.

  12. Forgive me for having an opinion, but how can you attempt to review the auto focus while continuously passing off any auto-focus flaws by stating that you shoot with zone focusing as though AF is not important? Most street photographers DO use auto-focus and as such may IS a major factor when considering a camera. Whether you feel AF is important or not is irrelevant! If you’re going to post a review please take time to do it thoroughly, or leave it to people who know what they are talking about!

    • Hey there Jake, thanks for commenting and for reading through my review.

      Of course you have an opinion and many thanks for sharing it. We love open discussions, this is one of the reasons we blog about the things we love. Allow me to express a concern though. I feel that you have kind of got the wrong message. All references to the bad AF are mentioned in reference to the initial camera release when it had the original firmware. All mentions to the AF after the firmware upgrade are rated as mediocre. So, the AF is mediocre now, that will not change. It still works in the streets when there is light, but as soon as light diminishes, so does the AF.

      Now, the fact that personally I zone focus in the streets doesn’t mean that I haven’t used the AF too and it also doesn’t mean that I don’t have my own opinion about it. We are all entitled to our own opinions, remember? That was your opener and we should all respect that, without losing our temper.

      Saying that, I would like to read your thoughts about the camera. Even better, if you have written a review about the X-Pro1 I would love to read it. Please feel free to post a link to it and share it with the Streethunters.net community.

      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

  13. Great article. For those reading the comments and wondering if they should buy an X Pro 1, then here’s my experience so far, I have had mine 3 months + my rational for buying one. My other cameras have been canon, my most recent the 70d which does reasonable video by the way. BUT the lowlight performance wasn’t the best and more importantly the good lenses are optimised for full frame, are naturally expensive, and necessarily large. The crop lenses are for the most part mediocre and there are no good wide primes. So for a while I considered a 5/6D, but worried that this would tie me into big heavy expensive kit.

    So after much research I bought the xpro1 with the bundled, 18mm and 27mm lens and nice leather case. Plus I picked up the 35mm and 60mm. No regrets. I looked at the XT1 but it seemed a lot of extra money for something that didn’t feel as good in the hand.

    I’m lucky enough to live in the English Lake District which is great,but often cloudy where the camera performs well. I have also being following an engineering project in a factory where the camera is again excellent. Another plus is because it is light weight it is perfect for hikes. I carry it using the back half of the case which gives it protection.

    In terms of lenses, I would never have bought the 27mm, but it is a super sharp, tiny device. So thumbs up.

    The 18mm has had some poor reviews, and it isn’t perfect. But stopped down to F2.8 I got some great shots of the Milky Way, so tick in the box. Absolutely light years ahead of Canon kit lenses and my sigma 10-20 f3.5. So I would score the image quality as actually pretty high.

    The 35mm is just spectacular. It is also fantastically well made.

    I have only used the 60mm for a couple of hundred shots and while it can be tricky to focus, it has non of the back focussing errors of the Canon 85mm and is nicely ahead of the canon nifty 50. While tricky it is discrete, small and light, allowing me to catch people in natural poses in a work environment. The bokeh is also nice. So for those prepared to work at it, it is a good addition. The 56mm is a brick in comparison.

    I picked up the better of the two flashes, can’t remember the number, the one with the dial for £85 and it is brilliant, again TTL or manual with a simple dial to adjust the compensation.

    Ultimately I am just supporting the other positive comments. The autofocus is fine, just focus in on an edge or other point of contrast and recompose and it is fast and accurate. Only negatives, iffy video moire can be an issue. So I am keeping the 70d for that kind of work and praying hard that the Xpro2 does great video too. Final point, real world image quality is on par with the Canon 5D Mk2 technically, so no issues there, good enough for most things. Now I just need to become a half decent photographer as I can no longer blame the gear as it also knocks dead my Sony RX100. I mention these other cameras as it may help people with real world benchmarks.

  14. Hello
    I’m back with narrowing my choice either to the X100T or the Xpro1 + 18mm.
    I guess both have the same image quality and I was a bit concerned with the autofocus of the Xpro1. Does the new firmware improves this so the AF becomes as good as the X100T?
    What are the main advantages (apart the possibility for changing lenses on the Xpro1)?
    Thanks!

    • Hello!

      The X-Pro1 and the X100T use different sensors and the IQ from both those cameras is not quite the same. Many agree that the X-Pro1 sensor (X-Trans) produces a filmic look that the X-Trans 2 sensor can’t produce. Personally I haven’t compared the both of them, but I can surely say that I really like the results from the X-Pro1. As for the AF, well, after the latest 2 or 3 updates, the X-Pro1 has been focusing just fine for me. If you check out the latest Street Hunt we shot in Istanbul (http://www.streethunters.net/blog/2015/09/16/street-hunt-no16-istanbul-turkey/) it has mainly been shot using AF.

      I hope that helped.

    • Currently with Fuji you have to decide between the best IQ or the best AF; you can’t have both. The reason is the difference between the original X-Trans and X-Trans II sensors found on the X-Pro1 and later cameras like the X100T respectively.

      The X-Pro1 has contrast detect AF only; firmware updates have greatly improved the algorithms that drive this over time, but the hardware has its limitations and that’s that. The X-Trans II sensor in later cameras has added “phase detect” pixels that mean those cameras (like the X100T) can use a combination of phase detect and contrast detect to be faster. It’s not night and day, and compared to other brands they’re still a bit behind the curve, but in certain situations they are quicker in a way the older cameras without these phase detect pixels simply cannot be.

      HOWEVER, unfortunately that is not the only difference with the newer sensor; the IQ has also changed particularly in jpegs, and many people (myself included) don’t feel it’s an improvement. The newer output is much less organic and has lost the “filmic” look that made the first cameras so special; worst still, jpegs at high ISO apply a very agressive noise reduction to faces and skin tones that can make them appear “waxy” or plastic looking, and this cannot be turned off. It’s a real flaw in these cameras and the only solution is to shoot in raw, which isnt what everyone wants to do.

      I personally felt so strongly about the IQ issue that I changed back from an X-E2 (with the newer sensor and faster AF) to the X-Pro1, and I have no regrets about that – although I do wish they could have just left the IQ alone while improving the AF.

  15. Have used the XP1 (and an X100s) for 18months, doing street / product / performance / still life / architecture, etc: So I’ve had time to settle in with it and learn it’s quirks and strengths. My conclusion is that the XP1 is a good (not great) camera with great lenses – but with a fatal flaw: All the various buttons and controls (there’s a lot of ’em), from the front located focus mode switch, to the rear mounted buttons, are live all the time, easily bumped or moved in dynamic shooting situations (as opposed to calm, controlled scenarios): which result in the camera setup constantly changing without the user’s knowledge. Yesterday I spent 4 hours shooting a state fair at night, alternating between the XP1, a Leica M4, and a Rolleiflex: The Rollei was suspended around my neck, the Leica and XP1 slung off a shoulder, resting on top of a camera bag: I lost count of number of times the XP1 settings had changed because various buttons were accidentally activated as the camera was pressed against my side or the camera bag, or when I’d quickly grab it to make a shot (and I have very small hands): ISO, focus, display mode, drive, custom settings, were constantly altered: I’d set the camera up, confirm settings, walk around, grab it, and find that once again, settings had changed. Incredibly annoying and frustrating experience: By the end of the evening, I was ready to put the camera and lenses on Craigslist and be done with it.

    Short of slapping gaffer tape across all the buttons (already did that with the focus mode switch) if Fuji could come up with a firmware modification that would provide the option to de-activate all selected controls except for basic exposure settings, that would help – a lot.

    • Hello Jim,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I haven’t faced this problem. The only thing that I have found that changes is the manual focal distance when set to manual mode. Maybe your buttons are extra sensitive? Do you have a local Fuji service centre that you could give them the camera to check?

      Thanks

    • The aperture ring and ev dial, granted, they can be knocked and moved and there’s not much to be done about those. The shutter dial is much harder to knock. However I’m confused about what you’re saying re the buttons – if you’re turning the camera off when not in use (eg with the switch around the shutter button) there’s no way they can still be active or affecting any settings, no matter how often they get pressed.

      If for some reason you don’t want to turn the camera off, is it possible to lock all the buttons by pressing and holding the OK button, which sets a key lock. Press and hold again to unlock.

      • I never switch a camera off / on – too busy. Read the manual – skipped over the OK lockout trick, as it was embedded in a section on Macro mode – not under general usage, or listed in the index, (or searchable online). Anyway, point’s moot – ditched it; controls were just too finicky/sensitive and AF too slow for my needs. Great lenses though – miss them more than the camera.

  16. I’ve no idea how you haven’t managed to knock the exposure compensation dial out of adjustment before now Spyros. Each time I pick mine up I have to re-set the thing back to -0.3. Fujifilm really need to make this control a lot stiffer.
    The X100S also suffers with this, although not as badly. I’m seriously thinking of modifying both my cameras by fitting a rubber washer or similar under the dials to stiffen up the controls.
    It is the single most annoying design defect in what is otherwise a great system.

    My favourite? X100S and zoom with my feet. I find the inbuilt fill flash worth its weight in gold. IQ? I can’t tell the difference between X100S and X-Pro1.
    I own both, I use both. But if I had to keep just one? X100S every time.

    • Graham, hello. I use a thumb grip, so I suppose that is the reason why. The other thing is I might have not noticed (e.g. when using Flash I have no thumb grip) because I shoot manually. I suppose if I was using a semi-automatic mode and I nudged the exposure comp, it would be annoying. Thank you for sharing your opinion on the X100S. I have used that camera and I really like it. Unfortunately I don’t own one. Maybe in the future, but I am not sure. The X-Pro1 for me is just great at the moment. I am looking forward to Fuji revealing the X-Pro2 soon. That should be yummy, but we will see.
      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

  17. Hey man,

    I was just looking over this review. Great review.

    I’m wondering, would you still think it’s a great camera today? I see a nice sale on amazon.co.uk 619pounds for camera + 2 lenses that only those are around 600.

    Thanks!

    • Hello Daniel and thank you for commenting.

      I am happy you enjoyed the review. As for your question, the answer is yes. The X-Pro1 is a great camera. It has a fantastic sensor, the rendition of the photos are truly amazing and the colours are outstanding. Grain feels natural and the filmic look is very noticeable. Its build quality is great, the hybrid viewfinder is something I absolutely adore. AF in daylight is acceptable, but at night you will need the AF Illuminator on. As a camera, it has never let me down. It is easy to handle, feels great in the hand and is now sold for as little as €700 with the XF18 and the XF27. Daniel, I think that is a steal! You should definitely purchase the camera and let me tell you why. The XF18 costs currently costs around €400 and the XF27 costs about €350. So, both lenses together, in the best case would cost about €700, which is the price of the combo that INCLUDES the X-Pro1 camera body. Even if you find that you don’t like the X-Pro1, which I highly doubt it (unless you are a very particular shooter), you have got 2 very good lenses that you can use on any other X camera.

      I hope my answer helped.

      P.S. I am not switching to the X-Pro2 yet. My X-Pro1 works for me just great. It has never let me down and I have shot with it in very bad conditions. The only way I am going to an X-Pro2 is if someone gives me one, or if my X-Pro1 dies somehow.

      • So i bought an xpro 1 but cant figure out how to use the EVF with non Fuji lenses (Leica 50mm sumicron) I was looking forward to split image and peaking. The firmware version is 2.01?

        • Update to the latest firmware to get focus peaking. The X-Pro1 doesn’t have split image. Upgrading is quite easy. You can find info on the Fujifilm website. Also after you upgrade from 2.01 you should see improvements with the AF speed too.

  18. Hi, awesome review ! 🙂 now that we are in 2016, would u recommend the Xpro 1 over the xe2? Which would be a better pick? I’m also concerned about the autofocus speed for the xpro 1. Is it much improved after the firmware update? Thanks!

    • The XE2 has a newer sensor, faster AF and a better EVF. The X-Pro1 is a professionally built camera. Full metal, great finish and the OVF is just awesome. AF isn’t bad with latest firmware and you can find it bundled with two lenses for as much as the XE2 body if I am not mistaken. Personally I would pick the X-Pro1 but camera choice should be a personal choice so it is up to you in the end.

      • I live in Australia and it seems like it is the other way around here, with the Xe2 being more expensive than the xpro 1 body hahaha 🙂 thanks for the reply, seems like there’s so much love for the xpro 1’s. I would think although the IQ of the xpro 1 is just ever so slightly behind the xe2 (from what I see on comparometer), this can be evened out in post processing?

        • It depends on what you are looking for. The original Xtrans sensor that is in the X-Pro1 delivers a more organic, filmic result that personally is gold for me! The Xe2 has the newer Xtrans II sensor that has a more “modern”, clean look. Both are awesome and much better than what other cameras deliver but for me the X-Pro1 just produces exactly what I am looking for. As for the RAW files of the C-Pro1, they have an amazing latitude and can take a lot of heat in Lightroom before showing any signs of “bad” tempering.

    • Hey Isaac, I also got the XPro1 with the 27 and 18 and all I can say is that if you’re not compring it to a DSLR because they are 2 different type of cameras. I’ve been using it for some inside family photos the af is no slouch.

      The camera is built like a tank and the handling and overall feel is awesome. Even if its a 4 year old camera the jpegs are coming out of this little thing and iso can easily go out to 6400 without a issue or no noise reduction. Sure the noise is there but it adds to the feeling, it depends on your taste,

  19. I’m guessing that you have an intuitive approach to “shooting zone” with your X Pro 1. I just bought an X Pro 1 in returning to photography after a 15+/- year break. In film, I always shot “zone”. Would you please comment? Thanks1

  20. Man, they are close. I imagine with firmware updates a lot of things WILL be added to the xt1. That being said it comes down to RF vs. SLR style shooting preference. 24MP vs. 16 is a big difference but the uncompressed raw is bigger.

    There is something ethereal about the images taken with the x-pro 1 (and xt-1) but i’m not sure it is there in the x-pro 2.

    I recently got an xt-1 and plan on pairing it with a Leica 35mm summicron, 50mm summicron and 135mm f2.8 Elmarit. I also have some Nikon mount glass (Tokina 11-16 2.8) which is one of the sharpest lenses i’ve ever used. So until I get Fuji glass the improved auto focus is not the issue, however, the auto focus aids would be and I am wondering, x-pro 1 for $499.00 new (I could afford the fuji glass) xpro 2 and no new glass, or just enjoy the xt1?

    There are worse problems to have for sure…..

    If I never get a Fuji lens but only used the above listed would the x-pro 1 be the camera to go with?

    • That’s a tough one. It depends on your shooting style. I would say focusing manually with the X-Pro1 and that 135mm would be a hard job. The X-Pro1 has only got the focus peaking visual aid in EVF and that isn’t the best I have used (EVF or Focus peaking). If you are used to the XT-1 you might not like what the older X-Pro1 has to offer. The 35mm and 50mm would be equivalent to 52mm and 75mm respectively. Focusing will be as fast as you can manage it. I would stick to the XT-1 since you already have it and get a nice Fuji prime, but the choice is yours.

      • Wow, that was a fast response. It was a gift and I may have the opportunity to exchange it for the x-pro 2 but the images I’ve seen while technically are very good are as you said missing something the x-pro 1 seems to have.

        I look forward to your thoughts.

        By the way I loved your article and many of the replies so much i put the xp1 in my cart.

        • Michael I haven’t seen anything produce the images the X-Pro1 produces yet. Truth be told, I haven’t used the X-Pro2 yet, but reviewers are saying that the very slick and modern look of the XT-1, X100T, X100S (all X-Trans II sensor cameras) has gone and the more organic, filmic look of the original X-Trans sensor packed in the X-Pro1 is back. The X-Pro1 is a great camera and at the price it is selling it is a steal! Especially if you get the bundle with the 2 lenses (XF18 & XF27). What a steal man!!! The only reason why I was cautious with my first answer was because you seem to be a narrow angle manual focus shooter and well the X-Pro1 is just not ready to give you that experience. It can, but you will not like it. The XT-1 on the other hand and the X-Pro2 are much more technologically advanced cameras and they can give you a great experience with the lenses you are referring too. But, if you can exchange the XT-1 for the X-Pro2 I say GO FOR IT! Don’t even think about it mate. The X-Pro2 is better in every single way and the lenses you have will work much better on that body because of the multiple visual aids it has to offer. The other thing you could do is to not get the manual glass, sell the XT-1 and get the X-Pro1 bundle with the lenses, SAVE a ton of money, heck, you will even make money and own a wonderful piece of kit.

  21. Spyros this will sound like heresy ….. I am more interested in adapted lenses. Have firmware updates improved manual focus with the Pro 1 ? I am new to digital so have not trialed serious software for raw processing. Fuji gives me a camera with awesome Jpeg quality so i might only use raw 25 percent. I like the rangefinder style body with viewfinder on the side. Hoping that X-Pro is simple to use & not what people describe as ‘menu maze’ operation. I use to shot 4×5 so speed is not top of my list for attributes. Looked at X-E2 but people images just do not seem to have the same quality as first generation sensor. Where i live there is an actual brick & mortar camera store, so i will experience Pro2 viewfinder.

    Great review & thanks for any input on manual focusing

    • Hello Hunter,

      Your comment about the adapted lenses isn’t heresy of course! There is amazing legacy glass you can use with the X-Pro1. But as you said the focus assist in this camera isn’t all that good. It only has white coloured focus peaking. It isn’t bad, but if you are shooting in a bright environment it might be hard to use. If you choose to use wide glass then you can zone focus or hyperfocus like I do and not worry about manual focusing at all. The X-Pro1 is a simple to use camera and I rarely dive into the menus, unless I need something very specific. 99% of the time, I don’t even have the LCD screen turned on. The X-Pro2 viewfinder and software supports more manual focusing assists. Hope you found my answer helpful.

      Stay Sharp & Keep Shooting!

  22. Hi – I’ve read that there is no dioptre adjustment for the viewfinder – has anyone here had any issues with that – I need glasses for reading but my long distance vision is fine. It is one of the few things that puts me off the x-pro 1.

  23. Excellent article. Thanks. I’ve just bought an X-pro1 which I’m using with a Fuji zoom, but predominately with my OM Zuiko MF lenses. My question is, If I need to upgrade the firmware, do I need to do this in steps, or will the latest update encompass all previous updates?
    Thanks David

  24. Hi, and thanks for the great review. I’ve just bought an X-pro1 barely used which I’m using with the stock 16-55 lens but also my old OM lenses and an adaptor. I think I need to update the firmware. My question is, will the latest update give me all previous updates or do I need to download previous updates first? Thanks David

  25. I have owned the X Pro 1 for two years and find it to be an excellent camera. My original lens line-up was 35 mm F. 1.4 and 18 mm F.2. I was never totally sure about the 18 mm and sold it on for the amazing 23 mm F2. I now feel I have two lenses that cover all of my street photography needs. Most of my Fuji images are in a private gallery at my website and connected to my e-book – soon to be published. Purchasers get access to the gallery. Fantastic camera, incredibly filmic, and a camera I will be happy to use for a long time to come.

  26. Thank you for your reply, Spyros. Indeed it is. If nothing else a camera should be comfortable in the hands of a photographer and this one is. I won’t be moving to anything else while it is still alive and kicking.

    • My thoughts exactly! I will give up my X-Pro1 only when it is dead and then again, I might even buy another. I tried the X-Pro2, Fujifilm sent it over so I could review it, and it is an amazing camera too, but the price difference is massive. More thoughts on that when the official review is released though 🙂

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