Fuji X-E1 Review

on Sunday, November 23, 2014
This is an in-depth review of the Fujifilm X-E1 mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera, which was released on September 6, 2012 right before the Photokina event in Cologne, Germany. After the success of the X100 line and the release of the X-Pro1 (which initially received a rather mixed review from us due to its poor AF performance), Fuji introduced the X-E1 – basically a lower-end version of the X-Pro1. It was not an unexpected move, given how quickly Fuji was growing in popularity, thanks to its amazing retro design and excellent image quality. Despite its autofocus flaws and other quirks, both the X100 and the X-Pro1 created a huge fan base and a healthy community of supporters. The X-Pro1 was an expensive camera aimed at professionals and enthusiasts, so the X-E1 was naturally targeted as a more budget version with less features. In this Fuji X-E1 review (based on Firmware 2.00), I will provide detailed information about the camera, along with some image samples, and compare it to other cameras from Nikon, Canon and Olympus.

As usual, my goal was to thoroughly test the camera, especially its autofocus performance and accuracy (which historically has been a problem area for newly released Fuji cameras) and evaluate it for both personal and professional photography. As some of our readers might already know, I picked Micro Four Thirds as my mirrorless system of choice last year and I have been shooting with the Olympus OM-D E-M5since then. I loved everything about the X-Pro1, except for its bugs and AF performance, so I ended up dismissing the Fuji system completely last year. Since then, a number of our readers have been asking me to re-evaluate the X-Pro1 and review the new lines of Fuji cameras, including the X-E1. Fuji has been working hard on updating the reported issues and improving autofocus performance through firmware updates, so it made sense to revisit the Fuji X-Pro1. After two months of heavy use, I am happy to say that the Fuji X-Pro1 is indeed a totally different camera compared to what it was initially. Naturally, I went back and completely rewrote my Fuji X-Pro1 Review, praising Fuji for fixing bugs and autofocus issues, and making the X-Pro1 an attractive choice for most photography needs today.

Similar to the X-Pro1, my experience with the X-E1 has been very positive, as you will see further down in the review. Without giving too many spoilers, let me just say that I have been enjoying the X-E1 immensely, even more than the X-Pro1. During the last two months, I have shot various events, engagements, weddings and have used the X-E1 for personal photography as well, so by now I have a pretty good idea about its strengths and weaknesses.

1) Fujifilm X-E1 Specifications

Main Features and Specifications:
  1. Sensor: 16.3 MP (1.5x crop factor), 4.8ยต pixel size, same as on X-Pro1
  2. Sensor Size: 23.6 x 15.6mm
  3. Resolution: 4896 x 3264
  4. Native ISO Sensitivity: 200-6,400
  5. Boost Low ISO Sensitivity: 100
  6. Boost High ISO Sensitivity: 12,800-25,600
  7. Sensor Cleaning System: Yes
  8. Lens mount: FUJIFILM X mount
  9. Weather Sealing/Protection: No
  10. Body Build: Magnesium Alloy, Top and Front covers
  11. Shutter: Up to 1/4000 and 30 sec exposure
  12. Shutter Control: Focal Plane Shutter
  13. Storage: 1x SD slot (SD/SDHC/SDXC compatible)
  14. Viewfinder Type: 2,360,000-dot OLED color viewfinder
  15. Speed: 6 FPS
  16. Exposure Meter: TTL 256-zones metering
  17. Built-in Flash: Yes
  18. Autofocus: Yes
  19. Manual Focus: Yes
  20. LCD Screen: 2.8 inch, approx. 460,000-dot, TFT color LCD monitor
  21. Movie Modes: Full 1080p HD @ 24 fps max
  22. Movie Recording Limit: 29 minutes
  23. Movie Output: MOV (H.264)
  24. GPS: No
  25. Battery Type: NP-W126
  26. Battery Life: 350 shots
  27. USB Standard: 2.0
  28. Weight: 300g (excluding battery and accessories)
  29. Price: $999 MSRP body only at launch (currently sells for $799)


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