From Sebastian Lee's blog (on the Fuji X100s) 'But understand what you're getting into. Don't expect it to be a 1DX, or D800E. Regardless of what you read online....it won't make you a better photographer. It's not the DSLR killer some say it is. It's not a Leica. It is what it is, it has many flaws, and it might not be for you. For me it's still the only camera I've truly loved.' A great blog post and I urge you to read it.
First off let me say how much I agree with Sebastian. I really enjoy using my X100s and yes it has flaws. Yesterday I went out in great light, set the jpgs. to B/W RED FILTER and came back with a set of images I was really pleased with.
And there is no doubt that the X100s is great fun to use, but it's also a serious camera. Plus it has these two converters for Wide-Angle (19mm) and 'Tele' (33mm) giving the camera more versatility. Yesterday I used these conversion lenses without ever using the 23mm f/2 lens without one of them fitted. So, all that's great and while I'm out with the X100s, I think to myself 'Why would I want anything else?'
But when i come to edit the images, there is one issue that constantly bugs me. And that is the distortion from the 23mm f/2 lens fitted to the X100s.
Above is comparison between the X100s and my X-T1 fitted with the 23mm f/1.4 lens. Both processed from raw in Photoshop CS6 ACR with the lens profile for each lens applied. As you can see the prime is fine but the X100s lens has significant barrel distortion, which needs correcting.
Further down this page there is a link to a lot of raw samples shot with the conversion lens. And a lot of the images are of buildings. Admittedly some are very old buildings, but you will notice considerable distortion on many of the files. The conversion lenses loose virtually nothing in terms of sharpness and contrast, but unfortunately they amplify the distortion. Below is an example of what I mean.
As you can see there is some serious curvature on the image. It can be corrected, but this takes time and it does result in a part of the picture being lost. This was taken with the Wide Angle Converter and using it certainly hasn't helped.
So something to be aware of if you are considering an X100S or X100T and the converters. Particularly if you shoot a lot of architecture.
Fuji X100s + WCL-X100 Wide Angle and TCL-X100 converter lenses. Raw File Samples For Download
To access and download these files - CLICK HERE
PLEASE NOTE - ALL IMAGES MADE AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD IN THIS POST ARE ©SOUNDIMAGEPLUS AND MUST NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES WHATSOEVER, BE SHARED OR USED FOR ANY PURPOSE OTHER THAN TO VIEW AND ASSESS PRIVATELY AND INDIVIDUALLY.
CLICK HERE for the link to download these Raw .RAF files.
There are a lot of raw files to look at and you can process them in whatever software you think works best. By making these files available it should give you a good idea of how the converters work in real world shooting situations and whether or not the distortion issues would impact on what you shoot.
Finally going back to the points raised by Sebastian at the top of the page. Regular readers will know that I've always had a love / hate relationship with Fuji. Though some Fuji users are in serious denial about much of it, the Fuji X system does have issues. Raw processing and battery life (plus this X100s distortion) being the most significant ones for me. And much as people like to convince themselves themselves that these 'flaws' aren't present, they are.
The reason I put Sebastian's quote at the top of the page was it very neatly sums up the issues with many of the Fuji X cameras. They do often get ascribed with powers they don't have and that, of course, helps nobody. (Apart from the Fuji Sales Department I guess!) As ever I'm keen to present as honest an appraisal as possible and to do that these issues have to be addressed. This doesn't mean that I don't love using my X100s, I do, but if I ignore what is obvious out of some notion of brand loyalty and misguided praise then what I write would pretty much be pointless.
FOR ALL MY POSTS ON THE FUJI X100S - CLICK HERE
A new way to support this site. My Version of Crowd Funding.
Up to now I've been including a Support this Site section. But it occurred to me that why not make that support specific to the gear I buy and review? Below is a poll on seven new items of photographic equipment just available or about to become so, that I would be interested in reviewing. And below that are seven donate buttons for each item.
This is a form of crowd funding, but what I'm attempting to achieve is not the whole amount to buy the item. I'm looking to fund the price of the item minus my tax allowance minus the amount I get for resale. For example, if I buy a camera for £1000. I might reasonably expect to sell it on after a few months for say £700. The loss of £300 can be set against my tax bill, so in effect my loss is £240. So once I achieve that £240, I can go ahead and get the lens knowing that I'm not going to loose money on it. And that's all I'm looking to do, not make a profit. If contributions exceed the amount I loose on a specific item, I will transfer those funds to something else, so I can buy that. Please note - the amount you choose to donate can be anything from $1 upwards.
This has the benefit in that it is reader driven. I'm also open to any suggestions that you might make for gear you would like added to the list. You can let me know this via the comments section or the various social media sites that publicise this blog.
So changes to how I operate the blog and what I write about. The major changes are lots more raw file samples to download and more user defined content. So instead of just reading about what I fancy using and buying, Soundimageplus readers get to help decide what gets reviewed her and gain access to large quantities of raw file samples, so that you can see for yourselves whether or not the image quality is what you are looking for. You also get reviews from someone who has no brand allegiance or any connection with any camera or lens manufacturer. As always reviews will be honest and independent and with no fanboy bias. (Apart from the fact that I seem to be a fanboy for an awful lot of different brands!!)
SUMMING UP THE CHANGES TO THIS BLOG
- Lots of raw file samples for download
- Archive of review posts over a period of time
- Real World testing in real time
- The 'tests' are actually conducted while I'm carrying out my professional work
- You get to decide what gets reviewed
- Crowd sourcing / funding of gear
- More user interaction and participation