Review: Fujifilm X-Pro 1

Cameras have certainly become more complex and innovative. A good example is Samsung’s Galaxy Camera – virtually identical to its high-end phone, just with the primary focus being the powerful camera.

Fujifilm's X-Pro 1 digital SLR (image: Fujifilm)

Sometimes a bigger, better, stronger camera is not required to take stunning pictures – and the camera needn’t be overly complex in order to get the very best out of the device.

Fujifilm’s X-Pro 1 camera is a great example of that, as the design is almost old-school, it is light-weight and one is able to take stunning images with virtually no previous photographic experience required..

Starting with the X-Pro 1’s design, the camera fits easily in the user’s hands and feels comfortable during operation. The fact that the camera is a digital SLR (Single Lens Reflex) with interchangeable lenses makes it more stable. The user can also hold on to the lenses during photo-taking, adding even greater stability.

All the buttons and switches that go with photos are easily accessible for the user, but when in doubt, the unit does come with a manual. It is always a good idea to go through the accompanying documentation for any device as neat tips and tricks are often revealed.

In terms of the business end, the unit features 16.3 million effective pixels and an image sensor of 23.6 mm x 15.6 mm (APS-C) with X-Trans CMOS with primary colour filter. When the camera is switched off, an automatic Sensor Cleaning system kicks in through the use of Ultra Sonic Vibrations. This ensures that the sensor is ready for the next session.

All the technical specifications combined allow the user to take beautiful images with almost no effort. Composition of images plays a huge part in taking a strong image, but with the camera set on Automatic, inexperienced users will also be able to find enjoyment in hassle-free images.

But for those with a bit more experience under their belt, the camera has a range of settings to choose from. The sensor has a sensitivity equivalent to ISO 200 – 6400, which is changeable by the user, but on automatic mode the camera will make use of 400, 800, 1600 and 3200.

For Exposure modes, experienced users can change between Programmed AE, Shutter priority AE, Aperture priority AE and Manual exposure – while an Automatic mode is also available.

The only thing that might be a little bit confusing is the menu system. It seems a bit outdated compared to those of more advanced cameras, but DSLR cameras are not known for their simplistic and colourful menus. But once again, playing around with the unit and going through the manual will help a great deal.

Making use of the Fujifilm X mount for lenses will accommodate the Fujinon XF18mmF2 R, XF35mmF1.4 R and the XF60mmF2.4 R Macro interchangeable lenses. While the camera body itself is small and compact (weighing on 450g) the lenses will take up most of the space when carried in a storage bag. For that purpose, the camera is not a great option as pick-up and go solution, but the payoff of great images is well worth it.

As mentioned, the Fujifilm X-Pro 1 is incredibly easy to use and takes absolutely stunning images with minimal effort. Users will be able to line up the perfect shot by making use of the 3.0-inch RGBW (White) LCD monitor, or using the Hybrid Multi Viewfinder – which can be change to two different settings, Optical or Electronic.

The X-Pro 1 is a great intermediary camera that perfectly bridges the gap between professional cameras and the compact units. It’s easy to use for those familiar with the basics of photography, but still lends the quality and the sophistication of professional set-ups.

All images within the gallery below were taken with the  X-Pro 1 by Charlie Fripp

Our score: 9/10

Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor