First Impressions: Fujifilm X-E2

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Photo Plus Expo 2013 Fujifilm XE2 XQ1 Mini90 Instax product images (13 of 18)ISO 16001-50 sec at f - 2.0

Fujifilm recently updated their prosumer targeted X-E1 camera to the X-E2. The new update is overall a minor upgrade to the one of the company’s previous best sellers. With a still modest 16.3MP APS-C sized sensor (though a new one inside) the camera mostly enjoys a couple of spec bumps with some other features like real exposure preview and some improved autofocusing.

At Photo Plus Expo 2013, we had some personal fondling time with the camera. Though we handled pre-production models, so the image quality wasn’t final.

Tech Specs

• 16.3 million Megapixels APS-C X-Trans CMOS II Sensor

• EXR Processor II

o Start-up time of 0.5

o Shutter lag time of 0.05

o Shooting interval time of 0.73

• AF speed 0.08 seconds

• Lens Modulation Optimizer for improved image quality

• Extra high resolution 2.36 million dot OLED electronic viewfinder

• ±3 EV Exposure Compensation dial with third stops increments

• 3” (1.04 million dot) premium clear LCD (High contrast, High Brightness and Wide viewing angle)

• Built-in Super Intelligent pop-up Flash(hot shoe attachment also available for external flash)

• ISO200 – 6400, extended ISO 100, 12800, 25600, Auto(maximum ISO setting from ISO 400 – ISO6400 available)

• Q Menu shortcut button

• In-camera RAW converter

• Film simulation modes (Velvia, ASTIA, PROVIA, Monochrome, Sepia, Pro Neg.Std & Pro Neg.Hi)

• Artistic features: Multiple exposure, Panoramic shooting,Toy Camera, Miniature, Dynamic Tone, Pop Color, Soft Focus, High Key, Low Key, and Partial Color.

• Selection of Bracketing functions (AE/ISO/Dynamic Range & Film Simulation)

• Full HD Movie

• Microphone/shutter release input (φ2.5mm)

• Super Intelligent Flash

• Approximately 350 shots per battery charge

The FUJIFILM X-E2 (body only) will be available in November 2013 for $999.95 in both black, and a two-tone black and silver. It can also come as a kit with the XF18mm-55mm (27-84mm) F2.8-4 lens (kit) which will be available in November for $1,399.95.

Ergonomics

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Photo Plus Expo 2013 Fujifilm XE2 XQ1 Mini90 Instax product images (9 of 18)ISO 16001-80 sec at f - 2.5

 

The XE2 is a camera that in all honesty, feels like an old Leica CL.

No, we’re not kidding.

When you look at it from the front, you begin to think about what Leica might have created if the camera was update for digital. And when you look at the X-E2’s front, you see something incredibly minimal, sleek and thin.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Photo Plus Expo 2013 Fujifilm XE2 XQ1 Mini90 Instax product images (10 of 18)ISO 16001-50 sec at f - 2.5

 

The Fujifilm X-E2 also has some minimal and once again very Leica-like controls on top. Here you’ll find the pop-up flash, hot shoe, exposure control dial, shutter release, a custom function button, and the exposure compensation dial.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Photo Plus Expo 2013 Fujifilm XE2 XQ1 Mini90 Instax product images (11 of 18)ISO 16001-50 sec at f - 2.5

 

The back of the X-E2, on the contrary, is where you’ll man the ship. On the top left is the EVF–which seems to be not much of an update from the X-E1 and X Pro 1 in real life use. Then there are the typical controls around the LCD screen for playback, drive, directional control, and all.

The buttons on the model that we handled felt a little small.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Photo Plus Expo 2013 Fujifilm XE2 XQ1 Mini90 Instax product images (12 of 18)ISO 16001-50 sec at f - 2.0

 

The X-E2’s flash also pop up and can be pulled back to act also like a bounce flash. While the flash pops up quite a bit, we’re not sure if it will work with some of the company’s longer lenses (longer in regards to actual length, and not focal length.)

Build Quality

The X-E2 feels solid in the hand. It feels significantly more solid than the X100s though still not as solid as the X Pro 1. When a grip is attached, you may become even more attracted to the build.

Autofocus

We didn’t notice any major differences in the autofocusing speed between the X-E2 and the X-E1. In fact, the X Pro 1 isn’t far off from this either.

To be fair, we tested it in a very low light area–and convention centers aren’t the best test environments. We’ll have to really put this through a thorough runthrough when we get a review unit in.

Image Quality

Unfortunately, we also were not able to gauge image quality because these units are pre-production samples. In other words, we couldn’t put a card in.

First Impressions

The X-E2 isn’t a camera for someone to upgrade to. Instead, it feels like a camera that someone will instead just want to come to the Fujifilm system for. If you’ve got an X Pro 1 or X-E1, stick with what you’ve got and continue to focus on taking great pictures. But so far, we’re not convinced that the X-E2 is a very big upgrade at all.

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