Review Date: August 12, 2013
Category: Serious to Advanced Amateur
Photoxels Gold Award – Enthusiast Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
This Fujifilm X-E1 Review is based on a production model. All sample images are unretouched, except where specified.
The affordable X-PRO1. The X-E1 is basically the X-PRO1 with the hybrid optical/electronic viewfinder swapped with a high resolution OLED viewfinder. It uses the same excellent APS-C X-Trans CMOS image sensor with its unique array that makes the use of an anti-alias filter redundant and gives outstanding images. It retains the Shutter Speed dial / Aperture Ring combo that makes using this camera so intuitive.
Like the X-PRO1, the X-E1 is a camera in a category all its own. It’s not just because it has the Shutter Speed dial and its prime XF lenses sport a marked Aperture Ring; it’s also the quality of the build, image and lenses that all combine to make it a serious compact system camera that enthusiats can confidently adopt. The fact that Fujifilm publishes and regularly updates an X-Mount Lens Road Map, adheres to it and introduces extremely high quality lenses every time gives you confidence that you are investing in the future and can call the X system your own.
What we said about the X-PRO1 applies equally to the X-E1. The most demanding photographers will be happy with the extremely high resolution images it captures. It’s not the fastest mirrorless interchangeable lens camera as far as operational performance is concerned but, unless you’re into sports photography, the X-E1 is fast enough for most other types of photography that you won’t notice or be bothered too much.
The Fujifilm X-E1 is a camera that I can easily recommend. Its intuitiveness will make you wonder why anyone still "push a button before rotating a dial" when you can directly control the two major settings that determine exposure. Its high resolution images may be the deciding factor. If you are seriously considering upgrading your photography and want to commit to a system, the X-E1 has image quality that rivals — and even bests — some of the enthusiast and top-end DSLRs. Highly recommended!