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80out of 100

Fujifilm 12 Megapixels X-S1 26x SuperZoom Review by Pocket-lint

2012-02-15 01:41 | Source
8711 reviews
On November 24 2011, Fujifilm announced the X-S1, a new bridge camera with a 2/3-type 12 Megapixels EXR CMOS sensor and a 24-624mm (35mm equivalent) Fujinon optical zoom lens. The X-S1 is built in Japan to exacting standards, the body has a high-quality look and feel with metal dials, a rubberised coating and superior handling characteristics that will appeal to the discerning photo enthusiast. Here are the key features:

  • High quality Fujinon 26x optical zoom covering 24-624mm (35mm equivalent) with Intelligent Digital Zoom boosting range up to 1248mm
  • Superb build quality and finish with rubberised coating and metal dials
  • 12 megapixel EXR CMOS sensor
  • Up to 10 frames-per-second shooting
  • Large EVF with 1.44 million pixels and 26 degree viewing angle
  • Tiltable three-inch rear LCD with Sunny Day mode
  • Full HD video
  • PASM modes
  • Raw file format
  • Film simulation modes
  • Macro focusing down to 1cm
  • Lithium battery providing up to 500 shots per charge
  • Optical image stabilisation
  • 360° Motion Panorama mode

Optically, the lens comprises 17 glass elements, including four aspherical elements and two ED lenses, a nine-bladed diaphragm and a maximum aperture of f/2.8 at the wide end of the zoom range. In standard mode, the lens focuses down to 30cm, but by selecting Super Macro Mode, users can focus down to 1cm. Additionally, the Fujifilm X-S1 features the same 2/3-inch 12 megapixel EXR CMOS sensor as the X10, Coupled to the EXR CMOS sensor is the high speed EXR processor, which offers a minimal shutter lag of just 0.01sec and a high speed continuous shooting capability of 7fps at full resolution or 10fps at six-megapixel resolution. The 0.47-inch EVF features 1.44 million pixels for clarity and has a wide viewing area of 26 degrees to reduce eye strain. The camera also features a tiltable rear monitor, manual exposure controls and raw image capture. The Fujifilm X-S1 is listed for $999.99 and it's currently selling at around $799. Here's the summary of review by Pocket-lint, giving it a rating of 4 out of 5:

"The X-S1's standard ISO sensitivity runs from ISO 100-3200, whereafter image dimensions shrink and files get smaller in a bid to counteract more challenging processing. ISO 4000-6400 is only available at 6-megapixels in size, while ISO 12,800 can only be captured at 4-megapixels. Our advice? Stick to the standard settings. As the lens dips down to an f/5.6 brightness at its fullest 624mm (equiv.) it's likely that the higher ISO settings will get plenty of use in order to benefit from a faster shutter speed. No other superzoom has been able to produce ISO 3200 shots to quite such a successful degree before, though it's not going to beat either a compact system nor DSLR with equivalent (and, we must admit, far, far more expensive) lens. Which is the very point: although the X-S1 is an eye-watering £700 it sits in the market rather well. Yes it's more than a Nikon D5100, yet it's far cheaper than a D5100 plus Sigma 70-300mm or similar lens combo. It's even more cost-effective than a group of compact system camera, and for that the X-S1 deserves praise. However, (there's always a but, isn't there) there's an ongoing issue as experienced by the X10: Specular highlights, ie, the white points from light sources or glinted reflections in sunlight, can "blow out" into circular forms that are far larger than they ought to be and, in some circumstances, become a huge distraction. 

The X-S1 is king of the superzooms and will see off any of the competition. Though, at £700, it's a costly investment. But an investment is just what it feels like - this is a quality bit of engineering. But it's not without fault. The autofocus system is good, but can leave a feeling of longing for something yet more capable - in particular at the telephoto end of the zoom range and when in continuous autofocus mode. Image quality, too, is an echo of the X10: there's that ongoing processing issue that can cause specular highlights to morph into white orbs (whether shooting Raw or JPEG, it doesn't matter). Otherwise we're full of praise: image quality is impressive and beyond its competitors, though next time we'd like a full-resolution ISO 6400 setting. A decent electronic viewfinder is also something superzooms have been crying out for - and the X-S1 hits the nail on the head with its 1.44m-dot EVF. The £700 price tag will be a big ask for many, yet the sensor, viewfinder, metal parts in the build and the high-standard of optics won't be cheap to produce. And what alternative is there? A Nikon J1 with 30-110mm or a Panasonic Lumix GF3 with 100-300mm will both cost considerably more and neither offer a viewfinder. Think of it in that perspective and the X-S1 is worth every penny for the right user."

Fuji Finepix X-S1 Sample Photos on Flickr

Fuji Finepix X-S1 Camera Reviews Roundup

Steve's Digicam - Nov 14 2012
"One of the nice things about today's more advanced cameras is that they can offer a large number of manual control features, while also remaining easy to use in fully automatic mode. The X-S1 fits right in with these types of cameras, providing quite a few manual controls -- including a manual focus option -- while also remaining easy to use when you just w..." More »
Not Rated
PCMag - Oct 29 2012
"We used Imatest to check the sharpness of the X-S1's lens. It scored 1,685 lines per picture height at its widest setting and aperture, which is a bit shy of the 1,800 lines required for a sharp image. This is in line with Fuji's similar HS30EXR, which ekes out 1,704 lines. Where the X-S1 beats the HS30EXR is in terms of image noise--it keeps it below 1.5 p..." More »
80out of 100
PhotographicCentral - Oct 24 2012
"That Crazy Lens!- As if a 24-624mm focal range wasn't enough, add an excellent macro ability and a f/2.8-5.6 max aperture across its range, and it should just about cover most photographic situations with aplomb. Indeed, this lens is the heart of the XS1 and it leaves very little to be desired as an overall package. Best of all, its really no larger and hea..." More »
Not Rated
CNET UK - Mar 28 2012
"The X-S1 shoots HD movies at either 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution or 1,280x720. It can step down to 640x480 for videos intended to be posted online -- a resolution at which it can up the frame rate to 70 frames per second. If you're happy to cut it still further, you can increase this to 120fps and 200fps at 320x240 and 320x112 pixels respectively. Each of t..." More »
100out of 100

Fuji Finepix X-S1 Reviews Roundup [Total 14 Reviews] »

Fuji Finepix X-S1 Camera Recent User Reviews

Great camera for the enthusiast, Baixinho "Moose" - Sep 16 2014
Verified Purchase ( I like the flexibility this camera gives me. I have had these types of cameras from Fuji since the first big zoom they did more than 10 years ago. Sure the lenses became longer along the way but the quality continues impressive. The focus is not very fast the at the highest magnification the pics are just so so but the sports mode takes really good...

Camera Failure - lack of quality control at Fuji?, Alan R. Terrell "artvet2" - Sep 12 2014
Verified Purchase ( DOA! Entered setup, inputted date and time, camera shut off, never to start again. Tried both batteries after charging. Take out and replace battery, camera starts at setup, select language, camera shuts off. Remove and reinstall battery, and same failure reoccurs....

This camera makes DSLR obsolete for most., Michael-B "MichaelB" - Aug 29 2014
Verified Purchase ( This camera convinced me to set aside my Nikon DSLR. I needed an upgrade anyway as my Nikon was aging and was looking for a Nikon replacement, so I could keep my investment in all the lenses I have. But, the flexibility of the lens range, high quality, low noise CMOS sensor and SLR controls and features are top notch. It feels and performs like an...

Five Stars, T. W. - Aug 28 2014
Verified Purchase ( Excellent!!...

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