My first ever experience with a digital camera was back in 2001, I borrowed a friends’ Nikon Coolpix 5000 compact, eighteen years ago it was considered a ‘prosumer’ model. I remember looking at the 5-megapixel images on a computer screen and zooming in until I could see every individual coloured pixel. Most other compact cameras at that time were only packing 2 and 3-megapixel sensors, so I was slightly impressed, although not impressed enough to ditch my 35mm Nikon and Leica. I didn’t own a digital camera of my own until 2003; I got a Canon G5 compact (still only 5-megapixels) which led to the eventual purchase of my first ‘proper’ digital camera, the Canon 5D, in 2007.
It’s a common misconception that because I prefer using film for my personal and project work, this means I’m anti-digital, which is not the case. I’ve lost count of the digital cameras I’ve owned over the past 20-years; I shoot most of my commercial work on ones and zeros. I’ve just always preferred the look and the workflow of film. So, I was a tad surprised to be asked to test the new (it’s actually been available in the UK for about seven months) Fuji XF10.
I’ve only had the camera for a few days, so this a ‘first impressions’ rather than a full review of this 24-megapixel, APS-C sized sensor compact. I’ve only taken about 30 photographs with it, so far.
I did a bit of research before I received the XF10 and most photographers are comparing it to the street photographers favourite camera – the Ricoh GRII. I’ve never used the GRII, so can’t comment. The thing I keep hearing over and over is that the Fuji suffers from inferior focus performance – yes, in poor light it does hunt back and forth, but in daylight, I haven’t experienced any significant problems.
Build quality is excellent; I’m not sure if it’s a magnesium body or if it’s a composite material, but it feels very sturdy. The camera is tiny, about the same size as my Olympus Mju2 35mm ‘micro compact’, but it fits comfortably, even in my big sausage fingers. I have the matt black version, which I specifically asked for – the Champagne and brown leatherette version is, quite frankly, a visual monstrosity.
Picture quality through the 18.5mm lens (28mm equivalent) onto the 24mp APS-C sensor is stunning – the images here are all jpegs, straight from the cameras various presets, however, I will only be shooting RAW files from now on and editing in Lightroom.
I’ll play with the Fuji XF10 for a few weeks and report back with a full review. If it replaces anything, it’ll be the camera on my iPhone 8+.