Quick review: the 2019 Fuji XF10


Some camera purchases begin with much research, planning and deliberation; not to mention angst and hand-wringing. Others begin at airport duty free with too much time on one’s hands, and subsequent serendipity in locating a second hand unit. This falls into the latter category. I make no secret to being a big fan of large sensor compacts for their versatility and image quality. I liked the original APS-C GR, the Coolpix A and to a lesser degree, the original RX100; the RX0II is in my bag. You see, I had some time to kill at Heathrow, and landed up playing with some things I wouldn’t have done so otherwise. Those touch-and-try display counters are dangerous things.


I passed on the new GR for three reasons: price, battery life, and questionable AF performance in low light. The reduction in control points didn’t help, either. I didn’t look at the Fuji XF10, because honestly, I had no idea it existed. And the previous X70 didn’t really make my radar because I was happy with the GR. So it was with some surprise that I found that it ticked a lot of boxes – and didn’t suffer from the control schizophrenia of other Fujis (duplicate hard-coded/ variable parameter dials and display modes being my biggest peeves). It has the same vertical scrolling menu system as the Nikons, rather than horizontal of the Canons and Sonys. And perhaps my favourite feature: a joystick instead of a D-pad, whose default function is AF point selection. It also helps to increase available area on the back of the camera for a secure grip. This is a quick review after a couple of field sessions between meetings on my last trip, so there are admittedly some edges of the envelope that have not yet been explored. Let’s start with the basics.

_XF10224 copy

The XF10 is a fixed 28mm-equivalent f2.8-lensed compact around a 24MP APS-C sensor; unlike other Fujis, it uses a regular Bayer pattern and I think is the better for it – the sensor’s tonal response still has Fuji’s highlight bias, but has a bit more recovery on the shadow end and none of the strange diagonal artefacts around fine detail. The sensor also has phase detection photosites and some weird video modes (1080P60, 4K at 15fps). There’s no image stabilisation, but there is a hybrid shutter that can be electronic, mechanical, or EFC for the best of both worlds. Flash sync is up to 1/4,000s with the mechanical shutter, though the e-shutter modes top out at 1/16,000. It has a touch screen, a combined AF joystick and D-pad, twin control dials and a ring around the lens, but no hotshoe, EVF or tilting screen. The body is compact and definitely pocketable, but at the expense of a built in lens shutter: there’s a damn lens cap to lose (but a string to tether it to the body and have it flap around annoyingly).

_XF10216 copy

In use, other than the lens cap, the XF10 is actually very fluid (and I have a GR belt holster on order to remedy this, which with hard leather sides and the small lens front element should negate the need for the cap at all). There are more than enough control points for full manual control, though I tend to prefer it in program auto with exposure compensation on the rear dial. The battery lasts about 500ish frames with the way I tend to use it (single shot, power off when not in use), and it’s USB-charged. There’s a dedicated magnification button for checking focus at 100% before or after the shot, and you can jump between frames zoomed in during playback, which is very useful. It starts up very quickly and the lens doesn’t seem to move much – both speeding up time-to-ready (around a second) and focusing. Autofocus is fast and mostly positive, though I’ve noted a few lock-on errors on the background especially if there are partially reflective subjects in the frame. Fortunately, this is quite rare. Face detection is reliable and can be combined with single point AF: use the joystick to pick a point if there are no faces, but the camera will default to humans if and when it finds them. There’s one fly in the ointment here, though: you can’t pick the metering mode with face detection AF active. I have no idea why. The camera defaults to a sort of quasi-spot meter when it finds a face, which is fine, but it’s not very predictable for inanimate objects. It’s annoying, but fortunately there’s a histogram to allow tuning by exposure compensation dial, but no zebras, and the exposure doesn’t seem that stable if you reframe. Operationally, that’s about the only issue.

_XF10190 copy

All of this would be moot if image quality were poor; I actually found it to be far better than expected. The sensor itself seems to perform above the D3500, which is already excellent. It has a bit more dynamic range, lower noise – under some WB conditions, as much as two stops better perceptually – and PDAF. I would not hesitate to use ISO 6400, which yields pixel-level noise that’s actually similar to the Z7. Acuity is also excellent as the lens and sensor seem to be very well matched; centre sharpness is exceptional at every aperture, and corner sharpness is excellent even from wide open. The lens has none of the slightly low-contrast ‘vintage’ character of the X100 wide open. Instead, it has the same kind of clean microcontrast and bite we’ve come to expect from modern lenses. It’s also low in CA, distortion and relatively flare resistant, though I don’t know how much of that is down to baked in processing. Fuji also seem to have made big strides forward in color accuracy since I last looked – no more cyan skies, though reds are still a bit hot which yields slightly florid skin tones. JPEGs are better than ever, and I suspect usable with some parameter tuning. Highlight tonality and rolloff even without Fuji’s trick dynamic range recovery modes is amongst, if not the best I’ve seen in an APS-C sensor. Bottom line: this camera really delivers.

_XF10159 copy

I feel that of late, stabiliser technology has become so good we have been truly spoiled with very wide shooting envelopes. The Z7, for instance, can be handheld down to 1s at wide angle or 1/5s at 200mm and deliver consistently and critically sharp results – this allows for IOS 64 shooting handheld at night. Some trawling of the EXIF data reveals that I’m now venturing into the upper reaches less and less frequently, even though raw sensor capability there is improving, too. The XF10 does without a stabiliser, but still offers a decent envelope since the sensor itself is usable to ISO 6400, and you can get away with slightly slower shutter speeds thanks to the soft break point of the button and the electronic first curtain – I’d say we’re a solid two to three stops up on the first APS-C GR, for instance, which makes it very capable for a pocket camera with high peak IQ. No, it’s not a Z6 with an f1.4 lens, but that won’t fit in your pocket, either. Having played around with the current stabilised 24MP GR, I’m not even sure this is significantly better overall – the sensor isn’t as clean as the XF10’s, and the stabiliser isn’t as effective as you might expect. The XF10 delivers solid performance across the board, and shoots in a fast, intuitive way – other than the lens cap and face detection metering issue – both relatively minor – I can’t find anything to criticise within my expectations of what a pocket camera should be, and be able to do. The best part is that it’s around half the price of the GR – at between $450 and $499 new (depending if you can find an offer) it delivers serious value and earns a place in my bag*. I know I’ve not been a fan of Fuji’s products in the past, but I think they might just have me with this one. MT

*Unfortunately, at the expense of the RX0II, which is now the subject of some serious buyer’s remorse.

The Fuji XF10 is available in black or silver from B&H and Amazon.

_XF10143 copy

_XF10127 copy

_XF10050 copy

_XF10084 copy

_XF10054 copy

_XF10048 copy


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  1. Thanks to this blog, I’m using the XF10 since a few months now and to my findings the XF10 is best at what it is aimed to be: a remarkable highly capable daily smartphone companion. This is more then a pure X70 or GR replacement.

    Totally different then working with the x-T20, the number of pictures I make with my XF10 remain limited (not in the hundreds) but increase steadily over time as I am documenting life. And also… I leave the pictures on the SD-card, letting the XF10 transfer them automatically to my smartphone. And man. What a difference does this make to share lets say 5 good smartphone pictures upgraded with only one “Bang! Spot on!” XF10 picture!

    I also started appreciating the simple and sturdy design and build. Do I miss a tiltable screen? Yes, but it makes up for not being fragile. The tiny flash pushes above its weight, and sometimes I wonder how comes that a non-popup flash performs so well? The way you can easily set shuttertime to 1/100s, letting the camera pushin the ISO to 6400 and catching every movement tack sharp. Or the excellent app with auto save, and remote control.

    And there is more.
    I used the XF10 as a backup 18mm for event photography (pre corona of course), next ot my x-T20. Made some real fun family pictures with it. Out of the blue.
    Working form home, I have hooked from time to time the XF10 as a webcam to my laptop with a cheap Rulz video capture card. Gone grain, tack sharp picture, light bokeh and people asking “what camera are you using?”

    This simple looking tiny box is a photographic tool. It makes sense that this camera has been discontinued. Those that wanted one, might have got one. It’s a niche camera. But well done Fuji. Really well done. Bravo.

  2. Alexander Ulrich says:

    Hi Ming, I have a Ricoh grdiv and thunking about to upgrade to the XF10. But I am unsure if it´s worth it. What be great to hear your thoughts about it?

  3. From the B&H website, the XF10 has been discontinued.

  4. Richard Bach says:

    Just picked up one fo these on your recommendation, Ming. It’s a fantastic little camera and a worthy successor to my well used to Coolpix A it was replacing. Besides the customary strange Fuji customizability options and lack of direct control, its a pretty useable camera. I see no AF issues (as reported by half the user population).

    The sensor really is top-notch in the APS-C realm. As a brief former Fuji user I’m skeptical of their sensors (X-trans, at least in my workflow, made any foliage or fine organic patterns look like a bizarre watercolor and had weirdly limited dynamic range in many scenes) but this one has none of those artifacts.

    If only Fuji would quit the weird X-Trans stuff, their cameras would be a very tempting option. An XT-3 with some of those nice small primes and their excellent bayer sensors would be a dream, but alas does not exist…

    • AF: You’d be surprised how many people don’t have press and then complain about focus lag or something similar.

      And this sensor is much better than their X-trans stuff – it has none of the artifact IG and none of the dynamic range issues. I always had the feeling the JPEGs from Xtrans were about the same latitude-wise as the raw files – and the raw files were strangely blocked in the shadows. Neither was as good as a normal Bayer sensor.

      • Richard Bach says:

        Yes, exactly. The tonality of X-trans files look great IF you get them right straight out of camera, which seems to defeat the purpose of a raw file. The artifacts are mitigated, but pixel level sharpness just doesn’t seem to ever be there.

        A lot of users seem to like their JPEGs, but they have a pretty heavy handed color palette IMO (green trees much too cyan, blue skies much too magenta, reds too saturated). For whatever reason the color seems better on their bayer sensors too…

        I can not understand why, with the state of sensor tech where it is, Fuji is touting their X-Trans tech as their “premium” sensor tech. Each generation gets a bit better, as does the software support, but they’re still are not up to the standard of other brand’s bayer sensors. It really seems to hold back some otherwise lovely cameras.

        • The X-trans raw files are tonally sensitive to exposure, which I agree is strange. But I suppose that has something to do with the dual pixel thing and nonlinearity of the highlight end.

          The cyan color palette is…very unappealing, personally.

          But they continue to persist because of R&D spend that must be amortised, and there’s a free marketing bullet in being different for the sake of being different in a market that’s already crowded with same…

  5. Hi Ming…….Thanks for your blog and reviews. I got here by way of Ricoh GR research. I have a GR ii and LOVE it! My first serious camera and it has made me love to take pictures again. I’ve been toying with adding a second camera to fill the spots that the GR ii doesn’t fill: other focal lengths (35mm, 50mm, etc.) and higher MP for cropping.

    Any thoughts for an affordable 2nd camera?
    1) Ricoh GR III is too expensive for me.
    2) Fuji XF10 is like a GR ii with 24mp. Great for cropping. And pretty cheap! But seems it’s a soft lens?
    3) Considering Olympus E-P5 but you posted that “the M4/3 system has no lens of equivalent quality to the A and GR’s optics.”

    I’m not sure where to go from here. For now I’ll just enjoy the GR ii.

    • Enjoy the GRII if it isn’t broken. The XF10’s lens is very good – comparable to the GR – not like the X100, which is soft.

      M4/3 does have lenses of equivalent quality now but they’re more expensive than the GR/XF10 etc. and not compact.

      • Thank you, Ming! Good to know about the XF10’s sharpness. If I wade into Micro 4/3, do you recommend any lenses that match GR that are also affordable?


      • Olympus e-pl9 with panasonic 14mm or 20 mm lens may be better alternative to gr iv – very fast, good lens (especially panasonic 20mm f1.7), stabilisation, tilting screen, but IQ of xf10 little better in good hands.

  6. For future ownler I would like to point out that not only the RICOH GC-5 case but also the Tenba Skyline 3 pouch work well.

  7. I am about to buy one. Read a lot of reviews on this camera. And yours seem to be the only outlier; all other else (including DPReview) finds the AF frustrating. But, I trust you; I have been following you for years now. So, I’ll pull the trigger. Thanks, Ming!

    • Enjoy! A lot of reviews aren’t written by actual photographers 😉

    • Richard Bach says:

      I’m still not sure what the modern standard for AF is… Anything this side of a D6 gets slammed in the reviews for poor AF. As if all photographers spend their time shooting herds of antelope at dusk from a speeding car.

      I haven’t used a modern camera that doesn’t have fine AF in the hands of a reasonably skilled operator, I’m sure the XF10 is the same.

  8. Bill Walter says:

    I’ve been looking for an alternative to the GR cameras and this looks like it may be the one. Ming, in your opinion do the black and white images you get from this Fuji come close to the ones you get from the GR? I am impressed with the one above of the chair.

    • Both cameras have the potential to get there, but both also need work – the SOOCs don’t quite do it for me. I’d rate the Fuji’s sensor as being a bit better than the GR.

  9. Do you do soon with this camera? I just ordered one. I was wondering if it’s possible to set up in a way that doesn’t need post process raw work.

  10. Ian Knight says:

    Loved your review of the XF10 Ming. You mentioned in your review about the Dynamic range. What DR setting do you use?. I understand that the DR setting affects both RAW and Jpegs.
    Thanks Ian.

  11. Great article and photos!! How did you get it so sharp? How much processing did you have to do with the files? I’ve got a Xt20 and im blown away with the results from the XF10. Please share your secret? Cheers

  12. Tomás Tancredi says:

    would you prefer the xf10 over the GRII now thay the have about the same price?

  13. Thanks for your perspective on this camera. I have one! Bought it in an Amazon Boxing Day sale here in the U.K. I have had some pretty amazing OOC JPEGs from the XF10 but I don’t find it as predictable as my Olympus equipment when it comes to exposure. To put it bluntly, me and it have a bit of an awkward relationship. I’m looking forward to trying its raw files in Lightroom (and possibly the Fuji version of Capture One, also).

    • The histogram is your best friend here…and fortunately the lack of an X-trans sensor means recovery is what we’re used to (i.e. there is some).

  14. The face detection/metering issue exists on the X70 too. I got around it by mapping one of the buttons (trash button I believe) to turning face detect on and off. It allows me to quickly get face detect out of the way if there are no human subjects in the frame.

    I’m in the same boat as you in that I also had no idea that this camera had been released (I thought it was a retro review at first). I’ll have to check it out. It looks like a refinement that keeps all that was good about the X70.

    Thanks for the review!

  15. hmmmmm…… no my camera

  16. Hmmm… no hot shoe. Not the camera for me.

  17. Alex Carnes says:

    I want one too! Although, as the years go by, I’m not entirely persuaded I’m a wide-angle shooter. I see the attraction – the converging lines, the huge foreground etc., but stuff doesn’t really look like that does it?

    I still miss my GR though and I’m very pleased with the Sigma 28/1.4. I do not always share my own view!

    • My 2c is that the 28mm FOV is about the transition point between ‘normal with peripheral vision’ and obviously ‘wide’. Anything wider is usually too much and draws too much attention to the perspective (with exceptions, of course) and anything longer doesn’t allow for easy addition of context.

  18. Hummmmm, I’m looking for a casual walking-round-the-garden camera, but like you I’ve never loved a Fuji so far.

    • This one might be worth a look…however knowing your garden, I’d want something with a zoom personally – G5X III?

      • I agree, but I’ve also never loved a 1 inch sensor. Maybe the Canon is an improvement on the various Sony rx100s Ive tried? Anyhow, what I feel I’m waiting for is someone to do a newer Leica X Vario.

  19. Thank you for the interesting review. The pictures you share in this articel are very nice. The one with the street and “ONLY” written is nearly vibrating for me.

  20. Ming, I know this has been asked before, but I live in a sunny country and most rear screens – camera or phone – are a pain to use during a good part of the day. They work perfectly in the late afternoon and the evening. Have you really used the XF10’s screen under strong sunlight? The XF10 would be my pick for a compact if I could trust the screen to be at least reasonably visible under the sun. Thanks for your help

  21. As a user of the Fuji X system, I am always looking for reviews of Fuji equipment. Thank you for sharing.

  22. Hope you don’t mind, but I posted the link to your review in the Fujifilm XF10 users group on facebook
    Pop along and join, we’d like your expertise and to see some of your pictures!

  23. I think you’ve singlehandedly moved the market for the FX10. Its price (in black) has gone up $30 at B&H — and they’re closed!

  24. Sivert Sørumgård says:

    Interesting review, Ming. I also thought about the AF speed that some people have criticized – perhaps there has been a firmware update that has improved it.

    Are the images above JPEGs more or less straight out of the camera, or have they been processed afterwards? Can the in-camera JPEG processing be re-applied – I mean, can you redo the in-camera processing using alternative JPEG profiles for the same image?

    • They’re processed RAW files. It might be possible to use SOOC JPEG but I haven’t yet been able to find a combination of settings that works for me.

      Reprocessing: I haven’t actually looked to be honest – and I’m on the road at the moment with different hardware. Will check when I return.

      • Sivert Sørumgård says:


        Another question if you don’t mind. What is your opinion on the image quality you get from a camera like this compared to the best smartphones? Disregarding the user interface, which is quite different of course. I would guess there are obvious differences imposed by physical characteristics (sensor size affecting dynamic range capabilities and low light handling, and correspondingly the lens size and its ability to control DOF through aperture settings) – and perhaps these factors alone, if considered important enough, indicate that the image quality will never be comparable. But still, the quality of images from a smartphone can sometimes be quite impressing. What do you think?

        • Honestly, the smartphone is not even close to APSC or M4/3 – 1” maybe, but only if you are talking about a very good smartphone vs a very poor 1”…that said, I actually think the smartphone UI is better in some cases.

  25. I am surprised at your opinion of autofocus speed. Other reviews complained about it being slow. I trust your opinion so I will look at the camera, which interested me before I read those other reviews.

  26. Thanks for the great review Ming. Was hesitating with getting CoolPix A (also read your old review!), XQ2 or XF10 to fit in my everyday jeans pocket (Quit smoking recently, so some extra space 😀 ) Most likely it’s the XF10 for now.

    • The XF10 is a huge step above them CP A, and the XQ2 trades lens flexibility for a much smaller sensor. If I really needed the extra reach and compactness, I’d be giving the G5X Mark III a long, hard look at the moment.

    • Kristian Wannebo says:

      I loved my XF1 while I had it, but the shutter broke twice within 3 years.
      Perhaps the G5 x II will be what I’ve been waiting for…

      • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

        For what it’s worth, Kristian – one of my cams is an older PowerShot – the G1 X Mark II. And since I bought it, I have almost given up on my Nikon 9700, although the Nikon does slip into a pocket and the PowerShot is slightly more bulky.
        The PowerShot has its own limitations, but then that’s true for EVERY bit of gear we get. On the other hand, for what it is, and what I use if for, it’s been easy, convenient, robust, reliable, and takes very good photos. And the newer versions can only be better.
        You do have to fight your way through the specs for the various different models, though, to match the one you’re looking at to your ow personal needs & style.

        • Kristian Wannebo says:

          Thanks, Jean Pierre,
          for your positive testimony on your Canon compact.
          The G5 x II does have “my” specs with an EVF. (I tried the Mark I, but that was hard to zoom precisely and manual focus didn’t work well enough.)
          I’m waiting for some serious opinions to emerge, especially on the lens, the first photos & reviews seem OK except right at the short end (which is to be expected – the long end is more important to me, and that is where some others are weaker).
          ( But I’m in no hurry, I’ll anyway wait for the first price drop; Nikon may have something up it’s sleeve according to rumors, and the Pan. LX10/15 may soon have a successor.)

          • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

            I’ve no issues with Canon on the lens quality of the PowerShot, and I imagine the more recent models would have even better lenses.
            I’ve made quite extensive use of it, photographing people’s pets – down to individual hairs, near their eyes and along their muzzles. A lot of this “I wanna better whatever” is utter crap. I do shoot with a D850 using the Otus 55mm, so I know what a good image looks like. And I’ve no complaints about the Canon, although it obviously wouldn’t do quite the stuff the D850/Otus combo can.
            Where it does drop off is my available light/night photography – there, I definitely prefer the larger format and the faster lens, even though it IS a fixed 55mm prime.

            • Kristian Wannebo says:

              Jean Pierre,
              I quite agree with you, especially on “I wanna better whatever”!

              I looked long at the G1 x II, but finally decided I wanted something more pocketable.

              Enter the G5 x II, with such a fast long zoom (5x) in such a thin 1″ sensor package, something *may* have to give.
              ( E.g. the thinner slower shorter zoom Canon G9 x is soft at the long end. The similar planned “pocket” 1″ Nikon DLs were about 1cm thicker, I guess for lens quality.)

              But according to some of the first reports the longer range G5 x II lens is even better at the long end than the (good enough) lens of the G5 x & G7 x. (They are the same speed and size and still Canon managed to find room for two more lens elements.)

              Now, it’s just that I’d *prefer* also my pocket camera to be good enough for almost out to the borders (borders, not corners) fairly crisp snow & ice photos at the middle and the long end of the lens – which admittedly is quite a lot to ask for with a long compact zoom (especially when diffraction makes a difference before 5.6).
              The G5 x II looks promising so far, and I’m willing to compromise on that if all my other boxes turn out to be ticked.

              • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

                I agree wholeheartedly. The only issues I’ve had with the G1 X II are the fact it’s not truly pocketable, that became even worse when I attached an ELV to overcome issues with backlighting on the rear screen, and the manual is hard to read/follow. So at times I took the Nikon S9700 (pocketable!), and to overcome the manual issues I’ve pretty much always had it on some form of AUTO setting.
                But there’s nothing wrong with the photos it produces.
                As for people who sneer at zooms, these modern zoom lenses are now MILES better than the ones we could get 20 years ago – the “sneerers” are only reading history books, they’re not looking at modern zooms.
                And to be honest, if I wasn’t putting money aside for three other things I want, I’d trade up from the G1 X II to the G5 X II in a snap. But I need a new scanner, a 24-70 F/2.8 and a SIGMA with a Foveon sensor – so I can’t really justify the trade up, when I already own a perfectly good G1 X II.

                • Kristian Wannebo says:

                  Aye, a Foveon sensor *is* tempting!
                  But so long as I don’t feel like being prepared for printing huge the M5 will have to do.
                  ( Maybe also some future Sigma ef will have one and also IBIS…)

                  [ In case you shouldn’t need the short end there’s also the Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4, check Dustin Abbott’s review.]

                  • I’m not sure a small foveon sensor is a good idea though, knowing how limited the large ones already are especially when it comes to low light performance…

                    • Kristian Wannebo says:

                      Thanks, Ming,
                      I was thinking of APS-C to FF,
                      like e.g. in a possible(?) future L-mount Sigma (ef +).
                      ( I *guess* Jean Pierre did too?)

                      Large ’nuff ? ( I couldn’t afford >FF.)

                      Apologies for hijacking this post so long!

                    • That would be an overall different sized camera/ size/ carrying proposition, no?

                    • Kristian Wannebo says:

                      Ming, (no reply button, so..)
                      > “That would be an overall different sized camera/ size/ carrying proposition, no?”

                      I just had the thought, that with Sigma on the L mount, there might be a future where an enthusiast could use the same lenses for a Bayer and a Foveon body.
                      ( Both, of course, with built-in IS with tilt.)

                    • I’d be surprised if there isn’t a FP-type body with just that in the works…

                  • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

                    I have the 70-200 f/2.8, so the 24-70 f/2.8 is a better fit (higher price – OUCH!)
                    The rumour is, that SIGMA is going to bring out a new FF Foveon based Quattro, with some form of IS (I know not what) and the sensor is to be around 85MP (Foveon), roughly equivalent to 150MP (Bayer). I don’t know how those figures work**, but having seen some great shots taken with existing Foveons, I have a serious urge to get one. (**Ming might be able to tell us)
                    And yes, I know they have poor low light performance – but I do all my low light stuff on the Nikons.
                    I just spotted your comments on cats – dogs are every bit as bad – I use the D500 for them, its AF is faster than the AF on the D850. Which is a puzzle – since the D850 is a far newer design. It’s missing things like that, that cost these camera behemoths their market!

                    • Pixel count: they’re adding up all of the layers. It’s not directly equivalent, though – more like Bayer develops 60% or so of what Foveon of equivalent output pixel count does, regardless of the number of photosites. I.e. you’d need a 50MP Bayer sensor to resolve the same as a Foveon sensor with a 30MP output size (but probably has somewhere between 60 and 90M photosites depending on how it’s configured). These numbers aren’t exactly fixed as Bayer pulls into the lead at higher ISOs as the Foveon sensors run into noise limitations in low light more quickly since the individual photosites themselves are smaller.

      • I think we still have one of these somewhere actually…

  27. Kristian Wannebo says:

    Ming, as usual with your gear articles, very few comments on your photos…

    It certainly looks as if you had great fun.

    That red photo!
    And the last one!
    The third from the end, I guess it’s the two yellow lights and the bluish windows that make it come so alive.
    The b/w chair, its shape and the play of curved and straight shadows is great fun!

    • Hmm…I think I need to shoot more brick walls, cats, bearded people and lattes! 😛

      On a more serious note, if you can’t make images you’re happy with out of a camera, there’s just no point in reviewing the thing at all – all it means is that it fundamentally fails as a photographic device.

      • Kristian Wannebo says:

        I could agree with cats…
        I grew up with cats – difficult to draw and needing lots of patience to photograph well.

        I think you nailed it, people adapt or not to different quirks of cameras.
        And if one adapts well the camera gets out of the way of the photography.

        In the old days craftsmen made their own tools to fit their hands…

        • These days, we have choice and Internet experts 😉

          • Kristian Wannebo says:

            So we have (or do we?) !

            The time it takes to acquire the expertise to differentiate between experts and “experts”,
            and to adapt to the limits of choice,
            is a boon to the market…
            ( ..even if one should be immune to GAS.)

            And cats are aloof to all this!

  28. I like your compositions Ming, but the ever going on shadows going totally black like with all Fujifilm cameras is maybe not my cup of tea. I was through 4 Fujifilm cameras and always had the same ‘problem’. I like the lower blacks, but spreaded over a broader tonal range instead of the abrupt shadown nuances turning into totally back.

    • Thanks Gerner. In this case the black shadows aren’t the result of the usual Fuji X-trans crushing but a personal stylistic choice 🙂 The XF10 runs a normal Bayer sensor.

  29. Risto Vainio says:

    I’ve been really pleased with my XF10 once I solved the lens cap issue with an adapter & hood kit and a protective filter.

  30. The joystick looks rather cool, actually. So does the whole camera. I briefly flirted with, and owned, the XF10’s predecessor, the X70, but found it fiddly and unnecessarily complicated in certain weird Fuji-specific ways; the XF10, in spite of its low, low, low price, actually looks like an improvement on the X70 in many ways. I would be seriously tempted if not for the slightly-larger-but-almost-pocketable compact I bought a few years ago – one you briefly owned yourself but didn’t pass muster with you – Canon’s G1x Mark III. I’ve been on an ongoing odyssey-like quest to find a superb high-quality almost-pocketable compact ever since my late (and still lamented) Lumix LX7 (Panasonic’s version of the D-Lux 6 – or is it the other way around?). I’ve made brief stops in Coolpix A territory (too Nikon-centric in its menus for me), in the original APS-C GR (a wonderful camera whose multi-layered and supposedly photographer-friendly menu system left me more bewildered than the complexity of my old Olympiii), as well as the X70, which I really wanted to like more than I did. But for my ways of shooting – and seeing the world – the G1xMk3 has given me a relatively simple set of shooting parameters (did I mention the logical and simple Canon menus?) but more importantly some remarkable image quality. The rap on it – having a supposedly too-slow-and-somehow ‘inferior’ zoom lens – has not borne out in my daily use: though it ain’t the fastest, I’ve done surprisingly decent work with in indoor available light situations. (And, to my immense surprise, the relatively small EVF turns out to be quite useful.) BUT – coming back to your impressions of the XF10 …. it actually would be at the top of my small modern-replacement-for-my-LX7 list…if I wasn’t so happy with my G1x. It’s a pleasure reading your words, Ming – and not merely appreciating the images.

    • I thought it would be a step back since it has lost the aperture and shutter dials, but landed up being very pleasant surprised. The G1X III was just too slow in operation for me – focus hesitated, there was the cap to deal with, lens to extend etc. Though the XF10 has a cap, if you put the camera in the hard case you don’t need it – and startup time and focus are both fairly negligible. I also found the files somewhat lacking bite and high ISO extension compared to the other APS-C cameras.

      The LX5/7 were pretty good for their time, but in hindsight the sensors are rather…limited. Still, they shot well and the bright lenses afforded a much larger envelope than one would expect for something effectively limited to ISO 400.

  31. “GR belt holster”? Do you have a link for that? Thx for the review, Ming.

  32. Overall image quality better than that of the 24MP sensor in the D3500? That says a lot. Is there no way to add an eye level viewfinder? Maybe an optical finder and Superglue? Do you find the screen adequate for daylight outdoor shooting?

  33. Very tempting. I’ve been wanting to pull the trigger on a Ricoh griii but now you’ve got me thinking

  34. Perhaps Ming, you should take a look at the X-T3. You might see it in a new light now?

  35. Was waiting for your words about this Fuji as I was eye on this camera. People complain about autofocus speed. Any issues?

  36. Ian Drury says:

    Great and honest review as usual, my own preference for a large sensor compact in the original Panasonic LX100, not that pocketable really, not a large sensor either, but it works for me ! I’ll look at the Fuji with interest. Thanks again for your thoughtful words and inspiration.

  37. jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

    Having just been subjected to some fiery prose about GAS and high end gear, and heretical comments from mature professionals suggesting – as an ultimate act of blasphemy! – that it’s entirely possible to take a good photograph with a 200 pound (AKA$500) pocketable camera, I found your article absorbing, refreshing, fascinating. Thanks for sharing your experiences with us!
    I have a similar relationship with a 1″ sensor Canon PowerShot, with a largely incomprehensible & inaccessible online manual that is barely possible to download and print in legible form, and a menu system calculated to drive you nuts. But if you just want “a good photo”, it’s amazingly easy to use in mostly auto ways, and a delight to shoot with. And even though its sensor ain’t “modern” any longer, and is only around 20MP, it produces damn fine photos, used sensibly and within the limits such a beast imposes.

  38. I upgraded from GR to GRiii and have no regrets. The fears I had about poor controls or poor battery life have been put to rest. I can get about the same number of shots per charge, and USB charging pretty much removes any range anxiety. The stabilizer is a definite improvement for the type of shots I usually do and I really like the ability to select the AF point from the touch screen.

    AF performance is pretty good, face detections is reliable and works from a good distance away. In really low light AF can be really slow, but so far haven’t encountered a situation where that held me back. Sensor performance is really good, roughly a 1 stop improvement over the 2013 model at ISO3200 and ISO6400. Lens performance seems equally good as the previous versions, although the new one seems to exhibit more vignetting wide open. I need to test this side by side to say for sure.

    Overall I think the price is justified for what the camera offers. Even more pocketable than the previous iterations, wider shooting envelope and improved performance pretty much across the board. I was lucky to find a second-hand unit with an extra battery for 690 euros, which I think was a really good price.

    • I have the GR mark III also. It’s a fantastic little camera. Would be perfect if it had an electronic eye level finder, but is quite useable with the live view or an optical finder. Image quality is far, far better than the original APS-C GR. Shot about 1/2 of the photos on our trip to Wales on the GR III and half on Leica M-P. They are quite equivalent in quality.

  39. Looks like a better use of my cash than upgrading my iPhone8 for an Iphone 11 Pro! Looks to be more “pocketable” than by D5600 that seems to collect dust as of late. Thanks for the inspiration; I definitely need it!

    • I was geniunely surprised by the big jump in image quality of this one.

      • Gerrit Bodhi says:

        “this one” means the Fuji or the iPhone 11 Pro?

        • The Fuji. The iPhone 11 doesn’t look substantially different in quality to its predecessors; when viewing the whole image at typical output sizes, it looks great, but at the pixel level it’s still mush. The Fuji is pretty close to the Z7 (which is pretty much as good as it gets) at the pixel level.

          • Did you try shooting the Fuji in low light and indoors? I’m always drawn to Fuji’s designs and colours, but I love shooting at night and when I priced out fast APS-C glass, I was in near FF territory.

            • Yes, and it’s pretty impressive considering it’s APS-C; at the pixel level ISO for ISO, similar to my Z7, but with fewer pixels and no IS. Of course this one doesn’t price into FF territory since it has a fixed lens…


  1. […] series was shot with a Nikon Z7, 24-70 Z and my custom JPEG picture controls, and a Fuji XF10 and Workflow […]

  2. […] series was shot with a Nikon Z7 and my custom JPEG picture controls, and a Fuji XF10 and Photoshop Workflow […]

  3. […] series was shot with a Fuji XF10 and processed with Photoshop Workflow […]

  4. […] series was shot with a Nikon Z7 (with my custom SOOC JPEG picture controls) and a Fuji XF10 (processed with Workflow […]

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