I rented the Fujifilm X100V and loved it! But is it enough to upgrade from my current Fujifilm X100F? That is the question I’ll be addressing here in this post.
With everything going on around COVID-19 I knew I’d have some extra time on my hands and decided to make the most of it. I wanted to try something new with photography as I had kind of burnt out shooting local landscapes/cityscape shots. Enter Lensrentals.com! And a brand new temporary toy to play with.
*Some links below, contain affiliate links. I will see a small commission if links are used to purchase items.
New Camera Toy
That new “toy” was the recently released Fujifilm X100V. I’ve had the Fujifilm X100F for almost two years and love the camera. It fits right in your pocket, produces amazing images and is the perfect travel sized camera.
Once I decided on renting the camera I was surprised to see Lenrentals.com had it available within the week. I’ve rented through them twice before, a wide angle lens for my first camera: Nikon D3100. Then again when I first tested out my X100F before deciding to buy it a few months later.
They have treated me well and I really like the fact that you can use nearby FedEx delivery stores for shipping. This was huge for me, living in an apartment, I don’t trust having a camera dropped off in the main lobby.
Enough of that, I will be writing a separate post about them since I actually got accepted into their affiliate program. Full disclosure, I paid for this specific rental out of my own pocket and they did not sponsor this post.
But…..I do now have an affiliate link and a 15% off discount code, so if you’re looking to test out the Fujifilm X100V or whatever other camera/lens available, use my affiliate link https://bit.ly/2JTQxI2 and discount code “DAP15”. I will see a little bit of a commission if that link is used, so Thank You, but also enjoy that rental!
After unboxing the super protective rental case it came in and handling the camera for a second, I immediately felt it was a little lighter. But not a cheap feeling, just overall lighter. Not sure it was a different manufacturing location, different build materials or internal components.
Then I noticed the ISO/Shutter wheel was a little larger and operated a little differently than the X100F. On that model, when adjusting for ISO the selector wheel automatically brings itself down once released. With the X100V it stays raised until you push it down on the proper ISO setting.
Not gonna lie, my ISO stays on ‘Auto’ a lot of times when shooting with the X100F so I never really had a complaint with it the way it was.
The shutter release button itself was a little different as well, but couldn’t really place how so. It didn’t look all that bigger or smaller or different in shape. Just different.
But what I did notice was no D-Pad!!! After shooting with the X100F and getting accustomed to it on that model, this was definitely a noticeable change. Fujifilm did keep the joystick for menu/focus selection but they also made the LCD a touchscreen with swipe features to essentially replace the D-Pad.
I ended up turning this feature off pretty quickly and just used the joystick. I wanted to jump right into shooting with the camera and the swipe feature wasn’t something that was gonna convince me to upgrade. So I simply used the joystick.
Shooting with the Fujifilm X100V
It was pretty easy jumping into shooting with the X100V since I was so familiar with the X100F. But there were a few big differences I noticed.
First, I noticed that flippable LCD screen. Or…at least remembered to check that out. It is so smooth and integrated into the new design I actually completely forgot about the feature when I first unboxed it.
But now, well aware of the flip screen I took a couple close to the ground shots or weird angles that I didn’t want to kneel down for the shot. The flippy screen worked really well and the LCD display is still super crisp.
The flip screen only swivels up and down, not off to the side like some popular vlogging cameras. But for street and general travel photographers, it’s more than enough.
Next I noticed Fujifilm improved the appearance of sun flares (sunbursts, star busts, whatever) over the X100F. I’m a big fan of the bursts that come from lights when shooting with larger f/ stops. My Nikon D750 produces amazing bursts but I noticed my X100F was always pretty lackluster.
So high five too Fujifilm on that.
I also feel the dynamic range was improved. Both on what I could see on the screen as well as in Lightroom when processing the RAW file in post.
I could actually see a visible difference on the flip screen when I changed the dynamic range in the camera from 100 to 200 or 400.
The RAW files definitely had more play to them. I could boost more colors from the highlights and recover more details from the shadows without the image looking over processed.
But the biggest improvement I noticed was the ability to get sharp images when shooting below f/2.8. I always hated shooting single objects wide open on my X100F, because they always appeared soft.
I read that Fujifilm did that on purpose to create pleasing portraits, but can’t say that is 100% fact. Either way, it’s been changed. Or improved. However you want to look at it.
Another minor difference that took me a few attempts to adjust to, was the new position of the ‘Play’ button. On the X100F, it’s the first of the three buttons besides the LCD screen. But with the X100V, it’s in the middle of the three buttons. I am sure Fuji had their reasoning for the move, it just threw me off a couple times. But otherwise no biggie.
Few More Sample Pics
Overall, my tests with the Fujifilm X100V weren’t super extensive. I didn’t get to play with video recording or dive into that new touch screen. Nor did I get any people shots like portraits, families or street photography due to COVID-19. (My selfie only counts so much)
With that said, even if I had gotten to deep dive into the X100V, I still don’t think it would have been enough to upgrade from the X100F. The X100F is a mostly perfect travel/street photography/fun camera for me. It’s not my money-maker or professional camera services provider.
Oh, and the camera does have the ability to become weather resistant. But add that to the list of things I didn’t test out. And by “does have the ability” I mean you’d have to purchase a few additional items on top of what you already paid for with the camera.
Here’s a YouTube video showing all of what’s needed:
I feel if you were in the market for a travel camera, don’t already have any of the X100 cameras, and price wasn’t much of a factor. I’d recommend choosing the X100V over the X100F mainly due to the flip screen and the ability to get solid use of a f/2 aperture.
All things considered, it’s definitely a solid upgrade from the X100F but the X100F checked so many boxes and did almost exactly everything I asked of it that I don’t quite need an upgrade.
Love you Fujifilm! Keeping rocking out with awesome cameras!
Looks like my next rental camera will be a GFX 50R, so be on the lookout for posts on that! I’ve never shot with a medium format camera, that will be fun.