With top and bottom plates milled from single pieces of aluminium, the X100V is a tougher camera than 2017’s previous model, the X100F. And the new sensor and processor combination combine to make the X100V a more capable and better performing camera than its predecessor.
Increased processing speed has given the X100V near-professional 4K video recording capabilities, while improvements to the viewfinder and monitor screens make it much nicer to use. The lack of any kind of stabilisation is less problematic than it might otherwise be, thanks to excellent high ISO performance.
The redesigned lens improves edge and corner sharpness, while autofocusing is faster, more versatile and more reliable.
Travellers and street photographers will find the X100V ticks a lot of boxes, as will professional photographers looking for a rugged ‘spare’ to slip into their bags in case of problems with their main camera.
The X100V is the fifth-generation model in Fujifilm’s popular X100 Series of compact, fixed-lens cameras, which began in 2011 with the original X100. The series has evolved over time without making huge changes to its rangefinder styling and the latest model retains the compact size that made the original camera so popular with travellers and street photographers. Accumulated improvements bring the latest model right up-to-date for today’s buyers.
Angled view of the X100V camera, silver version. (Source: Fujifilm.)
Weatherproof sealing makes its first appearance in an X100 Series camera, although to take advantage of it you’ll need the optional AR-X100 adapter ring and PRF-49 protection filter to weather-seal the lens. (The AR-X100 adapter will also be required for fitting the lens hood.) Like earlier models, the X100V is offered in all-black and silver-and-black colours. But unlike the X-Pro 3, both colours are identically priced.
Who’s it For?
While not exactly ‘compact’ in size, the X100V is only slightly larger and heavier than the original X100 and small enough to be slipped into a jacket pocket. This will attract photographers who want a ‘take anywhere’ camera that offers superior performance and versatility. Its APS-C sized sensor provides a significant quality advantage over the tiny chips in smartphones for important photos and it’s a lot more versatile.
Top view of the X100V camera, silver version. (Source: Fujifilm.)
Rear view of the X100V camera, silver version. (Source: Fujifilm.)
The traditional controls, shown in the product images above, have barely changed since the first model in the series. They will appeal to users who cut their teeth on film cameras without necessarily intimidating younger users who grew up in the digital era.
The tilting rear LCD touchscreen supports most of the familiar adjustments, including touch AF and touch shooting. Improvements to video functionality put the X100V on a par with the latest models in Fujifilm’s X-series.
The tilting LCD touchscreen on the X100V camera, silver version. (Source: Fujifilm.)
Travellers and street photographers will find the X100V ticks a lot of boxes, while professional photographers looking for a rugged ‘spare’ to slip into their bags in case of problems with their main camera could find it meets their needs, particularly if they shoot the occasional video. Unfortunately, no stabilisation is provided, either in the camera or lens or as digital IS, which means care is required when using slow shutter speeds and capturing movie clips.
Very few features in the X100V are actually new per se but a number are new to the X100 series. Included in that collection are the changes to the camera body, such as weatherproof sealing and the introduction of a tilting, touchscreen monitor as well as a new and larger hybrid viewfinder that introduces OLED technology.
Sensor resolution has been increased, thanks to the use of the 26-megapixel X-Trans CMOS sensor and X Processor 4 combination, which are also used in the X-T3, X-T4 and X-Pro3 cameras. The native ISO range is also expanded, with the lower value going down to ISO 160, although the upper end remains at ISO 12800. Expansion down to ISO 80 and up to ISO 51200 is possible.
Unfortunately, the X100V also inherits the bizarre ISO controls provided in the X-Pro3 and outlined in our review of that camera. And the user manual is equally unhelpful but we found that setting the ISO dial (which is accessed by pulling up the shutter speed dial) to C allows the front command dial to be used to adjust the entire ISO range.
Continuous shooting speeds have been increased from 8 fps in the previous model to 11 fps. The buffer memory can accommodate up to 38 JPEG frames or 17 RAF.RAW files. Reducing the burst rate to 8 fps increases this capacity to 76 JPEGs or 18 raw files. The X100V includes a 1.25x crop mode that supports frame rates up to 30 fps with the electronic shutter with seemingly ‘unlimited’ buffer capacity.
The new sensor and processor have meant video capabilities are similar to those offered by the X-Pro3 and include 4K/30p recording, a big step up from the FHD limit of the previous model. Resolutions, frame rates and bitrates for recordings are the same as the X-Pro 3’s but recording times are reduced, with 4K limited to 10 minutes and Full HD to 15 minutes.
As in the X-Pro3, movie mode must be selected via the Drive/Delete button. Interframe noise reduction is available with 4K (and DCI) recording modes and the F-Log profile can be used to achieve a soft gamma curve for subsequent editing. As in the X-Pro3, the AF-assist LED on the front panel and the LED indicator on the rear panel can be used as tally lamps to show movies are being recorded.
Focus tracking sensitivity is adjustable across a five-step range, along with AF speed across +/-5 steps. Face and eye detection are available and the camera can be connected via HDMI to external displays or output to external recorders in 4:2:2 10-bit format.
Peaking and zebra displays are available and time coding is supported. The camera also includes a wind filter and low-cut filter for reducing the influence of external noise on movie soundtracks. Interval recording for time-lapse movies is also supported.
The 425-point AF system (up from 325 points on the previous model) is the same as the system used in the X-Pro3 and offers improvements to face and eye detection as well as tracking performance. By default, the camera uses a 13 x 9 array of 117 points in single point AF mode, but the entire 17 x 25 point array is available. The AF range limiter, which is also provided in the X-Pro3, lets users restrict focus to a preset range or choose two objects in a scene and limit focus to the distance between them.
Focus checking is available through focus distance and depth of field indicators which are accessed via the SCREEN SETUP > DISP. CUSTOM SETTING function in the menu. In single AF mode, pressing the rear command dial magnifies the centre of the frame, while rotating the dial adjusts the degree of magnification. The joystick is used to select the area for scrutiny. In addition, if ON is selected for AF/MF SETTING>FOCUS CHECK, the camera will automatically zoom in on the selected area when the focus ring on the lens is turned.
The optical design of the X100V’s lens showing the two aspherical elements that improve its performance. (Source: Fujifilm.)
The 23mm f/2.0 lens has been improved with a new optical design that includes two aspherical elements (shown in the diagram above). This results in improvements to close focusing performance, particularly with respect to edge and corner sharpness at wide aperture settings.
As before, the 23mm focal length with the APS-C sensor provides an effective focal length equivalent to a 35mm focal length on a 35mm camera. The menu provides two ‘Digital Tele-converter’ settings that crop the frame to cover focal lengths equivalent to 50mm and 70mm in 35mm format. Resolution is interpolated up to the full 6240 x 4160 pixel image size in each case.
Because the physical dimensions of the lens remain the same as in previous models, the WCL-X100II wide-angle andTCL-X100 II telephoto conversions lenses remain usable with the new camera. The X100V also retains the built-in ND filter provided in previous models to enable more flexibility for using wide apertures in bright ambient lighting.
The hybrid (optical/electronic) viewfinder and LCD monitor are the same as those on the X-Pro3, and both are improvements on the previous model. The EVF is larger with roughly 30% higher resolution and uses OLED technology, rather than LCD. It also has a higher eyepoint and wider dioptric adjustment range.
Because the X100V’s lens is relatively small, it doesn’t intrude significantly on the OVF as we found happened with the X-Pro3. An ERF (Electronic Rangefinder) function can be used to display a pop-up window in the lower right corner of OVF frame that shows the view covered by the EVF. This makes it easy to gauge exposure and colour while using the OVF.
The ERF can display a digital split image in the centre of the frame or a digital microprism to assist manual focusing. Focus peak highlighting is also available.
Touchscreen controls have been added to the LCD monitor, making the X100V the first in the series to have it. Its resolution has also been increased from 1.04 million dots to 1.62 million dots and it tilts out and up through 90 degrees and down through approximately 30 degrees for waist-level or above-the-head shooting.
The touch controls can be used for a new ‘Movie Silent Control’ function on page 4 of the movie menu, which disables camera dials to make movie settings adjustable via the touchscreen monitor. This prevents camera noises from being captured inadvertently in movie soundtracks.
The 2.5 mm microphone port carries over from previous models but the USB port uses the new USB-C standard, like the X-Pro3. Also like the X-Pro3, the battery is charged via the USB-C cable, which takes approximately five hours for the initial charge.
Wireless connections are the same as in the X-Pro3 and include Bluetooth Ver 4.2 (Bluetooth low energy) plus IEEE802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi. Playback options are also the same as in the X-Pro3 with two buttons: one accessing the standard playback settings and the other the display modes. As is usual, no software is supplied; the applications are downloadable from the product’s support page on Fujifilm’s website.
Our Imatest testing revealed the review camera to be a slightly better performer than the X-Pro3. The highest JPEG resolution was obtained at f/4.0 but much of the aperture range delivered resolution that was comfortably above expectations with measurements made near the centre of the frame.
Significantly, however, we obtained resolutions that were above expectations from f/3.2 through to f/5.6, which is impressive. Resolution figures for RAF.RAW files were somewhat higher across a slightly wider aperture range, as shown in the graph of our test results below.
Resolution held up well across the camera’s ISO range, with the upper end extensions being the main disappointment. However, even there, results were better than expected and similar to those we obtained from the X-Pro3. The graph below shows the results of our tests.
Not unexpectedly, the interpolated JPEGs recorded with the Digital Tele-converter settings showed reduced image quality, with traces of softening creeping in at the 50mm setting and artefacts emerging at 70mm. Neither is severe enough to seriously affect the usability of the resulting files and both can be improved by judicious unsharp masking.
Long exposures were effectively noise-free up to ISO 12800 after which noise and slight softening (due to noise-reduction processing) became visible. Images appeared marginally sharper than similar shots taken with the X-Pro3, probably because the lens in the X100V is ideally matched to the sensor. As with the X-Pro3, colours remained constant throughout the sensitivity range.
Flash exposures were relatively even throughout the ISO range, indicating the camera’s auto exposure system was a competent performer. However, contrast and apparent sharpness began to deteriorate from about ISO 800 on and by ISO 12800 flash shots were a little flat. A very slight magenta cast also crept in with the two highest ISO settings.
Lateral chromatic aberration was effectively negligible for both JPEGs (which are auto-corrected in the camera) and uncorrected RAF.RAW files. Graphs showing our measurements for both file types are shown below.
Both rectilinear distortion and vignetting are corrected automatically in JPEGs so we resorted to RAF.RAW files to determine their extent. Both were minor enough to be irrelevant to most potential users of the camera and very easy to correct.
White balance performance was similar to the results we obtained from the X-Pro3, which isn’t surprising since both cameras have the same sensor and processor. The main difference between them is that the X100V has a built-in flash, while the X-Pro3 doesn’t.
The auto setting produced close-to-neutral colours under fluorescent and flash lighting but failed to eliminate the orange cast from incandescent illumination or warm-toned LED lighting.
There’s no preset for flash or LED but the tungsten preset came close to removing the warm casts of both incandescent and LED lighting although it tended to over-correct with the latter. The three fluorescent pre-sets delivered different colour biases, none of them capable of producing a cast-free result – or even coming close to the natural balance produced by the Auto WB setting.
The camera provides plenty of manual WB adjustments, including three Custom settings, Kelvin temperature adjustments and nine steps of manual tweaking on the magenta/green and blue/amber axes. Use of these tools delivered cast-free shots with all types of lighting.
Video quality was, if anything, better than we obtained from the X-Pro3, again largely attributable to the lens/sensor combination. The camera did a good job of rendering image tones and coped well with scenes that had a very wide brightness range. It was relatively easy to keep steady during hand-held shooting, despite a lack of stabilisation.
Autofocusing and auto exposure adjustments were noticeably better than we found with the X-Pro3 and the camera appeared to be more capable of re-adjusting when subjects moved into and out of the main focused zone. Audio quality was similar to the X-Pro3’s and respectable for the internal microphones. The ability to add external microphones would be useful if better quality was desired.
Our timing tests were carried out with a 64GB SDHC I U3 memory card, which claims read/write speeds of 95 and 90 MB/s, respectively. The review camera took just over half a second to power-up and shut down almost instantly.
Capture lag averaged 0.2 seconds when the shot was captured with the monitor screen flipped down. Shot-to-shot times averaged 0.25 seconds. Image processing speeds were slightly faster than the X-Pro3’s, with JPEG files taking approximately one second and uncompressed RAF.RAW files averaging 1.5 seconds. RAW+JPEG pairs took an average of 1.8 seconds to process.
Using the electronic shutter with the high-speed continuous shooting mode, the review camera recorded 110 1.5x cropped JPEG images in 6.7 seconds without slowing. This works out at approximately 16.5 frames/second, which is somewhat less than the claimed 30 frames/second the camera was set for. It took 15.5 seconds to process this burst.
When raw file capture was selected with the electronic shutter, the capture rate was reduced to approximately three frames/second but we were able to continue recording for 8.5 seconds with no sign of hesitation. Processing this burst took 10.9 seconds.
With the mechanical shutter selected in the high-speed continuous shooting mode, the review camera recorded 51 full-resolution JPEG images in 5.1 seconds before the first signs of hesitation. This works out at 10 frames/second, which is slightly below the specified 11 fps. It took 6.7 seconds to process this burst.
Shooting uncompressed RAF.RAW frames with the mechanical shutter filled the buffer at 29 frames, which were recorded in 3.3 seconds, a frame rate of roughly 8.8 fps. Combining compressed raw frames with high-resolution JPEGs reduced the buffer capacity to 25 frames, which were recorded in 3.8 seconds, a frame rate of just over 6.5 fps. Each of these bursts was processed in approximately 12 seconds.
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Image sensor: 23.5 x 15.6 mm X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor with 26.1 megapixels effective; primary colour filter
Image processor: X Processor 4
A/D processing: 14-bit
Lens: Fujinon 23mm f/2.0 lens (35mm equivalent in 35mm format)
Conversion lens: WIDE / TELE / OFF
Digital tele-converter: 35mm, 50mm, 70mm equivalent in 35mm format
Aperture range: f/2.0-f/16 in 1/3EV steps (controlled with 9-blade iris diaphragm)
Image formats: Stills – JPEG (DCF / Exif 2.3), RAF.RAW, RAW+JPEG; Movies – MOV (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264) with Linear PCM audio
Image Sizes: Stills – 3:2 aspect: 6240 x 4160, 4416 x 2944, 3120 x 2080; 16:9 aspect: 6240 x 3512, 4416 x 2488, 3120 x 1760; 1:1 aspect: 4160 x 4160, 2944 x 2944, 2080 x 2080; Panorama – L: 9600 x 1440, M: 6400 x 1440; Movies: DCI 4K and 4K UHD both at 30/25/24p, up to 10 min. Full HD 2048 x 1080 and 1920 x 1080 at 60p, 50p, 30p, 25p or 24p up to 15 min; High-speed FHD 120/100p at up to 6 min
Shutter type (speed range): Lens shutter with Mechanical + Electronic modes (Mechanical – 30 to 1/4000 seconds plus Bulb to 60 min.; Electronic – 30 to 1/32000 seconds plus Bulb to 1 sec.)
Self-timer: 2 or 10 seconds delay
Interval timer: Yes (Setting: Interval, Number of shots, Starting time)
Image Stabilisation: None
Exposure Compensation: +/- 5EV (in 1/3 EV steps), with exposure compensation dial: +/-2EV (in 1/3 EV steps) for movies
Bracketing: AE Bracketing (Frames: 2, 3, 5, 7, 9 Step: by 1/3EV step, up to +/-3EV steps), Film simulation bracketing (Any 3 types of film simulation selectable), Dynamic Range Bracketing (100%, 200%, 400%), ISO sensitivity Bracketing (+/-1/3EV, +/-2/3EV, +/-1EV), White Balance Bracketing (+/-1, +/-2, +/-3), Focus Bracketing (AUTO, MANUAL)
ND filter: Yes (4 stops)
Focus system/range: 425 point Intelligent Hybrid AF (TTL contrast AF / TTL phase detection AF); range: 10 cm to infinity
Focus area selection: Single point AF: EVF / LCD: 13×9 / 25×17 (Changeable size of AF frame), Zone AF: 3×3 / 5×5 / 7×7 from 117 areas on 13×9 grid, Wide/Tracking AF: (up to 18 areas) AF-S: Wide / AF-C: Tracking; All
Exposure metering/control: TTL 256-zone evaluative metering with Multi Pattern, Centre Weighted and Spot modes
Shooting modes: Program AE, Aperture-priority AE, Shutter-priority AE, Manual exposure
Film Simulation modes: 17 modes (PROVIA/Standard, Velvia/Vivid, ASTIA/Soft, Classic Chrome, PRO Neg.Hi, PRO Neg.Std, Black & White, Black & White+Ye Filter, Black & White+R Filter, Black & White+G Filter, Sepia, ACROS, ACROS+Ye Filter, ACROS+R Filter, ACROS+G Filter, ETERNA/Cinema, Classic Neg) Monochromatic Colour)
Dynamic range settings: Stills: AUTO, 100%, 200%, 400%; ISO restriction (DR100%: No limit, DR200%: ISO320 or more, DR400%: ISO640 or more); Movies: 100%, 200%, 400%; ISO restriction (DR100%: No limit, DR200%: ISO320 or more, DR400%: ISO640 or more)
Filter options: Toy camera, Miniature, Pop color, High-key, Low-key, Dynamic tone, Soft focus, Partial color (Red / Orange / Yellow / Green / Blue / Purple)
Other in-camera adjustments: Clarity (+/-5 steps), HDR (AUTO, 200%, 400%, 800%, PLUS), Grain effect (Roughness: STRONG, WEAK, OFF Size: LARGE, SMALL), Colour Chrome effect (Strong, Weak, Off), Colour Chrome blue (Strong, Weak, Off)
ISO range: Auto (ISO 160-12800) with 3 programmable ranges, ISO 160-12800 selectable in 1/3 EV steps; Expansion to ISO 80, ISO100 and ISO 25600, ISO 51200 available
White balance: Automatic Scene recognition, Custom1~3, Colour temperature selection (2500K~10000K), Preset: Daylight, Shade, Fluorescent (x3), Incandescent, Underwater
Flash: Built-in GN 4.4 flash
Flash modes/range: TTL MODE (Flash Auto, Standard, Slow Sync. 1st Curtain, 2nd Curtain), Manual, Commander, OFF; 30cm to 7.4m at ISO1600
Sequence shooting: Max. 11 shots/sec. with mechanical shutter, 30 fps with electronic shutter and 1.25x crop 3.0 fps also available
Buffer memory depth: 38 JPEGs, 17 raw files at 11 fps
Storage Media: SD, SDHC, SDXC memory cards; UHS-I compatible
Viewfinder: Hybrid Reverse Galilean OVF with electronic bright frame display plus 0.5 inch OLED EVF (4:3) with approx. 3.690,000 dots, 16.8 mm eyepoint, 0.66x magnification, dioptre adjustment: -4 to+2, built-in eye sensor
LCD monitor: Tilting 3.0 inch, 3:2 aspect ratio colour touchscreen LCD with 1,620,000 dots
Interface terminals/communications: USB Type-C (USB3.1 Gen1), HDMI Micro connector (Type D), 2.5 mm microphone/shutter release input; Bluetooth Ver 4.2 (Bluetooth low energy), Wi-Fi IEEE802.11b/g/n
Power supply: NP-W126S Li-ion battery; CIPA rated for approx. 50 / 420 frames (EVF / OVF Normal Mode) per charge or 45 minutes of video recording
Dimensions (wxhxd): 128.0 x 74.8 x 53.3 mm
Weight:478 grams (with battery and memory card)
Distributor: Fujifilm Australia; 1800 226 355; www.fujifilm.com.au
Based on JPEG files.
Based on RAF.RAW files converted into 16-bit TIFF format with Adobe Camera Raw.
Vignetting at f/2.0.
Auto white balance with incandescent lighting.
Auto white balance with fluorescent lighting.
Auto white balance with warm-toned LED lighting.
Auto white balance with flash lighting.
30-second exposure at f/2.8, ISO 80.
20-second exposure at f/2.8, ISO 160.
10-second exposure at f/5.6, ISO 1600.
3.1-second exposure at f/5.6, ISO 6400.
3.1-second exposure at f/8, ISO 12800.
2.9-second exposure at f/11, ISO 25600.
1.5-second exposure at f/11, ISO 51200.
Flash exposure at ISO 80, 1/60 second at f/2.0.
Flash exposure at ISO 160, 1/60 second at f/2.0.
Flash exposure at ISO 1600, 1/60 second at f/2.0.
Flash exposure at ISO 6400, 1/105 second at f/2.8.
Flash exposure at ISO 12800, 1/160 second at f/3.2.
Flash exposure at ISO 25600, 1/220 second at f/4.0.
Flash exposure at ISO 51200, 1/350 second at f/4.5.
ISO 160, 1/640 second at f/8.
50mm digital zoom, ISO 160, 1/500 second at f/8.
70mm digital zoom, ISO 160, 1/400 second at f/8.
Close-up, ISO 160, 1/3500 second at f/2.
Close-up with 70mm digital zoom, ISO 160, 1/3000 second at f/2.
Aperture comparisons with close-ups. Top: ISO 200, 1/1300 second at f/2; Bottom: ISO 200, 1/90 second at f/8.
ISO 400, 1/8 second at f/6.4.
ISO 200, 1/28 second at f/8.
Contre-jour lighting auto DRO setting; ISO 640, 1/1700 second at f/8.
ISO 160, 1/170 second at f/8.
Crop from the above image at 100% magnification.
DRO setting 200%; ISO 400, 1/640 second at f/7.1.
DRO setting 200%; ISO 640, 1/800 second at f/8.
ISO 3200, 1/220 second at f/3.6.
ISO 320, 1/240 second at f/3.6.
ISO 200, 1/220 second at f/5.6.
ISO 400, 1/250 second at f/5.
ISO 320, 1/80 second at f/4.5.
ISO 160, 1/250 second at f/5.6.
ISO 320, 1/300 second at f/4.5.
ISO 400, 1/240 second at f/5.
Still frame from 4K 17:9 video clip (4096 x 2160 pixels) recorded at 25p, 200Mbps.
Still frame from 4K 17:9 video clip (4096 x 2160 pixels) recorded at 25p, 100Mbps.
Still frame from 4K 16:9 video clip (3840 x 2160 pixels) recorded at 25p, 200Mbps.
Still frame from 4K 16:9 video clip (3840 x 2160 pixels) recorded at 25p, 100Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD 17:9 video clip (2048 x 1080 pixels) recorded at 50p, 200Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD 17:9 video clip (2048 x 1080 pixels) recorded at 50p, 100Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD 17:9 video clip (2048 x 1080 pixels) recorded at 25p, 200Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) video clip recorded at 50p/200Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD 16:9 video clip (1920 x 1080 pixels) recorded at 50p/100Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) video clip recorded at 25p/200Mbps.
Still frame from Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) video clip recorded at 25p/100Mbps.
RRP: AU$2349; US$1399
- Build: 9.0
- Ease of use: 8.6
- Autofocusing: 8.8
- Image quality JPEG: 9.0
- Image quality RAW: 9.0
- Video quality: 9.0