Fujifilm X-S1 - is it worth buying

Discussion in 'Superzoom Salon' started by hannahntilly, May 12, 2014.

  1. hannahntilly

    hannahntilly SC Regular

    109
    Apr 13, 2012
    Surrey, UK
    Peter
    I've noticed that the X-S1 is being heavily discounted in the UK currently to about £250. That's about 1/3 of the introduction price.

    I have a couple of the older m4/3 bodies including a G1 and my longest focal length is the 14-45mm zoom. Not sure if I'd be better off getting a long zoom for my m4/3 body - maybe a 45-200 or 100-300. However, these are retailing at £250 and £420 currently and only the latter would give equivalent range.

    I'm a photographer of limited means so value is important to me and I like a bargain (together with the best image quality for my £££s). The other downside might be the size of the Fuji. I'm keen on smaller cameras. Would anyone with experience of the XS-1 care to comment? I'm more than happy with X10 image samples I've seen in reviews and on forums so would be happy if the X-S1 is indeed similar Thanks,
     
  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I think it comes down to which trade-offs are acceptable to you.

    The IQ from a Lumix 100-300 or Oly 75-300 is definitely a step above what the Fuji can give you.

    But not needing to change lenses is also a plus. When I originally had the X-S1, I was dissatsified with the IQ in relation to the m43 cameras and couldn't justify keeping it. I no longer have a m43 set-up and recently picked up a Fuji HS50EXR (a different superzoom) because I decided I could live with the hit to IQ, but wanted some tele reach on a budget.

    If you've seen the samples from the X10 and X-S1 and are happy with them, it's a great all-rounder.....especially at the recent price levels. But if you're tempted to pixel peep and don't mind changing lenses (which may not be an issue if you shoot with 2 bodies), I think the results with the m43 cameras are appreciable better.
     
  3. Biro

    Biro SC All-Pro

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    Luke is right about image quality being better from a micro four-thirds set up. But you sound like you're already okay with the IQ from the Fuji X10 and the results from the X-S1 are indeed similar. Just remember that the X-S1 isn't a smallish camera. It's pretty much the size of a small DSLR. But not having to switch lenses can be very important in the right kind of situation. And the X-S1's manual zoom beats the toggle-switch affair on many other bridge cameras. I'm kind of interested in Fuji's latest bridge camera effort, the S1. But that's more money than a leftover X-S1.

    EDIT: Luke, how is the HS50EXR working out? What can you tell me about IQ? Better than the X-S1? Time and sensor technology march on...
     
  4. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Steve,
    I'll let you know when I know more. I've been working 6 days a week since I got it (one of the problems of owning a small business with one employee is that when that one employee needs time off.....it's all me). My initial impressions are that IQ wise, it is fairly similar to the X-S1....maybe a half step down, but with the trade-off of much more reach (which is really the reason I got it).
     
  5. hannahntilly

    hannahntilly SC Regular

    109
    Apr 13, 2012
    Surrey, UK
    Peter
    Thanks for your speedy comments. I think I need to ponder and convince myself that I really need the reach of a superzoom and that I'd actually use such a big camera. Recently I've been using the X100, together with the LX5 if I need wider or more reach, and I'm really pleased with the results of both. When I look through my pictures for the last 10 years, only about 2% of them are at a telephoto focal length. I think it's just that I saw a bargain and probably a bit of GAS.
     
  6. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Well, if you don't have a long lens, you can't shot long :wink:

    The 45-200 can be found pretty cheap I believe (but then I don't think that is very long.....but for someone who's range ends at 45mm, it might seem longer than it does to me)
     
  7. Tilman Paulin

    Tilman Paulin SC Top Veteran

    681
    Nov 15, 2011
    Dublin, Ireland
    when I played around with an XS1 in store, I was surprised how big it was. Not even in "small" DSLR territory, but rather mid-sized (I'm aware that that is a fairly subjective judgement :) )
    On the plus side, I remember it having a really nice big viewfinder.

    Not sure if the XS-1 is going to match the X10 in image quality. I read in some reviews that the lens is a bit softer. This is of course just me repeating what I read, so take it with a grain of salt :)

    Another m43 option would be the Oly 40-150mm. It has far less reach, but is a pretty good lens for the money.
     
  8. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    I'd agree with this. The body of the X-S1 felt to be very similar in size to my old Canon EOS 50D which definitely wasn't a small DSLR. The 50D was very comfortable to hold however so there is something to be said for a larger body.
     
  9. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    for me 2 cents, if one is consider a bridge camera and they want reach, they need to be willing to carry a bigger "camera/lens" set-up. The real weight savings vs a DSLR is not carrying ANY extra lenses and having everything from wide to SUPER long in one package.

    It's definitely down to personal choice, but I actually find a DSLR shape and size fairly comfortable. The problem with DSLRs is to cover all those focal lengths would take a couple lenses....and the one with reach (if it's going to be decent will be pretty big and heavy on its' own) will make a pretty heavy package.

    When I recently got the Fuji HS50EXR, it felt "big" in my hands. But once I got used to it, it felt great..... and actually, I think it's lighter (though larger and bulkier) than my Sony RX1.
     
  10. Tilman Paulin

    Tilman Paulin SC Top Veteran

    681
    Nov 15, 2011
    Dublin, Ireland
    you're absolutely right about the size/weight savings of not having additional lenses to carry, Luke!

    I just mentioned the size of the XS-1 as "surprisingly big" since it's bigger than any other super-zoom I had seen so far and the original poster, Peter, mentioned that he was keen on smaller cameras... :)

    We all know, small size isn't everything ;) I just thought I'd mention this fact about the XS-1 since it may not be apparent from looking at product photos...
     
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  11. kyteflyer

    kyteflyer ~@¿@~

    Jan 31, 2011
    Newcastle, Australia
    Sue
    The X-S1, dimensionally, is larger than my Pentax K5. It weighs as much, too, when the pentax has a zoom lens attached.

    If Yeats were still here he would say don't bother with it, its too slow, and too soft.
     
  12. greyelm

    greyelm SC Top Veteran

    846
    Oct 1, 2011
    London, England
    My main cameras are Fuji, but not the X- S1. However I do have a Lumix G3 on which I keep a 45-200 mounted. This is a great lens, it is very suitable for hand holding and the IQ is good enough that you can crop the images in PP to attain "closer" images.

    I do have an X10 and I'm always pleased with the IQ considering the size.
     
  13. hannahntilly

    hannahntilly SC Regular

    109
    Apr 13, 2012
    Surrey, UK
    Peter
    On balance, I think the most sensible route is similar to Malcolm's - put a 45-200 on my G1. Having looked at many XS-1 samples in more detail in various reviews and Flickr, I think they weren't up to the standards of the X10. Maybe the glass isn't up to it.

    Anyway, thanks again for all of your input. Peter
     
  14. Biro

    Biro SC All-Pro

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve

    Yup, a 45-200 is the most sensible. They can be picked up for about $250 new and less used. Now, if you're willing to spend a bit more, try the Panasonic 100-300mm, which gives you an effective 600mm at the long end.