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The X100-S

Discussion in 'Fuji X100 Forum' started by Boid, May 19, 2012.

  1. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    I've never used a Leica, and had never shot with a rangefinder camera till recently when I bought a Yashica GTN film camera. Having never used a manual focus camera before, I really hadn't expected the process of focusing to be as compelling an experience as it turned out to be. I suddenly felt more connected to what I was framing in the viewfinder. The process of hunting around for a vertical surface, trying to get the images to line up, it was all very exciting and more than that, I felt more responsible for the quality of the output. I kept wondering whether the one thing that is wrong with my X100, couldn't be turned to it's greatest advantage. Poor AF. If Fujifilm could just do away with the darn thing and put in a nice rangefinder OVF instead. I mean they already have a rangefinder in the GF670!

    Fujifilm GF670 Professional Film Camera

    I put together a list of things that would make the X100 more compelling for me, lets call it the X100"Street" or X100-S

    1. A true rangefinder with a parallax OVF, as bright as the X100.
    2. Fixed, manual focus only, 35mm lens, with a notch where your finger fits in (basically like a Leica lens).
    3. All black body with no markings on the face.
    4. Get rid on everything that is not essential, no movie mode, digital filters, etc.
    5. Price it just under 2000$ (I'm guessing the rangefinder VF will be a fair penny)
    6. The APSC sensor on the X100 remains.
    7. Bundle an editing software that replicates all Fuji film filters, corrections, etc (maybe a tweaked version of CameraBag2 customized for Fuji)
    8. Detachable tiltable LCD panel for waist level shooting, that I could leave at home or in the camera bag, so that I don't have the option of chimping every time I take a picture (could be sold as a separate accessory). Of course it might be ungainly focusing the camera while using this (TLR cameras were used this way but the focus dials were on the side).

    Does any of this make sense to you guys? What else would you add to the list?
     
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I like some of your ideas here Boid, but I take umbrage with your pricing scheme. I certainly want it to be a quality product. But the reason there are so many old, great fixed lens rangefinder cameras on the used market that we can buy cheaply, is because they were always a cheap camera to manufacture. There is nothing inherently expensive about making a rangefinder camera (especially if the rangefinder mechanism is just going to work with a fixed focal length).

    So, I like all your numbered suggestions except for #5. I say they make an entry-level digital 35mm rangefinder (though maintaining high build and optical quality) for around $1000. Then when it starts to sell like hotcakes, they bring out an interchangeable lens version for around $2,000. It would be akin to their introduction of the X100 that was followed up by the X-Pro1 a year later.

    I'd buy one.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. TraamisVOS

    TraamisVOS SC Hall of Famer

    Nov 29, 2010
    Melboune, Australia
    THIS, THIS, THIS was what happened to me when I got my Leica. DSLR photography felt superficial and unsatisfactory after that. I so wanted to love the X-Pro1 but it's hard now. If I do get another camera, it'll be for other purposes like motion capture or filmmaking. Or, something in medium format which I've had my eye on lately.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Isoterica

    Isoterica SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 6, 2011
    And I wouldn't mind one of those sweet bellows 80mm babys either!

    Whatever it comes down to Boid, people will still shoot digital like they shoot digital, it won't ever be the same. Reason being, excess frames are free. The shooter has to slow down, think about what they want to convey, compose their shots, of course chimp the viewfinder to make sure they got them otherwise there is no reason to digital.. and then move on. Not fire 10-12 shots hoping to get something in the flurry. I think it is more than just the rangefinder experience though I love mine, I think its developing a waste less philosophy as well.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Kristen, I think you are partially right. But I definitely slow down and enjoy the experience more shooting with manual glass on a digital body. But I do love the instant feedback of digital. I have a couple film cameras and I just never use them. My life is too busy and sometimes I'll go out to shoot and only grab 3 or 4 frames. I have one camera that I loaded film into last summer and I still have 12 frames left to shoot. So I'm not wasteful with digital....I still shoot very few frames, but I need digital so that I can enjoy my shots in the same year that I take them.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Nobody ever seems to agree with me about this, but here goes again ... if film had never existed, if rangefinders had never existed ... and digital photography had been invented last year (but as it is it is today) as the first and only method of capturing images ... nobody would be talking about how best to reduce the functionality of the cameras so as to "improve the shooting experience" ...

    as it is, we all have both film and digital and rangefinders (and AF and slrs and pinholes and Box Brownies and lightmeters and mechanical cameras and video and Bayer sensors and Foveon sensors and monochrome sensors and ... whatever else your heart desires) available to us ...

    ... and there are no rules about having to use only one and no other ... in fact, there are no rules ...
     
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  7. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I agree with you pdh. I think anything that helps people take better photos is good. I'm not asking for AF to be removed from existence. I view it as akin to some people preferring a manual transmission vs. an automatic. It's not always that people think they getter fuel efficiency or quicker acceleration. Some just prefer the experience.

    I would welcome a digital rangefinder with manual focus only for the pure joy and connectedness to the process (without the added expense of film). Also be keeping AF out of the camera altogether, you remove people's complaints about poor AF performance.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    thanks Luke.
    I'm certainly not feeling critical of Boid, by the way, for his take on this (you're not the first, Boid, to want this sort of thing! - though you have basically described an M8 :smile:) ... it's just that if you want to use 1920s technology to focus your camera, you can already (I do sometimes, I've got a Bessa R2a after all) and you can even buy a digital camera to do it with (if you save up long enough or have deep pockets) ... but no manufacturer is at all likely to start setting up production lines to do it now from scratch, not even Fuji ... the costs would so far exceed the potential money to be made from a small number of enthusiasts as to make it prohibitive ...
     
  9. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    So which one do you prefer? I like rangefinders, just not the price that I have to pay for it.
     
  10. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    My guesstimate on the price was because Fuji would have to build the X100 and then lug a rangefinder VF in it. From whatever I've read on manufacturing a nice bright rangefinder VF, it seems Leica managed one with the M3 and then hasn't built anything as good since.
     
  11. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    Are you suggesting that there wouldn't be a market for a camera like this without AF? For me, not having AF is one of the principal reasons I'm considering buying a Leica, as I'm sure it is with a number of people. I feel it potentially could be Fuji's best selling product.
     
  12. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    Are you asking if I prefer film or digital? Not the right person to ask I'm afraid - it's all just pictures to me.
    I prefer to use the camera that I want to pick up but don't want to put down
    As for price ... if you add together the cost of your X100, LX5 and DSC, plus any money you have spent on other cameras and accessories, I bet you could have afforded an RD1s or an M8 ... (so could I, but instead I bought other cameras and accessories too!)
     
  13. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    I agree with you Kristen. The digital world doesn't care of waste. Kai from DigitalRev has enough practice on his Leica to focus fast. DigitalRev TV - Camera Focus Test - YouTube I'd love to have the same degree of familiarity with the X100, which I really love btw. But more often than not I'm just playing catch-up to a slow AF.
     
  14. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    I'm suggesting that there would not be a significantly large market to make it worthwhile for a manufacturer to tool up - from scratch - to make a precision mechanical device like a rangefinder.
    I have no idea how many X100s, X10s and XP1s Fuji will sell (let alone all their other small-sensor compacts) but the idea that a camera without AF would outsell any of them is unlikely to be accurate. It would require tens (probably hundreds) of thousands of consumers to decide that AF was less trouble than MF ... which, lets be straight about this - it just isn't ... AF is incredibly convenient
     
  15. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    :smile: Dang. Now you've set me thinking. I should sell off my gear. But they're not really worth much money. I was talking digital though, and how it would be nice to simplify the functions in camera, stop messing with too many options while shooting, instead concentrate of capturing enough detail to work with on post. I'll be waiting to buy the M10. In fact I'll wait a full year after it's launched to buy one, since Leica takes about that long to iron out the kinks in every camera they have released.
     
  16. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I would just like to know what has changed in the manufacturing process since the days of the much maligned 35mm rangefinders form the days of old. Like the Olympus trip, or the Yashicas........etc. every company it seems had one.....and they were dirt cheap. Why does it NEED to be priced like a Leica? I don't understand it.....why can't you just jam a sensor in there where the film goes? Take out the LCD screen, take out the AF mechanism and the all the technology that goes into it.

    Look at the Bessa...... $700 for a beautifully made precision device. Why would making it digital triple the price? And what I'm talking about makes it cheaper..... the rangefinder can be much simpler if it needn't be planned to work with different focal lengths. Have you people seen the prices commanded the old Epson rangefinder...... epson rangefinder | eBay . I'd say there's a market for them. Buying 7-8 year old digital technology for modern day digital prices. If you make it cute, and with great optical quality, you'll get photography enthusiasts, fashionistas and hipsters all beating down your door.....as long as it's affordable.
     
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  17. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    I agree! We should kidnap some suits at Fuji and hold them hostage till they make this happen! But seriously, the RD-1 prices are a scandal! For a 6mp sensor! How can more camera makers not see this??
     
  18. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I like the way you think Boid.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  19. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    well, the camera doesn't force you to fiddle with it!
    My E-P2 is permanently in Aperture priority; The only things I ever change are the lens (!), the ISO if it starts to get a bit dim, and the metering occasionally ... mind you most of my pictures still turn out to be snaps but I don;t think if I changed lots of camera options while I was shooting it would turn me into Kertesz ... (unfortunately)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    I think the RD1 has become a bit of a chic camera amongst a certain crowd recently - the prices have doubled in the last year (I nearly bought one about this time last year is how I know) - wouldn't surprise me if there was a sudden glut of them in a few months time (with appropriately lower prices)