My X100 is ill…

Unfortunately, I confirmed last night that my FujiFilm X100, the camera which above all else taught me much more (and led me to develop a passion rather than a frustration) about photography, is faulty. Above all, I’m a bit sad. It may not have the most megapixels or any in camera filters but I almost always come back from a day using it having enjoyed the experience. Rather than a post of over exposed photos and a great deal of ire for Fujifilm, I actually just wanted to create a little post paying tribute to this great little camera.

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I’ve been wondering if it was faulty since August because it was often randomly overexposing. I checked the aperture and noticed it was struggling with the higher (narrower) apertures immediately after being switched on.

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It seems it is struggling with the somewhat infamous “sticky aperture blade” problem.

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I’ll confess though that the Henri Cartier-Bresson quote that “your first 10,000 photographs are your worst” seems apt when I look at most of the photographs when I started out with the camera. I would add to that quote by stating that you’ll barely be able to understand what you were doing in the first half of the 10,000… To be clear I am not criticising the camera so much as lamenting the fact that as it developed me as a photographer the first photos (and unfortunately the majority) I took with it are a bit, well, rubbish!

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The X100 is “old” technology (particularly its sensor and the lack of bells and whistles) but it is a lovely camera. It’s a pity that the initial design of the leaf shutter and lens is prone to this problem as the images it can produce are really wonderful, particularly when processed in RAW through Lightroom.

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I’m not sure I would buy another one (nothing against the X100, I just have too many cameras anyway), so I hope Fuji can fix it. I had always promised myself that even if I bought and sold every CSC camera until the cows come home I would keep the ones that I feel a connection with (probably the M9, the X100 and the E-M5).

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In all fairness the process for requesting a repair from Fujifilm is about a thousand times easier than other manufacturers I could name – I understand packaging and pre-paid postage materials are on their way to me ASAP.

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The pictures here are a mixture of OOC jpegs and processed RAWs.

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Update 9 December: I’ve had my X100 back and not only is the SAB fixed, but the image quality seems about 20-30% sharper, especially wide open or at F2.8. I suspect my camera was a “Friday afternoon” model. Never mind – it’s a great camera that’s even better now its fixed. I do suspect mine became faulty perhaps a month or two after I bought it and thereafter I didn’t use it enough to realise the problem was the camera, not me. I looked at some of the pictures I took today with it and was blown away by the detail and sharpness. Throughly looking forward to giving it a bit more use this week!

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6 thoughts

  1. Despite ‘liking’ your post, I don’t like it at all! I feel for you, as my X100 brought back a joy to photography that I had somehow lost.

    I hear Fujifilm are excellent at dealing with these issues, tough. I hope you get it back soon.

  2. That was a good post about a sad situation and thank you for casting light – for I am re-learning photography with my X-E1 and I chuck most of my shots away. Yet every time I press the shutter button, it’s a thrill because the camera is giving me as much help as I could ever ask. Hope your baby gets fixed soon!

    • The one thing I really like about all the Fujifilm X cameras (or at least those I’ve used, the X10, X100 and X-Pro1) is that they seem to be designed to engage the user and make photography fun again. Too many manufacturers miss that point as they cram in extra features.

  3. Don’t despair! Fuji will fix it for free by replacing the lens, so long as you have a copy of the sales receipt. They fixed mine in a matter of days and paid for shipping. Now it works perfectly!

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