Reviewing Every Fujifilm X100 Camera Ever Made

When the Fujifilm X100 first hit the market it took the world by storm. A pocket-sized camera with stellar good looks and a retro-inspired control scheme, it was instantly coveted by photographers aplenty. We wanted to take a retrospective look at the X100 series from the beginning and give you the low-down on the upgrades and quirks over the years.

For this project, I, Chris Niccolls, would shoot the X100, X100T, and X100V while Jordan Drake would shoot the X100S, X100F, and X100VI. I was excited to try out the old cameras again as the X100 was one of the first cameras I officially reviewed in my career; now I had a chance to learn about the whole series all over again.

An open black camera bag containing six cameras, all placed side by side. Only the top portions of the cameras are visible, showcasing their lenses and dials. The bag has a mesh pocket on the inner side of the lid with a pen inside. The background is a wooden surface.
We had a full bag of X100 cameras and the latest X100VI as well. It was a lot to juggle.

In the Beginning Was the Fujifilm X100

Needless to say, sales for the Fujifilm X100 exploded. The camera was popular for good reason, too. The X100 featured a fast 23mm f/2 lens which gave a universally loved 35mm full-frame equivalent focal length coupled with a 12-megapixel APS-C sized sensor that rivaled the image quality from many high-end DSLRs at the time.

Most importantly though, the X100 blended the new and the old to create a timeless classic. Its optical viewfinder brought all the charm of a Leica rangefinder but provided a digital overlay that showed autofocus, metering, parallax-corrected framing, and more. Couple all this with tactile shutter and aperture controls and the X100 was destined for greatness.

A woman and a child walk down a sidewalk on a sunny day. The woman wears a red jacket, yellow skirt, and red leggings, holding a white shopping bag. The child wears a white top and colorful pants. They are walking by a yellow wall, with buildings visible in the background.
The X100 does fine focusing on slower moving subjects and the 12-megapixel Bayer sensor has a visual charm to it.

Perhaps the most compelling reason that made anyone instantly fall in love was the stunning design. It’s rather telling that although the subsequent cameras got slightly larger and more refined, the overall looks and feel of this line remain largely unchanged even today.

But the X100 was not without its quirks and pitfalls. When the camera first hit store shelves, it was plagued by unfinished firmware and poor autofocus performance. I was fortunate enough to get my hands on a fully updated X100 in this revisiting of a classic, but some issues remain.

The X100 featured a built-in leaf-style shutter which could go up to 1/4000 second. However, at wider apertures the shutter would only go to 1/1000 second which is counter-productive when you want to hold back extra light instead of letting more in. Fujifilm provided a solution to this by adding a three-stop ND filter which was elegantly incorporated into the camera body. This could be easily turned on and off providing the light control when needed.

A blue wall with a water pipe attached, painted in the same blue color, is partially shaded. To the right, a handrail follows a concrete staircase ascending diagonally out of the frame. The scene is divided by shadows, creating a stark contrast with the sunlight.
The optical viewfinder is quite accurate for framing purposes but I end up relying on the EVF anyways.

Unfortunately, the autofocus performance never really improved despite multiple firmware updates and successfully tracking fast-moving subjects was a lesson in futility. There was also a lack of customizable buttons on a camera which desperately needed them and the back dial and menu button would always trigger or change a setting at the worst time. I also don’t believe that the exposure compensation dial ever stayed at the chosen setting for very long at all. You can still find used X100 cameras today but unless you want a piece of history or tend to shoot in a more slow and conservative pace, I think there are better choices for the money. Clearly, the X100 needed an upgrade to iron out some kinks.

A person in a black baseball cap and green jacket is taking a picture with a camera in a mossy forest. The photo captures a child in a pink jacket and backpack walking ahead on a gravel path, surrounded by lush greenery and wooden railings.
The X100 cameras are pocket-sized and perfect for travel.

The First of Many Upgrades: The Fujifilm X100S

Alright, it’s Jordan here to write about my experience with the Fujifilm X100S, and back in 2013, it seemed like a massive upgrade over the original. It moved from a 12-megapixel Bayer to the 16-megapixel X-Trans sensor first seen in the X-Pro1. The EVF resolution jumped up to an actually usable 2.36M dots (1,024 X 768) and the addition of phase-detect autofocus to the sensor meant performance should have been much more confident and reliable.

A young girl with light hair pulled back in a ponytail gives a thumbs-up while standing against a background of dense green foliage. She is wearing a sleeveless floral dress and has a cheerful expression on her face.
The X100S upped the resolution to 16-megapixels but focusing was still spotty unless subjects were stationary.

My experience shooting with the X100S over a decade after its release was an exercise in frustration. The LCD was barely visible even during cloudy days, so I relied almost exclusively on the hybrid EVF. My biggest irritation, though, was with the autofocus. Often even with a contrast-y subject clearly separated from the background, the X100S would refuse to focus and give me the dreaded red box. Even more frustrating, though, were the occasions when I saw an AF confirmation green box only to review the images and find them completely out of focus.

A wide river curves through a lush green landscape with trees, grassy fields, and pathways. A steep cliff covered in grass is on the right, and there are scattered clouds in the sky. A small town or city is visible in the distance.
The 35mm equivalent field-of-view is versatile enough for most photography.

I would have a really tough time recommending the X100S in 2024. The forthcoming X100 models made huge improvements to usability and feel far less dated than the second model.

A close-up shot of a handheld camera, focusing on the lens and control dials. The camera features a manual aperture ring with visible f-stop numbers and textured metal detailing. The background is a wooden surface.
The X1ooT finally added 1/3rd stop increments to the aperture ring.

A Major Overhaul: The Fujifilm X100T

Cue the Fujifilm X100T which stands for “third” in the series. The X100T went in some bold directions to try and modernize the system and the first major change was to add a pop-up mini digital display when using the optical viewfinder. This would allow you to preview exposure and white balance while still using the OVF and could be raised and lowered with the flick of a switch. This approach was novel and did work but I found it largely distracting in use and it just made me want to rely on the EVF entirely, instead.

Fujifilm also added a fully electronic shutter which could go as high as 1/32000 second. This made the built-in ND filter mostly unnecessary when shooting in bright conditions. That said, the camera did suffer from a loss of dynamic range and nasty rolling shutter issues.

Upward view of a beige apartment building on a clear day. The structure has several floors with windows and small balconies. Green tree branches are visible at the top right, partially covering the building against a bright blue sky.
The X100T added “Classic Chrome” to the Fujifilm Film Simulation modes.

Some other thoughtful quality-of-life improvements were an aperture ring that finally gave third-stop increments of control and a better three-inch, 1.04-million dot EVF. The X100T also added the Classic Chrome film simulation mode which was intended to mimic Kodachrome, and USB charging of the battery in-camera.

It could be worth trying out the X100T if you find a good deal as the controls are much improved over the earlier cameras. However, the autofocus performance was still lackluster and the 16-megapixel X-Trans sensor was about to get a big boost.

A garage door with the words "NO PARKING" painted on it in all capital letters. Above the door, a sign reads, "MAXIMUM CLEARANCE 6'5" | 1.9M." Dappled sunlight and shadows from nearby trees create a pattern on the garage door and surrounding area.
Fujifilm is much lauded for its excellent color images as well as silky black-and-white profiles. Fujifilm has always taken some of the best images straight out of camera.

Fourth Time’s a Charm: Fujifilm X100F

Now we’re really getting somewhere! 2017’s Fujifilm X100F saw a resolution bump to 24 megapixels through an X-Trans sensor. Importantly, there were far more phase-detect pixels on the chip, making it much easier to precisely choose your subject. To assist with that task, an AF joystick was introduced. The X100F also saw the addition of a front control dial so you could bypass the physical dials and adjust exposure like a DSLR. Physical dial aficionados saw some improvement as well, with an ISO control wheel embedded in the shutter speed dial.

Close-up of the back of a camera, showing textured black and silver surfaces. Visible buttons include a playback button designated by a triangle icon and a delete button indicated by a trash can icon. The screen is partially visible on the left side.
The X100F has both proper command dials, customizability, and a new AF joystick. Autofocus is also more reliable.

I had a great time using the X100F on my family vacation to Vancouver Island. While C-AF and face detection could struggle, I had great success using the focus-recompose technique in S-AF mode. The dual dial layout gave me plenty of options to customize my controls, and the interface was finally very responsive. One thing was made apparent, though: the original Fujinon 23mm f/2 lens was the camera’s limiting factor. Even stopped down, it struggled to resolve 24 megapixels worth of detail.

Two people in bumper boats, one wearing a black cap and jacket and the other wearing a white shirt and black cap, are navigating a section of a water park. The scene is set with clear blue water, rocks, and greenery under bright daylight.
The X100F was Jordan’s choice for a travel camera to Vancouver Island. It excels in this role as a take-anywhere camera.

If you can find an X100F for a good price, and don’t rely on C-AF, the X100F is an extremely fun camera to use, and the oldest X100 I would actually consider picking up today.

A young child wearing sunglasses, a light blue shirt, and pink pants stands in the shallow waters at a beach. The child is splashing water, and in the background, there are mountains, a cloudy sky, and a tree-lined shoreline.
From family vacations to street photography, the X100 appeals to many different photographers.

The First X100 Camera I Fell in Love With: The Fujifilm X100V

I will be the first to admit that I never quite jumped on the whole X100 bandwagon. In fact, I even poo-pooed the cameras as fairly rigid and restrictive and I never liked the lens field-of-view. That all changed when I first reviewed the Fujifilm X100V as I found myself pleasantly surprised at how much I was enjoying the experience of using one. And it wasn’t just me because, to this day, the X100V is still in huge demand, easily exceeding global production for years. A big part of the appeal is the latest 26-megapixel sensor which gives an ideal compromise between image quality and video capability. The lens was also redesigned to be sharper overall for the higher resolution sensors and particularly better in close-up shots too.

Close-up shot of a Fujifilm camera lens with the text "SUPER EBC f=23mm 1:2" engraved on the front rim. The lens is silver with a black interior and is resting on a textured black surface.
The X100V added a new lens design which was sorely needed and incredibly reliable face/eye detect autofocus.

The built-in ND filter was strengthened to four stops of light loss and finally, we had a better 3.69-million dot EVF. I never really enjoyed using any of the X100 series OVF displays so to have a new, sharper EVF was a big upgrade for me. The back panel also became a touch-screen that tilted out of the body for high and low-angle shots. The X100V also stepped up autofocus in a big way with decent tracking AF and far more effective face/eye detection autofocus.

A store display features a red dress on a mannequin with a sign that reads "HAPPY YEAR OF THE RAT" along with Chinese characters. The display also includes a graphic of a stylized rat. The background shows various buildings reflected in the glass.
I had a great experience with the X100V which I hadn’t fully appreciated with the previous models.

Video performance was excellent and now featured 4K record modes and a whole plethora of Fujifilm Film Simulation profiles for both photos and videography. Even with the introduction of a newer model to replace the X100V, demand is still off the charts in a way that we may have never seen before in a camera.

A city street scene with a row of empty bike racks in the foreground. Two people are visible; one walks along the sidewalk near a building with a white door and "No Parking" sign, while the other waits by a busy intersection with cars and taller buildings in the background.
Focus is fast on the X100V and the image quality is great for both photo and video applications.

The Legend Continues: The Fujifilm X100VI

With a substantial gap between releases, the X100VI finally arrived in 2024 with the impressive 40-megapixel X-Trans sensor. I was expecting that, but not the inclusion of an IBIS unit which makes it possible to handhold long exposures. The X100VI also includes the latest autofocus algorithms including subject detection and an impressive list of video recording modes.

A young person wearing a white full-face helmet is looking at the camera. They are indoors in a dimly lit space with wooden structures and equipment in the background. They are wearing a dark gray shirt.
The X100VI is the culmination of over a decade of improvements.

The X100 VI is a joy to use, and a camera that I continue to waffle about purchasing. The image quality is truly lovely and I appreciate the extra cropping room 40 megapixels provide. The autofocus is very accurate, even at my daughter’s birthday party with a dozen kids running around. The discreet styling of the camera allowed me to capture truly candid moments I rarely get with my intimidating-looking larger mirrorless cameras.

I also loved the experience of filming in San Francisco with the camera a few months ago, it was a pleasure to be able to slide my primary video camera into a jacket pocket while still capturing excellent results.

A man with white hair, wearing a dark jacket, sits on a bench inside a spacious indoor garden. He faces a large pond surrounded by lush green plants, with a few fountains in view. The area features a high, bright ceiling and more people are visible in the background.
The X100VI has the latest 40-megapixel sensor and excellent AF performance. It is the best of the X100 cameras for photographers.

I think this combination of features justifies the X100 VI’s higher price. The real question is if you can actually acquire one. Wait lists are expected to take months if not years for orders to be filled. Having shot with the X100VI for a short while though, I can certainly see why demand is so high.

The X100 Series is Fujifilm’s Legacy

The X100 series will always be looked upon as a shining example of excellent camera design and, more importantly, a camera system that is truly loved by its users. There is no denying that Fujifilm has played a big part in the popularization of the pocket camera and is a success story that many other manufacturers must look at with jealousy and respect.

There is a healthy used market for X100 cameras and the experience of using one of these cameras is within reach of most photographers. Hopefully, our video and article can help you to decide which model would best suit you or whether it is worth getting on the waiting list for the latest models. Regardless, one of the main reasons we do photography is to have fun and the X100 cameras are purpose-built to bring a smile to a photographer’s face.

Thanks to KEH for loaning us the X100, X100S, X100T, X100F, and X100V for the purposes of this review. Thanks to The Camera Store for loaning us the X100VI.