I love my old X100S, and I sold it years ago. I brought this new X100V and I am going to keep it. Let me tell you why.
First of all, I am a Canon user. From my first 350D to 5Dmk2, and now the 5Dmk4, Canon's cameras are always the center of my photography gears. Although they do not have the most advance tech like sony's products and their cameras never look sexy, they are always the most reliable tools in my hands. Their lenses are another reason I am love, the images produced are razor-sharp, and the colors are so pleasing to my eyes. Yet it has one big downside, the weight. Canon's gears are so heavy! just like all other full-frame DSRL. I take my camera hike and a lighter backpack and gears are always my wish. So I brought an X100S years ago.
After using the X100S for about a year, I sold it. The image quality was decent, yet below my expectation, the camera was slow compare to my 5Dmk2, battery life was not great. While I loved the body design of the camera, loved the compact size and the retro+modern control system, the camera did not convince me to keep it on my shelf.
In recent years, many people said Fuji APSC is already so advanced that it could stand side by side with a full-frame camera. Lucky me, getting a bonus from a job and I decided to use the extra money to give the X100V another try.
The first thing I did when I got the new camera, is to compare it with Canon's 5Dmk4. and I always take RAW + JPG in the X100V, but unfortunately, even the latest lightroom (version 9.2) still have error processing the Fuji RAW files. so I have to use JPG in this test. JPG may slightly degrade the image quality, but it should not mean much if I use both RAW and JPG straight out from the camera and do not make a huge change in colors.
Comparing the two cameras is not a fair game. The combo of 5Dmk4 and its L-lens are way more expensive than X100V. Besides the sensor size, the bigger lens does produce a better image, too! this is the law of physic. And this is the reason that the mobile phone could never compete with a real camera.
Anyway, I found the image quality is way up from the old X100S but still could. The new lens design should be the major reason for this improvement. Yet this compact camera is could not match the full-frame in image quality. I do not agree that APSC could replace full-frame at all. If you need an absolute pixel sharp photo, full-frame and big lenses are the way to go. Besides the details, Fuji Color is the mojo of this camera. I am not saying Canon's colors are bad, but Fuji's colors seem to attract my eye-balls more. The photos are usually good enough straight out JPG, while I usually tone photos from my 5Dmk4.
The advantage of this compact camera is not the image quality. It is FUN. Using 5Dmk4 made me feel comfortable, and I could trust the camera to fulfill with I wanted to do. Using X100V feels joyful. I could just enjoy capturing the moment and not thinking about any other technical things.
Comparing with the old X100S (with my memory years ago......), although some buttons changed and design, the X100V feels similar in hands. It is now weatherproof (with a filter attached). This new one is way faster, battery life is better, has a tilt screen. The image quality is better for sure, and video quality (which I just use 2-3 times to shot videos with X100S) is surprisingly good, too!
There are 2 things I like the old model more. First, no direction buttons and forcing me only to use the joystick in the control. I am not a fan of "one-button-do-all". This sometimes makes it slower to find the setting I wanted. Second, the Dive button place in a strange place near the EVF. When I am holding the camera with my right hand and use the left hand to press the button, it always toggles the eye-sensor and turns off the screen.
Some downsides may not only be the problem of X100V but all the Fujifilm cameras. The Fuji Remote App sucks! It is so bad that even a simple task like transfer photos to my phone drives me crazy. The app interface is poorly designed, and very very very unresponsive, hang and crash so many times (using iPhone XR, with latest software update). The camera does not have GPS, while you could sync up the location using the phone, you have to always connect the camera with the app, which the app is terrible as I just mentioned. GPS should be onboard for this kind of travel-camera.
This is not a perfect camera, but it is a fun one. You may able to use it for all professional work, due to the fixed lens and other limitations, but you must love using this camera (without using its app......).
If you interested in the equipment I used, please check the links below:
- Shimoda Action X30 Backpack ----- https://amzn.to/3jmclwi
- Peak Design Tripod ----- https://amzn.to/3fQHdTA
- Peak Design Everyday Backpack Zip ----- https://amzn.to/2P1H5oR
- Shimoda Explore 40 Starter Kit ----- https://amzn.to/2OWJp0b
- Canon 5D Mark IV ----- https://amzn.to/2wiA64k
- DJI Mavic 2 Pro ----- https://amzn.to/2OXGZOU
- Shimoda Explore 40L Backpack ----- https://amzn.to/2SxOAGl
- GoPro Max ----- https://amzn.to/39xvaXM
- Manfrotto PIXI Mini Tripod ----- https://amzn.to/37wVRKH