Fujifilm XF1 Review

October 31, 2012 | Mark Goldstein | |

Your Comments

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#1 Frank Stanton

Thanks for the review. Often, your “night shot” pictures of camera reviews, including this review, are not shown. Right clicking to “show picture” does not bring the pictures back. Also, your link next to “Home”, for “Digital Camera Reviews” leads to a blank page (at least for the last couple days. Thanks

6:05 pm - Wednesday, October 31, 2012

#2 Craig

I held this camera in Jessops a few days ago. It’s truly a beauty. Been waiting for the reviews ever since.

6:23 pm - Wednesday, October 31, 2012

#3 Nicholas Chan

Thanks for the comprehensive review… I already owned both X100 and X10, but was still looking for a pocketable compact.  My options were either XF1 or F800EXR.  After a trial at the shop I eventually opted for the latter… the difference in picture quality was not really that significant and the wifi function of F800EXR made the difference.  Its also cheaper too.  Yet I must say both are very good (and beautiful) cameras.

5:09 pm - Thursday, November 1, 2012

#4 David

The review is incorrect in the detail where it says the playback mode is not available unless you have the camera fully turned on.
Playback mode is also available if you push and hold the playback button when the lens is completely retracted, and when its in standby mode.
Thats said, thanks for a good review!

12:56 pm - Saturday, November 3, 2012

#5 Michelle Mellisus

One of the reasons I rarely read your reviews anymore is because of a certain (positive) bias in virtually all of your camera reviews.

In this one, am I supposed to believe that 8 seconds is “good news” for night photographs?  This is ONLY 8 seconds and is an expensive camera.  Shouldn’t we say that 30 secs to a minute is good to excellent news for night photography?  Duh!

6:10 pm - Sunday, November 4, 2012

#6 irq

its the worst review-site i know…

10:01 pm - Saturday, November 17, 2012

#7 Steven Bartlett

Seems a good review to me.  Still loving my Fuji x100 to be honest although would love a decent small pocketable camera for nights out- currently using a Canon Ixus 220 for this.  This Fuji looks slightly too big (and expensive) for this purpose, but stylish to say the least!
As for Irq’s comment above; he can’t even spell properly and hasn’t backed up his comment so am totally disregarding it.

12:23 pm - Tuesday, November 20, 2012

#8 Jenn

I cannot find any contact information for you. Just an FYI, a Vine reviewer on Amazon has plagiarized your review. I have notified Amazon, but it might be a good idea if you contact them as well.  Here is a link to the review:


5:34 am - Saturday, December 1, 2012

#9 Steven Bartlett

Good spot Jenn.  I agree with you and have posted to that effect and contacted Amazon re the matter via the report abuse link.

10:26 am - Saturday, December 1, 2012

#10 mel

The slowest shutter speed is not 8 seconds it is 30. Read the manual.  Also I cant’ understand all the guff about the manual zoom and the on/off method.  I guess some people just have to show off their writing skills and say something against everything.  It only takes a few uses to get used to the turning of the lens barrel and it is much better than having the lens sticking out 3/4” all the time.  The lack of an on/off switch is a trade off for having a camera to stick in your pants pocket.

8:26 pm - Tuesday, January 8, 2013

#11 Phil

Ok review.  I’ve owned this camera for two weeks and disagree with your conclusion that it begs for a viewfinder and it’s quirky on/off system.  Your comments are based upon your subjective thoughts as a “Photographer / Reviewer”.  Remember the audience this piece is aimed at.  It’s Fuji’s attempt at a premium pocketable camera rivaling the S110 and RX100.  They have succeeded! 

I had no idea this piece was available until walking in a photo shop ready to buy the S110 or RX100 and walked out with the XF1 instead.  I love the manual control, find the on/off/standby sequence intuitive, outstanding Panorama mode and solid build quality.

Consider the target audience first them write from that perspective.  My two cents.

12:32 pm - Sunday, March 10, 2013

#12 Tonny

Great review, really appreciate when someone actually take time and explain, and as with anything else we all add our own opinion when writing. I now own the camera and is really happy about it,,, the only thing missing is a better user manual, but then again men don’t read manuals. Thanks for the review

2:04 pm - Friday, March 15, 2013

#13 Tonny

In what opinion what is the best setting EXR AUTO or just AUTO, when I test different pictures in a normal living room without flash I think the normal AUTO is best. What is the major difference between the two settings?

4:07 pm - Saturday, March 16, 2013

#14 Anastasia S

thanks for the neat & accurate review! made me relieved that i didn’t buy the wrong camera.

another thing is my thank you note for fujifilm for making a strong camera. 2nd day owning this camera, i accidentally dropped it from around 5.5’ height (the camera was inside a leather bag & my thin backpack though) but it works all fine till today. (hopefully it really is ok)

4:21 pm - Sunday, May 19, 2013

#15 Zed

If I had a choice between the X10 and the XF1
which one would you recommend that I get?

9:19 pm - Monday, June 17, 2013

#16 Terry

Nice review, Marc. So nice, in fact, that an Amazon Vine Voice has plagiarized quite a bit of it and posted it as his own review. I also reported it to Amazon as reviews there are required to be original. I hope you will consider reporting it, also.

10:04 pm - Tuesday, July 2, 2013

#17 Andrew

Now on sale for $300 so it makes a bit more sense.

Would have considered getting one but I despise the ‘retro look’ or whatever Fuji calls it.

1:44 pm - Thursday, August 15, 2013

#18 Kyle

I came across this camera in CEX (Electronics Exchange shop) and was attracted to the design. Now wanting to impulse buy a second hand camera, I started looking at reviews and came across this site. I now found the camera is on sale for £150.00 (new, not second hand!), so I’m thinking about buying it this evening :) Thanks for the review and hopefully I won’t be dissapointed.

(Reason for buying: I switched from an iPhone 5 to a Nexus 5 and miss the good camera, and as the Nexus 5 camera is terrible, this will hopefully fulfill my needs!)

2:28 pm - Tuesday, December 10, 2013

#19 Mark E

This is the most infuriating digital camera I have ever owned. Not because of the lens mechanism; I think that’s actually quite neat.

Firstly, the image quality in 12MP mode is awful when you view at the pixel level. Lots of ugly smearing, especially the greens. Changing sharpening and NR doesnt’ seem to help at all.

In EXR mode(s) at 6MP, the image quality is very good, but then you want to shoot raw in EXR mode? You can’t. Want to shoot raw in normal mode, then process later in an EXR mode? No chance. And in EXR mode you can’t use aperture or shutter priority. In EXR auto you can’t even do exposure compensation. It’s so frustrating.  I find the metering/AWB unreliable also, compared to other cameras I’ve had before, which is why the RAW mode is so appealing…but as I said you can’t use it in EXR mode, aaaaaarrgh!

And…why does it insist on choosing the highest ISO it’s allowed to, thus degrading image quality further? It’s mad! It seems intent on using super-fast shutter speeds, despite the fact it’s got decent image stabilization which will allow slower (1/30sec, for example) handheld exposures without blurring. Sure, you can set the ISO manually, but I would have expected to be able to set it at auto/800 and have it choose the lowest ISO possible for the shooting conditions.

I made a mistake buying this camera. It’s the first camera I’ve had with an EXR sensor, and it will be the last. The benefits, to me, don’t outweigh the complexity and the frustrating battle with the settings.

The plus points are, in my opinion: The lens, which is very good quality; the manual zoom; and the pleasing colour rendition.

Having read the other reviews here, it seems I’m unusual in my disappointment with the XF1. I’ve had other Fuji cameras (F31, F100fd) and was happy with them, but if this is the best they can do these days I’m not going to get another one. Hey ho, I guess I’ll probably sell the XF1 on and someone else will like it.

4:35 pm - Friday, February 7, 2014

#20 andy

Fair review. My experience is that the XF1 is tricky, but fun to use. Not intuitive but it makes you think about your images. Considered photography…now there’s a concept! Reasonable quality images are acceptable for a cheap compact. I agree with Mark E….frustrating metering is like predictive texting. But you do have multiple choices in how you set and adjust the exposures. My main gripe is the video. It seems very hesitant and jerky in playback. Shame, because the optical quality and rendition is good. Overall a nice piece and useful to have around. But no way is it ever going to compete with SLR processing capability.

9:55 pm - Monday, February 10, 2014

#21 Mark E

I’m reprising my review (#19) of the XF1 because I feel I was a little unfair to it.

Some of the problems it seems were caused by a faulty lens, specifically the overexposure and unpredictable image quality, which got worse over time. I sent it back to Fujifilm repair centre who were helpful and efficient and replaced the lens for me.

I still think the setup where you have Program-mode-with-RAW _or_ EXR-modes is silly.
And I still think the image quality in 12MP mode is crap.

But, I find the Dynamic Range and High-ISO-low-noise EXR modes are very useful, and the image quality in these modes (at 6MP) is excellent. 6MP is generally enough for me anyway (and I rarely want to shoot RAW if I’m honest).

Add to that good optics and lovely colour rendition; I’ve decided I’m going to keep this camera and make the best of it.

5:44 pm - Wednesday, February 26, 2014

#22 Michael

Funny you should mention that Kyle (#18), I just bought my XF1 (from a local online retailer) new for AUD$195 including the “leather” custom case, for almost exactly the same reason you did: I had sold my iPhone 5S (whose camera is better even than the iPhone 5) and bought a Nexus 5. While I like everything else about the Nexus 5, as you point out, its camera is terrible, especially in low light, but I couldn’t justify spending more than twice the price on a Samsung Galaxy S5, so I spent only a little bit more on this camera.

So far, in the last two days, playing around with it, I have only just begun to appreciate how functional a camera of this size could be, having a Nikon D5000 for events where I want to lug a DSLR around, and an Olympus C-5060WZ, which despite the excellent “pro-sumer” build quality, has aged a bit and still has some shutter lag to contend with, as well as not being pocketable.

The shutter lag is, as the review says, practically non-existent. When I researched pocket cameras the other day, I googled “shortest shutter lag point and shoot camera” and this is the one which consistently had the best reviews at under $200 (although it retails for $279 in shops near me).

For the money it is an excellent camera. I particularly like the retro look, which evokes comparison with the old Leica cameras.

12:34 pm - Wednesday, April 16, 2014

#23 Tonny

I have had the camera for some time now and I am really satisfied with the size and the quality. While it may not be compareable with larger cameras is it good at indoor pictures and at a small size, just what I needed.

I do however have one problem. Just had to turn it in for repair as when I zoom the light on the pictures is completely wring and it gets over exposed, anyone else having this problem?

4:23 pm - Wednesday, April 16, 2014

#24 Muthumaharajan


I am a zero on cameras. Can you please let me know that is this lens removable? and another large zoom lens are possible to mount on this camera ???

6:12 am - Thursday, August 28, 2014

#25 Mark E

Re. Tonny/23

Yes this was the exact same problem I had with my XF1.

I sent it in to Fujifilm for repair and they sent it back in a couple of weeks, working fine, and it’s been so since (about 10 months ago now).

This problem seems so common, their engineers can probably do the repair with their eyes shut now.

4:25 pm - Friday, November 21, 2014

#26 Robin

Used for 5 months, now everything is overexposed and “Lense Error” message just started. Used to sell cameras and fugi was in a lot for repairs. Glad this was a gift and I didn’t waste my money. Off to look at Canon’s or Nikon. Hint Hint

7:03 pm - Wednesday, February 4, 2015

#27 andy

Robin, I have had exactly the same problem. Contacted Fuji, and their service dept sent me a prepaid box, and repaired the fault and sent it back free of charge. This was a major surprise to me and I am delighted to have the camera back working normally. (How long for I don’t know)  Give them a call, it’s worth a shot?

8:41 pm - Sunday, February 22, 2015

#28 Bey

@andy, I have same problem now. It has a lens control error. I lobbied to be replaced with a different camera because I have lost confidence in the unit as this was a common problem in ALL XF1s. Disappointing. Let me know when will the repaired unit last. Thank you!

6:02 am - Friday, March 27, 2015

#29 Andy

@Bey: Reply-  I will let you know. I am someone who has low expectations and therefore I am rarely disappointed! But my fingers are crossed! Good luck with Fuji.

6:10 pm - Saturday, March 28, 2015

#30 Graham

Thankfully I got a paper manual when I bought my XF1 from a high street retailer. The review is fair but part of the text says you can manually focus and then says you can’t. (Check manual pages 62/5). PS I love my super-versatile XF1 and the resulting picture qualities well exceed my needs for viewing either on the PC or the TV.

4:27 pm - Friday, May 22, 2015

#31 David Hembrow

A worthless product from a company with worthless customer service.

Our Fujifilm XF1 developed the “Lens Control Error” problem after just eight months of light use. FujiFilm are refusing the repair the camera under guarantee. Instead, they’ve quoted us twice what we paid for the camera as the repair cost, and have said this expensive repair isn’t even guaranteed to fix the fault.

See photos showing how the images became progressively worse, and details of our interactions with FujiFilm customer support here:


In short: I’ll not buy another FujiFilm product.

2:47 pm - Tuesday, June 16, 2015

#32 Graham

If the guarantee is for 12 months I would have thought it’s not a case of repair but one of replacement. Don’t you have access to a consumer protection body?

12:38 pm - Thursday, June 18, 2015

#33 Richard Stent

Looks like I was lucky. My XF1 camera lasted 20 months before the lens control error message appeared. Of course it had to happen when on holiday and it was my only digital camera for colour pictures. Luckily took a film camera and ten rolls of b&w film-all very old and reliable Florence looks even better in black and white!

3:16 pm - Saturday, August 15, 2015

#34 Jeroen

Sending in my xf1 for the third time now for repair…Lens error control keeps coming back. They seem to have a lot of trouble with it, and unable to repair it thusfar. Third time lucky? I have asked for a replacement this time (rather than replacing the lens), xf1 or otherwise. I love the camera, but only if it works, and that has been frustratingly little. Luckily my canons seem much more reliable.

11:39 am - Monday, October 5, 2015

#35 Robert

My mint condition xf1 has just failed again. It was repaired under warranty the first time, but this time I have to pay. The fault is the widely reported lens control error! I love the camera, but no longer have confidence in it.

9:11 pm - Wednesday, November 4, 2015

#36 Victor

Bought this camera ( Fuji XF1 )discounted at Curry’s. Within a few months, like everyone else that has owned one the Lens Control Error came up and it hasn’t worked since. Read all the blogs and realized very quickly Fuji knew about this fault from very early on and should have recalled them ALL to avoid so much misery. I will never buy from Fuji again. One BIG lesson I have also learned is always fully research before you buy and never buy an item that is new on the market. Sham on Fuji and it’s your loss.

2:10 pm - Monday, November 30, 2015

#37 Mark

I bought XF-1 in Feb-2015. 2000+ images in nearly 12 months and got “Lens Control Error”. There were some overexposed images and then popping message on the screen. The camera was sent to Fuji for warranty repairs two days short of warranty expiry date. I was quoted 6-8 weeks, so most likely will ebay it if Fuji fixes it under the warranty. The camera wasn’t dropped, always in the Fuji cover, so must be design issue.

12:39 am - Tuesday, February 23, 2016

#38 Alan Clifford

I had my xf1 repaired under warranty and then it broke again.  I’ve had F series since the f31 and an X-S1 and not had problems, but this experience has really put me off Fuji.

1:59 pm - Monday, April 18, 2016

#39 Norbert-Hungary

Hi guys. I bought this camera before my trip to Mexico in October of 2015. In April 2016 (so just 7 months after) I got the same error message: “Lens control error”. I have to tell you that I was extremely satisfied with Fuji till now, at least with the picture quality, but now I’m thinking to never buy a Fuji product again. Just because this lens error is a common fault and they didn’t inform the consumers - or didn’t replace it automatically to let them use this camera for another 7-20 months. It’s a shame. R.I.P. Fuji

6:17 am - Thursday, May 19, 2016

#40 jahnjahn

More Lens Control Error here. I liked this camera. After little over 2 years use and about 3000 pictures it died. It still looks brand new because I’m alwayd careful with camera’s. At first, the pictures are over exposed. Then You cannot zoom over 35 mm. Shortly after that the camera dies completely because of lens control error. Just google and you’ll find over 9000 hits. Amazon US contains nice reviews ;(. I’m still fighting with Fuji who -in 2016- never heard of this problem. What a joke Fuji is.

1:15 pm - Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Entry Tags

review, 3 inch LCD, compact, 1080p, 12 megapixel, camera, zoom, 25mm, 4x zoom, f1.8, retro, 7fps, digital, 4x, EXR, xf1, Fujifilm XF1, fujifilm xf1 review, fujifilm xf1, Fujifilm XF1 Review

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