FujiXfiles

FujiXfiles blog with tips & tricks and personal experiences with my Fujifilm X-Series cameras. Fuji X10, X100, X100S and X-Pro 1 and Fujinon XF 14mm f2.8, XF 18mm f2, XF 35mm f1.4 and Samyang 8mm f2.8 fisheye lenses.

The Fuji X100S made me a better B&W photographer

So let me share my "secrets" to getting great B&W results from the Fuji X100S with you.

Exploring new directions - Fuji X100S

B&W photography can give your photography a new direction

I started my photography with a cheap plastic camera from a grab bag and a roll of B&W film in the 70's. I must have been 5 or 6 years old at that time. I guess that is where my emotional attachment to B&W photography started.

But when I switched to mainly digital cameras I shot generally in color. This was in big part due to the fact that I did not like the in camera results that the JPG B&W modes produced. And once the color file ended up on my computer, I often just stuck with color.

But since I own the Fuji X100S this has changed! The Fuji X-Cameras create superb color files straight out of the camera. But for the B&W lover in you, Fuji has also created some wonderful B&W filters.

I can see between the lines - Fuji X100S

This reflection would have drowned in a busy color background

My favorite B&W setting on the X100S for most situations are:

- Film simulation: B-R (B&W Red Filter)

- Sharpness: +1

- Highlight Tone: +1

- Shadow Tone: +2

- Noise Reduction: -2

This will give you a fairly contrasty B&W look when exposed correctly.

Late summer day in Copenhagen - Fuji X100S

The lack of color can be visually relaxing

And in case you don't have a lot of experience with B&W photography the Fuji X cameras with EVF or LCD will take you by the hand and guide you to your first successful exposures. When you switch your JPG to B&W you will see a B&W image in the EVF / LCD preview. Now use the exposure compensation dial (in Aperture priority mode) to increase or decrease the exposure and get a more predominant black or white  look.

Remix the World Copenhagen - Fuji X100S

B&W works great for structures and patterns

Through the live preview in the EVF I got this next photo exposed the way I wanted in my first try. It feels like cheating, but the result is what counts! ;)

Shadow mirroring BMX - Fuji X100S

Got this exposed the way I wanted on the first try - and this pose in motion would not have had time for a second try

This is a X100S portrait with my B&W settings plus on board fill flash straight out of the X100S:

Happy Bokeh Friday 11.10.2013 - Fuji X100S

This is a JPG straight out of camera!

If I still want some more contrast in my photo I upload the JPG file to my iPad and do some  quick adjustments - et voilà!

Harbour Landscape B&W - Fuji X100S

The sun flare was visible in the EVF. This way I was able to time it just right when the ship passed underneath it.

Still not sure if you want to deprive your exposures of the color for good? No problem! Set the Fuji X100S to shoot JPG + RAW and the RAW file will contain all of the color information just in case you change your mind later. The EVF will still show the B&W preview. Feels like cheating again? Don't worry! It is all about the images that come out of the camera :)

Happy Hamburg Bokeh Friday 27.09.2013 - Fuji X100S

Be adventurous and try to some B&W photos with your Fuji X-Camera

 I have to admit that I sometimes shoot JPG + RAW and end up using the RAW file to convert it into a B&W JPG in post processing. I will do this when I shoot in very contrasty situations and might need to recover some highlights later. The other occasion is when I shoot close to or at ISO 6400. I have set the Noise Reduction to -2 but at those high ISO the X100S tends to smooth out a bit too much details despite the NR -2 setting.

Night portrait at ISO 6400 and 19mm - Fuji X100S

At ISO 6400 I prefer RAW to keep more details

So, are you ready to give it a try? Then why not just save the B&W settings as one of your custom settings in your X100S for those occasions when you feel like shooting Monochrome :)

Copenhagen - Bike and Run City - Fuji X100S

The Fuji X100S is the perfect B&W camera for me!

If you have any further questions or want to share your Fuji X B&W experiences just leave a comment below or Twitter me @HamburgCam

And if you liked my post I am always happy if you spread the word and retweet, like or google +1 it :-)

Fuji X-Pro 1 and Olympus OM Zuiko lenses

After my

review on the Kipon Canon EOS to Fuji XF adapter

, I am going to write about how the Kipon Olympus OM-XF adapter performs on the Fuji X-Pro 1.

Fuji offers their own intelligent adapter for Leica M lenses. And if I were fortunate enough to own Leica M glass, I would buy the Fuji adapter in a heartbeat.

But I still own some Olympus OM Zuiko lenses from my old analog OM-4 Ti. Therefore another Kipon adapter was ordered and I had it connected to the X-Pro 1 quite often in the past month.

Unfortunately, my OM lens collection on the wide side overlaps with my current Fujinon XF lenses in terms of effective focal length. This leaves me with the Olympus OM Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 Auto-S and OM Zuiko 100mm f/2.8 Auto-T as useful additions to my current X-Pro 1 lens lineup. Great thing about those two lenses is that they are rather compact (compaed to the Olympus 50mm f/1.4 and 100mm f/2). And with the additional lengt of the Kipon OM-XF adapter, you'll want as short of a lens as you can get - unless you want to end up with an odd looking drainpipe sticking out from your slim X-Pro 1 body ;)

The biggest advantage of the OM lenses vs. the Canon EOS EF lenses is that you can select the aperture right on the lens itself. No aperture "hack" required :)

And how do they perform? The image quality is great! I mainly use the 100mm as this effective field of view equals 150mm on a full frame body. Somehow I did not find much use for the 50mm (75mm equivalent FOV), yet.

Both performe really well wide open. But in order to use them wide open your focus has to be spot on. And that is quite difficult to manage with the current stage of the EVF refresh and magnification rate offered by the X-Pro 1. Did I mention before that I wish for a second MF magnification level of 5X in addition to the 10X we already got? And focus peaking would make focusing long MF lenses so much easier...

But the way it is right now (X-Pro 1 with FW 1.10) I usually stop down on moving subjects to f/5.6 in order to get enough depth of field to compensate for focus inaccuracy. It works but it takes a bit potential away from this great combo.

So if you want to use your OM (or any other manual focus) lens wide open on the X-Pro 1 make sure you aim at static objects - possibly even with the camera set on a tripod.

Here are some sample images - as always click on the image to see a larger version:

Last one standing - Fuji X-Pro 1

"Last one standing" - X-Pro 1 with Olympus OM 100mm f/2.8 Zuiko at f/8

Happy Bokeh Friday 08.06.2012 - Fuji X-Pro 1

As they were posing for their own photo I was able to nail focus with the OM 100mm wide open at f/2.8 - nice bokeh, too

First contact - Fuji X-Pro 1

Architecture works also well with the OM 100mm at f/5.6 as there is virtually no distortion!

Analogman @ work in Paris! Fuji X-Pro 1

Another lucky shot with the 100mm at f/2.8 - I wished focusing this long lens would be more reliable with the EVF in scenes with moving subjects

Hiding - Shrouded in a scarf - Fuji X-Pro 1

This was shot in a crowded place but I was able to single out this undercover lady with the 100mm lens at f/5.6

Olympus OM 50mm f/1.8 auf Fuji X-Pro 1

This is an example of how well the OM 50mm f/1.8 looks on the X-Pro 1

Getting close - Fuji X-Pro 1 with OM 100mm

And just in case if you are interested in how the OM 100mm handles color images... Looks very natural to me :)

DSCF5813

The OM 100mm f/2.8 isn't a dedicated macro lens - but look at the details on the focus point on the "C" from Cycle in the full size image at f/2.8!!! (click the image)

Fuji X-Pro 1 with Kipon OM-XF adapter and Olympus OM 100mm f/2.8 Zuiko lens

And now you probably want to see how the adapter and lens combo looks like when attached to the X-Pro 1. Notice that the Kipon OM-XF adapter itself is about half as long as the 100mm lens.

To sum it up:

The Olympus OM lenses were good lenses back in the analog days. And the once I tested perform really well on the X-Pro 1, too. So if you still have some OM lenses in the drawer, think about getting an OM-XF adapter for your X-Pro 1. And if you don't have any old lenses, check for used OM lenses on the web or at you used camera store.

Against my usual believe to go for the "faster, bigger and more expensive lenses" I would suggest to go for the smaller, lighter, cheaper ones when it comes to OM 50mm f/1.4 vs. f/1.8 and OM 100mm f/2 vs. f/2.8. The "slower" lenses perform really good and due to the challenging EVF focusing on the X-Pro 1 you might end up stopping the lenses down anyway.

If you have any further questions leave a comment below or Twitter me @HamburgCam

And if you liked my post I am always happy if you spread the word and retweet, like or google +1 it :-)

Fuji X10 goes to Paris, too - and does cool panos

When deciding what gear to take to Paris this year my prime mission was to go light without sacrificing the image quality that I am used to from my DSLR cameras. My second companion camera to the Fujifilm X-Pro 1 was the compact Fujifilm X10!

A compact? Why? After owning the X100 for 6 month I eagerly awaited the X10 to hit the stores towards the end of last year. Just like I did with the X100, I ordered the X10 without ever phisically holding it in my hand. Buying without trying is a very untypical thing for me to do, but I was pretty certain that the X10 would be the compact camera that I would feel least limited with - compared to a bigger camera.

My main reasons for choosing the X10 were the fast high quality lens with f/2-2.8 at 28-112mm (35mm equivalent field of view), relatively large sensor, Fuji color JPG engine, in camera pano mode and an optical view finder for extreme bright situations.

The great lens comes with the draw back that it sticks out quite a bit compared to other compact cameras. But photography and image quality are about compromises and the size of the lens was the compromise I was willing to take.

I took the X10 along to Paris as a safety net for those situations where I wanted more zoom than the X-Pro 1 XF lens lineup currently offers. But the primary reason was the in camera panorama stiching program.

To me, this is one of the most overlooked quality features of this camera! At first it seemed like a consumer gimmick to me. But after using it for many month it gives me capabilities of a Hasselblad X-Pan panorama camera, just digital, smaller, cheaper and more versatile (BTW, the Hasselblad X-Pan was a rebranded Fuji TX-1 build by Fuji)

The X10 is capable of 120°, 180°, 360° sweep panoramas that are stiched in camera and saved as jpg. You will need some practice to max this feature out, but this is what it is capable of:

Not your typical l'Arc de Triomphe postcard photo - Fuji X10 vertical pano

Since I found out that vertical panos also work, this has been my main style I use this feature for. Not your typical Arc de Triomphe postcard photo, eh? ;)

The lone photographer above Paris - Fuji X10 panorama

And this is a traditional 120° horizontal pano sweep from to of the Arc de Triomphe

Not your typical Eiffel Tower postcard photo - Fuji X10 vertical pano

Still, the vertical panos are so much more fun and give a new perspective of the Eiffel Tower :)

Spaceship launch pad Paris - Fuji X10 panorama

I would have needed a wide fishe eye lens to get this 180° field of view without the pano mode

Rue Chappe stairs - Paris panorama - Fuji X10

The 180° vertical pano worked pretty well on the famous "Rue Chappe stairs", too

Bibliothèque nationale de France - Fuji X10 Pano

Without the pano mode I could not have captured the impression I got when standing in front of the huge Bibliothèque nationale de France

If you already own a Fuji X10 / X100 / X-Pro 1 take this post as an inspiration to play around with the pano functions, too. Don't get frustrated if your results aren't perfect on the first few tries. It'll take some trial and error to understand what works and what doesn't.

Post a comment below or tweet me @hamburgcam if you want me to write more on my experiences with the pano mode of the three Fuji X-Cameras that I use...

And if you liked my post I am always happy if you spread the word and retweet, like or google +1 it :-)

Fuji X-Pro 1 goes to Paris

Every year I try to go on a weeken trip with photographer friends. This year we decided on going to Paris. This wasn't our first trip to Paris so I have a pretty good comparison on my experiences from previous photo visits.

In the past I used to take a heavy full frame DSLR with a bunch of good lenses with me. It seems to me that the burden of owning great lenses is that you have to decide which lens to leave at home and what kind of graeat photo opportunities you might miss due to that.

Once I did lug most of my gear with me through the city all day long that I did realize that I missed more photo opportunities while changing lenses or due to the intimidation factor of the big camera and lens. So this year was the year to go light on gear and still bring back good photos!

This was the lens line up I took along on my last trip to Paris:

Happy Bokeh Friday 17.07.09

And this was my gear I took along this time: Fujifilm X10 and X-Pro 1 (plus the Fujinon XF 35mm lens that was already packed in my jacket's pocket at the time I took this photo :-)

Happy Bokeh Friday 15.06.2012

My photographic mission on this trip was to use the X-Pro 1 for raw street photography. Henri Cartier-Bresson took many of his photos in Paris so this seemed like the perfect spot for me to give it a try. I converted most of these images from color into black & white in Adobe LightRoom 4.1

Paris Street Photography No.1 - Fuji X-Pro 1

It was really easy to go around take photos almost unnoticed with the small and unobtrusive X-Pro 1

Paris Street Photography No.2 - Fuji X-Pro 1

Framing and timing shots was really easy as I saw people walking into the scene before they were in the frame - thanks to the rangefinder style viewfinder of the X-Pro 1

Paris Street Photography No.4 - Fuji X-Pro 1

I also found the color to black and white conversion to be quite eays in LR4

Paris Photographer Reflections - Fuji X-Pro 1

And just in case you are wondering, the X-Pro 1 is capable of color photos, too ;)

Paris from a tourists point of view - Fuji X-Pro 1

Over all the city travel and street photography experience with the X-Pro 1 was very pleasing. The weather ranged from rainy to sunny and hot and I only had a small and relatively light ThinkTank Retrospective bag with me all day. There were few occasions where I would have wished for a bit longer focal length, but on those occasions I pulled out the X10.

There's more to come from my Paris trip and I'll post some really cool Fujifilm X10 shots later...

If you have any further questions leave a comment below or Twitter me @HamburgCam

And if you liked my post I am always happy if you spread the word and retweet, like or google +1 it :-)