The Fujifilm X-A5 Gets a Big Brother

Fujifilm today announced the X-T100. This new camera is mostly the X-A5 internals coupled with an EVF and the three-way tilting LCD from the more DSLR-like Fujifilm bodies.

bythom fujifilm xt100

Let's get one thing out of the way fast: I love the X-A5's images. The 24mp Bayer sensor in the X-A5—and now in the X-T100—produces really nice, clean, detailed images that work buttery smooth in most raw converters. What it doesn't do is real 4K video (only 15 fps), or really fast image handling (only 6 fps with a small buffer). Some of that latter bit is probably the UHS-1 slot on the X-A5 and X-T100, but still, the point I'm trying to make here is that these two bodies are not the ones you want for fast action or high end video. The X-T100 does get phase detect autofocus on the sensor, though, which should improve on the slightly sluggish performance of the X-A5.

At US$599 for the body, or US$699 for the body plus the excellent 15-45mm kit lens, the X-T100 looks like a real useful addition to the consumer side of the X system and gives people another relatively small mirrorless option to choose instead of a compact camera with a smaller sensor (unless you want a shirt pocket camera, in which case you need to go with the smaller sensor cameras). The X-T100 comes in black only, or two different forms of panda-type style (light top over dark bottom, one of which is called champaign).

The EVF is only 2.36m dot, as you might expect in such a lower-priced mirrorless product, and the camera has a top shutter speed of 1/4000 and a flash sync speed of only 1/180, the type of cost reduction effort we usually see in the lower-priced cameras. The X-T100 does surprisingly retain the built-in flash of the X-A5 (GPN of 7m at base ISO).

I’m betting that this is going to be a pivotal camera for Fujifilm and quickly attract a following. I also predict that the number one complaint will become the lack of a front grip bump (the X-A5 has one), though there is an option for an add-on. The X-T100 comes with a little screw-in grip. 

Compared to the X-T20, Fujifilm’s previous lowest-cost DSLR-type mirrorless camera: you don’t get an X-Trans sensor, you have no way to do back button AF, you don’t get a full 30/2/25/24 fps 4K, you don’t get UHS-II support, and surprisingly, the X-T100 is a bit heavier than the X-T20. On the flip side, the X-T20 doesn’t have the X-T100’s nice multi-swivel LCD design. I think a lot of folk are going to get confused by Fujifilm’s multiple cameras with narrow price points and feature differentiations. 

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