Enthusiast compact camera roundup
12MP 2/3" X-Trans sensor | 28-112mm equivalent F2.0-2.8 lens | On-chip phase detection AF
What we like:
- Fast F2.0-2.8 zoom lens
- Good image quality
- Direct manual controls
What we don't:
- Below-average battery life
- No movie record button
- ISO/DR relationship a little complicated
The Fujifilm X20 is the follow-up to the X10 that adds a new X-Trans CMOS sensor, faster AF system, and enhanced optical viewfinder, while keeping the sturdy, retro-inspired body and fast zoom lens.
"The lens is one of the big selling points of the X20"
The X20 uses the same color filter array as Fujifilm's other APS-C cameras and lacks the optical low-pass filter. The result is photo quality that is noticeably better than the X10. The lens is also one of the big selling points of the X20. With a maximum aperture range of F2.0-2.8, the 28-112mm equivalent zoom is good for low-light photography.
The camera is fairly responsive with twin rear dials, an exposure compensation dial, and customizable Fn button. The addition of a quick-menu button also improves the X20's usability. DSLR owners will appreciate the optical viewfinder that now overlays key exposure data and focus confirmation information (the only compact to offer this).
The X20 offers good access to manual controls to serve enthusiasts looking for a more compact option alongside their DSLR, but also has enough automatic settings to 'set it and forget it' for the point-and-shoot crowd. Very good image quality and a lens that's fast all the way though its range make it still more attractive - limited third-party support for its Raw files is the only major thing to count against it.