Following recent updates to the X-Pro1 and X-E1, Fujifilm has released a major upgrade to the X100, the original (now-discontinued) X-series model, which was announced back in 2010. Since its release, the X100 has benefitted from a series of major firmware improvements, and the latest - likely to be the last - offers faster startup time, and improvements to automatic and manual focus. Firmware v2.0 is available for download today.

The X100 has benefited from a string of firmware updates, which greatly improved the product over its lifespan. Firmware v2.0 is notable for being released after the camera has been discontinued.

This update is significant in two ways. Firstly, X100 owners are going to love it, since it promises to significantly boost the performance of their camera for no cost. It doesn't turn the X100 into an X100S, but we suspect that for a lot of owners of the original model, increased AF speed and a decent manual focus aid will keep them very happy, and will extend their relationships with the X100 for some time to come. 

And this leads us to the second respect in which Fujifilm's announcement is significant. We're pretty sure that no one has ever done this before. We've seen major updates to relatively old products before (Canon's venerable EOS 7D was given a serious shot in the arm last year) but never to a camera that has been superceded and discontinued. Updates to 'end-of-life' products are generally released to ensure compatibility with newer dependent accessories or software.

It's worth noting that reenergizing the X100 in this way won't in itself make Fujifilm any money. In fact, if it prevents some X100 users from upgrading to the X100S, the company might even lose out in the short term, without even taking the cost of research and development into account.

This looks very much like a gesture of goodwill. Plus, knowing Fujifilm's engineers as we do, we suspect that there's a degree of simple, gleeful enthusiasm here - they figured out how to do something, got excited, and went ahead and did it. Not every manufacturer would take this kind of a risk. But if there's one thing that we've learned, it's that while gestures like this might have a short-term cost, keeping your customers happy always pays off in the end. 


Press Release:

FUJIFILM LAUNCHES SIGNIFICANT FIRMWARE UPDATE FOR THE ORIGINAL X100

New firmware v2.0 delivers focus peaking, faster AF and improved close-up focus

Mississauga ON, October 18, 2013 – FUJIFILM Canada today announced a new firmware v2.0 update that dramatically improves the performance of the original FUJIFILM X100, the first model in the premium X-Series line of digital cameras.

Since its release in March 2011, Fujifilm has received meaningful feedback from X100 photographers throughout the world and this firmware upgrade reflects many of their requests.  This new firmware update delivers improved autofocus and manual focus, as well as other convenient features for users who apply the update.

“Photographers around the world have trusted their images to Fujifilm and the X-Series, and this new firmware update is concrete evidence that we are not only listening to our customers, but also working hard to improve our products on a continuing basis,” says Greg Poole, Vice President, Imaging and Recording Media Products, Fujifilm Canada.

Key Features of New X100 Firmware v2.0

Improved Auto Focus

  • Approximately 20% faster AF speed and enhanced focus distance compared to the previous firmware version
  • Close-up focus distance shortened by 30% before needing to switch to macro mode

Improved Manual Focus

  • New Focus Peaking function assists in manual focusing by enhancing the outline of the subject in high contrast
  • Improved focusing via the EVF or LCD when using wide apertures

 Improved Operability

  • The camera start-up time has been shortened by approximately 0.2 seconds.*1
  • Pressing the AF button now toggles the focus area selection screen and the area of your choice can be selected

The X100 firmware v2.0 update will be available on October 18, 2013.

To download the new firmware and instructions on upgrading your X100 camera, please visit:
http://www.fujifilm.com/support/digital_cameras/software/

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