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Features

The Fujifilm X-M1 can be comfortably used as a point-and-shoot camera, and enthusiasts will find a huge selection of manual features to dive into, as well. The camera has a large selection of special effects, plus Fuji's popular Film Simulation modes. Naturally, the X-M1 also records Full HD video. We'll cover all of those - and more - below.

Shooting Modes

As one would expect, you can access all of the X-M1's shooting modes via its mode dial. Unlike the top control dial to its right, the mode dial is 'stiffer', which makes 'accidents' unlikely.

The X-M1's mode dial has the P/A/S/M modes that one would expect from an enthusiast mirrorless camera, plus an auto mode, special effects, and scene modes for the point-and-shoot crowd.

So what are those spots on the mode dial all about? Here's a quick rundown:

Shooting mode Description
Auto Your standard point-and-shoot mode, with most shooting options locked up.
Advanced SR Auto (SR+) Similar to the regular Auto mode, but with scene selection.
Program AE Automatic shooting with full menu access. The 'Program Shift' feature allows you to adjust the aperture/shutter speed combination by using the real dial.
Shutter priority AE Allows user to adjust the shutter speed, with a range of 30 - 1/4000 secs.
Aperture priority AE Allows user to adjust the aperture. Range depends on lens used.
Manual exposure User can adjust both aperture and shutter speed. Same ranges as above, but with added 'bulb' mode for even longer exposures.
Custom settings Store your favorite camera settings in this slot.
Portrait The camera uses the best settings for these three situations.
Landscape
Sport
Scene position (SP) Additional scene modes include portrait enhancer, night, night (tripod), fireworks, sunset, snow, beach, party, flower, text.
Advanced Filters Here you'll find the camera's special effects and a multiple exposure feature.

Everything on that list should be self-explanatory, but the Advanced Filters deserve a quick mention. In addition to a two-shot multiple exposure feature, you'll find special effects such as toy camera, miniature effect, dynamic tone, and partial color.

One feature you won't find on the X-M1 is any kind of panorama shooting mode.

Bracketing

The X-M1 has a whopping four types of bracketing, including for exposure, ISO, Film Simulation mode (mentioned below), and Dynamic Range.

For exposure and ISO bracketing, you can select from 1/3, 2/3, or 1 stop increments between shots. Film Simulation mode bracketing will apply three different effects with a single exposure. DR bracketing cranks up the ISO to 800 and takes photos at DR 100%, 200%, and 400%. But more on that later.

Do note that when shooting Raw images, you can only bracket for exposure - ISO, Film Simulation and Dynamic Range bracketing are all unavailable. This may sound arbitrary, but on balance we prefer it to the situation on Fujifilm's previous X-series cameras, where using these modes turned off RAW recording without warning.

Film Simulation modes

The Film Simulation modes on the X-M1 certainly aren't new, but they're always worth a look. There are five modes to choose from, which include Provia (standard), Velvia (vivid), Astia (soft), monochrome, and sepia. The X-M1 lacks the monochrome filters and Pro Neg (high and standard) modes of the X-E1.

If you shoot Raw, you can change the Film Simulation mode of any photo that you've taken, using the in-camera processor. This lets you go even further than the bracketing feature, though it requires a bit more work.

Provia
Velvia
Astia
Monochrome
Sepia
ISO 800, 1/400 sec, f/14

Focus Modes

There are five focus modes on the X-M1, including 49-point auto, single-point select, continuous, tracking, and manual. In manual focus mode you can enlarge the frame and also take advantage of focus peaking.

Viewing the image at 100% on the LCD. Here's a zoomed-in view, with focus peaking turned on.

Focus peaking puts of a sort of 'glimmer' around the edges of a subject that is in focus. It makes finding your desired focus point considerably easier than rotating the focus ring endlessly. You can use focus peaking when viewing the full frame, or when you're zoomed in.

Highlight/Shadow Tone

The X-M1 has two adjustments for adjusting highlight and shadow tone. For each you can select from soft, med-soft, standard, med-hard, and hard. The soft setting reduces the effect (e.g. reduces contrast in the shadow regions) while the hard setting increases it. You can use these settings separately or combine them to achieve the desired effect. These features aren't true dynamic range adjustments - rather, they make adjustments to the shadow and/or highlight ends of the tone curve.

Highlight Tone

Soft (-2)
Standard (0)
Hard (+2)
ISO 400, 1/34 sec, f/3.6

In standard mode, you can barely make out the letters etched into the yellow glass on the center of the escalator. Dialing highlight tone down to soft makes the lettering visible, while the hard setting has the opposite effect. In this instance, the lower-contrast, 'Soft' setting probably provides a better match between the tone of the scene and the final result.

Shadow Tone

Soft (-2)
Standard (0)
Hard (+2)
ISO 1250, 1/16 sec, f/5.6

As with the highlight tone example, turning down shadow tone lowers the contrast in the shadows, while increasing it boosts it. There is an increase in noise here, though you'll only see it at the pixel level.

These examples show the extremes of each setting. There are 'medium' settings for both highlights and shadows and, as mentioned above, you can adjust both if you'd like.

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Comments

Total comments: 217
12
rsf3127
By rsf3127 (11 months ago)

I don't get all the hype about these fuji cameras. The image samples look dull, mushy, without contrast and unsharp when compared to NEX and the 100D either in RAW or JPEG. The ergonomy is ok and the build quality is nice, but this does not compensate for the IQ problem.

6 upvotes
AndreaV
By AndreaV (11 months ago)

Well, I own a Fuji x-Pro1 and a Sony NEX-5... the quality of the Fuji is definitely superior (most of all at high ISO) and I would say is on par with at least some FF cameras (I compared with a friend's Nikon D600) and with my Canon 1D mark III. Have you ever tried to use one of these Fujis yourself?

14 upvotes
D1N0
By D1N0 (11 months ago)

That is probably why dpreview have scored the iq higher than any of the examples you have given. They must be utterly incompetent. Either that or you are.

10 upvotes
TrojMacReady
By TrojMacReady (11 months ago)

I think a lot people put large emphasis on high ISO.

But I agree that at low ISO it does come a bit short compared to most of its peers, due the X-Trans design. A bit softer RAW files (for which you can partially compensate), a bit mushy greens in general due to the different color filters and moiré problems with diagonal lines (see test charts). And even at high ISO, you should substract about half a stop from indicated ISO's compared to most of its peers for the camera being a bit too optimistic in this regard.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
4 upvotes
unknown member
By (unknown member) (11 months ago)

Quite a few stories are suggesting that the most widespread tools (Adobe, etc.) don't process the RAW files nearly as well as they could. From what I read, Iridient seems to do the best job by far. If dpr is using Adobe, that could be a problem.

3 upvotes
Northgrove
By Northgrove (11 months ago)

Agreed, I strongly recommend professionals to look at the RAW import. There's quite a difference especially with this new X-Trans technology. Here's a DPReview user who has compared Lightroom 4.4 with Iridient 2.1.1 output, clearly showing the better clarity with Iridient: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/51732276?image=3

3 upvotes
mas54
By mas54 (11 months ago)

The IQ from my x100s is as good as it gets. Where have you seen prints from these cameras? I can make a 40x60 that is sharp all the way to the corners.
Contrast? That comes during processing.

1 upvote
AlpCns2
By AlpCns2 (11 months ago)

The "IQ problem" got the Gold Award. Odd, isn't it. Or maybe there is no real problem. Ah, choices, choices...

1 upvote
Kali108
By Kali108 (11 months ago)

The Fuji "hype" for me is...having the IQ of a Nikon D600 (I've now sold mine) in a small, light weight package. Allowing me to get images from subjects I would not get otherwise, due to the intimidation factor, etc of a larger DLSR / lens combo.
Also, now I have this IQ potential with me every single day. No way I would carry a D600 kit with me at all times. Fuji makes this a joy.

I understand why dpreview needs to use standardized tests, yet unfortunately, this results in veiling the IQ potential of the x trans sensor. Iridient Developer, C1P7 or the free supplied SilkyPix do not suffer from "mushy" greens and certainly not any lack of detail resolution.

Is the Fuji perfect? Of course not, nor is my D800 or Mamiya RZ67 ProII with a Leaf Aptus 33MP digital back.

My Fuji XP1 (with the incredible 14mm, 23mm soon, 35mm, 60mm lenses) is my favorite photographic tool. Period.

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Asylum Photo
By Asylum Photo (11 months ago)

Like every other camera, there's pros and cons. One system might fit your needs, while another doesn't. Yet both systems could very well be high quality.

0 upvotes
thx1138
By thx1138 (11 months ago)

I'm not knocking the Fuji high ISO IQ, but it's clearly doing NR even on RAW. They have not overcome the laws of physics and have not discovered miracle low noise sensor and associated electronics.

0 upvotes
D1N0
By D1N0 (11 months ago)

It takes photo's as good as the x-pro1 so the gold award is deserved.

8 upvotes
Total comments: 217
12