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Hybrid (optical/electronic) viewfinder

The X-Pro1's uses a development of Fujifilm's unique hybrid viewfinder (as first seen on the X100), which projects a 'heads-up display' of all shooting functions into the camera's large direct-vision optical viewfinder. It's evolved and refined from the X100's design, and most importantly offers the choice of two magnifications to handle a wider range of lenses. For wideangle lenses the magnification is 0.37x; for 35mm or longer, an additional magnifier slides in to place to give 0.6x magnification.

Below is the view through the X-Pro1's viewfinder using the 35mm lens, with the information display in its more detailed view - roll your mouse over the buttons to switch between optical and electronic modes. The camera can display highly detailed shooting information in both modes, along with a live histogram to help judge exposure, plus configurable gridlines and a virtual horizon to aid composition.

Optical Viewfinder Display Electronic Viewfinder Display

In optical mode a frameline is shown which covers about 90% of the final image at infinity focus, to allow for parallax error and any change in the lens's angle of view on focusing. The overall view through the finder is distinctly wider than the captured area, though, as can be seen by comparing to the EVF view. The 35mm lens's barrel protrudes slightly, but not obtrusively, into the lower right corner of the view. On a bright sunny day the viewfinder overlay can be a little faint, but it's still quite visible.

In this view we've covered the viewfinder front window to obtain a clearer view of the information displayed (and deliberately activated as much of it as possible). There's a whole array of information across the top of the frameline covering secondary settings - focus mode, flash, metering, white balance, film simulation, and dynamic range expansion to the left, plus shots remaining, file quality/size and battery status to the right. You can customize which of this information you want to see in the Set-up menu (and do so for the OVF and EVF independently).

Corrected AF Frame

One feature that's not enabled by default, and we'd recommend turning on the moment you unbox the camera, is what Fujifilm calls 'Corrected AF Frame'. This compensates for the inevitable parallax error between what you see through the viewfinder and what the imaging sensor (and therefore the autofocus system) sees through the lens. It's particularly important if you use the 60mm F2.4 Macro lens.

This is the standard view through the optical finder in detailed view. The active AF point is indicated by the small white rectangle in the middle of the frame. On half-pressing the shutter, the AF point lights up in green to confirm focus, and the detailed information (including the live histogram) disappears to give a less-cluttered display for composition. The frameline shifts right and downwards to correct for parallax error, but if you look closely, the indicated AF point hasn't moved.
The 'Corrected AF Frame' option in the Shooting Menu changes how the AF point is displayed, to compensate for parallax error between the optical viewfinder and the lens. Set it to On... ...and a solid white rectangle indicates the AF point's position at infinity focus, with diagonally-offset brackets for close focus. On a half-press of the shutter, a parallax-corrected AF point is shown in green.

We think it makes sense to enable the Corrected AF Frame all the time, because it can substantially reduce the risk of misfocusing at close distances. For the very best results, though, it still makes sense to switch to the EVF for short-range shooting; the camera will force you to switch over at distances closer then about 0.6m anyway..

Hybrid viewfinder displays

This is the detailed view with the corrected AF frame display turned on. Pressing the 'DISP' button allows you to toggle to a simplified view that shows just basic exposure information, plus the frameline and focus point.
The line across the center of the frame is an electronic level, which goes from blue to green when the camera is level. Here's the EVF view of the same scene (in detailed mode). Much the same information is available, in large white or yellow icons scattered around the screen.
In OVF mode, pressing the Fn button highlights the ISO value, which you can then change using the rear dial, or left/right keys of the 4-way controller. However in EVF mode, pressing Fn brings up this distinctly obtrusive menu instead, which is changed using up/down keys of the 4-way controller.
In manual focus mode, or on half-pressing the shutter to autofocus, the camera displays a red line at the current focus distance along with a white bar indicating the depth of field. This is very conservative indeed (see below). In Program, Aperture Priority and Shutter Priority modes the live histogram can be used to help judge any exposure compensation you may wish to apply. But in manual mode it stops working properly and always indicates 'correct' exposure, which is positively misleading.
Press the AF button, and you can move the active focus point around the frame using the 4-way controller; press 'OK' to return it to the center. There's a choice of 25 positions in a 5 x 5 grid. When 'Image Disp' is enabled in the Setup menu, the X-Pro1 will switch across to the EVF after taking a picture and show this review image. It has no exposure information at all, let alone a histogram or highlight 'blinkies', making it much less useful than it really should be.

Dual magnification finder: displays with different lenses

As mentioned above the X-Pro1's optical viewfinder offers two magnifications, and the camera automatically selects between them based on the lens in use. However, if for some reason you prefer to use the other viewfinder setting, you can manually switch over by pulling and holding the viewfinder selector lever for a second or two. Here's how the viewfinder works with the three initial lenses.

Here again is the standard view with the 35mm lens, using 0.6x magnification Here's the 35mm using 0.37x magnification, and a smaller frameline to match. Note how the gridlines don't scale to the framelines.
This is the standard view for the 18mm lens, which uses 0.37x magnification. With its hood on, the lens blocks a fair bit of the viewfinder If you manually select 0.6x magnification with the 18mm lens, the camera displays yellow arrows in the corners of the frame to indicate that the image area extends beyond the viewfinder.
This is the standard view for the 60mm Macro, using 0.6x magnification and with the image area represented by a smaller frameline in the center of the finder. Note the large displacement between the infinity and close-range focus brackets. Finally here's the view using the 60mm lens with 0.37x magnification selected. The frameline occupies the central area of the 3x3 grid.

What this shows - perhaps unsurprisingly - is that it normally makes little sense to choose the 'wrong' magnification setting. But equally the option is there if you want it, and we can envisage it being useful in some situations. So it's good to see that Fujifilm has left this under user control.

Overly-conservative depth of field scale

As alluded to above, while the X-Pro1 displays a depth of field scale in the viewfinder, it's very conservative indeed as to the distance range it considers to be in focus. This means, sadly, that it's not at all useful for the common technique of 'zone focusing' - i.e. pre-setting the focus distance and aperture such that subjects across a specific range of distances will appear acceptably sharp, thus eliminating the need to refocus for each shot.

Here's an expanded view of the X-Pro1's depth of field scale using the 35mm lens. At a focus distance of about 2.2 m and an aperture of F8, most depth of field calculators will indicate an in-focus range of 1.7 - 3 m; the X-Pro1 instead shows just 2.1 - 2.4 m.

So what's going on? To understand this, you have to take into account that the concept behind Depth of Field is to determine what will be rendered 'acceptably sharp', and the results are therefore entirely dependent upon what is considered 'acceptable'. The depth of field scales on most manual focus SLR lenses are designed around a sharpness standard that's based upon printing, i.e. objects within the indicated range will look sharp when viewing a print from a 'normal' distance (considered to be roughly equal to the print's diagonal). However, the X-Pro1 instead appears to be designed to indicate what will be sharp at the pixel level on screen - a much more stringent measure of sharpness.

Overall this means that the X-Pro1's depth of field scale is telling you something different to what photographers have become used to seeing. What's more, judging from user comments it's overwhelmingly not what they want to see either. We'd love to see Fujifilm offering a choice here, perhaps allowing users to specify their own preferred standard of sharpness based on use-case scenarios (something like Print / Fine Print / Screen).

For those interested in the mathematical derivation, the X-Pro1 appears to be using a Circle of Confusion of 0.005mm diameter, which is equal to one pixel pitch. In contrast, most depth of field calculators use 0.02mm for APS-C. This means that the X-Pro1 will suggest stopping down about 4 stops further than usual to achieve the same depth of field.

As it happens, there's a deeper conceptual problem with Fujifilm's choice of 0.005mm for the circle of confusion, and this is the softening effect of diffraction. Once you stop down beyond F4, the diffraction blur circle starts to exceed the circle of confusion, and by F8 - an entirely sensible aperture to use on the X-Pro1 - it's double the diameter. In effect, this means that no part of the image will quite reach the standard of sharpness that Fujifilm has chosen to use.

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Total comments: 12

I am a rather new member and I must say that the few dopey questions I have asked have usually been answered with great information and a lack of sarcasm and judgement. They were not dopey on purpose. If anyone would like to visit the images in my portfolio you will at least know that I am not just obsessed with cameras but sing them to shoot, share, publish et. So without further ado, just purchased a new Fuji X Pro1 and bam I read the rumor page and it says Fuji X Pro2 verified rumor will be introduced this year. Besides offering the advice, "just shut up and shoot', What would you do? Is this even the right spot to leave my qesriom

1 upvote

Don't worry too much about it.I also just bought the X Pro 1,well aware of the rumors. It's all about IQ right?I can assure you,you wont be disappointed! Far away from it.And I really wonder whether the IQ(mind you, IQ!)will be very different from this one.
All else, yes for sure.

1 upvote
Don Sata

It will take you a bit of effort getting used to the AF of this camera but it's very engaging to use, the VF is great and images are great too.

If you don't shoot action (like sports, pets or running children) you will be ok.

1 upvote

I bought an X-Pro1 a week or so ago - I've got a use for it (I wanted a compact 50 that's not too demanding) and they can be had new for £350 in the UK! Happy days. No doubt a new flagship X-Pro2 will be announced soon, but it'll be a very expensive camera, presumably sitting above the X-T1 in the range.


Fujifilm has fixed most of the reported issues (like slow AF) with incremental updates. I got a chance to review it recently


What is the seemingly insurmountable problem with studying a traditional 35mm film rangefinder and re-engineering it into an equally capable digital rangefinder instead of trying to re-invent the wheel? The idea that you cannot accurately use manual focus is absurd. The whole focusing by wire thing is absurd. Again, why is everyone trying to re-invent the wheel?

Comment edited 1 minute after posting

things what you are asking do exist and they are called Leica.

paul simon king

looking at these RAW examples the fuji x Pro looks softer nad less saturated than the Fuji X100s

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
Dave Chilvers

After using one for a while and with the latest firmware I find the camera to be quite superb. Lets face it, most of us are looking for IQ firstly and has been said in the review lenses like the 35 1.4 are second to none in my book.


I just purchased a used X-_pro1 like new in box and I am very curious about the firmware updates that seem to address its previous shortcomings. Should I ask the seller about these because I am naive and no nothing about these on her camera is it a simple fix to update the firmware Your recommendation I don't even know the latest and best ones. or are they available fre e or can they be user updated. and again what is the latest firm ware and how would you perceive this as situation.


The latest firmware update as of May 2015 is version 3.4 and can be downloaded from Fuji's website for free. Also check to see if your lenses are also up to date.

1 upvote

Firstly I really would like to thank almost everyone for the generous and non combative input. So as long as I am curious about one further issue, any gracious input will be devoured with great enjoyment. Some lenses, whether short, medium or full on zooms have O.I.S and some don't. So any other advice on gaining sharpness and stability that works well for you, hardware wise , please let me know because I am well aware of the great impact shutter speed and stillness etc. have. And please take a moment to take a look at my gallery just so you understand that it is images and not equipment I am really hungry for. Thanks in advance, and yeah thanks Light Catcher LT for the real corn on the cob. "things what you are asking do exist and they are called Leica..Really??

Total comments: 12