I have been a hobbyist photographer since 1979, that’s 35 years! I started out with a Zenit 35mm film SLR but quickly moved onto the Olympus OM system with an OM30 which was later added to with x2 OM2 SP’s. In 2000, I foolishly ditched all the Oly gear to get into digital and purchased, of all things, a Sony F505 and then ‘upgraded’ to a Sony F707. I fortunately saw the error of my ways and in 2005 bought into Nikon with a D70s and the venerable 18-70 kit lens. Over the next 7 years camera bodies were changed to include D90, D300, D700 and numerous lenses were added during that time. I always hankered after a smaller camera and tried out a number of offerings such as the Nikon P7100, which I still have, and a Panasonic LX5 but neither really did it for me.
In January 2012 I purchased a Fuji XE1 with 18-55 kit lens to see if this system was a viable option for me. I was blown away by the output of the files and that little kit lens attached to such a small body. The camera proved to be so portable that it was my go to camera despite having the D300, D700 and numerous f2.8 glass still to hand. The Nikon gear did not see light of day in 6 months. At this point I decided to sell the Nikon gear, some of which was purchased by members of this forum, and even though I loved to use the Nikon, especially that D700, I have no regrets of selling it on, none at all. From the funds raised through the sale of Nikon, I re-invested in Fuji glass which has today escalated to a collection of x9 Fuji lenses. In March 2014 I added a lightly used XPro1 body.
Fuji does have some quirks and frustrations, including the AF ability (of which is now greatly improved through firmware releases and which makes the cameras very different to when they were first released), but for me I have enjoyed photography much more in the past two years than any time before. The bodies just feel right in the hand and are compact and discreet in their use. The lenses (XF range – have not used the XC range) are beautifully engineered, light weight and as sharp, or sharper than any lenses I have used in the past. The downside of the lenses for me is that because they are so good I keep on buying them and now my small kit is not so small!
I have used the X system for travel, portraiture (including in the studio), macro, landscape and just about anything really except sport, but I have rarely ever shot sport. I have shot long exposure, low light, natural light and with studio flash, It has never let me down and trust me, I have put it through its paces in minus 20 degree C to +40 degree C temperatures and it has always been faultless, you just have to make sure that you have plenty of spare batteries! The one problem I continue to have with the XE1 is in a studio environment using studio flash. As it only has an EVF, when the lens is stopped down to f8/f11 it is difficult to see how you are composing the frame as the EVF (and LCD display) are WYSIWYG.
I am looking forward to future developments from Fuji, I believe they will be a much bigger player in the field of ILC bodies. Fuji seems to listen to customer feedback and as such look after their customers with firmware updates improving performance of their product(s) even on the ‘older’ and discontinued bodies which I have. There are numerous new firmware releases due out this week (18/12/14) and both the XE1 and XP1 will see some changes. One could argue that Fuji should have got it right first time but some of these added features just weren't available at release and have become standard on the newer bodies. Where technology on the older bodies allows new updates Fuji just go ahead and release them rather than try to push owners to re-invest in the latest and greatest.