Fujifilm X70 Review

Fujifilm X70 review
Even though the Fujifilm X70 has a high price tag, its image quality is strong enough to justify its cost. Amazon.com

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The Bottom Line

The look and design of the Fujifilm X70 digital camera will grab your attention immediately. It looks a lot like a film camera that may have been popular a few decades ago. But don't let this model's retro look fool you. As my Fujifilm X70 review shows, the X70 has plenty of updated features that allow it create extremely high-quality images.

Its APS-C sized image sensor allows photographers to create some great looking photos with the Fujifilm X70.

Its image quality will compare favorably to an entry-level DSLR camera, which is a strong level of performance for a fixed lens model. It has full manual control options, giving intermediate and advanced photographers the ability to create the exact type of images they want. 

Although the X70 also has automatic shooting modes that will work well for less experienced photographers, its price tag of several hundred dollars probably will keep it out of the hands of beginning shooters. Fujifilm has aimed this model more at experienced photographers looking for a small camera that will excel when shooting portraits.

The X70, unfortunately, has some oddities that may frustrate some photographers, including a lack of an optical zoom measurement in the prime lens, no popup flash, and no built-in viewfinder. Because of all of the dials and buttons included with this model, it will take some practice to learn to use it efficiently.

So if you're willing to spend some time with the X70, you'll be pleased with the final results you can achieve!

Specifications

  • Resolution: 16.3 megapixels

  • Optical zoom: None, 28mm prime lens
  • LCD: 3.0-inch, 1,040,000 pixels (tiltable and touch enabled)
  • Maximum image size: 4896 x 3264 pixels
  • Battery: Rechargeable Li-Ion
  • Dimensions: 4.43 x 2.54 x 1.75 inches
  • Weight: 10.6 ounces (without battery and memory card)
  • Image sensor: APS-C CMOS, 23.6 x 15.6 mm
  • Movie mode: HD 1080p

Pros

  • Excellent image quality in both JPEG and RAW formats
  • Plenty of dials and rings simplifies changing the camera's settings
  • One of the thinnest cameras with an APS-C sized image sensor
  • Very sharp LCD screen can tilt up to 180 degrees and has touch capabilities
  • Maximum ISO setting is 51,200 for good results in low light

Cons

  • No optical zoom capabilities with the prime lens (which has only one focal length)
  • No popup flash unit (must add an external flash to the hot shoe, but not included)
  • No built-in viewfinder
  • Many of the camera's buttons are too small to be used comfortably
  • Pricey model that has a limited audience with no optical zoom lens

Image Quality

Few cameras that measure less than 2 inches in thickness offer an image sensor as large as the APS-C sized sensor that Fujifilm included with the X70, which means this is one of the best thin cameras in terms of image quality that is available on the market. An APS-C sized image sensor is common to find in entry-level DSLR cameras, but you obviously aren't going to squeeze a DSLR camera into a large pocket, as you can do with the X70.

The X70's image sensor carries 16.3 megapixels of resolution, which lags a bit behind some of the newer DSLR cameras that carry a similar price tag to the X70. Still, this level of resolution is large enough that you can create sharp and vibrant photographs that can be printed and displayed at large sizes.

Low light image quality with this model is a bit of a mixed bag. If you choose to shoot without a flash, you can increase the ISO setting all the way to 51,200. And the X70 does a great job with little to no noise in images at ISO settings up to 6400. If you want to use a flash though, you'll have to attach an external one to the hot shoe, as Fujifilm oddly chose not to give the X70 any type of built-in flash unit.

Performance

The Fujifilm X70 works pretty quickly, putting together performance times that you'd expect to find in cameras in this price range. There's little to no shutter lag with this camera, meaning it would be great for sports photography if it had any kind of optical zoom capability. 

Shot to shot delays are a little longer than I like to see in this type of intermediate to advanced camera, averaging about 1.5 seconds between shots. But you can negate this problem by shooting in one of the full resolution continuous mode options.

Battery performance is a little below average for a camera in this price range too, as the Fujifilm X70 can shoot between 200 and 250 shots per charge. Then again, because this is a camera that's thinner than most models in this price range, its battery is thinner too, which leads to some of the slightly below average battery performance.

Design

Fujifilm has had a lot of success with its retro looking cameras that remind photographers of old film cameras, including models such as the Fujifilm X-A2 or the Fujifilm X-T1. The X70 fits in a similar category design-wise, as it has a black body design with plenty of dials and buttons. Another design offers a silver trim, which looks great.

Its design is so different from most digital cameras that you will find yourself frustrated with some aspects of using the X70. It definitely takes some practice to figure out how to use this camera in an efficient manner. So if you aren't going to be willing to spend a bit of time with your camera, you may want to move toward a model with a more traditional design.

Although Fujifilm did not include a viewfinder with the camera body, you can add one to the hot shoe (at an extra cost). And the sharp LCD screen is tiltable and touch enabled, which is a nice feature.

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