Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Is the X100F good for documentary photography?

If you want to document a certain topic or event you may have different needs when it comes to the camera. For my taste the camera needs to be small, quiet and unobtrusive. The performance in low light should be good because of changing situations. I recently visited a video games exhibition with a friend and I captured some images there.

even in this situation Mark wasn't noticing me

The first thing to mention is that no one asked me to lock the camera away, because they are not allowed. A good thing to have a camera that doesn't stand out too much. There were some situations were a big and loud camera would also have spoiled the situation. The Fuji was near silent with it's leaf shutter and most of the people were too busy to notice someone holding a tiny thing to his head and looking into their direction. Do this with a big bulky DSLR with that loud shutter. That is why most of the documentary photographers used a Leica over the years.

The new X100F is instantly ready to shot after you switched it on which is good, because you need to be quick. My Auto-ISO settings are stored in three different profiles to match the different situations that can happen (street, indoors, and very bad light). Just press the fn-key on the EVF/OVF lever and dial in the right one. I use only the EVF in dimly lit environments where the auto-focus struggles a bit and it works more reliable in that mode hitting the target most of the times.

The new sensor still produces great images that have that great organic look even at ISO 6400. When you apply one of the many film simulations they look great without much editing. I also found that the overall performance of the camera is great without any showstoppers even under tricky conditions. Compared with the X100S I owned before this camera is a giant step forward for me. The faster and more reliable auto-focus is important for shooting indoors where zone-focusing does not work that good because of the wide open aperture.

What are your documentary experiences with this camera?



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