A mish-mosh of coolness! Fuji X100, Ricoh GV-2, X1 firmware & more!

A mish-mosh of coolness

How cool is this?

Check this out! I recently found out that the little RICOH OVF (Optical View Funder), the GV-2, will work wonderfully on the E-P2 or E-Pl2 with the 14mm lens. The OVF is a 28mm VF so it is a perfect match and looks Sexy as can be! You can buy the little OVF at popflash.com and it runs under $170 so it is not exactly cheap but it is much smaller than the Oly EVF. The build and quality is superb. Amazon also sells it and Amazon ships it. They seem to charge a little more for it though.

Here is a little press release from a new site by Jorge Torralba

RangeFinderImages.com goes live! I am pleased to announce that RangeFinderImages.com (RFI) has gone live. The original designer and creator of rangefinderforum has taken the concept to the next level by creating one of the most advanced galleries catering to rangefinder photographers. There are a million and one photography forums but there is only one RFI. The photos search capabilities of the site are unmatched by any other except for their sister sites. The many years of interacting with other photographers on the net in forums and galleries has resulted in a custom developed software package to meet the requirements of most enthusiasts out there. Feel free to give them a try and begin sharing your work. Did I mention that it’s 100% free?

More Fuji X100 tests, but not by me…YET.

photo courtesy of quesabesde.com

Seems to be some testing going on in the Fuji X100 world. I’ve contacted Fuji and they told me I can’t get a hold of one until the final firmware so hopefully in the next 2-3 weeks. Until then, enjoy this little preview (although it is in Spanish).

X100 Preview with Samples!


Looks like lensrentals.com still has the M9 special edition set that comes with the chrome 35 Summicron ASPH. Brown Ostrich Leather covering, chrome body, ostrich leather strap, sapphire glass LCD screen and only 500 sets made WORLDWIDE. Gorgeous limited edition set that is actually a deal in the world of Leica special editions. I’d buy it if I had the cash. But I wouldn’t be afraid to use it. If you want it, act fast! The last time I linked to the ones at B&H they sold both within hours! Check out the one left at lensrentals.com HERE.

Odd but interesting. A Telephoto for your Iphone?

Seems like photojojo has created a telephoto lens for your Iphone. Hmmm, seeems to me it would be hard to keep your phone in your pocket. I can see it now…”Is that an Iphone tele lens in your pocket or are you just happy to see me”? Check it out here!

The Leica X1 Firmware…where is it?

One of the site sponsors, Dale Photo has a shiny new Black X1 in stock but where is the new firmware Leica promised us months ago? I was told 1st quarter of 2011 so I expect it anytime in the next 2-3 weeks. Leica is always so slow with the updates but let’s hope they did improve the AF like they said they did. From what I have heard, it will be much faster. I am guessing they are doing this to answer to the newer cameras like the Fuji X100. That is one cool thing about Leica. They only release new models every 3-3 1/2 years for their major cameras. I do not expect an X2 until late 2012. Same goes for an M10. I am excited to see what the new firmware update will bring.


Was having a chat the other day with ~6, who kindly donated his M9 for the GREAT LEICA M9 CONTEST (winner announced March 1st 2011) and it appears we will be having more contests with some VERY cool prizes. Maybe not as cool as a signed M9 but I am talking some GREAT prizes. We are still talking about things so when I find out more I will announce it. We may have one starting right after the M9 winner is announced! Stay tuned!

Also, if you “like” my new facebook page for this website you are automatically entered to win one prize every month! Starting March 1st I will pick one facebook “fan” at random to win a small photo prize! The winner selection will be totally random and all you have to do is LIKE THIS PAGE to enter. You will be entered for every monthly give-away which will take place on the 1st of each month!

Be sure and LIKE the page by clicking here, then clicking LIKE if you want to enter 🙂

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  1. Hey Steve, I followed your link to x100 preview article in Spanish and used google chrome’s translate feature to translate the whole page to English in my iMac. The translation isn’t perfect, but quite understandable. Just a suggestion if anyone wants to read the article and don’t know Spanish.

  2. @Steve Jones: yep I’m with you! A crazy world it is! Lot of people just only read reviews, haunting forums for new camera specs etc. But they never ever shooting… :). Maybe they don’t like photography at all? hahaha.

  3. So I’m not excited about the X100. However I’m a little excited about the X200…but will probably wait for the X300. I know what you’re thinking…if I bought the X100 I could take a lot of pictures before the
    X300 or EPL3 comes out. I can anyway. Back to that Leica M6TTL. No worries about noise reduction, pixels, lack of interchangeable lenses,formats, sensor sizes. Just…..

  4. I think photographers are worshipping new technology too much these days. Who wants to buy a new model every two or three months? As you have said yourself Steve there’s a new 4/3 lens coming along every five minutes but that doesn’t make me happy. When I buy a camera or lens I want it to be good for five or ten years before it becomes outdated. If I’d bought the first Oly. EP1 I’d now be upgrading to the EP2…no wait EPL2…no wait better wait for the EPL3..oh heck, maybe I’ll just buy an X1. But that was last week, now eveyone’s saying the X100 will be better…oh dear. Think I’ll just ride my bike today instead. The products have become too thick and fast and too disposable for my liking.
    Thank goodness for film. No need to update my M6 TTL. Sanity restored.

    Are camera manufacturers doing a good job by giving us all these choices and advances. You might think so but then why are there so many forums and discussions about..if only this camera had great
    noise reduction or interchangeable lenses or full HD movie mode ??? If the cameras were so good we wouldn’t need to keep upgrading every month.They should get it right to begin with. Case in
    point… Leica X1 could have had fast focus to begin with ( it’s not mysterious tech in the 21st century ) and it could have had an f2 lens. Really it could, This is Leica for heaven’s sake. The products are rushed out to get them to the market quickly.

    Do you know that iPad 3 is already being touted before we even have iPad 2?

    Don’t get me wrong. Advances are good. But before we have enough tome to make the most of them,
    the products are becoming obsolete.

    • I agree with some of what you are saying.

      One thing I liked about the X1, and something in the background when I bought it, is that your money goes to great build quality and great image quality (and also, a good German living for the assemblers). Build quality makes a camera last a long time. Image quality is timeless- good image quality 50 years ago is still good image quality today. The IQ of the X1 won’t become obsolete either.

      Leica doesn’t release a new camera every year like the others. So that comforted me knowing that I wouldn’t feel obsolete as fast anyway.

      Also, the fact that the X1 was low on features was actually attractive to me. When people talk about video capability, image stabilization, I think- so what? I don’t want video and I can just increase my X1’s shutter speed! And so on and so on. When a camera has a lot of features it tells me that they are trying to hide something- like bad build quality, cheap production, or other things. I had a lot of cameras feature packed that were crap and each one died on me soon.

      My X1 takes amazing pictures. It’s built like a tank. It’s gorgeous and it’s appeal rests on simplicity and a nostalgia, not complexity, features, and being the “latest.” It should last a while and would be a great digital companion to your beautiful M6. Don’t listen to the others way more people love their X1 than otherwise.

  5. Steve I love the site and it’s one of the few sites I check daily BUT.. You keep suggesting that the X100 is a competitor to the X1 and it’s so bothersome. They’re not even in the same league…The X100 is more like quality, cheaper, updated version of an M8.

    • The X100 is a direct competitor to the X1. A little bigger, viewfinder, faster lens, etc. It is not a competitor to an M8 as the X100 is a fixed lens camera, will not give the crispness and detail of an M8 with a good lens and is not a rangefinder. Period.

      So yea, the X100 is like a hot rod X1. Why do you think Fuji named it the X100? 🙂

  6. Steve, as soon as you get your hands on the X100, it would be so awesome to see a Wild West Shootout with it and the X1. You could play well with the cheesiness of it. You could take your son on a trip to Tombstone, AZ (not too far from you I don’t think) where the famous shootout occurred, for a “shoot-out” just taking “shots” of the same stuff in the tourist town or whatever, and post the files here and your (likely) brilliant real world review. It would be a great focus, and also perhaps sprinkling some Ricoh, E-PL2, and GF1/2, or whatever else you want to throw in the mix for that genre of high performance compact cameras.

    It would be the greatest review ever!

  7. Why the comment that the X1 is 2yrs old, they only came to the U.K in feb so it is 1yr old and a superb camera.

  8. Still not understanding all that X1 bashing, it’s the best camera I ever had, and focus isn’t really all *that* slow really… and I doubt if a firmware update will really speed it up all that much since it seems limited by the hardware choices made for its design. The Elmarit f/2.8 ASPH lens is amazingly beautiful really. And of course we need to test the new picture upload function too 🙂 Leica X1 shot… ha.

    • You don’t understand the X1 bashing because you are a photographer and care only about making photos. Very refreshing.


    • The sensor limitation is a rumor started by forum members in the hope of an explanation. It was never substantiated and has been contradicted by other models sharing a similar, if not the same, sensor.. like the gxr.

      As far as the supposition that everyone who wants faster AF can’t possibly serious about photography.. that’s.. well… disappointing and flippant.

      For those with more limited means, I see nothing wrong with wanting a premium product with great IQ to catch up technologically with the competition.. it has nothing to do with passion, skill, experience, etc.

      The x1 is a slow camera. For many people that is fine. For some it is not. There are plenty of ‘photographers’ that assert the camera is slow.

      The IQ is great.. hopefully the firmware will round out the package.

      • Hey –
        I recently just got the X1 and it’s beautiful. It’s got a true Elmarit. The images are amazing. An M mount 24 Elmarit lens alone costs double so I don’t see what all the fuss is about. It’s got one of the best sensors on the market for a non DSLR and yields real Leica “look” images so it’s a great small companion….

        Sure AF is a bit slow but it could be a computing issue in the camera’s servo for which firmware is being modified…

        Besides that its a great camera for what it is intended for.
        If you want to shoot sports get a D3s.

        I create images and take photographs…. I do not need video in a camera. If I need to shoot video I would worry about acquiring a real video camera.

        • I couldn’t agree more. I don’t care about video either, and the x1 has great IQ.. but even in Steve’s latest NEX review it’s cited as slow. 🙂 I really hope Leica take care of that!

  9. Hey Steve, do you know if the RICOH OVF will fit the Panasonic GF1 in terms of fit and coverage with the 14mm lens?

      • it’s not enough to just fit in the shoe, there is also the position/height of the OVF in order to cover the same FOV of the lens.

  10. Loving this camera more and more. Fixed lens doesn’t bother me. I think it is the way to go for this camera. The look is spot on for me too. Nice!

    Hey, just seen the new upload file option and am going to give it a try: M7, Summilux 50mm – I was going to enter this into the Christmas competition but was out of time!


    • Haha….spoken like a true red-blooded male. I don’t blame you mate, given the choice between sitting at dinner with either my wife or myself is a no-brainer. Of course you wouldn’t be able to talk gear with her as she has less than zero interest in that department.


  11. Fuji X100 base-ISO samples look somewhat better this time. Anyway, the jury is still out on this one… I am quite impressed by the high-ISO samples, though! ISO6400 looks totally useable. Not bad, after all. Can’t wait until Steve gives it a spin.

    Greg Shanta

  12. Jorge Torralba is a cool guy. He’s got some very good sites running (NikonImages, ZeissImages, LeicaImages and now RFI), that focus on the image and not the gear, so you don’t get the usual bitching and moaning. I support him!


  13. As much as I like Leica, sometimes, what they do or don’t do, really hacks me off. They keep up with the special editions when people are aching for more mainstream stuff, like a 50 lux. Sorry, small rant.

    • Thanks for the heads up.. no big surprise there. Either they wanted to protect the advances from fuji.. or make sure they added the advances from fuji I’d guess.

      Hopefully sooner than later. 🙂

  14. X1: In a few months the x1 will be 2 Years old and people are still waiting for the firmware like it should be from the beginning. And in digital world after 2 years most of us anyway lust for a new object of photographical love. Even if Leica should get the x1 working, its too late. Meantime she broke the hearts most of the x1 lovers.

  15. I don’t particularly care what a camera looks like (well, no hot pink cammo pattern wraps please) so long as it works well.. however.. is it just me or does the finish on the fuji look really cheap-o?

    I have one on preorder.. so it’s not a case of haterade.. but it looks like fleck painted plastic with a garbage wrap bag textured for the grip..hope it looks better in real life.. but don’t really care so long as it’s not falling apart and works well.

  16. Wow… You are too cool, Steve! The Ricoh VF looks really cool with the E-P2 and 14mm set up. Can’t wait for the result of the M9 contest =D!!!!

  17. You know, if the X1 lens was f/2 (or better yet 1.8), I’d be more excited about the update. For a guy like me, the little Leica is still so costly, it’d pretty much have to be my main system, and at 2.8 with only iso 3200 available, it just won’t get done some of the jobs I need my main system to do. Man, that black one is so gorgeous, though, with a VF and grip, ahhh…! There was a special edition one named after some old time F1 driver (I forget), that had the Leica dot blacked out and a red top on the pop up flash. Talk about second kind of cool?!

    And I must be the only stickinthemud in the world who’s not all that excited about the Fuji. That hybrid VF is so complex, it just almost has to have early bugs. Fuji have hyped this thing for so long and expectations are so high… I don’t know, it’ll need to be near perfect not to be a disappointment. Also, it’s a pretty good sized camera, that’s going to push it into main system category, not a back-up/take along. It does have the 35/2 that I wish the X1 had, but so many new systems, such complexity… I hope it’s great, but will wait and see.

    We need an actual photographer to test it, er gee, like you, Steve. 🙂

    • I was excited at first about the Fuji, but now that it’s sunk in that the lens is fixed, I’m not so sure anymore. I agree that Fuji has hyped this a bit too long.

    • First try at dl a pic. Here’s I hope a shot of the Jochen Rindt spl ed X1 (only 68 made) that I reference above.



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