A Happy Fuji X-E1 Owner – By Patrick Dricot

Hello Steve,

My name is Patrick, I am 46 (yes, I know I am not that young) and come from Belgium. I read your blog everyday (and when I say everyday, it is really everyday : once in the morning – first thing I do when having breakfast – and once in the evening – after a hard working day…).

In fact, I have discovered your blog some time in June of this year when I was trying to find nice reviews of the Fujifilm X10 – and I did on your blog ! Your review and another one from the “Le monde de la photo” told me : “buy it ! own it !”. And yes I did both (buy and own).

A little history now :

Until not so far ago, I was using a Nikon D3000 together with a 35mm 1.8 and also a macro 1:1 Sigma 105mm 2.8. I had some fun, yes, but not that much, because I was not often very happy with the results.

And then a few months ago, I started to hear about Fuji X10 (no, I had not heard about Fuji X100, seems strange, hein ?) and told myself that seen my great “artistic” work, I would rather have a good compact and try to have nice family and holiday shots.

So I bought my X10 just before summer holidays and some miracle happened : just the fact to have that little beautiful object in my hands made me want to shoot all the time, anything passing before my eyes. And I really started to feel that I would maybe become addict to it. Back home, when I saw the results on my iMac, I was bluffed (with a little post processing of course on iPhoto). I took thousands of shot between July and early November…

In the meantime, I heard about Fuji X-PRO1 and started to read everything about it (and your review of course) and felt that it could be something for me despite all quirks, but the IQ seems to be there. But the price of it stopped me since it was over my budget.

I was disappointed but not for long…. In september, X-E1 came to my eyes and I knew from the start that this would be the one for me – same IQ than X-PRO1 but cheaper. Two long months to wait until early november when I was lucky enough to find my X-E1 lost in a display without any price, ignored by anyone but me.

It is now almost 3 weeks since we met, X-E1 and me, and after hundreds of shots, I think I may say that I almost fell in love with him. Yes I know (and I confirm) that the AF is not that reliable in low light conditions but manual focus is not as bad as I read in some reviews. High ISO pics are great with some noise, but like film grain (some friends of mine told me that). Colours are beautiful. It feels so nice to hold him. It nice so pleasant to look at it. On the streets, people think you are an old fashion photographer with his old film camera (and I like that). And so many things to say…

But really, what makes me fond of him is that I am now really addict to photography, wanting all the time to go out and shoot whatever the weather. Until now, I have never considered myself more than a family photographer but now I know something is happening. You want to know why ? Just because now I like my pictures ! Do the others like them ? I hope so and will let you have a look of some of them.

Steve, hope you will find some time to read this – sorry for being so long – and that you will enjoy my pictures as I enjoy yours.

Bye bye from Belgium !



  1. I have an X10 and would like your views as to how much of a leap forward would the XE1 be, what is the most significant change in terms of IQ between the two? Many thanks

    • X10 vs X-E1 will be significant change in IQ. The sensor is much much larger in the EX-1 and therfore will give you more of everything. More DR, better color, better noise performance, richer files, and the ability to shoot with shallow DOF.

  2. Great little review and beautiful photos. I like how each conveys a mood and some mystery.

    I recently bought an X-E1 too, having used a bulky Nikon D7000. I love the camera; it’s a pleasure to use and returning to controls for exposure settings is actually calming. I’m just hoping to see good RAW processing soon.

    As much as I like my cute little Fuji, I can’t say that I love it as being an English speaker it is only an “it”, sadly. Much more passionate, of course, to be able to think of your camera as a he or she. It’s a sexy little thing and deserves a gender.

  3. thanks for sharing! I have been leaning towards this camera… can’t afford the Sony Rx1 but I like what I see here!

  4. “people think you are an old fashion photographer with his old film camera”
    Did you get the black or the silver edition?
    I hesitate between the more retro silver edition or the more discrete black edition…
    In fact I would prefer pepole not to notice me, or the camera.
    Thanks for this great user report!

    • Hello urB, in fact i own the silver one just because it was the only one available end of october. But it would have been so hard to choose between silver or black… Now, that is true that black version is more discrete. I am now waiting the Gariz leather half case which will make it more gorgeous. Cheers

  5. Nice review Mr Patrick 🙂

    Les photos qui illustrent votre review sont très belles, et effectivement le XE1 est très agréable à utiliser 🙂

  6. Great post Patrick! I bought an X10 recently and while I predominately use film, I’ve been very impressed with it. My friend has the X100 which brilliant too….obviously has the detailed viewfinder (as does the XE-1). Very nice photos too my friend… I especially like the cat 🙂

  7. In Dutch it’s also a she.

    And Patrick: I love the photo of the cat, but also the one in the train with the face mirroring in the window.

    greetz from the Netherlands.

  8. The lens being attached or not is the only thing I can imagine considering my camera being male or female. In case of the XE1 however i am willing to be straight or gay or anything… I am seriously considering one for my next trip to Rome for some serious street shooting, probably prefering to mount the 35 on it. This kind of cameras tend to bring photography back to the essentials just because of the way they make you shoot. Nice post Patrick I like the pic with the trees et ‘le pain quotidien’, trés belle focusing et lumiere fantastique.
    Ernesto, je pense que j’ai trouvé les 2 fautes; est-ce-que c’est possible que vous avez oublié les accents au dessus le ‘a’ et ‘egalement’?
    Roeland (Belgium)

  9. Nice shots thank you so much for posting this I just got this camera it seems really great for still subjects like the M9 I have tried some leica glass with the fuji adapter and it seems to work almost better than my M9 with out any adjustment other than setting the focal,length fuji really have something here look out Leica hey Steve grab one of these with the m adapter and give it a whirl I think you’ll like it

  10. Thank you, Patrick! You have some very impressive pictures also on your Flicker page. Is this all post-processed or straight from the camera?

    • Thanks you. There is always at least some process in iPhoto. I sometimes do some process with Aperture (cross process for example), but on my old iMac, it is really too slow, so most of the time I avoid. For b/w, I have used the trial version of Nik silver efex, but it is over and i think a bit expensive for my needs. If you have some nice free tools for b/w, I am interested.

  11. Fantásticas fotos Patrick.
    Trés bonnes photos
    I have my Ex1 in box, i hope to unbox it tomorrow.
    Saludos desde España.

  12. Great images, both technically, and, more importantly, aesthetically.

    By the way, you may think that 46 is not young, but I think 46 is not old.

  13. Great, great pictures, with great atmosphere.
    Bravo Patrick, un vrai régal ! Pas de flickr ou de blog pour suivre ton travail ?
    Bye bye from France !

  14. Doh! Couple of errors in previous post. Wish you could edit a post. Steve?

    “but iT seems larger”
    “but could NOT get the aperture to change”

  15. Had a first look at one yesterday. My god the 18-55 is a bit large. The EVF is no better than the X100 (but is seems larger) and not nearly as good as an OMD (which has much better tonality than all others and no motion lag). There was significant motion lag when panning. Switched the lens to aperture priority but could get the aperture to change. What the?! Didn’t seem to really fit in the hand but it is a better size than the too small OMD (A camera I want to love but can’t – tiddly buttons, tiny on screen info, complex menus..).
    Focus seemed snappy though. Switching back to my X100 I can see how right Fuji got it the first time (well after a firmware upgrade or two. I will wait for the X101 (with a fixed 18-55 or even better 15-85 and maybe with the X-Trans sensor and an aperture ring that is a knurled ring with no “knobs” that can be hard locate by feel).

  16. Really good shots, Patrick; the cat and train are superb! How did you process the last pic; it looks almost “too” sharp.

    • Thanks Tad ! The train pic has been processed in iPhoto. I only add contrast and under expose a bit. After conversion in bw of course.

  17. Hi, Patrick, it is great you join the X team. I have a X Pro1 for 6 months, XE1 sharing the same sensor and processor as the X Pro1, although the AF still a bit slow after upgrading, but I find this AF system is differ from other kind of camera, I like it, I do not find, it is that slow as long as you know the trick of it. It can tell you right away if the focus is not OK, instead of other camera does, doing the hunting. The image quality is excellent, I has a Nikon D600, I could not tell which is better, sometimes, I find the X Pro1 is better. ISO Noise is unbeatable too.

  18. It’s not the camera my friend! You got the stuff!! Great images. Wonderful eye. I’m sure you could shoot this good with an olympus xz1 or something. But nice review on an under-reported camera.

  19. Thanks for sharing your story. I, too, love the cat shot. The last shot of the church and sky, I would say that was shot with a red filter, or post processed with the red channel. Or is that just au naturel? For some reason, we English speakers use the feminine gender for ships, cars, planes, and other objects of desire. But you have a “bad boy” camera. Interesting.

  20. I agree. Purchased an XE1 after much research and really love how flexible it is. I purchased it because of the main controls on the outside since I shoot manual most of the time. Very nice job on your review Patrick.

  21. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and images Patrick … beautiful, and my X-E1 arrives today! Did you purchase your camera with the 18-55 mm lens, or what did you shoot these with? You have a great eye for creating compelling images, nicely done.

    One question though, the bottom landscape shot looks great – but the top of the tree lines has some odd pixelation going on when you view at full size. Is that something the Bayer sensor picked up or as a result of post processing you did?

    • Thanks Glen, I really appreciate your comment. I bought the X-e1 with the 35mm which is the best lens I ever used (but I have not used a lot, so…). In fact, the pic with the church has been shot with the X10 and processed with Nix silver effect.

  22. Great pics & strange how Steve hasn’t reviews the camera yet..

    I’m really interested in this camera & the more cameras with aperture rings on the lense the better..

  23. Great that you are enjoying your XE-1. But is it a “he” or a “she” or something else?

    • Dear Mr. Steinberg,

      As you may have noticed, some of us here are not native English speakers. We are doing our best to convey our thoughts and emotions in your language … and we are happy when our mistakes make you smile!

      Patrick : bravo pour ces images et cet enthousiasme. Je vois egalement que le Pain Quotidien est a la fois un lieu de rencontres (!) et d’inspiration artistique.
      (Monsieur Steinberg: I have made 2 mistakes in the last sentence in French. Can you spot them?)


          • Toi y en a oublié les accangs, Ernesto. J’écris en language de pros, pour ceux qui comprennent pas, hahaha.

            Marrant de voir quelqu’un écrire en français et avoir un nom Allemand. Tu ne shooterais pas par hazard avec une Leica, Ernesto.

            Partick écrit bien en anglais, même s’il traduit du français en respectant les masculins de ce language qui deviennent féminins en anglais. J’ai toujours aimé entendre des gens de toutes nationalités parler des langues étrangères en les chantant ou les hachant avec la musique de leur propre langue, un peu du style Sergeant Schulz.
            Je trouve cela amusant et ça a du charme après tout.

            Bonne photos, Patrick, amuse toi avec ce nouveau boitier Fuji. Après tout, tu as trouvé ton bonheur avec un budget qui te convient. On a besoin des fois de peu pour être heureux, même si d’autres n’arriveront jamais à comprendre cela..

    • Yes I fell in love with a “he”, please do not tell my wife… In French a camera is a he (un appareil photo).

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