I don’t know what it is about me, but I have always straddled this line between having the latest and greatest gadget and longing for a time when men wore hats and everyday objects were made with handmade care. It’s an internal conflict that I live with on a daily basis where I carry an iPad to do much of my work, yet secretly wish that I could use my handmade fountain pen to write on it. Truth be told I think it’s some sort of technological multiple personality disorder.
Anyway, enough about my issues.
I have always been a fan of rangefinder cameras, Leica being the top of the heap in that category. However, the reality is that the flexibility and time saving components of digital photography has fed the instant gratification beast inside all of us, but folks like me still long for the ability to quickly compose an image and the solid feel of the older rangefinder cameras. Of course if you have $7000 plus another $2000-$3000 for a lens burning a hole in your pocket you can get the digital Leica M9 and make me very jealous. For the rest of us that have to pay bills and work for a living, it’s not really an option.
Along comes the Fujifilm Finepix X100 to sweep me off my feet and put me in a state of modern convenience/classic rangefinder bliss.
Now realize I have not held one of these in my hands, and that could change a lot of things, but there are a chosen few that have and their reviews have piqued my interest. The X100 is a classic styled rangefinder camera that combines classic feel touches, such as analog dials, with the modern convenience of digital photography. Fujifilm has built a website dedicated to this camera that answered most of my questions. The estimated street price puts it at around $1000 which is not cheap, but a hell of a lot cheaper than the Leica. I think this camera has a lot of great features and potential and if the excitement that it garnered at Photokina last year is any indication I think this could be home run for Fujifilm. I for one look forward to trying one out.
If my ramblings were not enough to get you excited about this camera you should watch their promo video below that contains enough colorful catchphrases, such as “from simplicity to the extreme” and “in a class all its own”, to get Droopy excited. I think the only thing that could make it better would be the movie trailer voice guy doing the voiceover and starting the video with “In a world…”