The Fuji X100, the company's retro-styled rangefinder digital camera, proved to be a sell-out success for the company. The new X10 looks like it has been designed to capitalise on the earlier camera's success, particularly if the externals are anything to go by. From the outset, you are presented with a similar chassis, albeit much smaller than the X100, with a similar shooting configuration as found on high-end compacts from other manufacturers like Nikon, Canon, Panasonic and Olympus.
Key to the X10 is the bright f/2.0 lens which extends to 4x optical zoom. Unfortunately, this camera doesn't borrow the hybrid viewfinder from its older sibling; it just has a standard optical viewfinder as found on the Canon G12 and the Nikon P7000. The X10's sensor is an EXR-CMOS sensor developed by Fuji, taking a leaf out of its EXR technology book that selects the best shooting mode from SN (high sensitivity/low noise), DR (dynamic range) or HR (high resolution). Fuji is also claiming that it offers best-in-class full HD video recording, with the caveat that "class" is defined as cameras with a 2/3-inch sensor.
|Nikon P7000||Canon G12||Panasonic LX5||Fuji X10|
|10-megapixel CCD||10-megapixel CCD||10.1-megapixel CCD||12-megapixel EXR-CMOS|
|3-inch, 920,000-dot LCD||2.8-inch, 461,000-dot LCD||3-inch, 460,000-dot LCD||2.8-inch, 460,000-dot LCD|
|7.1x optical zoom||5x optical zoom||4x optical zoom||4x optical zoom|
|HD video (720p, 24fps)||HD video (720p, 24fps)||HD video (AVCHD Lite, 720p, 30fps)||HD video (1080p, 30fps)|
|Pop-up flash, hotshoe||Built-in flash, hotshoe||Pop-up flash, hotshoe||Pop-up flash|
As you can see from the specs, it stacks up rather well against its main competitors. Unfortunately, the LCD screen is only 2.8-inches — while not tiny, we still appreciate any extra real estate we can get. The zoom works by rotating a manual ring on the front element with focal length markings, rather than automatically with a traditional zoom rocker. We like this idea, and it definitely adds to the nostalgic shooting experience. No pricing or availability has been announced yet for Australia.