The X20 has joined the FUJIFILM’s premium compact X series. Although there is no major change in the appearance, it is now equipped with the 2/3-inch lowpass-less X-Trans CMOS II sensor (12M pixels), the EXR Processor II, and the Digital Trans panel in the viewfinder. I carried it with me all day in order to fully examine this camera, and I found it has a high resolving power despite its modest number of pixels. Operation has become much faster than the X10, so you have more chances to get the decisive moments. In short, this X20 delivers better pictures and provides easy operations, while maintaining the classical magnesium die-cast body. Now, how better are the images?

( Photography : Z II / Text : KIMURAX )

Enhanced sharpness achieved by the new sensor further optimized for the lens

A lowpass-less filter delivers high resolving power, while it’s prone to moire. In order to minimize it, The X-Trans CMOS II sensor has a special architecture of color filter. The effect is obvious – it exactly traces the edge lines of subjects. Thanks to the bright 28-112mm / F2-2.8 zoom lens (in 35mm equiv.), the pictures look very natural and realistic. It’s rich in tonality and color, while the colors don’t become too heavy. I’m convinced that this is a high-end compact camera.

A clear stream at dawn. I stopped down by just a half f-stop at the tele-end, it depicts the outlines of withered grass and cherry blossoms even at corners.

It’s nice to use bokeh with a compact camera. The bokeh on the leaves isn’t too noisy and it’s very soft, providing a nice emphasis. Just step forward and get dynamic shots.

Vivid color. I knew this camera is almost free from moire, so I maliciously chose a subject that can easily breed moire. Hum… there are some on the highlight area, but such moire can be generated by almost any digital camera. By the sharp drawing of the peak focus, the subject is clearly isolated from the background. I would say that the high resolution is more advantageous than disadvantageous.

It quickly responds to your desire to shoot.

The power is on when you twist the zoom ring just like the X10, but now it just takes 0.5 second (X10 needed 1.5 seconds). This is made possible by the EXR PROCESSOR II and I was able to shoot in a good rhythm thanks to its quick autofocusing and continuous shooting. The optical viewfinder is convenient because it shows shutter speed, aperture, ISO, and focusing areas. It’s nice to have a large back LCD, but why not keep the viewfinder when you believe it helps you assimilate yourself into the scene? Plus, it saves battery, too! While many cameras now employ touch-screen operation, it’s a relief to have a camera with analog dial control. In addition, the texture of sharpened dial and a nice feel of clicking are also the essentials of this type of camera.

Complicated subjects are drawn with sharpness while maintaining the solidity. The trees in the background are also resolved clearly.

These days, 12 megapixels is a modest number for effective pixels, but the tonality is rich as you can see in this sample. The hazy offshore is nicely captured and waves in the inlet are depicted with a delicacy.

The bright lens is reliable. It’s almost noise-free and the beam of light is shot beautifully.

Superiority makes your day.

In conclusion, it looks like they have made no compromise in performance and appearance, even though the camera is compact. I was amazed by the nice quick feel of operation which were just like the one of classic mechanical cameras. At the same time, it still has an elegant classic body and now the silver version is added. Now, is this a camera only for advanced photographers? Never. Beginners can shoot whatever they wish thanks to the combination of compact body and the convenient zoom lens. Yet, it delivers excellent results with sharpness and bokeh. You want to carry it with you anytime because you look more fashionable with this stylish camera! After all, this camera will satisfy both advanced and beginners and I’m sure you will feel attached to this tool.