FinePix X100 (23mm, f/8, 1/40 sec, ISO1600)

I recently got my Fujifilm X-E1 body and was immediately very impressed with the AF speed, as was everyone else who tried it.  It appeared snappier than the X-Pro1, but although I knew the X-Pro1 had improved lately with the new v2.0 firmware, I wanted to see if there was actually any difference between the two with the same lens attached.  Wilkinson Cameras in Kendal kindly lent me a 2nd 35mm lens for the weekend so I could try out both cameras side-by-side with the same lens.  Having the same lens was essential because the AF performance on these cameras depends greatly on the lens attached.  I chose the 35mm as I thought that it is probably the lens most people own and use as their primary lens.  It’s also the middle performer in terms of AF speed so we can get a good comparison out of it.

The video of the comparison is posted below.  I won’t ruin the result for you by telling you here – watch the video and see for yourself!  I think most people will be quite surprised by the conclusion.

This isn’t intended to serve as a show of the performance of the AF in either camera, it isn’t there to show how fast or slow they are, simply as a comparison between them both and to see how their AF systems behave side-by-side.

I realise the AF sounds a bit noisy here, it isn’t really – I had just recorded it with an iPhone which was sat directly onto the same table and the noise has transmitted directly through the table into the iPhone microphone!

Comments

comments

About The Author

Matthew Maddock is a commercial photographer based in the Lake District, UK. Specialising in the hospitality and outdoor sports industry. He is a Fujifilm X-Photographer and Getty Images contributor. His portfolio can be viewed at memaddock.co.uk

10 Responses

  1. Brian Rybolt

    I really doubt the validity of your test. To keep the cameras focusing on the same point without moving them is really useless. If you would have moved the cameras rapidly from one subject to another would have given us something to go on. Yes, it would have been more difficult to set up but it might have been believable. Your methodology was completely flawed.

    Best,

    Brian

    • Matt Maddock

      Personally I don’t rush rapidly from one subject to the other when shooting! The point isn’t to show the speed of the AF, just a comparison of the two side-by-side. Thanks.

  2. db

    … Or not. It is not scientific, but there are few camera movements with changing focusing points. & result is “synchronized”. Enough for me. I don’t care for probable few tens of millisecond differences – life is too short. What is funny here (and there) is quite loud sound of focusing. Yes, it is loud, but table seem to amplify it even a little bit more.

    • Matt Maddock

      No it’s not a scientific test. I don’t take pictures with science, I take them with my eye – like you I’m not concerned with how many milliseconds it takes to focus. It’s just there to show them side-by-side.

      The AF does sound loud doesn’t it – it isn’t really, I think you’re right, the sounds was just amplified through the table into the recording mic!

      • db

        Yes I know. My post was mainly response to Brian’s terms ‘validity’, ‘believable’ and ‘flawed’. I use this (and every) camera for photography, as many I want excellency. But there is a treshold where I could be satisfied with camera, with test or with massage. I was. And I am.

    • Matt Maddock

      Actually there is no mention from Fuji about the electronics being the same as the X-Pro1. Sensor yes, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t change the processor in the X-E1 or use a different AF algorithm.

      Anyway, the point was that anyone picking up the X-E1 is immediately impressed with the AF speed. As there were a lot of complaints about the AF speed of the X-Pro1 when it was released I simply wanted to show that both are in fact equally good now Fuji have updated the X-Pro1 firmware. Actually I didn’t know that for myself until I sat them down side-by-side myself, that’s exactly why I did it!

  3. Stephen Scharf

    Matt,
    Nice comparison between the X-E1 and the X-Pro1. Watching the video that you made, I also came to the same conclusion the autofocus speeds are virtually identical. I just bought the X Pro1 a weeks ago and been using it extensively. With the version 2.0 firmware I really don’t find that I have autofocus issues, and the autofocus is quite snappy in my experience. Just this evening, I was playing around with shooting the camera indoors and taking photographs of my tabby cat, Lucky, sitting in his favorite chair. I was really surprised, pleasantly so, that the autofocus locked on to the markings on his tabby fur very quickly and accurately, even in fairly low light in the living room. It’s clear that Fuji is really committed to the X series cameras and the firmware updates are really addressing any of the niggles that they had when we were first released. These improvements really made the X-Pro1 quite responsive; in street shooting situations, I find the camera to be fast and fluid in it’s operation and allows me to capture the images that I want to very quickly and effectively. And, of course, the image quality is to die for.