Fuji X100T - Reconnecting the past

Click here for an update of what's in my bag.

I've used the X100 series of fixed lens 35mm cameras from the original version. With it I've taken some of my most memorable photos. I always find the camera to be an interesting medium itself, as in different cameras allows me to approach different subjects differently. The DSLR forces me to be vanilla and professional, the Ricoh GR allows me to open up and be wild, while the Fuji X100T series of cameras requires me to really slow down.

I've sold the X100 in expectation for the X100S, and sold the X100S after a year of owning it.  I felt that I was growing too much into it and there wasn't room for it in my camera bag anymore.  Over time I begun to miss it, especially when I had my hands on first time in Japan earlier this year.  I always knew I was going to get it in the back of my mind, so eventually I got it, during the recent Fuji rebate.  It brought me back to a simpler time when I can stay calm and take photos.

I've made a series with only images from the X100S from one of my previous trips to China, which can be viewed here.

The camera:

Fujifilm X100T - The latest and greatest from Fuji. It features a 35mm equivalent lens, full manual controls, and a retro look and personality that really slows you down.

The accessories:

  • Killspencer Camera Strap - The Killspencer Camera Strap is set up in a way where I can drop the camera really quickly by letting the strap slide in my hand. The strap can also be tightened in a knot to turn it into a wrist strap. When not knotted, it allows me to sling the camera across my chest for safe keeping.
  • Lenshood and filter: Pentax DA40 Dome hood, 30.5mm UV filter, JJC LH-JX100II filter adapter - You can probably see that my lens cap has been abused from my former years of use on the previous versions of the X100 cameras. The set of hood and filters is the best I can find to combine hood and filter while keeping the lens as small as possible. The filter is recessed because it's mounted on the inside so there isn't much chance of accidentally touching it while grabbing the camera. This way I don't even need to use the original lens cap. Edit: This $7 alternative hood apparently does the exact same thing and is a Chinese clone of the DA40 hood.
  • 3D Printed focus ring - The 3D printed focus ring is a Godsend for manual focus. I've always wanted the Leica styled focus tabs and this gives me that. I can focus using only one index finger, keeping the camera stable in low light conditions.
  • Lensmate LM X100T Thumb grip - Speaking of improving handling, the thumb grip is also a must have. Without it, I'd have to grip the camera using my right hand. However with it, I can put most of the weight on my thumb, allowing single handed access.  These is a reason why I choose to opt for the more expensive thumb grips versus the cheaper Chinese alternatives.  Those specifically has another anchor point lined with rubber that touches the body of the camera.  By doing so, the pressure is not only on the hot shoe alone.  I've read about horror stories of the cheaper grips ruining the hot shoe of the camera.  The X100, X100S and the X100T versions all fit a bit differently.  They all will work with one another but make sure you get the right version for your camera.
  • Gariz Black Label case for X100T - The Gariz has a bar within the leather to allow the forefingers to grip the front of the camera. It also adds just a bit to the height of the camera to allow for a better grip. The bottom of the case has an opening for accessing memory card and battery as well as a sling ring for the sling straps.
  • TCL-X100 50mm Converter - Photographing people is a large part of my work, and the X100 by itself is quite wide to do any serious portrait work.  With the TCL-X100, I am able to shoot portraits and isolate the subject using the x100.
  • EF-X20 flash - Once I was on a week long shoot with Jurgen Teller, he used a combination of Contax G2 with the TLA-200 flash.  Clearly this flash is "inspired" by flashes like the TLA-200.  Aesthetically, I like to use this flash for isolation and as well as shooting in the face photos of my subjects.
  • Artisan Obscura Soft release - The Artisan Obscura soft release (or anything like it) allows me to hit the shutter with the inside joint of my index finger rather than my finger tip, I find doing that also gives me a much more stable handholding experience.  I find the small convex size works best for the X100T. These buttons works equally well if you don't mind it being mass produced in China.
  • Extra batteries - X100T eats batteries like cake, so get few of those. I usually carry 4 with me just in case.
  • JJC X100T Screen protector - Self explanatory, a must since the screen can be easily scratched.

The accessories all transferrable, so as I sold the previous cameras, I kept the accessories to use on the next version. While there are noticeable improvements from the pervious versions, the X100T largely improves on the usability so that the functions can be easily accessed without digging too much into the menus.

They key different in shooting with the X100T for me is the WYSIWYG effect modes in the EVF.  It's a window to a different world with live changes to the image.  I slow down as I shoot with it and try to compose to a certain theme of quietness and tranquility.  For chaos, I go to my Ricoh GR which I will cover in another article.

Categories: equipment

artisan obscura ef-x20 fuji x100t gariz black label killspencer camera strap lm-x100t pentax da-40 soft release tcl-x100 x100t