After all the sharing of my user experience, I think a lot of people will still be throwing the question of “should I buy it?”. Well, it really depends on your requirement.
For Pro shooter who is looking for a second camera, you need to decide whether you want a Pro level compact (like the X100 series & Ricoh GR) with emphasis on image quality, or an all rounder that can get almost everything done. If you just want to get lazy once in awhile, shoot for fun, want something convenient and not too shabby in terms of image quality, then perhaps the X30 is a right camera for you.
For those who are looking for “the one and only” camera, you will need to decide whether do you really need a compact camera in the first place. The X30 is not a compact camera, as I have mentioned earlier. It’s a “compact” camera when compared to those like X-E2 and X-T1, but when compared to true compact like X-Q1 or X-F1, the X30 is just… huge. If “pocketability” is what you need, do consider to take a look at X-Q1 which has a faster lens, same sensor and similar features.
For those who would buy an interchangeable lens camera with kit lens and stick with only the kit lens for the rest of your life… you should consider this kind of camera too. In many ways, “pro-compact” cameras like the X30, Canon G series and Sony RX100 series are not meant to be pocketable in the very first place. They are aimed at those who want the pro features, minus the hassle of lens changing, plus a slightly smaller package for easier traveling. For beginners in photography who still yet to know what camera/system/lens suits you, this is a good place for you to start with. There’re thousand of reasons for this type of camera to exist, so those who say they can’t figure out why Fujifilm creates a camera that’s not pro nor compact, they just didn’t get it.
So, if you have decided to get a “pro-compact”, what are the choices available in the market? Well, Fujifilm offers the X30, Sony offers the RX100 series, Canon offers the PowerShot G series and their new G7X seems promising, and Panasonic has just introduced the LX100 and joins the crowd. There’re plenty of choices, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, which will be the best of them all? Well, go and try out all of them and pick the one that suits you best. That will be the best camera for you.
The X30, in many ways is a much complete offering compared to X20. Should existing user upgrade? It’s a tuff call, if those features really matter to you, by all means go and buy one now. But I must say the X30 has evolved to become something more… modern, and it has lose some retro-feeling the X20 carries. This is not something bad, but good for one to take note about.
There are some minor quirks in terms of operation, as what I have shared. It would have been better if the lens can go to 24mm at say f1.8. The missing ND filter is rather unacceptable. Fujifilm still needs to work hard to improve the video output quality. Hopefully all these will be addressed in X40, as the competition for “pro-compact” is getting fierce. For most, the improvements in the X30 (better battery life, wifi, EVF and etc.) will probably outweighs some of the quirks, and one will still be able to enjoy the camera fairly well and starts to fall in love with what it offers. For me, though initially impression with the camera was not that great, but after shooting with it for a few weekends, I started to get to know it more and able to deal with it better. All in all, I would certainly recommend those who are considering this type of camera to take a look at what Fujifilm has to offer with the X30. Till then, enjoy shooting and thanks for reading through my lengthy review 🙂
A User Review of Fujifilm X30 – Part 1: Introduction
A User Review of Fujifilm X30 – Part 2: On the Outside
A User Review of Fujifilm X30 – Part 3: On the Inside
A User Review of Fujifilm X30 – Part 4: Sample Shots
A User Review of Fujifilm X30 – Part 5: Final Words