Fujifilm has announced the successor to last year's retro-styled X-E2S mirrorless camera, which was itself a minor upgrade to the X-E2. The X-E3 mirrorless rangefinder-style shooter is the smallest and lightest in the X series, and as well a bringing 4K video capabilities to the party, it also caters for remote operation using a smartphone over Bluetooth – an X series first. It's also quick to start, fast to focus and can track moving objects better than cameras that have come before.
At the heart of the X-E3 beats a 24.3 MP X-Trans CMOS III (23.5 x 15.6 mm) image sensor and X-Processor Pro engine combination. Fujifilm says the camera boasts a 0.4 second startup time, 5 frames per second live-view continuous shooting and a base ISO range of 200 to 12,800, which can be expanded down to 100 and up to 51,200.
The big draw for retro camera lovers though is probably its 4K/30 fps video recording prowess, though 1080p is also on offer at up to 60 fps. Video can be output to an external monitor over HDMI and there's a microphone input jack, too.
The new X series addition benefits from a 325-point AF system and a zippy autofocus speed of 0.06 seconds. It's also claimed to offer better AF-C subject tracking thanks to a new algorithm, able to keep up with subjects half the size and moving twice as fast as previous models.
In common with the X-E2S before it, there's cooked in Wi-Fi, but new to the X series is always-on Bluetooth LE for image transfer ease and remote operation. The X-E3 has a detailed 0.39 inch, 2.36 million dot OLED viewfinder, and a 3-inch, 1.04 million dot touchscreen display panel to the rear – though Fujifilm hasn't taken this update opportunity to add a vari-angle tilting mechanism.
The back of the camera lacks the button and clickwheel controls found on the outgoing model, so most menu navigation takes place on the touch display, but users can create custom camera functions for swipe activation on the panel and there's a focus lever that does allow for joystick-like autofocus control.
Aluminum dials to the top are present and correct though, for camera settings adjustment (including shutter speed and exposure compensation), but there's no pop-up flash. Instead, Fujifilm has included an external flash in the box.
The X-E3 is reported to be the most compact and lightweight model with a viewfinder in the X series range, at 4.78 x 2.91 x 1.68 in (121.3 x 73.9 x 42.7 mm) and 11.8 oz (337 g), including Li-ion battery and memory card. Battery life is around 350 stills before needing a recharge.
This attractive mirrorless camera is due for release this month in three kit options – body-only for US$899.95, body and XF 18-55 mm lens for $1,299.95 or body and XF 23 mm F2 R WR lens for $1,149.95. The promo video below introduces the X-E3 feature set.
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