By Will Harrington
Although the Fujifilm X100V remains the newest entry in the X100 series, it is in its third year, having been initially released in February 2020.
With the previous entry, the X100F, having been released in 2017, there’s more than enough reason to speculate that a successor to the X100V may be around the corner. On the other hand, with the unbelievable TikTok-fueled hype that pushed after-market prices to more than twice retail and forced Fujifilm to stop taking orders due to demand, the company might not see a reason to move on from the hottest camera on the market so fast.
The question becomes: is the X100V worth getting in 2023?
In short: yeah, probably.
As someone who was lucky enough to get their hands on one a few weeks ago, I can confidently say this is the most exciting camera I’ve ever had. There’s no doubt that if you’re reading this, you already know about all of the attractive features of this camera.
It’s light, compact (fits nicely in my Lululemon Everywhere Belt Bag), and super stylish. The film simulations are a blast to play around with and result in beautiful images. The 23mm Fujinon lens is the perfect walk-around focal length.
Just yesterday I was waiting for my Uber after dropping off some equipment at a rental house. The business park I found myself in was eerily quiet after hours. Then suddenly, a man on what appeared to be a jerry-rigged motorbike flies around the corner of the building, nearly wiping out. He recovered and started building speed down the empty parking lot, smiling cheerfully in the evening sun.
I quickly pulled out my X100V and snapped some pics. I got his Instagram name and sent him the JPEGs straight off the camera, which he described as “bangersssss”.
Interactions like this are the charm of the X100V. As someone who does love their Sony a7 IV, but finds themself slightly dreading lugging around a heavy camera with a heavy lens, then having to spend hours in Lightroom editing 50MB RAW files, the X100V is very refreshing. If I’m doing professional work, I’ll of course reach for my a7 IV. If I’m going to the beach with friends; X100V all the way.
The X100V isn’t without its faults. It’s weird that you have to buy an adapter to put filters on the lens, especially when they must know almost everyone who buys this camera is going to slap a black mist filter on it to get closer to that film look. The buttons are a bit confusing for someone coming from the Sony ecosystem (why does “MENU” = “OK”?). The biggest crime, however, of the X100V is the Fujifilm mobile app—borderline unusable.
These issues are small enough that I do not regret my purchase. Even if Fujifilm announces the X100VI next week, I won’t feel stung. It’s not a camera I bought for maximum optical quality and state-of-the-art tech, anyway. It’s a camera I bought for fun, and for relearning the joy of photography.
If you’re interested enough in the X100V to be reading this, then you probably won’t be disappointed in picking one up this year.