Saturday, April 30, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Carry at All Times

I've said on previous posts that I always want to have a camera on me.  In a dire emergency I'll consider my iPhone a camera - but in 99.9% of the occasions I go out I have a "real" camera with me.  This morning is another good example of this mantra which led to this shot.  I was walking up the avenue and saw this monk (?) standing on the corner.  I flipped on the X100 while holding a mocha with the other.  Kept my stride and when I got near him I shot, said thanks, and kept walking.  Not going to win a Pulitzer - but it made my morning to get this grab shot.  Are we photographers all "odd" like that?

Friday, April 29, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Camera Has Landed

Thank you for all your emails and comments.  I am happy to see that the X100's did arrive at the dealers today as promised.  This is only the first wave and there will be another shipment next week to help out a bit with demand - but there are many weeks or months to go to catch up to what's needed in the market.
Meetings today in HQ went very well and I was able to share the great suggestions from many folks participating in this and other forums.
I cannot give any details about the quantity shipped and allocations made - but there is progress so I will focus on the positive in that hundreds of people now have X100's to enjoy.
There is no data on the next firmware update, and Japan is now in their golden week so nothing will happen for a couple weeks at the least.
As always - any questions let me know.

Weekly Email 4-29-11 Mistake or Art ?

This week I was shooting the NYC skyline from the 39th floor of a building on 48th Street and First Ave.  I didn't have a tripod so as the light faded I decided to try a simulated high dynamic range image by taking several shot in small steps of exposure changes with the plan to process them in Photoshop to blend eight frames to become one.  Of course resting on a railing is not ideal for this since you have to hold still so the frames line up perfectly.
This is the image the software provided which is of course a bit off reality, but sometimes these "errors" are fun.

The exposures ranged from ISO 400 @ F/4.0 at 0.5 sec to ISO 250 F/4 @ 1/4 sec with the FinePix X100



Thursday, April 28, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 - Houston, We Have Liftoff!

As promised here is the update.  The X100 has begun shipping in the USA.  Several dealers should see the cameras and accessories tomorrow April 29th.   Demand is of course greater than supply.  The shipments will continue and we will catch up.

Next step - I get gruff for there not being enough.

I'm ready.  ;-)

** Update Friday 4-29-11 - I'm heading up to HQ today to meet and discuss all things X100.  I expect today to be an exciting day since the cameras will begin arriving at the dealers.  
If you'd like to ask specific questions today please email me rather than posting anonymous comments - they are harder to reply to since I'll have better access to email.  I don't mind the (anonymous) comments - I'm just offering a faster method of contact.  Also I do not have info to release on specific quantities of units to specific dealers - that cannot be shared by me.  Thanks for understanding.
bremler@fujifilm.com

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Delays, What's the Fuss?

I know many people are excited about the arrival of the X100 to the USA.  It has been a roller coaster of rumors and discussion and it looks like we will ship the cameras out today.  This is not 100% confirmed and I will update this later in the day when the trucks actually leave the warehouse.  I know folks have made comments about transparency and more communication - I am trying to do what I can as a small part of that for the few people who read this blog.  I don't feel a company must be transparent about all details of their operations.  Some details don't add anything constructive to the situation.  The time line was never set in stone and yes other parts of the world shipped limited amounts of cameras.  Our goal is to give our USA customers the best experience with their X100 in the world.  I am confident we will do that.

And today in my inbox I saw a great example of product delays.  10 months or so later Apple has an announcement - so we are way ahead of their schedule ;-).

**Update 12:50p - - Thank you for the responses to the X100 delay scenario.  I agree we could do a  better job communicating, but I am personally handcuffed since I am in sales not marketing.  My NYC dealers do know the scenario with the camera arrival and those reading this are being kept as up to date as possible.  More on deliveries later in the day.
This blog remember is a personal endeavor with company info as appropriate.  I have urged FNAC HQ to release more data and update the Facebook page more often (Fujifilm FinePix X100). 
The comments (section below) on the beautiful X100 custom site are great and appropriate ( http://www.finepix-x100.com/ ) - but alas that is not a USA controlled site and for those with large company experience - that means we don't necessarily have access to update country by country the shipping details.  So yes the ball is dropped - but luckily it's rubber and it bounces, and will be back up soon.
As for the comment about earthquake update - that is located in previous posts.  Here is some info relating to slower shipments to the USA from Japan:

4-21-11 - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is monitoring developments in Japan carefully, specifically concentrating on the potential for radiation contamination of goods shipped to the U.S.  For shipments arriving via air, all airports have sensitive Radiation Isotope Identification Devices (RIIDs) to determine both the presence and type of radiation encountered.  At seaports, and at international mail and express consignment facilities, CBP continues to use sensitive, large-scale Radiation Portal Monitors (RPM) and scans all maritime cargo and express consignment and mail arriving from Japan.  CBP maintains similar procedures for identifying and resolving radiation alarms in these operations and will deny entry to contaminated cargo and mail.

Shoot 'Em and Print 'Em ! 40% off Prints Until May 4th

I am a BIG fan of making prints from my digital files.  I think too many people have fallen out of the habit of sharing photos in print format.  I can see the joy a print brings someone when you give it to them.  I can assure you it's a better feeling than sending an email.  And you know in the short term they may post it to the fridge or put it in a frame.  It lives on.  My confession is that I print about 50-300 prints a month and have access to a Frontier 570 lab.
So with that in mind, a shameless plug and offer.  I'm passing on my Friends and Family 40% discount from SeeHere.com.  If this proves to be something folks want I'll share more offers.  I figure I get these for all sorts of clothing stores - so here's my chance to give back.  If you don't like the deal - that's ok.  Grab the code from the link or the photo below ( prints-36 ) and use it at checkout.  Expires May 4th.
http://p.p0.com/YesConnect/HtmlMessagePreview?a=OikZOesPnV4-tYGmu2n4mZ
Some price examples with this discount are:
8x10 - $2.09
12x18 - $5.99
16x20 - $9.59
20x30 - $11.99


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 NYC Panorama

Last night I was lucky enough to end up on the roof of a building on 49th Street.  So from 39 stories up here is the view looking south.

**Update**

Of course there is no limited edition camera set.  Someone made a nice box and put the camera, case and flash in it themselves.  That is smart and perhaps a good business judging by the interest in Denmark and beyond - but it's not a new camera or anything from Fujifilm.  I still expect the cameras to reach USA dealers on Friday the 29th - but will confirm that as soon as I know.
**Update** I wrote this original post in April.  Things seem to have changed since then and the limited edition box may exist - though I cannot confirm it as seen on the web from Japan -  it is not for sale in the USA.
 

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Adobe RAW Converter Available!

This is good news for X100 owners - we now have CS5 use for the raw files.  This is the link for the update in Mac version:
http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/detail.jsp?ftpID=5027
This is the link in PC version:
http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/detail.jsp?ftpID=5028

Camera Raw 6.4 update

This new version of the Camera Raw plug-in replaces the original Camera Raw plug-in that was installed with Adobe® Creative Suite® 5 or Adobe® Photoshop® CS5 software.

Support for the following cameras has been added in this update. Visit the Camera Raw page for a complete list of supported cameras.
  • Canon EOS 600D (Rebel T3i / Kiss X5 Digital)
  • Canon EOS 1100D (Rebel T3 / Kiss X50 Digital)
  • Fuji FinePix S200 EXR
  • Fuji FinePix F550 EXR
  • Fuji FinePix HS20 EXR
  • Fuji FinePix X100
  • Hasselblad H4D-40
  • Kodak Z990
  • Nikon D5100
  • Olympus E-PL1s
  • Olympus E-PL2
  • Olympus XZ-1
  • Samsung NX11

Friday, April 22, 2011

Weekly Email 4-22-11 Spring Colors

This was a jam packed week with so many photographic moments to share.  I'm going with the colors of Spring and will post others to the blog.

How to photograph a cherry blossom tree is always a tough call between the bright colors on a blue sky or the background of a dramatic silhouette.

Here I am sharing two images which show both scenes and you can decide which is your preferred look. 








Close Up - FinePix X100 - F/13 1/250th @ ISO 250
Fisheye -  5D Mark II - F/18 - 1/125th @ ISO 200

Concert Recording with Playbook Tablet

I'm used to being at concerts where I see all the cell phones up recording.  This week I saw someone who got the Blackberry Playbook the first day of release making a recording of Train in the crowd.  Do you think it sticks out a bit?





FinePix X100 ISO 800 - 1/250th @ F/2.8

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Firmware 1.01 and The NY Times

Today the minor firmware upgrade is live.  You can find that here:
http://www.fujifilm.com/support/digital_cameras/software/firmware/x/finepix_x100/fupd.html

I appreciate all the comments and suggestions for improvements to the camera.  They have been shared with HQ and we will see some in further firmware upgrades.

Also today David Pogue published his review of the X100.  He and I talked briefly while he was shooting and I think he has a good review.  Like all new cameras it takes time to master the details but the performance is there and the camera will only get better!
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/21/technology/personaltech/21pogue.html?ref=technology

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Concert Images

Certainly I don't expect the X100 to be a concert camera with all the great equipment out there, but last night I was lucky enough to end up about 10ft from Pat Monahan of Train so I had to snap some shots with the camera.

The images are sharp and shot at:
#259 - ISO 1000 f/4 @ 1/125
#299 - ISO 800 f/2.8 @ 1/250



Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Sunset and Firmware 1.01

The X100 is proving to be a great camera I never want to leave home without.  It's so light, yet capable and is a conversation piece everywhere I go.  As the camera matures in the market, firmware upgrades will be released to improve some of the functions folks are commenting on.  The first release, which will be a minor one, is set for Thursday the 21st.  As we ramp up with the camera and it ships to the USA dealers next week I am confident we will see more upgrades to improve the excellent photographic experience.
This image from last night was shot at F/11 @ 3.2 seconds ISO 200 in Velvia film simulation.  The odd line across the water in foreground is a duck.

Follow Up: Thank you for all the constructive comments.  I can assure you they will be shared with the right folks as Fujifilm NAC (USA).  This firmware change will be very minor (.01).  It is just a tweak as things are evaluated and changes are made based on worldwide feedback.  I am sure we all know some things are possible and others more challenging.  Thank you for the detailed list and other comments to pass on.  Now is the time for a bit of patience as all things cannot be immediately addressed.  I'm happy to see the effort made in respect to this firmware and I am sure many more will follow.
The cameras should be at USA dealers to ship to their customers on or about the 27th.

Follow up #2 - Just a quick note to those who have the camera, and those who get the camera then update the firmware tomorrow, you must follow the directions and heed this warning:
If the camera is turned off during upgrade period, the camera will be completely broken and cannot be recovered.  Make sure you charge the battery beforehand.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Panoramic Times Square


There is always something captivating about Times Square at night.  This is a 120 degree sweep, handheld, with the X100 at ISO 800.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 High-Speed Flash Sync

One of the great features of a lens shutter camera like the X100 is the high-speed flash sync capability.  In both these shots I was about to use a shutter speed not normally associated with a built-in flash.  I shot the Empire State Building shot at 1/2000th at F/4.  The main issue was the extreme shade we were in while wanting to show visiting family the Empire State Building behind them.  Any less exposure and the sky would have been washed out.  Then the cherry blossoms I shot at 1/1000th at F/13 to keep the blue sky with the backlit flowers.  A great way to get the effect you like.


Friday, April 15, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 ISO 1250

I have always enjoyed the Arch at Washington Square Park.   Here are a couple low light views I made this week.



Weekly Email 4-15-11 Making a Skyline Work

This week I was lucky to pass by a neat park on the East River.  Gantry Plaza State Park is a unique gem in the park system.  Situated across from the UN it has spectacular views of NYC.  There are two chairs set up with something like an IMAX city view.  One day I have to get there at sunset to see the view from them.

In this shot I felt I needed to tweak the image since it was a rainy day and I popped out for a shot and the weather wasn't an ideal scenic look.  So with the click of a button the transformation took place and now the drama of the image works better for me.

FinePix X100 ISO 320 F/5.0 1/340th with +2/3 exp comp








Sunday, April 10, 2011

Washington Square Hawk View

Today I learned about the pair of red tailed hawks living on a building at NYU.  There is a neat live camera streaming site set up to watch their chicks hatch in about two weeks from now.  I am sure the action will heat up in the nest once they are born.  Here is a shot I did today while trying to capture the pair.  Unfortunately no real interaction at the nest since mom is kind of sitting all day and hidden from view from the ground.  The 28mm shot shows the hawk in the top left on the church cross at 700mm.
http://www.livestream.com/nytnestcam


Friday, April 08, 2011

Fujifilm FinePix X100 SD Card Speeds

There is going to be a lot of talk about the "speed" of the X100 while writing to the SD card.  The camera allows you to keep shooting while it writes to the card - but the menu functions and any adjustments are frozen until the image is done writing to the SD card.  So with that in mind photographers may want to take a look at what speed their SD card is rated at.  I just did a quick test with my camera while recording RAW+JPEG Fine and the speed was at least 25% faster with the Class 6 over Class 2.  I found this chart online so I assume it's close to accurate and of course a decent overview.  I had to break out my loupe to see the class markings on some of the cards!
  • Class 0 cards do not specify performance, which includes all legacy cards prior to class specifications.
  • Class 2, 2 MB/s, slowest for SDHC cards.
  • Class 4, 4 MB/s.
  • Class 6, 6 MB/s.
  • Class 10, 10 MB/s.

Image Adjustment - Tweak as You Like

One of the great things we have at our disposal are a myriad of digital filters.  In this shot I used the Nik Color Efex Pro to tweak the image.  Of course one was shot with flash and one without - but the glow and saturation are mostly from the filter plug in.  Have a favorite?
Shot with the FinePix X100 1/220 @ F/3.6 ISO320.



Weekly Email 4-1-11 Hudson River Panorama X100

There is always activity along the river.  This week I wanted to incorporate a neat feature in my camera and utilize the people to make an interesting shot.
Most of us who have bought a new digital in the past year or so have a panorama sweep feature included in the menu features.  I set mine for a 120 degree sweep and here is what I was able to capture.  A seamless scene from many frames automatically stitched together.  An interesting item is that there is only one person in the photo but as she ran she popped up twice which I like in this instance.

FinePix X100 Pano - exposure approx 1/125 @ F/7.1 ISO400 & -1 exp comp




Friday, April 01, 2011

Weekly Email 4-1-11 Rainy Street NYC

The winter temps are back this week and with that the streets are a bit quieter at night.  But last night as I left a store I looked up and saw this scene which plays into my mantra of always carry a camera with you. 
The colors were great and there was just enough activity to give it a human feel.

Shot with the Fujifilm FinePix X100 at ISO 800 F/2.0 @ 1/28

NYC Don't Make That Turn

There's something about this sign in midtown that makes me smile.  I wonder how many of these are made for use in the USA?