Fujifilm announced their sucessor to the X20 early this morning at about 1:00AM EST. I’ve always had my eye on the X20 as a camera to take with me everywhere, and now that the X30 is out, I’ll probably go for it.

Here’s a quick rundown of the major changes and how some of the key features compare. At first glace it might not appear as though much has changed, but what has changed will make photography that much more enjoyable. And if you’re are an OVF holdout with cameras of this class, now is the time to pick up dwindling and discounted stick.

Key Features

X30 X20
Announced August 26, 2014 January 7, 2013
Released Fall 2014 March, 2013
$599 USD ($649 CDN) $499
Sensor 12MP ⅔ inch X-Trans CMOS II sensor 12MP ⅔ inch X-Trans CMOS II sensor
Processor EXR Processor II EXR Processor II
Viewfinder Large “Real Time” Electronic Viewfinder Smaller Optical Viewfinder
Viewfinder rotation Yes No
Autofocus Intelligent Hybrid AF in 0.06 seconds Intelligent Hybrid AF in 0.06 seconds
Direct access to AF points Yes! We need this on other cameras. No
Exposure Compensation ±3EV ±2EV
Interval Shooting Yes No
Start-up Time 0.5 seconds “Fast”
Shutter lag 0.1 seconds “No time lag”
Continuous Shooting 12 fps to a maximum of 11 frames 12 fps to a maximum of 11 frames
Lens FUJINON ƒ/2.0-2.8 lens 4x manual zoom lens (35mm equivalent of 28-112mm) FUJINON ƒ/2.0-2.8 lens 4x manual zoom lens (35mm equivalent of 28-112mm)
LCD Tilting 3.0" LCD (920k dots) Fixed 2.8" LCD (460K dots)
Control Ring Yes! Adjust your aperture where you’re supposed to. Nope
Enhanced Q Menu Customizable Q Menu (how long before this finds itself in firmware updates for all cameras?) Standard Q Menu
New Film Simulation Yes – Classic Chrome Not yet
Battery life 470 photos per charge 270 photos per charge
Flash Pop-up Super Intelligent Flash Pop-up Super Intelligent Flash
Close Focus Super Macro mode to 1cm Super Macro mode to 1cm
Focus Peaking Yes – with colours Yes – white only
Improved Video Yes – More framerates inc. 24 fps, Manual adjustments including ISO, shutter speed, aperture, and focus No – Fewer framerates, Full auto only
External Mic Input Yes No
WiFi Capabilities Yes No
Size Larger Smaller

Thoughts and Impressions

Fuji are still working at an impossibly fast pace. I sometimes wish they’d slow down because they’ve been tough to keep up with. It’s clear the Fuji truly do listen to the feedback they get from customers, and the X30 is further proof of that. The tricky thing for Fuji is now that they’ve annouced these adjustments to the user experience of the X30, X-E2 and X-T1 users are going to want to see them role out via firmware updates. I have no doubt that will happen, it just can’t happen quick enough.

This also helps maintain my excitment for the X100S sucessor. If they can do all this to the X30, the upgrade to a $1,300 camera should be very, very nice.

Fuji are touting the X30’s larger size as a feature. This is one area I wish they found a way to keep the camera more like the X20. The X30 is approaching X100 sizes.

Others have balked at the new higher price. This could be worth considering as for a little less money, you could have an X-M1, complete with it’s 16MP APS-C sensor, 3-inch 920k dot tilt screen, and the XC 16-50mm lens. Granted the lens is consumery and plastic and the EVF isn’t as nice, but that sensor can’t be ignored.


I’m not sure Fuji have added enough to warrant an upgrade for existing X20 owners as far as image quality is concerned, however the user experience will improve dramatically so if you’re picky about that sort of thing like I am, upgrading to the X30 could get your that much more enjoyment out of your photography. If video is something you do a lot of, that might make it worth the upgrade on its own.

For those who have been on the fence about a camera in this form factor, I’d say with little hesitation that this is the time to take the plunge. For anyone not looking to max out megapixels, this will be an outstanding camera that is nice and portable, transfers images to your phone for easy sharing (I miss this feature more and more on my X100S as time goes on), and it will capture photos that are worlds better than your smartphone is capable of.

I’m really looking forward to taking this camera for a spin.

Don’t miss my review of the Fuji X30 here.