Fujifilm XQ1

Suave looks, genuinely compact and competitively priced

This is the smallest member of Fujifilm’s retro-styled “X” series to date and one of the lightest on test. It’s near identical in size to Canon’s S120 (opposite) and boasts the same 12-megapixel resolution, albeit this time via a 2/3-inch CMOS sensor – double the size of standard point and shoots. Likewise the lens has a f/1.8 aperture – the smaller the number the more light the lens allows in. So, very familiar spec, but a price tag that’s £100 cheaper, which is worthy of closer inspection.

The XQ1’s focal range stretches from a very useful wide-angle 25mm to 100mm in 35mm terms, and image stabilisation helps prevent hand wobble resulting in image blur; essential on compact cameras without a handgrip. It also has a 0.06-second autofocus, up to 12fps continuous shooting, light sensitivity settings that stretch from ISO 100-12800 and a Wi-Fi button for sharing pictures with a smartphone or tablet via the free Camera Application app.

Stills are much sharper than your average point-and-shoot cam; make use of the simulation modes – Astia, Provia, Velvia, Toy Camera and the like – and you can add real old-school flair to shoots, too. Full-HD video comes with its own button and full use of the optical zoom, although the noise of the lens mechanics is slightly more noticeable when filming than on other cameras on test.

Fujifilm XQ1

When it comes to ease of use there’s no issue here. Again, you get the added usefulness of a lens ring, for easy manual zooming and toggling between oft-used settings – white balance, ISO, continuous shooting, etc. Adding this intuitive control almost compensates for the fact that the XQ1’s backplate buttons are fiddly and tiny.

Despite a few minor irks, the XQ1 offers classy results at an attractive price. It’s an added bonus that it also happens to be the best-looking camera on test.

Love: DSLR-like shooting from a top-quality fixed lens. Retro but slimline look. Fujifilm’s image effects

HATE: Control buttons are tiny. Noisier lens mechanics are obvious when shooting video. No handgrip

VERDICT: Stylish and easy to use, the XQ1 delivers great results and even better value for money

Dimensions

Height 58.5mm

Width 100mm

Depth 33.3mm

Weight 206g

Feature:

1. screen

Again, no space here for an optical viewfinder. The three-inch screen isn’t touch-sensitive either

2. Controls

Almost identical to the Canon S120, but with all the buttons made uncomfortably small

3. Lens

A 4x optical zoom lens boasts a 35mm equivalent focal range of 25-100mm

4. Build

The roughened plastic front looks good and aids grip

 

Specification

Sensor 12-megapixel 2/3-inch, X-Trans CMOS II

display 3-inch LCD

Lens 25-100mm

zoom 4x optical

ISO range 100-12800

Video 1080p at 60fps

Stills capture JPEG, Raw, Raw + JPEG

connectivity Wi-Fi

Battery life Up to 240 shots