One thing that has been very nice to see from Fujifilm is that the company seems responsive to user’s wants and observations. The Fuji X-E1 shipped with essentially the same button layout as the X-Pro 1. This places the AF point selection button on the extreme lower left of the camera. To me, this is incredibly awkward both when holding the camera to my eye and when holding the camera out and using the rear screen to compose. My approach has been to keep the camera in manual focus mode, and use the AF-Lock button to activate the central AF point as needed, and then recompose. Up to this point, this has been an acceptable, although not terrific solution.
By comparison, the newer X-100S, which cannot accept interchangeable lenses (but does have a leaf shutter!) has a much improved location for the AF point selection button: the “up” arrow button of the four-way controller. On the X-E1, this button controls macro focusing on some lenses. But the “down” arrow wasn’t doing anything, other than scrolling in menus, of course.
So, with the release of firmware 1.06, available at http://www.fujifilm.com/support/digital_cameras/software/firmware/x/xe1/index.html, Fuji gave the “down” button something to do: it can call up the AF point selection. This makes the ergonomics of actually selecting a focusing point something that is comfortable to do! Thank you, Fuji, for transforming an annoyance into something that is simply a “quirk.” Now, if the dedicated AF button on the lower-left was also made user-programmable in the process, I would have been able to eat cake and have it, too. Maybe on the next go-round!
Oh, and if interested, the screen protector I am using on my X-E1 is the Giottos SP-8300, the strap is from UpStrap, and the plate on the bottom of the camera is from Really Right Stuff. More about that after next week, where I’ll be in Asheville and running up and down the Blue Ridge Highway once again…with the X-E1 in addition to my standard Canon kit!