Someone at Fujifilm Thinks Like Me


I've been harsh about Nikon's decisions regarding the dials on the Df camera. In virtually every case I suggested that there was a better design that Nikon avoided. 

Fujifilm's upcoming X-T1 (to be announced January 28th) seems to incorporate virtually all of my comments:

  • No mode dial — Fujifilm has correctly moved the film answer for exposure modes forward into digital: A settings on the aperture ring and shutter speed dial give you all four exposure modes without needing a mode dial and then making the shutter speed or aperture ring lie to you. 
  • ISO dial — Look, an Auto ISO position. 
  • Exposure Compensation dial — Yep, in the correct position for the right hand, leaving your left hand under the lens supporting the camera and/or focusing/zooming while looking through viewfinder.
  • Front Command dial — horizontal, just below the shutter release; opposes rear dial correctly for one-hand operation without moving hand position.
  • On/Off switch — small gripped tab sticking forward from the ring around shutter release.
  • Shooting Method switch — under the ISO dial on the left side (as you face the camera), with the markings facing you for visibility. (Metering is similarly set via a dial under the shutter speed dial.)

That's not to say that Fujifilm got everything correct. The LCD has to be on to see what the status of the card is (no top LCD). They've backed away from the mechanical screw-in release on the shutter release button, which seems strange for a retro design. I suspect the Direction pad on the rear is a bit too low in position, too, though I really need to handle the camera in operation to see how it integrates into shooting. The Fn and red Record video button positions look like they should be swapped, too. 

Still, these design decisions all seem more photographer-friendly than Nikon's. That's been my point all along with the Df. The Df isn't a bad camera, it just could have been a far better one with attention to detail. Detail that Nikon had four years to refine and test. 

Fujifilm's come a long, long way in design since their Frankencamera DSLRs (Nikon film and digital bodies as donors for the now discontinued Fujifilm DSLRs, such as the S1, S2 Pro, S3 Pro, and S5 Pro). I look forward to shooting with the X-T1 when it comes out. 

If you're interested in how Fujifilm's X series mirrorless cameras and lenses fare, see the camera reviews and lens reviews on, which I'll be adding more to, shortly.

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