I went to San Francisco last week for a baseball game and took the X100 with me. I already knew the X100 had a small and compact design, but boy did I really appreciate it that day. We rode into Pleasanton and left our car there to take the BART into the city. From the BART station we took the Muni Metro to the baseball stadium and because it was game day it was insanely packed. We literally had to push our way into the Muni and watch our backs as the doors closed behind us. I had the X100 strapped around my shoulder the whole time and it didn’t get in the way at all. I didn’t have to worry about anyone bumping into my lens or it poking someone. This also left my hands free to hold on to the railing on the ceiling and not fall over.
It was a night game so by the time we got there the sun was already starting to set. The X100 handled really well in the dim lighting in the stadium corridors. The bright F/2 lens let in a lot of light and I felt really comfortable going all the way up to ISO 3200. This made for incredible low light pictures. The auto focus also did an awesome job in the low light. It did a better job of finding focus and not hunting than my DSLR would have in those situations. I think I might have gotten used to the auto focus because it didn’t feel as slow as it did before.
The colors coming out of the X100 were great. In some situations I had neon lights, bright stadium lights, kiosk lights all in the same shot and the camera did very well in finding a good balance between all of them and producing a pleasing picture. I almost never have to tweak the white balance unlike my Nikon DSLR.
One of my favorite things about the whole experience with it is how inconspicuous it was. I could take pictures of people right in front of me and no one seemed to mind. This NEVER happens with a DSLR. Also whenever I was done shooting I just slung it around my shoulder and forgot about it. I saw people with huge DSLRs struggling to walk down the aisles, camera in one hand, food in the other and fries falling all over the place. I felt bad for them.
In the end I discovered first hand what I already knew. This is the perfect travel/leisure camera. Every review I read was telling me this but I guess I had to figure it out myself. I’ll use my DSLR for paid work or sports/actions photography but for everything else I’ll be taking the X100.