Fuji X-A1 review

Fuji's entry-level CSC gets more affordable

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Our Verdict

The X-A1 scores well for build and functionality and price, which makes the slight dip in image quality in comparison with the Fuji X-M1 palatable. It also provides a step into Fuji's X-system, which has a growing collection of lenses.


  • Most affordable Fuji CSC
  • Natural, vibrant images
  • Tilting LCD


  • No viewfinder
  • Screen not touch-sensitive
  • Standard sesnor
Ratings in depth

Fuji X A1

Fuji X A1

Fuji X A1

Fuji X A1

Fuji X A1

The Fuji X-A1 is the fourth model in the company's X-series of compact system cameras, but it is identical to the Fuji X-M1 in all but one vital way - the sensor. Whereas the Fuji X-M1 has the same APS-C format X-Trans CMOS sensor as the Fuji X-Pro 1 and Fuji X-E1, the X-A1 has an APS-C format CMOS sensor with a Bayer pattern primary colour filter.

While the X-Trans sensor's random colour filter arrangements means it doesn't require an optical low pass filter, the more standard Bayer pattern filter over X-A1's sensor does. This is likely to mean that the 16.3 million pixel sensor of the X-A1 isn't able to resolve quite as much sharp detail as the 16.3 million pixel sensor in Fuji's other cameras. However, we've been happy with Bayer patterns in digital cameras for years, so it may not be a major issue.

Fuji X A1
It's very similar to the X-M1

The change to a more common sensor design enables Fuji to offer X-A1 at a more affordable price than the X-M1; with the X-A1 retailing for around US$599/£499 with the 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens and the X-M1 retailing for around US$799/£679 with the same optic.


Fuji has coupled the X-A1's sensor with its EXR Processor II, the same processing engine as in the X-M1, and this enables the X-A1 to shoot up at up to 5.6fps (frames per second) for up to 30 JPEG or 10 raw (or raw & JPEG) files. It also allows sensitivity to be set in a native range of ISO 200-6400, but there are expansion settings of ISO 100, 12800 and 25600 available when shooting JPEGs.

As we would expect with a camera in Fuji's X-series, images may be saved to the SD/SDHC/SDXC card as raw or JPEG files, or both simultaneously. There are also five Film Simulation modes – Provia (standard), Velvia (vivid), Astia (muted), Sepia and Black-and-White – with which to tailor the look of the JPEG images.

While these modes may be used when shooting raw files simultaneously, the Advanced Filter options (Toy Camera, Miniature, Dynamic Tone, Pop Colour, Soft Focus, High Key, Low Key and Partial Colour) are JPEG-only. This is a shame, as it means you can't retain a 'clean' raw image for post-capture processing alongside the JPEG with the filter applied.

Fuji X A1
Red and blue are colour options alongside black

Fuji provides an unusual array of bracketing options including Auto Exposure (±1/3EV/±2/3EV/±1EV), Film Simulation mode (three user-selectable options), Dynamic Range (100%, 200% and 400%) and Sensitivity (±1/3EV/±2/3EV/±1EV), so there are plenty of options for the indecisive as well as in tricky lighting conditions.

In common with the majority of recently announced cameras, the X-A1 has Wi-Fi connectivity built-in. This enables images to be transferred wirelessly to a smartphone or tablet via Fujifilm's free app, and from there they can be shared on Facebook and Twitter etc. The camera can also use Geotagging data from a smartphone to tag an image.

Fuji also provides its free PC AutoSave software ( for Windows and Mac) for transferring images wirelessly to a computer. Once the camera has been paired with your Wi-Fi router it's just a question of selecting the folder to which the images will be saved. From then on, images should be saved automatically once a wireless connection is established.

Fuji X A1
There's no built-in viewfinder

Like the X-M1, the X-A1 doesn't have a viewfinder built-in, but there is a three-inch 920,000-LCD screen mounted on a tilting bracket which offers a view of around 100% of the frame. This is only the second time that Fuji has used a tilting screen, with the first being on the X-M1.

As usual with a compact system camera, the Fuji X-A1 uses a contrast detection autofocus (AF) system. This has 49 points which may be selected individually by the photographer, or the choice can be left to the camera in Multi AF mode. These options are backed-up by Tracking AF and Continuous AF modes for use with moving subjects and manual focus mode for when the need arises.

Although the X-A1 has a small pop-up flash unit built-in (Guide Number 7 at ISO 100), there's a hotshoe for mounting an external flashgun for those times when more powerful illumination is required.

Tech Specs

Product TypeMirrorless Camera with Lens
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Wireless LANYes
Effective Camera Resolution16.3 Megapixel
Product FamilyX
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC UHS-I), Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC UHS-I)
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom3.1x
Brand NameFujifilm
FeaturesFace Detection, Orientation Sensor, Continuous Shooting Mode
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsH.264, MOV
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)280 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityREACH
Image Sensor Size23.60 mm x 15.60 mm
Maximum Image Resolution4896 x 3264
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height66 mm
Width116.8 mm
Depth38.1 mm
Product SeriesX
Focal Length16 mm to 50 mm (Lens 1)
Image FormatsJPEG, RAW
External FlashOptional
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerFuji Photo Film Co. Ltd
Product ModelX-A1
Product NameX-A1 Mirrorless Camera
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Aperture Priority
  • Shutter Priority
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberP10NC11810A
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.fujifilm.co.uk
Marketing Information
  • A compact and stylish FUJIFILM X entry-level interchangeable-lens camera.
  • Large 16.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor that captures rich tonal expression, has an increased dynamic range and sensitivity settings up to a maximum ISO of 25600.
  • High definition tiltable 3-inch LCD
  • Compatible with all Fujifilm X mount lenses and particularly suited to the compact and lightweight FUJINON XC lenses
  • Wireless image transfer for instant transfer to a mobile device or computer.
Package Contents
  • X-A1 Mirrorless Camera
  • FUJINON XC16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OIS Lens
  • Li-ion Battery NP-W126
  • Battery Charger BC-W126
  • Shoulder Strap
  • Body Cap
  • Software CD-ROM
  • Owner's Manual