The Fuji X-E3’s premium body is Fujifilm’s most compact yet
Although it retains the familiar (and frankly, timeless) rangefinder-like styling of earlier X-E models, as well as their premium feel with precision-milled aluminum dials up top, the Fuji X-E3 is nevertheless a ground-up redesign. And while its predecessors already drew praise for their trim proportions, the X-E3 takes things to the next level.
Fujifilm has somehow managed to identify and trim away a little more fat, and the result is the company’s most compact, lightweight viewfinder-equipped X-series interchangeable-lens camera to date, with dimensions of just 4.8 x 2.9 x 1.7 inches (121.3 x 73.9 x 42.7mm). That’s about a third of an inch less wide than before and just a fraction less tall as well,. Depth has grown by about 0.2 inches, likely due to a more generous handgrip, and weight has fallen by around half an ounce, to 11.9 ounces (337g) with battery and memory card, but without the lens.
A quick tour of the Fuji X-E3’s new body
Seen from the front, the Fuji X-E3 looks a whole lot like its predecessors, despite its more compact proportions. There is, of course, still a Fujifilm X-mount dominating the front of the body, on which you can mount one of 25 different Fuji X-mount lens models as of this writing, not to mention a variety of third-party lenses or mount adapters intended for use with X-mount cameras.
The most immediately-noticeable changes other than the model number are its reprofiled, deeper handgrip, a relocation of the autofocus assist lamp to accommodate a new front control dial, and the fact that the swage line above the top of the leatherette trim which covers most of the front deck is now straight from end to end, where previously it dipped at one end to accommodate the model number.
A brand-new touch-screen interface and an eight-way joystick in place of the four-way controller
But it’s on the back of the camera where you’ll find the bulk of the changes. Here, Fujifilm has completely reinvented the control layout. The result is a much cleaner-looking, less cluttered body, and a user interface which does away with a four-way controller in favor of an eight-way joystick control. (We’re not yet sure whether this will function in menus, but it can be used to select the focus area in record mode.)
The Fuji X-E3 is the first X-series camera with Bluetooth LE support
Another first for the Fujifilm X-E3 is to be found in the wireless connectivity department. The earlier X-E2 already sported Wi-Fi wireless networking capability, but the X-E3 now offers up a Bluetooth Low Energy radio. This is something which we’ve never seen in previous Fuji X-series cameras, and it’s a feature which should allow for easier pairing with the free Fujifilm Camera Remote app on your smartphone or tablet.