Fujifilm's X100F should be its best fixed-lens camera to date

Fourth time's a charm.

The X100 has, since its inception, been for many the ultimate compact camera. Originally released in 2010, it was the first entry to Fujifilm's X-series of digital cameras, pairing classic aesthetics with a 23mm (35mm equivalent) prime lens, hybrid optical-electric viewfinder and a APS-C sensor. Fujifilm has since released the X100S, which brought with it the company's X-Trans sensor, and the X100T, with a range of more subtle improvements. Now, the company is trying again, with the X100F.

So, what's new? If you're staring down the barrel of its lens, "not much" appears to be the answer. It's still got the classic X100 design, dominated by the 23mm f/2.0 prime lens. But a lot has changed behind the scenes. First, inside is the third-generation X-Trans sensor, as seen in the X-Pro2 and X-T2. It's a 24.3-megapixel unit, and from past experience it's very, very good. The new sensor is joined be an improved 91-point autofocus system.

The viewfinder has some more subtle improvements of its predecessor, now offering up to 6x magnification (as opposed to the X100T's 2.5x). The electronic elements (the viewfinder can run entirely optical, hybrid, or entirely electric) all now run at 60 frames per second.

Controls have also changed fairly significantly, ditching the split of buttons either side of the screen in favor of a layout that'll be familiar to X-Pro2 and X-T2 users. Pretty much all the controls are now to the right of the screen (easier to reach with your right thumb), and there's a new joystick for focusing.

There are a few other improvments, including a new film mode, but those are the key points. The Fujifilm X100F looks to be the most significant overhaul of the X100 series since its inception, improving on handling, performance and image quality. It'll be available this February for $1,299.