As I get more experienced with savvy and practical traveling, I’ve learned a wealth of skills. One important skill is to pack light and right. This includes my camera. I have a friend who lugs around a huge cumbersome camera bag with his repertoire of gear, and it’s heavy. I on the other hand like the freedom of a fairly compact camera that’s capable of capturing everything I need. That’s why I like the Fujifilm cameras, they’re lightweight, versatile and take great images. Fujifilm recently upgraded their entry level X-A series camera and the new X-A3 is even better than its humble predecessor.
I’ve been using the X-A2 for the past few years and have gotten into the groove of how it works. It’s a fantastic camera in itself, but if you’re a novice like me, upgraded features like those on the new X-A3 make picture taking a lot simpler, easier and way more fun.
The Fujifilm X-A3 camera comes with an XC16-50mmF3.5-5.6 OIS II lens, USB cable, body cap, rechargeable battery, AC power adapter and the all important owner’s manual. For the newbie photographer or those who just want hassle free picture taking, this camera offers automatic and point-and-shoot options, and for those who know their way around a camera, they have the option to adjust it manually. All choices will have you functioning and snapping photos like a pro without a lot of effort or photography skills. The X-A3 comes in three mod colors, silver, pink and brown.
In addition to a wide range of shooting modes, the FUJIFILM X-A3 just like the X-A2 offers a selection of versatile scene positions that ensure optimum results no matter what the scene.
Visually the Fujifilm X-A3 mirrorless camera still has the same nostalgic look, but there a few minor changes. The selector panel, mount area, and top cover are aluminum and the flash button has been moved from the rear to the side of the camera. Plus, it’s slimmer, sleeker and has a better grip.
New Image Sensor
One of the biggest upgrades is the image sensor. It has an increased resolution of 24 MP, which gives you outstanding image definition, clarity, and quality. There are also 3 new Autofocus modes, Single Point, Zone and Wide.
New Touch-Sensitive Tilting LCD Monitor
Another fantastic upgrade is the new Touch-Sensitive Tilting LCD monitor. This is such a cool feature. To use it, you first get your subject framed on the LCD and zoom in or out by pinching your fingers —just like on your Smartphone. When you’re happy with the shot, just tap the screen and the photo will be taken.
The LCD also flips up 180° so you can take a selfie. Eye detection and Portrait Enhancer mode will automatically engage when you rotate the tilting LCD panel. It helps to achieve superior selfies by focusing on the eyes, and your skin will look brighter and smoother. Also, the grip has been optimized for selfies, making it easier to secure the camera while shooting self-portraits.
Selfie Timer Mode
Although the X-A2 predecessor also has a selfie timer, the X-A3 comes with 3 new modes; Smile Detection, Buddy Timer, and Group Timer. The shutter is automatically released when the subjects smile, when two people come closer together, or when a specified number of people comes into the frame.
Super Intelligent Flash
The X-A3 has a more intelligent flash that will sense how much light you’ll need for the best picture in any lighting situation. Use the built in pop-up Flash and it will automatically determine if you need the full power of a flash or reduce it down to shooting just a few pulses so your images are not washed out.
Stimulation Modes & Creative Advanced Filters
The X-A3 has eleven Stimulation Modes which include the Pro Neg Hi, Pro Neg Standard, Microchrome+Ye, Monochrome+R and Monochrome+G. It also includes two new Creative Advanced Filters, Fish Eye and Cross Screen.
Fish Eye Mode
The Fish Eye mode distorts your images making them look like your subject is in a bubble. Pros say not to use the mode, but what’s life if you can’t get creative; we loved the effect. It opens up a whole new world of fun and unpredictable panoramic photo shots.
The battery has been improved for handling the heat that’s created while taking videos. Plus, the battery no longer has to use a dedicated battery charger, it can be charged with a USB cable from an AC adapter or your computer.
Just like the X-A2, you can easily send photos directly to the Instax SHARE Smartphone Printer SP-2 for great quality prints of their family, friends, pets and more. Additionally, portrait images are produced with a pleasant out-of-focus background for amazing one-of-a-kind instant prints – perfect for home décor.
Plus, for easy wireless transfer of photos to your smartphone or tablet just download the free dedicated “FUJIFILM Camera Remote” application to your device. There’s no need to enter an ID, password or to change other troublesome settings; with just a touch of a button, you can transfer your high-quality images to your phone or tablet ready to upload to your blog or social networking site.
The hubs and I packed up the buggy and went to British Columbia to spend time with family and just chill out. Even though we encountered a lot of smoke from the forest fires, we still enjoyed being there and were able to capture some impressive shots. We had fun taking pictures of the scenery, wildlife and relatives in various camera modes. You just have to turn the dial to choose your mode and the camera will automatically adjust its setting to fit the mode. So cool! So user-friendly!
Pop color emphasizes contrast and color saturation. The deer walk freely through my brother-in-law’s property, but with the lack of rain and hot temperatures, the scenery was lack luster. With the Pop Color filter, it brought life to the image. The deer stopped to pose for us, how nice.
Not all photos do people justice, even if it’s family you’re talking about. But, with the Portrait Mode, your skin looks smoother and your skin tone is enhanced. If you tap the touchscreen, you can choose a level of enhancement —you’re given 3 levels— choose what you feel is the best option for your photo. Say cheese!
The landscape mode will help you take those gorgeous panoramic shots that defy words. The photo looks a little hazy due to the smoke from distant forest fires, but it was a sunny warm day. This is what my brother and sister-in-law wake up to every morning. What a view!
But for comparison, here is a scenic shot with the Pop Color filter. It certainly adds richness and vibrancy to the photo.
Night mode is for low to no light scenarios. I got a good picture of the moon shining over Chrystal Palace, a hotel/spa, that’s on the other side of Okanagan Lake. I used night mode and both zooms, LCD and optical.
The X-A3 is so easy to use and will build your confidence when taking and creating specific photos. I had a blast learning the new features; they make me look like a better photographer. No matter the skill level, the X-A3 is the perfect camera for everyone.
Disclaimer: I received the Fujifilm X-A3 for review. All opinions expressed here are my own.