RIP x100s

Well, the experiment with digital is now over. Not by choice mind you, but butterfingers here dropped his brand new Fuji x100s. It still works, but for how long, not so sure. I thought it was okay but upon removing the filter and hood the front element nearly fell off entirely. I pushed it back in, put the filter and hood on and lit a candle in honor of our time together.

Photo on 5-20-13 at 9.48 AM

The reality is I don’t have time for digital photography, at least not when working on a trip like this. No time for download, edit, tweak and convert files when I’m running on a few hours of sleep while on the perpetual go. It sounds crazy but it is the truth. The ONLY way to work is with a phone, which I can use to shoot and upload on the spot. I’m not a huge fan of working with a phone but at this point not sure there is anyway around it. In keeping with my f****** horrible luck with technology, the Aussie cell phone I purchased is also on the blink. Did I mention my Lightroom imploded as well? I’ll not even bother to explain that, but a local LR person helped me reinstall and start the great process over again. Oh, the card slot on my laptop…that doesn’t work either. FYI

There are certain undeniable signs in life, and I’ve been doing my best to try and ignore the one in regard to me working digitally. At this point I have to say, it wasn’t meant to be. I love my film cameras, their incredible performance, and the reality that I like to deal with my work on a slower pace, on my own time, and in a more tactile way. Yes they are bulkier, heavier and require the subsequent bag-o-film but the reward, at least for me, is just too strong. Not that ANY of this matters to any of you.

I envy my digital loving friends and am not in ANY way casting a negative vibe towards ANYTHING in the tech or digital world. I’m only turned on by happy photographers, and whatever makes you happy is what makes me happy. I feel horrible for my friends at Fuji. This is an impressive little beast, but one I managed to slay before the relationship really began.

31 responses to “RIP x100s”

  1. Kevin Lloyd says:

    I’m on my third of these cameras (the first two were the origional X100 non “s” version), and you miss’em when they’re gone, I’m guessing you’ll pick up another in time… 🙂
    I hope you have a film camera with you too.

    Thanks for the read


    • Smogranch says:

      I’ve got a blad with me. I won’t get another but it’s nothing to do with the camera. I need a phone and my film cameras to fulfill my needs.

    • Kevin Lloyd says:

      Fair enough. As much as I might seem like a pro digital man (I like both actually), I came to your blog when looking for reviews of the Fuji GF670 as I’m tempted by one…
      From there your words about stepping back from being a “pro” resonated with me.
      What happened to your GF670?, or which blog posting do you discuss it’s demise (for you), in?


    • Smogranch says:

      Still have it. Still use it. Great camera. A bit fragile but very sharp. Great viewfinder and almost totally silent.

  2. Spencer Wynn says:

    Such bad luck down under! As a lover of your now decrepit X100s, I have lit several of my Tibetan prayer sticks for your fallen Comrade and chant the sutras of your digital demise. Do not fall fully to the dark side, there is still hope and light in 1’s & 0’s.

    Your ‘Blad will see you through and hopefully the screeners at security will know what those small tubes you call film are when you insist on a “hand inspection”!

    Be well and go forth Jedi Milnor, the universe needs rays of light that sometimes come from distant stars.

    • Smogranch says:

      Thanks Spencer,

      I’m sure at some point, after returning to Degobah, I will once again attempt to dabble. Now I have a wounded mind that needs a little distance to fully understand the depths of my clumbsiness.

  3. Mike Read says:

    how unlucky!
    I had a friend who had his x100 run-over by a car and it still kept working. Sounds like yours must’ve landed on the sweet spot!

  4. All companies that produce electronics should pay you to road-test them. You’d be ideally suited for Dagobah, not much in the way of electronics there, just a strange backwards talking frog.

  5. LionelB says:

    Now a motion sensor linked to an on-board ballistic mini-parachute would have taken care of that for you. I do wonder why it isn’t a menu option under Operator Characteristics: Insurance Risk Factor Elements. Or maybe it is but you never got down to that level of sub-sub-menu.

  6. Paul Treacy says:

    That little camera will play on your mind more then ever before when you’re no longer in possession of it. I think Kevin Lloyd may prove correct in time.

    Mine’s well bashed up after two years of daily use and the strap eyelets have failed. Now I’m using the tripod socket to secure a strap but I’m not getting on so well with this. I’ll be contacting Fuji to see what my options are.

    Wish me luck. If I need to send it in again, I’ll be well out of sorts.

    I’ve been a pro shooter since 91 and I have absolutely no time whatsoever for film anymore. It’s wasteful and slow. I delight in not ever having to consider a darkroom ever again.

    Now, if only I could get my hands on a Leica ME. Alas, having sons attending independent secondary school in the near future, it’s extremely unlikely. The X series will have to suffice.

    – Paul.

    • Smogranch says:

      As for film being wasteful, it’s nowhere near the wastefulness of digital when you consider the raw and toxic materials required to continually produce the products needed to sustain the digital revolution. the NYT’s did a story a few years ago titled something like ‘The Digital Landfill,” which was very sobering. As for film being slow, YES, that is the point. It is slow, which is precisely how I want to work. I don’t want to see my images right away. I love the limitations film puts on me because it makes me think. I’ve rarely if ever overshot a scene with film, but I’ve done it with digital and so have every single one of my friends who shoots digital. As do my students. There could, however, be an upside to this.
      The darkroom is laborious, time-consuming and requires me to focus ONE HUNDRED percent of my attention on what I’m doing. There is no phone, no email, no distractions. A sanctuary, not a place to be dreaded or feared.
      The Fuji is already out of my mind. It’s a great machine but was only purchased for my Blurb duties. I had no intention of using it for projects. I’ll be back to my F6 and Blad, experiencing the back pain I’m grow to love…..NOT.

  7. Mathias says:

    This made me laugh. Some things aren´t ment to be, Daniel. I bet when you get the Negatives from your Hasselblad you´ll wonder why you started the whole thing anyway.

  8. Chris says:

    I would be more concerned that it appears to have sprouted hair!
    Are you in Perth this weekend or next?

  9. Chris says:

    I would be more concerned that it appears to have sprouted hair!

  10. Reiner says:

    Don’t own such a little bugger, but is written on top of it: FujiFILM.
    Clear ‘nough for me. They’re not planning to chop the root from their tree.
    Keep strong.

  11. yes, perhaps the universe is telling you to concentrate on film

    I’ll bet if you dropped the Blad or an M4 they’d keep on ticking

    • Smogranch says:

      Dropped the blad before, it’s fine. I have dropped and dinged an M6, several times, but the repairs were mechanical not electronic.

  12. AK FOTO says:

    I was watching a documentary on William Eggelston. He said that when he shoots he didn’t have a hard time editing because he only shot one picture of each thing. The spray and pray method of digital can be a nightmare….

  13. Glenn says:

    Dan, that is a real bummer. Sounds like the universe is sending you a message. Have fun down under.


  14. Tom says:

    Oh noooooo. That’s too bad. They are very capable cameras. Really great lens. The autofocus I didn’t like. The results could be really stellar and I had some great success with it before I sold it. It is possible to take your time and think with this camera or any camera for that matter. The idea that digital images are ‘free’ probably leads to people taking far too many pictures and then wasting huge time sifting through them all. The rate of change in digital cameras is huge and yes the pile of waste created is insane.

    • Smogranch says:

      I needed this for one small thing I was doing but made the decision to just use a phone. It’s more immediate which is what i need. Film and phone is my new/old method.

  15. Yann says:

    Dan – Sorry to read this. You might be right with the signs, maybe some people are just not meant to use digital and you are one of them? I believe this kind of unexpected constraint imposed upon us is a challenge to do better with less, and the blad can be plenty with the right vibe. Taking the advice for myself, I just packed a M7, a single 50mm, few rolls of Tri-x for a trip in Denmark. The digital stuff stays home since I stop enjoying using it.

  16. andreas says:

    here’s my take on least on the fuji thing. i bought one the day it was available here in TO. in fact, i chased down the rep to get it. shot a few weddings with it. kept on saying “its pretty damn good”. it now sits in my safe and hasn’t been used in over a year…

  17. Hannah Kozak says:

    I think it is a sign. You love film, you always have. Yes, it’s a slower process which is exactly the point. So many benefits to shooting film not to mention the fun factor of getting your images back and the delight of going through one shot or so of each, not dozens, as many of us overshoot digitally. I for one, am happy to hear you are going back to the M6. My best shots ever are from film where I had one chance to get the shot.

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