In January of 2012, Fujifilm first detailed its APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor -- the company promised superior image quality, thanks to a design that omitted an optical low-pass filter, and it delivered, in the form of the X-Pro1. That camera's relatively massive footprint and $1,700 price tag limited its appeal, however, though Fujifilm unveiled a smaller, and much more affordable variant, the X-E1, several months later. Now the saga continues. Today, the Japanese manufacturer is announcing an X-Trans-equipped model for the masses. The X-M1 includes the same 16.3-megapixel sensor as both the X-Pro1 and X-E1, yet it's housed in a lightweight body that's due to ship next month for just $700.
The X-M1 tips the scale at 11.6 ounces, including the battery and memory card, but without a lens attached. As for optics, the ILC will be available as part of a kit with a brand new f/3.5-5.6 16-50mm (24-76mm equivalent) lens with optical image stabilization for $800, and will be compatible with the existing XF and XC lineup, including a variety of prime and zoom options. There's a 3-inch 920k-dot tilting LCD (but no EVF), a built-in flash, dedicated mode dial and on-board WiFi, letting you transfer images and movies to Android and iOS devices via a dedicated app. The EXR Processor II enables the camera to start up in 0.5 seconds, with a 0.05-second shutter lag and a maximum burst shot speed of 5.6 fps for 30 consecutive frames. The cam sports a fairly standard sensitivity range of ISO 100-25,600. The X-M1 is set to hit stores in July with black and silver finishes for $700, or $800 with the lens. A brown version (body only) will also be available come August for $700.