22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Decent, but still a ways to go.,
Well. I like small portable flashes. I've gone through a few Sunpak 121's (they're really cheap, so I don't mind) and contemplated a Leica SF or Contax TLA200 flash, which both use awkward batteries. Eventually this Fuji flash came out, promising to be compact with good build quality and manual controls. I found one slightly used on ebay. I have a X100, though my primary camera is a Mamiya 7 medium format film camera.
-awesome build quality, seems to match the X-Pro1 and certainly does fine on my X100
-takes AAAs...not quite as convenient as AAs but still a lot better than those crazy batteries that other similar flashes take.
-TTL metering on the Fuji cameras is quite good (though I use it mostly on manual)
-controlling the flash is a breeze. for this, I would give it 5 stars. really excellent, and easy to switch between manual and TTL.
-it works really conveniently as an off-camera flash, triggered by your camera's built-in flash. I love this feature, my old Nikon DSLR had it and I can't wait to use it more with the fuji (although I suppose with a hotshoe extension cord, you could retain TTL like the Nikon somehow had).
-comes with a leather case and a little tripod adapter (as it should for over $200). both nicely made.
-it locks into the fujis with a little button release...very nice feature. it seems to still mount on all other cameras, though it won't lock into the hotshoe.
-like most of the X100's controls, the exposure dial on the EF-X20 is very loose and prone to being moved accidentally.
-it's a little bit too big for the X100. from the photos I've seen, it looks pretty balanced on the X-Pro1 (and it feels like nothing on my Mamiya 7), but on the X100 it is a little heavy compared to the camera.
-the auto-startup and shutdown. When you turn off the camera, the flash turns off too. Okay, cool. But if the camera is on and the flash is off, and you try to turn the flash on, it will start up for about a quarter of a second and then just go back off. after six or seven times of this, it will finally stay on. If the flash is already on and then you turn on the camera, the flash will go off. I'm not sure if my unit is defective, but that's pretty annoying. I discovered that if you turn them both on at the same time, they work.
Overall, this flash functions pretty well on the Fuji cameras, once you get it turned on. I really wish this flash had an auto setting with a mini exposure chart on the back (like the sunpaks do! they can be used with any camera really easily). I guess if you only shoot digital, manual mode is a fine alternative (I use it plenty on film too). Is it the perfect flash for any camera? It's just okay for that. It's really small and portable, much stronger and higher up than the X100's flash, and would make a good addition to any kit. I use flash a lot, and this one is probably the best option for the X100 and X-Pro1 unless you need to be bouncing light.