Dpreview Investigates Fujifilm X10 'Orbs'


Dpreview Investigates Fujifilm X10 'Orbs'

The Fujifilm X10 was one of our favorite cameras of 2011, but some users have reported seeing an artifact in their images. Looking like white orbs, the artifact appears when shooting in certain lighting conditions. Fujifilm released a firmware update (version 1.03) a couple of weeks ago to resolve the problem and Dpreview has conducted an extensive investigation into the results.

An example of the 'white orbs' artifact seen in some X10 images. This was photographed with the previous firmware version 1.02, f/2 at 7.1mm, 1/2 sec, ISO400. Click to see the complete full-resolution image.

In their summary, Dpreview concludes that the new firmware update doesn't seem to solve the appearance of the white orbs, although certain steps can be taken to reduce their appearance. A difference in result between two X10 units also leads Dpreview to conclude that the artifact is likely the result of hardware issues. But Dpreview also emphasizes that the white orbs don't occur in every shot, and that "depending on the sort of photography that you do, you may encounter the problem rarely, if ever."

Combing through our own test shots, we've found the white orbs to appear only in three out of twelve different shooting scenarios, mostly when shooting at low-light into light sources or into strong highlights. We have since updated our review of the X10 to include this issue.

The white orbs seem to appear when shooting into light sources or into strong highlights. This was photographed with the previous firmware version 1.02, f/8 at 8.9mm, 12 sec, ISO100. Click to see the complete full-resolution image.

However, in this image with strong highlights, the orbs do not appear. This was photographed with the previous firmware version 1.02, f/9 at 7.1mm, 1/1500 sec, ISO400. Click to see the complete full-resolution image.

Read more about the investigation over at Dpreview.

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