Fujifilm had arguably the biggest, bestest camera announcement at CES 2012. Their brand-new flagship, the X-Pro1, is the company's inaugural crack at a mirrorless compact system shooter, and the first interchangeable-lens camera they've launched since the S5 Pro in 2007.
Last year's X100 premium compact was a big success (they're still filling back-orders), and anticipation built to a fever pitch for Fuji to announce an interchangeable-lens version based on the same throwback rangefinder aesthetic.
And here it is, a retro-chic camera with a magnesium-alloy chassis and faux-leather grip, built around a 16 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, and equipped with the brand new X mount and an updated version of their OVF/EVF hybrid viewfinder. Three bright, prime lenses will be available at launch, with super-wide and zoom lenses available by the end of the year. That's a premium system if we've ever heard of one.
While every other major manufacturer has so far targeted their mirrorless cameras at mid-range enthusiasts, and even casual, step-up shooters, Fuji is aiming the X-Pro1 toward the hands of professionals and semi-professionals—street photographers, wedding photographers, or any serious shooter that wants a high-quality, portable complement to a DSLR rig.
Fujifilm is waiting until the end of the month to announce official pricing, but they suggested that the body will cost about $1,700 and the lenses about $650 each at a press conference. That's well out of the range of most amateur photographers, but a camera as drool-worthy as this one deserves a close look (that's why you're reading this, right?). We spent some time with the X-Pro1 on the CES 2012 showroom floor to gather some initial impressions. Read on for our thoughts.