The Fujifilm X100 camera line has consistently appeared in lists of the best compact cameras over the last decade. This is not surprising; the series boasts a sharp 23mm f/2 Fujinon lens, great ergonomics, and a ton of cool features.
The series started with the original X100 in 2010, but is now in its fifth iteration with the launch of the Fujifilm X100V in February 2020.
As a “take everywhere” camera, the X100 line has many advantages. But perhaps one of the drawbacks is that there isn’t a lot you can add to it to increase its versatility.
Or is there?
In this article, I take a look at the NiSi filter system for Fujifilm X100-series cameras.
So if you’re ready for a thorough NiSi filter system review, let’s get started.
Fujifilm X100-series accessories
Until recently, the only thing you could add to an X100-series camera that truly added to its versatility was one of Fujifilm’s teleconverters.
Although the optical quality is excellent, the teleconverters are relatively heavy and quite pricey. If only there was something lighter and cheaper yet with excellent optical quality that would add to the X100 camera experience…
Enter the NiSi filter system for X100-series cameras.
As a long-time user of the X100 series, I was excited to see NiSi recently launch a filter system for this camera lineup.
So, as a long-time user of the X100 series, I couldn’t wait to try out this new NiSi filter system.
NiSi filter system for Fujifilm X100-series cameras
For this NiSi filter system review, I tested the filters designed for Fujifilm X100-series cameras on my Fujifilm X100F.
Here’s what’s included in the kit:
- NiSi 3-stop medium-edge graduated filter
- NiSi HD polarizer filter
- NiSi ND8 3-stop neutral density filter
- NiSi Natural Night filter
- NiSi X100 filter holder
- Filter carrying case
There is also a slightly cheaper starter kit that contains only two filters: the medium-edge graduated ND filter and the polarizer. I’m not sure why you would opt for the starter kit when, for a small additional cost, you can get two extra, very useful filters.
My first impression of the kit was very positive: the quality and design of both the packaging and the filters is impressive.
The filters come in a light gray filter case, which has a tough shell and looks to be hard-wearing. Inside, each filter is wrapped individually in tissue paper. The filter case has several divider tabs inside, one for each filter as well as the filter holder.
My next thought was to marvel at how tiny the kit was, so much smaller than my 100mm NiSi filters. Of course, when you think about how big the lens is on the X100, it makes perfect sense for the set to be so small.
The filter set is as light as a feather and very compact. If weight matters to you, you’ll barely notice this new bit of kit in your bag.
The build quality of the kit is excellent. The filter holder is constructed with aluminum alloy (the same material used in the popular NiSi V6 100mm filter kit). The filters themselves are made of high quality, precision-annealed optical glass, which is a point of difference as some other companies use resin.
Installation and usability
Getting your X100-series camera ready to use the filters is super easy.
First, unscrew the front ring on your camera’s lens. If you’ve never used a lens hood or teleconverter on your X100-series camera before, you may even be surprised to know there is a ring that comes off the front of the camera.
When this ring is taken off, it reveals a thread mount. The next step is to screw the NiSi filter holder onto the lens. Now you’re all ready to go!
Using the filters
Once the filter holder is in place, take a filter out of the pouch and slide it carefully into the filter slot closest to the lens.
Note that the holder has two slots so you can add another filter to the holder if you wish.
Quite often, I found myself using filters in combination; for example, at dusk I was using the 3-stop ND filter to get longer exposure times for ferry trails on the Brisbane River, along with the Natural Night filter to correct the color of the light. In very bright conditions, I often used the graduated ND filter along with the polarizer filter.
The filter holder rotates 360 degrees, which is very handy for when you need to use the graduated ND filter in either horizontal or vertical orientation. Of course, for the other three filters, the orientation doesn’t matter.
NiSi 3-stop medium-edge graduated ND filter
The NiSi 3-stop medium-edge graduated ND filter is a fantastic piece of kit to have in your camera bag.
As with all graduated neutral density filters, it helps to darken specific areas of an image such as bright skies. But as a graduated filter, it allows normal exposure in other parts of the image.
The filter is quite long in comparison to the length of the filter holder, allowing you to move the filter up and down in the holder to control its exact placement.
NiSi HD Polarizer
The NiSi HD Polarizer reduces reflections and glare by filtering out light that has become polarized due to reflection from non-metallic surfaces.
This comes in handy when you want to remove glare on the water or reflections when shooting through glass. The filter provides good color and saturation in scenes.
I enjoyed using the polarizer, though the effect is less noticeable compared to the other filters.
This filter is probably the most fun and most dramatic filter to use in the kit. It’s fantastic to create long exposures using this filter; you can then see the effect it has on moving elements in your photos.
Natural Night filter
The NiSi Natural Night filter is the perfect companion for night photography. When shooting cityscapes, many factors affect the color of the light; these include mercury vapor, sodium, and low-CRI streetlights. The glow from these light sources prevents your camera from seeing the sky properly and can negatively affect your images.
The NiSi Natural Night filter blocks out the most common wavelengths of light pollution, leaving you with a more natural-looking night image.
Here’s an image taken without the NiSi Natural Night filter:
And here’s the same composition, captured once the NiSi Natural Night filter had been added:
NiSi filter system review: Conclusion
I’ve really enjoyed using the NiSi filter system for the Fujifilm X100 lineup.
The filters are a fantastic addition for anyone shooting with this series of cameras. They add another layer of versatility without compromising the compact nature of your setup.
Until recently, the only way to add to the versatility of the king of compact cameras was by purchasing a pricey (and heavy) teleconverter. But with this kit, you have multiple creative options to use depending on the conditions.
Boasting excellent build quality, the professional kit contains four useful filters. They are small, light, and come beautifully packaged in their own tough case.
In fact, I can’t recommend this filter set highly enough.
So now that you’ve finished this NiSi filter system review, the question is not, “Why would you buy the system?”
It’s rather: “Why wouldn’t you buy it?”
You can grab the NiSi filter system here.