Fuji X100 infrared compared to Converted Olympus E-PM1

Just for fun I thought I would compare my IR converted E-PM1 with my Fuji X100, both with an IR720nm filter.  The E-PM1 has the IR blocking filter removed so shooting hand held at any f-stop is no problem.  The fuji is off the shelf but is still good for hand held IR shots at f2 and ISO1600.  At those settings the Fuji X100 shutter speed is normally around 1/30th of a second, which is completely fine for hand held as long as you’re careful.

All the images have been processed in GIMP, if anyone is interested there is a tutorial here -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jlQ0qDpMktI

The gear used;

Converted Olympus E-PM1 (IR hot filter removed)
Olympus 9-18mm lens (almost no hot spot, great for IR)
ISO 200

Fuji X100 (standard off the shelf)
23mm f2
ISO 1600

Black and white images first
Olympus E-PM1 image on top, Fuji X100 image below

1 Bed lake side processed bw EPM1
2 Bed lake side processed bw FUJI

9 Tree lake front processed BW EPM1
10 Tree lake front processed BW FUJI

Colour processed images of the same scene, E-PM1 (top) and Fuji (below)

11 Tree lake front processed EPM1
12 Tree lake front processed FUJI

A close up scene to show the difference in depth of field.  The Fuji really deals well with lens flare in this situation, the Oly less so, but of course it’s art.   E-PM1 at f5.6 (top) and the Fuji being at f2 (below)

5 Scales processed EPM1
6 Scales processed FUJI

The E-PM1 tends to have more subtle colours, with the Fuji being more bold, the processing used is not exactly the same as the files are quite different, but I tried to make them similar.  E-PM1 (top) and Fuji (below)

7 Tree processed EPM1
8 Tree processed FUJI

3 Boat processed EPM1
4 Boat processed FUJI

Fuji X100

Fuji X100 hand held infrared (unmodified standard camera)

It has been a real delight to find out just how good the X100 is for Infrared, it’s a combination of having a virtually hot spot free lens, and clean files up to ISO1600.
The shutter speeds in full sun with an IR720nm filter at ISO1600 tend to be around 1/30th of a second which is hand holdable this lens, just make sure you take a few shots of the same scene in case on or two end up with motion shake.

The below image is an Out of Camera JPG with the following settings;

  • Infrared 720nm filter
  • Black and White
  • ISO1600
  • DR400
  • Shadow Tone – Hard
  • Highlight Tone – Normal


All the images below have the same settings as above, but a little contrast and curve adjustment in post processing (GIMP).


cane field road line

cane field


Palm Road and truck

Fuji X100 dynamic Range

It took a little bit of time to figure out what the Dynamic Range setting’s in the Fuji X100 actually are and how they work.  I decided to make some comparisons to fine out.  DR100 is the default and works at base ISO200.

I am not going to profess to completely understand it, but essentially;

DR100 (100%) – works on ISO 200  and above
DR200 (200%) – works on ISO 400  and above
DR400 (400%) – works on ISO 800  and above

It takes one image and then does some push pull processing internally to boost some shadows and recover some highlights.   The below images were taken with DR100 (ISO200) on top and DR400 (ISO800) below.

This highlight recovery seems to be the biggest plus of using a high DR setting.   Even in the over exposed backlit scene below of the rocks DR400 keeps some sky detail and some highlights on the rocks.

rock over expose DR100
rock over expose DR400

The zoomed in section shows how colour information is also retained in the rock.  Because ISO noise is so well controlled in the X100 the DR400 (ISO800) image has very little noise, only noticeable when you pixel peep.

rock over expose left DR100 right DR 400

One could argue that if you expose correctly in the first place such highlight recovery is not necessary, but to me the X100 just likes to keep things bright and it’s sometimes tricky not to blow the whites, especially if you are taking shots in low or high positions where you can’t see the histogram.

fish traps DR100
fish traps DR400

the close up section shows the blue sky recovered and the wicker basket recovered

fish traps zoom left DR100 right DR 400

Unlike High Dynamic Range, DR400 does not seem to bring up the shadows as much as it does retain the highlights, DR100 (ISO200) on top and DR400 (ISO800) below

troll statue DR100
troll statue DR400

troll statue ii DR100
troll statue ii DR400



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