Ok, first a couple of caveats:
1. I believe Fuji when they say that the XE2 and the lenses that I used are not waterproof, so this post is my own personal experience and, to be honest, a lack of good judgement.
2. It is not recommended to use the XE2 in the following conditions
Bonus caveat: The XE2 is NOT an AquaCam!
On our Cuba 2014 trip, I decided to bring only my Fuji XE2 and several Fuji lenses, leaving my larger Nikon DSLR system at home for the first time ever. The reasons being, less weight, more mobile, much less intimidating to subjects. One of my perennial goals was to photograph a storm at the Melacon. The Melacon is a sea wall that goes along the street of downtown Havana for about 7 miles. The Malecon is often vibrant with human activity and red hot Cuban music. But, not on this morning…
We were walking down to the Malecon, unaware of the weather, as it has been consistently sunny and hot for days. We were hoping for great, soft morning light. The clouds gathered very quickly and the wind picked up. After a moment of disappointment, I began to realize that this is what I have been waiting for and my pace began to quicken.
Arriving at the Malecon, the large breaking waves were incredible and were coming up onto the street. The main street on the Malecon is closed, or is assumed to be closed, during these conditions. It was actually a bit chilly, and wet didn’t help.
I wanted to use the XE2 and the 35mm, f/1.4 because of the very low light, knowing that it was not waterproof, but hoping that a little ambient mist would be ok. Well, there was a little ambient mist, quickly followed by becoming repeatedly drenched in salt water. But, during the shooting time, the XE2 and lens worked flawlessly. I also knew that the water hasn’t seeped into the camera mechanisms, yet. My wiser friends, who did not get the dramatic water shots, by the way, were standing way back in the distance, incredulous that I was subjecting my XE2 to such camera-cidal conditions. Only 4 of us were putting our cameras (several with Fujis) at risk. I don’t know how everyone else faired out, although I’m sure we would have heard something if there were any salt water damage issues.
All of this said, I dried off the XE2 back in the room and was waiting for the camera to malfunction due to salt water for the remainder of our trip. To my surprise, it functioned perfectly during the tour, and to this day. Since then, I got the XT1, which adds more confidence to shooting in challenging conditions.
REMINDER: It is NOT recommended for you to shoot the XE2 in the rain or in splashing water. I consider myself lucky that my XE2 was unaffected by this experience, and have no intention of repeating it.
That said, here’s a few shots of our storm at the Malecon. oh yeah…I used ISO1600 to ISO3200 only.
I, and many others, are still looking forward to the addition of a 2-stop auto bracket and more multiple exposures in a future firmware update.
That aside, my primo kit these days is an XT1 and XE2 and the following lenses: 14mm, 23mm 35mm, 60mm, 10-24mm, 18-55mm, 55-200mm, and the Rokinon 8mm fisheye. I’ll be picking up the 56mm later this year before Cuba 2015, and will have a hard look at the 120-400 later this year! I’m currently getting my Xpro converted to infrared and will have it delivered when we are in the Palouse.
We start hitting the road pretty hard beginning in about a week to the Palouse. You can see our 2014 Visual Artstry schedule here. We have a few openings in our fall series (New Hampshire and Acadia). Please contact Susan for more info and to register.
Thanks for taking the time and we’ll see ya online!