Match Technical Thumbs Up EP-7S Review For The Fuji X-Pro1

by Patrick on July 22, 2013 · 22 comments

in Equipment Review, Other Reviews

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Match Technical Thumbs Up EP-7S Review:

Like almost everything else in the world these days, camera equipment can be customized to suit one’s needs.  This customization goes further than just picking what kind of lenses or film you prefer (if you shoot with film).  Nowadays, there’s a huge market for little trinkets, such as, neck straps, hand grips and even soft release buttons.  One popular accessory for rangefinder and mirrorless cameras are the Thumbs Up devices made by Match Technical.  I’ve heard of only great things about Match Technical’s Thumbs Up devices but never used them because I was content with how my cameras felt in my hands.  As they say, “If it ain’t broke, why fix it?”  So, why am I writing a post about the Thumbs Up EP-7S for the X-Pro1?  Well, one of my friends, who’s visiting from California, recently bought an EP-7S for his X-Pro1, and told me I need to try it out.  I figured, why not?  Who am I to say no to trying out new gear, right?

Match Technical Thumbs Up EP-7S Build Quality:

The great thing about the EP-7S is that it looks like an OEM product on my X-Pro1.  It doesn’t look like a cheap aftermarket part nor does it feel like one at all.  The EP-7S feels exactly how it looks in the photos.  It’s an extremely well-made, solid piece of brass that matches perfectly with the Fuji X-Pro1.  It slides into the hot shoe surprisingly very smoothly, and it’s an absolutely perfect fit.  It’s tight but in no way does it feel like it doesn’t belong in there.  The EP-7S also has two silicone rubber inserts on the inner part of it that provide stable contact with the camera, and protects the camera from marks and scratches.

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↑ The Thumbs Up EP-7S comes is packaged very nicely, and it comes with a charm.

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↑ Here’s a top view of the EP-7S.

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↑ Here is the bottom view of the EP-7S.

Match Technical Thumbs Up EP-7S Feel:

In terms of shooting with it, the EP-7S feels fantastic.  I never had a problem with how the Fuji X-Pro1 feels without the EP-7S but seriously, I was really surprised at how comfortable the camera was with the Thumbs Up thumb rest.  I was afraid that the Ep-7S would block some of the buttons and functions of my X-Pro1 but on the contrary, it still offers me full access to my buttons, and it actually helps by preventing me from moving the sometimes annoying EV dial by accident.  Also, the single most important reason why I would buy an EP-7S for my X-Pro1 is that it prevents me from accidentally pushing a lot of the buttons on the back of my camera.  In fact, it does a really good job of that.  I love the Fuji X Series but sometimes the buttons on the back of both my X-E1 and X-Pro1 just get in my way.  The Ep-7S prevents me from applying too much pressure with my palm, and therefore, prevents me from hitting some of those buttons when I’m shooting.

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↑ Here is a top view of the X-Pro1 with the Thumbs Up EP-7S attached.

EP-7S isn’t just a simple thumb rest; it really is perfectly contoured to your thumb.  One thing that I like is that Match Technical realized that your thumb won’t be in a completely vertical position when holding your camera, so if you look closely, the thumb part on the EP-7S is actually slightly indented a bit more on the bottom part to better fit your angled thumb.  I hope that makes sense ;)

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↑ The EP-7S is contoured to your thumb perfectly, and it doesn’t block any of the buttons on the back of the X-Pro1.

The only issues that I have with the EP-7S aren’t major.  The first is obvious; by using the hot shoe for the EP-7S, you can’t use a flash.  For some, this may not be a problem because there are a lot of people out there who use their Fujis without a flash. I’ve been using a flash a lot more recently, so it is a bit of an issue for me.  But again, I could always just simply slide the EP-7S out whenever I use a flash.  The other issue that I have with the EP-7S is that it’s a bit harder to adjust the shutter speed dial.  But if you leave your shutter speed dial on “A”, then it really doesn’t matter.

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↑ The Thumbs Up EP-7S helps prevent accidental movement of the EV dial but it makes adjusting the shutter speed dial a bit more difficult.

Match Technical Thumbs Up EP-7S Verdict:

Overall, my time with the Thumbs Up EP-7S surprised me in two ways:  One way is how it seamlessly integrates itself into my X-Pro1, and the other way in how surprisingly comfortable it makes my X-Pro1 feel.  For those who do not think they need one of these thumb rests, I can completely relate with that; the Fuji X-Pro1 is completely comfortable to hold without any grip because it’s so light, and I think it’s designed is pretty good ergonomically.  But after I tried the Thumbs Up, my opinion changed because I really liked how it felt with my X-Pro1.  The EP-7S makes one handed use much easier, and as I said before, it definitely helps prevent me from pushing some of those buttons on the back of my camera.  The price for one of these is around $118 but I think it’s totally worth it because of the OEM-like build, and because it really can offer significantly better support.  Shooting your camera vertically is drastically improved, hitting buttons by accident is lessened significantly, and the overall feel of the camera is more comfortable.  You end up getting all of these pros with really not many cons.  Plus, the EP-7S isn’t like some of those accessories that just get in the way rather than help you or that improve the ergonomics; on the contrary, it actually helps a lot while also looking great on your camera.  Who can argue with that? ;)

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Julius Moosbrugger July 23, 2013 at 6:39 am

I also use the original thumbs up for my X-Pro 1 and after 3 months of use i almost can not imagine to work without this little piece od metal. It gives a feeling of security when i hold my x-pro with one hand only, especially if the stap is clicked off (i normally do that, if i use a tripod).
Must have!

Stefan Claes July 23, 2013 at 8:11 am

… and specially if you use heavy tele lenses like Leica R Telyt or Leica Elmarit-R. Must have!

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 8:24 am

Hi Stefan,

Great point and thanks for commenting!

Take care!

Patrick

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 8:31 am

Hi Julius,

Thanks for leaving a comment! I’ve never used one of these before but I might have to get one soon. My camera really does feel so much more secure than before. What a great little invention!

All the best!

Patrick

Slinky July 23, 2013 at 10:46 am

Thumbs up ! to your report.
I have had this little jewel on my camera since day one. I also have the extra Fuji grip on my XP-1 which really makes everything feel nice and steady while shooting hand held.
Great combo.
Thanks again!

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 12:15 pm

Hi Slinky,

Thank you for taking the time out to read my review! This is the first time I really tried the Thumbs up for a long period of time, and i love it. It’s amazing how such a small device can make such a huge difference. You sound like you have a really great setup! I used the grip before, and I loved it. Both the grip and the Thumbs Up offer such good handling alone…combining them together must be awesome. Thanks for visiting!

All the best!

Patrick

gfahey July 23, 2013 at 1:13 pm

I give up. The link to Bergen County Camera works but, try and find this product there. I’ve entered “EP-7S”, “Thumbs Up”, “Fuji” etc in the search field. I see this product nowhere on the site. Probably a nice product but a direct link to purchase it might be helpful. Just sayin’…..

pinkopunko July 23, 2013 at 1:44 pm

“The other issue that I have with the EP-7S is that it’s (a bit….!!!!!) harder to adjust the shutter speed dial.
A BIT???? there is no space at all

But if you leave your shutter speed dial on “A”, then it really doesn’t matter.”
THIS IS A NONSENSE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

paul presnail July 23, 2013 at 2:39 pm

I tried it with much anticipation, but found that using the device put too much strain on my thumb having it extended as it was. Other than that, the build was very meticulous and the company was good about accepting my return.

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Try giving them a call and ask for Bob. They’re a bit old school, so they’re more into personal service than e-commerce. Here is the number (201)-871-4113. If you don’t want to do that, I think Popflash photo has it on their webpage.

Take care,

Patrick

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 3:14 pm

Hi Paul,

Thanks for your comment. Sorry to hear that but glad the company did the right thing, and let you return it with no trouble.

All the best,

Patrick

inthedarkroom July 23, 2013 at 3:58 pm

At last! A really useful gizmo for under $500 !! Your review spelled out exactly what I wanted to know; keep them coming.

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 3:59 pm

inthedarkroom,

Thanks for your comment! I appreciate you taking the time out to read it!

Take care,

Patrick

Patrick July 23, 2013 at 4:22 pm

I say a “bit” because it’s not impossible to adjust it. You can still access the edge of the shutter speed dial from the front of the camera. I say, “But if…then it really doesn’t matter” because those who choose to use the aperture priority function, do not always need to access the shutter control ring. I hope this clarifies the issue.

All the best,

Patrick

Markus Worsdorfer July 24, 2013 at 6:07 am

Great review.
Been using the EP-9S on my X-E1 for a couple of month now and it is without a doubt one of the nicest accessories around. Match technical gets my Thumbs Up ;-)

Patrick July 24, 2013 at 11:59 am

Hi Markus,

Thanks for taking the time out to read it! Yes, Match Technical is awesome. I definitely would love to get one of these for my X-E1 soon. Thanks for your comment!

Take care,

Patrick

Jeroen July 30, 2013 at 3:04 am

Nice review! Got myself also a repro thumbsup and i love it!

Jorger July 30, 2013 at 11:07 am

Got it for my X-E1. LOVE IT. Still getting used to it as that is not where my thumb likes to reset when Shooting. However, I do like it as extra security when walking around with camera in one hand.
Best,
j

Patrick July 30, 2013 at 9:40 pm

Hi Jeroen,

Thank you very much for your comment! Thanks for visiting my site!

Take care!

Patrick

Patrick July 30, 2013 at 10:12 pm

Hi Jorger,

Great to hear you got it for your X-E1! Yes, I usually hold my camera in one hand instead of putting it around my neck, so that extra security when holding the camera in one hand is great. I’ll probably end up buying one of these for my X-E1 as well. Thanks for visiting!

All the best,

Patrick

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