Mirrorless is The Future For Most, But What’s Up with Fuji?

Where Do I Stand

Most who know me a little would see that I am very pro and encouraging of the move from the DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera to the Mirrorless camera. For most consumers it is the right choice, heck for most professionals it’s beginning to seem like the right choice. I am really happy with the abilities these new camera systems give us. In many ways the Mirrorless systems get out of our ways to allow us to create what we see in our mind’s eye. So to say that I am for it is an understatement. I am 100% on board the Mirrorless train.

On the episode 092 of Cybrcast a monthly podcast I co-host, we had podcaster Mac Sokulski from Shutter Time with Sid & Mac, Antonio M. Rosario from Street Shots Podcast, and Dominick Chiuchiolo who doesn’t have a podcast but you can check out his Flickr. This episode was a discussion inspired by a Tweet by Laurie

Any thoughts on the Fuji X-T20?

Listen in to the episode, but no spoilers (wink), we all seem to be enthusiastic about the Mirrorless offerings, and many of us gave high praise to the Fuji cameras. We are fans of Mirrorless.

Now Lets Get to Fuji’s Latest Release (As of 05/2018)

Fuji today released yet another X series camera. They seem to have an offering at every price point. My question is whether they are causing themselves a disservice by having so many choices? When looking at the lineup I am at a loss of what each level means exactly. The X-T100 is a camera along the lines of the X-T2 and the X-T20. It falls below these two, but offers some things many (especially vloggers) would love. For one the flip out screen is truly something the other cameras were lacking and as someone who wants to create video journals I am really interested in that feature more than anything else. Well I am lying the other bonus for this cameras is also it’s price point. It’s exactly what someone who already shoots another brand would find appealing. It’s a great way to sample what Fuji cameras are all about. A great gateway camera.

Here are a list of current interchangeable lens cameras offered by Fuji as of 05/26/181

  • GFX 50S (Medium Format)

  • X-H1 (Latest top of the line)

  • X-Pro2

  • X-T2

  • X-T20

  • X-T100 (Latest released cameras)

  • X-E3

  • X-A5

  • X-A3

  • X-A10 (This camera seems unavailable in most online shops, but Fuji still lists it as a current camera)

  • X-100F (Added on after post was published, see update note at bottom)

That’s quite a list of cameras that Fuji now has for sale. I don’t know about you, but this seems rather overkill. If I had to choose a camera it would render me useless. I would be analyzing and studying its group for months trying to see what is important to me.

Let’s break the current offering up by professional, semi-professional, and non-professional.

Professional

At the top of this pile, I would put the medium format GFX 50S firmly as the apex of Fuji’s catalog. This camera from all the reviews I have seen creates a beautiful image. Part of me does wish they had aimed for a closer to 645 size from the good old film days. Other digital medium format systems such as that by Phase One are a bit larger and hope that one day Fuji does venture closer to that. Next in line are the X-H1, X-T2, and the X-Pro2. These 3 offer some of the best images for APS-C cameras, but more than anything the handling is what piqued my interest when it came to these cameras. Everything has a dial, who doesn’t love a dial? These three use the X-Trans sensor, which Fuji claims eliminates the need for a low-pass filter. The low-pass filters can soften or give a slight reduction in resolution. The current trend seems to drop this filter and so Fuji has done right by doing so in their top-tier cameras. The GFX 50S does not use the X-Trans sensor made by Fuji, the sensor in that camera is actually made by Sony. With these 4 cameras depending on what you do, you’d be able to create and deliver work in any professional setting. The Fuji X-100F which I added on at the end is a camera using the similar X-Trans sensor and in the eyes of some would be the perfect “professional” camera. I did not originally include it because I didn’t intend to buy one myself. I actually started looking at Fuji’s cameras because I wanted to pick one up for myself. The X-100F in my opinion doesn’t really fit in the “professional” or the “semi-professional” category. I would perhaps place it squarely in the middle of these two categories. I have always seen great things from it, and all the users of this camera really seem to love it.

Semi-Professional

For you semi-professionals I would tell you to choose among the X-T20, X-E3, and maybe the X-T100. I say maybe because perhaps the X-T100 fits better in the non-professional group below. Or maybe it fits in between in a no (wo)man’s land. The other 2 cameras are more like little sisters of the cameras above in the “professional” class. They even have X-trans sensors like the “professional” cameras. Something the X-T100 is lacking, but from the previews I have seen this camera is no slouch and that’s why it can occupy this list as well as the “non-professional” list. These cameras will be able to offer anyone wanting to create art and/or capture everyday images with the right tool for the job. You can’t go wrong with any of these, just choose based on the style of camera you prefer.

Non-Professional

The rest of the cameras all can occupy this space, so that leaves the X-A5, X-A3, and the X-A10. All these “A” cameras seem the fit the bill for the “non-professional” category. Now earlier I did state that Fuji has made the X-T100 which could occupy both this list along with the list above. So I will name the X-T100 as an occupant in this list as well. A little more time in the hands of users will define where the X-T100 truly belongs, but for now the bottom 2 categories is where it’s home will be.

Fuji Could Do With Some Tweaking

Fuji doesn’t need so many cameras. This large group only leads to the photographer having way to many choices and doubting their decision. I look at the professional and wonder would I be happier with the X-H1 or the X-T2. They could cut one of those two and we only had to decide between 2 cameras in the APS-C lineup for a professional camera. Looking at the next group, I would advice Fuji to drop X-T20, this would make it easier to just decide between a “rangefinder” or “SLR” style camera layout. The X-T100 & X-T20 seem to be to close to each other and I think Fuji could do better by just killing their babies rather than having them overcrowd the space. Looking lastly at the “non-professional” cameras, I would recommend that Fuji consolidate the “A” cameras and just choose one, doesn’t really matter which one. Then all the photographer has to do is choose between one of the “A” cameras and the X-T100 (remember the X-T100 resides in two camps). The message for Fuji is to create a more refined lineup which doesn’t leave the photographer confused wondering which product would be the right choice. I might not make this statement if the shops around me actually had a selection to handle, but sadly that is not the case, and as discussed by Mac, Dominick, and Antonio in episode 092 of Cybrcast they also did not have Fuji readily available outside the big camera stores.

Thank you for reading this post, please share this with others, and most importantly engage. I would love to hear your thoughts. Tweet at me, create your own blog post, or record a podcast episode and let me know where to check it out. I would love to hear what you think. If you are a Fuji shooter and understand better what Fuji is about, please set me straight.

Ciao

CWDaly

 

Update: After some discussions on Twitter pertaining this post, it has been brought to my attention by Antonio that I did not include the Fuji X-100F.

Yes. Either way, I think might’ve included the X100 in his article as one of the many Fuji mirrorless options.

He is right, I probably should have included this camera in this look at Fuji’s offerings. It didn’t meet my requirements, which is to be able to change lenses, but others may also appreciate the inclusion of the X-100F. Antonio actually reviewed the camera and I think it is well worth a read. Head on over to his blog to read his review of the Fuji X-100T. I have added the X-100F in the body of the post, have a read and tell me what you think.

 


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