We got our new Fujifilm XT2

What makes a great camera?  Is it being small enough to fit in your pocket? large enough to capture every detail? or are you looking for something in between? For each person, the perfect camera is something different. Fuji has recently released a camera, the XT2, that I believe will have many people excited.

In this blog, we will be focusing on the FujiFilm XT2, the latest design in the X series of cameras by Fuji. Don’t let this worry you, though, this won’t be a maths lesson on sensor performance or lens “MTF”. This will be a critique of the camera in real-world use.

Recently we have had the chance to test the FujiFilm XT2 during our photoshoots for both video and photo production. We will go through both the Photo and Video formats separately, as well as some of the features that really stand out.

First of all the XT2 is a beautiful camera, Fuji has managed to blend 83 years of film knowledge and expertise into the X series of cameras and especially the XT2.

Color rendition in this camera is absolutely stunning, Fuji’s color science is truly remarkable.

This camera is very small, a great ‘in-the-pocket’ camera, although without the Optional Power Booster Grip, this camera feels slightly too small for my hand, difficult to hold and unbalanced. when adding the ‘Power Booster Grip’ though it fits in the hand perfectly and feels much more robust.

Mechanical dials are provided for key operation of settings, including the shutter speed, ISO, exposure compensation, drive modes and metering modes. This is a great feature many camera manufacturers have turned away from over the years.

Pullman Danang Beach Resort - Straight out of the camera - Fujifilm Astia Soft Film Simulation

Pullman Danang Beach Resort - Straight out of the camera - Fujifilm Astia Soft Film Simulation


Video

I am overwhelmed with the excellence of this camera’s video capability, for such a small unit it truly exceeds all expectations. the X-T2 is the first Fuji mirrorless camera to offer UHD 4K video recording options. 4K has become an essential part of video production with most clients now requesting 4k.

Starting out with this camera the Menu system can be slightly confusing (maybe from years of using Canon) but once you understand the menus and setup your user buttons the camera becomes unbelievably simple to use. Having said that as with many small cameras, for video at least they become exponentially harder to use as they get smaller, this is the case with the XT2.

  • Pulling focus on the smaller lenses is basically impossible.
  • The screen is very difficult to see in daylight.

I would suggest that this is a fantastic documentary camera, blog camera, B-roll camera but if you are looking for a beautiful filmic image for your short film, promotional video, commercial or music video I would look elsewhere.


Film Simulations

The engineers at Fuji have done an amazing job implementing the Fuji Film simulation color profiles into the XT2. Fuji lacks no experience with Film. So when they implement Film Simulation into a digital camera you know they will do it right.

A big selling point or at least a big marketing point for Fujifilm’s X-Series of cameras is their excellent color reproduction and their film simulation modes. It is true, to an extent, that these Film Simulation Modes are Fujifilm’s version of, let’s say, Canon’s color profiles. In reality, however, while serving a similar function, there is much more to them than that.

These simulations come out of the camera looking absolutely fantastic, better than hours of post processing if you’re looking for a way to cut back on the post production for smaller jobs Fuji’s film simulations are great. Here are some examples:

I would honestly say that many of these film simulations are infact so robust that a hobbiest photographer (whom doesn’t wish to spend hours in post production on every photo) could simply shoot jpeg’s with film simulation to produce stunning results.


Lenses

To put it simply, the lenses are very small and very sharp. Fuji has released a considerably large line-up of lenses for their new X-mount digital cameras, totaling 14 primes and 7 zooms. Made by Fujinon, a sister company to Fujifilm, they have been manufacturing lenses for nearly a century, so you can trust in the pedigree.

Lenses.jpg
  • XF 35mm f2.0
  • XF 50mm f2
  • XF 56mm f1.2
  • XF 90mm f2.0
  • XF 60mm f2.4 Macro
  • XF 80mm f2.8 Macro
  • XF 120mm f2.8 macro
  • XF 14mm f2.8
  • XF 16mm f1.4
  • XF 18mm f2.0
  • XF 23mm f1.4
  • XF 23mm f2
  • XF 27mm f2.8
  • XF 35mm f1.4

Conclusion

A camera is simply a tool to express yourself through photography, it would be a mistake to think that the tool isn’t an important part of the craft. Just as you wouldn’t use a hammer to polish glass, the right camera is essential for the right photo or video.

This is an excellent camera for amateur through to professional. I would say that for a novice photographer, the XT2 may currently be one of the best cameras on the market. Small and easy to use, Film simulation for fantastic out of camera results.

For professionals, it is a fantastic B roll camera something small that fits easily over the shoulder and yet still packs a punch.