My friend used to shoot on the full-frame Nikon D800 and now he starts to use the Fujifilm X-T2. What is the result?
A significant part of the photographers does not see the “magic picture” of the full-frame image and would be pleased to remain on the APS-C camera, since the cameras of this type are lighter, smaller and cost less. The main reason why experienced amateurs decide on changing the format is 2-2.5 times higher Low-Light ISO level on a full frame, which generates significant growth as an image quality when shooting indoors without flash, sports competitions, children’s morning performances and wild animals, etc.; that is in all those situations where, in a not very good light, a short shutter speed is required, provided by an increase in ISO. Now a new mirrorless model of the Fujifilm X-T2 comes to the market, which today, according to numerous reviews and, based on examples of pictures on the Internet, the Low-Light ISO is approaching 3200 value, like the full-frame cameras by Nikon and Sony. The long-time reader of the website, Pavel Chertalev, recently took this camera for a test drive, after which he immediately sold his full-frame Nikon D800 with all the lenses, and switched to the Fuji X-T2. Let us look at the samples of his pictures, analyze what are the pros and cons of this a professional-level mirrorless APS-C camera, who can buy it, and who, perhaps, should refrain.
The article will be voluminous in terms of the amount of text, because I wanted to post enough analytical information that would help someone to make a choice in favor of a particular model. The content will be as follows:
- Analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of mirrorless cameras in comparison with DSLR.
- Overview of the technical characteristics of the flagship Fujifilm X-T2 and comparison with the parameters of the second top model of this manufacturer the Fujifilm X-Pro2.
- We understand how the X-T2 differs from the younger mirrorless model X-T20.
- Let us try to understand in what cases mirrorless “Fujifilm X” is obviously not worth buying. We compare with the top DX-cameras from Canon and Nikon.
- The conclusion.
Well, before we get to the review, I propose to see what kind of pictures Paul got when he owned the Nikon D800 camera and different lenses. In the comments to the article with a story how was created the Nikon D750, you can read Paul’s first review of the new Fujifilm X-T2 kit with the Fujifilm XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR, the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR and the external flash Nissin i40 (sorry, the link will be provided later).
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1. Pros and cons of DSLRs and mirrorless
When the first mirrorless cameras appeared, the amateurs met them rather gelid, since there were many flaws in them. However, time is running out, manufacturers are investing huge amounts in new developments, in improving their cameras, in advertising campaigns that popularize mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. Let’s try to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of DSLRs and mirrorless to better understand what makes some photographers move to the Fujifilm X-T2.
1.1. Limitations typical for DSLR cameras
DSLRs have the following weaknesses in their design due to the fact they have a mirror:
- Large dimensions: rotating mirror and electronic shutter do not allow greatly reducing the size of the camera.
- Weight: the body of modern DSLRs is made of magnesium alloy or carbon fiber. Nevertheless, the mirror and pentaprism occupy a lot of space, and weigh a lot. In addition, lenses for DSLRs, especially for a full-frame, are larger and heavier than for APS-C.
- The complexity of the design of the mirror and the mechanical shutter: in the case of the DSLR, the mirror then rises and falls to allow the light flux to enter the sensor. All this causes huge problems for designers: mirror’s clap, braking mechanism, limitations on the speed of continuous shooting, movement of air inside the body, causing contamination of the sensor, service complexity troubles.
Read the interview with a team of engineers who took part in the development of the Nikon D750 DSLR camera – it describes the reasons why it was not possible to achieve a fastest shutter speed of 1/8000 in this camera (the link will be provided later).
- There is no way to see in advance how the picture will look: when we look at the optical viewfinder, we cannot understand whether the exposure is sufficient, whether the image will be overexposed or underexposed. We are forced to focus on the prompt of the metering system, but the automation often works incorrectly.
- Problems with focusing accuracy when using phase detectors: phase sensors are used in DSLR, and with the slightest inaccuracy in the assembly of the “body-lens system”, front or back focus appears.
- Price: manufacturers, under the pressure of competitors from mirrorless, are struggling to reduce their costs and make the cost of DSLR cameras optimal. Nevertheless, in the design of the DSLRs, complicated electromechanical components are used, potentially limiting the ability to reduce the cost of producing this type of camera.
1.2. Strengths of mirrorless cameras?
Many experts of the photography market predict that in the near future mirrorless cameras will take the main share in the preferences of beginners and advanced amateur photographers. Already now, we see that both Canon and Nikon with each new model cannot surprise with something new: the revolution does not happen – well, they implemented Wi-Fi and GPS, increased the buffer capacity… Accuracy and focus speed – at the maximum possible, the processors allow you to shoot HD Video at 60 fps mode.
The mirrorless cameras have great potential for the future, since they are fundamentally devoid of some of the drawbacks that are characteristic of the DSLRs.
- Less size and weight: no mirror and pentaprism inside. Many models are APS-C type, and for this kind of camera, lenses with less weight and dimensions are manufactured.
- Inside there is no mechanism for driving the mirror (in fact, there are two mirrors in the DSLR), so nothing slams, which leads to the following things:
- The opportunity of low sound or soundess shooting.
- No vibrations from the clap of the mirror.
- Less contamination of the sensor, since nothing moves the air.
- Easier to get to the sensor for cleaning.
- There are fewer restrictions for increasing the speed of continuous shooting. Therefore, potentially, mirrorless cameras can shoot faster than 14 fps, which today the Fujifilm X-T2.
- Less components in the design – more reliability and easier maintenance.
- Preview image: looking into the electronic viewfinder or in the tilting screen, you immediately see the picture that will be obtained after pressing the shutter release button: WB, saturation and contrast, highlight clipping, etc.
- There is no problem with the accuracy of focusing due to phase sensors: the latest mirrorless models come with phase-detect autofocus sensors mounted directly into the camera’s sensor. Since the phase sensor is in the same plane as the camera sensor, there are no problems with the front or back focus.
- Price: theoretically, the cost of manufacturing mirrorless cameras is lower, since there is no need for precise mechanics (there is no a mirror), and fewer components in the design. However, Sony, Olympus and Fujifilm are forced to invest huge amounts in improving the systems of autofocus, EVF and other technologies, as well as spend money on advertising, overcoming the inertia and mistrust of photographers. Therefore, now the cost of mirrorless is higher than that of DSLRs. Nevertheless, in the future, it definitely has reserves for reduction.
- Electronic viewfinder (EVF): experts argue that this component is the greatest competitive advantage of mirrorless, and with its help they will break out, although now EVF is not as good as it could be.
- Overlaying information: when we look at the optical viewfinder (OVF) of the DSLR, we see a small amount of data. However, their volume is limited. At the same time in EVF you can lay out much more information: from the histogram to the “focus picking.”
- Preview of the photo: everything that is displayed on the screen in LiveView mode can be displayed on the EVF, which allows the photographer to check the photo without taking his eyes off the viewfinder.
- Image Viewer: you saw how professional video professionals take pictures on a DSLR in a separate article – to view a picture on an LCD screen on a sunny day you need to buy a special cover. With EVF you can’t worry about the bright external light.
- Focus Peaking: readers of the blog repeatedly gave a link to a video showing the execution of “Focus Picking” (tinting the color of sharp areas of the image) on the display of the Sony MILCs. However, the same thing can be deduced in EVF, which is impossible in the OVF.
- Full coverage of the viewfinder: usually in the mirrors in the OVF is lost about 5% of the picture, in the EVF can be shown up to 100%.
- A much brighter display: how does it focus in the twilight or in the dark through the optical viewfinder? We do not see anything. In cameras with EVF you can turn on the “normal mode”, and visibility will be as in daytime.
- Digital zooming: when I take pictures of landscapes in LiveView mode on a Samyang 14mm f/2.8 lens, I click the zoom button to enlarge the picture to 100%. It is very convenient to focus manually! So, in the mirrorless, this function can be implemented into the electronic viewfinder, which cannot be done with the OVF.
- Tracking the face and the eyes. Since the EVF shows what the real picture will look like, you can add a special analysis of the data and the camera will track the person, or even focus on the eye closest to the lens.
- Potentially unlimited number of focus points: in the article with interviews of Nikon D750 developers, we listened to the opinion of one of the engineers above, which explained why it is impossible to expand the AF point area in the viewfinder. In the mirrorless cameras phase detectors are located directly on the sensor, contrast ones can be placed anywhere.
- The tracking system for the subject: now in some DSLR appeared the mode of 3D-tracking, but it does not work very well. Given the location right in the sensor of the points of autofocus, there is a possibility that in the near future mirrorless cameras will surpass the DSLR in accuracy of this function, since the information is read directly from the sensor.
- Risk of eye damage: In the instruction manual for any DSLR you can read a warning about the danger of damage to the retina if you eye at the sun through the OVF. In the case of EVF there is no such danger.
1.3. Mirrorless cameras limits
The advantages of mirrorless cameras, which are listed above, are for an ideal world. However, today, there are a number of unresolved technological problems specific to this type of camera (Fujifilm X-T2 users claim that some of them are no longer relevant in this new model).
- Delay in displaying images in EVF: only the latest versions of mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras (MILC) can boast a more or less normally working electronic viewfinder. Early models caused complaints from amateur photographers.
- Continuous autofocus and tracking of the subject: above we said that, potentially, mirrorless cameras in the near future will outpace DSLR by the speed and accuracy of focusing in tracking mode. However, to date, when shooting birds on the fly or shooting sports, DSLR cameras bypass their competitors.
- Battery life: due to the need to power the EVF, which is constantly on, the average number of frames that can be shot on a single charge is around 300 shots. In DSLR cameras this number is 1000 or more. Maybe this is not a big problem (for Nikon D5100 I got 450 photos with one charge, and I had enough), and you can buy an extra battery, but it costs money and the weight of the camera bag.
- Colored spots: due to the short end of the lenses for the APS-C mirrorless cameras, the light reflects from the sensor to the rear lens and back, so when you take pictures, where the sun is present in the frame, there may be colored spots. Technologically, this problem is unsolvable.
- Highly contrasting picture in EVF: most electronic viewfinders have the same contrast as TV screens – lots of black and light, and few halftones. Not a problem, but a nuance.
Despite the large number of positive sides, in general, mirrorless cameras lose today. There are also technical issues, still unsettled, and the difficulties of choice. An owner of a DSLR camera can easily find on the market a huge number of used lenses, suitable for his tasks. Find non-native lenses, flashes, radio synchronizers and other accessories for DSLR is much easier, and the price is likely to be lower than for the mirrorless cameras.
In occasion of “it is easy to find in the market second hand lenses”, probably, I got excited. When I was looking for the Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8G for my cropped Nikon D5100, I was waiting during 2 months, while there will appear a single copy in Ekaterinburg. For a full frame Nikon D610 the Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 zoom lens could not be found, I took a new one. On December 2016, I decided to take a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G and a teleconverter TC-14E II for a future safari trip in India. In Ekaterinburg did not have it, but Chelyabinsk, Tyumen and Perm had one piece only. For 3 million people there are only 3 used lenses! I had not found already used extender that is why I had to go to Moscow (1800 km from my home). As a result, the TC-14E II cost was 50% cheaper than the new one. Now look how much in the market offers for used telephoto zoom Fujifilm XF 50-140mm f/2.8, and at what price they are offered…
Nevertheless, mirrorless cameras are aggressively fighting for a place in the sun. Until recently, the choice of lenses was not wide, there was no flash, but today the situation has become much better. Moreover, more and more owners of large and heavy DSLR cameras switch to light and technological compact mirrorless cameras.
2. Overview of the compact mirrorless camera Fujifilm X-T2
The Fujifilm X-T2 mirrorless camera, announced on July 7, 2016, is the successor of Fujifilm X-T1, but it has a higher resolution, an improved autofocus system and is excellent for a camera with a body-like DSLR design with video recording capabilities. Like another top model the Fujifilm X-Pro2, the X-T2 is equipped with the same 24.3-megapixel sensor X-Trans CMOS III.
The body of camera is almost completely made of magnesium alloy and has protection from splashes. A high degree of resistance to dust and moisture is achieved through a special seal in the 63 points of the Fuji X-T2. The absence of a low-pass filter in front of the sensor allowed Fuji to declare the highest image clarity among FujiFilm X series cameras.
The camera comes with a rechargeable Li-ion battery NP-W126S, a BC-W126 battery charger and a EF-X8 flash (guide number 11 @ ISO 200), a bayonet cover, a shoulder strap, a belt clip, a hot shoe cover and a compartment fastening the battery handle, the cover of the synchronization socket and the user’s manual.
For the Fuji X cameras, the standard KIT lens is the Fujinon XC16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OIS II. I had an opinion that Fuji does not make bad lenses – and this model gives an excellent picture. Examples of pictures from Fuji XC16-50 can be seen in the article with a comparative review of Nikon D5100 vs Fujifilm X-M1.
However, experienced photographers know that the image is affected by both the quality of the lens glass and the ability to open at maximum aperture, thereby allowing the ISO to be reduced when shooting. Therefore, buyers of previous models of the top Fuji X-T1 or the Fuji X-Pro1, often in the KIT took Fujinon XF18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS. Well, Paul took the most versatile travel zoom, although it is quite heavy and bulky: the Fujinon XF16-55mm F/2.8 R LM WR.
The owner of the X-T2 has closed the range of long focal lengths by purchasing a universal the Fujinon XF 50-140mm F/2.8 R LM OIS WR that has a field of view on a APS-C similar to a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G or a telephoto lens Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L on the full frame.
Whatever fast lens do you have, it is impossible to shoot high quality photos indoors without an external flash, and especially when it comes to dynamic scenes. Therefore, immediately with the above optics, Nissin i40 flash was purchased.
2.1. Who is the potential owner of the Fujifilm X-T2
The flagship models FujiFilm X series are becoming more popular among professional photographers and photojournalists, and the Fuji X-T2 has all the functionality necessary for such users. It is also suitable for advanced amateurs who want to take advantage of the mirrorless APS-C format camera with both the standard settings for photography and 4K video support.
The choice between the X-T2 and the X-Pro2 models (having the same an APS-C sensors and processor) will be determined by what version of the body you like more and whether you need 4K-video, which can shoot only with the X-T2. The table below compares the capabilities of the X-T2, the X-T1 and the X-Pro2.
|Body type||DSLR like||Classic design|
|Resolution||24.3 MP||16.3 MP||24.3 MP|
|Processor||X Processor Pro||EXR Processor II||X Processor Pro|
|Max image dimension||6000 x 4000||4896 x 3264||6000 x 4000|
|Max video resolution||3840 x 2160 px||1920 x 1087 px|
|Natural ISO range||ISO 200-12800||ISO 200-6400||ISO 200-12800|
|Extended ISO range||ISO 100-51200|
|Maximum continuous shooting speed||14 fps with electronic shutter; 11 fps with battery handle, 8 fps in autofocus mode||8 fps in autofocus mode|
|Hybrid autofocus system||325 point (169 phase sensors)||49 points||273 points (169 with phase sensors)|
|Memory Cards||Two SD / SDHC / SDXC slots, compatible with UHS-I / UHS-11||1 SD / SDHC / SDXC slot compatible with UHS-I / UHS-11||Two SD / SDHC / SDXC, UHS-I, slot 1 slot compatible with UHS-11|
|Display||Tilting display (in two planes (horizontally and vertically)) 1’040’000 dots||Vertical inclination
|Viewfinder||Electronic 2’360’000 points using OLED technology, 0.77x magnification, 100% coverage, viewpoint – about 23mm||Hybrid optical / electronic, 2’360’000 OLED points, 0.6x magnification, 92% coverage, 16mm point of view|
|USB Interface||USB 3.0||USB 2.0|
|Battery / capacity||NP-W126S / 340 pictures / charge||NP-W126 / 350 pictures / charge|
|Dimensions||132.5 x 91.8 x 49.2 mm||129.0 x 89.8 x 46.7 mm||140.5 x 82.8 x 45.9 mm|
|Weight (with battery)||507 grams||440 grams||495 grams|
Photographers involved in night photography, for sure, like one of the features of the design of the camera: two settings for long exposures. Since the scale on the disc of the shutter speed is limited to 1 second, for a longer exposure, use the “T” or “B” mode.
In either case, you must install the camera on a tripod to avoid blurring the image. It is also recommended to use the remote control – optional Fujifilm RR-90 remote shutter release (connected via a micro USB connector) or use a standard cable connected to the camera’s shutter button.
When using the “T” (shutter priority) mode, the shutter release button must be kept for the duration of the exposure. During this entire period, the countdown timer is displayed. As soon as the button is released, a picture is taken.
When setting the “B” (bulb) mode, you must manually press the shutter release button at the beginning and at the end of the exposure. The display also shows the time from the beginning of exposure. When the f-number is selected on the disc, the shutter speed is set to 30 seconds. Otherwise, the shutter remains open for up to 60 minutes while the shutter release button remains pressed.
2.2. Design and ergonomics of the mirrorless camera Fujifilm X-T2
The X-T2 is bigger and heavier than its predecessor, it’s different in design and internal improvements. Outside, the X-T2 is reminiscent of the X-T1 cast-protected body made of magnesium and the mass of control discs. The grip handle is slightly larger and there is a massive thumb support on the rear panel for a more convenient and reliable camera placement in the hand.
The lens bayonet occupies most part of the front panel, and the control buttons are dispersed around. These include the lens release button at the bottom of the front panel next to the bayonet, the second function button (Fn2) between it and AF-assist/timer lamp, the focus mode switch on the opposite side of the lens mount from the shutter button and the flash sync connector (with a removable plug) a little higher.
The first control dial is located at the bottom of the top panel, just below the combined camera shutter release/on/off button. The control discs on the top panel are the same as those of the Fuji X-T1, with the ISO sensitivity/shooting mode dial located to the left of the viewfinder/external flash connector, and the shutter speed and the exposure compensation control dial to the right another function button (Fn1).
Unlike its predecessor, the Fujifilm X-T2 does not have a separate button for video recording. This option is added to the shooting mode selection disc as a separate video recording status. When this option is selected, video recording starts and stops by pressing the shutter release button.
For greater convenience, Fuji made a couple of small but significant changes to the controls on the top panel. Firstly, the ISO control dial and the combined shutter speed dial, and the exposure meter have become larger and slightly higher. The latter was also moved forward to avoid accidental clicking. In the unlocked state, all three drives rotate with a more visible click, so that it’s easier to control the settings used. If you select “A” mode, the shutter speed dial is not automatically locked.
The screen on the rear panel is the same as that of the Fuji X-T1: with a resolution of 1.04 million pixels and the ability to tilt to the horizontal position and down about 45 degrees – it’s convenient to shoot while holding the camera over your head. It can also be tilted in two directions when the camera is held vertically (new function), but the screen is still not touch-sensitive.
Also, without changes (except for the larger rubber eyecup), there was an electronic viewfinder with a resolution of 2.36 million points and a high refresh rate of 100 fps, and a display delay time of 0.005 seconds. The viewfinder’s lag was halved, allowing for continuous shooting in LiveView mode (when viewed on the screen) at speeds of up to 5 fps.
Taking out the viewpoint by 23 mm facilitates the use of the viewfinder for photographers who wear glasses and a 0.77-fold increase in clarity of the image. Dioptric correction in the range from -4 to +2 m-1 will be enough for most amateur photographers.
Most of the controls to the right of the monitor remain the same, although the zoom button in the Focus Assist point on the Fujifilm X-T1 has been replaced with the “Q” button just above, used to call up the quick menu. Its position was taken by the position joystick, similar to that found in the model Fujifilm X-Pro2. It can be used to change the AF point on the screen or to navigate the camera menu. When pressed, you can change the size of the focus area by rotating the control dials on the front or rear panel. According to the users, just appearance of this joystick is a serious reason for buying the X-T2, as the convenience of choosing AF points has increased many times.
The guide bars of the selection panel are located slightly higher and more convenient when pressed. Finally, the control dials on the front and rear panels, like the Fujifilm X-Pro2, can be pressed to toggle between the aperture and exposure compensation settings, magnifying the selected AF area and selecting the manual focus mode.
Now, instead of one memory card slot, there are two SD card slots on the right side panel that are compatible with UHS II class 3 high-speed cards recommended for video recording. The memory card compartment cover is made of hard plastic, has a switch with a lock.
On the opposite side panel are various interface ports. From the top down, there is a 3.5 mm microphone jack, a micro USB 3.0 connector, a micro HDMI port and a remote-release socket. The cover of this compartment is also made of hard plastic, but there is no switch with a lock on it.
On the bottom panel there is a battery compartment, a metal tripod socket (in line with the optical axis of the lens) and a rubberized connector for connection of the Fujifilm VPB-XT2 booster. This accessory was specially designed for the X-T2 and can accommodate two additional batteries, the capacity of which is enough for 1000 shots (if three batteries are installed, including 1 in the camera itself). The camera is able to display the charge level of each battery individually, and can be charged in the battery grip through the supplied power supply.
On the booster grip are also located controls that allow you to operate the camera in an upright position. Here you will find a duplicate shutter release button, a quick menu button, function buttons, as well as front and rear control dials, autofocus and exposure lock buttons, focus control joystick. Additionally there is a 3.5 mm headphone jack on the grip that is not exist on the camera.
2.3. What’s new in the Fujifilm X-T2 comparing to the Fujifilm X-T1 and the X-Pro2
In addition to the sensor with a higher resolution, compared to the X-Pro2, the main improvements of the X-T2 are an improved autofocus system, the ability to record 4K-video and support for a faster USB 3.0 interface. These functions distinguish the X-T2 from the X-Pro2, which has the same sensor and processor.
Hybrid phase-contrast autofocus system in the X-T2 has significantly more focus points in comparison with the predecessor the X-T1. When the “Focus area” option is selected in the camera menu, a series of small squares of 13×7 (91 points in total) are displayed on the screen, occupying approximately 65% of the frame. In the central sector of 7×7 there are phase focusing points, occupying almost 40% of the frame.
The further actions depend on the selected AF mode. If you select the “AF area” setting, then you can choose between zones of 3×3, 5×5 or 7×7 pixels within a 25×13 pixel area that is displayed when the joystick is pressed. When you select “Spot AF”, you can select any of the 325 points with the joystick.
All 325 points are used in the “Wide/Tracking” mode, combining the Wide (single-frame AF) mode with Tracking (continuous auto focus). With AF-S, the control algorithms automatically identify and track the area in focus within the point array. With AF-C, the camera continuously monitors the subject while holding it in the center of the frame.
Increasing the retention and tracking speed allowed Fujifilm to assert that the camera can focus in 0.06 seconds. In addition, there are now five AF pre-settings that allow users to determine how the camera responds to the speed and/or direction of the subject’s movement in the frame, and where the camera sets the priority of the focus within the frame. Users can also create and store up to six individual settings, adjusting tracking sensitivity and tracking speed, and switching parameters for the focus area.
Like the Fujifilm X-Pro2, the Fujifilm X-T2 also has a face detection and eye tracking function that allows the photographer to choose how to focus on the right, left, or nearest to the camera eye. Like the AF-S and AF-C modes, manual focus is turned on with the switch on the front of the camera, and photographers can take advantage of various ways of focusing.
The distance scale is displayed along the bottom edge of the screen (both in the viewfinder and on the display), while the white line shows the focus indicator, and the blue line shows the depth of field, each of which changes as the focus and aperture are adjusted. If “Focus checking” is set to “On”, pressing the rear control dial increases the selected area by 2.5 or 6 times.
If you continue to press the disc, the camera will switch to the “Digital Image Sharing” mode, which shows a double image in the center of the frame. Rotating the focus ring allows you to combine these images for accurate manual focus. If you continue to press the disc, the display will switch to the “Focus Peaking” mode, which selects the focused areas. You can select a white, red or blue outline and set the degree of selection to low or high.
The ability to record 4K-video allocates the Fujifilm X-T2 among others; this is the first camera of Fuji X series with such functionality and having a UHD user level resolution of 4K 3840×2160 @ 30/25/24 fps. For recording 4K-video, high-speed UHS class 3 memory cards are recommended and the recording time is limited to 10 minutes. Using the battery grip VPB-XT2 increases the time of continuous video recording up to 30 minutes.
The Fujifilm X-T2 camera can record Full HD video at 50 or 25fps and HD video (1280×720) at a frame rate of up to 50fps for the PAL system. In the first case, the continuous recording time is limited to 15 minutes, in the second – 29 minutes. The video is saved in MOV format with compression of MPEG-4 AVC / H.264 and linear PCM stereo sound 48 kHz. The table below shows all the options available for PAL and NTSC systems.
|Video Type||Frame Size||Frame Rate||Maximum Recording Time per 8GB / 16GB Card, Minutes|
|UHD 4K 2160/29.9P||3840 x 2160 (4K)||29.97 fps||9/20|
|UHD 4K 2160/25P||25 fps|
|UHD 4K 2160/24P||24 fps|
|UHD 4K/23.98P||23.98 fps|
|Full HD 1080/59.94P||1920 x 1080 (Full HD)||59.95 fps||9/20|
|Full HD 1080/50P||50 fps|
|Full HD 1080/29.97P||29.97 fps|
|Full HD 1080/25P||25 fps|
|Full HD 1080/24P||24 fps|
|Full HD 1080/23.98P||23.98 fps|
|HD 720/59.94P||1280 x 720 (HD)||59.95 fps||19/30|
|HD 720/50P||50 fps|
|HD 720/29.97P||29.97 fps|
|HD 720/25P||25 fps|
|HD 720/24P||24 fps|
|HD 720/23.98P||23.98 fps|
The video recorded in 4K format has a bitrate of 100Mbps; the frame is cropped in width with APS-C of 1.17. For Full HD video, the bitrate is the same, and for HD it is reduced to 50 Mbps. Frames in the format Full HD and HD are cut vertically only to get a 16: 9 aspect ratio.
The video mode is set using the selector dial, and you can shoot video in P, A, S and M. During video recording, the indicator light is on, you can adjust the exposure settings, enter exposure compensation within +/- 2EV and zoom in on the lens.
There are two ways to focus: “multi” (with automatic AF point selection) or “zone” (focus on the selected area).
You can also choose where to record video files: to a memory card or to an attached HDMI recorder (or other device that supports 4K). When a recording device is connected to the camera and a memory card is selected, the video will be written to the card in 4K resolution, and to an HDMI device in Full HD format.
When the HDMI (F-Log) option is selected, 4K video is recorded to the HDMI device without writing to the card. To create a video material suitable for post-processing, a lower gamma value and a color space with a wide coverage are used. The minimum sensitivity is set to ISO 800.
An example of shooting a video on Fujifilm X-T2 camera in 4K format.
The new shutter mechanism shortened the minimum shutter speed to 1/8000, and the flash sync speed was shorten to 1/250 seconds when using a mechanical shutter. The maximum speed of the electronic shutter remains the same as that of the Fujifilm X-T1, and is 1/32000 seconds. Continuous shooting is supported at speeds of up to 8 fps in the Continuous High burst mode or 11 fps when using the battery grip. When the electronic shutter is selected, the continuous shooting speed is up to 14 fps.
The capacity of the buffer memory depends on the frame rate, the image format and the file size. At 8 frames per second, the buffer memory can hold up to 83 high resolution JPEG pictures, 33 files in RAW format with lossless compression or 27 RAW without compression. At a rate of 14 frames per second, the buffer size is 42, 28 and 25 frames, respectively.
The Fujifilm X-T2 has an interval timer for slow motion shooting with the ability to select the interval between frames from 1 second to 24 hours, as far as the battery capacity and memory card capacity allow. A multi-exposure (although the overlay is limited to two frames) is available through the mode selection dial, as well as panoramic shooting and bracketing settings.
Wi-Fi is implemented similarly to the Fujifilm X-Pro2 model. Wireless communication using NFC technology is not supported.
Photo 25. Testing the Fujifilm X-T2 + the Fujinon 16-55/2,8 in the street. 1/400, 7.1, 400, 16.
2.4. Additional accessories for the Fuji X-T2
The Fujifilm X-T2 similar to the Fujifilm X-T1 is sold with an external flash Fujifilm EF-X8, connected via a hot shoe. The flash is small and not very powerful, with a guide number of 6.1 (at ISO 100) and weighs only 41 grams. Its power is enough to illuminate closely located objects, and it can be used as a master flash in studio photography. Synchronization on the front and rear curtain is supported. In addition, you can connect to the camera more powerful flashes from Fuji and other manufacturers.
Optional the Fujifilm VPB-XT2 battery grip has been specially developed for the Fujifilm X-T2 and can be used as additional power supply to the camera battery or to facilitate shooting when the camera is turned to the vertical position. When installing two fully charged batteries, a continuous shooting rate of 14 fps is available, and the maximum frame rate when using a mechanical shutter is increased to 11 fps. The delay time for the shutter release was reduced from 50 to 45 milliseconds.
Using the Fujifilm VPB-XT2 battery grip adds 273 grams to the weight of the camera, and the installation of batteries in it – up to an additional 369 grams, which is approximately 60% of the body weight with the battery installed. If you really need the extra power and performance provided by the battery pack, then such extra weight justifies itself.
The battery grip set includes 2 batteries, AC adapter (AC-9VS) and an extension cable for headphones. You can charge both batteries directly in the grip by connecting the power supply.
Choosing the Fujifilm X-T2, you have to think what kind of optics you need. Reflections on what the f/2.8 fast lens is superior to the slower version of f/4.0.
In the arsenal of any advanced amateur photographer, there is a “holy trinity”: a kit lens, a wide-angle lens and telephoto lens. Why do I need a wide-angle lens and telephoto lens, how to shoot long-focus optics.
3. The main differences between the Fujifilm X-T2 and the Fujifilm X-T20
The Fujifilm X-T2 is at the top of the nomenclature of mirrorless cameras Fuji X. To meet the needs of amateurs who are not ready to pay for all the advantages of the top X-T2, a simplified version of the Fujifilm X-T20 is offered, which has much in common with its older sister: the newest 24MP APS-C sensor APS-C X-Trans III, an advanced system of hybrid autofocus with adjustable AF modes, video in 4K and 30 fps. But there are also differences that I propose to consider more carefully.
3.1. Housing, buttons and control dials
In the first place, comparing the Fuji X-T2 vs the Fuji X-T20, we see that the first one has large dimensions and weight: 132.5 mm x 91.8 mm x 49.2 mm vs 118.4 mm x 82.8 mm x 41.4 mm; 507 g vs 383 g). Secondly, in the amateur X-T20 there is no dust and moisture protection.
If you look at the top panel of both bodies, you can see that both have control disks, but the implementation scheme is slightly different. On mirrorless X-T2 wheels are responsible for setting ISO, shutter speed and exposure compensation. Conveniently, the first two are doubled so that the bottom drive can control several functions: for ISO – forced mode, bracketing, video, panorama, fast series, multi-exposure, advanced filter; and the exposure metering mode for the corresponding exposure wheel.
Unlike the X-T2, the Fuji X-T20 can only adjust the shutter speed, exposure compensation and modes: forced, bracketing, video, panorama, fast series, multi-exposure, advanced filter using discs.
The younger camera is positioned as an amateur camera, so it is possible to switch the X-T20 to fully automatic shooting mode, and there is also a built-in flash.
The professional model has a slot for two SD cards, which supports the newest format of UHS-II, while in the X-T20 slot for one card and only for UHS-I.
3.2. Tilting display
The Fujifilm X-T20 has a tilting LCD screen that can deflect 90 degrees and rotate 45 degrees down. This is the second model in the Fujifilm X line, in which the touch screen (the first is Fujifilm X-A3), allowing you to release the shutter and select the focus point by touching. In the preview mode, you can scroll through the images or magnify them by sliding your finger across the glass.
Feature the Fujifilm X-T2 (and the medium format camera Fujifilm GFX 50S) – a Medium Format Mirrorless Camera display that can rotate in three axes: except for up and down, it reclines 45 degrees to the side, which is convenient when shooting in a vertical position of the case. Unlike the X-T20, the display in the pro model is not touch-sensitive.
3.3. Electronic viewfinder (EVF)
Both models have a built-in LCD viewfinder with a resolution of 2.36 megapixels, located in the center of the case. But in the professional Fujifilm X-T2 one is bigger (0.5 “vs 0.39”) and has the best increase (0.77x vs 0.62x).
In addition, in the forced mode (when connecting the battery pack), the frame rate in Fuji X-T2’s viewfinder can be increased from 60 to 100 fps. I did not find it exactly, but it seems like, at the X-T20 this parameter is limited to 60 fps, as there is no battery handle for this model.
3.4. Maximum speed of mechanical shutter
In both models there is a high-speed electronic shutter, which can be shot with a shutter speed of 1/32’000 seconds, and at the same time soundlessly. In the comments to the comparative survey of the amateur mirrorless Fujifilm X-M1 camera, I gave examples of cases where an electronic shutter can’t be used, instead of it, a mechanical one is included. So, if you compare the X-T2 and the X-T20, the difference is: 1/8000 vs 1/4000 seconds. In addition, the synchronization speed of the flash is also different: 1/250 versus 1/180 seconds.
3.5. Continuous shooting speed and buffer capacity
At first glance, there is no difference between the Fuji X-T2 and the Fuji X-T20 in the speed of continuous shooting: 14 fps in electronic shutter mode or 8 fps in mechanical mode. In LiveView mode there is the speed of 5 fps.
But the advantage of the X-T2 appears if you attach the battery grip (booster): in the mechanical shutter mode, the continuous shooting speed becomes 11 fps. As we recall, there is no possibility to attach the battery pack to the X-T20.
Another difference between these cameras is the different buffer capacity: 27 uncompressed RAWs versus 23, 33 compressed RAFs versus 25, and 83 frames in JPEG versus 62 frames.
3.6. Sixth Custom Autofocus Setting
The X-T20 has the same hybrid AF system as the X-T2, and you can set its settings. They include 5 algorithms for changing the sensitivity. Say the truth, the Fujifilm X-T2 has a 6th mode – a custom preset that does not exist in the X-T20.
3.7. Full sensor reading, gamma correction F-Log Gamma and limitations on video shooting
Both the X-T2 and the X-T20 cameras are currently the only ones in the Fujifilm X line that can write 4K video (UHD 3840 x 2160) at 24, 25 and 30 fps with a bit rate of 100 mbps. Also, both cameras allow you to output an 8-bit 4: 2: 2 4K picture over an HDMI cable.
You can apply the same filters to the video with the simulation of the film as in photography, but only in the X-T2 there is an F-Log gamma correction profile available via HDMI. When recording video, you can set ISO in the range 200-12800, manually adjust all exposure parameters.
When shooting 4K/30fps video, the limit is 10 minutes for both models, but if you put the battery pack on the Fuji X-T2, it will increase to 30 minutes. In the video mode Full HD and 60fps, two models write video for 15 minutes.
The Fujifilm X-T2 model cuts the video to the APS-C factor Kf = 1.17 when shooting at 4K, and X-T20 does not. Apparently, this means that X-T20 can’t perform a full pixel readout, which means that the clarity of the image is worse than that of the flagship.
3.8. Audio Ports
In the amateur model Fujifilm X-T20, the mic input is 2.5 mm, in professional mode – 3.5 mm. Both do not have a headphone jack, but in the battery grip for the X-T2 it is available – you can control the sound when recording video.
3.9. Optional Booster
Several times we noted that for the Fujifilm X-T2 there is offered the Fujifilm VPB-XT2 battery grip, indispensable for sports photography, wild life photography, weddings and 4K video. The booster not only extends the life of a single battery charge, but also significantly improves the convenience of shooting in a vertical position, thanks to additional control elements, and the inclusion of forced mode (extended video recording time, EVF performance, speed and focus accuracy).
For the Fuji X-T20 battery grip does not exist, so the owner can’t improve the parameters of his camera.
For a better perception of the difference in the parameters of the considered mirrorless cameras, it is suggested to look at the comparative table.
|Parameter||Fujifilm X-T2||Fujifilm X-T20|
|Sensor||24MP X-Trans III||24MP X-Trans III|
|EVF, dots, fps||x0.77, 2.36M, 100 fps||x.062, 2.36M, 60 fps|
|Display||3″, 3:2, 1040K, 3-axes, tilting||3″, 3:2, 1040K, 2-axes, tilting|
|Setting AF||5x presets, 1x custom||5x presets|
|Continuous shooting speed, fps||8 fps, buffer for 83 frames JPEG||8 fps, buffer for 83 frames JPEG|
|Shooting in LiveView mode||5 fps, 130ms delay||3 fps, 280ms delay|
|Shooting video||4K 30p F-Log||4K 30p, 10 minutes limit, bitrate 100Mbps|
|Slots for memory cards||Dual UHS II (two slots)||Single UHS I (one slot)|
|Protection against dust and moisture||Yes||No|
4. Should you buy the Fujifilm X-T2 or the Fujifilm X-T20, or even take an DSLR?
On the blog there is an article about which camera best to buy a novice amateur photographer. In the comments to it – a questionnaire, which I ask to fill out, before asking which camera or lens is preferable to choose. Main questions:
1. How much money are you willing to spend?
2. How important are the weight and dimensions of the camera?
3. What subjects will you mainly shoot?
So, suppose that you plan to photograph sports or wild animals, or something else, where you want to use a telephoto lens. In the line of Fujifilm, to date, there is only one Fujinon XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR, its price is 2’200 USD. Third-party manufacturers Tamron and Sigma lenses for Fuji do not produce. For the price of the Fuji X-T2, you will take a full-frame Nikon camera and choose a telephoto lens from several dozen models, both native and third-party manufacturers, with focal lengths of 400, 600 and 800 mm.
The second example: you seriously take a great interest in macro photography. For Fujifilm there are only Fujinon XF 60mm f/2.4 and Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8M Lens. It is clear that in macro photography, autofocus is not particularly needed, and through the adapter it is possible to attach others manufacturers macro lenses (for example, Samyang 100mm f/2.8 ED UMC Macro), but still… For Nikon without wild goose chase you use not only native Nikon 40, 55, 60, 85, 105 and 200 mm, but also Tamron 60, 90, 180 mm, Tokina Macro 100 F2.8 or Sigma 105, 150 mm macro lenses.
Unfortunately, DxOMark does not measure the parameters of the Fujifilm X cameras on the dynamic range, color depth and Low-Lite ISO – you can focus only on the personal perception of the picture. Let’s, for the sake of curiosity, compare the technical characteristics of the Fujifilm X-T2 and the top-end DSLRs of the competitors Canon EOS 7D Mark II and the Nikon D500.
|Parameter||Сanon EOS 7D M2||Nikon D500||Nikon D7200||Fuji X-T2|
|Tilting display||Fixed||Tilting||Fuxed||2 axes|
|Shooting speed||8 fps||10 fps||6 fps||8 fps (14 with EVF)|
|Buffer capacity||103 JPEG 26 RAW||200 JPEG 79 RAW||100 JPEG 18 RAW||
|Minimum exposure time||1/8000||1/8000||1/8000||1/8000 1/32000 эл.затв.|
|Number of card slots||2||2||2||2|
It’s hard for me to compare with the Canon EOS 7D Mark II, because it’s far beyond the parameters of the sensor (dynamic range, color depth and Low-Light ISO), than any APS-C from Nikon, released in the last 5 years. I’m sure that by these parameters the Canon 7D Mark II is not a competitor and Fuji.
Still, we compare for the price of cameras are comparable, for the quality of lenses for APS-C, as described in the review above: Fuji does not make bad lenses. No special technological advantages the Canon EOS 7D Mark II, in my opinion, does not have (continuous shooting, speed and capacity of the buffer, etc.). Thus, I think that an advanced amateur photographer who owns an entry-level Canon EOS camera, dreaming of upgrading to an advanced APS-C, may well choose the professional model Fujifilm X-T2 as an alternative. If the photographer is engaged in special shooting (sports, concerts, wild life photography), you should carefully compare the lens set at your choice and price, test the AF speed on the mirrorless camera.
I forgot to say, when comparing Nikon, Canon and Fuji, to the price of the Fujifilm X-T2 immediately need to add 180 USD (the cost of 3 additional batteries, or 370 USD per battery grip).
It makes no sense to compare the Fuji X-T2 with the professional Nikon D500, since I do not know who is buying D500 – see the comparison with the full frame of the Nikon D610.
Well, if you look at the differences between the Fujifilm X-T2 and the Nikon D7200, which is clearly inferior to the ISO and the weight of the system, taking into account the choice of quality lenses for APS-C , then there is much to think about. Finally, the main puzzle – what to choose: low ISO and the price of the Nikon D7200 or high ISO and the cost of the X-T2?
But I do not see the problem of choosing the Fujifilm X-T2 vs the Fujifilm X-T20. Just open your albums with pictures and count: how much of them are taken in the rain, how often do you “bang away” in series of 50 frames and are you going to buy a battery grip for 370 USD. I am sure that 95% of those photographers who hesitate between the X-T2 and the X-T20 will choose the amateur model.
To make pictures interested spectators, you need a visual series to form a picture story. How to make an interesting picture report that keeps attention.
Most often we view our pictures on a computer, but they look much more effective when they are decorated in a photobook. Tips on how to compile it in the best way.
In today’s review, we talked little about how to learn to take pictures on Fujifilm X-T2. In the article with examples of pictures on the Sony A6000 we discuss how to focus when shooting a portrait and a landscape.
After the impressive examples of X-T2 images, I wanted to test an earlier X-T10 model. Not impressed, because I encountered significant drawbacks when taking and processing pictures.
5. Conclusion to the review of the mirrorless camera Fujifilm X-T2
I did not have the task to agitate for buying the X-T2 or, on the contrary, to dissuade. A careful comparative analysis and examples of photographs presented by Pavel and other owners of these mirrorless ones showed that the camera has, in fact, a lot of positive sides, and there are not many negative points if it is equal to the average photographer. However, if you compare the cost of ownership (body, lens, flash, other accessories) and the breadth of choice, then there are many reasons to focus your attention on other brands. In any case, it’s great that such cameras are on the market: competition grows, which forces manufacturers to think about improving the product and about reducing the price, from which we all win. In addition, special thanks to Pavel Chertalev for the presented interesting pictures with his remarkable Fujifilm X-T2. I wish him only a wonderful images!
Note: all the pictures in this comparative review are taken in RAF format and processed in the native editor Silkypix Developer Studio Pro 8.0 using different color profiles + finishing in Photoshop.
Examples of shooting at a Nikon D5100 APS-C camera and the Nikon 17-55mm f / 2.8G high-speed reportage zoom can be seen in a separate picture lesson.
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Instead of an afterword. While this review was being prepared, photographer Dmitry Kochergin laid out on Youtube a comparative analysis of the images taken on Fuji X-T20 and X-T10, where he compares images to high ISO. The general conclusion, on the parameters of the matrix of the model from each other, practically do not differ, and in its opinion, there can be only two reasons for the novelty’s preference: 1) the speed of the autofocus X-T10 does not satisfy you; 2) you do not like that in the sensor of the previous model only 16 megapixels.
Under the link you can download samples of pictures in RAW format, taken by Dmitry on Fujifilm X-T20 and X-T10. Based on the comparison table X-T2 and X-T1, I conclude that the novelty can be preferred by those photographers who need a faster and more accurate AF, and who do not necessarily need 2 memory card slots.
By the way, a couple of words about D. Kochergin, whose blog I’ve been reading for several years. Wonderful photographer from the South Urals. Look at his work in Contact (account: norcoman74 in LJ) – perhaps you want to go with him to the picture tour. Dmitry organizes picture trips around our regions – come back with cool staff and excellent mood.