Four days and 20 shots with the Fuji XT2. By Steve Huff

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Four days and 20 shots with the Fuji XT2

By Steve Huff

Happy Friday everyone! End of the week and what a day to post a nice, sweet, to the point quick look at my last few days with the Fuji XT2. Yep, this camera has been out for a bit now but I figured it would be better late than never to share my thoughts, even if they are short and sweet and to the point! Some of you may know that I have not reviewed every single Fuji camera myself, as I have not been a 100% solid fan (Maybe 85%) of Fuji for a while. While I have been applauding what they are doing, I just never fell in love with the previous X Trans sensor models that have been released. Something about the cameras like the XPro 2, and others that just never grabbed me fully. While being a fan of the X100 series and the original Xt1 (which I almost bought back then) I was looking forward to trying out the new XT2.

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To me, the XT2 is the model I would choose if I were to buy a Fuji body. It’s controls are top-notch and placed perfectly, the EVF is nice and large, the speed is great and it feels and looks like a real camera, not a computer or modern-day gadget. It has something about it, and the colors it can produce (all Fuji’s can) that have a very appealing draw to it. The Fuji’s blues have always been something I admired, even as far back as the Fuji S5 Pro which is a dog slow camera but one I loved back in the day. Ahhhh, those colors….

Fuji XT2 with 16-55 at f/2.8

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It’s all about that feel..

To me the XT2 feels the best in the hand of all of the Fuji Models, and to me, it is the most responsive and rewarding to shoot with. Some may prefer the longer more square X-Pro series but give me a nice thin and squat design that feels solid, and give me a nice EVF and response with fast AF and some nice IQ and I will be one happy shooter. With this XT2 I sadly only had four days with the camera and ONLY the 16-55 Lens. This means that I was limited as I did not get to test it with the nice primes or other Fuji lenses so take this post as only my thoughts over four days of use with one lens and one lens only, the 18-55 f/2.8 (which is a very nice lens for this camera/system). But I have extensive experience with all cameras, and today my favorite three cameras are my Sony A7RII, Olympus PEN-F (do not have the EM1 II yet), and the Leica SL. I love my Sony for its “do anything” ability. While not the quickest in AF or tech specs by todays standards, that camera has always performed for me but I will admit…the Sony can not create the look of Fuji, or Leica, or Olympus. Each brand, each camera has its own MoJo going on, and it is up to the consumer, the professional or the amateur shooter to decided what pulls at their heart-strings.

I will say that after just a few days I can see the beauty in this Fuji XT2. It strikes a balance somewhere between the new OMD EM1 II and the Sony full frame A7 series but with that unique Fuji style and look.

Xt2 – 16-55 f/2.8

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After just carrying the XT2 around with me for the past few days it has shown me that it is a very nice, very powerful camera when it comes to what it is made to do, TAKE PICTURES and MAKE MEMORIES. To me, what is so powerful about a camera, no matter the brand or make, is the ability it gives us to create a memory, to slice out a moment in time, in life..that we would never ever get back. It’s as close as we will ever be to a true time machine. What other tool or device allows us to go back in time to when we were kids, to when our kids were little, or to happier or even tougher times of our life. Sure, video can..but it has been photographs that have always been our way of remembering the past.

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If a camera can be fast enough to keep up with our minds, our eyes and our vision for the shot then it makes for a wonderful shooting experience, and without frustration. To me, this is truly all I need in a camera. While I love extreme build, and super geeky tech specs (like the Leica SL EVF and build and controls) I also love the basics, and the ability to CONTROL what I want. In this regard the Fuji’s have always been fantastic. I have many great friends who shoot and LOVE Fuji and as I said, I was never a HUGE fan of the recent cameras but this one and the previous XT1 did indeed float my boat. It’s lovely. But why did not enjoy some previous Fuji models?

In the past, Fuji cameras have either been too slow for me, missed AF too often, felt hollow and cheap or just did not give me the all out IQ I liked due to the XTrans sensor and its uniqueness. But that was in the past my friends, and again, my opinions of those past cameras. Fuji has been forging on, listening to input of the shooters and their customers and each release gets better and better. Just a few days with this camera has made me realize how good Fuji is rocking it these days. The color is still there, and Fuji color..there is no other color like it in digital imaging even today. Some choose Fuji JUST FOR THE COLOR!

Fuji color can be bold but beautiful

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ABOUT THE XT2 (Specs From B&H Photo)

Equipped with a 24.3MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS III image sensor and the X-Processor Pro Engine, users will be able to capture finely detailed imagery quickly and with low noise at sensitivities up to ISO 51200. The powerful combination permits rapid image capture at up to 8 fps with full AF tracking or at up to 14 fps using the silent electronic shutter. In terms of AF, the X-T2 uses an Intelligent Hybrid system with 325 points that ensure accurate, fast tracking of subjects in all modes.

For video, the X-T2 offers internal UHD 4K video as well as an 8-bit 4:2:2 HDMI output. The internal recording offers 100 Mbps bitrate for capturing fine details with ease. Along with this an F-Log Gamma setting will be available for capturing a flat picture best used in serious grading applications. Fuji’s array of Film Simulations and Grain Effects can also be used here, for both photo and video shoots.

Improved handling is a key upgrade in the X-T2, incorporating a larger grip, locking dials, raised buttons, and more to make operation smoother. The weather-sealed body also sports a 0.5″ 0.77x 2.36m-dot OLED EVF with a larger eyecup for comfortable composition and a base refresh rate of 60 fps, which can be boosted to 100 fps. There is also a 3.0″ 1.04m-dot three-way tilting LCD screen for alternative viewing options. This screen has a unique tilt that permits shooting at odd angles, including in the portrait orientation. Additionally, it has a focus lever joystick that allows for rapidly adjusting and changing the selected AF point or area.

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MY QUICK THOUGHTS: IN USE

While this will in no way be a technical review (plenty of reviews out there already that go over the tech specs) it will be more like a diary of my thoughts after using the camera, so let’s get to it and make this an easy and  enjoyable read for all.

  1. BUILD: The XT2 is built well. It feels fantastic in the hand, and the dials and buttons and controls are pretty awesome. The grip for my smallish hands is just right. Best feeling Fuji in my opinion. Also weather sealed so no need to worry if you get caught in the rain.
  2. CONTROL: We get easy access to ISO with a fat ISO dial up top on the left. Under that we can choose our exposure metering, and we can dial in some EV comp or set our shutter speed. Manual dials are my fave and they remind me of the old school cameras..when cameras were made for serious shooters. So the XT2 gets a 9/10 from me in the control dept as the layout is fantastic. Being able to set just about any setting with a dial or button or knob is lovely.
  3. EVF: The EVF, in use, is nice. About equal to the new EM1 MKII, or Sony A7 RII. No complaints, no feeling of lag.
  4. LCD: Swivel up and down, instead of out to the left. So it is not a swing out LCD but rather a traditional swivel up LCD. Looks great.
  5. SPEED: While not as fast as the OLympus EM1 II or the PEN-F I have here, the AF is about on par with my Sony A7RII, maybe a tad faster. I was seeing quite a bit of AF hunt in lower light using the 16-55 but nothing that would be a deal breaker or bad…just slower than some of the competition.
  6. HIGH ISO: Not as good as I had thought it would be or hoped. See below for a comparison against the Sony A7RII and my PEN-F. With that said, all cameras today are as good as we need for high ISO. While some are better than others, all today can shoot with great results in low light. Some can go above and beyond with ISO up to 500k but when sticking with ISO’s up to 10,000…most APS-C cameras and Full Framers can do the job.
  7. IMAGE QUALITY: Fantastic. Lovely colors. Nice details. Best IQ from Fuji yet. This sensor is fantastic.

16-55 with the XT2 at ISO 6400 with no NR – 16mm

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Today we have amazing cameras from many manufacturers. Fuji, Sony and Olympus to me, are the tops right now in the digital imaging game. With Nikon and Canon doing mostly “more of the same” with the 5D’s and the D5’s and the DXXX DSLR’s it is Mirrorless where some of the cool tech gains are being seen each year. This year seems to be the year of speed as most cameras in 2016 have the ability to shoot uber fast from 8-crazyhigh FPS. This XT2 can do 8FPS with full AF tracking. I am a one frame per second kind of guy, and before I shoot I calculate and know what shot I want. So I take one. For some though, they like to use these high frame rates to capture the shot, and with 8FPS and continued AF tracking one should be able to get the shot they need with this Fuji.

The Xt2 with 16-55 lens, for me, was a joy to use. While I did not get to dig in deep like I normally would, I used it enough to know that if I were to buy a Fuji, this would be it.

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ISO TESTS

Easy Squeezy ISO test between the XT2, Sony A7RII and Olympus PEN-F. Just because I have them all here in front of me. Three formats, Micro 4/3. APS-C, and Full Frame. Click them to see the larger versions with a true 100% crop embedded.

CLICK THE IMAGES FOR LARGER AND CROP!

ALL CAMERAS WERE SET EXACTLY THE SAME with ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed. NOISE REDUCTION was OFF and all are from RAW.

ISO 3200

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

ISO 6400

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

ISO 10,000

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

What else can I say about this XT2 that popped out to me while using it? 

It’s a solid, well made, good feeling, fast response fun to use camera that provides the Fuji color so many seek in spades. Without an AA filter the details are also there and while I did not get a chance to do a detail test in these short four days I do see that little extra sparkle from the extra detail that is being recorded here. I prefer a camera without an AA filter as I rarely ever have a problem with Moire and would much rather have that crisp output than something smudging up my details to avoid Moire.

When I look back to just a few years ago, it makes me realize just how far we have come with mirrorless digital cameras and how much the DSLR has stayed the same (of course with the speed and MP enhancements over the years). Today, the Canon and Nikon DSLR’s look mostly the same as they have for years. They are still fat, bulky and well..DSLR like. Mirrorless cameras and manufacturers who are putting time, money and resources into the design and function of these cameras, well it is starting to pay off as today, as we end 2016 our choice in cameras and lenses have NEVER been more plentiful or full of great options.

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Today we can choose from Full Frame sensor mirrorless cameras like the Sony A7 series or Leica or Pentax or whoever and have the most Dynamic Range, Best Low light Performance and richest files. We can choose an APS-C model, with a little bit smaller of a sensor to gain some speed, versatility and some larger DOF. Models like this XT2 or the new Sony A6500 would fit that bill well. Then we have Micro 4/3 and cameras like the new EM1 MKII or PEN-F or Panasonic GX8 or 85. These cameras offer smaller sensors still but more speed…the fastest speed IMO. They offer solid build and feel and crazy cool features but we will lose out on some shallow DOF and some high ISO noise (it will be greater). So whatever model, sensors size or brand we choose will depend on what we want out of a camera today.

For Mirrorless:

If you want something special, look at a Leica SL or M

If you want amazing IQ and color and good mix of high ISO and DOF check out Fuji

If you want the richest files and most DR and best low light, look at Sony

If  you want the fastest speed and most versatility and best build look at the EM1 II, but you will lose out on some low light high ISO and DR and Shallow DOF

If you want some serious IQ and do not care about speed, versatility, usability or build check out the Sigma Quattro 

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I get asked almost daily one simple question: “What camera should I buy”..most ask me for an under $2000 choice. I can never answer this as the choice is yours, not mine. I can only tell you about my experiences and that is what these pages are for! I will say that this Fuji XT2 is fantastic, and I would not hesitate to recommend it to someone looking to get into a new mirrorless system.

What would I buy if starting new today? THAT IS HARD TO ANSWER!

For me personally I enjoy two types of cameras. On one hand I love a good solid manual camera which is why I always have a Leica M and at least one M lens on hand. Sometimes I get that itch for the rangefinder experience where I manually set up everything and take a shot. The Leica M delivers this experience like no other digital can. Other times I like an auto focus camera and when I shoot AF I like speed, response and no lag. My A7RII feels a little laggy today when next to these new breed of fast cameras. Today if I had to buy into a camera system it would most likely be Olympus or this Fuji for my non full frame choice, and a Leica M for those full frame manual moments.

I loved the Olympus EM 1 MKII and can not wait to get one back in my hands (still no review unit) as it was speedy, responsive, built like a mini tank and never gave me an OOF shot or issue. The lenses are smaller than APS-X and full frame equivalents and it’s a top quality camera all the way around.

For other reasons I am truly digging this XT2. The look, design, controls, build and feel and the image quality and mostly the color performance. It does not FEEL as solid or as well made as the Olympus but it is. It does not seem as fast as the Olympus, and it is not, but it is close enough. It may not deliver ISO performance like a Sony A7S can but it’s good enough for me and my shooting. The sensor in this Xt2 is nice, and today Adobe products can process these RAW files much better than in the past and without the mush of the past.

Fuji cameras are popular, and for good reason. While I pointed out the weak links in past Fuji cameras, I always give credit where it is due and it is due to them with this Fuji XT2. I just wish I had it for two weeks so I could have truly dug in, traveled more with it and had a chance to test the 4K video and features I missed.

If you own a Fuji now, and it is an older model I can highly recommend this XT2, it is a fabulous upgrade and addition to the Fuji lineup. As for the 16-55 lens, it is a fine pro level f/2.8 zoom and delivers on the color and sharpness and look that Fuji is known for. This camera is fast, it’s responsive, and it is mature. It offers up the best Fuji has to offer at the end of 2016.

Highly Recommended! Even with only four days of use!

WHERE TO BUY?

I recommend the following dealers for the Fuji XT2:

B&H Photo HERE

Amazon HERE

PopFlash.com HERE

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74 thoughts on “Four days and 20 shots with the Fuji XT2. By Steve Huff”

  1. Hey Steve, very impressive review of the XT-2 after only using it for 4 days!! That said though, having used the XT-1 and now the X-Pro 2, IMHO, one needs considerably more than 4 days to truly evaluate the image quality of a new camera, especially one with the sheer depth of customization and extensve feature set of the XT-2! Thanks, and I do always appreciate your honest educated opinions on all your reviews!

  2. Hey Steve,

    Sometimes it’s just the tone of the article. Sometimes it’s a predisposition and then we “read” what we want.

    I had the distinct impression that you didn’t like Fuji–AT ALL. Previous tone in some previous blogs. Not your fault. Just how I read the message.

    So I was surprised to read this blog/review.

    Gives me pause.

    I keep reading many, many great reviews about Fuji. In particular regarding ability to take great portraits. I’m beginning to sway. Right now it’s Olympus OMD-E5 MkII and Canon 6D. But since no one is making me/us do any of this, I’m sure beginning to sway.

    Great Review.

    Thanks!

  3. Hey Steve, nice review of the X-T2!
    After reading more reviews of this camera and after a try in the photostore I decided to buy the X-T2.

    I also have a Olympus OMD-EM5 MII. Unfortunately(!) I am going to sell this EM5 MII. For me, after one and half a year I am not still used to the menu system. Especially the 1/2 lever. I always forget to switch the lever back to position 1 after changing ISO settings.

    The X-T2 is amazing handy for quickly changing settings. And the colors are nice and different camera profiles are awesome!
    But I understand what you mean by Olympus is “better built”. The EM5 MII feels a lot more sturdier than the X-T2. Even the flipscreen feels more sturdier. I love Olympus, it’s quality and sensor. My first digital camera was a E500. But also Fuji is making progress. So I feel no regret for leaving Olympus.
    I would like to see a crossover between Oly and Fuji. The Oly build with the Fuji sensor :-D

    1. Hi Jeroen~
      Congratulations on your XT-2 purchase!! I think you’ll be amazed by the image quality, sharpness, and detail you’ll find in your Fujifilm files, both Raw and jpeg. One thought about your comment regarding the build quality of hte XT-2 v. the Olympus OMD-EM5 MII…I’m not totally unfamiliar with Olympus gear, having had the quite old E4 and E5 cameras, which were indeed, built well. However, I am most familiar with the Fujifilm X-System, and I don’t quite understand your statement about the XT-2 feeling “inferior” in build quality to the Oly. I mean, for what a camera is intended to do (not hammering nails, for instance), there is absolutely nothing wrong with the XT-2! How much “more” solid do you require a camera to be, for even daily use? The XT-2 (and X-Pro 2) are made with magnesium alloy and what little plastic is used is of very high quality. I think the build is excellent, while perhaps up to a Nikon D5, it’s orders of magnitude lighter as well. Not to mention the awesome build quality and image quality of the Fujinon XF lenses! Also, the fact that Fujifilm is one of a very few companies to regularly update their gear via firmware, which basically gives you a “new” camera, rather than having to purchase a new body. So, my point is, enjoy your XT-2 and don’t worry if you can’t build a house with it…It should serve you very well in your photographic pursuits. Good luck.

      1. Hi Solomon, Thank you for your reply. Ohw man, I am very pleased with he XT2 :-D
        So much joy with it, the different settings are easy to acces.
        Let me explain: I was not saying “inferior” of the XT-2 build. It is very well build. And we do not need a tank to photograph with. But when I hold the EM5 MII in my hands, it just feels more solid. Knobs are turning more smoother with much more grip on to it.
        With colder weather, with the XT2, my thumb has more trouble to have grip on the rear turning wheel at the back of the body. The front- and rear turning wheels are smaller.

  4. I have been wondering about the X-T2 and X-Pro2. Anyone care to comment if they have used both?

    Enjoyed your review Steve! Thanks again.

  5. I went for the Pro 2. Sold Lumix GX7 and 5 len to help pay for the Pro 2. I purchased a Pro 1 when the Pro 2 first came out. While the images were good it ad a hard time with focusing. The Pro 2 has not had a problem with finding focus. I love the optical viewfinder and use it most of the time. I shoot street and most people think I am using a film camera. Funny thing is that I go to up town Charlotte every Monday and for the past several weeks someone has asked me about having a photo made either for advertising or a portrait session. That never happened when I shot with either my old Nikons or the Lumix.

  6. Steve,

    such a relief to have you once again return to really liking a Fuji X camera. Always thought your reviews were the best, most thorough, hands on reviews on the internet so as an XT1 owner was troubled by your concerns about the aggressive noise reduction/watercolor effect of the Fuji XT1.
    Sold my XT1 and bought an XPro2 which gave me more megapixels and so more detail, but more importantly allowed the NR to be turned down to -4 were it stays on my camera.

    For my 2 cents worth,much prefer the XPro2 to the XT2 – who needs a flippy screen or an EVF in the middle of the camera where your check is always resting on the display screen.

  7. Naked Raygun! Now there’s a blast from the past. Saw them at a church crypt gig in Bristol, UK some time in the late eighties. Shame I didn’t have a camera with me – although it probably wouldn’t have survived the show.

    1. I love NR and used to go to almost all of their shows in Chicago back in the 80’s and early 90’s. Was a blast. I still keep up with them. Pierre had a stroke, Jeff supposedly has Parkinson’s Disease and yet they still play shows here and there. Good to see someone else who saw them!

      1. Love Naked Raygun! Went to college in Chicago in the ’80s and still have my vinyl copy of Throb Throb. Great shows at the Cubby Bear and the Metro.

  8. Very nice review Steve, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

    But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
    How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

  9. Very nice review, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

    But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
    How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

  10. Very nice review, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

    But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
    How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

  11. Steve,

    Very nice review, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

    But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
    How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

    If you consider a full Fuji (X-T2 and X-Pro1 or X-E2s) versus Olympus (E-M1 II and Pen-F) system with some nice zooms and primes, how do you feel the systems as a whole compare?

    And most imporatant: when can we expect the next video review? ;) I always enjoyed these!

  12. What a tempting camera…tried the xpro2…but felt that the difference was minor compared to T1…however recently I have returned to something completely different…

  13. So far all the 4k videos by X-T2 look god awful. The video dynamic range is below some cellphones. It’s a photo only camera like Sigma Quattro SD, but only very very fast. Together with low-end AEB +-2EV, the EM1 II is simple a better tool (and that video shot on Island was AWESOME).

    1. Yes that would be nice to se a comparison between Fuji and Sigma. Both have their own solution for picture photographer. Fuji X-trans against Foveon APS-H.

  14. On image quality alone, I would say from all of the reviews on this website the XT2 has a clarity that is most remarkable… since you reviewed the Canon 6D (IMO). Finally I feel the mirrorless camera world (not including Leica) has a great champion.

    1. Hi ears. As a Fujifilm X-System user, I can defintely agree with your comment about the “clarity” of Fujifilm images! I’ve used many brands over the last 35+ years, and frankly, have never seen that image “clarity” or detail rendition like I do with Fujifilm and their awesome Fujinon XF lenses!

  15. Steve,

    When you say fantastic fuji colors.. is it when you shot with jpeg ooc? Is it difficult to replicate fuji color by post processing other camera’s raw?
    And when using fuji, as a person who always shot raw, will you recommend shooting jpeg only with fuji?

    Thanks Steve..nice work as always

    1. Very nice review, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

      But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
      How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

  16. Steve,

    Very nice review, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

    But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
    How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

    If you consider a full Fuji (X-T2 and X-Pro1 or X-E2s) versus Olympus (E-M1 II and Pen-F) system with some nice zooms and primes, how do you feel the systems as a whole compare?

    And most imporatant: when can we expect the next video review? ;) I always enjoyed these!

  17. It sure is a fantastic camera, but I simply cannot fathom WHY does it cost 1500 euros. The price is outrageous. You can get the Nikon D7200 and Tammy 17-50 2.8 for 1200 euros, and the Nikon has better Dr and better detail, and its RAW files are not cooked as Fuji’s are.

      1. That’s below the belt but it got a laugh out of me! I’d also dispute Karlo’s claims but such arguments are pointless – both cameras are eminently capable.

    1. Karlo, Just FYI, I’ve used both the Nikon D5300 (with the excellent 16-85 Zoom-Nikkor), as well as the Fujifilm XT-1 and X-Pro 2 (with their superb Fujinon XF lenses), and can say that, in my experience, I see a bit more sharpness and detail from my Fujifilm files (both Raw and jpeg), and that’ when shooting both systems optimally, i.e., tripod-mounted, self timer, optimal exposure settings, etc.). YMMV. Thank you.

  18. This just reminds me that all but the cheapest cameras today have fantastic IQ.

    That fact frees us up to choose our platform based on things like
    – lenses available
    – size of lens+camera together
    – features, like stabilization, AF speed, etc.
    – bokeh craved

    Choose to please yourself; and then move on to the more central matter: Making images!

    I have plenty of visual arts background, and I wouldn’t choose one of those cameras based on color rendition. So close; and so easily tweaked!

    1. Indeed, the appeal of the whole system to you and if the system has the right ingredients for you is how I think a choice should be made as well.

  19. Along with Fuji IQ and JPEG picture styles, the main attraction of the XT2 for me are the external controls (and its LCD). I’m tempted, but the deal-breaker for me is its short battery life, typical of many mirrorless cameras, including in my experience the Oly EM1 and Fuji X100T. Of course, the extra grip with two extra batteries can be purchased, but that defeats the size and weight advantages over DSLRs of mirrorless cameras which constitute much of their appeal.

  20. Hi Steve, Nice first impression.You didn’t´t mention too much about the excellent Jpeg feature and the different film simulations, guess you will cover it later. I have several Fuji cameras and intend to upgrade to the XT2 soon, but there is some suggestion that the newer sensor has a different rendering . Can you consider this in your next review? By the way, the Fuji is a nice camera to use and your photos in the article are some of the best I have seen you publish. Maybe you got some special inspiration from the camera.

  21. You have no ideas how much I love reading these reviews. There is nothing better for me than grab a cup of coffee very early in the morning, get my iPad with its lovely display and read Steve’s reviews/early thoughts about cameras. The Fuji colours are amazing. I realized maybe I don’t need a full frame as APSC and Micro four thirds have developed so much. I am still thinking about my next purchase. I own a Canon camera but I am pretty positive I don’t want DSLRs anymore, mirroless is the way to go. Thanks for this incredible early thoughts on the Fuji X-T2.

    One question, are you buying this camera?

  22. Thanks for the review Steve
    I’m stuck in a bit of a dilemma – should I dump my Nikon d750’s for wedding’s and low light dance ballet for the Fuji xt2 or not ? My main reason is the back and front focus that rears its ugly head every now and then even with calibration -its just the nature of the beast . your review is the first I’ve seen that’s kinda poopooed the AF – my question is how reliable did you the xt2 in focusing .
    Thanks for the reviews
    P.s. I have a em-1 mark 2 on order

    1. Hi Richard. Your mention of the DSLR’s potential front/back AF issue was indeed the main reason I switched to mirrorless (the awesome Fujiflim X-System), because obviously there is no such issue with mirrorless, since AF is derived directly off the sensor! Many folks either don’t realize this huge difference, or fail to mention it when comparing the differences between DSLR’s and Mirrorless systems. That, plus the fact that Fujifilm is one of the very few systems that offer robust and meaningful firmware updates! Thank you for enlightening us!

  23. Interesting writeup, and maybe it will finally make the Fuji fans happy :-) but it does remind me of my own quandary.

    I went mirrorless to increase my mobility, and I got into the Fuji system for its decent low-light performance and because it had the wide-aperture lenses I need. I’m now on my third Fuji body: first an X-Pro 1 (bought used; still own) then X-T 10 (since sold) and then an X-Pro 2 (current.)

    But I’ve never been really happy about it, because I’ve always found the Fuji cameras to be vaguely irritating to use. The shutter buttons feel wobbly and unpredictable; some controls require too little effort and others too much; and there are things that seem quirky for the sake of being quirky, such as the X-Pro 2’s stupidly inconvenient lift-to-set ISO control. Maybe the X-T 2 would be better, but after three other Fujis I’m skeptical that they’ve suddenly “got it.”

    Meanwhile, I also use an Olympus E-M 5 mk II, and everything about it is much more pleasant. The shutter feels and sounds great, the controls are well-placed and well-weighted, and the whole camera is crisp and responsive. But it can’t quite match the richness of the Fuji’s low-light images.

    So I’m stuck with maintaining two systems: one that’s not quite as good but much nicer to use, vs. another that’s a bit better but also more annoying. Drat!

    1. the internet teaches us that from m43 to APSC to 135 there is each one stop to be gained.

      However, I don’t see that much of a difference. The PenF is amazing at ISO 10’000 (at the displayed 1800×1200 pixel). I thought about the Olympus E-M5 back then in 2013 and never dreamed of a high ISO capability like this. M43 is not dead and inferior to the 135 FF sensors! Although there is a difference in IQ, yes, it wouldn’t matter to me (as of now)

  24. Fuji’s colors are so much better than anything Sony. So are the controls. And the menus, geez they’re so logically organized. I have to say I’m really impressed by the XT2. The 4k video is better than anything Sony produces anywhere near the XT2’s $1600 price point, better color, far less rolling shutter and a really nice/detailed image.

    You can go small with lenses like the 18-55, 35/2 and such or if you want to shoot events you have the 16-55 & 50-140/2.8’s. The 10-24 is amazing and the 56/1.2 is something special. Unlike Sony’s APS-c, you can actually build a lens lineup.

    Fuji strikes a nice balance between speed/size/cost. In case you can’t tell, I’m getting tired of Sony only producing FE lenses and the fact that most FE’s are getting larger, and the GM’s are just goofy in price and size. I think the XT2 is going to push me to sell the a7rII. I’ll submit a guest post if it happens.

  25. Great mini-review and I concur with all your thoughts. I had been hanging in for some years now, waiting for a camera that “ticks all the boxes” for me, and when Fuji released the XT-2 I decided that is the one! So 2 months ago I procured my XT-2 and, along with the 27mm pancake lens (makes it a real compact take-anywhere camera), plus 14mm wide angle, 60mm macro/portrait, and the mighty 100-400mm telephoto (incredible image-stabilised performer!), I can truly say I now have a very satisfying set-up. Having spent years with a manual Canon F-1N, this XT-2 just “feels right” for me. And yes, the colour and IQ is beautiful, just perfect. The camera continues to grow on me and I have no complaints whatsoever!

  26. In every high is shots, the pen f was the sharpest in every sample but also the noisiest, fuji was less sharp (probably the lens), and the Sony was very soft. If I were to switch formats, fuji would be my choice, but I’m very much excited for the em1 mkii.

  27. For the absolute *best* IQ from Fujifilm X-Trans Sensor, get Iridient Developer from Brian Griffith…a (still to be released in 2016 – feature spec’ed down) Version for Windows is into the works…he told me in a email. Google about Iridient Developer, it does magic with X-Trans RAW RAF Files, compared to Adobe ACR/LR.

    Good Light !
    Marc

  28. As someone who is thinking again of jumping into something smaller (currently a Nikon D600) I have been lusting after the EM1v2 as well as the XT2…The Oly does get me a bit more excited to go out and shoot and maybe that’s really what’s at play here.

      1. Do you actually have a X-T2? My X-Pro2 smokes my Pen F in start up time, EVF refresh rate, file write time, and with some lenses in AF speed. The Fuji feels clearly more responsive and assuring overall.

        1. Smokes?? I know you are not actually comparing the right pair of cameras but, even so, that’s one heck of an exaggeration! It’s probably best to compare cameras from the same generation but you’d still be in a minority to call the first EM1 “slow”.

          1. It does. The processor in the Fuji is obviously much more powerful and especially when bracketing file write time is way faster, not slowing down the photog. For mft the PenF maybe rather on the slow side, e.g. my Pana GM5 has faster AF.

        2. I tested the X-T2 last week in a store for about 1/2h together with a sales person and the AF with the XF 35mm 2.0 WR was clearly slower than my E-M10, no question, no doubt. Turning the aperture ring on the X-T2 showed the aperture in the finder with about 1 sek. delay what really got on my nerves, so slow. IQ of the X-T2 was great and the print we made was excellent too. At Photokina I also had the new Canon Eos M5 in my hands and this camera’s AF was quicker than the X-T2′ too. The X-T2 is a nice camera with excellent IQ output but it is not as responsive as I would expect it to be. Nice if you could tell me your settings to overcome my findings but first impressions do not correspond with Fuji marketing.

    1. Very nice review, one I have really been waiting for and one that (together with the E-M1 review) answered many of my questions. Looking forward to the second part of the E-M1 review by the way!

      But this one also brought some things to my mind that I’d really like your opinion on.
      How do you feel the mojo concerning results and colors compares between Fuji and Olympus? And what happens when you add a Leica M to the mix?

  29. I jumped into Fuji earlier this year. Fuji has never really grabbed the spec headlines of fastest, sharpest pixel peeper, or feature laden, but there can be this “look” I’ve noticed from others that I had to try. For me the surprise reward came from the numerous Fuji film simulation modes, and endless ways to adjust each (love Classic Chrome). The jpegs can be tailored out of camera outstanding, and spend more time shooting and sit back on the computer to just enjoy rather than tweak raw files. Upon living with this camera for most of the year it has better and more consistent image quality to anything I’ve used, more lifelike, soulful, beautifully rendered colors. The Fuji retro design approach to cameras and lenses now with many compact primes weatherproofed is a bonus for street shooting (aperture dials on lenses – amen). I’ve sold off a lot of Sony equipment since. Yes the selection and offerings in mirrorless cameras has never been better, and with so many more creative options to just keep it fun.

    1. Either. I have both. The 18-55 is just as useful as the 16-55, except the aperture is variable on the 18-55. Given the ISO invariance with Fuji’s I use the 18-55 90% of the time between the two. Given the use of focus peaking & adapters, your extensive manual focus options are vast.

    2. Either. I have both. The 18-55 is just as useful as the 16-55, except the aperture is variable on the 18-55. Given the ISO invariance with Fuji’s I use the 18-55 90% of the time between the two. Given the use of focus peaking & adapters, your extensive manual focus options are vast.

  30. What about a test where you shoot at 100 or 200 ISO and see how good a camera at the
    normal way most people shoot. Then g o to 1,600 which is as far I as most people need
    to shoot in low light.

    What about the people who have discovered a flash and flash fill. HUH?

    HIt is called a camera test… Not a let’s see how good or bad they are at limits where as you say, “They are all good” then, “But some are better than others” WOW. You should also try shooting from a hammock or tightrope. It is easy to show a MFT camera is as “good” as a FF if you show them on line at less than 8×10.

    Real tests may get you a few more real subscribers.

    1. Why so grumpy? “The normal way most people shoot”? Now that is an interesting suggestion. Any scientific proof your way is “the normal way”. Shooting at ISO 100 or 200 is only possible outside during the day or using flash inside which is not always advisable. Yes, a lot of my shots are ISO 100 to 200. But every ilc I have owned was decent enough at these settings. when you need to crank up ISO for freezing motion is where it gets difficult: wb, noise, sharpness, af. Everything is compromised. So it is valid to test higher ISO settings. Now one could certainly test more than just some high ISO shots of non-moving subjects. But Steve had the camera for four days only and probably other things on his plate as well. So why don’t you do the tests everybody wants to read and make a fortune doing that? Maybe because it was easier bickering about what others do than doing something yourself.

      Thanks for the quick take on the X-T2, Steve. If possible I would really love to see a full review in the future.

    1. Only based on the resolution on-line. Like in all the company brochures… all the photos are smaller than 11×14 or A3. Great trick huh. and they always leave out the actualy focal length when they shoot with a zoom and the seldum say how large are each pixel and how many shot the shutter will take before it dies. Teast on your own..

    2. That’s what he said – and he said why! I would too. In fact, three years ago, I picked the EM1 over the (cheaper and lighter!) Sony A7 and am so glad I did. If I was starting from scratch, I’d reconsider Fuji as their lens line up is vastly better now, though I think I’d prefer the XPro2 personally.

      1. Hi Deep. Yes, I agree completely! The Fujinon XF lenses are simply stellar, and the best line of lenses I’ve used in my 35+ years in photography. The Fujinon XF90mm f/2 is the sharpest lens I’ve ever used, and I’ve used a LOT of lenses over the years. In fact, it’s their lenses that made the decision for me to go to the Fujifilm X-System.

    3. (I replied earlier but that seems to have got lost so sorry if we end up with a double-up.) Anyhow, that’s what Steve said and he also explained why he’d make that choice. I agree with him all the way.

    4. The Sony a6500 if you’re planning to shoot RAW or shoot 4K Video (Best files out there). If you want a true Professional body that’s built well, completely weather proof and has 2 SD slots, or if you want the fastest camera, go with the EM1-II. If stabilization is a major concern, go for the EM1-II, or the a6500. If you shoot Jpegs and you like the Fuji color, go with th XT-2.

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