In anticipation of BluPrint’s Special Issue 1: Architectural Photography coming out next month, we take a look at the Fujifilm’s newest, top-spec camera in the X Series range, the X-H1. With his opening remarks at its grand launch the Director of Fujifilm Philippines, Ryo Nagaoka proclaimed that, “The X-H1 is the highest performance camera in the X Series range.”
While the X-H1 is marketed towards the usual genres of portraits, wedding, nature, travel, documentary, and sports photography, what does this mean for you designers and architects? The possibilities for documenting your architectural, interior, and product designs within a single unit have reached a new level, whether it be through stills photography or high-quality video.
Fujifilm has stepped up the X-H1’s video capabilities to support video production requirements, making it a great addition to every professional photographer and videographer’s set of tools in creating visual stories. This groundbreaking innovation has also lead Fujifilm to collaborate with some of the industry’s best, including award-winning celebrity wedding videographer Bob Nicolas, acclaimed director of photography for TVCs Odyssey Flores, and blockbuster hitmaker Dan Villegas.
The Fujifilm X-H1, with a new robust and durable body, incorporates a range of extremely proficient features that support shooting in various scenarios demanded by professional photographers and videographers. For videographers in particular, the X-H1 is the first camera from the X Series to include the latest 5-axis in-body image stabilization (IBIS)*, which has a maximum of 5.5 stops**.
Speaking to BluPrint, Senior Marketing Leader for the Photo and Electronic Imaging Division, Marilen Catanghal, reassures photographers who shoot architecture or interiors that the crop sensor does not compromise on the output.
She confirms, “A lot of our Fujifilm Ambassadors are saying that you really don’t need a full frame camera to take photos of architecture or cityscapes. We have landscape photographers who use the X-H1 or X-T2 and they have no problem with it being a crop sensor camera.” Indeed, the X-H1 is based on the same 24-megapixel sensor as the X-T2, which is more than enough to reproduce the very best resolution at all scales.
“I really like Fujifilm as a company because it listens directly to its users and reviewers, encouraging us to provide feedback which is used to further improve their cameras.” – Bob Nicolas, award-winning celebrity wedding videographer.
One of the biggest ergonomic improvements, as attested to by all the Fujifilm Ambassadors in attendance, is how comfortable it feels to hold in your hand. Akin to a DSLR yet still lighter than one, the Fujifilm X-H1 feels more professional and allows you to achieve secure handling when using it both in landscape and portrait orientation, as well as when shooting for longer periods of time.
Among the other upgraded operability features include:
- A highly robust, durable body, and easy operability means comfortable shooting across a wide range of environments. In addition to the camera’s dust-resistant, water-resistant properties, and the ability to operate in temperatures down to -10°C.
- A leaf-spring switch for the shutter release button to achieve a stable feel when holding the camera and easy operation of the shutter release button.
- A new AF-ON button has been added to the back of the camera. This makes it easier to operate the autofocus with the thumb, allowing the photographer to focus on using their index finger to operate the shutter-release button.
- The viewfinder is a high-magnification, high-precision electronic viewfinder. The viewfinder display is extraordinarily smooth, with a display time lag of just 0.005 seconds and a frame rate of 100 frames per second, allowing the photographer to instantly confirm the movement of the subject and position of the focus with great precision.
- The rear LCD monitor is a 3-direction tilt, 3-inch, 1.04 million dot electrostatic touch-panel LCD which can be intuitively set to the desired angle. In addition, the 1.28 inch sub-LCD on the top of the camera, a current feature of the medium format FUJIFILM GFX 50S, allows for instant confirmation of shooting information.
- Enlargement of the buttons on the rear of the camera and improvements to the grip of the front and rear command dials.
- The X-H1 also features focus lever that facilitates rapid, accurate movement to the desired focus point.
For a full specification and more information about the X-H1 head over to the Fujifilm X-H1 product site.
Enhanced video performance
The Fujifilm X-H1’s video capabilities represent a substantial leap into the videography market, bringing it in closer competition with its professional DSLR counterparts.
This is the first X Series camera to house an internal in-body image stabilization (IBIS) system. It harnesses three axial accelerometers, three axial Gyro sensors, and a specially developed dual-processor. This combination achieves produces approximately 10,000 calculations per second. When unified with compensating mechanisms, the result is an uncompromising image quality and precision with performance as described below.
The X-H1’s comprehensive range of video features include:
- The camera’s video image quality has been improved through its ability to record a high bit rate of 200 Mbps.
- The X-H1 is the first camera in the X Series to include ETERNA, a new film simulation ideal for shooting movies. This mode simulates cinematic film, creating understated colors and rich shadow tones, greatly enhancing creative freedom during post-processing.
- The first flicker reduction mode on an X Series camera and improved AF algorithms enhance shooting stamina. Flicker reduction modes are essential for indoor sport photography, and the X-H1 achieves this using a mirrorless camera, allowing for stable exposure during burst shots even under fluorescent and mercury lighting.
- Major improvements have been made to the AF-C (autofocus) performance. Subjects where results with phase detection autofocus were previously poor, such as finely-detailed surface textures—textured concrete, stone or wood finishes—can now be captured with high precision.
- Vertical power boost grip VPB-XH1 (exclusive for the X-H1). Two batteries may be attached, with a third battery in the body of the camera increasing the maximum number of available shots in normal mode to approximately 900. In boost mode, multiple batteries can be used simultaneously, improving performance for burst shots and reducing the interval between shots, shutter time lag, and the blackout period. In addition, the accessory also increases the maximum period for shooting movies in 4K to about 30 minutes, making the VPB-XH1 an essential accessory for maximizing the performance of the X-H1.
New lenses to look forward to
By the end of 2018 Fujifilm will release the XF8-16mm F2.8 R WR, designed to meet the needs of architectural and interiors photographers, while also being suitable for photographing cityscapes or landscapes. The XF200mmF2 R LM OIS WR, a wide aperture single-focus telephoto lens, will also be released by the end of the year. The X-H1 is also compatible with a range of other interchangeable lenses due for release much sooner. These include the MKX18-55mm T2.9 and MKX50-135mm T2.9 professional cinema lenses which incorporate the X mount (scheduled for release in May 2018). The new camera and lens combinations will provide outstanding image production and will be ideal for fast action sports photography.
The Fujifilm X-H1 embodies the versatility needed for cutting-edge stills and moving images. In terms of professional use, whether it be documenting the various stages of construction, or those killer photos and engaging videos to market a completed project’s design intentions, this camera will not disappoint. When taking field trips to do research or find inspiration for your projects, the X-H1 is the ideal companion.
The Fujifilm X-H1 Body is priced at Php 106,990, while the Fujifilm X-H1 Grip Kit costs Php 124, 990, available at authorized Fujifilm dealers nationwide.
* 5-axis image stabilization is possible with all XF and XC lenses.
** Up to a maximum of 5.5 stops image stabilization, is possible when the camera is used with all XF lenses that do not include optical image stabilization technology.
For more information, visit www.Fujifilmph.com and follow Fujifilm Philippines Lifestyle at Instagram @fujifilmph and Facebook, www.facebook.com/fujifilmphilippines