Month: February 2016

New Fuji X-Pro2 or Wait for X-T2

Well, here it comes.  A lot of people have been waiting a long time for the Fujifilm X-Pro1 replacement, seeing that it is now about four years old, and so, in a few weeks time the improved X-Pro2 will ship.  I have one on pre-order.  Full disclosure here;  I have no affiliation with Fujifilm.  I buy all my own Fuji gear.  I am not an official “Fuji X” shooter.  I would not consider myself a Fuji “fan boy”.  If something better, for me, comes along I’ll buy it and use it.  But, I don’t see that happening.

In March of 2015 I posted my story about why I switched from 48 years of shooting Nikon, to using Fuji cameras exclusively.  You can read about that HERE.  Since that time I have received a lot of questions about my experience and whether the switch was worth it.  Lately, the questions have been, “Should I buy the X-Pro2 or wait for the X-T2?”

Well, I can tell you the switch was definitely worth it.  I’m very happy with my X-E2 and X-T1 and the images they produce.  Are they perfect?  The simple answer is, “No”.  But, not much is simple any longer.

Will Crockett loaned me an X-Pro1 for a week, in August 2013, with a “kit lens” and told me to shoot only jpegs because, at that time, Lightroom was really harsh on Fuji RAW images.  So that’s what I did.  I did not care for the quirks of the camera or the layout of the controls.  It was slow to focus and the viewfinder was very new to me.  I never used the optical viewfinder and found the EVF a little cumbersome.  However, I loved the images!  I can’t stress that enough.  The image below is a straight out of the camera jpeg of that X-Pro1.

X-Pro1, ISO 400, 1/300’s, f8, Velvia Film Simulation ©Rick Lewis

It’s just a snapshot but, boy was I impressed!

I found myself missing that camera after I gave it back.  The X-E2 was soon released so I bought that due to the improved EVF, and processor.  Now, I’m impatiently waiting on the X-Pro2!!

In a nutshell, why I’m not waiting for the X-T2;  I think the X-Pro is the “Goldilocks” of the X-series cameras when it comes to size.  I really liked the extra size of the camera.  I love my X-E2 but it is just a little too small for me.  The same goes for my X-T1.  The X-Pro just fits me better.  It has nothing to do with bigger is better, at all.  Some will not like the larger size, but I do.

A huge plus for me with the X-Pro2 is the ergonomics in relation to that focus “joystick”.  I had that on my Nikon D4 and loved it.  It will make focusing a breeze while looking through the viewfinder, which I find difficult on my X-T1.  The X-Pro rangefinder design just makes shooting easier for me since these cameras are so small.  I find my right cheek getting in the way when using the X-T1.  I am constantly having to drop the camera from my eye to adjust something.  I rarely have to do that with my X-E2, especially with FW 4.0 installed!

Old Coke A Cola bottles
X-E2, ISO 400, 1/550’s, f4, RAW processed in Capture One 8, ©Rick Lewis

No need for me to wait for the X-T2.  There is no way Fuji will have screwed up the image quality and I have read that high ISO, which is very important to me, is about one full f-stop better!  I can hardly wait.  I am cautious though.  I ordered my X-Pro2 through Amazon.  It won’t take more than one afternoon and just a few snaps to see whether I will keep it.  With Amazon’s fabulous return policy, I’m covered.

So, I’m not waiting for the X-T2 but to answer the question as to whether you should, maybe.  The new X-Pro will not have a tilting LCD.  That is a very big deal to some, especially nature and landscape photographers.  I never thought I would care about that feature but it really comes in handy.  The shot below was taken with my X-T1, fully extended on my tripod.  I would never have been able to compose the image without the tilting LCD.

X-T1, ISO 200, 6s, f18, RAW processed in Capture One 8, ©Rick Lewis
X-T1, ISO 200, 6s, f18, RAW processed in Capture One 8, ©Rick Lewis

The other issue I see for most that I have talked to is that they have never even held a rangefinder camera before.  I guess that’s way before their time.  They have a difficult time getting use to the “feel” of the camera.  Since, 1967 all I had ever shot was a Nikon SLR, both film and digital.  So, I get it.  If that’s the case perhaps you should wait.

Why am I suggesting waiting for the X-T2 instead of buying the very capable X-T1?  Because of that little “joystick” used for focusing.  It will undoubtably be included in the new design.  Why wouldn’t it?  The X-shooters that beta tested the X-Pro2 rave about it.  I just find focusing on my X-T1 to be a little cumbersome.  The camera still takes incredible images, but, sometimes it’s just the little things that make you smile.  Will I buy the new X-T2 when it comes out?  You bet!!  Who knows, it may even have a few more upgrades the X-Pro2 doesn’t have.

I’ve rambled on too long.  I’m retired now from my photography business, but, I would not hesitate to use either of my Fujis if given an assignment today.  They are that good and getting better.  Good Shooting!!