An update to the news that Fujifilm plans to continue the X-H series, this time from an interview with Mr. Toshihisa Iida, General Manager of Fujifilm’s Optical Device and Electronic Imaging Products Division by dpreview, confirming what Mr. Takashi Ueno said in a previous interview to The Map Times.
X-T4: They were going to call it X-T3S.
Pheww! While most other camera manufacturers were adding the “S” to indicate increased Sensitivity (i.e. better low-light performance by reducing the number of megapixels and using bigger photosites, like in the Sony A7S and Panasonic GH5S), that “S” would have been SSSSSO confusing. Good call in upping it to the X-T4.
GFX100: Selling better than expected, especially to the “fashion, commercial and landscape photographers, but now we’re getting interest from more industrial photographers, for example for aerial and archival purposes.” Next, improved autofocus.
X-Mount: Now opened to third-party lens manufacturers.
X-H series: Confirmation that it will continue, and “the concept will be very different to the X-T series.”
Read our opinion after the fold.
Concerning the X-H series, can Fujifilm differentiate it enough from the X-T series? Remember, any technological improvements that they put into the X-H series to make it their flagship mirrorless camera will inevitably find their way into the X-T series, like IBIS quickly did, so that both lines end up looking the same after a very short while.
We believe that Fujifilm will eventually rethink their refusal to introduce a full-frame mirrorless camera. The lack of detail over just HOW the X-H series will differ in concept from the X-T series perhaps is an indication that the X-H series DNA is still being formulated. Yes, they did consider MFT, APS-C and full-frame back when they were deciding on the best sensor fromat to use, and eventually decided to go with APS-C. But, these were early days, and Sony had not yet shown how a pro full-frame mirrorless camera could be made smaller than APS-C, and even MFT, mirrorless cameras. Technology advancements in camera bodies now make it very desirable to have a full-frame camera. Future technological advances in lens development will make it moot discussing size and weight of camera/lens combo based on sensor size. When that happens (and how many times have we heard that such and such feature/funtionality was technically impossible), not having a full-frame camera in the mix means being out of the race.
Fujifilm has currently pretty much locked up the medium-frame (GFX100) and APS-C (X-T4) mirrorless, as well as Premium Compact (X100V), segments. These are the most coveted cameras, bar none — cameras that photographers really love to use.
Only the full-frame (X-H2) segment remains to be tackled and, if Fujifilm engineers apply their mind and ingenuity to this, imagine how the full-frame mirrorless camera could be redefined — and how much joy it would bring to the world of photography!
But, can Fujifilm handle four different categories? Regardless, we believe that only full-frame can clearly differentiate the X-H series from the X-T series. And pro photographers will welcome that.