Photography News | Issue 35 | absolutephoto.com
The X-T2 has landed Fujifilm’s latest CSC is designed to cope with all subjects including fast action and it’s its first 4K-video capable camera
The EF-X500 is a dedicated hotshoe flashgun for Fujifilm X-series cameras. Priced at £449.99, it will be available from September. It is a powerful, weather-sealed unit with a GN of about 50 and the auto zoom head covers lenses from 16mm to 65mm, wider is possible with the supplied diffuser. Features include TTL functionality and FP flash which pulses flash rapidly for correct flash sync at high shutter speeds. The EF-X500 also supports multiple flash set-ups. Power is supplied by four AA cells and an optional EF-BP1 is available for £169.99 and this accepts eight cells for faster recycling. Fujifilmadds a flash
The Fujifilm X-T2 is a mirrorless CSC with a centrally positioned viewfinder for DSLR-style handling. That is enhanced by its design and layout with control dials playing a large part in camera usage. Two key dials, the ISO and shutter speed, have been redesigned to feature one-push locks for more assured, improved handling. The X-T2 is based around a 24.3-megapixel CMOS III X-Trans sensor (the same sensor is used on the X-Pro2) that delivers excellent image quality even at high ISO settings and gives the option of shooting 4K video using the camera film simulation modes. The X-T2’s AF system represents a significant step up from its predecessor. The phase detection AF sensor is now larger with 91 (switchable to 325) AF zones and uses an improved algorithm to cope with tricky subjects like those featuring delicate or indistinct textures. The AF system is also capable of dealing with fast action too and its continuous focusingmode features five custom Presets or ‘case studies’ to suit different subject types. With these settings the tracking sensitivity, speed tracking sensitivity and zone area switching are tailored to deal with different situations. For instance, Preset 4 is for suddenly appearing subjects and Preset 5 is for erraticallymoving subjects. There is a sixth custom setting so that you can set up your own parameters to suit the movement characteristics of your subject.
The AF system benefits with the inclusion of an AF lever or joystick which makes moving the active AF point in the frame a quick and more convenient process. Key to the X-T2’s handling is its electronic viewfinder. Its 2.36 million dot EVF is said to be twice as bright as the X-T1’s and has an auto brightness function to help you see the image in all lighting conditions. Compared with the X-T1, the X-T2 has a reduced blackout time making it easier to track moving subjects as you pan. The basic camera body has a shooting rate of 8fps with the mechanical shutter (14fps with the electronic shutter), but add the optional Vertical Power Booster VPB-XT2 grip (£299.99) and you increase this to 11fps. In Boost mode, this grip also reduces shutter release lag and gives a shorter blackout time. The grip also houses two batteries and with the third one in the camera, there is shooting capacity of over 1000 frames. An important innovation is the camera’s dual SD slots. Card failure is rare, but when it does happen you don’t get any warning and having that option for peace of mind is very welcome. The X-T2 is expected in the shops in September at £1399 body only, but meanwhile you can read more about it in our hands-on preview later in this issue.
Adrian Clarke, senior vice president, electronic imaging FujifilmEurope
It’s a good day for portrait, fashion and low-light photographers with the announcement of Nikon’s new AF-S Nikkor 105mm f/1.4E ED. It joins Nikon’s fleet of fast f/1.4 primes, and is currently the only 105mmAF lens available with the f/1.4 aperture. Its huge light- gathering capabilities allow you to work in available light or in the studio with ease, while the optical construction claims to produce unrivalled edge-to-edge sharpness and clarity even when shooting wide open thanks to its three extra-low dispersion (ED) elements. A nine-bladed aperture design should decrease diffraction and provide rounded bokeh and smooth transitions with no rough edges. The ‘E’ in the lens’s title means an electromagnetic aperture mechanism is on board to give more stable autoexposure control. Nikon’s tried and tested Silent Wave Motor is used for brisk, quiet and accurate autofocus. Nikon’s engineers have apparently paid particular attention to the edges of the picture frame, so that distortion and flare are minimised and light sources are rendered as fine rounded points. The Nikkor 105mm f/1.4E ED will be available from the end of August at a suggested price of £2049.99. Nikon’s newarrival Nikonadds to its fast lens rangewithanAF-S 105mm f/1.4E ED
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“We launched the X-T1 in March 2014 and it’s been a very successful product for us. Users loved the design, the new electronic finder, the intuitive operation, but most of all the image quality. At the same time, we introduced the XF56mm f/1.2 and XF10-24mm f/4 lenses. That expanded the shooting field of X-series to portrait, wedding and landscape. We think expanding the shooting field was the one reason that X-T1 was so successful. “Since then we have been working on the X-T1’s successor. Developing such a sophisticated camera with such processing power is a huge task. The processor alone took two years to develop and program. This has culminated in the birth of the X-T2. “With the X-T2, we hope to expand the usage of X-series to almost any subject you care to try to shoot. “We’ve also tried very hard to cover every requirement of today’s photographer, and we realised that our video functionality and quality was one of our weaker points. The XT-2 doesn’t just give 4K resolution, but really excellent image quality in 4k. We have HDMI output and new video standby mode. We also have Film Simulation in video, which is particularly fantastic in ACROS black & white mode. “The Vertical Power Booster Grip can house two additional batteries, helping increase capacity to around 1000 frames between charges. It also adds a headphone socket and a Boost switch that improves responsiveness and ups the frame rate to 11fps. “So in summary, we are very pleased to launch a second flagship camera alongside the X-Pro2. Some may prefer the rangefinder or optical style of the X-Pro2, some may prefer the SLR and large EVF-style of the X-T2.”
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