Fuji X-Pro2 — Samples, Edits, and First Impressions

Reviews

After one day of use, here are my first impressions of the Fuji X-Pro2:

Pros:

  1. Fastest shutter of any Fuji X camera — the X-T1 seemed to have a delay.
  2. Great analog controls — especially the joystick.
  3. Image quality is awesome and more like the original X-Pro1 than the X-T1 (i.e. more detail, less waxy skin tones).
  4. Uses the fastest SD-Cards available and makes for quick saving of images and playback.
  5. Autofocus is better than any other Fuji.

Cons:

  1. The shutter / ISO combo knob is silly, I prefer a dedicated knob for each like on the X-T1.
  2. EVF and LCD suck in comparison to the competition. They’re not the worst ever, but the X-T1 is nicer, also the EVF and display on my Panasonic GX8 smokes it. It’s really too bad that in the years since the original X-Pro1 they didn’t opt for a more expensive solution. I would have gladly paid more for a tilting OLED display and a top of the line OLED EVF. Fuji opted for TFT displays as opposed to the aforementioned OLED, here’s a technical page explaining the pros and cons of each. After reading it, you’ll see that OLED would have been a better choice http://www.appliancedesign.com/articles/93121-selecting-the-best-lcd-display-for-your-product-oled-vs-tft.
  3. Maybe this is just my opinion, but the optical viewfinder / parallax is stupid and inaccurate. I’ll stick with the EVF and on screen. I watched a review of the X-Pro2 a few weeks ago put out by The Camera Store and their opinion was much the same as my own.
  4. Lost the custom menu settings twice — this seems to be a known issue and might either be the internal battery needing charging or a firmware issue.
  5. The menu system is stupid. It took me ten minutes to find “format.”

The pros outweigh the cons for me. Speed and image quality set this camera apart from it’s predecessors. If the yet to be announced X-T2 retains the joystick, the image quality, and the speed of the X-Pro2, but adds a better EVF and tilting screen, then I’ll sell the X-Pro2 and buy the X-T2. Who knows if and when that will happen at all. In the meantime, the X-Pro2 is the best X series camera available.

Below are some samples from today. The first image of each set, is the one straight out of the camera (resized for the web), and the second one has been edited using Athentech’s Perfectly Clear — it’s a quirky program, but the results speak for themselves. It’s just a nice way to give the image a boost in shadows, brighten the eyes, and just give the images a little pop. It’s not a substitute for shooting raw, but it is a time saver. I actually shot these in raw+JPEG and there was no reason to edit the raw files.

Technologically, the X-Pro2 is really a two steps forward, one step sideways kind of camera. They improved upon the crucial stuff like focusing, controls, and image quality, but fell short on things like the electronic displays (they should have made the price a little higher and made the camera much better). I’m still undecided on the new ISO dial, I prefer the ISO dial on my X-T1.

In conclusion, ergonomically, I still prefer the X-T1. EVF and LCD wise, I still prefer the X-T1. However, focusing wise (especially with the joystick), performance wise, and especially image quality wise, the choice is clear, the X-Pro2 is where it’s at for now. My X-T1 is now for sale on Craigslist.


Noah Bershatsky

Noah Bershatsky

I was a nerd before hipsters were cool.
https://bershatsky.com

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