Fuji Maybe Fujifilm?

L0n3Gr3yW0lf

Regular
Location
Somerset, UK
Name
Ovi
Hello. I had the opportunity to use my first, proper, 35mm FF telephoto lens last Tuesday on a photo trip to a swannery. It was the first time I've been there and I decided to rent the Tamron 150-500mm f 5-6.3 Di III VC VXD lens for my Sony a7R II for 3 days. My first reaction to this lens was, the classical, this is HUGE and VERY HEAVY. My only telephoto lens experience was the Olympus 100-400mm f 5-6.3 (1.100 grams) and Panasonic's 100-300mm f 4-5.6 (520 grams), 45-200mm f 4-5.6 (380 grams) and 50-200mm f 2.8-4 (655 grams). So this lens alone was heavier than the heaviest lens and the camera combined.

To be honest, I feel that 2.5 KGs (camera and lens combined) is too much for everyday carry and hiking. The size would be manageable because it barely fits in my camera backpack either on its own or with the camera attached. As much as I love the IQ of the RAW files from Sony a7R II, for wildlife (which is 66% of my photography interest) the telephoto lenses are just too big and heavy.

I have been thinking about going back to Micro Four Thirds but I don't think I would be happy with the flexibility of the RAW files even with the advantage of 1 to 2 stops more light from the lenses like Panasonic Leica 200mm f 2.8 or Olympus 300mm f 4 Pro. (The new Olympus OM-1 looks very intriguing with its improvements in colour accuracy and rendition at ISO 3.200 and above). For Sony a6xxx cameras I'm just not a big fan of the ergonomics especially since I would have to use the FE lenses to get faster/better lenses than the Sony E 70-350mm f 4.5-6.3 G OSS.

So my last thought is Fujifilm because the Fujifilm XF 100-400mm f 4-5.6 R LM WR OIS floats for around 1.000 £ used, works with teleconverters and is the only other company that offers Pre-Burst like capabilities (AT AFFORDABLE PRICE!!!) is Fujifilm with the X-T3, X-T4 and X-S10. And to top it all off I can get my hands on a Fujifilm X-S10 body new for less than 1.000 £.
The only frustration I think I would have with the X-S10 is the very shallow buffer size for action wildlife, only 2 seconds with Pre-Burst JPEG and less with RAW at 20 FPS, and UHS-I only speed.
On the nice side is the possibility/(maybe even) probability of going JPEG only for the first time (with DR400 and the film simulations), very good grip for telephoto lenses compared to literally everything Fujifilm has made before, the prime lenses look very intriguing propositions, and at least 25% to possibly 50% less weight.

So far I have tried Pentax (my first ever camera more than 10 years ago), Panasonic (been with them for about 7 years), Olympus (mostly happy user for about 4 years) and Sony (for a few months). (I don't have much interest in Canon because they are the most expensive brand thus far, Sony can be as expensive but used their prices are a lot less than Canon R/RF stuff, and Nikon is not much on my radar because similar to Canon they tend to be pricey and don't let 3rd party manufacturers join in the fun of more competitive prices).

After reading some rumours on Tamron's potential release of their Tamron 17-70mm f 2.8 Di III-A VC RXD, Sigma could come out with their new-ish Sigma 18-50mm f 2.8 DC DN Contemporary it got me thinking that maybe there would be a chance for bringing telephoto lenses as well, like the Tamron 70-300mm f 4.5-6.3 and Sigma 100-400mm f 4-6.3 at a lower price and lighter-weight options.
Any ideas or contemplations anyone could provide? I am considering renting a Fujifilm camera and the XF 100-400mm f 4-5.6 or buying a first-generation X-T/X-E/X-Pro camera to see and play with the X-Trans look to images to see if I would be happy with that but I don't know if I can find the time to do that because of working so much this summer.
 
I use both Sony and Olympus (OM-1). There is no doubt FF telephoto lenses are large and heavy. I have the Sony 200-600 and 100-400. Both are excellent lenses but so are the Olympus telephotos. I regularly use the OM 100-400 and the 300. I also have the older Panasonic Leica 100-400 which has excellent image quality and is smaller than the Olympus version. Yes, the detail in the A7x series is addicting but many times I have to look at my EXIF data to see what I used for a particular image, Sony or Olympus. With MFT you can have a smaller telephoto with more reach so more of the subject is on the sensor. I keep both because I like both but for size and compactness, it is hard to beat MFT. I only have a Fuji X100V so I can't comment on their system. Oh, and the OM-1 AF for wildlife is quite amazing. It exceeded my expectations! Good luck!
 

L0n3Gr3yW0lf

Regular
Location
Somerset, UK
Name
Ovi
Well, I'm getting mad results with the X-S10 / XF70-300 / Topaz combination. The buffer can be an issue, but Fujifilm is announcing two new bodies tomorrow (with hopefully improved autofocus!) and at least one of them should work great for stills and also have two slots.
I was thinking of the XF 70-300mm f 4-5.6 but I wanted a bit more reach. I don't think I can afford the Fujifilm X-H2 and I have no interest in shooting video so having a fan attached to keep it cool is not something I would appreciate very much.
I use both Sony and Olympus (OM-1). There is no doubt FF telephoto lenses are large and heavy. I have the Sony 200-600 and 100-400. Both are excellent lenses but so are the Olympus telephotos. I regularly use the OM 100-400 and the 300. I also have the older Panasonic Leica 100-400 which has excellent image quality and is smaller than the Olympus version. Yes, the detail in the A7x series is addicting but many times I have to look at my EXIF data to see what I used for a particular image, Sony or Olympus. With MFT you can have a smaller telephoto with more reach so more of the subject is on the sensor. I keep both because I like both but for size and compactness, it is hard to beat MFT. I only have a Fuji X100V so I can't comment on their system. Oh, and the OM-1 AF for wildlife is quite amazing. It exceeded my expectations! Good luck!
Thanks, I've read a lot about the Olympus OM-1 and how it stacks up to Sony A1 (a dream camera to have). I have thought about the older Olympus E-M1 Mark II as a placeholder until the OM-1 goes down in price. I was surprised how much the E-M1X has fallen in price on the 2nd hand market after the release of the OM-1, MPB has it for around 800 £ after I couldn't find one cheaper than 1.600 £ last year.
 

John King

Member of SOFA
Location
Beaumaris, Melbourne, Australia
Name
John ...
@L0n3Gr3yW0lf Ovi, I even find my E-M1 MkII + FTs 50-200 MkI too heavy to carry around (~1.6 kgs), hence my purchase of the mFTs Olympus 75-300 MkII.

Look at Ronnie's (@Phocal) work using this combo (and/or E-Mx, I can't recall) compared with his f/4 300. Almost insignificant difference in IQ, but the 75-300 is too light, if anything. I use the electronic shutter with mine when at maximum FL to minimise my shake.

Personally, I find the E-M1 MkII perfectly adequate for all my uses.
It's very easy to spend a huge amount of money chasing the latest and greatest, only to find extremely minimal improvements in IQ ...
 

L0n3Gr3yW0lf

Regular
Location
Somerset, UK
Name
Ovi
@L0n3Gr3yW0lf Ovi, I even find my E-M1 MkII + FTs 50-200 MkI too heavy to carry around (~1.6 kgs), hence my purchase of the mFTs Olympus 75-300 MkII.

Look at Ronnie's (@Phocal) work using this combo (and/or E-Mx, I can't recall) compared with his f/4 300. Almost insignificant difference in IQ, but the 75-300 is too light, if anything. I use the electronic shutter with mine when at maximum FL to minimise my shake.

Personally, I find the E-M1 MkII perfectly adequate for all my uses.
It's very easy to spend a huge amount of money chasing the latest and greatest, only to find extremely minimal improvements in IQ ...
Thanks. After the last 2 years I found that my arms, my back and my feet and my knees have been affected really badly and I can't hold on steady as I used to. Weight has become quite a big factor to be careful with.
My disappointment with Oly E-M1 Mark III and Pany G9 was that at ISO 3.200 and above the colours get very smeared and bleeding between contrast details like feathers and structures, even skin tones start to look plastiky. And high ISO is a situation I find myself often wth the English weather where overcast really cuts down the light, especially unde trees and dense foliage.
Oly OM-1 might have solved that with their stacked sensor, need to get my hands on some RAW files at high ISO to test how well it handles exposure and sharpening.

APS-C seems to be the middle ground in terms of size, weight and IQ.

Ideally I would like a 200-ish to 600-ish zoom weather resistant lens and a fast 300\400 lens for low light, winter time and larger subjects. But only Micro Four Thirds makes affordable fast telephoto primes (less so with Fujifilm and none with Sony).
Olympus 75-300mm f 4.8-6.7 is quite a dark lens for Micro Four Thirds sensors, the Panasonic 100-300mm f 4-5.6 is brighter but the Panasonic 100-400mm f 4-6.3 and Olympus 100-400mm f 5-6.3 are just at bright but sharper at 300mm and go at 400mm without teleconvertor.
 

Darmok N Jalad

There are FOUR LIGHTS!
Location
Tanagra
I had an X-T3 and the XF 70-300 for a brief time. I didn't find my foray into Fuji to be all that big of a boost over M43, surprisingly. Don't get me wrong, I can see why the brand has a loyal customer base, and the X-T3 is darn near the perfect body IMO. It's a solid offering that can be fun and often rewarding, but I ended up going back to M43. I'm just happier with the sizes of everything, and it's a very comfortable format for me, and I also have a really good workflow established. The film sims are great on Fuji, with one pain point--if you want to change the result after the fact, you have to use X-Studio or do it in-camera, but either way you're using the camera for processing, and the battery life on the X-T3 is not great to begin with. It gets a bit slow and clunky, IMO--just enough that you find yourself making sure you pick the right sim to start, and you really got to want to change it. I wish Fuji would make that software something that doesn't require the camera to do the processing. I was hopeful that the sims cut down on my post processing, but it really didn't pan out that way.

Another consideration, RAFs aren't supported as well on some post processing software. DXO just added it, and I was surprised that PureRAW doesn't remove vignetting, as it's supposed to account for lens and body corrections. That can limit your post-processing options, or you need to do JPGs. Once you do JPGs, even if it's RAF+JPG, then you might find the higher ISO outputs are great on noise, but sharpness is just not quite there. Maybe my copy of the 70-300 was not good, but I found many shots to lack the sharpness I would expect to get, certainly wasn't as good as the O75-300. And that lens is really hard to come by, so you can't just swap it out easily.

If I were in your shoes, I'd rather try the OM1 and the 300 F4. That's just me, but I thought my recent adventure might be helpful in your experience. If I didn't shoot at the long end so much, I'd probably have stuck with Fuji. Live and learn, as they say.
 

John King

Member of SOFA
Location
Beaumaris, Melbourne, Australia
Name
John ...
Thanks. After the last 2 years I found that my arms, my back and my feet and my knees have been affected really badly and I can't hold on steady as I used to. Weight has become quite a big factor to be careful with.

It doesn't get any better, mate! I'm the proud owner of five buggered lumbar discs and ten buggered lumbar facet joints ... :( .
My disappointment with Oly E-M1 Mark III and Pany G9 was that at ISO 3.200 and above the colours get very smeared and bleeding between contrast details like feathers and structures, even skin tones start to look plastiky. And high ISO is a situation I find myself often wth the English weather where overcast really cuts down the light, especially unde trees and dense foliage.
I am more than happy with ISO 3200 in almost all situations and ISO 6400 if I get my exposure spot on. That's with JPEGs and NR off/lowest. RAW I will go to 12,800, but they need PP and PP NR at that.

If you shoot saturated, things get bad very quickly! I always shoot RAW + LSF JPEG. I shoot NATURAL, Sharpness = -2, Contrast = -1, Tone curve = NORMAL. I do not see those issues you are seeing, and my right, dominant eye still has 20/5 vision (corrected).

MFTs files do not tolerate getting in-camera exposure settings wrong ... i.e. you cannot "just fix it in post", which seems to be the norm for some people. Those latter will always be unhappy with mFTs.

Oly OM-1 might have solved that with their stacked sensor, need to get my hands on some RAW files at high ISO to test how well it handles exposure and sharpening.
DPR should have plenty of those.
APS-C seems to be the middle ground in terms of size, weight and IQ.
The "red headed step child", much as I love red hair! Only Fuji seem serious about native APS lenses ...
Ideally I would like a 200-ish to 600-ish zoom weather resistant lens and a fast 300\400 lens for low light, winter time and larger subjects. But only Micro Four Thirds makes affordable fast telephoto primes (less so with Fujifilm and none with Sony).
Olympus 75-300mm f 4.8-6.7 is quite a dark lens for Micro Four Thirds sensors, the Panasonic 100-300mm f 4-5.6 is brighter but the Panasonic 100-400mm f 4-6.3 and Olympus 100-400mm f 5-6.3 are just at bright but sharper at 300mm and go at 400mm without teleconvertor.
Long telephotos and low light just don't mix ...
Bad enough dealing with atmospheric pollution and turbulence.
 
I was thinking of the XF 70-300mm f 4-5.6 but I wanted a bit more reach. I don't think I can afford the Fujifilm X-H2 and I have no interest in shooting video so having a fan attached to keep it cool is not something I would appreciate very much.
I'm pretty sure that external cooling thing is going to be for shooting constant 8K video and for no other use case...but we'll find out tomorrow.
 

Darmok N Jalad

There are FOUR LIGHTS!
Location
Tanagra
MFTs files do not tolerate getting in-camera exposure settings wrong ... i.e. you cannot "just fix it in post", which seems to be the norm for some people. Those latter will always be unhappy with mFTs.
That is one thing I realized with the Fuji, you could bomb the exposure and still end up with a decent result. I was certainly more accustomed to getting exposure more on the button with M43. I think I had become accustomed to it and missed it. I liken the format to driving something like a Miata—not going to win at the drag strip, but you can have a ton of fun squeezing the most out of it and you can drive it most everyday.
 

gordo

All-Pro
Location
Arizona
Name
Gordon
I'm one of those oddballs with a partially broken body that works better with slightly larger and heavier gear. Helps with hand pain/ dexterity issues and stabilizes my tremors a bit. But, can't do the really heavy stuff and since I rarely spend a lot of time away from a spot to sit, not a big deal. The lighter the gear, the more the tremors affect shooting. The smaller the gear, the more difficult to use and more hand/ finger pain. But that's me, it's all relative and personal.

My current kit is Fuji, and it has been my main jam for about 4.5 years or so. I have an X-H1 with the 27/2.8 WR, 16-55/2.8, 90/2, and 100-400. Even though I had a good copy of the new 70-300, I preferred the 100-400. The 100-400 works quite well with the X-H1 IMHO. The IBIS/ OIS combo works well together, I've gotten some unrealistically slow shots with the two (well below the 1/focal length). I suspect improvements with IBIS make that even better. The only 80-100/ 100-400 I've personally used that was better was the Canon 100-400LmkII on a 7DmkII. The XF is better than both the old and new Nikkor 80-400s I owned back when shooting Nikon.

Haven't used the X-S10 as it would be too small for my hands and fingers, so I can't comment on how well the 100-400 works with it, or not.

The 100-400 should pair well with the X-T3/ 4.

Another option might be the rumored XF 150-600 that might be announced tomorrow. Not sure of the exact size/ weight/ cost as of yet. Might be too big/ heavy/ costly. And, it's supposedly an f/8 lens.

edit - full specs have leaked on some things. The 150-600 is an f/5.6-8, approx 99x315mm, 82mm filter thread, 1.6kg. Same filter thread as 100-400, slightly wider diameter and longer length and about 225g heavier. Rumor site has the info.
 
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Stu

Veteran
Location
Melb. Aus.
@L0n3Gr3yW0lf Ovi, I even find my E-M1 MkII + FTs 50-200 MkI too heavy to carry around (~1.6 kgs), hence my purchase of the mFTs Olympus 75-300 MkII.

Look at Ronnie's (@Phocal) work using this combo (and/or E-Mx, I can't recall) compared with his f/4 300. Almost insignificant difference in IQ, but the 75-300 is too light, if anything. I use the electronic shutter with mine when at maximum FL to minimise my shake.

Personally, I find the E-M1 MkII perfectly adequate for all my uses.
It's very easy to spend a huge amount of money chasing the latest and greatest, only to find extremely minimal improvements in IQ ...
I'm with John here as I find the EM1 ii, 75-300mm to be an excellent combo, particularly when looking at the cost/weight/IQ factors.

Personally I don't find the slow f/6.7 aperture a problem [ I find I need something like f/8 to get all of a bird more or less in focus @300mm]
I use 1250 ISO by default when shooting long so I can get the shutter speed up.....knowing I can clean up the noise pretty well in DeNoise or DXO Pro.

My wife uses a Fuji 70-300mm with a X1.4 converter which works really well and brings up the max focal length to 420mm [only a tad more than the Oly 75-300mm in real [APS-C] terms.
I have now fully switched from Fuji to M43 [multiple reasons] and I'm no longer seduced by the Fuji mystique.

Just on converters.......the X2 would obviously double the focal length of the 70-300 and the 100-400 but while I think the X1.4 is great I found [like a lot of people] that the X2 was disappointing.
The Fuji 100-400 is certainly on the heavy side.

In the end though it's a very subjective thing after one weighs up all one's needs balanced against size, weight, cost etc.
 
I recently purchased an X-T4 with the Tamron 18-300. If you do try a Fuji get a Fuji lens that gives dual IS.
After using Mu-43 gear the stabilisation on the combo I purchased is no good compared with the Mu-43 gear. I have to think about good technique again, what a pain :cry: First world problem I know.

I think my combo just uses lens stabilisation but no way of knowing as far as I can tell.

I used to think Olympus had too many menu options, but on the Fuji I miss some, like the ability to set the grid lines to what ever colour I like. not a deal breaker but something to be aware of.
 

rayvonn

Hall of Famer
Location
London
Nikon D500 and a Tamron 100-400 is probably worthy of consideration too. I’ve owned that lens, it’s not a beastly brick, hand held shots weren’t a problem and of course it has stabilisation if you need that. Really comes down to whether you find the camera too heavy.
 
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Darmok N Jalad

There are FOUR LIGHTS!
Location
Tanagra
One thing I really like on Fuji is that you can do individual setups for the EVF and rear display. I did the detailed display through the EVF, and the large font view on the rear display. I need reading glasses, and Fuji actually makes it easy to operate without them. Oh, and it’s cool to have the focal distance in the EVF, with focal plane notated. It’s not all perfect, but I found you could get a just-about-right level of customization.

Down sides? I didn’t take to the dial setup like I thought. They are just far enough out of reach that adjusting while viewing through the EVF was a little tough. You can use the other dials to accomplish this, but I found them a little hard to operate without triggering their button press. But it all ties into my comment about exposure, you didn’t need to get just the right shutter or ISO to get a workable image. There is just more flexibility in the sensor, where full stops are good enough.

The idea of aperture dials on the lenses sounds nice, but I’m not much of an aperture adjuster, and it’s not a mechanical dial. Also, variable aperture zooms don’t have the numbers, so you can actually find yourself stopping down on accident.
 

L0n3Gr3yW0lf

Regular
Location
Somerset, UK
Name
Ovi
Thanks for the info, I don't have problems reading up close but from the distance I'm about the same level as Steve Wonders when Bush was waving at him. Having the -4 Dioptric Correction is awesome. I don't know how deep is the eye relief on the X-S10 but I'm hoping it's far enough to see the entire frame, and having a smaller 0.68x EVF helps with wearing glasses.
I do like the idea of having a focal plane distance in the EVF, does it stay active with the Histogram as well?

X-S10 has a more traditional dials so it won't be to hard to get used to them but even with an X-T3 or X-T4 I think I might be fine, I can use the finger and thumb dials instead for shutter speed and ISO. I actually live aperture ring on the lens even if it's not mechanical, I've used so many and so much film lenses that I'm used to having one. For wildlife I always shoot wide open to maintain shutter speed and lower ISO, for landscape I can be slow enough to switch from f 5.6 to f 8 and I rarely go smaller then that, for street I love the tactile option of dedicated dials just because it makes me feel like having fun (as long as I dont get to many weird looks from people, if that happens I have enough anxiety to make a Roman army route with fear).

From what I've seen Fujifilm's X-Trans 26 MegaPickleRicks sensor has around 4 stops of shadow recovery and 2 stops of highlights recovery. I tend to underexpose images by default to avoid highlight clipping and bring back the shadows in post but I do enjoy a bit darker\contrastier image as well. At least for digital screen presentation, for print I need to go a bit brighter (about 2\3rds to a stop depending on the paper type, I love both luster and glossy paper).
That's quite close to my Sony a7R II, though I am sure that passed ISO 3.200 the Sony will maintain lower noise and better colours when pushing RAW files.
 

pdk42

Veteran
Location
Royal Leamington Spa, UK
Name
Paul
A few comments from me…

- I’m a m43 fan (Olympus). I’ve tried Sony and Nikon FF (a7rii and Z7) but found neither to offer enough of a practical IQ gain to offset the extra size and weight, nor the lack of features compared to Olympus cameras.

- I tried Fuji X back in the XE1 days and hated its raw file rendering on foliage and landscape (but loved the lenses).

- I got one of the first batch of OM1s but had issues with SAF so returned it. However, I had it long enough to realise that its raw file IQ is no better than the EM1.3. Many other things are much better (esp AF), but IQ is not a reason to upgrade.

- For wildlife shooting in m43, tools like DxO and Topaz are game changers. If you haven’t tried them, then do. You may find that m43 at ISO 6400 is good enough after all.
 

serhan

Hall of Famer
Location
NYC
I am using m43 with Pana 100-400mm and I found also there is not much improvement with the noise levels Oly RIII versions esp when I used in winter on short / dark days ....

Longest and lightest Sony I can use is 70-350mm f4-6.3 apsc that is not that long....

The cheapest and small long tele is Canon RF 100-400mm f5.6-8 @ 635g & $650 that will replace my m43 long range and it accepts 1.4x tele but 1.4x is not cheap.... I am not shooting much tele these days, so it is a good compromise for size and weight esp for travels... I don't know Canon R7/R10, but R5 IBIS with tele OS lenses are as good as m43 IBIS.... But then Canon keeps its dslr heritage which makes Fuji cameras look better...
 

L0n3Gr3yW0lf

Regular
Location
Somerset, UK
Name
Ovi
A few comments from me…

- I’m a m43 fan (Olympus). I’ve tried Sony and Nikon FF (a7rii and Z7) but found neither to offer enough of a practical IQ gain to offset the extra size and weight, nor the lack of features compared to Olympus cameras.

- I tried Fuji X back in the XE1 days and hated its raw file rendering on foliage and landscape (but loved the lenses).

- I got one of the first batch of OM1s but had issues with SAF so returned it. However, I had it long enough to realise that its raw file IQ is no better than the EM1.3. Many other things are much better (esp AF), but IQ is not a reason to upgrade.

- For wildlife shooting in m43, tools like DxO and Topaz are game changers. If you haven’t tried them, then do. You may find that m43 at ISO 6400 is good enough after all.
Thanks, I have been using Topaz DeNoise AI for 2 years now (but I am refusing to "upgrade" to a the latest version because I don't want to pay for it, I am not seeing enough difference to justify the cost). I pass most of my images through it because even at low ISO it smooths out the out of focus area really well even of my Sony a7R II.
But for whatever reason the only 2 options that work with my laptop is the Clear and the Standard one, and I tend to use the Clear one more often. But at high ISO (when I did have my Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III, like 3.200 and 6.400, Topaz can't manage to clean the out of focus area very well and it smears large blobs of strange colours, and it's worse in winter pictures when there's a lot of muddy green and brown.
It's an amazing tool but not always the best solution.

I've heard and seen that DXO's PhotoLab 4 does better with their AI Noise Reduction but I'm having trouble changing my workflow after so many years (and probably because of my OCD as well).
 
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