Two years ago in a meeting with Fujifilm, I asked the Marketing Director for Fujifilm USA if anything like 24mm focal length at f1.4 would be coming our way. She very clearly stated “No.” Lo and behold though, Fujifilm announced the 16mm f1.4 lens earlier on and we foundnd it at our doorsteps. This is the company’s first weather sealed prime lens and with the 1.5x crop factor comes out to 24mm f2.1 when translating it into full frame depth of field and equivalency.
Like their other wide angle primes, Fujifilm gave this lens a snap back manual focus ring to make it more appealing to street photographers and candid shooters. We’ve had the chance to play with the new lens for a few days now, and so far it’s shaping up to be one of our favorites.
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Today, Fujifilm is announcing two new additions to their X series lineup: the 90mm f2 and the rumored X-T10. First up, we’re most excited about the company’s new 90mm f2 Super EBC XF that has weather sealing incorporated into the body. The lens has seven aperture blades, 11 elements in 8 groups, can focus as close as 24 inches and on the 1.5x crop camera bodies gives you a true 135mm field of view with an equivalent full frame depth of field of f3 when shooting wide open.
You’ll probably never want to stop this lens down anyway, though you’ll surely need to so that you can get your subject in focus.
Then there is the X-T10, which is a stripped down version of the X-T1 and targeted at the enthusiast. Prices and tech specs are all after the jump.
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Lots of folks will tell you that you should always focus on the eyes when shooting a portrait. Why? Because eyes are the metaphorical windows to the soul. It’s very easy for those photographers to also get caught up in shooting portraits with their lenses wide open all the time.
Don’t do that–especially when working with portraits.
If you’re shooting a portrait and the eyes are all that’s in focus, you’re not giving your portrait subject more depth. Instead, try stopping down just a little bit to ensure that the eyes are not only tack sharp but that you also have a bit more in focus–like their face. Sure, the eyes can tell you a lot but so too can the face.
With Fujifilm’s X series interchangeable lens cameras, you don’t need to stop down a lot. Because of the 1.5x crop factor of the APS-C X Trans sensor, you’ll have more in focus at a given aperture than you will with a full frame camera. That means that at f1.2 on the 56mm f1.2 lens, you’ll have the equivalent depth of field of 1.2 x 1.5 which = f1.8’s equivalent depth of field with a full frame camera. So try getting more of your subject in focus rather than just concentrating on just their iris.
For even better results, use Fujifilm’s Astia film rendering. This film was developed for portraiture due to the soft colors and the way that it handles skin tones. We’d also be doing you lots of injustice if we told you to not worry about lighting. Backlighting your subject is often a great method, but try to go for softer light like that from a window.
Xpert Advice is a monthly collaboration between the Phoblographer and Fujifilm designed to teach you photography tips and tricks in a bite-sized package.
It was only a matter of time until Fujifilm tried to play off of the success that the X-T1 gave them. At least that’s what’s to be believed if Mirrorless Rumors is indeed correct. From what it looks like, the camera is in a similar SLR style camera body but stripped down for the more entry level crowd. For starters, Fujifilm has removed the ISO dial on top and replaced it with a mode dial. But otherwise, lots of the X-T1’s features seem to be present. Also note that it is stated to come kitted with an XC lens–which Fujifilm states aren’t as high end as their other X series lenses. The full run down of specs is after the jump.
So does this have any validity? It makes a lot of sense with Fujifilm consistently feeling out their market. We’re bound to see an upgrade to the X Pro 1, X100T, and XE-2 this year. But then consider their other cameras like the XA-1 and the X30–does this seem familiar to you?
Years ago, Sony released a whole load of cameras to feel out the market and effectively build their fleet. With years in, they’re pretty much got it settled but may experiment more. Fujifilm’s strategy is more akin to what Olympus does though–loads of cameras with the same sensor and where the big differences are essentially just the feature set and camera body design. In terms of a profit standpoint, it seems to work; and Fujifilm may release the Fujifilm X-T10 and maybe even a 100 series underneath it that is even more stripped down.
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Fujifilm X-T1 users are being treated to a massive firmware update coming this June–and it’s designed to highly improve the autofocus performance. According to Fujifilm, it’s going to include a new autofocus system with zone and wide/tracking mode that can go from 3×3, 3×5 or 5×5 along the 77 focusing points. According to Fujifilm, the firmware update is also supposed to improve tracking focus performance substantially.
But the firmware is bringing other Autofocus performance goodies too, like improvements to single focusing point abilities–which now divides the focus area into smaller sections to more accurately determine the distance to the subject for even greater focusing accuracy. Additionally, the built-in phase detection pixels have increased sensitivity from 2.5EV to 0.5EV.
If you’re a portrait shooter, the system is also getting eye-focusing which lets the system detect an eye and focus specifically on that. Even more, an Auto Macro function is coming that automatically switches the camera into the Macro mode while maintaining the conventional auto focus speed. That means you no longer have to press the Macro button to initiate a close-up shot.
The update is coming in late June 2015, and you should also check out our Fujifilm X-T1 review.
Model: Erica Lourde
Portrait lenses are an interesting topic due to the balance that’s needed with them. They need to be sharp, but if they’re too sharp, they can make skin look too detailed and not soft. Sure, this can be fixed in post-production but it’s often long and arduous work, and needs to be very exacting so that the images don’t look overdone or unnatural.
For that reason, we aren’t at all saying that sharp lenses aren’t good. In fact, they’re great! Many of them have won our Editor’s Choice awards. Instead, we’re saying that these lenses find a good balance between being very detailed with great image quality but not so detailed to the point where you’ll see way too much of the pores. When used in conjunction with modern image sensors, these lenses will make portrait shooting much easier.
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