Hasselblad made all of the waves earlier this year with their announcement of the X1D, the first true mirrorless medium format digital camera. But the interesting thing about that announcement was the surprise of the community, who had long pegged Fujifilm as the likely ‘first’ to release such a camera – and stated that research was being done.
But the reports have persisted, and to a degree have gotten stronger since the Hasselblad announcement, coming to a head over this past weekend when new reports indicated that Fujifilm will in fact announce its own mirrorless medium format system – complete with a camera and 3 lenses, on September 19th, just in time to blow some industry minds as all eyes point towards Germany and Photokina.
As always though, don’t go making any decisions based on this post– nothing is official until announced, but this could be a very big deal if it turns out to be as the information suggests. Not only because it would mean a second mirrorless medium format offering, but because if they are correct, the camera body is expected to cost somewhere $2-$3,000 less than the Hasselblad X1D, which, if you are keeping track, would place this mirrorless medium format camera body in the realm of Canon’s 1DX or Nikon’s D5. Essentially, this would be a major step for the industry, bringing medium format digital into the realm of affordability to your average DSLR toting professional.
Also notable is that the to-be-named Fujifilm medium format digital will reportedly have an SLR styling and look, unlike the Hasselblad offering. If it is anything like the higher end X-Series cameras, the X-T2 for example, it could be another feather in its cap. Many mirrorless shooters love and choose Fujifilm in part for their excellent style and that vintage design aesthetic. If the new medium format system continues with those ideals, it would not only set the system apart on price, but also on style. This could help it appeal to those high-end medium format film holdouts, especially if Fujifilm brings its famous film simulations and color rendition up from the X-Series.
Along with the camera, it is expected that three lenses (two primes and a zoom) will be announced along with the camera body. This should set the basis for a solid system when it all becomes available in 2017 – or so the rumors are saying. It will be very interesting to see how this pans out. Photokina 2016 always has some major announcements, and this would certainly fit that bill.
Stay tuned, we will for sure be following this one very closely.