Initial Impressions of my new X-T2

I hope you have a few minutes to watch my unboxing video on youtube

New X-T2 on the left, X-T1 on the right. As you’ll note the numbers are brighter and seem thicker when compared to the X-T1
X-T2 with the 35 1.4 on the left. Note the taller, nicely knurled new knobs and locking center button (in the unlocked position)
Fresh Organic and Arabica coffee beans spill out of a small burl
One of the first 30 images with the X-T2 and my 35mm 1.4 lens for stock use.

. This is my first video of any kind, ever so it’s pretty bad with regards to quality but I was just so darn excited I had to shoot one. I even setup a youtube account just to post it. If you knew me you’d understand what a major feat that was as I don’t even like pictures – that’s why I’m a photographer, so I can be BEHIND the camera, not in front of it if at all avoidable.  If you want to see the video you can watch it here.

So, I received the X-T2 on Friday morning and since it’s been raining pretty much non-stop here it has not left the house yet. I did entertain myself and shoot some stock images, which BTW are already for sale at as of Saturday night.

Here are some initial impressions in some half-cocked, rambling way. First of all the finish of the faux leather is nicer. I know that word can mean so much, but if you feel it and the X-T1 you will note the difference in the texture. Next up is the taller, nicer knurled knobs on the camera. Taller is absolutley wonderful! I can’t thank Fuji enough for listening to photographers. I myself found that when changing ISO I would accidentally change the bottom switch from single shot to pano, or ch, or cl, etc., etc. Very frustrating but I learned to deal with it over time. Now on the X-T2 that problem is G.O.N.E. Forever! Heck, even with my pudgy fingers I can change settings either ISO, and/or shutterspeed and not mess up the settings. This I truly love. Second, I’m not sure if it is the fact that my X-T1 is now two years and seven months old, but the engraved numbers on the ISO, shutter speed, and over/under comp dials are so much brighter. Could my X-T1 have faded that much? I don’t know and time will tell I suppose, but they are definitely brigher and whiter. Before I move on to the oh so joyous joystick I want to comment on the four-way controller that was the bane of my existence on my T1… I hated it. Period.  Compared to my first X camera the X-E1 this was definitely a step down! Since I was one of the very early adopters of the X-T1 in February 2014 the buttons on my 4-way controller were, and are horrible. This was before Fuji fixed it later X-T1 production. How about on the X-T2 you ask? Oh My Goodness they are fantastic!!! Let me put it this way: if the X-T2 had not come with the new joystick I could care less! That is how much I love the new 4-way; it’s tactile, and raised so it makes using them a joy to use. I’ve assigned each one of the buttons a separate function in order to get the most use out of them! Seriously: It’s THAT good now. Speaking the joystick… OH JOY! Easily reachable when looking through the viewfinder, my thumb can find it in an instant to move it around! I currently have the camera set for “only” 91 focus points as I find the max number way too many and honestly I don’t need it at this point. The joystick is an amazing addition to say the least! Next up: the viewfinder. I though the X-T1 was bright and useful – nothing like the X-T2 viewfinder. When I first looked through it my first words out of my mouth were: Wow!  It’s that huge and bright! The refresh rate is oh so fast to me it looks like a regular optical viewfinder. Perfect. Now for what I consider the absolute bestest new “improvement” on this camera: The sound of the shutter. To describe it as silky, buttery, smooth still doesn’t explain it. You “HAVE” to experience it. The X-T1 sounds clunky next to the absolutely amazing “click” the X-T2 cranks out. It is to me one of the most amazing sounds I’ve heard coming from a shutter and I’ve used all types of cameras in my 30+ years. It’s that sweet!

Next up the Acros film simulation. Hallelujiah! I may finally, after switching to full digital from film back in 2002, actually have to stop converting in post and more currently I may be able to stop using Nik’s SilverEfex Pro 2.0. I can’t believe I just said that but it’s true. Even using Nik and LR to convert to BW I just couldn’t nail the look I wanted; with the Acros, and the Green filter I can actually get 95% there. Truly exceptional.

What I hate so far: the rear command dial. For example when using the self-timer I press the Q button, go to the option to select off, 2 or 10 seconds, then using my thumb I rotate the rear command dial to make my selection but the problem is my bit fat fingers put just a tad little pressure I accidentally press in. The press option on the command dials needs to be a bit stiffer (at least for me). I’m sure there is a way to turn that off (or so I hope) so if anyone out there knows how to disable the pressing of the command dial please, please let me know. It is waaaaay too sensitive for my taste. Honestly, so far that is my only complaint.

If you’ve noticed after getting this far I have not talked about image quality. Why? Because I have not done a side-by-side comparison between the X-T1 and the X-T2. In all honesty, I’ve taken about 35 images so far! And fifteen were a lifestyle shoot for stock. Now, with that having been said and on a full charge after shooting just about 31-32 images my battery was in the red zone. I know I was fiddling around with the menu’s and getting the camera setup but that is somewhat concerning even though I have seven batteries that I can carry with me. We’ll have to see how that develops.

I have been shooting uncompressed raw files that are 50.6mb in size (same size as my Lossless compressed, D800e files) compared to 33mb in the X-T1; There is some serious data in there! The jpeg files are oh so much larger as well which is a welcome change. Now, and only now am I comfortable submitting straight up jpeg’s out to the stock agents if I have to. If I process a raw file in Photoshop and save it as a tiff the file size heads up to 144mb. A very nice size with lots of details as storage prices have come down, and size and quality have gone up.

For comparison, I took a X-T2 processed (in LR) raw file and exported it as a jpeg; I then took a processed raw file (NEF) from my Nikon D800e (36mp) camera and did the same standard export as a jpeg. Now, keep in mind they were not of the same exact subject so size wise they may be different but the Nikon NEF exported from LR as a jpeg is 11.2 megabytes, and the X-T2 RAF file exported using the same export is 18.2 megabytes! Quite an eye-opening comparison if you ask me.   Again, different subjects, and one has slightly more detail than another but still way larger, albeit more details than the X-T1 RAF files when exported as a jpeg are “only” 8 mb on average.

So, for right now this is what I have to report. Once I actually take the camera out for a walk-around I’ll have more to say.


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