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Saturday, 10 February 2018

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I love how Nokishita Camera's logo is a cat. If I could read Japanese, I'd buy from them!

"The camera is moderately larger than the X-T2 and slightly bigger even than Sony's full-frame A7etc. cameras."

But the A7II is smaller than the X-T2...

No love for the excellent IBIS which has been standard in Pentax for centuries..?

(Ok, maybe only this century. The current zeitgeist is clearly having an impact on me.)

Of course, it is Fuji, which has earned a solid reputation for not being able to do anything wrong since the X100 was into'd in 2012, and the company has the advantage of being able to analyze existing products on the market . . .

The failure to include an exposure-compensation dial looks to me like a misstep. I suspect I'm not unusual among Fuji shooters in considering this a very important feature of my X-E2 and X-T2 cameras. Eliminating it also seems to run contrary to Fuji's design philosophy for the X-series cameras of providing mechanical controls for the most common adjustments.

I was a Pentax (K7) user for quite a while but I eventually ditched it because I was suspicious of unpredictable focus results, even with top of the range lenses. The engineering credentials of IBIS may be well established, but I could never help wonder that a jiggly sensor might just not be a good thing... Of course I have no evidence...

By contrast, ny experience of IS lenses (Canon in my case) was nothing short of amazing. Trouble was they were too big for me eventually, but if my life depended on getting a photo......

A parting comment regarding the forthcoming X-H1:

I'm not planning on buying an X-H1, but I very likely will rent one for shooting one of my races in 2018. I'm not interested at all in the IBIS functionality, but what I am interested in is to see where Fuji has been able develop 3 key attributes as it relates to shooting motor racing: 1) overall responsiveness 2) EVF blackout time and 3) AF performance.

Overall responsiveness is important for going from "sleep to wake/ready" for shooting as well as it's tangential contribution to frame rate and viewfinder blackout time.

EVF blackout time is important for accurately tracking very fast moving subjects. This particularly important in motorsports photography for tracking racing cars in a panning side-shot where, for example, they are going past you at over 150mph. The X-T2, with its power battery grip, does a decent job at this, but honestly, this is a scenario where even pro DSLRs can struggle; its all dependent on how you close are to the car when it goes past, and at some corners, I'm pretty dang close. So, if the X-H1's performance in this regard is better than an X-T2's with battery grip, this will represent another notable step forward.

The third subsystem I'd want to evaluate is AF system performance, which is actually comprised of five different autofocus subfunctions: AF aquisition, AF lock, AF tracking, AF "hold while tracking", and by far the hardest one, "AF hold while tracking when the race car is rapidly accelerating away from the camera" (even pro Canon bodies really struggle with this). The last two is how the AF system works on different colored cars (yes, they all perform differently on different colors), or "hot track syndrome", where the considerable infrared light coming up off a very hot race track can completely fool even the best phase-detection AF systems. On the whole, I've been quite impressed with the X-T2's AF performance when using the vertical power battery grip, but AF can always be better, and I find in some situations the X-T2 can lose AF lock when a very rapidly moving car is closing on me at well over 100 mph, and gets very close to the camera. If the X-H1 represents improvements over the X-T2 in these categories, this will inform me that Fuji is continuing to make improvements in these key attributes, and that the X-T3 will likely be better in this regard as well. I should point out that this kind of stuff is VERY HARD to do from an engineering perspective, and even the big guns can get this completely wrong, like Canon did with the 1D MkIII, which was an AF disaster for them and drove many pros to the Nikon D3.

Frame rate is not an issue: the 11 FPS the X-T2 has is overkill, and like most motorsports shooters, I employ a "double-tap" approach. I don't need 11 frames of Alex Rossi in a corner, I only need one. This saves on the no. of frames requiring reviewing back in the media center, but much more importantly, it preserves shutter actuation life, which is really important to pros, but something you never read about in reviews. This confirms once again that the things pros are concerned about when working in the real world are generally completely different than what reviewers or photo forum "specs geeks" are concerned about.

@Chris Kern: Wait for the X-T3, it will have the physical expsoure comp dial on the top deck, just as it is on the X-T2. Fuji had sound reasons for putting the LCD display in place of the comp dial for the X-H1, just as they did with the GFX; its a different tool for a different job.

Judging from the comments by Stephen and Steve, it would seem that IBIS has some drawbacks. At the same time, we're trying to deal with Mike's perception that he really needs IBIS. Since he already has an m4/3 camera, wouldn't the ideal solution for Mike be to use the two very sharp Lumix G f2.8 OIS (optical image stabilized) lenses that go all the way down to a 12-35 (24-70 equiv) and up to a 35-100 (70-200 equiv) plus adding the excellent Leica/Panny 45 DG Macro-Elmarit Mega-OIS as the "inside lens" for portraits and macro work? He'd then have three stabilized lenses for a camera he already owns, and that fulfill his three-lens outside-inside diktat. Huh?

[Wait, why are "we" dealing with Mike's perception that he really needs IBIS? I thought I was the only one dealing with that. :-) And I don't own a Micro 4/3 camera currently. I do still own the older 12-35mm and 45mm Macro, though. --Mike]

As nice as the X-H2 sounds, I'll probably go for the X-T2 since my Fuji gear is rarely used for video. Besides, I think I'd prefer a camera that's a bit smaller and lighter - but not as small as the X-T20. My other Fujis are an X-Pro2 and an original X100. The X-T3? Perhaps. But it's not likely to be introduced for months yet and the X-T2's performance and autofocus seem to meet my current needs.

I have read several times today, once reading a review of the Panasonic G9, and again in the comments here, how "massively bigger" APS-C is than m4/3. Have people never looked at the numbers, but just read online reviews? In the short dimension m4/3 is only slightly smaller, and in the long dimension APS-C is admittedly longer, but often this part gets cropped. I do not think APS is "massively" bigger than m4/3. In reviews it sounds like they are acting like m4/3 is the size of 1 inch sensors. Am I wrong?

[I think Stephen was comparing Micro 4/3 to full frame, and the "significantly more massive" comment applied to the sensor itself, which has to be physically moved very quickly and precisely for IBIS to work. --Mike]

@Ken James: Just for clarification, I never said that APS-C or FF sensors were "massively bigger" than M4/3. I said that they had more mass than M4/3 sensors. There is a big difference between the terms "massively bigger" and "increased mass" from a physics and engineering perspective; they are completely different things.

Mass is defined as "the property of matter that measures its resistance to acceleration".

The sensor mass is what needs to be stabilized, not its size (i.e. "bigger"), and more mass is harder to stabilize than less mass, and thus the additonal amount of stabilization control required is likely to be a quadratic or cubic transfer function rather than a linear transfer function. In other words, even a small increase in one dimension may require considerably more control than a simple "linear" degree of stabilization improvement, especially when said control needs to be over 5 axes.

“Wait, why are "we" dealing with Mike's perception that he really needs IBIS? I thought I was the only one dealing with that. :-)“

Because you’ve mentioned it at least 9 times in last 6 months :)

"Olympus got around this by allowing Sony to take a stake in the company, giving them access to the Sony license."

Source please. The stake was purchased in September 2012, months after the 5-axis system debuted in the first EM-5.

How it's done, a salutary lesson in business;- Sony bought a 51% share of Olympus when they were down after their financial scandal a few years ago. They helped themselves to the IBIS copyrights then promptly sold the shares. I'd lay money that Olympus and Panasonic then came to terms about IBIS to strengthen their joint M43 platform against Sony et al. What I wonder now is whether Fuji did the same and sidled up to Sony for their copy? After all they don't directly compete with the FF Sony's.

The original IBIS patent is from HP. It got to Pentax because Pentax was HP's camera manufacturing partner.

I have found excellent results using an Olympus E-M1 and IBIS with prime lenses up to 75mm. I have also had very good results with the inexpensive 40-150mm zoom. I went for micro 4/3 to get away from the giant sized hand held cameras and big lenses that were everywhere. The IBIS bonus makes me wonder how many acceptably sharp photos I get with my "tiny" sensor that someone with a larger sensor camera can't get without purchasing a stabilized lens. Kind of eliminates some of the benefit of the larger sensor.

Mike, it's good to hear tidbits on image stabilization - aka shake reduction.

What you get with Pentax is, easy access to the world of M42 screwmount lenses, including Takumars, Carl Zeiss and kindred German makers from the 1960s into the 1980s and beyond - I have a late Zeiss 135mm from 1992 or so in the screwmount mount. A few from the 1950s and from Russia and elsewhere behind the Iron Curtain also.

Since I'm a manual focus fan, and enraptured in general by that era of great glass and high engineering standards, I'm at home there now. Shake reduction gives me stability with these classic old lenses that photographers back in the day could only dream of - four to five stops extra handheld leeway makes a big difference in my keeper rate.

I've not been tempted by other alternatives. Modernity? Who cares! Happiness just might consist in finding what works for you and hewing to it faithfully. I feel so lucky to have found this combination, modern Pentax DSLR plus classic M42 lenses using a simple adapter, and getting great pictures time and time again.

Good luck in finding your path - and in exploring many paths, if that is your restless thrill.

Jeff Clevenger

Excellent article by Ming Thein on image stabilization:

https://blog.mingthein.com/2016/08/19/stabilisation-is-good-but-only-up-to-a-point/

Some additional info from Louis Ferreira at Fuji Addict regarding the X-H1's IBIS system:

"The Fujifilm X-H1’s IBIS system uses three-axial acceleration sensors and a dual-processor to measure about 10,000 calculations per second. This requires the camera to be built to twice as high of a degree of precision as a conventional camera. The IBIS system also partially relies on the electronic first curtain shutter of the X-H1 and might benefit from the roughly 25% thicker magnesium body than the Fujifilm X-T2, which is already very well built."


I’m excited! I Got the XT1 for a snip secondhand when the XT2 came out. I can now look forward to affording a used XT2. Luckily IBIS not is critical for me.

Simon

> Excellent article by Ming Thein on image stabilization: https://blog.mingthein.com/2016/08/19/stabilisation-is-good-but-only-up-to-a-point/

nothing excellent about this statement he makes "And it doesn’t work when: Resolution is high"

1) Sony perfectly works with 42mp

2) m43 perfectly works with 20mp @ 1/4 FF frame (eq 80mp FF sensel-density-wise)


> The original IBIS patent is from HP.

you then can share the link/url to that patent of course, can you ?

I distinctly remember that Minolta were the first to introduce "IBIS". According to Wikipedia this was in 2003 in the Dimage A1. I remember it well as I was a Minolta fan at the time. They called it AS for Anti-Shake.They followed this with the first dslr to use it which was the Dynax 7D. Pentax followed later. IBIS is the Olympus term for their particular system by the way but is the obvious best word for the general idea.

@Dogman: The exposure compensation on the X-H1 is accessible via actuating a button right next to the shutter button. The reason that Fuji implemented this on their "pro"-oriented bodies, the GFX and X-H1, is to allow users to make exposure comp adjustments without taking their hand off the grip. This can be particularly important when shooting sports, photojournalism or video. It's actually easy to see on the top LCD; which can also be configured to display videography-centric information, as well as stills info. Whether this will be in favor with virtually all Fuji X-photographers is open to debate, but I do know enough of their design process to know that virtually every decision Fuji makes about camera design fully considered, debated, and thought-out, so if they did it this way, they have very good reasons for doing so based on input from their consortium of professional end-users.

Lastly, while IBIS is a key feature of the new X-H1, its not by any stretch the only one: the principle new features are around singnificantly improved video recording capability, including EVF flicker reduction when shooting in low light, and also, a biggie for photojournalists, a dedicated and raised button for back-button focusing (yay!). Regarding the size: the X-H1 has to be bigger in order to dissipate the extra heat from the increased video performance; this is simple physics. With respect to weight, the new camara is 123 grams heavier than an X-T2, no doubt in part due to the increased size, a good portion of which is due to the significantly larger grip.

I would expect that the X-T3, which should be forthcoming in late Q3 or early Q4, will have the "traditional" exposure compensation dial on the top deck. At least, I hope it will, because, lke you, I personally prefer having the comp dial on the top deck. Time will tell.

@steve Jacob, you have it backwards. After the Sony bail out in 2012, Sony got access to Olympus's better IS tech which is significantly different then the less effective old Minolta tech. Look at the Sony cameras after that date and they all mostly got IS. Olympus in exchange got access to the significantly better Sony sensors. Previously M43rds cameras had Panasonic sensors.
Mike don't forget the new Gx9 is coming out soon. The images have been leaked and the spec sound promising. Maybe better way to go if you do already have some lenses.

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