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Friday, 09 September 2016

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Rats! Now it probably will take much longer than usual for Fuji to launch its first round of promotional discounts.

This, sadly, is the inevitable consequence when a camera manufacturer listens to customers’ feedback about the first generation of a product, and incorporates their suggestions into the second generation.

I preordered the X-T2 through my local store and expected to be in the first five or so, though they would not tell me. I arrived yesterday to be told they had received only TWO body-only boxes, TWO, for a reasonably major brick and mortar store.
My initial frustration with the store, with whom I've had a great relationship for many years and where I've happily spent thousands of dollars, has turned to frustration with Fuji. Good management figures out supply and demand equations, though far bigger firms, eg Apple, do not have a good history in this arena. No sale, no income, no income, no profit. I'm sure there's some sort of corporate excuse, likely the earthquake. To be sure, there are much more important things, this is a first order first world problem, but frustrating nonetheless. I suspect I'm not alone.

For whatever it's worth, I believe this is the source for the Fujifilm-earthquake-sensors information: http://www.mirrorlessrumors.com/around-4-months-delay-roadmap-sony-panasonic-olympus-nikon-fuji-lucky/

Time to start looking for closeout deals on the X-T1 :-)

This morning I visited my local pusher ... er, dealer, to have a play with the X-T2 and lenses. The camera looks very inviting indeed, and works ergonomically with the lenses I would be most interested in: the 23mm f2, 56mm f1.2, and 16-55 f2.8. It also appears to work very effectively in manual focus with other brand lenses like Leica. It was hard to tell in the store, how well the auto focus will work in sports situations, but all the components seem to be in place. I was given a mail-in rebate voucher of $50 if I decide soon, and was told that they had several in stock if I needed to have one now.

As far as the action performance goes, the Fuji rep, told me that they are setting up an arrangement at the store that will allow anyone to take the camera home for a three day 'rental' at zero cost. I thought that was a pretty gutsy marketing strategy, but I will wait to see what the micro 4/3 camp unveils later this month, before I take up the offer.

Up until Sunday I hadn't decided whether I would upgrade yet or wait a few months, but on Monday I decided to ring my usual dealer and he said it shouldn't be a problem and would probably be in on Thursday so I put my name on the list. Come Thursday he rang me to say we have one for you and it's on the way! This is a store with a pretty good market presence but doesn't have an online shop so that may make a difference for some people but it was $170 cheaper than all the other places in Australia that were taking internet (pre)orders, so I have nothing to complain about.

@Bob Johnston: Take a quick shot of your bank statement with "the best camera" (the one you have with you), import into Lightroom, open the spot removal tool, adjust diameter and feathering accordingly for the size of the "hole" (in this case...pretty large), and fill. You'll quickly forget it ever existed. For best results, as Mike is known to advocate, print the resulting picture and let it hang in a place where you'll see it frequently.

Lots of good comments from the gang here, as usual.

@Chris Kern: As a "Voice of the Customer" (VOC) professional, yep, that's what happens! :-) When I teach VOC, a key point I stress is that when a company puts customer needs and first and foremost in creating innovative products that deliver maximal quality and value for customers, everyone wins: the customer, the company, and society as a whole (thank you, W. Edwards Deming).

@Eric Brody: All valid points, but sometimes, sometimes, a company hits a Grand Slam home run with a product just "connects" with customers and the demand exceeds all sales forecast models. As the statistician George Box once said, "All models are imperfect, some are more useful than others." Knowing Fuji, they will get back on top of this post-haste. The fact they ended their press release with, "Actually, there is no excuse..." tells us that they are committed to meeting production demand. When the X-T1 debuted with the "sensor flare through the video side door" failure mode, Fuji had a fix, a customer service communication distributed to customers, a phone number, a free shipping label, and a service plan in place in less than 10 days flat. My early serial no. X-T1 went in for that fix and I received it back in 4 days: shipped out on Monday, received on Tuesday, turned the repair around in less than one day and shipped on Wednesday, and I had it back in hand on Thursday. If there is one thing Fuji knows how to do, it's execute.

Hmmm. XT-2's seem to be readily available at the three stores I visited yesterday.

Gordon

As a heavy Nikon shooter I've been dreaming about going over to the Fuji XT2.
I got to try one a trade show this week and to be honest it was a big dissapointment. It felt like very fragile to me. The image quality is not in doubt but the build quality just didn't impress at all.
The lenses seemed much more solid than the camera body, I'd have no issue with them, but I couldn't see myself relying on the XT2 for professional jobs out in the rain and cold all day, I just felt like they'd not be tough enough...
Am I missing somethiong here? I was really surprised based on the love this camera seems to be getting...

AaronL

Stephen's translation is pretty much all you need to understand Fuji's announcement. Below is one in more natural English without the overly flowery language used in the Japanese original:

Dear customer,

A warm thank you for your continued patronage of Fujifilm products.

Concerning the Fujifilm X-T2, we have received more orders than expected. Therefore, it will be "a number of days*" before your order arrives. We are terribly sorry for the trouble this may have caused you.

We'll continue to work hard to produce good products. Thank you so very much for your understanding.

*They literally wrote "a number of days" which makes it seem like it won't be an extended wait.

[So is the "there is no excuse" line not in the original? What that a matter of translating idiom? --Mike]

Here is a more natural (not literal) translation of the announcement.

"Dear Customers

Thank you for using Fujifilm products.

As the number of reservations for the mirrorless digital camera “FUJIFILM X-T2” far exceeded our expectations, we do not have enough cameras to fill all orders. Therefore, delivery of your camera may be delayed by several days.
We apologize for this inconvenience.

We are working to increase production and thank you for your understanding."

According to the New Yorker nothing Fujifilm or any other camera company does matters. They are all "doomed".

http://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/with-the-iphone-7-apple-changed-the-camera-industry-forever?mbid=social_twitter

The "there is no excuse" is from "moshiwake arimasen" which is often a part of a very polite, formal apology.

It this context, it wouldn't have the same meaning as in English. I hear it almost every day when the train is late...just part of a polite apology to a customer or someone of higher status.

John Beardsworth's experience along with the Japanese only issue of the apology might indicate that caught short, Fuji is being smart and giving its O/S markets preference while relying on Japanese culture to keep its Japanese customers hanging on the line -- as they will.

Cheers, Geoff

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