Fujifilm Re­veals Full GFX Specs… De­liv­er­ies Start Now!

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Since an­nounc­ing its mirrorless dig­i­tal medium for­mat cam­era sys­tem back at last year’s Pho­tok­ina in Ger­many, Fujifilm has kept a tight lid on the first GFX cam­era’s full specs and pric­ing. Now all is re­vealed and, by the time you read this, the first ship­ment of bod­ies and lenses should be land­ing in Aus­tralia.

Let’s cut to the chase re­gard­ing pric­ing first. The GFX 50S body de­liv­ers on the promise of be­ing “well un­der $10,000”, but that’s in US dol­lars of course. In Aus­tralia it just scrapes un­der at $9999 which still makes it a lot cheaper than Has­sel­blad’s ri­val X1D and in the ball­park in terms of com­pet­ing with the top-end full-35mm D-SLRs from Canon and Nikon. The stan­dard GF 63mm f2.8 R WR lens (equiv­a­lent to a 50mm) is priced at $2399 so that’s a shade un­der $12,500 to jump into a dig­i­tal medium for­mat sys­tem…only Pen­tax’s 645Z of­fers a sim­i­larly af­ford­able route, but it’s a sig­nif­i­cantly big­ger and bulkier cam­era than the GFX 50s. There are two other lenses avail­able im­me­di­ately – a 32-64mm f4.0 zoom (equiv­a­lent to 25-51mm and priced at $3499), and a 120mm f4.0 macro lens (95mm and $4199) – but Fujifilm is promis­ing three more lenses by the end of 2017; namely a 23mm f4.0 ul­tra-wide (equiv­a­lent to 18mm), a 45mm f2.8 wide-an­gle (36mm) and a 110mm f2.0 short tele­photo (87mm). There’s also an adapter for H-Mount lenses (which, of course, Fujifilm has some in­volve­ment with) and which give the GFX sys­tem a lens-shut­ter op­tion.

A num­ber of the GFX body’s ma­jor fea­tures have al­ready been well-doc­u­mented since Pho­tok­ina 2016, in­clud­ing the in­ter­change­able EVF, the new G Mount with a fully-elec­tronic 12-pin in­ter­face, and the 44x33 mm 51.4 MP (ef­fec­tive) CMOS sen­sor which is de­signed by Fujifilm – or “cus­tomised”, as the com­pany nicely puts it – and fab­ri­cated by Sony. What’s now re­vealed is a 425-point con­trast-de­tec­tion AF sys­tem (in a 17x25 pat­tern), 256-zone me­ter­ing and a con­tin­u­ous shoot­ing speed of 3.0 fps with no limit on the JPEG burst length. The sen­si­tiv­ity range is equiv­a­lent to ISO 100 to 12,800 with ex­pan­sion up to ISO 102,400 and a one-stop ‘pull’ to ISO 50. The cam­era’s fo­cal plane shut­ter has a speed range of 60 min­utes to 1/4000 sec­ond, but there’s the op­tion of a sen­sor-based shut­ter which boosts the top speed to 1/16,000 sec­ond, or ‘elec­tronic first cur­tain’ op­er­a­tion. Flash sync is up to 1/125 sec­ond.

The GFX 50S cap­tures a max­i­mum im­age size of 8256x6192 pix­els with the op­tion of one smaller size, but a to­tal of seven as­pect ra­tios – 4:3, 3:2, 16:9, 1:1, 5:4, 7:6 and 65:24 (i.e. the ‘true’ panoramic ra­tio). JPEGs can be cap­tured at one of three com­pres­sion lev­els while RAW files are cap­tured with 14-bit colour (RAF for­mat) and there’s the op­tion of RAW+JPEG record­ing. The GFX 50S has dual mem­ory card slots for the SD for­mat, both with UHS-II speed sup­port for SDXC de­vices.

Not sur­pris­ingly, quite a num­ber of JPEG pro­cess­ing fea­tures from the top-end X Se­ries cam­eras have found their way into the GFX 50S, in­clud­ing the ‘Film Sim­u­la­tion’ pre­sets (with the lat­est ACROS B&W modes), ‘Grain Ef­fect’ and the ‘Lens Mo­du­la­tion Op­ti­miser’. New is some­thing called ‘Colour Chrome Ef­fect’ which is de­signed to boost the colour sat­u­ra­tion with­out com­pro­mis­ing tonal­ity. Other no­table fea­tures in­clude five auto brack­et­ing modes (in­clud­ing for the ‘Film Sim­u­la­tion’ pre­sets), a mul­ti­ple ex­po­sure fa­cil­ity, in­ter­val­ome­ter and WiFi.

The GFX 50S records Full HD 1080p video with stereo sound and the avail­abil­ity of var­i­ous func­tions such as the ‘Film Sim­u­la­tion’ pre­sets. There’s a stereo au­dio in­put for ex­ter­nal mics and an out­put for mon­i­tor­ing via head­phones. An un­com­pressed video out­put is avail­able from the cam­era’s HDMI con­nec­tor for record­ing to an ex­ter­nal recorder.

Phys­i­cally, the GFX 50s looks and feels a bit like a su­per­sized X-T2, although it’s nei­ther big nor bulky for a dig­i­tal medium for­mat cam­era. The fully weather-pro­tected mag­ne­sium al­loy bodyshell – which is ac­tu­ally smaller over­all than ei­ther the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II or the Nikon D5 – weighs in at 920 grams with the de­tach­able EVF at­tached. It sports a pair of di­als – for shut­ter speeds and ISO set­tings – and a top-deck mono­chrome LCD read-out panel. The 8.1 cm LCD mon­i­tor screen has a res­o­lu­tion of 2.36 megadots, has a three-way tilt ad­just­ment (like the X-T2) and pro­vides touch con­trols in­clud­ing for aut­o­fo­cus­ing. There’s an op­tional ver­ti­cal grip which holds an ad­di­tional bat­tery and a tilt adapter for the EVF. In­ter­est­ingly, there’s a mon­i­tor­ing fa­cil­ity for the age of the bat­ter­ies, scaled from zero to four.

The new Fujifilm GFX 50S hits our shores very soon and will be avail­able with three lenses while fur­ther lens re­leases are planned for 2017.

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