Fujifilm unveils the new X-T1

Fuji have announced what is sure to cause a stir in the market – the new X-T1.

Much rumoured on the Internet, the new camera boasts 8 frames per second burst speed including autofocus (worlds fastest AF of 0.08 seconds is claimed) so is a major step-up for the mirrorless genre for which continuous AF has been something of an Achilles heel so far. Compatibility with the new SDXC UHS-II format (worlds first) memory cards means data writing speed is about twice that of a conventional card.

Fuji have also gone to town on the viewfinder, installing a brand new 2.36m dot resolution OLED display with a lag-time of just 0.005sec – one-tenth that of conventional digital cameras.

The viewfinder also has four modes, “FULL” giving a full image of the scene, “ NORMAL” provides the full scene but with shooting information, “DUAL” which provides a dual image for manual focus with either split image or focus peaking and “PORTRAIT” which in Normal and Full modes rotates the interface automatically when the camera is in vertical format.

The new viewfinder also has the world’s highest magnification for digital cameras of 0.77x and provides a beautifully crisp and detailed view.

Another plus point for the XT-1 is it is now weather resistant and Fuji are to produce some weather sealed lenses too – the XF 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 R OIS WR launching in June and the new XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R OIS WR and XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R OIS WR available during 2014. The body has approximately 80 weather sealing points and is freeze resistant to -10°C.

With 5 mechanical dials and two command dials and six fully customizable function buttons the camera offers an intuitive handling experience and will be available with the new VG-XT1 – also weather sealed and providing a vertical shutter release and additional battery power.

The dials cover settings for Shutter Speed, Exposure compensation, ISO, Metering and drive modes.

The X-T1 features the same X-Trans CMOS II sensor as the well respected X-E2 with Fuji’s unique original colour array with randomized pixels eliminating the need for a low-pass filter for sharper images. Fuji also re-designed the circuit board for the sensor, which has allowing inclusion of an ISO 51200 setting!

The X-T1 also includes the EXR Processor II which corrects for even fractional blurring at the edge of images and includes a Lens Modulation Optimizer which integrates the lens sensor and processor to optimize resolving power of all Fuji X-Series lenses.

WIFI is built in to the X-T1 too, allowing remote shooting and instant image transfer to smartphones using free Fuji software. Location tagging of images via your smartphone is also available as is WIFI transfer to your computer.

An interval timer is also included for time lapse photography and the assist grip MHG-XT supports extended shooting, allows removal of battery and memory card while still in place and works as a tripod quick release.

Fuji include the EF-X8 flash with the camera with a guide number of 11 and a compact body it uses Fuji’s super intelligent flash system.

Here at Park Cameras, we have been allowed access to the new X-T1 prior to launch – see our video introduction.

The camera certainly handles very well. It feels very solid in-hand thanks to the die-cast magnesium body and the dials and controls fall to hand just as they should.

Some cameras just feel ‘right’ as soon as you pick them us and the X-T1 certainly fits in to that category!

The X-T1 has a reassuring solidity while remaining compact and lightweight and is clearly going to be very tempting for those looking to ditch their SLR’s a lighten their load.

The Auto focus on the pre-production unit we tried was impressively fast in both single shot and continuous modes and Fuji certainly do seem to have leapt ahead of their competitors in Auto Focus performance.

The viewfinder truly is a revelation, we could detect no lag and the 2.36m resolution really does provide a superbly crisp and detailed view of your subject. Low light performance too seemed a big step ahead of what the electronic viewfinder has been capable of so far.

Be sure to keep an eye on the Park Camera blog and our dedicated FUJI X-T1 webpage for further updates of the XT-1 or top place a pre-order should you wish to secure one of the first X-T1’s available in the UK.

Steve Marley - Park Cameras

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