Fujifilm X-H2S mirrorless camera: All about speed and video

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Fujifilm’s latest X-Summit event is taking place today in Omiya, Japan, and brings several new announcements for its X series of APS-C mirrorless cameras, including two cameras and two lenses. The headliner is the 26-megapixel X-H2S camera, which Fujifilm calls its new high-speed flagship. It’s the successor to 2018’s X-H1 and will launch July 7 for $2,499 (without lens).

Joining that camera on release is a new XF 150-600mm super telephoto zoom costing $1,999, with an XF 18-120mm motorized zoom due later in mid-September for $899. Fujifilm also teased another camera, the X-H2, with a new 40-megapixel non-stacked sensor also arriving in September.

These new cameras are more professional DSLR-like than any other Fujifilm X-series camera, eschewing the classic shutter speed and ISO dials in favor of a more modern PSAM dial. While the X-H2S retains a modest resolution of just two megapixels more than its predecessor, its biggest improvements are in its speed, autofocus tracking capabilities and hybrid video shooting. The new 26-megapixel back-illuminated APS-C sensor has a stacked design, enabling faster readout speeds that enable blackout-free shooting at up to 40fps with its electronic shutter, while maintaining continuous focus tracking. auto stitch. Unlike the Nikon Z9, the X-H2S has a mechanical shutter, although it caps out at a much lower 15fps burst rate.

The rear dial of the X-H2S doesn’t snap in like the X-H1, and the buttons are designed for a sturdier, rubber-reinforced feel.
Picture: Fujifilm

The top layout of the X-H2S has more buttons than the X-H1 and now a single dial for mode selection.
Picture: Fujifilm

The other key element to the X-H2S’s new speed is its fifth-generation X processor which kicks in at 1GHz, with a 600MHz sub-processor entirely dedicated to handling the new five-point image stabilization system. axes in the body – which Fujifilm claims is capable of up to seven stops of stabilization. For comparison, the older fourth-generation processor peaked at 608 MHz for all tasks.

This new leeway may prove vital, as processor-heavy autofocus systems with real-time subject tracking have made great strides in recent years, and Fujifilm is trying to catch up with Sony and Canon’s latest offerings. and Nikon. The X-H2S can perform three times the autofocus calculations of Fujifilm’s own X-T4, and Fujifilm says its new deep learning AI enables subject detection and face and eye tracking humans, animals, birds, automobiles, bicycles, planes and trains. In Zone AF mode, the camera favors the closest subjects that are centered in the frame – ideally selecting the main person in a group.

Since the X-H2S is designed for hybrid photo and video use, it features a fully articulating 1.62 million dot LCD and 5.76 million dot EVF with 0 magnification. .8x, where the X-H1 had a more limited double hinge. LCD design that could not face forward and a 3.69 million dot EVF with 0.75x magnification. Additionally, the X-H2S benefits from a much-needed headphone jack to go with its 3.5mm mic port as well as an upgrade from Micro USB to USB-C – with the ability to use it natively as a webcam. without any additional software. As for its video recording specifications, they are increased up to 6K at 30 fps, 4K up to 120 fps and 1080p up to 240 fps. It can record these resolutions and frame rates in Apple ProRes format internally to its new primary CFexpress Type B card slot (the secondary card slot is the most typical SDXC UHS-II). For hardcore videographers looking to shoot in RAW, they will need to record externally via the camera’s HDMI 2.1 connection – output to ProRes RAW or Blackmagic RAW.

Fujifilm says the new F-Log2 video profile allows up to 14 stops of dynamic range, and when it comes to recording time, the X-H2S is rated to run for up to 240 minutes at 4K60P at a temperature of 25 degrees Celsius / 77 degrees Fahrenheit or 20 minutes at 40 degrees Celsius / 104 degrees Fahrenheit. By purchasing an additional cooling fan for $199, that high-temperature time more than doubles to 50 minutes of recording. We’ve never seen a first-party add-on cooling solution from a camera manufacturer before, but cameras with built-in fans are a staple in the video world. Having an optional fan might be a logical trade-off for releasing a separate model dedicated to video, like Panasonic’s S1H.

The optional fan mounts to the back of the camera with the screen unfolded.
Picture: Fujifilm

On the front of the lens, Fujifilm has two new zooms: large and small. The XF 150-600mm f/5.6-8 R LM OIS WR doesn’t have the brightest aperture, but it’s a super-telephoto lens with a full-frame equivalent range of 229-914mm at all zooms. inside the barrel. The other new lens is the XF 18-120mm f/4 LM PZ WR with a motorized zoom for smoother zoom and focus control. As for further lens development, Fujifilm is adding the XF 56mm f/1.2 II, XF 30mm f/2.8 Macro and XF 8mm f/3.5 to its roadmap, with details to come later this year. .

The 150-600mm is the longest telephoto lens in the X range, and it works with a teleconverter (shown here) to achieve a full-frame equivalent of 1800mm.
Picture: Fujifilm

The company is also teasing another camera for release in September. The X-H2 – no “S” – is a 40-megapixel version of the X-H2S. Not much information on this model is available at the moment aside from resolution, but it’s safe to assume that it shares many features with its lookalike sibling with an added focus on high resolution imaging. It’ll be the first time an X-series camera has been split into high-speed and high-res versions, though that’s a formula other manufacturers have used for decades, especially in models aimed at professionals.

While Fujifilm, like many other companies, has been pretty hard hit by shipping constraints on many of its cameras, the X-H2S is getting some time before it’s expected to start shipping. in July. It’s the most expensive Fuji X camera yet, and launching alongside it will be a $399 vertical grip and the $199 cooling fan. A second vertical outlet option, designed for faster wired and wireless Ethernet connectivity, will retail for $999 and launch in early September.

Fujifilm’s second generation H-camera looks like a significant upgrade to a range that seemed all but forgotten. While its medium-format GFX cameras hit lower price floors, the smaller and lighter APS-C X lineup steps up with a higher ceiling, narrowing a feature gap to try to avoid. losing customers to new competition in full-frame systems from other brands. . The X-H2S and X-H2 look a bit like the company is following the latest trends to directly compete with high-end models from Canon, Sony and Nikon and departing even further from Fujifilm’s typically retro designs. The X-H2S and X-H2 should offer their autofocus, video and speed performance to help overcome the “but it’s not full frame” complaint often seen on the X line, while still giving existing Fujifilm users more reason to upgrade in line.

Update May 31 at 10:09 a.m. ET: Added details on Fujifilm’s lens roadmap with three more lenses to come.

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