Today is the day that Fujifilm notches another mark on its development calendar.  The Fujifilm X-H1.

NOTE:  This is not a review in any considered sense.  I’ve held the Fuji X-H1 for perhaps an hour.  I did not shoot other than to test the new shutter and AF.  This mini-review will be more of an overview, than anything else.

There are other photographers in the UK and beyond that have been testing the camera and I would expect them to have full reviews as soon as the embargo is lifted.

So, this is what it looks like.  Some will think it’s a cross between an X-T2 and a GFX.  And they would be right.

The Fuji X-H1 will definitely suit some people’s hand size and be a relief for those that find the smaller mirrorless cameras fiddly to use. 

Fujifilm X-H1Fujifilm X-H1

From the front and back, it looks very similar in features to the X-T2 but clearly, the bulkier hand grip and the overall larger format is a difference.

Key Standout Features of the Fuji X-H1

  • In Body Image Stabilisation (and they said it could never happen …. 🙂 )
  • Bigger grip, delicate release button feeling.
  • Silent mechanical shutter.
  • Higher resolution (3.69 million dots) EVF.
  • Sub LCD & exposure compensation button (same as the GFX).
  • Touch panel LCD.
  • 25% thicker magnesium alloy body, scratch protection black painting (8H), higher mount area rigidity.
  • AF-C performance improvement.
  • Flicker-free shooting.
  • Eterna Cinema Film Simulation
  • Better Filming Features

Fujifilm X-H1

What struck me about the Fuji X-H1….

Remember, I only had it for an hour under the careful watch of one of Fujifilm UK’s smiliest employees.  But I was struck by:

  1. The amazingly tactile shutter button:  This is something that I didn’t understand until I used the camera.   The shutter button, combined with the silent mechanical shutter is incredible and reacts instantly.
  2. IBIS:  They said it couldn’t be done, but, much like 4K in the X-Pro2 Fujifilm seemed to listen and work hard behind the scenes.  There is 5 Axis in-body stabilisation which when I tested very briefly the video recording functions is obviously apparent.  Footage that I’d probably gorrilapod or tripod in the past, look like they can be shot handheld now.
  3. Touch LCD: Traditionally I’m not a fan of touch screens and switch them off in my cameras that support them.  However, I did like the ability to select only certain areas of the LCD to be touch enabled with the X-H1.
  4. AF-C performance upgrade is also very apparent.  Couple it with the new shutter button the whole system seems to react incredibly fast.
  5. Eterna Cinema Film Simulation:  By titling this “cinema” in the camera, Fujifilm knows that not many people will use it as a stills simulation.  It’s very flat, but, when running through filming I can see this as being the perfect starting point for grading.
  6. Video Overhaul:  I think this is where the camera is really shining.  There appear to be lots of new items on the filming menu, including:
    • F-Log recording internally
    • Shadow, Highlight, WB and DR for Movie Recording
    • Peripheral Light Correction
    • Face / Eye Detection
    • MF Assist and Focus Checking
    • Time Code Settings
    • Tally Light and quite a bit more.

Fujifilm X-H1 Fujifilm X-H1 Fujifilm X-H1 Fujifilm X-H1

In Summary

I do think this camera is going to be well received, especially by those who want to do a bit more with their filming (which is probably where the camera will come into my workflow).

It’s a shame that it doesn’t have a fully articulating screen to monitor footage and you still need a grip to monitor audio too.

That said, the addition of the IBIS, internal F-Log and Eterna and 200mbs shooting does make this a very strong camera for shooting movies.

Additionally, I think this camera will be amazing for sports and wildlife photographers.  It’s a bit bigger than the other X-Series cameras but if you are tripodding or staying in one place for a while that makes little difference.

What about Wedding and Street Photographers?  Honestly, I don’t see the need to replace your X-T2’s or X-Pro2’s with this camera for shooting stills at weddings or on the street.

It’s bigger and heavier, BUT, if you are the type of photographer who likes to shoot thousands of images in a day, then this might be for you at the expense of the size and weight benefit of the X-Series.

Will I Buy It?  I may buy it if I intend to increase the quality of my Youtube and general video work.  We’ll see…..But I’ve only just purchased my X-E3 so I’ll need to sell some stuff first if I do.

DISCLAIMER:  Remember, I held the camera for about an hour.  That’s it.  I didn’t shoot much.  I run a quick video test.  The reason the above is pretty vague is because of that.  I am excited to see what the other photographers who have been testing the camera say about it.  I’m sure all those reviews will be out now.

If you do fancy the camera, you can probably get a pre-order in with WEX today…. have fun & Happy Snapping.


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