I’m sooooo tempted to sell my Leica M10 for this thing.
But I know I would regret it.
EDIT: I had a chance to shoot with one and the image quality is outstanding.
EDIT #2: I finally caved in and purchased one, after selling all my other gear.
21 thoughts on “Fujifilm GFX 50R.”
Peter, Reid Rviews has a pretty good review of the previous gfx compared to the x1d in terms of image rendering. of course, the sensors both have sony heritage, tho hassy’s color finetuning is apparent. Reid compares them as both rendering superbly. the price difference naturally makes the fuji more attractive. i had an x-pro 1 and fuji’s colors just weren’t to my taste. the plastic and the typical menu maze did not appeal eiher. perhaps the rangefinder-like qualities would work for yo and this is advertised as being for streetand candids.
I can understand the temptation, but it would be difficult to give up the M10.
Gentlemen, thank you for your thoughts. I was careful to say “I know I would regret it”, so I’m definitely staying put.
Believe me…I have 99% bought it on at least three separate occasions (like “card out” and everything lol). However (and I am sure you know all of this already, but I am simply restating for the public record…)
(1) The difference in IQ over full frame just isn’t there unless you print large. Like really large.
(2) The lack of IBIS is notable. Many reports have said at least 3-4x focal length in shutter speed to avoid shutter shock, and camera shake. In most cases, that translates to at least 1/250s.
(3) What you gain in sensor size, you lose in body size, and lens versatility (just look at the M-lenses!)
(4) Any IQ advantage quickly disappears at higher ISOs.
That being said, the temptation to adapt some of my favorite MF lenses (Mamiya 80/1.9 and Pentax 105/2.4 for example) is really overwhelming…
LOL Mark, I hear you! I guess we’ve both been burned by GAS in the past enough to proceed with caution this time.
For me the size of the M10/lenses and the nimbleness (for lack of a better word) of an optical rangefinder represent the perfect package for 35mm photography.
But I keep wondering: what if I shot the Fuji the way I used to shoot my Mamiya? What images could I create with its larger sensor?
the IQ over full frame is there, and clearly visible when you compare the RAWs. it is not even in the same League with an M10. Shooting at least 1/250 minimum is also not true, i go down to 1/60 if needed. Iso UP to 6400 ist super usable, i have printed even 12800 shots. you do have to treat this camera as what it is : Medium format. the m10 will be quicker to shoot, but other than that the Fuji is my favorite camera.
Excellent feedback Marc, appreciate it.
I have no doubts about the IQ coming out of this camera. It’s more a question of whether it would be the right fit for me. In most cases, except perhaps for posed portraiture, it likely wouldn’t. Still…
Trust your instinct – I was in store the other day and trying to shoot with the GFX-50R and the one thing that it definitely is not is an M replacement. If you like being disconnected with your subject, looking at a tv screen to compose, not seeing outside of the frame, and holding a huge plastic brick of a camera with insanely complex settings and menus, go for it. Leica wrecked that tolerance for me.
That being said, I’ve got in hand a Leica M10D with a 7 Artisans 35mm 2.0 and I have to say, it doesn’t get much better than this, technical specs be damned.
Done! Thank you. That’s just the sort of dose of reality I needed to hear. I appreciate you sharing your personal experience with the Fuji. That user experience is exactly what I feared.
Having said all that, I know that I’ve asked this in the past but why can’t someone make the digital equivalent of a Mamiya 7?
I learned my lesson in buying (and selling) the Hasselblad X1D and 45mm lens (35mm équivalent) THREE times. Knowing you, learn from me. 😉
Meanwhile waiting if someone will do a true rangefinder style medium format with an optical viewfinder, but no guarantees it will be as useable as a Leica rangefinder……..
Yes, I know. No guarantees. As I’ve said before, it all goes back to Rules #2 and #20 (from here: https://prosophos.com/2014/10/09/photography-truths-ive-learned-over-the-years/ )
What did you not care for with the X1D?
Peter you should definitely consider a Pentax 645D as they are CCD, have a great level of usability and cost (relatively) peanuts. A Leica S2 or S 006 would also be incredibly interesting to see what they would do in your hands.
I nearly went this Fuji over Leica M, but the usability just isn’t there. Very much like the early early Fuji ILCs. Absolute garbage.
Thanks Matt! Another vote against the Fuji I see.
Re: the Pentax 645D, I had one years ago. I really liked the (CCD) output on a larger sensor, but found the camera a little too clunky to use in practice (card writing times were a little slow, for example).
A few images from back then:
Most of your photography would benefit from the GFX 50R. Where it wouldn’t be more advantageous would be in the sports shots. From what I can tell, the vast majority of your pictures are posed portraits or still lifes. The GFX would most likely give you better tonal variations. If you pixel peek, it will give you more detail.
I would suggest you ask yourself, what appeals to you with the GFX? Is it just GAS? Do you want people to look at your camera and say Wow? (That doesn’t happen with Fujifilm. They’ll say they didn’t know Fujifilm made cameras.) Do you want small and compact? (Nobody would call the GFX small.) Do you print large? (Many times the difference in detail isn’t noticeable unless you really look closely.). What is important to you in functionality? (The GFX doesn’t have an ISO dial. The lenses don’t have that classic manual focus feel.)
Your gear is not cheap. The best thing to do is rent a camera to see if it is right for you.
Thank you GFX 50R Owner for taking the time to add your perspective.
In answer to your question, I’d be looking for tonal range advantages with the larger sensor.
Re: most of my photography being posed shots or Still Life, I believe you may be basing your opinion on recent images, where the winter has shut me indoors, and I’ve been doing a lot of lens testing.
This blog goes back many years and if you view more samples of my work, you will see more than posed/still photography (and you will also see sports photography, but I’m leaving that out of this discussion).
What I’m fond of doing the most, in fact, is anticipating “moments” (for lack of a better word). Here are some examples of what I mean:
I think these sort of photographs would be difficult to capture with the GFX 50R.
For the posed shots, though, different story.
Another comment Peter – when I leave Leica M for even a few months for a different non- rangefinder system, and particularly one with an EVF, and usually one with higher resolution, I find myself shooting much more static subjects, and my photographs become compositionally much more static and, frankly, boring. It also takes me a good month or reusing the M to reintroduce that fluidity and creativity to my style – I simply don’t see subjects and potential compositions as well through a non-rangefinder (and particularly an EVF), and simply find that fighting the camera to get a good shot and forcing myself to be extra careful to try and prove to myself the “quality advantage” from the specs, negates actually getting better photos of “the moment.” It usually just adds up to a whole lot more frustration.
Look, we were getting good shots with 6MP, they just couldn’t be cropped or blown up – seeing and use ability are the keys.
That’s been my experience — exactly as you describe.
I wonder though how the next M, which is rumoured to have a significant increase in megapixels, will affect things. I hope that the OVF, at least, is retained and we’re not looking through TV screens.
I think the optical rangefinder, more than ever, is a differentiating point for Leica, and if they are satisfied with current level of sales, they should continue to produce.