According to Fujirumors, the Fujifilm X-E4 is the final camera that will have an X-Trans IV sensor. Also according to Fujirumors, the upcoming Fujifilm X-H2 will be the first to have an X-Trans V sensor, and will not be released until early 2022. There won’t be any new X-series camera between now and then. I’ve been asked to provide commentary on all this because people are apparently interested in my opinion for some reason.
First, I’m not surprised whatsoever that the Fujifilm X-E4 is the last X-Trans IV camera. In fact, before the X-E4 was even announced, I predicted that it would be the last camera model with that sensor, because Fujifilm has previously used the X-E line to close out sensor generations. The X-Trans IV sensor is excellent and doesn’t need to be replaced, but digital technology advances quickly, and Fujifilm will continue to incorporate new technology to not only stay relevant, but gain market share, so X-Trans IV has to come to an end at some point, and apparently we’ve reached that point.
Second, the Fujifilm X-H2 will be the first camera with a new sensor and processor, and while I assume that means X-Trans V, there’s a chance that it might not be X-Trans at all. I think it will be X-Trans, but it might not—it might not even be made by Sony. At this point, only Fujifilm knows for sure, but I can see a partnership with Samsung (it’s been quietly rumored for a few years now). Who knows, maybe it will even include pixel binning and ISOCELL, a technology that Samsung developed with the help of Fujifilm. We can wildly speculate, but we’ll have to wait to find out what exactly the new sensor is. My prediction is that it will be at least 32-megapixel, maybe more.
Third, Fujifilm is taking a break from releasing new cameras, which is great! I suggested that they should do this, and to not be in such a hurry to replace existing models. What Fujifilm should do over the next six-to-eight months is focus on kaizen firmware updates. This would make current Fujifilm users more happy and more likely to spend money on future Fujifilm gear, and it would also create new excitement for a camera like the X-T30, which, despite being a couple years old, can still be purchased brand-new and is the latest model of its type, but feels like a generation behind even though it has the same sensor and processor as the X-E4. The X-Pro3 is a premium model, but missing features included in the cheaper X-E4, which is a shame. Fujifilm should take some time to rectify this before moving on to the next sensor. I don’t know if they will, but they absolutely should.
Fourth, it’s probable that we’ll see another camera released by Fujifilm in 2021. It won’t be an X-series camera, or will it? Word on the street is that another GFX camera is in the works, which will replace the GFX-50S, but will be both better and cheaper. The GFX line is doing very well for Fujifilm, so it makes sense to keep the momentum going. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Fujifilm release a Bayer camera later this year, maybe an X-A8 or (less likely) an X-T300 or (even less likely) an XF20. If it does happen, you heard it here first, but if it doesn’t happen, well, don’t be surprised, because it probably won’t. It might, though.
Fifth, I don’t really have a fifth point, but I didn’t want to end on fourth. Fujirumors is rarely wrong, so I believe what they say is true: the X-E4 is indeed the last X-Trans IV cameras and the X-H2, which we’ll see sometime in 2022, will be the first with a new sensor. I’m pretty excited for the X-H2, which will be video-centric (8K anyone? 4K 120 FPS anyone?), with improved IBIS and autofocus, and specs that will rival or exceed full-frame cameras. I’m just throwing out guesses, but that’s what I think the X-H2 will be, and you’ll see it proclaimed as the “full-frame killer” by some. I just hope that it’s more commercially successful than the X-H1, which was plagued by poor timing and a high price-tag at launch. I’m sure Fujifilm learned their lesson. Above that, I hope Fujifilm uses this break to release some great firmware updates, which is what they need to do because it’s long overdue.
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