Fujifilm GFX 4:3 Aspect Ratio

Shot with the 4:3 aspect ratio

The native aspect ratio of Fujifilm GFX cameras is 4:3. An aspect ratio is simply a mathematical expression of the shape of a sensor, film, picture, or screen. I’ve mostly shot with the 3:2 aspect ratio, which is the shape of 35mm film and many digital camera sensors, including Fujifilm X cameras, so the native GFX ratio isn’t something I’m used to.

The 4:3 aspect ratio has been around for a long time, and was the original shape of motion picture film beginning in the 1890’s. It would later become the standard shape of television screens and computer monitors for many decades, and today is the aspect ratio of most tablets, such as the iPad. It’s also the standard aspect ratio of Micro-Four-Thirds and digital medium-format cameras, and most old digicams and cellphone cameras use this ratio. 120 medium-format film can be (but isn’t always) shot in this aspect ratio, too.

While 4:3 is more square-like than 3:2, it is still a rectangle, yet I find it more challenging to compose within its shape. I personally like 3:2 and I’m quite comfortable with it. I even prefer to shoot 1:1 square instead of 4:3. The GFX aspect ratio just isn’t natural to me. It doesn’t seem like this should be a big deal, but for some reason it is for me. Over the last year I’ve challenged myself to use 4:3 more, so that I can be better at it.

Shot on an iPhone using my RitchieCam App in the 4:3 aspect ratio

Mainly I’ve used the 4:3 aspect ratio on my iPhone, which is the native shape of most cellphone cameras. My RitchieCam iPhone camera app does have many other ratios to choose from, and I don’t always use 4:3, but I’ve forced myself to use it more than ever before. This has certainly helped me not only refine my compositions within that shape, but become more accustomed to using it and seeing it. It has been becoming a bit more normalized for me. If you’ve used this ratio for years, that might seem like an odd statement, but I haven’t used it much ever (especially when compared to 3:2), so it has been outside of my comfort zone.

Fujifilm should add 4:3 as an aspect ratio choice on their X-series cameras. The current options are 3:2, 1:1, and 16:9. Why not add 4:3, 5:4, and 65:24? It doesn’t seem like it would take much programming effort to do so. Instead, if you want 4:3, you have to shoot GFX.

What about that top picture? What about the five pictures below? Which camera did I use for those to get a 4:3 aspect ratio? I didn’t crop them. They’re straight out of a Fujifilm camera—captured over the last two days and completely unedited—and they are all 4:3. Did I just buy a GFX camera, and, if so, which one? You’ll have to keep scrolling down to find out!

I did not buy a GFX camera, which you probably already guessed based on the photographs’ image quality. While I would certainly love to own one, it’s just not something that it’s in my budget. If Fujifilm ever wanted to give me one, I’d certainly accept the offer, but I’m definitely not holding my breath on that one!

So which Fujifilm camera did I shoot those images with? It couldn’t have been an X-series, right? Actually, the 2/3″ sensor X cameras—X10, X20, X30, XQ1, XQ2—do shoot naively in the 4:3 aspect ratio. But it wasn’t any of those models. And it wasn’t GFX. So what was it?

I used a lowly Fujifilm AX350 point-and-shoot digicam. This camera was number one in my The 5 Worst Fujifilm Cameras That You Should Never Own list, which was a tongue-in-cheek look at Fujifilm’s lesser appreciated models. Of course, any camera is “good enough” in the hands of a skilled photographer, including the AX350.

Interestingly, these old pocket point-and-shoot digicams are all the rage right now, particularly among Gen-Z. Why? There is a nostalgic aesthetic to their image quality. If you existed between 2000 and 2012, there’s a good chance that some of your most important or favorite life moments were captured on one of those cameras. These types of cameras were around before 2000, but film was still king by far. These types of cameras existed well after 2012, too, but more and more they were replaced by cellphones. If you were young between 2000 and 2012, you’re childhood memories are in part viewed through the aesthetic of cheap point-and-shoot digicams, so it makes sense that there would be some nostalgic feelings about it.

You can pick up these old digicams for next to nothing. If you don’t have one sitting in an old box or drawer somewhere, they commonly show up at thrift stores or yard sales for just a few dollars. I got mine from Goodwill about three-and-a-half years ago. It was in a box of various film and digital models, which I paid $40 for. I sold the two film cameras on eBay, and that paid for the lot. There were two kids cameras, which I kept—my youngest two children still play with them. There were two other point-and-shoot digital cameras that didn’t work, so they got tossed in the trash. The AX350 is the only thing that I kept for myself. I don’t use it often at all, but it’s fun to dust off every once in awhile. Although simple to operate, it’s a challenge to get quality results, so I find it to be a good photographic exercise.


  1. Empty Snaps · February 16

    I used to shoot a lot of M43 gear and was glad when I switched to Fuji to use the 3:2 format. It just gives a slightly more panoramic view of a scene. Unfortunately I really started to appreciate portrait view images and 3:2 in portrait mode just seems to tall. I often crop to 4:3 and mostly 5:4. So I kind of miss 4:3 sensors again. Ah well.

    I also love to see the ability to set more aspect ratios in camera. Not only for jpeg shooting (which I rarely do nowadays) but to help with framing. Another great idea that never went very far was the multi-aspect sensor Panasonic put into one of their premium p&s I think LX100 was it?

    • Ritchie Roesch · February 17

      A sensor doesn’t have to be perfectly rectangular. It could have notched corners so if you are shooting 3:2 the top and bottom portion don’t get used, and if you are shooting 4:3 the left and right portion don’t get used. It could even be APS-H sized instead of APS-C. That would be unique anyway.

  2. David · February 16

    “Fujifilm should add 4:3 as an aspect ratio choice on their X-series cameras. The current options are 3:2, 1:1, and 16:9. Why not add 4:3, 5:4, and 65:24? It doesn’t seem like it would take much programming effort to do so. Instead, if you want 4:3, you have to shoot GFX.”

    You have an x-t5, right? On mine, Fuji has options for 4:3 and 5:4, in addition to the 3:2, 1:1, and 16:9 that have been options on older x cameras.

    • Ritchie Roesch · February 17

      Ha! You are right! I completely forgot about that. I’ll actually have to try those aspect ratios on my X-T5… so far I’ve only shot it in 3:2. Thanks for the feedback!

      • David · February 18

        I was quite pleased when I saw them as options…I sometimes like shooting at 4:3 or 5:4 with the X-T5 now for the extra jolt of creativity it requires to adapt (and particularly when shooting portrait orientation, where 3:2 can sometimes seem rather tall)!

      • Ritchie Roesch · February 20

        I’ll have to give it a try this coming week. 😀

  3. Alan Nelson · February 19

    I’ve accually acquired a gfx 50r for a steal off Amazon. We’ve agreed about the megapixel vs usefulness, but I couldn’t help myself! I think those of us who used film and had to consider the costs of developing &tc, and learned to compose shots (like not just putting the face in the middle and leaving all that nothing above (the first photog class for everyone imho)), use the camera frame to compose our shots. That seems to me the essence of our photography, that we think about the moment we capture: a slight movement to capture more of what we really want to capture instead of what the camera machine puts directly in front of the viewfinder. And now the ability to take beaucoups shots costlessly! Whatever frame you use, when you think about the picture you’re taking, compose a shot, that is when you become an artist—a creator—and not just a button pusher.

    • Ritchie Roesch · February 20

      The GFX50R is actually the GFX camera that I would be most interested in. I know that Fujifilm has said they won’t likely make an updated version of it, but I hope they eventually do. Awesome that you found it for a great deal!

  4. Randy Kirk · February 19

    Coincidentally, about a month ago I changed most of my custom presets to 4:3 on my X-T5 and am really loving it! As a 35mm film user since (cough) the late 70’s I’m forever accustomed to 3:2 but — also — love medium format aspect ratios, especially how they look printed large. Cropping is great of course, but now that I’m diving in I feel there’s a distinct advantage to composing within the “limitations” of 4:3 and squarer formats. And if I happen to cut off something important on the side, the X-T5 still saves raw+jpeg with the original 3:2 ratio always saved in raw.. so there’s a backup.

    • Ritchie Roesch · February 20

      I definitely find it to be a challenge. And I think challenge is good… Limitations in art is where creativity lives.

  5. Khürt Williams · February 19

    I prefer the 3:2 aspect ration of 35mm film and 1:1 aspect ratio of 6×6 medium format film. While the programming effort could be minimal to add 65:24 or other ratios to Fuji cameras, I don’t think there is a big demand for it.

    I am quite happy with the aspect ratios on modern digital cameras. Like Ansel Adams and the many other pre-digital photographers I finialise my image after the shutter is clicked. Ansel used the dark room, I use software.

    I still have my first digital camera, a Sony DSC-S70 which I bought in 1999. That was the main digital camera until I bought my first DSLR in 2006. It’s so limited compared my iPhone, that I rarely use it. It has 4:3 and 3:2 capture aspect ratios.

    • Ritchie Roesch · February 20

      I mostly use 3:2 and (to a much lesser extent) 1:1 for the same reason: those are the aspect ratios of the films I used.

      Ansel Adams was THE darkroom master. Something interesting that I learned, though, is that he was a big fan of Polaroid cameras, and especially of the concept that the darkroom isn’t required. He wrote a chapter about it in his book Polaroid Land Photography. The whole book is fascinating, as are any from Ansel Adams.

      Those old digicams are becoming quite popular again. Any chance you want to part with yours?

      • Khürt Williams · February 20

        I think I have two. I’ll send you one.

      • Ritchie Roesch · February 21

        Thanks so much! 😀 😀 😀

  6. Francis.R. · February 27

    The selector in the lens of different ratios made me wish to try Panasonic LX compacts, although I suspect I’d need to edit in raw so I don’t wish anymore. The digicam fashion to me is just a consequence of film being expensive than rather liking its aesthetic of crushed hightlights, which I can do it in most smartphones by shooting in raw, as the raw files don’t use the sophisticated jpeg processing of blending many photos shoot in a quick way and extract data from them to have the maximum of dynamic range and sharpness. Personally I love 4:5 and 1:1 but to achieve them I don’t crop but stitch. I have tried 1:1 in my cameras and smartphones that offer it, but it is not the same sadly.

    • Ritchie Roesch · February 27

      Most of my 1:1 experience is with 120 film. Works well for that. I feel the X-T5 has plenty of resolution to make it especially practical, but I’ve yet to do it with that camera. Maybe a future project.

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