Defending Tatsuo Suzuki

This will be a controversial post. I’m a bit hesitant to publish it, because it will cause a stir, and I’m not looking for trouble. The Fuji X Weekly audience has been extraordinarily civil, which is something I’m extremely grateful for, as the internet can oftentimes be the exact opposite of civil. The internet has a way of bringing out the worst in people, perhaps because they can hide behind anonymity, or maybe there is a disconnect that makes interactions seem a bit less human; whatever the reason, people sometimes are rude or downright mean on the web. I’m asking right up front for civility and human kindness in regards to this article.

The video at the top, entitled My Milestone, was produced by Fujifilm to promote the X100V. It was promptly removed by Fujifilm because of public outcry. The featured photographer, Tatsuo Suzuki, is controversial, not for his images, but for how he captures those images. This video created quite a stir on the internet, and the worst in people showed up strongly in the comments of various articles regarding the video.

Here’s another video that shows Suzuki’s photographs and technique:

It seems as though the majority of people are against Suzuki’s style and agree that the video is controversial, and they believe that Fujifilm should never have associated themselves with him. Fujirumors and PetaPixel even conducted polls that confirm it. Now Suzuki is no longer a Fuji X Ambassador, either because Fujifilm dropped him or he dropped them. I’m going to go against popular opinion and defend Tatsuo Suzuki. The reaction to the Fujifilm video has been a huge overreaction.

As best as I can gather, what Suzuki did in the video that sparked all the outrage is demonstrate his “aggressive” style of shooting. He’s very much “in your face” as he walks the streets of Tokyo with his camera. It comes across as rude, as he invades people’s personal bubbles. My opinion is that he does this because, in Japan, people are extremely guarded, and the photographs that he captures, which are very good, would be impossible with any other technique. It’s the technique that he chooses to use in order to fulfill his photographic vision. It’s abrasive, yes, but also effective.

Suzuki is not the first to use this aggressive technique nor is he the most extreme with it. Bruce Gilden, Garry Winogrand and Eric Kim come to mind, and I’m sure there are many others. These are all successful and celebrated, albeit controversial, photographers, including Suzuki. They are far from the only controversial photographers out there. Even the legendary Steve McCurry has been called controversial at times. My point is this: just because you disagree with something doesn’t make it wrong.

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Man In Red – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

Was Suzuki doing anything illegal? No. In Japan, and many parts of the world, this type of photography is legal. Was he acting different than you or most people might act in public? Yes. Just because you don’t go around taking unsolicited closeup pictures of strangers doesn’t mean that it’s wrong to do so. Is it strange? Yes. Wrong? Not necessarily.

There’s a trend right now to shut down debate when faced with a differing opinion. If there’s something that you disagree with, it’s become common to attack the person whom one disagrees with. It used to be that people could “agree to disagree” and still be kind and caring and remain friends. Nowadays, if someone says or does something that you disagree with, you might attack their character and call them all sorts of names, demanding that they be stripped of their dignity until they change their ways. That’s exactly what I’ve seen in this debate. It’s really nasty and harmful. Those who go to war with their words against someone who did or said something that they disagree with, those people are the ones that stop dialogue, who encourage hate, and stifle civility. It’s good to say, “I don’t appreciate the way he conducts himself.” It’s not alright to call him all sorts of mean names and tear apart his character bit by bit.

I don’t know Tatsuo Suzuki personally. For all I know he’s the nicest guy in the world. Perhaps he helps little old ladies cross the street and rescues cats from trees and does all sorts of good deeds. Maybe he’s the “jerk” that people have been calling him, but maybe that couldn’t be further from the truth. You don’t know. I don’t know. Why assume the worst in him when you don’t know him? We’d all be better off if we assumed the best in others.

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Ghosts of the Past – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm XF10

When I do street photography, I like to be the guy that nobody notices who stealthily gets the shot without being seen. One of the big reasons why I do this is fear, but I tell myself that it’s also out of respect for those I might be photographing. Is that really the best approach? I noticed that a lot of people called Suzuki a “creep” because of how he conducts himself when he photographs. But what is creepier: the guy in the shadows hiding and lurking or the guy who makes it completely obvious to everyone around him exactly what he’s doing? While it’s much more shocking to see Suzuki at work, I wonder how shocked people would be to find out someone has been secretly photographing them without them noticing? While ignorance is bliss, I do think being open and honest is better than being secretive and sneaky. Most people don’t have the guts to be open and honest in candid street photography, so they hide.

You might be saying to all of this, “So what?” There’s something that happened to me a number of years ago. Somebody that I don’t know wrote a college paper on the evils of Photoshop. They argued that manipulating photographs of woman was causing a self-esteem crisis among young girls. I had written an article (for a different photography blog) defending Steve McCurry’s use of Photoshop. Remember when that was a big deal? Anyway, whoever this person was that wrote the paper quoted (really, misquoted) me in it, taking my words out of context, and made it seem as though I wanted young girls to have self-esteem problems. It was completely absurd! The university published this paper on their website. Someone that didn’t know me assumed the worst in me based on a quote that they didn’t understand, and unfairly attacked my character. That was completely wrong of them to do it! The lesson here is that we have to be very cautious not to do the same to others that this person did to me. Thankfully, I don’t think anybody cared what the paper said and nothing negative came out of it. In the case of Suzuki, someone did care what was said and something negative did come out of it.

Fujifilm knew who Tatsuo Suzuki was when they invited him to be an ambassador. They knew who he was when they made the promotional video for their product. They should have stood by him and defended him. If they lost a few customers over it, that’s alright because they knew who he was and despite that (because of that?) decided to partner with him. It seems pretty crummy to toss him aside just because some people complained. It also seems crummy that people don’t care to understand Suzuki’s point of view, and prefer the easy route of character assassination instead. I think that the best advice moving forward is to take a deep breath and examine ourselves first before biting someone’s head off. We have two ears and one mouth, so we should be quick to listen and slow to speak. Or, in this case, slow to type.

Fujifilm X100V

Fujifilm X100V

Fujifilm just announced the much anticipated X100V, which replaces the much loved X100F. The X100 series hasn’t changed much externally since it began. This is one of the most beautifully designed cameras in the digital era, so why change it? There’s no reason, so Fujifilm doesn’t. The X100V looks nearly identical to the original X100. What’s different is internal.

Fujifilm redesigned the lens. It looks the same and has the same specs, but with improved sharpness, particularly corner sharpness wide-open. The rear screen now tilts and is a touch-screen. Unfortunately, and this is perhaps the biggest external change, the D-Pad is now gone, but this isn’t a huge deal, as you get used to the touch controls pretty quickly. The viewfinder has been given a small upgrade. The X100V is weather-resistant, which is not the same as weather-sealed; it’s designed to handle the elements a little better than previous versions.

The biggest upgrade for this camera is the X-Trans IV sensor and processor. This is the same sensor and processor found in the X-T3, X-T30 and X-Pro3, yet the X100V has the new features found in the X-Pro3 that aren’t (yet) found in the X-T3 and X-T30, including the Classic Negative film simulation. The X100V is faster, more feature-rich, and has better video capabilities than the X100F.

Fujifilm X100V

Is the X100V a camera that you should buy? Whenever a new camera is released, it’s easy to want it. It’s easy to get caught up in the hype. It’s easy to have camera envy. The X100V will be a fantastic camera, no doubt about it! The X100 series cameras are easy to love. But should you really drop everything and order your copy today?

My opinion is this: if you already own the X100F, keep it! The upgrade isn’t significant enough to justify buying the new model. The X100F and the X100V are very similar to each other. If you wear out your X100F, then buy the new model, but if it still works just fine, don’t change cameras. If you have an older model, such as the original X100, X100S or X100T and are considering upgrading, I say sure, why not? But if those cameras still work and bring you joy, why rush to get the new model? If you are trying to decide between the X100F and X100V and money is no issue, go with the X100V, which is a little better than its predecessor. But if you are like most people and have a tight budget, the X100F is nearly as good and can be found for a little cheaper.

The X100V will be released on February 27 with an MSRP of $1,400.

This post contains affiliate links. I will be compensated a small amount if you make a purchase after clicking my links.

Fujifilm X100V black:   B&H   Amazon
Fujifilm X100V silver:   B&H   Amazon
Fujifilm X100F black:   B&H   Amazon
Fujifilm X100F silver:   B&H   Amazon

An interesting side note: I predicted that this version of the X100 would be called the X100V way back in September of 2017. The “S” in X100S stands for second, the “T” in X100T stands for third, and the “F” in X100F stands for fourth, so nobody really knew what the next one would be called. Some predicted X200, or X110, or X110F, or X100N (“N” for new or next), or X100A (because A is the first letter of the alphabet), or X100Z (because Z is the last letter of the aphabet). I took a guess at “V” because it’s the Roman numeral for five, and this is the fifth iteration of the X100. I have no idea what the next one after the X100V might be called. Any guesses?

Comparing JPEGs: Fujifilm X-T1 vs X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T30 with Astia film simulation.

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Fujifilm X-T1 with Astia film simulation.

I’ve been trying to figure out how to make my Fujifilm X-Trans III & IV film simulation recipes compatible with my X-T1 camera, which has an X-Trans II sensor. The X-T1 has the same film simulations as my Fujifilm X-T30, minus Acros and Eterna, but many of the customization options to fine-tune the image are different. For the X-T1, everything maxes out at plus and minus two, while X-Trans III & IV cameras can go to plus and minus four on many settings. There are other tools that the newer cameras have that the older ones don’t. The simple fact is this: X-Trans III & IV recipes aren’t directly compatible with X-Trans I & II cameras; can I recreate those recipes for the older models?

When I looked at the pictures that I captured with the different film simulations on my X-T1, it seemed like the results were different than with the same film simulations on my X-T30. Do the film simulations look different on different sensors? I did some tests to determine what is the same and what is not. I think there are some subtle changes, and you won’t get precisely the same results from X-Trans II as you will from X-Trans III and IV. It’s close, but not exact.

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Fujifilm X-T30 with Monochrome film simulation.

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Fujifilm X-T1 with Monochrome film simulation.

Something that I determined is that, with everything set at 0, X-Trans II has slightly darker shadows and X-Trans IV has slightly lighter highlights. It makes it seem like the pictures from my X-T30 are brighter than those from my X-T1, although mid-tones are identical. I made the mistake in the test below (with the exception of Provia) of trying to compensate for that by dropping the exposure by 1/3 stop on my X-T30, which made it darker than the X-T1. That overcompensated for the highlight and shadow difference, while making the mid-tones all wrong. Instead of lowering the exposure on the X-T30, I could have adjusted shadow and highlight by one (-1 Shadow and +1 Highlight) on the X-T1 to get a closer match. Actually, if I had adjusted shadow and highlight (+1 Shadow and -1 Highlight) on the X-T30, it would have been an even closer match, as I also discovered that +1 on the two cameras are different. I think that +1 on the X-T1 is equal to about +1.25 on the X-T30 (if it could adjust in 1/4 increments), and +2 is equal to about +2.5. I think that, because highlights have a brighter starting point on the X-T30, +2 Highlight is about the same on both cameras, while +2 Shadow on the X-T1 is actually closer to +3 on the X-T30. Interestingly enough, I think that -1 and -2 highlight and shadow on the two cameras are similar to each other, and with the same exact minus settings applied to both cameras, the X-T30 will have lighter highlights and shadows than the X-T1. Color on the X-T1 seems to move in +/-1.25 increments when compared to the X-T30, which means +2 Color on the X-T1 is in-between +2 and +3 on the X-T30, while -2 Color on the X-T1 is in-between -2 and -3 on the X-T30.

There’s another difference that I discovered between X-Trans II and X-Trans IV: the white balance is not the same. The X-T1 is actually slightly warmer, leaning towards yellow or yellow-green. It’s not a huge difference, but it’s not exactly the same, which means a slight adjustment will be required to the white balance shift for recreating recipes. What I anticipate as I attempt to translate X-Trans III & IV recipes for X-Trans II is that some will be easy, and some will be difficult or maybe impossible. Because there are less tools to work with on my X-T1, the aesthetic won’t be as precise, as it’s not as fine-tune-able. Despite that, I hope to have some good film simulation recipes very soon for those with older Fujifilm X cameras.

Provia:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

Velvia:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

Astia:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

Classic Chrome:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

Pro Neg. Hi:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

Pro Neg. Std:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

-2:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

-1:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

+1:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

+2:

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Fujifilm X-T30

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Fujifilm X-T1

+3:

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Fujifilm X-T30

+4:

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Fujifilm X-T30

Fujifilm Monochrome

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Mountains Dressed In Monochrome – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Leica recently announced the M10 Monochrom, which is their third black-and-white only camera. It can’t capture a color picture because it doesn’t have a Bayer array. It only does black-and-white photography. Fujifilm should do something similar, even though most won’t buy it.

Believe it or not, there’s actually an advantage to a monochrome sensor. With a typical Bayer color array, only 50% of the light-sensitive sensor elements are recording luminosity information, while the other 50% are recording color information. With an X-Trans sensor, 55% of the light-sensitive sensor elements are recording luminosity information while 45% are recording color information. With a monochrome sensor, 100% of the light-sensitive sensor elements are recording luminosity information. Because of this, you get a higher perceived resolution, as pictures will appear more richly detailed, and there’s more shadow latitude, which also improves high-ISO capabilities. You can also use color filters like with black-and-white film.

I think an X-Pro3-M, a black-and-white only version of the X-Pro3, or an X100V-M, a black-and-white only version of the upcoming X100V, would do well enough commercially. Yes, it’s clearly a niche product, as there’s only a tiny market for it, yet Leica found a way to make it profitable, and Fujifilm could, too. There are plenty of photographers who use their X-Pro or X100 series camera to only shoot black-and-white. A Monochrome version would make things simpler for them, while improving perceived resolution, dynamic range and high-ISO. And, Fujifilm has a cool marketing angle: call it the X-Pro3 Acros or X100V Acros. People would eat that up. Increase the price a couple hundred dollars and it would sell well enough to be profitable, in my non-expert opinion.

The flip side to this is that Fujifilm X-Trans cameras, particularly X-Trans III and IV cameras that have the Acros film simulation, are already fantastic for black-and-white photography. Would a monochrome-only camera really produce enough of an improved image to justify buying one? I think that’s a tough question to answer, but my guess is probably not for most people. Still, a monochrome-only camera wouldn’t be for “most people” as it would be for a very small crowd, and for those people the difference would indeed justify buying it. For most, your current X-Trans camera is a great black-and-white photography tool, and there’s no need to get a monochrome-only camera. Some, however, would absolutely love to have one, and I think there’s enough of those people that such a camera could be profitable for Fujifilm, if they ever wished to create one. I hope they do.

Project: Farmington Bay, Part 2

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Farmington Bay Lake – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

Part 1

My project this year is to photograph the Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area in Farmington, Utah. My goal is visit this place with a camera at least once per month throughout 2020, but hopefully more often than that. I especially want to make it to Farmington Bay when there’s some interesting weather or a chance of great light. This was my second visit.

The Farmington Bay is a wetland along the Great Salt Lake, where freshwater meets saltwater. There are creeks and small lakes and lots of tall grass. It’s a popular spot for bird-watching. Farmington Bay is massive, and I’ve only explored maybe 10% of it at most, but probably not even that much. There’s a road that takes you fairly deep into the wetland, but the rest is accessible only by foot or bike or boat.

I captured these photographs using my Fujifilm X-T1 and Fujinon 35mm f/2. I used my Velvia and Monochrome recipes, plus a couple of experimental settings, but mostly Velvia. Farmington Bay is both beautiful and lonely. There are great expanses and fantastic views. I feel like I stumbled across a great treasure when I found this place. I look forward to returning with my camera in hand.

B&W

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Dike Road – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Dirt Road – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Gate – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Wasatch From Farmington Bay – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Cloud Reflection – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Ice in the Water – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Shore Post – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

Color

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Cattails On The Shore – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Red Door – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Tree in January – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Red Gate – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Red Cloth on Fence – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Greenland – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Green & White – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Eye of the Beholder – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Drain – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Wetland Grass – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Wetland – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Wetland Lake – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Bridge to Nowhere – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Eagle on Bridge – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Road Along The Water – Farmington Bay, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

My Fujifilm X-T1 Arrived!

Fujifilm X-T1

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I purchased a used Fujifilm X-T1 for only $300. The condition of the camera said “low shutter count” and “in like-new condition.” When you’re purchasing things off the internet, my experience is that it’s rarely exactly as described. Oftentimes the condition is overstated. I wasn’t sure what I was going to find when the package arrived. Well, the packaged was delivered a couple days ago; I opened up the box with anxious curiosity and found inside…

…a near mint Fujifilm X-T1. Yea! It looked brand new except it was missing the sync cap. It really did appear unused! It even had the original firmware installed. I don’t know the story behind it, but it seems like maybe someone used it a couple of times and didn’t like it, so they boxed it up and it sat on a shelf for four or five years. It’s very difficult for me to believe that I snagged this beauty for only $300. This was a $1,300 camera not very long ago. I remember seeing the X-T1 on sale for “only” $1,000 and that was considered a bargain at the time. At $300, the camera’s a steal!

Fujifilm X-T1 Fujinon 35mm f/2

Fujifilm X-T1 Blog

Unfortunately, digital is disposable. People buy cameras and use them for a year or two or maybe three, and then they move on to whatever is new. It’s a byproduct of technology that advances quickly, and also habits formed when digital photography was new and not especially good. There were significant leaps when new camera models came out. There are still big leaps happening today, but we’ve reached a point of diminishing returns, and those leaps don’t mean as much in practical application.

My first SLR was a 20-year-old Canon AE-1, which I purchased over 20 years ago when I was in Photography 101 in college. I used the camera for a number of years. Can you imagine someone buying a 20-year-old digital camera today to use as their main camera? And using that camera for five or more years? That’s unheard of, but it used to be normal in the days of film. Roughly 10 years ago digital camera technology reached a point where people could keep it and use it for years to come because the quality was there. There’s no reason that a five-year-old camera can’t have 15 or more years of life in it as long as the mechanical components continue to work. People often don’t keep them around long enough to find out.

Fujifilm X-T1 Dials

Fujifilm X-T1 Blog

The Fujifilm X-T1 is downright fantastic! It’s plenty quick. The image quality is great. The camera is weather sealed and feels very solid. It’s a little smaller than the X-T2 and X-T3 and not all that much bigger and heavier than my X-T30. I do wish it had the focus joystick and some of the JPEG options that the newer cameras have, but it’s not a big deal that the camera lacks those things. It’s still a very good camera capable of capturing beautiful pictures.

The photographs below are the first images captured with my new Fujifilm X-T1. These are camera-made JPEGs. I don’t have any recipes yet, but you can rest assured that I will be creating some, and when I do I will share them on Fuji X Weekly. Even though the camera is five-years-old, I’m very excited to go out and shoot with the brand-new-to-me X-T1.

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Hardware Carts – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Americana Neighborhood – Roy, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Equal Rights – Uintah, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Coffee Beans – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Selfie – Unitah, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

3 New Cameras Confirmed

Fujifilm Film Simulation Blog

In my last post I mentioned the rumor that Fujifilm will be releasing three new cameras this spring. The details were pretty limited at that time, but a lot more information has come out since then (thank you, Fujirumors), so I wanted to pass along a quick update to those who are interested.

One of the three cameras will be the X-T4, which will be the successor for both the X-T3 and X-H1. It will be nearly identical to the X-T3, but with a slightly larger body, and will feature in-body-image-stabilization (IBIS) and 6K video capabilities. I’m not sure if it will use the X-Trans IV sensor and X-Processor 4, or if X-Trans V is right around the corner. Clearly, it’s a merger of the X-T and X-H lines, and will be Fujifilm’s flagship APS-C camera. I’m sure it will be priced higher than the X-T3.

Another camera will be the X100V, which will indeed have a redesigned lens. The X100 series has had the same lens from the beginning, so this will be the first with different optics. What will be different about it is unknown. Details are pretty vague right now, but I’m sure in the coming weeks we’ll know much more.

The third camera will be the X-T200, the successor to the X-T100. It sounds like it will be essentially the same camera as the X-A7, but in the shape of the X-T100. In other words, the rear screen, auto-focus and video capabilities will be much improved, and everything else will be pretty much the same.

And, apparently, there will be no new GFX camera in 2020, but sometime in 2021 instead. They are working on one, that’s already been determined, but I guess aren’t ready to release it for awhile. That concludes your gear update for today.

3 New Fujifilm Cameras Coming Soon!

Fujifilm X100F Blog

There’s some exciting news that I want to pass along to you. I don’t want Fuji X Weekly to be completely centered on gear, but I also want to keep you in the know, and so I try to keep things balanced. Anyway, according to Fujirumors.com, there are three new Fujifilm cameras coming this spring. One is the X100V, which will replace the excellent X100F. Another, which might be called X-T3s or X-T5 (in Japan, the number four is bad luck), will replace the not-very-old X-T3. The third is a mystery, but I’m betting that it’s a medium-format GFX camera. Let’s briefly talk about each.

The X100V has been whispered and rumored across the internet for many months. There’s no surprise that it’s coming soon. What we don’t know is how much different it will be from the X100F. It will certainly have the 26-megapixel X-Trans IV sensor and processor, and probably all of the new JPEG tools of the X-Pro3, but beyond that nobody knows. There’s been speculation for some time that Fujifilm redesigned the lens, but I don’t know if that’s true or not. It could be a mild update to the X100F, which makes sense, because if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Or it could be a moderate overhaul, similar to what Fujifilm did with the X-Pro3. We will know soon enough.

It’s very surprising to me that Fujifilm will be announcing a replacement to the X-T3 so soon. Why? Because the X-T3 will only be one-and-a-half years old when its successor is released. Digital technology advances quickly, but I’m not sure there’s enough to justify a whole new camera in that short amount of time. Is there a new sensor coming? New processor? If not, a simple firmware update would breathe a second wind into what’s already a successful camera model. If there’s nothing big to separate the upcoming model from the current one, I don’t think it will be a huge success because there’s no incentive to buy the new camera. Why pay more for something that’s essentially exactly the same? It will be interesting to see what Fujifilm has up its sleeve on this one.

The third camera is an unknown model, but fuzzy pictures have leaked out of Japan of a new GFX body. It could be a non-IBIS 100-megapixel camera. It could be a 50-megapixel body with IBIS. It could be the first GFX with an X-Trans sensor. Fujifilm has done well in the medium-format market, quickly setting themselves up as the leader, so it would be unsurprising if they added another camera to the GFX lineup.

What other cameras should Fujifilm release in 2020? I’d like to see an X70 but with an X-Trans IV sensor. How about an X-H2? While it was well-received by users, I don’t believe the X-H1 was especially commercially successful, but Fujifilm should have at least one APS-C camera with IBIS for those who want it, so an X-H2 makes sense. That is, unless the X-T3 successor has IBIS. The X-E line is due for an update. Keep the body the same, but put the X-Trans IV sensor inside, and you have an X-E5. Simple enough, right? It will be exciting to see whatever is forthcoming from Fujifilm, and I will do my best on the Fuji X Weekly blog to keep you updated, but hopefully without overwhelming you with gear posts.

Cheap Fujifilm Cameras

Fujifilm X-E1 Camera Photography Blog

I’ve been searching the last couple of days for a new Fujifilm camera. Actually, a used camera. You might recall that back in September I posted that I wanted to buy a full-spectrum camera for infrared photography. I’ve had an interest in infrared photography for a long time, and I’ve been eager to try it, but the funds to buy such a camera have eluded me. I did get the green light to spend $300 or less on a used camera to eventually (maybe mid-2020) convert to full-spectrum. There are a few different companies that will convert your camera to infrared, and the going rate seems to be about $300, plus you still need to buy various filters, so it’s not exactly a cheap endeavor. I have been searching for a cheap Fujifilm camera that’s hopefully gently used, since I need to keep costs down in order to make this dream a reality.

When I looked at various places, such as eBay, Facebook Marketplace, KEH, etc., I was surprised to see a lot of great options for $300 or less. I found some Fujifilm X-E1 bodies for under $200, one as cheap as $150. The X-E1, or “Sexy One” as it was once called, was my introduction to Fujifilm cameras, and is a solid choice. I saw an X-T10 that claimed to have a low shutter count but with some serious scratches for $200. There were several X-E2 bodies for around $250, and an X-E2s for under $300. I was surprised to see a few X-T1 bodies for $300. There were also some non-X-Trans Fujifilm cameras, such as the X-A3, X-A5 and X-T100, for under $300. I had a lot to choose from.

As I was looking at all of these cameras, I was reminded of some articles I’ve written. About a year-and-a-half ago I published Digital Is Disposable, which is about how we continuously buy the latest gear and don’t keep what we own for very long. It’s just as true now as it was then. People (myself included) upgrade their gear much too quickly, and cameras that are still excellent get tossed aside like an old moldy bag of tangerines just because there’s something else that’s brand new. Last week I briefly touched on this topic in my Photography Investments article, and just the other day in 5 Tips To Become A Better Photographer. It’s better to keep your gear longer and spend your money on experiences instead of upgrading your very capable and practically still new camera.

The flip side to this coin, however, is that if you want a cheap yet excellent camera, there’s plenty to pick from. Maybe you’d like a second camera body. Well, you can have one for $300 or less, maybe even as low as $150! Perhaps your kid or spouse has been begging for a camera, but you don’t want to spend a bunch of money. Why not buy something used and affordable instead of brand new and expensive? I’m just throwing this out there in case you didn’t realize that used Fujifilm gear is going for so little.

I purchased a Fujifilm X-T1 that claims to have a very low shutter count and is in like-new condition for only $300. That seems like a fantastic deal! Sometimes someone else’s description doesn’t match how I would describe it, so when it arrives I’ll see just how “very low” the shutter count is and just how “like new” it actually is. If it’s in halfway decent shape I’ll be happy. With any luck sometime in the coming six months or so I’ll be able to convert it to full-spectrum, something I’ve wanted to do for many years. One man’s junk is another’s treasure, as the saying goes, and I’m hoping this camera will prove to be a treasure for me.

Photoessay: Passing Through Nevada, Part 2: Monochrome

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Terrible Ford – Boulder City, NV – Fujifilm X-T30

Part 1: Color

I’ve passed through Nevada many times, often only stopping for gas or lunch. It never seems to be my destination. I’m headed somewhere else, and I have to go through the Silver State to get to where I’m going. While I have stayed longer than a few hours, most of the time I’m through Nevada so quickly that it’s easy to forget that I was ever there. The photographs in this article were captured during those times where I just passed through, and didn’t stay. In fact, many of them were captured from inside my car. I hope that you enjoy this set!

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Plaza Hound – Las Vegas, NV – Fujifilm X-T30

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I-15 Overpass – Las Vegas, NV – Fujifilm X100F

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Chance of Rain – Las Vegas, NV – Fujifilm X-T30

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Abstract Roof Lines – Las Vegas, NV – Fujifilm X-T30

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Empty Hoppers – Las Vegas, NV – Fujifilm X-T30

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Palm Shadow – Las Vegas, NV – Fujifilm X100F

See also: November Arizona