Preface: May be immediately contradicting a recent blog post, but that has never stopped me before and it will not now either. Meant as less of this brand is better than that and more of a self intervention to fight off a favorite brand and a desirable sensor format.
A fine camera. Honestly this should have been it. The “Trade everything!” camera for me. Why? Well I am fixing to tell you.
- Medium format.
- Fuji. I really rather like Fuji.
- Uses the latest and greatest GFX body.
- Costs less than a Sony A7RIV.
- A capable, “affordable” kit zoom ($500 if purchased with the kit instead of standalone) released with it.
- <ahem> medium format, medium format, medium format.
I thought I would have been shouting “Take my money!”, but no. Why? First the long-winded objective reasons and then the short version.
Long Winded Objective
- New body is cool, but that sensor is ooooooooooooold. The same sensor that has been used in countless cameras up to now with the limitations that brings.
- Contrast only AF. Though usable by all accounts I expect more at this price point.
- Old video specs. Admittedly not why I would buy a camera like this, but that is a lot of spend for specs that could be matched or outdone by nearly any other camera on the market in the last few years. No better than a Pentax K-1 that came out in 2016.
- An affordable kit zoom is nice, but I am not buying into medium format for a 27.65mm f/3.56 to 55.3mm f/4.42 (per mmcalc.com) full frame equivalent lens.
- Lastly the item that stopped me from purchasing a GFX 50R a couple of years ago. The price of the two lenses I would require to get the medium format image quality I am looking for are eye-wateringly expensive. Worth it, but more than I am willing or able to spend after dropping $4,000 on a camera body.
But make no mistake. If I had the disposable loot required to loosen my wallet I would buy this camera or one of the other GFX cameras in a minute.
But there is a simpler reason that I will pass that is short and sweet.
I do not need it.
In the time Fujifilm has spent developing this camera I have realized that what I am looking for in a medium format camera can be found elsewhere.
Thin Depth of Field
- A major driving force behind my obsession with medium format. But when I step back and look at the specs of the GFX lens I was most interested in, the 110mm f/2, it works out to 86.9mm f/1.58. There are plenty of full frame lenses on the market for many brands that either match that spec, better it, or approximate the look I am going for.
- This was a big one, but once again there are plenty of full frame cameras that now match and even surpass 50MP. I will grant you that the more expensive 100MP options have no full frame rivals, but I admit that I do not need 100MP or even 50MP to get the detail I am looking for. An odd duck 29MP provides more detail than I need. Case in point.
- Ability to captures tones that especially become apparent for me with black and white images. Again, there are plenty of cameras on the market provide the detail I am looking for. And once again a 29MP odd ball came through again.
The Look of The Lenses
- A medium format lens adapter did the trick for me, but there are plenty of full frame lenses that could approximate the look also.
Cinder Block Build
So what would have convinced me to go all trade-a-palooza? Well…
- A lower price. $3,200 at most. Why less than the A7IV? Simple. It is less capable in every measurable criteria other than having a larger sensor. That alone is not enough to move the needle for me.
- Phase detect AF. A must for any camera released nowadays for me.
- 4K video. A must for any camera released nowadays for me.
- This last one is not likely to change any time soon. Less expensive fast lenses.
Would I understand someone buying this camera? Certainly. This is would be a great option:
- If you must have a medium format camera here you go. It is your lucky day. Would not fault anyone at all.
- If you already have a higher priced GFX body and would like to have a second body here you go.
Like I said earlier, if I had the disposable loot required to loosen my wallet I would buy this camera or one of the other GFX cameras in a minute myself.
Who knows. I may change my mind. Would not be the first time. But for now I am good.
Marking myself safe from yet another new camera release and barrage of blog posts and Youtube videos.