The future for Fuji cameras

Started Dec 31, 2013 | Discussions thread
Graham Hill Senior Member • Posts: 1,355
Re: The future for Fuji cameras

ZTJ wrote:

I share a similar concern. However, I do believe I'll stick with it at least another year. The upcoming lenses for this year complete what I want for a minimum system (specifically, 10-24/4, 23/1.4, 56/1.2, 55-200) and probably more. So at least I don't feel I have to worry about them dumping the market (again) before providing a competent system for me.

But, in the long term, it's highly questionable. It's also very curious as to why they haven't done well. I have to guess it is marketing. I have seen NEX, Olympus, and all the other more successful brands marketed all over, even regular tv. I have never once seen any Fuji adverts anywhere outside of photography sites and even that is rare. Who even knows about this? Early adopters and gear obsessors and that's about it.

I too rarely ever see any Fujifilm adverts.  In Hong Kong, you can see an almost unlimited number of signs for Canon, Nikon, Sony, and even Olympus.  Fujifilm?  Almost nonexistent.  It is a real shame that they do not try to get their name out there.

During my recent trip to Japan, I looked for Fujifilm ads and again, came up virtually empty.  What was more depressing was going to Fujifilm's corporate headquarters.  There I visited a large exhibt that they have built, showing the history of photography, the history of Fujifilm, ALL of their current cameras on display, as well as a nice photography art exhibit.  In downtown Tokyo, a city of 35 million people, at 1pm I was the ONLY person in the whole place.  I could NOT understand that.  Go to a Sony and Nikon store and they are packed with people.  Fujifilm's store was like a library.

I only have minor wishes for Fuji to change certain things and I have no reason to believe it would make any difference in their success, but, I wish they would ditch this X-trans sensor.

I agree with you.  The X Trans sensor is what kept me from buying their recent line of cameras.  I would like to upgrade my X100, but not if it comes with an X Trans sensor.  I will hold off until Fujifilm moves onto something else (they always do).

Between false detail (not much of a tradeoff for false color) and a nightmare of randomness across RAW processors, it hasn't been very impressive to me. As a big part of my photography is landscape, the goofy loss of detail in foliage is glaring. I can usually overlook it and just print a little smaller, but, still, it's an annoying limit. I would really rather they use a proven sensor such as whatever is in the D7100 or NEX-7 with higher resolution and still very good normalized noise performance. Even a 20mp sensor would be a help, particularly if it was standard bayer.

And if they can come up with something even better, then more power to them, but, I think that overall the X-trans produces generally blurrier images (by nature of 3x3 color arrays as well as the green "blocks" in those semi-random arrays) and frankly, many photographers pick up on this when they have no devotion to the brand. They probably attribute it to lenses or inaccurate AF or some other nonsense.

I love the Fuji lens creed. No other 23/1.4 exists for APS-C. The lenses available really do make it hard to justify Sony's new A7/A7R offering as sweet as it seems. I had an A7 for a few weeks but couldn't get past how prone it was to posterization and magenta "staining" versus other cameras. Sure all cameras can do it but it seemed worse on the A7, probably related to the massive vignetting on all the native or other short register lenses, I guess. No idea. Just got sick of having to address it in post so much.

The A7's shutter volume is horrific.  I lost interest in that camera real fast once i heard how loud it was.

I've been through a number of systems and seen many pros and cons of each, APS-C, full frame, Micro Four Thirds. Overall, despite my complaints about the sensor, I feel Fuji has hit the best middle ground compromise for an overall system. Sure, there's no native 35/1.4 equivalent, but 35/2 is pretty good! Good enough for the wonderful RX1 which I also owned. I really like the 23/1.4.

I think in general, the system has a lot going for it. There are some issues, though. Besides the sensor (which is going to be a matter of opinion most of the time, as with many things), we have very noise prime lenses. The 23/1.4 sounds like the AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D on a full frame camera. Though the noise there is coming from the screwdrive, whereas the noise in the 23/1.4 is coming from the lens. It's crazy. It does give the impression of being poorly made or outdated even though AF performance seems fine for APS-C mirrorless. I'm shooting on the X-E2 btw.

I have not heard the 23mm lens, but the 35mm and 60mm lenses have AF motors sourced straight out of the 1980's.  Coming from Canon's USM lenses, Fujifilm's AF motors are extremely primitive.

I also think the retro look is a terrible idea and only appeals to a very small subset of buyers.

I'm not sure that is true.

Obviously, some hint of retro is interesting, but, the best selling cameras right now all look modern in their respective markets.

Fuji cameras and lenses are simply ugly when you ignore the nostalgia.

Now I really disagree.

This could have some impact on sales, obviously. I personally don't care that much and can look past plastic fake leather and lenses with aesthetics reminiscent of some kind of stack of industrial pipe fittings.

I don't want to sound too negative. I *DO* like the cameras. I've been shooting Fuji for almost one whole year now, and as an obsessive system switcher, that's a pretty big deal. I would love to know that a more complete total system offering is on the horizon. I look forward to the announcements expected at CES. I *REALLY* hope that there is a longer lens on the roadmap. I want to do some wildlife photography and I need 400mm or more. I don't want to use another system just for that if I can help it.

That said, depending on what's announced, I may be tempted to pull the plug and jump back to DSLRs. I've been really tempted by a D7100 + Sigma 18-35/1.8, 50/1.4, and Tamron 150-600 combination. But, I am trying to convince myself to stick around long enough to own, use, and enjoy the Fuji 56/1.2 coming eventually...

Well, that was a hell of a ramble. Long point made short: I see, through a haze, that Fuji has the best APS-C system in the oven. It's not obvious to general consumers. It isn't marketed in any meaningful way. It has some annoying warts that impact some shooters. It doesn't fulfill all general needs and can simply not be considered for a single full coverage system. All sorts of problems stand in Fuji's way. I just hope they see this system as a long term investment. They'll probably need another 3-4 years before they can attract many system switchers.

They have to appeal to someone besides bloggers and gearheads.

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