X-H1 - First Impressions - Not Good

Started 8 months ago | Discussions thread
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Manny82 Contributing Member • Posts: 636
X-H1 - First Impressions - Not Good

Evening all, long time forum user here, although I haven't posted in a few years.

I have a D750, X-T1, X-T2, and just purchased an X-H1. I've come back to Fuji having realised how much I missed the form factor, classic chrome, and basically that Fuji magic that no other camera maker gives.

Having just received the X-H1 today, first thing I did was update it to the latest firmware. I purchased it mainly for the IBIS and let me say that it is amazing. Testing with the 16mm f/1.4 WR and 35mm f/1.4, I'm consistently getting sharp images down to 1/4 second, and in some cases at even slower shutter speeds. So the IBIS is amazing. That's about where the love affair ends unfortunately.

Compared to the X-T1 and X-T2, the X-H1 is just too big and too heavy. Ironic since I use a JB Camera Designs hand grip on the X-T1, still the X-H1 feels too large and too heavy. I don't like the front and rear command dials either - they are too stiff compared the X-T series which are much smoother and less 'notchy'.

Battery life is atrocious - fair enough I only tested with my fully charged NP-W126 batteries and not the NP-W126s that comes with the X-H1(and it does warn you every time you turn the camera on that these batteries don't last as long) - but 145 shots and one 5-min movie on a full battery is ridiculous. I can't imagine the NP-W126s giving that much more juice??

Another thing I noticed is that despite being able to turn off IS in the menu (continuous / shooting only / off) none of these modes actually disables IS completely. All it does is stops it being 'active' but in any of these modes, you can still hear the IBIS whirring away if you hold the camera close. If you turn the camera off, then obviously it stops. Don't know if this is a firmware issue, or normal behaviour, but it might explain the atrocious battery life and it's weird that you can't fully disable it.

I have also had the Geotagging feature on permanently. This requires a constant bluetooth connection to your phone. Some questions I had before I purchased the X-H1 (but couldn't find any answers for on here so it may be handy for you), it automatically reconnects when you turn the camera on, and the geotagging applies to both the raw and jpeg images. Something interesting though is that it doesn't sync often enough for my liking. I wanted to be sure that it wasn't just tagging every image with the first location data when synced with the phone, so I drove around the area, stopped off at various places and took a shot. Checking on the camera showed that the images were tagged in 'chunks' basically meaning that even though some where a quarter of a mile apart, they shared the exact same co-ordinates. So I'm guessing the location data refreshes like every 60 seconds or so - perhaps longer. If Fuji would improve this in a future firmware update so that the user could choose the refresh interval themselves, that would be perfect. Checking the geotags in Lightroom Map conformed that many of the images shared the same co-ordinates even though they were shot at different parts on the route.

Other than that, I'm not a movie guy but 4K in Eterna played back on the MacBook Pro looks amazing.

Overall though I just don't like the large size and weight of the X-H1, nor the horrible feel to the dials compared to the X-T series. I'm going to stick my neck out on the line and say that the X-H1 feels toyish compared to the X-T line, and for me just doesn't have that Fuji magic or gave me the same excitement I got when I purchased the X-T1 and X-T2. Heck, I'll even admit I prefer the more traditional sound of the shutter on the X-T2 - crazy I know but just shows, sometimes YouTube reviews should be taken with a pinch of salt.

Perhaps it's something that grows on you, but right now, it's going back and I'll happily keep shooting with the X-T2. I'll sure miss that IBIS and silent movie mode though.

The X-H1 still has a few things that need ironing out. For me, the X-H1 is no replacement to the X-T2 and shouldn't be compared to it either. Let's hope the X-T3 (if there is one) retains the same form factor and Fuji magic of the X-T1 and 2 with the addition of IBIS.

I really wanted to like the X-H1 - shame!



 Manny82's gear list:Manny82's gear list
Nikon D750 Fujifilm X-H1 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Fujifilm XF 35mm F1.4 R Tamron SP 24-70mm F2.8 Di VC USD +12 more
Fujifilm X-H1 Fujifilm X-T1 Fujifilm X-T2 Nikon D750
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