DPReview: Fujifilm X-T4 Review: Hands-on with Fujifilm’s newest flagship camera – Commentary

“Is the Fujifilm X-T4 the king of APS-C cameras? We have the answer!…”

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Fujifilm X-T4 with Fujinon XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR zoom lens.

Commentary

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One design inspiration for Fujifilm’s X-T4? Leica Leicaflex SL with Summicron-R 50mm f/2.0, made in 1968. The SL2 is considered one of the best analog-era 35mm SLRs.

I missed out on seeing a pre-production Fujifilm X-4 at Fujifilm Australia’s event at Ted’s World of Imaging earlier this year when COVID-19 struck and I could not attend due to highly susceptible family members back home.

Such touch-and-try preview events can be useful but production versions are the real deal when it comes to assessing potential new hardware purchases.

DPReview is in prime position for obtaining early production releases and recently published its two-hander video review of the Fujifilm X-T4 alongside an in-depth text review plus image gallery.

A cursory skim through confirms my initial assessment of the desirability of the X-T4 for documentary stills photography and video production as an independent self-funded practitioner without the means to acquire every bit of hardware that comes down the turnpike, so I will be forgoing an X-T4 unless circumstances change.

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Should some of us wait for the X-H2? Fujifilm X-H1 with VPB-XH1 battery grip and Fujinon XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR professional zoom lens.

Or we just might win the lottery. Ha!

COVID-19 and its worldwide economic havoc and consequent uncertainty for independent creatives means more belt-tightening and skipping over new models while trying to get the best out of past purchases.

There is plenty to like about the X-T4 for stills and video, especially video, and it is clearly one of the current best options for available light documentary work in either.

It is excellent to see that Fujifilm has now entered the small camera IBIS era (in-body image stabilization) and is reportedly approaching the IBIS in Panasonic’s Lumix DC-GH5, DC-G9 and S-Series 35mm cameras such as the Lumix DC-S1H, DC-S1 and DC-S1R.

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Cinematographer, director, producer, writer Emily Skye of She Wolf Films production company with Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5 camera.

Some reviewers are speculating that Fujifilm may issue firmware updates to improve the X-T4’s IBIS, and that will be quite an achievement if they do so.

I have the most experience with the GH5’s stabilization in combination with non-stabilized autofocus lenses like those in Olympus’ M.Zuiko Pro range as well as manual-focus vintage lenses of East German design and German or Japanese manufacture, and can testify to the camera’s excellent IBIS for stills and video.

My baptism into the joys of IBIS occurred with my still-beloved Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 during a vacation away from Fujifilm cameras when the company had yet to get its head round video.

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Australian photojournalist Daniel Berehulak using Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8’s fully articulated LCD monitor. Now we have full articulation in the X-T4!

The GX8 has an earlier, stills-only version of IBIS than the GH5, but I soon discovered how useful, essential even, stabilization is for available darkness documentary work and I cannot imagine ever going back to non-stabilized cameras or at least non-stabilized lenses on such cameras.

Subsequently I picked up a copy of the legendary though often overlooked Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 Aspheric Mega OIS stabilized zoom lens and would have added the equally impressive Panasonic Lumix G Vario 35-100mm f/4-5.6 Aspheric Mega OIS zoom, had I found a secondhand copy at a good price at the time.

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Panasonic DMW-XLR1 Microphone Adapter for Panasonic Lumix G and S-Series cameras. Fujifilm needs to make one of these for its more video-oriented cameras.

Without the pleasure of access to a production version of the Fujifilm X-T4, I am reluctant to express any opinions about it here so have added links to articles by well-qualified reviewers in the list of links below.

I do hope, though, that Fujifilm will come up with the all-in-one APS-C/Super 35 alternative to Panasonic’s excellent Lumix GH5, GH5S and G9 Micro Four Thirds cameras, whether in the coming Fujifilm X-H1 or in the successor to the X-T4, perhaps to be named the X-T5.

Time will tell.

Fujifilm X-T4

The Fujifilm X-T4 for moviemaking

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Fujifilm X-T4 rigged for video production. Image courtesy of Fujifilm-X.com.

Links