Does Camera Accessories Maker JJC Produce a Better Fujifilm X-Pro2 Rubber Eyecup?

I just came across a possible solution to the Fujifilm X-Pro2 camera’s less than perfect rubber eyecup when researching for an article on the coming Fujifilm X-Pro3, and am sharing what I know so far. 

Fujifilm chose a rather minimalist solution for the rubber eyecup on the X-Pro2’s viewfinder eyepiece, one that seems to have forgotten the needs of those of use who must wear eyeglasses, just as they did when designing the X-Pro2’s less than perfect eye relief and viewfinder magnification. 

 I hope that these design solutions will be improved in the coming X-Pro3, but meanwhile I have been searching for ways to improve the experience of using my X-Pro2. 

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JJC EF-XPRO2G silicone rubber replacement eyecup for Fujifilm X-Pro2 cameras. This version is for photographers who wear eyeglasses.

Since getting back into photography and video with recent generations of digital cameras, there is not a single camera that I have used without modifying it in some way in order to improve my experience with it.

I usually do that via camera-maker or third party accessories including hand grips, vertical battery grips, lens hoods, rubber eyecups, terminal covers, camera straps, thumb grips, self-adhesive buttons and sometimes even improvised solutions made with Sugru, “the world’s first mouldable glue”.

Interesting to note that Sugru, once pooh-poohed by the owner of our now tragically defunct local hardware store, now has its imitators with at least three different pseudo-Sugrus turning up on the shelves of an inner-city Bunnings SuperStore last month.

Sadly, DIYing it may not be the best solution for some camera or lens improvements and that is when I go searching the more obscure corners of the non-dark web for readymade alternatives.

Chinese camera and lens accessories maker JJC has improved its design and manufacturing quality since I first purchased some of their products for my Fujifilm Finepix X100 way back when, so much so that I had no hesitation in almost permanently attaching a JJC LH-JXF23 Lens Hood to the Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R prime lens that is almost always attached to my Fujifilm X-Pro2.

So, my first port of call after returning from a documentary photography shoot last weekend was the JJC website as a result of which I ordered two JJC products for the X-Pro2.

They are the JJC EX-XPRO2G and JJC EX-XPRO2 silicone rubber eyecups and I am waiting for their arrival with bated breath

As an eyeglasses wearer with less than perfect vision, I have problems when shooting outdoors in Australia’s laser beam sunlight as well as indoor locations lit by harsh LED downlights.

The X-Pro2’s minimalist rubber eyecup does little to nothing to help block out either forms of hard, bright light, often making it difficult to see well.

JJC’s description of how to attach and detach the two versions of its silicone rubber eyecups for the X-Pro2 pretty much non-existent, and I wish that manufacturers would bother to hire some brilliant technical writers and technical illustrators such as my BFF who worked in those roles for Canon until the company began closing down its global research and development arm.

How any camera and lens maker can continue to effectively innovate and communicate without an R&D department much less tech writers and technical illustrators is beyond me but there is no accounting for corporate male egos I suppose.

I am looking forward to seeing if JJC’s rubber eyecups will do the trick and will be glad to learn how they are to be attached to my X-Pro2’s eyepiece, if the packages contain actual instructions.

Meanwhile I hope that Fujifilm has come up with a better solution for the X-Pro3’s viewfinder, eyepiece and eyecup.

I note that Fujifilm offers five different options for eyecups on its X-T3, X-T3 and X-H1 cameras so hope that they have the same amount of thought into the one, or ones, for the X-Pro3.

I shall add a postscript to this page when I have received both pairs of JJC eyecups.

JJC EF-XPRO2G silicone rubber eyecup for eyeglasses wearers

JJC EF-XPRO2 silicone rubber eyecup for non-eyeglasses wearers

Fujifilm rubber eyecups for Fujifilm X-T3, X-T2 and X-H1 cameras

Guerrilla alternative and Panasonic Lumix replacement rubber eyecups

Postscript

Rubber eyecups are one of the more vulnerable things on digital camera bodies, in my experience, and I have had several of them drop off in the street or into the crevasses of camera bags in the past despite careful treatment when using and carrying my gear.

When that happens the last thing you want to do is frantically search online for replacements that can cost a fortune and take days if not weeks to arrive when shipped from overseas online retailers.

Accordingly I have replacement OEM and alternative third-party rubber eyecups for all my non-Fujifilm cameras, and the lack of either for my Fujifilm cameras gave me extra motivation for researching and ordering JJC’s two silicone rubber eyecups, the JJC EF-XPRO and the JJC EF-XPRO2G.

The JJC EF-XPRO has just arrived and the JJC EF-XPROG may be here in the next couple of days.

My first conclusion is that both JJC rubber eyecups are replacements and not supplements to the one that comes attached to the X-Pro2.

That is a good thing in that if friction or accident causes the camera’s rubber eyecup to come off, as it apparently has for a number of X-Pro2 owners, then it is possible to use the JJC EF-XPRO or JJC EF-XPRO2G as a do-it-yourself replacement.

The downside is that JJC offers no explanation of that or how to do it in their website and there are no instructions or illustrations on the procedure and the tools and possible adhesives needed on the packet.

Oh dear.

I am not a techie by any means so I may need to find someone who is skilled and equipped to do the replacement for me, if I choose to go ahead with it.

I am guessing that involves detaching the currently well-attached eyecup currently on the camera and then glueing the replacement on in its place.

Examination of the JJC EF-XPRO shows it is almost exactly the same size and shape as the eyecup that goes with the X-Pro2.

As an eyeglasses-wearer, I am more likely to seriously consider replacing the camera’s current rubber eyecup with the JJC EF-XPROG, which is 25.4mm wide compared to the JJC EF-XPRO’s 22.8mm width.

I will consider that possibility further when the JJC EF-XPROG arrives.

One thing makes me nervous, though, and that is how much damage might be done to the camera’s viewfinder eyepiece by removing the current rubber eyecup.

I don’t have the required skills, experience, tools and glues to do it myself, so will have to find someone who does, if I decide to go ahead.

Meanwhile…

I have just one across an optional, that is, not a replacement, rubber eyecup for the Fujifilm X-T3 camera that can also be used on the X-T2, X-t1 and GFX 50S cameras.

The JJC EF-XTLIIG appears to go several steps beyond the five optional Fujifilm rubber eyecups that Fujifilm offers for these cameras, and looks particularly well-suited for shooting video with the X-T3.

Once again, detailed use and attachment information about this product is limited and I will need to do more research, especially in regard to using it with eyeglasses.

The X-T3 is a great camera for high-specced HLG and F-Log video as well as portraiture with vertical battery grip and longer lenses such as the Fujinon XF 56mm f/1.2 R, and I have experienced problems with bright light affecting my vision when using it for those purposes.

I have not tried removing an existing rubber eyecup from an X-T3, but review loaner X-T2 cameras came with loose rubber eyecups or in one case no rubber eyecup at all so they may be easily replaced in a way that the one on the X-Pro2 is not.

Once again there appears to be a lack of clarity in the JJC and third party online retailer pages about the JJC EF-XTLIIG rubber eyecup with images of two different eyecups purporting to be the same product, as seen in the last two images above.

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XTRAS: All about that Hood

http://fujixtras.blogspot.com/2015/08/all-about-that-hood.html

“… There’s a lot of good things to say about the Fujifilm lens hoods though. They do come included with the lenses, and provide more than adequate light shielding and protection for the front lens element. They can be mounted reversed to save space in your bag, and are made of solid mass-colored plastic to resist dents and scratches (the 18 and 35 metal ones are the exception for both last attributes).

But they remain cumbersome, tend to come off or knock loose when banging around in crowds, are a pain to mount/unmount when changing lenses, and look quite a bit, well… boring….

… Fortunately, there are plenty of alternatives available. Some come from traditional third party accessory brands, others spawn out of Chinese workshops courtesy of eBay….”

fujifilm_lh-xf23_lens_hood_for_xf23mmf1.4r_01_1024px_80pc
Fujifilm LH-XF23 Lens Hood for Fujifilm Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R prime lens. Chinese accessories maker JJC and the Vello brand of US company Gradus Group make more affordable alternatives that look and work the same. I bought the one by JJC recently and like it, though I am also looking for a Leica-style circular lens hood with multiple vents that do not obscure the view through my X-Pro2’s optical viewfinder.

Some third-party lens hoods for Fujifilm’s Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R prime lens

Commentary

Recently I bit the bullet and ordered a JJC brand lens hood for the Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R prime lens (equivalent to 35mm in 35mm sensor cameras) as a replacement for the plastic petal lens hood that was supplied with the lens.

I have been going without a lens hood for quite some time now, relying for protection on the excellent Breakthrough Photography 62mm knurled brass traction framed UV filter I keep permanently mounted on that lens.

I find that lens hoods are essential protection when using my cameras in city crowds where people seem to enjoy smashing into each other or hurling out of shop doorways at high speed without bothering to look.

I often wonder if many people now live in virtual worlds in their own minds, where other people are simply background figures to be walked through as if random collections of pixels on a screen.

Fujifilm’s supplied petal lens hood protrudes into my X-Pro2’s optical viewfinder and it can often be annoying to lose sight of that part of the frame, even though I usually have my camera set so that its electronic rangefinder shows a full view of the scene at the lower right of the OVF.

The JJC lens hood, bought from an Australian-based supplier of several Chinese accessories brands including JJC, arrived faster than if I had bought its Fujifilm or Vello equivalents from B&H or ebay and it is working out well, being robust and protective of the front element and filter of my most-used lens.

It has already done its job while photographing an event in some heavily packed rooms where the participants seem to have limited vision or simply did not care who and what they bumped into.

I am looking for an alternative lens hood though, something lighter and smaller and with vents in exactly the right place to allow less obscured vision through the X-Pro2’s OVF, in the same way that Leica’s vented lens hoods work with the company’s M-Series rangefinder lenses.

The article I have linked to here is one of the most researched on the subject of lens hoods for Fujifilm lenses, and through it I have located an eBay supplier in China that makes multiple-vented 62mm screw-in lens hoods.

Shortly after I bought the Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R lens, I came across a European supplier of third-party Fujifilm accessories who claimed that their lightweight  62mm vented screw-in lens hood had vents that did not obscure vision through the OVF.

It did the opposite.

Caveat emptor, I suppose.

With luck and the article by XTRAS, I may have found a lightweight vented lens hood that actually does its job.

We shall see!

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fujinon_xf_23mm_f1.4_r_01_1024px_60pc
Fujinon XF 23mm f/1.4 R prime lens with manual clutch focus, equivalent to 35mm in the 35mm sensor format.

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STC Optical & Chemical: Screw-In Lens Adapter for Olympus 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro Lens

http://shop.stcoptics.com/product/screwinlens/

“This adapter is made by STC with precise CNC machinery, designed for Olympus M.ZUIKO 7-14mm f/2.8 Pro Lens to utilize UV, CPL or ND filters while providing increased protection to the front lens element. The lens adapter includes two parts assembled to fit a 105mm screw-in filter.

It is delicately made by aluminum and sandblasting the adapter surface of interior side to reduce significantly reflection and flare. The tenon design can fully integrate with the tulip lens hood without vignetting. STC ultra slim UV, CPL and ND 105mm filter opens up opportunities for photographers to create more vivid, expressive and evocative images….”

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