Monday, July 22, 2013

Fujifilm Professional FIlm Review

Fujifilm advertisement from 2000
There sure has been a lot of chatter about film this week so let's take a look at where we are now with Fujifilm film products.
I found an old product map listing the films on sale in approx 2000.  Many of those products have slipped away into a distant memory and the core products are still here.  What defines a core product?  I just made that up but here's what I think the core film products are (and they happen to be the current products):

Fujichrome Provia 100F - made in all formats - and a wonderful all around slide film.  Critical now for some since no other slide films are mass produced in the world except by Fujifilm.  35, 120, 4x5, 8x10.

Fujichrome Velvia 50 - made in 35mm and 120mm.  If you don't know about this product yet - then where you been for the past 20yrs?  Get out and shoot more.  Amazing sharpness and incredible saturation.  Velvia 100 is also current in formats 35, 120, 4x5, 8x10.
Fujicolor Pro400H - sold in 35mm and 120mm.  This classic ISO400 speed color negative film is a standard for many photographers from the plastic camera group to the medium format fashion and wedding folks.

Neopan Acros - an extremely fine grain black and white film.  Made in 35, 120 and 4x5 this B&W film is loved by those who use it and many still have yet to discover it.

Older Spec Sheet with Full Family

It is true that Provia 400X and Neopan 400 are being phased out now.  The shock of that to some is understandable - but the reality is the sales are very low worldwide and the film will most likely be in stock for the remainder of 2013 and possibly for up to a year - depending on how much of a run there is on the stock at the dealers.  If anyone needs a couple hundred rolls - by all means click add to cart at your favorite pro photo store and they can fulfill that order.
The first of the core films to go away was the Press line of films.  The CZ800 owned the decade of the 90's with incredible performance.  Alas digital capture came first to the news world and as organizations saw the obvious speed and cost gains - they dumped film and move to digital and slowly Press films were phased out.
 Fujicolor Pro800Z was actually a bit of a surprise to me when it was discontinued.  I thought it should have stayed around another few years but the change was made and ISO400 has to fill the void.
 Here are a selection of the recently departed Astia 100F and Neopan 400 films.  Others are current.
Last but not least the wildly popular but long discontinued film FP100C 4x5 has found its way back to the USA shores.  This amazing film is being sold now in a very limited release of product found in the warehouse tucked away and ready for sale.  It is extremely odd for a film which was discontinued and sold out to reappear after a year or so of being forgotten.  It will be interesting to see how the sales go.  The film IS IN STOCK now at a few dealers: Adorama, B&H Photo, Foto Care, Unique Photo.  The medium format FP100C and FP3000B are current products easily found at a local dealer.

Why not look back at the massive and awesome GX680III!?  Fujifilm still sells the neat GF670 folder.  This classic medium format rangefinder is a great camera which shoots either 6x6 or 6x7 format.  The GF670 can be picked up for around $1800 new.  Not cheap - but probably the last folding 6x7 professional camera the world will see.
** Update - August 25, 2014 - The wonderful GF670 camera is now discontinued effective immediately.  The camera really held a wonderful spot in the medium format market.  A unique camera with roots in the old days of bellows rangefinder cameras.

I am an employee of FUJIFILM North America Corporation.
The statements, comments and opinions expressed here represent my own, personal views and are not endorsed by, or affiliated in any way with, FUJIFILM North America Corporation or its affiliates. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

New Fujifilm X-Series Firmware Update July 23rd !

We have an exciting new firmware release coming on July 23rd.
This update has been widely anticipated for the addition of faster AF as well as Focus Peaking on the X-Pro1 and X-E1.

Please make sure your cameras are updated later this month. There are a LOT of details below.  We also have to update the lenses.
X-Pro1 - moving up to 3.0
X-E1 - moving up to 2.0

ALL Lenses moving up to 3.0

Key contents of the firmware update for X-Pro1 and X-E1 cameras

1. Improved AF speed on most existing XF lenses.

Thanks to an updated algorithm, faster AF speed is achieved with the following XF lenses:

XF14mmF2.8 R
XF18mmF2 R
XF35mmF1.4 R
XF60mmF2.4 R Macro
XF18-55mmF2.8–4 R LM OIS

2. Addition of a “Focus Peak Highlight” function for manual focusing.

A “Focus Peak Highlight” function, as featured on the FUJIFILM X100S and X20 cameras, has been added to the X-Pro1 and X-E1 via this firmware update. It assists accurate and sensitive manual focusing by enhancing the outline of your subject in high contrast.

3. Improvement of the method to change magnification during manual focus.

Just press the dial to activate image magnification during manual focus and then rotate the dial right or left and the camera will alternate between 3x and 10x, whichever direction you turn.

4. Improvement of focus precision in various scenes [additional item]
The focus detection algorithm has been improved to provide more accurate focus precision for low contrast subjects and scenes containing horizontal stripes.

5. XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS lens: Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) is improved when recording videos.

The OIS has been improved to reduce image blurring when walking and recording video footage.

Firmware version

To enjoy these improvements, please upgrade the firmware on your X-Pro1 to version 3.00 or newer and the firmware on your X-E1 to version to 2.00 or newer:
FUJIFILM X-Pro1: Ver. 3.00
FUJIFILM X-E1: Ver. 2.00
It is also necessary to download new version 3.00 lens firmware and update this for each of your lenses to fully benefit from these enhancements
All XF Lenses (different firmware for each lens): Ver. 3.00
To download the new firmware, please visit the support section of our global website:

Fujifilm global website:

> XF14mmF2.8 R

> XF18mmF2 R

> XF35mmF1.4 R

> XF60mmF2.4 R Macro

> XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS

> F900EXR

> S8400W

> XP200

I am an employee of FUJIFILM North America Corporation.
The statements, comments and opinions expressed here represent my own, personal views and are not endorsed by, or affiliated in any way with, FUJIFILM North America Corporation or its affiliates. 

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Fujifilm X-M1 Camera Overview

Fujifilm X-M1 with the Leica 50 F/.95

Shooting over the past week with the new X-M1 has been very enjoyable.  I really appreciate the tilt LCD as well as the compact size of the camera.  Having the confidence in the 16MP X-Trans APS sensor makes shooting a new camera much easier since the sensor has already proven itself in the market with the X-Pro1 and X-E1.  So all I have to do is get used to some new handling features and set-up.
From the instant you spot your shot and switch ON your FUJIFILM X-M1, its high-speed performance will ensure the magic of the moment does not escape your lens.

Capture subjects with 5.6 fps (max. 30 frames**) high speed continuous shooting

The X-M1 has several new features described in earlier posts and all over the web.  For a full list see the product page on the Fujifilm site:
I've been using the camera with all of the XF & XC lenses.  Of course I know it is frustrating that the blogger process removes the metadata - that isn't my intention.  I need to do a little bit harder edit out of the 1000+ images so far - perhaps more is better in this scenario.
The X-M1 will be available in late July for US $699 body only and $799 with the XC16-50.

Here are the other page links for the XF27mm lens and camera launch 

The next 17 or so images are the X-M1 with the XC16-50.

Versatile Shooting Modes & Mode Dials

In addition to a wide range of shooting modes, the FUJIFILM X-M1 offers a selection of versatile scene positions that ensure optimum results no matter what the scene.

Advanced SR AUTO
Advanced SR AUTO automatically optimizes shutter speed, aperture and other settings. It instantly recognizes 58 scene types and then selects the most appropriate settings. All you do is frame, press the shutter and enjoy pro-class photo quality.
  • * 54 scene types with non-OIS lens attached
The easiest mode for taking pictures. Use this for ordinary photography.
Advanced Mode
  • Advanced Filter
  • Multiple Exposure

Scene Position
Ensures the ideal camera settings to match the shooting scenes. Frequently used Sports, Landscape, and Portrait modes can be switfly selected with the Mode Dial.
Program AE
Automatic mode to specify the settings except for the shutter speed and aperture setting.
This mode is a shooting mode with user settings.

Shutter Priority AE
An automatic mode to set the shutter speed.
Aperture Priority AE
An automatic mode to set the aperture.
This mode provides more detailed settings that are impossible to set in Auto mode.

Set for shooting portraits. Skin tones are softened as it enhances the overall natural look.
A quick recognition of persons in motion or objects for a faster shutter speed to help you catch the perfect moment.

Best for shooting scenery in daylight capturing clear and sharp shots of buildings and mountains effectively.

In-camera filtration using the Advanced features - Miniature
In-camera filtration using the Dynamic Pop feature.

ISO 800 1/20th with fill flash

Images below - until mentioned otherwise are with the Leica 50mm.  This lens is very exciting to use and was challenging to focus wide open - but every good challenge has a learning effect.  Having the focus peaking capability was essential.  Without focus peaking I'd almost proclaim the lens is not useful with moving subjects at all wide open.  The peaking highlights really made it possible to grab a few shots along my walk.  I chose NOT to stop down so shot most at F/1.0 give or take a few 1/3's.
And for the really tech savvy - I was using a 3 stop ND filter. 

With FUJIFILM X-M1's lens interchangeability, you can capture Full HD movies (1920 x 1080) and take advantage of the unique optical character of a wide selection of high-quality lenses. The combination of the large sensor and bright XF and XC lenses also lets you capture movies with a large, beautiful "bokeh" background. For more impact, you can add MONOCHROME or one of FUJIFILM's original Film Simulation modes and create impressive movies.
Even when shooting moving subjects, Auto Focus keeps the action in sharp focus. And if you are shooting scenes while walking, image stabilization can minimize blur***.

Make Cinema Magic with FULL HD Movie x Film Simulation

True-to-life natural tonality and color reproduction.
Shoot Full HD Movies in the vibrant colors of Velvia.
Capture the action in richly expressive monochrome tones.

Fujifilm X-M1 with the Fujifilm lenses.

Some of the new features on the X-M1 include the ability to control the flash by up to + - 2 stops which is a big improvement over the prior controls of = - 2/3's
The X-M1 has face detection for easy grabbing of focus of people's faces.  This of course works in capture and playback.
The X-M1 has Focus Peaking
Wifi is included in the body as well for location services and image transfer to mobile device (some limitations depending on the smartphone platform).

Fujifilm has great color!!  This is something I always appreciate in my post work.


FUJINON XF high quality compact prime lens.
Clear, high fidelity descriptive performance in a compact, lightweight form make this lens a perfect partner for FUJIFILM X-M1. With a focal length of 41mm*, about the same angle of view of the human eye, this lens is not only a superb snapshot choice, but also performs well in a variety of scenes from portraits and landscapes to architectural shots. High-speed, high-precision AF is driven by a built-in high-torque DC coreless motor to capture fleeting moments in sharp focus.

XC16-50mmF3.5-5.6 OIS

From the wide angle 24mm* to a standard mid-range telephoto up to 76mm*, this compact zoom lens empowers you with a wide range of focal lengths. While it is ideal for landscapes and travel photography, its versatile performance makes it a great choice for shooting special occasions indoors and outdoors. Superb optical performance is assured by the all-glass 10 group / 12 element lens configuration includes 3 aspherical lenses and 1 ED lens. The reduced weight of the focusing lens combined with a high-precision stepping motor ensure high-speed autofocusing. So those once-in-a-lifetime shots won't escape your camera. Also optical image stabilization effectively minimizes blur when shooting dark scenes or zooming in on the action. When shooting movies, the lens keeps moving subjects in crisp focus, while image stablization keeps blur to a minimum even when shooting scenes while walking.

From the hip shooting is much easier with the tilt LCD

In camera multi exposure mode.

Step out with DSLR-style agility

Compact and lighter than a typical DSLR, but delivering uncompromising resolution rivaling its bulky cousins. The classic lines of the small body invite you to take it with you wherever you go. The impact of what the FUJIFILM X-M1 offers will motivate you to get out there and seize every moment.

Simple "One Handed" Operation

All dials and buttons are arranged on the right of the LCD for easy and direct control at your fingertips.

These are shot at ISO 2000.

I am an employee of FUJIFILM North America Corporation.
The statements, comments and opinions expressed here represent my own, personal views and are not endorsed by, or affiliated in any way with, FUJIFILM North America Corporation or its affiliates. 

A Quick Look at the 1972 Hasselblad 500C/M

Just a few snaps of the awesome and durable 500C/M.