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Fuji X-H1 – Your Opinion

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I'm looking at the X-H1 in a completely different light than anyone else, I think; I'm mating the body with small, lightweight, manual focus lenses and so far I think it's working. Yes, the camera has some heft but it feels right for the purpose the camera was designed for, as do all the Fuji X cams; they've found a great balance of sturdiness while still being a hell of a lot less weighty than a DSLR. It's quite a magic trick and my hat's off to the Fuji designers.

 

I love my X-Pro 2 as well. Leica who?

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Honestly, could care less.  Street shooter here. Video?  What's that?  X-Pro2 has been my flagship, and will be until the XP3.

Interesting that you cared so little that you felt compelled to tell us how much you don’t care. The lady doth protest too much, me thinks.

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A NYC street shooter my whole life now using X-Pro2 and the X-H1.

My first thought after I put the grip on was "Finally, a defensive weapon." The thing has some heft 
as does the X-Pro2 and I like that.
Actually, in close to 40 years of riding the subway and roaming the streets, I have never felt that either myself or my gear was in jeopardy.
It is a thought which occurs, however.
.
I like the video capabilities because often I find myself involved with a subject who has an interesting story or is a real character. 
It is not my primary focus but I like to play around. And it looks wonderful. Really quite nice. 

Having had most every FUJI camera since the X100, I think that the X-H1 is a refinement PLUS. Every 2 years I replace 1 body.
I always say "It's a tool, not a jewel." but I am finding the X-H1 to be a little jewel-like... or maybe because it's new, I don't know..
it hasn't disappointed me yet.

 


 

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Fuji by adopting Image Stabilization will be making new friends with X-H1. However for me not so important for daylight photography. More demands on the lithium battery? Curious to know how many people use the small fill-in flash sold with the XT-2? The only thing I like about Fuji X-H1 the top readout display copying Leica SL design. Unfortunately that feature moves the exposure compensation dial. Until I actually handle the X-H1 will reserve judgement but at this stage I prefer to stay with XT-2 which is about the right size and weight for me.  

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So, engineering requirements aside, what's the X-H1 like to use in the real world?  Well, personally, I find it to be much like an X-T2, which is truly an excellent camera, but functionally better in every way. 

 
Some data regarding the size: The X-H1 is WHOPPING 5% larger than the X-T2 in 2 of 3 dimensions, and 10% thicker at its minimum depth dimension, the extra thickness necessary to incorporate the IBIS subsystem. Here is a top view photo showing my Graphite Silver next to my X-H1.
 
X-H1%20vs%20X-T2%20comparo.jpg
 
So, while the size difference is "statistically significant", do I find it to be practically significant? No, with the exception that the grip is MUCH better than the X-T2's.
 
Regarding weight: The X-T2 with a RRS L-plate mounted is actually 17 grams heavier (I did the data analysis) than X-H1. Do I ever think about how heavy the X-T2 is when I am using it in the real world with its L-plate mounted? Nope, and likewise do I think about the weight X-H1 when I am using it in the real world? No. 
 
The leaf-spring shutter button and 5-spring suspended shutter mech is an absolute joy, the smoothest, silkiest, quietest, best damped focal plane shutter I have ever used, hands down, bar none, from any manufacterer. There is absolutely no "breakover" in actuating the shutter, and it is designed so that no vibration or shock is transferred to the body to interfere with the IBIS system. Incredible and really, really nice. REALLY nice. 
 
The 3.7 million dot EVF is amazing, fast, clear, and gorgeous to look at  but more importantly, the camera has exceptionally accurate matrix metering, on par with the GFX, which is exemplary. See the photo of Putah Creek Pond below to see how accurately the X-H1 meters to render both shadow detail and capture the highlights in the sky without blowing out. This metering accuracy makes it a snap to edit images by just needing to set black/white points. That's it. By contrast, I found my first X-T2 in matrix metering mode seemed to consistently read the scene as darker than it actually was, thereby overexposing by 1/3 or 1/2 a stop. The X-H1 metering system seems to be much more accurate, and the higher resolution and clearer EVR makes it easier to gauge the exposure preview of the scene. 
 
40663806314_1bbf738945_o.jpg
 
A lot of folks in the internet "specs geeks" forums have been griping about the removal of the exp comp dial for the submonitor, but in actual use, this has not been a problem for me in any way whatsoever. I have my rear command dial to be able to actuate the exposure comp functionality by a simple press, and then a turn of the dial sets comp quickly and effectively. And the EVF now displays a full ± 5 stops of compensation. And, I don't find that I am inadvertantly bumping the exp comp dial as I often find happens on my X-T2 when I am running around from place to place shooting at the race track. 
 
And, having the submonitor has proven to be much more useful than I originally anticipated. It's really nice to be able to glance down at it with lenses like the 18-55 or 10-24 to see what aperture the lens is set at, as well as a panoply of other useful information. When the camera is switched off, its great to be able to see how many frames are left on the card, the available battery capacity, and the exp. comp setting. Bottom line: the more I use the camera, the more I like it. 
 
The rear touch screen is nice also, and I really like being able to swipe to bring up the auto timer, the RGB histograms, or the roll/pitch gauge on the LCD. The fact that you can configure it to be only active on a specified part of the screen, as well as the increased eye relief of the new EVF, this lets you look through the viewfinder without getting grease from your nose on the LCD, as well as letting you use the LCD touch functions. The next post will show some real world use photographs, including high-speed continuous autofocus. 

 

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