Cameras

Fujifilm X-T30 first look: Is it really built for the outdoors?

GadgetMatch’s youngest producers shared their thoughts!

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Fujifilm invited the two youngest producers from the GadgetMatch team to a secret location to experience the newest mirrorless camera from the light and compact X-series, the Fujifilm X-T30. It was a chance to test and play around with the camera in the great outdoors.

Vincenz, a budding photographer, was eager to test out the capabilities of the X-T30. Meanwhile, MJ, an outdoor enthusiast, got thrilled to see how the camera fares as a companion to one’s travels.

Let’s see what these two producers have to say!

What’s your first impression upon seeing the camera up close?

Vincenz: Seeing it for the first time, you can already tell that it is a Fujifilm camera; their cameras really remind me of the vintage SLRs. The design is what makes the Fujifilm camera lineup “classic” versus other mirrorless bodies, especially if you rock the silver color.

I’m a non-Fujifilm user (and I’m using a DSLR to be specific); I’m surprised there is enough grip for me to hold on despite its compact size. Obviously, there’s so much difference when looking at it than actually holding it. Overall, it’s so handy and a breeze to shoot with.

MJ: What I love about Fujifilm is how their cameras scream style and creativity. Surely, the X-T30 is a good-looking camera reminiscent of vintage cameras.

Aside from being a stunner on any occasion, it matches my small hands. It’s easy to carry and it makes shooting a whole lot simpler for me. This camera is a relief; I don’t have to worry about straining my hands after a day’s worth of photographs and adventures.

How was your experience?

MJ: For someone who enjoys playing outdoors, the X-T30 was fun to use. At first, the controls got me confused. I kept forgetting how to navigate the camera. (The last time I used a Fujifilm camera was almost a year ago.)

If you’re scared of trying out a new camera, don’t worry; the X-T30 is easy to learn with its user-friendly interface. It only takes a few minutes to an hour (depending on your learning curve) to grasp the whole controls. You can start shooting right away.

This camera is a real treat, especially for travelers. It’s so lightweight and compact. You can bring it wherever you go. During our trek, I crossed a river and hopped onto slippery rocks. But I didn’t feel like I was carrying a camera. I was more focused on keeping myself safe rather than being anxious about breaking the camera.

The controls are easily accessible too, which is a plus point for people in search of their next travel camera. When you’re shooting landscapes and sceneries, there are moments that need to be captured quickly or else you’ll miss your only chance.

Vincenz: Using it blew me away. This was my second time using a Fujifilm camera (X-H1 was the first one I used for a sponsored shoot), but I never really got into the system. Fair enough this time, I was able to learn X-T30’s dials and controls quickly.

I was still nitpicking even after learning the basics. Adjusting the ISO was tricky on my part. For some reason, it eventually “locks out.” Maybe there’s just some setting that needs to be adjusted. The touch AF was so handy when I tried capturing moving objects (specifically birds and animals). Plus, the Eye and Face Tracking made the experience a lot better when I shot human element/s in a composition.

I explored more of the camera’s features such as the film simulation modes with Fujifilm’s very own color profiles. It depends on what scene you’re shooting. It’s useful for instant color grading. I also tried the mechanical and silent electronic shutters, the exposure bracketing, the slow shutter speed, and more.

With Fujifilm’s Bluetooth-capable Camera Remote app, you can share your photos on social media in no time. The app is also helpful if you want to control the camera wirelessly. All I can say is, there are more things to discover if you’ll spend time with the camera.

What dismayed me, though, is the lack of optical image stabilization or OIS. Sure, it takes sharper photographs with its fast shutter speed, but it’s not that versatile when shooting video. What’s the use of 4K and having Cinematic F-Log option? I get it, though. Stabilizers and tripods are there. It just would have been better if had a built-in stabilizer, especially for adventurers who love packing light.

Is it really a good companion for your adventures?

Vincenz: I definitely wouldn’t hesitate to answer “yes” since I really enjoyed shooting with it. Generally speaking, people think DSLR cameras are for professionals while mirrorless cameras are for noobs. Well, that’s a biased remark because the quality of the output still depends on how you compose your shots.

What I can brag about this camera is how Fujifilm managed to fit in an amazing camera sensor. Plus, it has all the nifty features in such a compact and lightweight body. It’s a great adventure companion. But, if you’re looking for a vlogging camera instead, this isn’t the one for you.

MJ: Absolutely! While I need more time to actually test the camera on my travels, it’s promising even for the first time. For casual photographers and travelers, it’s a good companion that can capture your adventures in the urban jungle or the great outdoors.

It’s easy to carry. With its compact size, it’s pocketable in cargo shorts and oversized trench coats. It also carries the distinct Fujifilm design which makes it a perfect accessory to match your clothing style. Lastly, despite being small and fashionable, it can do its job in taking postcard-worthy photos and cinematic videos. At least for me, it has what I need.

SEE ALSO: Fujifilm Instax SQ20 hands-on: How good is it?

Cameras

Sony FX30 Cinema Line Camera now for pre-order

An impressive shooter

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Sony FX30

Sony has announced its newest Cinema Line camera, the FX30 (model ILME-FX30). It is now available for pre-order in the Philippines.

The 4K Super 35 compact cinema camera is suitable for aspiring filmmakers and content creators, offering many of the professional features of the Cinema Line.

Prices for both the FX30 and FX30B start at PhP 119,999 with a free Bellroy bag worth PhP 5,000. Interested customers may pre-order here.

Creating a cinematic look

With its BIONZ XR processing engine, the FX30 features the latest imaging systems to help filmmakers in cinematic expression.

It has a 20.1MP APS-C Exmor R CMOS sensor with a dual base ISO (800/2500) for high sensitivity and low noise.

The camera can impressively shoot in high frame rates. It can record 4K Super 35 by oversampling from 6K at up to 60fps. It can also film 4K in 120fps and full HD at 240fps. An HDMI Type-A connector can be used to output 4K, 16-bit RAW to an external recorder.

Like the rest of the Cinema Line, the new camera has Log shooting modes to allow for more flexibility when color grading. The FX30 also has built-in cinematic looks, such as Sony’s S-Cinetone.

When it comes to autofocus, the FX30 has advanced settings such as real-time Eye AF, Tracking, and Assist, providing users more control and a stable angle of view when focusing.

Design-wise, the camera has a compact and lightweight flat-top design with strategic accessory attachment points for easy shooting whether handheld or mounted on a gimbal.

New memory cards released

Meanwhile, Sony has also released two high-performance CFexpress Type A memory cards in the CEA-G320T and CEA-G640T.

These large capacity 320GB and 640GB cards support a maximum writing speed of up to 700MB/s and Video Performance Guarantee “VPG400”, offering sustained writing speeds of up to 400MB/s and enabling 4K 120p video shooting.

Both new memory cards are likewise IP57-rated to be waterproof and dustproof.

 

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Cameras

Fujifilm X-H2 mirrorless digital camera now official

Two lenses also announced

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Fujifilm X-H2

Fujifilm has announced its newest products during the X-Summit NYC event, to be available locally by the end of September 2022:

  • FUJIFILM X-H2 mirrorless digital camera
  • FUJINON Lens XF5gmmF1.2 R WR
  • FUJINON Lens GF20-35mmF4 R WR

FUJIFILM X-H2 camera

The latest addition to the X Series lineup of compact and lightweight cameras features a back-illuminated 40.2MP X-Trans CMOS 5 HR sensor and high-speed X-Processor 5.

It is capable of high-resolution stills with an even faster shutter speed of up to 1/180000 and ISO125 standard sensitivity.

The X-H2 is the first APS-C sensor camera to boast to a high-definition 8K (30p) video in 4:2:2 10-bit, with support for three Apple ProRes codecs.

It is also the first in the X Series to feature the Pixel Shift Multi-Shot function that quadruples image resolution and produces accurate color reproduction.

Among other advanced features are:

  • Smooth Skin Effect
  • Deep Learning technology for boosted Auto White Balance
  • 19 Film Simulation modes
  • Support for HEIF format
  • Optimized algorithm for substantially improved AF accuracy during recording 

Price

  • X-H2 body — PhP 123,990
  • X-H2 16-80mm Kit — PhP 153,990

FUJINON XF5gmmF1.2 R WR lens

The fast mid-telephoto prime lens joins the brand’s lineup of XF lenses. With a focal length of 56mm (85mm in the 35mm film format), the XF56mmF1.2 R WR has a maximum aperture of F1.2 just like its predecessor but with significant improvements in image-resolving performance, as well as close-up capability including beautiful bokeh.

Thanks to its 13 elements in eight groups, the lens is able to minimize chromatic, spherical, and comatic aberrations – including the onion ring effect – to provide better stills than the previous model. When it comes to close ups, the minimum focusing distance has also been improved to 20cm from 50cm.

The lens is the first Fujifilm lens to use 11 diaphragm blades to achieve a near-perfect circle in the aperture, which again is an improvement from the previous iteration.

Aside from these technical aspects, the XF5gmmF1.2 R WR is also built for mobility, as it weighs us 445g and measures 76mm. The lens barrel is dust- and weather-resistant too, and can operate at temperatures as low as -10 degrees Celsius.

Price — PhP 61,990

FUJINON GF20-35mmF4 R WR lens

Lastly, the GF20-35mmF4 R WR joins the GF group designed for the GFX Series mirrorless cameras as the widest in the series, offering a new dynamic for landscape photographers. 

Featuring a 20mm zoom lens (16mm in the 35mm format) with a F4.0 maximum aperture, the lens is tailor-made for covering expansive wide-angle views outdoors, whether in the wild or in the city.

It suppresses distortion and aberration with help of its 14 elements in 10 groups. The dust- and weather- resistant lens likewise utilizes Fujifilm’s unique NANO GI coating to minimize the effects of light reflection.

For its focal length, the GF20-35mmF4 R WR is still kept lightweight as much as possible, measuring 112.5mm with a weight of 725g.

Price — PhP 153,990

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Cameras

Samsung likely close to launching 450-megapixel camera

Say hello to the Hexa2pixel

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Galaxy S22+

Samsung is pioneering a new generation of smartphone photography. Amid the brand’s iconic smartphones, it is also developing new cameras that push the boundaries of what’s possible. For example, a 200-megapixel camera recently launched, opening the door for crisper photos. Now, Samsung is looking towards the future once again. According to a new leak, the next stop is a 450-megapixel shooter.

Such a large sensor shouldn’t be a surprise. In the past, Samsung already promised larger and larger sensors. The company clearly delivered with the new 200-megapixel sensor. Now, a new trademark has teased what’s next for the company’s cameras.

Recently, Samsung trademarked the name “Hexa2pixel.” On its own, the name doesn’t confirm much. However, popular Samsung leaker Ice Universe hinted at what the name means. The leaker’s tweet simply reads, “If X÷6²=12MP, then X=?”

The “62” offers a lot of insight as to what Hexa2pixel means. The new sensor will presumably use a binning method to compress the pixels into a crisper photo. As is standard with Samsung now, output photos are usually 12 megapixels in size. Though 200-megapixel sensors are impressive, it’s not practical to deliver photos of the same size. Users would have full phones almost immediately.

That said, if you solve the algebraic equation, you’ll get 432, the amount of megapixel needed to deliver 12-megapixel photos using the binning method. Samsung will likely round this up further to 450 megapixels, too.

Of course, a trademark is hardly indicative of what’s coming for sure. The company is still reveling in the glory of its 200-megapixel shooter. It will likely take some time before a 450-megapixel shooter makes it to the public.

SEE ALSO: Leaked Samsung teaser reveals two foldables

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