Classic-looking shooter with modern features
Don't be fooled by its classic look, Fujifilm X-T2 is cutting-edge and produces high-quality images
By Mike Lee
Fujifilm dubs its new flagship X-T2 the "ultimate mirrorless camera" - a description fitting in many ways.
Enthusiasts and professionals would love its cutting-edge specs such as 14 frames-per-second burst shooting, 325 focusing points, eye-detection autofocus, speedy autofocus tracking and dual UHS-2 SD card slots.
Not only does the X-T2 shoot 4K videos, but it also supports clean HDMI output and log gamma to facilitate production workflow. It is dust- and water-resistant, and can tolerate operating temperatures as low as -10 deg C.
Yet it looks very much like the mechanical cameras of yore. The X-T2 charms with its beautiful design reminiscent of traditional single-lens reflex (SLR) film cameras.
The nostalgic-looking engraved top dials work well for on-the-fly adjustments to ISO, shutter speed and exposure compensation.
The review set included the XF 18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS kit lens which gives a flexible focal range for walkabouts.
Despite the magnesium alloy camera body and the kit lens being robustly constructed, the compact combination weighs under 850g. If equipped with the XF 23mm F2 R WR prime lens, the total weight barely hits 665g.
I can carry the camera and kit lens around all day comfortably. Its unobtrusive size means I don't attract unnecessary attention, unlike the typical prodding DSLR user.
The quality of the images captured with the X-T2 really shines.
Its 24.3 megapixels X-Trans CMOS III APS-C sensor eliminates the low-pass filter to maximise sharpness and detail.
Thin root strands poking out of a pot among my indoor plants were clearly defined in a wide-angle shot.
Noise is so well controlled at high ISO light sensitivity that Fujifilm made ISO 12800 native on the X-T2.
Those who have used Fujifilm's professional film like Velvia, Provia, Pro 400H and Neopan Acros will be reminded of the films' signature feel in the camera's Film Simulation modes.
I instinctively selected Velvia to capture the glorious colours of a sunny scene.
A newbie can just as easily select, say, Acros from the quick menu and produce impressive black-and-white renditions.
The effect is shown real-time on the LCD screen or electronic viewfinder, so there's no guess work before releasing the shutter.
You can easily change your mind and tweak later if you shoot raw files.
I enjoyed the ability to fine-tune exposure, highlight and shadow detail - even with Film Simulation settings during in-camera raw image conversion.
It was easy to create JPEG photos to my liking for quick sharing. A big plus is that X-T2's Wi-Fi function works smoothly with all my phones and tablets.
The X-T2 is the first in the Fujifilm X Series to support 4K video recording. The clarity is still excellent even at 1080p full high definition.
Film Simulation works in video mode, too, potentially saving a lot of time in post-production.
The X-T2 may be quite a leap if you have never used an interchangeable lens camera.
It is a camera that can grow with and on you.
- $2,599 (body), $2,999 (body and XF18-55mm lens kit)
- 24.3 megapixels APS-C X-Trans CMOS III sensor
- 2.36 million dot, 100fps electronic viewfinder with 0.77x magnification
- 3.0-inch, 1,040K-dot, three-directional tilting LCD
- 14fps burst shooting with electronic shutter