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REVIEW: Fujifilm GFX 100

FUJIFILM GFX 100: The first mirrorless camera with more than 100-megapixel resolution and the first medium-format camera with a BSI sensor, sensor-shift stabilisation and 4K/30p video.

As arguably the most advanced medium format camera currently available, the GFX 100 is a most impressive ‘beast’, partly because, despite being large and heavy, it handles a lot like a professional ‘full frame’ mirrorless camera. There’s not much this camera can’t do and that puts it ahead of both its siblings and other manufacturers’ medium format cameras. For professionals looking for the best image quality and the most usable medium format option on the market, the GFX 100 ticks both boxes.
RRP: $16,499
Fujifilm GFX100
The new flagship model in Fujifilm’s medium format stable, the GFX 100, offers the highest effective resolution to date, at 102 megapixels in a tough, weatherproof body with an integrated dual battery compartment/vertical grip, a first for a medium format camera. Dual card slots accept SD cards with the highest specifications supported.

In addition to its ultra-high resolution, the GFX 100 claims a number of significant ‘firsts’. It’s the first mirrorless camera with a BSI (back side illuminated) sensor, the first with sensor-shift stabilisation and the first with and the ability to record 4K/30p video in both DCI 4K and UHD 4K formats as well as 2K video with a 17:9 aspect ratio and regular FHD video at 60/50/30/25/24 fps.

Top view of the GFX with detachable EVF in place.

By default, video is recorded to an SD card at 4K 30P 10-bit 4:2:0 or to external media via HDMI at 4K 30P 10-bit 4:2:2 depth, with simultaneous recording possible. FHD movies can also be saved to the HDMI device in 4:2:2 10-bit format. Users can choose between the newer and more efficient H.265(HEVC) and regular H.264 codecs and select between ALL-Intra and Long GOP compression. F-Log and Hybrid Log-Gamma modes are available via the movie setting menu.

The new Hybrid autofocusing has 3,760,000 phase-detection pixels that cover the entire surface of the sensor. A new AF algorithm plus the X-Processor 4 engine ensures reliable focusing with high speed and accuracy. The new camera can track a moving subject at a speed up to twice that of current models.

Purchasing points:
1. The GFX 100 body measures 156.2 x 163.6 x 102.9mm and weighs 1.4 kilograms with battery and card, which is similar to the specs for a professional DSLR. That’s impressive for a camera with a sensor that is roughly 1.7 times the size of a 35mm format sensor.
2. The crop factor of 0.79x means the ‘standard’ focal length for this camera is 63mm (49.77mm to be precise), while the GFX 32-64mm F/4 R LM WR zoom lens covers angles of view equivalent to approximately 25-50.6mm in 35mm format).
3. Five-axis Body Image Stabilisation (IBIS) makes its first appearance in a Fujifilm medium format camera, providing up to 5.5 stops of shake correction using data collected by a three-axis accelerometer and three-axis gyro sensor and processed with a dedicated dual processor. It works with all lenses.
4. The shutter is mounted with a shock absorption mechanism that suspends the assembly at the top, bottom and on both sides. It can damp down subtle shakes caused when the mechanical shutter is used and enables the shutter to respond more rapidly both for capturing still frames and during burst shooting.
5. The GFX 100 is the first medium format camera with on-sensor phase-detection pixels across the entire sensor. Six AF modes are available to cater for all types of subject movement and users can choose from Single Point, Zone and Wide Tracking focus areas and customise focusing areas and tracking sensitivity. Face and Eye Detection AF are also available with improved capabilities.
6. Continuous shooting is supported with two frame rates: the high-speed rate supporting up to 5 fps and the lower rate at 2 fps. Up to 41 JPEG frames or 13 uncompressed RAF.RAW frames can be held in the buffer memory.
7. Fujifilm’s legacy Film Simulation modes can be used for both stills and movie shooting, either to replicate the look of traditional film emulsions or to add artistic effects to JPEG images and movie clips.

Distributor: Fujifilm Australia; 1800 226 355; www.fujifilm.com.au.
– Margaret Brown

Want to know more? For a more comprehensive review, click here.

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