Fujifilm has just shown off its new X-T1 mirrorless camera, the first from the company aimed at professional users with SLR-style features and an electronic viewfinder touted to be the fastest around with a lag time of only 0.005 seconds.
Except for that, however, it seems like Fujifilm hasn’t changed the internal hardware much on the X-T1. It has the same 16.3-megapixel Phase Detection Autofocus X-Trans CMOS II sensor, and the same resolution for the viewfinder too. With much similar hardware, the X-T1 can be expected to offer the image quality of the company’s X-E2.
Clearly aiming for the professional shooter, the new X-T1’s fast electronic view finder enables a photographer to track fast-moving subjects, when shooting at sports events or capturing images of wildlife or nature. It is also a great feature to have while doing event photography such as weddings so that more candid moments can be easily captured.
The other welcome addition on the X-T1 is a tough weather-resistant, or weather-sealed body for photography in extreme conditions. Especially important is keeping dirt and moisture out. Add that to a die-cast magnesium body and tempered glass fronting the LCD monitor, and the X-T1 will appeal to professional shooters.
That said, having a weather-sealed body without lenses that have the same protection just wouldn’t do. Fujifilm will be launching three new lenses in the form of the XF18-135mmF3.5-5.6 R OIS WR, XF16-55mmF2.8 R OIS WR and the XF50-140mmF2.8 R OIS WR.
The X-T1 has digital SLR-like controls, with both front and rear wheel dials. However, the familiar Aperture and Shutter controls from the previous X models such as X100s, X-E1/2 are kept.
Of particular interest are the new image advancement modes dial, the exposure mode dial and the ISO dial with an ‘A’ settings to enable Auto ISO without the need to dive into the menu. The X-T1 is definitely a camera aimed at seasoned DSLR users.
It, however, comes at a time when the mirroless market is experiencing a paradigm shift, with the introduction of a full-frame mirrorless body in the form of Sony’s Alpha 7 that costs S$1999 for the body alone. It remains to be seen if the features presented in the X-T1 would be enough to be a contender for a space in the dry box.
There is also talk about another camera – the XPro2 – that may come with a full-frame sensor for the Fujifilm X Mount. That might make it even tougher for the X-T1 to make a significant impression in the minds of would-be buyers.
Local prices aren’t out yet for the X-T1, but it is expected to be sold in the United States at US$1299 (S$1,650) for the body alone and US$1,699 for a kit that includes the body plus an 18-55mm f2.8-4 lens.