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Featured Product: Fujifilm X-T2
Click Pro: Michelle Turner Photography
I was so excited when Fujifilm announced the X-T2. After all, it was the Fujifilm X-T1 that made me fall in love with mirrorless cameras, so I was interested to see how the company had integrated the new technology and features from the release of the X-Pro2 earlier this year into the T series. So I was thrilled to get my hands on the X-T2 this month to test it out!
I am a wedding and commercial photographer, so it’s essential I have gear I don’t have to think too much about… I just need it to work — and work well — in a variety of lighting conditions with fast-moving subjects. I don’t want to have to fiddle or fight with a camera; instead, I need it to truly become an extension of my hand.
I’m going to start here since this is what I’ve always found most appealing about mirrorless cameras. I’m a destination photographer; I travel to almost all of my shoots (usually by plane), so it’s important to me to have a kit that is smaller and lighter. For me, the size of the X-T2 is just perfect. After a ten-hour day of shooting I also appreciate a camera that is lighter as well; back, neck and shoulder strain just isn’t a problem when you’re working with a smaller, lighter camera, and the X-T2 didn’t disappoint… it fit so easily in my hands and I easily could grip it one hand (which is important since I often shoot from the hip or from above my head). The smaller size of the X-T2 means that it is also unobtrusive, a quality I am keen to have when I am photographing documentary work or when I’m working in an urban environment. It was a joy to shoot with this camera – it simply felt right in my hands.
Dual card slots
For me, this was one of the most important upgrades from the Fujifilm X-T1. I like to shoot backup with the dual card slots in my camera — this provides me with in-camera redundancy on a shoot. Sure, I believe that the likelihood of total card loss is slim, but it has happened to me twice during my professional career so I prefer to minimize the risk by shooting RAW to one slot and JPEG to the other. I’m so happy to see that Fujifilm fitted the X-T2 with dual card slots. When I unboxed the camera I was able to choose backup or overflow from the camera menu, and once I set my preference everything worked just as it should. The camera wrote the RAW files to slot one and the JPEG files to slot two. While I hope that I never have to rely on the JPEG versions of the file (I prefer working with RAW files), I can relax knowing that I have those JPEG files and that they are lovely; that’s what I’ve come to expect from my Fujifilm JPEG files, and the X-T2 lives up to that.
The electronic viewfinder
This is one of my favorite features of the X-T2. If you’ve never shot with an electronic viewfinder, try it out. It takes a bit of time to get used to, but you may find (as I did) that you are sold. The electronic viewfinder in the X-T2 is beautiful, and I can tell you that using this feature really cut down on my post processing work because when I take the photograph I can see EXACTLY how the image will look before I press the shutter. Are you working with extreme back light and you want to incorporate some flare without blowing the image? No worries! The X-T2’s electronic viewfinder will let you see exactly how the flare will look in the image. Was there a subtle shift in the light? You’ll pick up on it immediately so that you can make the necessary changes to your exposure or white balance. This means that my files in many cases are exactly what I want straight out of camera — this has revolutionized my workflow! The electronic viewfinder in the Fujifilm X-T2 is lovely and accurate.
I was most interested to see how the X-T2 would stack up in the focusing department. I photograph a lot of fast-moving subjects and events, so it is important for me to be able to rely on my camera to capture the moment. The X-T2 is fast! Even while chasing a fast-moving two year old I was able to keep her in focus. I also shot a series of fun relay races for a commercial client with the X-T2, and I found that I was able to focus accurately even when the motion was moving toward or away from the camera — the X-T2 is simply that good.
This camera feels wonderful in my hands, but at the end of the day it’s the image quality that I’ll examine most closely. I’ve come to expect beautiful files from Fujifilm, and that’s exactly what the X-T2 gave me. The colors are jaw-droppingly gorgeous straight out of camera (even the JPEG files). If you want to replicate the look of some of the Fujifilm film stocks, you can do that right in camera or in your RAW converter (I use Lightroom; you can adjust the look of the file in the Develop module under Camera Calibration > Profile.) While Provia is my favorite, I also loved playing with some of the other profiles while I was testing the X-T2.
Final thoughts. I’m in love with this camera, and I just didn’t want to give it back. With the release of both the X-T2 and the X-Pro2 this year, Fujifilm has hit a home run!
All images by Michelle Turner
This is a sponsored post.