Truth to be told, Fujifilm X-T2 is a camera that I used the most lately. I love how versatile this camera, and also packed with many features that I feel really suit my shooting style so much that easily rival my Fujifilm X100F’s amazing user experience when use to shoot decisive moments on the street, (Mind you, Fujifilm X100F is a camera that specially design for street photography, read my opinion about X100F here).
Additonal note: Currently I stick with Fujifilm XF35mmf2 lens (almost) all the time. This lens is super fast, accurate focus, compact size, weather resistant, silent, and has relatively cheap price in Fujifilm lens family.
Which one is better, xf35mmf1.4 or xf35mmf2? My opinion is ultimate image quality goes to f1.4 lens, and for ultimate functionality f2 version is the true winner.
So, here are some points that made me love X-T2 so much:
One of the main reason why Fujifilm system keeps me inspired when shooting out there, especially X-T2 (and X-T1) model. We get complete dials to control triangle exposure (Aperture, ISO, Shutter Speed). Although you already might know that most of the time I left my SS and ISO setting in auto (Program mode), but there are times when I need to override my settings by play these dials to get more creative shots.
Low shutter speed with flash is a great “tool” to make movement effect. I like to do this method at relative dark places when I need to shoot moving people but scene is too dark and my shutter speed can not keep up anymore (SS lower than 1/60s). Better to shoot creatively with flash rather than shoot nothing.
Need to do panning shoot in decisive moment? Just override the auto program by move dials, no need to digging menu anymore. It is such an efficient way to change settings because we can do it without looking at camera. Also, with dedicated dial it is possible to change setting while camera is off, always ready to shoot anytime! These three dials are live survivor, make change setting really quick and simple.
Another physical dials: Drive dial (include burst shoot, panorama, video mode, bracketing, etc) and photometry dial (spot, centre weight, multi, average). I do not have to use screen menu at all to play around with them.
Interchangeable lens camera (ILC)
The fact that X-T2 is an interchangeable lens camera also helps me to do few projects other than street like portrait, event, or documentary photography.
Fujifilm X-T2 is still relatively a small camera in my book, which is great because I will not intimidate my subjects on the street.
Even when I pair it with XF56mmf1.2 (which is considered “not small anymore” by Fujifilm’s prime lens user), I still can shoot at traditional market freely without “scare” people or attract too much attention. I think they still look at me like an ordinary tourist without any special mission or project.
Combine with compact xf35mmf2, I still can do “close up” shoot of strangers on the street. Even when they realize my camera pointed at them, they just let me slipped out without ask me any questions.
Things that really hard to beat from X-T2. For my hand size, I have not met yet any other cameras that has better ergonomic level. Hand grip, thumb rest, button and dial positions are so perfect in my hands. Yes, Fujifilm X100F has great button layout as well, but still lack comfort a little bit caused by minimal hand grip.
Not everyone’s problem, but clearly is mine: My height is at 180 cm, not the tallest Indonesian person by any means, but I’m still a bit taller than most of people on the street here. If I want to create eye-level shots, I need to hold my camera in front of my chin or chest. To create more accurate framing tilt screen is a big help. Other cases, when I want to shoot at extreme low or high angle tilt screen is definitely a “must feature”.
Yes, it is true that I shot more with LCD screen than viewfinder. Personally I feel LCD screen is like the “ultimate” optical viewfinder. I know exactly where my camera point at, and at the same time I still fully aware with my surrounding if any subjects will enter my frame. Also when I hunt for attractive subjects, I like to shoot with the way we record video through camcorder. Hold camera on our hands, point it to our surrounding like we record a video and start click shutter to catch attractive moments or subjects. Most people will not even realize that I am in the middle of capturing their image.
As I wrote above, I use LCD more than EVF. However, there are times when I feel EVF has benefit when shooting at bright sunny day, especially when my subjects will not enter my frame from left or right side. Fujifilm X-T2 has big EVF with 0.77 magnification and 100fps (even in low light), which is one of the best EVF I have ever known in today’s camera market.
Fujifilm X-T2 vs Fujifilm X-Pro2 for street photography?
Fujifilm X-Pro2 is the closest sibling of X-T2. Both share same sensor, processor, (almost) same features and marketed as twin flagship of Fujifilm APSC (before X-H1 released). Most different part is X-Pro2 has rangefinder style (X-T2 has SLR style), which is considered by many, that rangefinder supposed to be “better” for street use. Not for me though, here are some reasons:
- Ergonomic: X-Pro2 is slight bigger and heavier than X-T2, but with significantly smaller hand grip. When I combine it with Xf56mm f1.2, it gives me discomfort to use after few minutes. Note: I am person who only use wrist strap and hold camera on my hand for hours.
- ISO dial: X-Pro2 and X100F have same ISO dial design, which is definitely harder to use than dedicated dial on X-T2. Force me have to look to my camera every time I change it.
- Optical viewfinder is great because we have little space outside lens area, so we can see if someone will enter our frame. However, I think LCD feature has (way) better job to do this.
- Lack of tilt screen in X-Pro2
- EVF quality in X-Pro2 noticeably not as good as X-T2 (smaller and slight lower quality). Although, specification wise, X-Pro2 does have better LCD resolution, in real life I can not differentiate them even when shoot side by side.
Last but not the least: Technical Performance
For technical specifications read here at Fujifilm webpage. My personal opinion: Super fast AF (with newer Fujifilm lens), EVF is amazing, display lag 0,005 seconds(!), super fast shooting interval time, TTL flash is easy to use, fast turn on-off time, “Q” shortcut button super helpful to change camera setting, good noise control in high ISO, weather resistant body for dusty places or when rain start to drop, mechanical shutter speed up to 1/8000s great for shoot at big aperture, the best JPEG engine in mirrorless world.
That is all my thought about Fujifilm X-T2. So far I think this is an ILC camera that suit me the most to do my street projects, become a reliable companion when traveling and still compact enough for me to carry everyday.
Keep shooting and stay inspired,