“As more viewers cut cable, what will happen to sports?”

Initial Impressions of the Fuji Firmware Release

The Fuji firmware update is pretty slick, but also relatively limited for the older cameras, which is too bad. Particularly too bad for the X-E2, which is still being sold, and isn’t all that old. In particular, I really wish we had the X-T1’s “direct selection AF area using the four-way controller”. I’ve never understood why this didn’t work this way before, and now it’s an option, but only on the X-T1. Also, I’d like to have tethered shooting support, especially now that I’ve got such a nice portrait lens in the 56mm. Jealous.

Still, the new AF+MF is nice, particularly with the 23mm, which used to have to use the clutch mechanism to switch from AF to MF. Now, you just leave it in MF and it will autofocus when the button is half-pressed, but still allow for manual trimming. I usually prefer to set the AF-L button to be autofocus, but that didn’t work with the 23mm’s clutch. My initial impression is that this new method works pretty well. This is certainly a nice benefit to the “fly by wire” focusing mechanism; the clutch isn’t actually a clutch, but a fancy switch that can be controlled by firmware.

Thoughts on Fuji Lenses

Zack Arias has a lengthy blog post about Fuji lenses, which you should check out if you’re interested in the Fuji X system. In my opinion, the lenses are the reason to get into this system, as they’re so obviously targeted at photographers who like the more traditional feel of metal-bodied lenses with aperture rings, not to mention a solid selection of fast primes. Don’t get me wrong: I’m happy with my X-E2 body, but I think other systems are progressing faster and farther with their camera bodies (Sony, for instance). Still, the lenses are the more critical part of the kit, and I’m confident that Fuji is capable of progressing satisfactorily with their cameras.

I currently own the 23mm f/1.4, the 35mm f/1.4, and now my recently acquired 56mm f/1.2. None of these lenses disappoint, and they’ve fueled my desire to sell the Nikon gear and double down. I don’t actually have much else I’d buy, to be honest. The Fuji lens roadmap (how cool is it that they have a roadmap?) has two new lenses of interest: the 16mm f/1.4 and the 90mm f/2. I’d like a wide-angle lens, and it would come down to the 16mm or the already released 10-24mm f/4 OIS. I briefly had the 14mm f/2.8, but didn’t feel it was up to the level set by other Fuji lenses I’ve used and f/2.8 felt slow for a prime of its size. The 10-24 would be great to pack on mountain bike trips, so it may be the winner, especially since it has image stabilization. Still, the f/1.4 on the 16mm is enchanting, and would be useful in low light settings as can be encountered at some biking destinations. Decisions, decisions.

There’s not much to say against the idea of the 90mm; it just sounds lovely. I’ve used my Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8 as my main lens for portraits up to now, but I don’t plan on replacing it with the recently-released Fuji equivalent; I’d rather have the 56mm and 90mm tandem, since I’m not really shooting action.

It’s a great time to be in the market–there are so many good things being released. I’m definitely looking forward to the next high-end X camera, which I’m sure to get.

Golden Gate

Golden Gate

I’ve been cleaning up and consolidating photos on some hard drives, and came across these photos taken on a ride earlier this year. Didn’t do much else other than apply a Velvia 50 film look and merge them to a pano. That was a good day, and seeing the pic made this cloudy/rainy day just a little better.