FUJIFILM X-H2S OVERVIEW
Under the promise of never missing a "decisive moment", Fujifilm unveiled a state-of-the-art, 5th generation X-Trans CMOS 5 HS sensor with an X-Processor 5. All are built in a beautifully designed body from which visual content creators, photographers and filmmakers alike, will benefit from this true hybrid camera. Let's see what makes this camera so fast, powerful and light without further ado!
5th Generation Sensor and Processor
With an impressive resolution of 26.1MP, the sensor inside Fujifilm's X-H2S works with a unique color filter array to keep moiré and false color under control. And the best part, without the need for unpopular optical low-pass filters. Performance on the X-H2S has improved notoriously and is capable of delivering the insane amount of 40 frames per second in a blackout-free burst shooting. Also, the whole system focuses significantly better during such demanding shooting conditions.
The stacked layered structure of the chip array on this 5th generation X-Trans CMOS sensor enables light to be processed and read more efficiently. Precisely, 4 times faster than the previous 4th generation model (which means x30 faster than the very first generation X-Trans CMOS sensor from 10 years ago). Placing the microelectronic components processing and reading out signals on the sensor's back surface allows such performance, and by taking advantage of that speedy reading, the camera is capable of processing focusing signals while working out the image for display. This state of the art brand-new stacked-layer CMOS sensor is superior in both mobility and speed.
According to the Fuji folks, moiré gets entirely controlled by a low-periodic color filter array which emulates photosensitive silver particles (like those used in analog films for efficient color interpolation) in a highly random arrangement from surrounding pixels to reduce this artifact to a virtually non-existent status. The result? High-resolution images without optical low-pass filters!
Extremely High-speed Burst Shooting
One of the most notable features of the X-Trans CMOS 5 HS sensor is the capability of shooting blackout-free bursts which can reach up to 40 frames per second. During this mode, the X-H2S sensor's phase-detection pixels are independently controlled by the visual display.
At first, that doesn't seem like much, but this allows the camera to triple the number of possible calculations, enabling the ability to focus at extremely high speeds between single frames with both accuracy and precision. And if we need long bursts of over 1000 images, it can be done at 30 frames per second in JPEG and 20 frames per second in RAW. And if you like HEIF format, you can also select it for 10-bit image quality in files up to 30% smaller than JPEG files, which expands Fuji's reputation of giving us high-quality images straight out of the camera.
With those speeds, one would instantly think that autofocus would suffer from such insane bursts. But that's not the case with the X-H2S which comes with pretty much-improved autofocus for better subject tracking in almost any lighting condition. Alongside X-Trans CMOS 5 HS and X-Processor 5, a state-of-the-art autofocus prediction algorithm gives a major boost to subject tracking and autofocus accuracy on moving objects, most notably in Zone AF and low-contrast conditions.
Based on Deep Learning technology, the X-Processor 5 features a subject-detection autofocus electronic mechanism instantly detects and tracks a broader range of subjects which, beyond human faces and eyes, also include:
Unless messing up our manual exposures, we photographers and videographers alike, now can both confidently and creatively concentrate on our compositions knowing that all will be precisely focused and sharp. Oh, and if you like shooting in color, then this will ring a bell to you. Fuji has been developing one of the most impressive color profiles available in camera systems. And this magnificent beast isn't an exception to the rule.
On Image Stabilization
Loved by some and hated by some others, in-body image stabilization is here to stay. Fuji's new X-H2S camera gives us up to 7 stops of IBIS. Now that's insane! Please let us elaborate on why. Imagine you find yourselves shooting with a heavy 200mm lens attached to your camera. As expected, such a set-up would at least require a monopod when shooting below 1/200 of a second. Thanks to this feature, we can shoot in handheld mode with half a second shutter speeds… That's shooting a massive lens at 1/2 in handheld mode with the confidence that images won't be shaky due to the inevitable jitters of our hands under such conditions.
This powerful feature empowers us to handhold in conditions that previously would have required support, such as sports or low light. And all this is possible thanks to an all-new 5-axis in-body image stabilization system, made possible by X-Processor 5 and a sensing control function. All these goodies combined are the ones behind up to seven stops of compensation.
That Electronic Viewfinder
Long gone are the days in which electronic viewfinders were the main "but" when considering a mirrorless camera system. Nowadays, EVFs have evolved into achieving a seamlessly natural feeling when looking through the lens. And the X-H2S is no exception to this rule. With a 5.76 million dot high-resolution electronic viewfinder, you can be sure that what you are looking through the lens is pretty close to the observable reality with your bare eyes.
Also, this insane high-resolution electronic viewfinder comes with a 0.8x factor magnification and uses all those millions of dots for incredible detail. A refresh rate of approximately 120 frames per second suppresses the typical image blurring and distortion caused by looking through the finder at odd or extreme angles, making it comfortable to track moving subjects more accurately.
Handling the camera promises to be a delightful experience for many creators alike. So let's explore some of the various features built-in to this nice camera.
We have to admit that for the Fuji fashion this camera is a bit bulky, but we also have to consider the many professional applications it is intended for. The first is weather sealing. With 79 weather-sealed points offering secure levels of dust and moisture resistance, the X-H2S is built to withstand the brutal rigors of pro use, which includes normally operating in temperatures as low as
-10°C (14°F). This is a true weather-resistant hybrid camera for securely using in all weather conditions without skipping a beat. Also interesting, the shutter durability has been improved to withstand 500,000 actuations in the internal testing.
Beyond that secure point, the X-2HS also has some advanced operations and controls:
- The updated handgrip of the X-H2S surpasses the previously beloved handgrip from the X-H1 to provide more secure Something we all know comes in handy when using longer or large-aperture lenses.
- "Feather-touch shutter release" as they call it, the shutter button feels has been adjusted to make it more intuitive when pressed halfway through, helping us users to precisely release the shutter at the decisive moment.
- It supports CFexpress™ Type B card, which is highly appreciated. The camera comes with one CFexpress™ Type B memory card slot and one UHS-II SD memory card Something logical taking into account the X-H2S's incredibly fast burst mode and its professional video performance.
- And speaking of video, some enhanced video functions. Video operation has been made easier, thanks to the stand-alone video-recording button and 1.62 million dots vari-angle LCD monitor, which can be fully rotated even when HDMI and microphone cables are plugged in. Oh, and that HDMI port isn't mini, a regular HDMI Type-A port is the one provided in this camera, making it a first-time for the X series cameras!
- Last but not least, this brand new camera can be directly connected to a PC for webcam and live streaming in 4K without needing the FUJIFILM X Webcam It can also be combined with the optional File Transmitter FT-XH to support FTP transfer and tethering capabilities through wired and wireless internet connections, or USB-connected smartphones.
- Oh, and the USB-C port conveniently allows us to charge the whole battery setup no matter the place.
- Additionally, we can also get the FAN-001 cooling fan, specifically designed for this camera to extend shooting and recording at high-temperature settings.
What about Video?
Oh, we haven't forgotten about the video, of course not! Fujifilm announced 6.2K 30P for this camera and we want to know everything about it now. With Open Gate and the aforementioned
26.1MP Stacked BSI CMOS sensor, 6.2K movies can be recorded at 30P in 4:2:2 10-bit color. Also, this particular sensor is tuned for readout speeds of up to 1/180 sec, meaning rolling shutter effects get minimized, which results in more natural-looking motion when shooting our precious footage.
The X-H2S from Fujifilm also supports 4K/120P high-speed video so fast-moving subjects can be recorded in incredible detail for high-quality, slow-motion footage. And for long shootings (up to 240 minutes of continuous shooting to be precise), it comes with a new heat-dissipating structure which copes perfectly with the cooling fan mentioned above.
Some other stats for the geeks:
- Apple ProRes support: The X-H2S camera supports Apple ProRes 422 HQ, ProRes 422, and ProRes 422 LT. ProRes 422 Proxy is also available when recording ProRes which assists in streamlining workflows in post.
- Enhanced autofocus for video: This camera supports the Autofocus + Manual Focus functions when recording movies while still offering subject-detection autofocus in video recording for accurate tracking of fast-moving subjects.
- New F-Log2: Additionally to F-Log, the X-H2S also supports F-Log2, which records an expanded dynamic range of up to 14 stops; a wider range when compared to current F-Log, broadening post-production potentials and more.
Here, we highlight the most impressive specs from this camera, but you can take a spin over at Fuji's official page to see more by yourselves.
- 10-bit HEIF output, great for true HDR
- 26MP APS-C Stacked CMOS sensor with X-Trans color filter pattern
- 76M dot OLED viewfinder with 0.8x magnification and up to 120fps refresh
- 2K 'open-gate' video from sensor's full 3:2 region
- CFexpress Type B and UHS-II SD slots
- Choice of codecs including ProRes HQ, Std and LT options
- Optional grips, the VG-XH battery grip and FT-XH file transmitter
- Continuous shooting at up to 40fps with no blackout
- DCI or UHD 4K video from full width, up to 60p
- F-Log 2 from 14-bit readout which allows additional dynamic range
- Image stabilization rated at up to 7EV
- Improved AF tracking and subject recognition AF
- Optional cooling fan for longer video capture times
- Slow-mo DCI or UHD 4K from up to 120fps cropped-capture
Who is This Camera For?
At $2,499.99 just for the body, we should consider this to be a professional camera. But beyond that, this piece of equipment is specifically designed for those whose business depends on maximum quality and sharpness. Sure, all content creators would benefit from investing in this camera. But the real question here is, does having this monster improve your income? If you doubt, then no. If you answer "yes" straight away, then this camera is something you should consider investing in.
Wrapping it Up
First thing's first, the autofocus in this camera is nothing but empowering. Every single shooting opportunity gets optimized for outstanding visual quality. The tracking seamlessly picks up way beyond expectations, simply aim and stick it until you feel the composition has achieved its maximum aesthetic peak. Next, the overall user experience makes it an absolute delight both for the hands and the eyes. Working with this camera promises to be both comfortable and agile, enabling us content creators to be prepared for any of the decisive moments that might cross our curious minds. Last but not least, both the sensor and image processor are state-of-the-art pieces of electronics, and are the ones to take the whole credit for this insanely designed mirrorless camera.