UPDATE, May 17th: FUJIFILM has pulled down their newly released 4.0 firmware due to malfunction. None of the discovered problems are video related. For more information head to the full press release here: http://www.fujifilm.com/news/n180517.html
FUJIFILM has just announced a firmware update for its popular X-T2 camera. The update contains the much anticipated internal F-Log recording, 120fps in full HD mode and more!
It is nice to see that FUJIFILM has listened to their customers, who requested internal F-Log recording in order to upgrade the quality of their work, especially after including that features in the newer FUJIFILM X-H1. If you have been following our recent FUJIFILM coverage, you know that we’ve already hinted towards the arrival of an internal F-Log recording for the X-T2 back in November 2017 when interviewing Watanabe-san of FUJIFILM. I’ve already tested and reviewed the X-T2 back in 2016, so although this is not a full X-T2 review, I’ve decided to take it for a spin and see how well (Or not) it behaves with the new firmware update and check if it can match with the newer X-H1 performance, when it comes to shooting video.
Why would we want record in “F-Log” log-gamma mode?
In a nutshell, the are two main reasons as to why to shoot in this mode. The first one is to get the best available dynamic range the camera can provide. This will allow for the opportunity of recovering highlights and seeing details in the darker areas of the image in a better way. The second reason is the possibility to paint the footage and color correct the recorded flat images to your liking. Look at the above slide taken from the timeline and see the highlights in the background. This shows the difference between an image with “backed color” (Left) and one that a LUT was applied to (Right). It’s easy to spot where the highlights are preserved in a better way.
Fujifilm X-T2 in the filed (New firmware related observation):
If you are familiar with FUJIFILM’s camera menu, then setting up the X-T2 won’t be a problem although one might find it challenging to locate the new F-Log settings. Unlike with the X-H1, this option is buried in a sub menu (4K MOVIE OUTPUT) and not on the front MOVIE SETTING page. I can suspect that due to a hardware limitation, this option could not be brought to the front menu page. When it comes to grading the F-Log footage itself, I’ve gotten a bit of a mixed bag results, especially when referring to skin tones. (I can relate what I see to 8bit color sampling limitation). As the firmware is now available to download I’m actually very curious to hear and see what people will come up with. (I’ll update this post with my observation after double checking the footage I’ve got). One more thing to be aware of is the possibility to get “turn off and on again” error note. I got this message multiple times during my shooting day and I could not determine why it is happening. On the positive side, the new 1080/120fps setting really looks good! (The footage in my video is all upscaled to 4K in order to match the rest of the timeline setting). Last but not least, the ability to enlarge and customize the location of indicators or information in the viewfinder and/or LCD monitor is a superb thing. I guess you have to be over a certain age in order to appreciate such a feature…..
Fujifilm X-T2 vs. X-H1 (Video mode):
Although the bridge between the cameras has just been narrowed, to my opinion the upper hand still goes to the X-H1. With its higher data rate recording, Internal body stabilization, the possibility to shoot in ETERNA film simulation mode out of the box and touchscreen autofocus (Just to name a few), the X-H1 certainly has the lead.
FUJIFILM Firmware Ver. 4.00 Update – Key Features:
- Internal F-log to SD card recording function.
- Addition of 1080p 120 frames per second mode.
- Compatibility with the newly developed FUJINON MKX18-55mmT2.9 and FUJINON MKX50-135mmT2.9 cinema lenses. Aperture information can be displayed on the monitor. The upgrade allows users to select T-stop or F-stop. The upgrade allows users to check the focus distance with the distance indicator shown in the monitor. Automatically corrects the distortion and the color/brightness shading. Camera automatically calculates the White Balance based on the lens position and delivers the color expressions with Film Simulation modes.
- Ability to enlarge and customize the location of indicators or information in the viewfinder and/or LCD monitor (this feature is newly available for all cameras that get the firmware update).
FUJIFILM did well in listening to their customers by giving “new life” to one of their most popular cameras. All in all, this is a capable video shooting device that can perform well when treated right. (Don’t forget to take a stabilized lens or a tripod with you when out and about). I also have to highlight the camera’s sound quality! To my opinion, FUJIFILM is doing exceptionally well when it comes to sound recording in the X-T2 and X-H1 compare to other stills cameras manufactures.
The “caffe latte” part of the above video was shot on Fujifilm X-T2, F-Log enabled and was edited in Adobe Premiere latest edition. Color graded with FilmConvert (X-T2 F-Log profile).
Many thanks to Dinah, her family and the staff at caffe latte. Find out more about the place by clicking here.
What do you think of the new FUJIFILM Firmware update? Are there any X-T2 users who are welcoming the F-log feature? Let us know in the comments below.