Fujifilm this morning launched the long-rumored and hotly anticipated X-H1. This mirrorless digital camera takes on all the most advanced Fujifilm camera technologies and brings it to a whole new level with the additional of a state-of-the-art 5-axis image stabilization system effective to 5.5 stops in a body similar to their highly-acclaimed X-T2.
The new Fujifilm X-H1 is a hybrid mirrorless digital camera combining the ultimate image-quality with new and improved video quality and capabilities. This mirrorless is built around the latest 24 megapixels X-Trans CMOS III sensor and an optimized X Processor Pro. This sensor features the unique-to-Fujifilm 6×6 Pseudo-Random Color-Filter Array that does not require an Anti-Alias Filter to avoid Moire artifacts. It also has a 325-Point Phase-Detect AF system built right in. As seen in the recent Fujifilm X-E3 review, this sensor delivers superb image-quality and autofocus speed.
Thanks to processor improvements, the X-H1 becomes the first Fujifilm to record Cinema 4K, which 4096×2160 video with a 17:9 aspect-ratio. It does so at 24 FPS, while can still record 4K Ultra-HD at 30 FPS and 1080p Full-HD at 60 FPS. This is the first digital camera to introduce a Cinema HD mode that records at 2048×1080 video, also with a 17:9 aspecr-ratio, at 60 FPS.
The headline and most crucial new development for photographers is that Fujifilm added In-Body Built-In Stabilization (IBIS) to the X-H1. This system uses 3 accelerometers and 3 gyroscopes to perform 10,000 calculations-per-second in order to stabilize the sensor along 5-axis: Horizontal and vertical movement, plus 3-axis rotation, similar to systems used in several other mirrorless cameras and Pentax DSLRs. Fujifilm claims up to 5.5-stops of efficiency using one of their prime lenses, 5 stops for most other lenses with a few exceptions going down to 2.5 stops.
Having built-in image-stabilization is hugely important to improve low-light performance. This is particularly advantageous when using bright prime lenses which are rarely stabilized and where Fujifilm says their system is the most efficient. Any lens, even adapted lenses can be stabilized with such a system. Although some mirrorless manufacturers offer models without built-in stabilization, with Fujifilm joining the stabilized camp, now every maker except for Leica and Hasselblad have at least one stabilized mirrorless digital camera.
Fujifilm pioneered their own unique hybrid digital and analog design. The new X-H1 offers similar ergonomics with a third-stop ISO dial, full-stop Shutter-Speed dial and dual control-dials, used in combination with the aperture-ring found on most Fujifilm X-mount lenses. Like the Fujifilm GFX 50S Medium Format camera reviewed here, yet unlike the X-T2, the new X-H1 uses an Exposure-Compensation button rather than a dial. This should improve ergonomics as will as the new deeper grip. Also inherited from the GFX 50S, the X-H1 squeezes in a highly customizable monochrome e-Ink status display on its top-plate.
There is a new ultra-high-resolution EVF with built-in Eye-Start Sensor in this mirrorless. This 0.5″ EVF has a whopping 3.7 megapixels and shows 100% coverage at 0.75X magnification. This is very close to the best-in-class EVF in the Leica SL Typ 601. which costs roughly 8X the price of the X-H1! The X Processor Pro refreshes the EVF at 100 FPS and renders the image with an imperceptible 0.5ms of lag.
The remaining controls and rear display keep the same layout as the X-T2. While the body remains just as weatherproof and freezeproof to -10C as its predecessor, the X-H1 is made of 25% thicker magnesium allow for improved durability. Buttons are larger and more responsive for better usability. The rear 3″ LCD with 1 megapixel is mounted on a double hinge, allowing it to tilt vertically and horizontally to frame shots at odd angles. This time Fujifilm added Bluetooth to lower power consumption while remotely controller the camera.
As the newest Fujifilm flagship camera, the X-H1 delivers on speed and versatility. Its hybrid shutter has been redesigned to minimize shutter-shock and noise, while still being capable of Electronic Front Curtain Shutter (EFCS) mode or fully Electronic mode. With the latter, the camera can shoot continuously at 14 FPS for 40 JPEG images or 27 RAW files. In mechanical mode, the usual speed is 8 FPS which can be boosted to 11 FPS when used with the optional battery-grip for up to 70 JPEGs or 28 RAWs. At 6 FPS, which is possible with EFCS, or 5 FPS, the X-H1 can shoot JPEG images indefinitely.
The Fujifilm X-H1 is scheduled to ship two weeks from today for a price of $1900 USD or $2450 CAD. Adorama and B&H Photo are already accepting pre-orders. Order your fast as these are expected to sell out extremely quickly, given the sensor is known already to produce amazing-quality images,