Fujifilm's going to run out of generations who fondly remember film cameras.
Fujifilm is a master of retro camera design, and it's continuing its trend of capitalizing on that to challenge the leaders in its class, the new Sony A6400 and last year's Canon EOS M50.
Its new X-T30, the step-down enthusiast model from the powerhouse X-T3 and successor to the X-T20 , inherits a lot of capabilities from the more expensive X-T3 and an updated version of the X-T20's body. Plus, Fujifilm throws in some refinements to the autofocus operation that should improve the experience.
Priced to directly compete against the M50 and the A6400, it serves up a similar set of features to both, though it hews closer to the better A6400 when it comes to performance cred.
Fujifilm's retro style really does make it stand out compared with Canon's and Sony's more mundane body designs, but even devoted enthusiasts can be put off -- or scared off -- by the intimidating array of dials intended to trigger warm fuzzy feelings associated with old-school film cameras and miss the fact that you don't really have to use them if you don't want to. You can go full auto and still look cool.
The X-T30 will become available in the US near the end of March -- June for the snazzy new Charcoal Silver model -- at $900 for the body, $1,000 for a kit with the XC15-45mm f3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens or $1,299 for the kit with the XF18-55mm f2.8-4 R LM OIS lens. Along with the camera, Fujifilm's rolling out a new fast prime lens, the $400 XF16mmF2.8 R WR.
We don't have pricing for availability for other regions, but the US prices directly convert to £700 and AU$1,270 for the body, £780 and AU$1,410 for the 15-45mm lens kit and £1,010 and AU$1,835 for the 18-55mm lens kit. The lens translates to about £310 and AU$565.
The biggest updates to the operation are enhancements to the accuracy of the face and eye detection autofocus, including the ability to spot faces that are farther away (i.e., smaller in the scene). You can now select a face via the touchscreen when there are multiple people in the scene, and there's improved autofocus speed because the AF processing can now walk and chew gum at the same time -- it doesn't have to stop using the on-sensor phase detection in order to measure the exposure again, for example.
These enhancements will make their way into the X-T3 via a firmware update coming this month, along with improvements to the responsiveness of the touchscreen. The company will also be releasing a new version of its mobile app.
The grip's thumb rest has been redesigned, and I'm not sure I like it -- the Quick menu button is now way too easy to hit with my thumb and the front grip still feels a little shallow. But the Focus Lever takes over navigational duties without a hitch, though it's a little twitchy like many of the multiway joysticks. The new touchscreen is a bit thinner than before, which let Fujifilm shave a little off the depth of the body.
Otherwise, the camera uses the same sensor (so the same on-chip hybrid phase-detection/contrast-detection AF) and metering systems as the X-T3, has the same continuous-shooting speed but a smaller buffer (so fewer shots), slower flash synchronization speed, lower maximum video bit rate and so on. Those differences are subtleties that tend to distinguish between professional and enthusiast cameras.
|Canon EOS M50||Fujifilm X-T30||Sony A6400|
|Sensor effective resolution||24.1MP Dual Pixel CMOS||26.1MP X-Trans BSI CMOS 4 14-bit||24.2MP Exmor CMOS 14 bit|
|Sensor size||22.3 x 14.9mm||23.5 x 15.6mm||23.5 x 15.6mm|
|Sensitivity range||ISO 100 - ISO 25600/51200 (exp)||ISO 80 (exp)/ISO 160 (exp)/200 - ISO 12800/51200 (exp)||ISO 100 - ISO 32000/ISO 102400 (exp)|
|Burst shooting||7.4fps 47 JPEG (10fps with fixed focus and exposure; Servo AF not supported with raw)||8fps 90 JPEG/18 raw (20fps with eshutter)||11fps 99 JPEG/46 raw|
|Viewfinder (mag/ effective mag)||EVF 0.4 in/10mm 2.4m dots 100% coverage n/a||OLED EVF 0.4-inch/10mm 2.4m million dots 100% coverage .93/0.62x||OLED EVF 0.4 in/10 mm 2.4 million dots 100% coverage 1.07x/0.7x|
|Autofocus||143 points phase-detection AF (with specific Canon lenses); 99 points||425-point phase-detection AF 91-area Contrast AF||425-point phase detection, 425-area contrast AF|
|AF sensitivity||-2 - 18 EV||-3 to n/a EV||-2 - 20 EV|
|Shutter speed||30 - 1/4,000 sec.; bulb; 1/200 x-sync||30-1/4,000 sec. (1/32,000 sec with electronic shutter); bulb to 60 min; 1/180 sec x-sync||30-1/4,000 sec.; bulb; 1/160 x-sync|
|Metering||384 zones||256 zones||1,200 zones|
|Metering sensitivity||0 - 20 EV||n/a||-2 - 20 EV|
|Best video||H.264 QuickTime MOV 4K UHD/24p at 120Mbps, 1080/60p, 720/120p||H.264 QuickTime MOV DCI 4K/30p at 200Mbps; UHD 4K/30p at 200Mbps; 10-bit 4:2:0 internal, 4:2:2 external||XAVC S at 100Mbps; UHD 4K/30p, 25p, 24p; 1080/120p|
|Audio||Stereo; mic input||Stereo; mic input, headphone jack||Stereo, mic input|
|Manual aperture and shutter in video||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Maximum best-quality recording time per clip||4GB/29m59s||10 minutes||n/a|
|Clean HDMI out||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|IS||Dual Sensing IS (Optical with gyro data sent from body)||Optical||Optical|
|Display||3-inch/7.7 cm Articulated touchscreen 1.04m dots||3 in/7.5 cm Multiangle tilting touch 1.04 million dots||3-inch/7.5cm Tilting, flip-up 921,600 dots|
|Memory slots||1 x SDXC||1 x SDXC||1 x SDXC|
|Wireless connection||Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), NFC, Bluetooth||Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n), Bluetooth||Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n), NFC, Bluetooth|
|Battery life (CIPA rating)||235 shots (875 mAh)||380 shots (1,260 mAh)||360 (VF), 410 (LCD) (1,020 mAh)|
|Size (WHD)||4.6 x 3.5 x 2.3 in 116 x 88 x 59 mm||4.7 x 3.3 x 1.8 in 118 x 83 x 47 mm||4.8 x 2.8 x 2.4 in 120 x 67 x 60 mm|
|Body operating weight||13.8 oz (est.) 390 g (est.)||13.5 oz (est.) 383 g (est.)||14.3 oz (est.) 403 g (est.)|
|Mfr. price (body only)||$779 (est.), £539.99, AU$899.95 (est.)||$899||$899.99, £949, AU$1,499|
|Primary kit||$899.99, £649.99, AU$949 (with 15-45mm lens)||$999 (with 15-45mm zoom lens)||$999.99, £999, AU$1,699 (with 16-50mm power zoom lens)|
|Release date||April 2018||March 2019||January 2019|