I’ve been a massive fan of Canon since becoming a professional photographer around ten years ago. Photography is in my blood, passing down through family generations, and I currently shoot around 60 to 70 weddings a year in Staffordshire, Cheshire and throughout the UK.
I had been reading some excellent reviews about the new Fuji X-T1 cameras and lenses. Lightweight, portable, compact and an incredible (EVF) electronic viewfinder which enabled the user to see live changes including white balance, exposure and so on.
And yet, was I really ready to move from my trustworthy Canon 5D MKIII’s and 1DX to the lightweight Fuji X-T1?
I contacted Fuji regarding loan units but all the loan units were out with other photographers. So here’s the brave bit. I jumped straight in and traded-in my tried, tested and trustworthy Canon 1DX there and then for the new Fuji X-T1, together with the 56mm f1.2 and 23mm F1.4 lenses.
And the results? Incredible. Fuji had since then gone on to loan me an XF16-55 F2.8 and XF50-140 F2.8 lenses to use with the X-T1. Although I was apprehensive at first to use this new Fuji equipment at weddings, I eventually found myself over the past month or so using it more and more.
Here’s why I was so blown away with the results:
• The EVF is amazing – One massive advantage and top tip. When shooting manual focus or ‘back button focusing’ I get a split screen image in the EVF which contains a 100% preview of the focus point and a overall framed image. I am also able to adjust and see live results of exposure changes giving me a full knowledge of exactly what the finalised image will look like. In fact, I’ve found myself shooting fully manual most of the day as opposed to 60-80% Aperture priority on the Canon’s.
• The nifty folding screen helps me to reach those awkward high-up shots and low-down shots much more easily, albeit reaching high above the bride during bridal preparation or shooting low, such as ground or water level.
• The 56mm F1.2 lens is amazing – it’s one of the sharpest lenses I have ever worked with.
• And the 50-140mm F2.8 lens is really good too, in fact, seriously good – the lens is pin sharp throughout the whole focal range.
• Amazing natural light images are captured, the colour warmth and depth to the images is stunning. If you process in Lightroom like myself I would strongly advise changing the ‘Camera Calibration Profile’ back to Fuji’s own profile as Lightroom as a tendency of applying ‘Adobe Standard’ to all imported images. The photographs seem to show a ‘film look’ using Fuji’s profile and can be a little bland when using Adobe Standard.
Any negatives? Not many. I need three or four batteries to get me through the day (bit more than usual). And, with only one SD card, I miss that automatic back-up throughout the day. Plus, the Fuji focus tracking falls a little short of Canon’s. And I still prefer to work with raw images, despite Fuji’s track-record on JPG quality.
And finally, the million-dollar question..
Would I recommend the Fujifilm X-T1 and the above mentioned lenses to other wedding photographers?
Most definitely, yes. The 16-55 f2.8 is a direct competitor for the Canon 24-70 f2.8 and the 50-140 f2.8 for the Canon 70-200, pretty bold statements I know as these lenses have such a proven track record and any wedding photographer will tell you these are the ‘must have’ lenses.