Why Fuji ?

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I have been trying to write a blog post on the Fuji X-T1 and the 10-24mm f/4 lens for quite a while now, but every time I sit down to write it, I just think about all the other blog posts out there that are so much better than mine! I am not a technical photographer my interest in photography is for business and pleasure. I don’t spend a great amount of time looking in the menus. I read the manual and then just pick up the camera and go out and use it. I then find out how it works on a daily basis by just using it. I only use the functions I need and forget the rest, therefore I am not the best person for a technical blog. Gordon Lang is probably your man for a technical insight into the Fuji cameras and the X-T1  he will give a balanced view.

I get asked all the time why I changed from Nikon to Fuji every time I do a talk or workshop, it’s my most asked question. So I am going to try and answer that question today. First my thoughts on the X-T1 and the 10-24mm f4.

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I was so in love with the XPro1, I was not going to buy the X-T1, when the X-T1 was launched it had a tilting screen and I have always wanted a camera with a tilting screen. It has so many great uses for events and street photography. I then found out it would have a battery grip this was another great add on the XPro1 did not have and for my event work this was going to be a great help. The focus speed was also a lot quicker and the frame rate with a fast SD card was also going to help me at the events I am booked to cover for 2014.

So, to be honest, that is why I bought the X-T1 ! Now having the camera for a few months I know it was a great decision. I don’t use half of what the camera has to offer me as I have said, I am not that technical. I do love the fact all the functions I need I can get to from the outside of the camera very quickly and very easily.  This was one of the reasons I changed to Fuji in the first place. I do also love the fact I can control the camera from my i Pad and i Phone. I love this app and it’s not just a button pressing app. I have full control of focus point, shutter speed, aperture, ISO, film simulation etc all from an App ! I hear this app will be further developed in the future, I do hope they add long exposure capabilities then it will be awesome!

I have used the X-T1 for street photography and its great. I do prefer the XPro1 most of the time and the XPro1 with the 35mm or 18mm lens is my default street camera. For something a bit different the X-T1 is great fun. The i phone app makes it very interesting for those candid shots!  For events the X-T1 is my go to camera. Fuji do not make a fast event lens so I have had to adapt my style to suit the camera until the 50-140 f/2.8 is released later this year. I love the fact I can shoot all day without arm ache and I love the flexibility of the rear screen. I also love the fact I can put the camera anywhere on stage and just use the Wifi app to shoot away with full control. I can safely say I love the Fuji X-T1 for events.  Yes, I could do with a fast long prime. My event lenses in the past with Nikon were the 70-200mm f2.8 VRII and the Sigma 300mm f/2.8, I do miss both those lenses but the Fuji 60mm and 55-200mm are both great, I find myself shooting with the 35mm most of the time with an adapted style !

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The X-T1 is my D3s replacement and apart from the high ISO capability of the D3s and the battery life I have no real issues. There has been talk about the D Pad issue! I have great big fat sausage fingers and it’s not a problem for me! But I don’t spend a lot of time in the menus. I set up the camera and then go out and shoot, most of what I need when I am out and about in the way of camera functions, I can access from the camera.

I have been using the 10-24mm f/4 lens now for quite a while. It’s not a lightweight lens, it’s a great big chunk of glass and  just the best great big chunk of glass I have had in my hands for ages ! I am a prime lover first and I also love a great zoom. In the past using Nikon for over 30 years, I have always been impressed by Nikon Primes but their Zooms have been hit and miss for me. One of my favorite wide zooms when I had a crop sensor Nikon was the 10-20mm Sigma lens, this was stunning , some people said it was soft but most of the people that thought that had a filter to protect the front element and this was the problem. Once the filter was removed the Sigma 10-20mm was awesome. When I changed to full frame Nikon I had to sell my Sigma 10-24mm and buy the Nikon 14-24mm,  this lens was stunning but it had its faults. You could not use filters with it and it would flair like mad in the sun or with any direct light ! There are filter kits now available for the 14-24mm but very expensive. Well let me tell you this Fuji 10-24mm kills the Sigma 10-20mm and the Nikon 14-24mm stone dead, I am in love with this lens. I have just spent a couple of weeks in Scotland and the 10-24mm f/4 has not left my X-T1 ! Its sharp and it takes filters, what more could you ask for. There is more, it had IOS so it’s a very special lens. I am so impressed by the 10-24mm. I am very excited to see the 50-140mm f/2.8 and the 16-55mm f/2.8 due out later this year.

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So why Fuji ? Well its natural progression in a way but a massive choice. I could have gone with Sony, Olympus or even stayed with Nikon or Canon. I was looking for an alternative camera to the great big pro body D3s I was carrying around for quite a while. I had tried the D7000, I had a D200 and a D300 but they were all too big and so were the lenses. I had been looking at the Mirrorless options for a while. The cameras were all good and getting great reviews but the lenses and future lenses were not that great. Then the X100 came out ! What can I say, no sensor cleaning and the lens was awesome. The camera was quirky and at first the reviews were not great. Most people said it’s just an X10  but the X10 had a Zoom. I bought an X10 from e bay and used it for a while then sold it. I did not process many of the images for a while. I kept looking at X100 reports and they were getting better and better. So I processed the X10 iamges and made a discovery, they were very nice and great in black and white. So I got a X100 from e bay with a few batteries and a few extras and that was it, I was hooked!

I hardly used my D3s for my private work and the X100 was my go to camera, it was quirky yes but it was great. Carry anywhere, sharp and no sensor cleaning, what an amazing piece of kit. I was so impressed with it but it could not help me with my work so after a chance trip to Cambrian Photography I purchased the XPro1 with a couple of lenses. I was due to go to Venice on a trip and this was going to be a big test. I left all my Nikon gear at home and just packed the Fuji Xpro1 and 18mm 35mm and 18-55mm. This was a journey of discovery, not only did I decide to sell all my pro Nikon gear I discovered the Fuji lenses were stunning ! The 18-55mm lens was one of the best Zoom lenses I have ever used. It was quite hard to decide what lens to use each day, but that’s the best bit, you can put them all in a bag and take the lot they just don’t weigh anything. I walked around Venice for miles and miles for a week and did not get back ache or shoulder ache, I was now addicted to Mirrorless.

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On my return to the UK I decided to sell all my Nikon gear. I invested in Fuji glass and cameras. When I say invest I mean buy the best tools for the Job.  So why Fuji over the others, it was not an easy choice, I wanted the best glass, I was always told to invest in glass as the bodies will need updating every year or so but the lenses will last 10-20years ! I had a look at what all the others had to offer and there was not much of a choice to be honest. Fuji had a lens road map that made sense. The lenses I had were very well made and looked solid and worth investing in.

Not only was Fuji investing time and money in lenses but Zeiss were making glass for Fuji. That opened my eyes to the future and I wanted to know more. After a few phone calls I found out that Fuji glass and Zeiss glass were so good people were not sure what was best.

I decided to invest in Fuji before the X-T1 came out. I have no doubt Fuji will bring out an XPro2 Next year and an X-T2 and who knows they might even surprise us with a Fuji XXL Medium Format in the future. There has been a lot of talk about full frame and quirky Fuji issues and the fact Fuji don’t have a menu to suit HDR shooters. Personally I don’t care, if I wanted to shoot HDR I would shoot it in manual and expose for the areas I wanted to blend and not have 9 shots when I only needed 3 !  I left full frame to move to this amazing Fuji sensor and don’t miss full frame one bit.   I did not invest in Fuji for what they have now as such. I did invest in Fuji for the lenses they have now and the lenses on the road map. I do love the XPro1 and will never sell this camera as it’s my go to street camera.   I have made the change because I love Fuji as a company. They are listening to the Pro’s and the consumers. They are making firmware updates for all their range and they are constantly making tweaks and changes based on consumer feedback. They might not add everything people want but that is a good thing. If they did we might have a camera the size of the D3s and I would be back to square one !

The rumor sites are busy in photoshop making new cameras for Fuji and coming out with all sorts of info. One thing I think is great is that there is a rumor site and page and so many Fuji related social media sites it hard to keep up ! I think that speaks volumes !

I love mirrorless and it’s a natural progression. Great big wooden plate camera and then 35mm film and 120mm film etc then the Digital DSLR and now the ever growing range of mirrorless bodies and lenses.

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I am quite sure there will be a battle of the mirrorless cameras over the next few years but the X100 was a game changer. Let’s face it Nikon brought out the Df to try and make a Retro camera because of the X100 and XPro1. They were trying to make a Nikon Fm2, I still have a Fm2 and shoot with it to this day. The closest camera I have to the Fm2 in modern times is the X-T1.

We all have choice and I decided Fuji was the way forward for me. Do they have the perfect camera for me for everything I shoot ? No, but they have 90% of the lenses I need and by the end of this year I hope to have the other 10%. They do have the XPro1 my go to street camera, they do have the X-T1 my all round amazing Fm2 replacement and in the future they will bring out even more stunning lenses and camera bodies and that excites me.

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It’s not the camera that takes the picture it’s the photographer. I have chosen a camera brand that excites me not just today but I am excited about the lens roadmap and the future bodies. I have been called a fanboy, it’s true in a way but after 30 plus years of Nikon I wanted a brand and camera that would inspire me to take photographs and not just inspire me but infuse me with passion. Fuji staff are passionate about their brand and passionate about the future of their lenses and cameras. I know for a fact some of the other brands are very jealous of Fuji and so they should be. I believe Fuji are shaking this industry up, they are making a camera for photographers to use and control, not just a camera that anyone can use. This statement might confuse some people, of course any one can pick up an XPro1 or any other Fuji and shoot with it, but by putting all the controls on the outside it  gives the Photographer back control of the camera. Allowing the Photographer to control the camera and not the camera control the Photographer!

One life, Capture it !

26 thoughts on “Why Fuji ?

    […] I get asked all the time why I changed from Nikon to Fuji every time I do a talk or workshop, it’s my most asked question. So I am going to try and answer that question today, but first my thoughts on the X-T1 and the 10-24mm f4.  […]

    Jeff said:
    June 11, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    I enjoyed this, thank you

    Why Fuji ? | Fuji X files | Scoop.it said:
    June 11, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    […] I have been trying to write a blog post on the Fuji X-T1 and the 10-24mm f/4 lens for quite a while now, but every time I sit down to write it, I just think about all the other blog posts out there that are so much better than mine! I am not a technical photographer my interest in photography is for business and pleasure but I don’t spend a great amount of time looking in the menus, I read the manual and then just pick up the camera and go out and use it, I then find out how it works on a daily bases by just using it, I only use the functions I need and forget the rest, therefore I am not the best person for a technical blog. Gordon Lang is probably your man for a technical insight into the Fuji cameras and the X-T1 he will give a balanced view. I get asked all the time why I changed from Nikon to Fuji every time I do a talk or workshop, it’s my most asked question. So I am going to try and answer that question today, but first my thoughts on the X-T1 and the 10-24mm f4.  […]

    Richard said:
    June 12, 2014 at 5:50 am

    Excellent post Matt. It took me 5 tries and like you I kept falling into the “I just think about all the other blog posts out there that are so much better than mine” mindset. I suppose I only wrote mine because I want to share a non technical, non professional review with others as I prefer “real life” opinions. I am still learning how to get the very best out of all my Fuji X gear, but I think I’m slowly getting there.

      matt6t6 responded:
      June 12, 2014 at 6:57 am

      I guess also being dyslexic writing a blog post is one of the hardest parts of social media for me. I do enjoy sharing my photography in the way of images and workshops and talks. It’s only the blogs I struggle with. Glad you liked the post and an attempt at a real live opinion and not to bogged down in technical jargon.

    Alberto said:
    June 12, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    Reblogged this on alberto ianiro.

    Why Fuji ? | Matt Hart | Fuji X-Pro1 | Scoop.it said:
    June 12, 2014 at 3:43 pm

    […] I have been trying to write a blog post on the Fuji X-T1 and the 10-24mm f/4 lens for quite a while now, but every time I sit down to write it, I just think about all the other blog posts out there that are so much better than mine! I am not a technical photographer my interest in photography is for business and pleasure. I don’t spend a great amount of time looking in the menus. I read the manual and then just pick up the camera and go out and use it. I then find out how it works on a daily basis by just using it. I only use the functions I need and forget the rest, therefore I am not the best person for a technical blog. Gordon Lang is probably your man for a technical insight into the Fuji cameras and the X-T1 he will give a balanced view. I get asked all the time why I changed from Nikon to Fuji every time I do a talk or workshop, it’s my most asked question. So I am going to try and answer that question today. First my thoughts on the X-T1 and the 10-24mm f4…….  […]

    Why Fuji ? | Matt Hart › By TOMEN said:
    June 12, 2014 at 3:43 pm

    […] See on matthewhartphotography.wordpress.com […]

    […] I have been trying to write a blog post on the Fuji X-T1 and the 10-24mm f/4 lens for quite a while now, but every time I sit down to write it, I just think about all the other blog posts out there…  […]

    Chris said:
    June 12, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    Nice post! I went through the same process and sold my entire Nikon collection two months ago and do not regret it. The Fuji lenses are indeed pretty amazing especially when you consider their size and weight.

      matt6t6 responded:
      June 12, 2014 at 6:49 pm

      I will be Nikon / DSLR free a year in September and I don’t regret it one bit.The Fuji lenses are very special and there quality control is consistent ! Not heard one moan about a bad one yet !

    Peter said:
    June 13, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    Matt
    This was such a great personal insight and journey that I was compelled to ‘de-cloak’ and put fingers to keyboard – a great post that has me wondering about my ‘haul’ of Nikon lenses (now not greatly used) as I too have jumped head first into the Fuji pool and have love every minute of it.

    Cheers
    Peter

      matt6t6 responded:
      June 13, 2014 at 1:54 pm

      Thanks Peter, Its been a long time for me to be this passionate about any Camera cameras system. To be honest its like starting out again on a journey of discovery !

    Roger said:
    June 13, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    Great article. I have just done the same having shot Nikon since the FM in the late 70’s. A few years ago I bought X100 and was really impressed with the image quality. Then about a month ago I replaced it with a X-E2 + 18-55, received a 55-200 for free and added a 35mm f1.4. Then like so many others sold my D800 and the trinity of lenses, added a X-T1 and will shortly be getting the 10-24 to complete my Fuji kit. Now I have great kit for street and landscape, I could not be happier and my back appreciates the reduction in weight as well!

      matt6t6 responded:
      June 13, 2014 at 1:55 pm

      Thanks Roger, the back ache alone is a great reason. But Fuji glass is stunning, so much more to come over the next few years.

    wilgenix said:
    June 15, 2014 at 9:00 am

    Absolutely brilliant article Matt! Particularly enjoyed the honesty of your decisions and recognising the unknowns but how much happier you are, not only with your choices, but for the future of your brand. Bravo matey

      matt6t6 responded:
      June 15, 2014 at 1:43 pm

      Cheers buddy, I have to tell it as it is, think there is more need for clarity these days.

    Gaston Plourde said:
    June 20, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    Thanks Matt for this nice article. I bought an X-T1 / 18-55 about 2 months ago and love it. I was wondering if I should also order the 10-24. After reading your article, I think I will… Cheers!

      matt6t6 responded:
      June 20, 2014 at 2:16 pm

      10-24mm is stunning go for it 🙂

    […] Why Fuji ? at matthewhartphotography: “I know for a fact some of the other brands are very jealous of Fuji and so they should be. […]

    […] “I left all my Nikon gear at home and just packed the Fuji Xpro1 and 18mm 35mm and 18-55mm. This was a journey of discovery, not only did I decide to sell all my pro Nikon gear I discovered the Fuji lenses were stunning !”  […]

    Alain Mijngheer said:
    June 25, 2014 at 6:41 pm

    I rather enjoyed reading your post here as I do have a similar view as an “almost” former Nikon person. I did invest in Fuji too 🙂
    Anyhow, I quite like the way you processed the images in B&W, could you enlighten us a bit more on how you did it?
    Grtz,

    Alain

      Maria Sacadura said:
      February 18, 2015 at 12:10 pm

      Thanks Matt for an excellent article! I too went from Canon to Fuji and I’m now a very proud owner of a Fuji xt1. I started with a x10, changed for an xe1 and finally went for the Xt1. I have the 18-55,35 and the 55-230! I would like to go for the 10-24, probably in Summer! I use Row + jpeg and I’m experiment the different films !

    Why Fuji ? | fuji XT1 | Scoop.it said:
    September 6, 2015 at 9:21 pm

    […] He estado tratando de escribir una entrada de blog en el Fuji X-T1 y el 10-24mm f / 4 de la lente durante bastante tiempo ahora, pero cada vez que me siento a escribir, yo sólo pienso en todas las otras entradas del blog a cabo Ya está…  […]

    Why Fuji ? | the view from the left | Scoop.it said:
    November 1, 2015 at 5:48 pm

    […] I have been trying to write a blog post on the Fuji X-T1 and the 10-24mm f/4 lens for quite a while now, but every time I sit down to write it, I just think about all the other blog posts out there that are so much better than mine!  […]

    kristoffa said:
    August 25, 2016 at 6:02 pm

    Just read your article and thought I should have written that! For years I used Nikon DLSRs with lenses from 12mm for business to the 70-200 for pleasure. Then a year or two ago I started to get backache carrying the heavy kit around. I would often be taking photos one handed so add to that wristache. On a whim decided to buy the X100S for personal use. Result, absolutely stunning shots – I felt I had suddenly discovered photography. Then I bought the XT1 with the 10-24 lens for business. Oh wow! Turned the chore of taking property shots into a pleasure. Didn’t even need to carry the large flash, just used the EF-X8 (light as a feather) as the quality at higher iso settings is incredible and resulted in some quite atmospheric room photos. I feel lucky to have stumbled into the Fuji world – no going back to the dark side now!

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