Dade Freeman
Photographer & Trainer


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Fuji X-T1 Vs Canon 5DMKII

At a recent event at Park Cameras I saw the X-T1 in action and how amazing the quality of the images were. At that point, in my heart I had made the decision to get one. This is not a decision I have taken lightly. I have been battling with this choice for a long time and my brain would always win out. After the seminar I went downstairs and spoke to the Fuji rep who shown me some additional benefits and spoke about cash back and discounts etc. Let's just say he made me an offer I couldn't refuse. So with my new camera in hand, I left the store with a spring in my step and a smile on my face :)

Fuji XT-1

In just over 1 hour, I had a photoshoot involving a Geisha and was itching to use the Fuji X-T1 on that shoot. What's that? Madness you say! Well, with whatever battery life was in the camera and having never even used it before, I was determined to try. The shoot itself would be done on my 5DMKII, but I wanted to see what the Fuji could do.

The close up of the Geisha is the very first shot taken on the Fuji X-T1. Unfortunately the studio trigger decided not to work on the Fuji for some reason, so I was forced to the 5D for the studio-lit shots and used the X-T1 for ambient light behind-the-scenes shots. The shots below are from the Fuji and the Canon shots can be seen HERE.

Fast forward a few days - I have been playing around with the X-T1 and I can say, I am very happy with the results so far. When I know this camera like I know my 5D I am sure I will be able to produce even better images, as it is knowing the nuances of a camera that can help make an image.

To test how well the camera holds its own, I pitted the Fuji X-T1 with the 50-140 2.8 against the Canon 5DMKII with the 70-200 2.8L, in a head to head challenge. I think you will agree the Fuji shows a lot of promise! The compression and colour is amazing. Oh, and the weight difference is significant. I will shortly be doing more real world testing on weddings and studio shoots, but I feel confident in the Fuji's ability.

5dMKII shot of the Marina

5DMKII detail shot

Canon test

XT1 shot of the Marina

XT1 detail shot

Fuji test

While I like the colour rendition of the Fuji X-T1 over the Canon 5DMKII I can see the bokeh and DoF on the MKII is better (although that may be because my focussing distance is not the same for both cameras). I am very impressed with the EVF function allowing you to see exactly what you are capturing before you push the button - in terms of exposure.

I am still working on getting the best out of the settings and knowing where the buttons are without moving the camera away from my face, but I am getting there. The Fuji does feel slightly small in my hands (compared to the MKII), and I am considering getting the grip, to give me a better hold on the camera. An added advantage of the grip is having two batteries in the camera instead of one, that is important! My biggest issue with the XT1 is the battery life. I have since purchased more batteries so this issue should no longer matter as much.

The silent shutter means I can now grab shots like the one below without people even being aware I did. This opens up other options such as shooting stage events without disrupting the performance as has happened with the MKII.

Below is a range of Fuji X-T1 shots tweaked in LR using the Fuji presets.

Dade Freeman is a Brighton photographer creating portraits and fine art images for commercial and personal use.