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Fujifilm Manager: GFX Triumph and Full Frame Attack Strategy, Shrinking IBIS, AI Future, Fuji X-H2 Needs Breakthrough, COVID and More


Imaging-resource published a long and very interesting interview with various Fujifilm managers, including Toshihisa Iida).

Here is a summary:


  • COVID: all back to normal now. Chinese factory was closed for 2 weeks in February and the factory in the Philippines was closed in April
  • due to closed retail shops, April was the worst month in terms of sales, now slowly recovering
  • Fujifilm did better than the market trend, due to Fujfilm X-T4 and X100V launch
  • demand for X-T4 is very strong
  • in 2020, probably demand will not go back to the same level as last year
  • when Fuji presents its fiscal reports, in the imaging division report there is the section “Electronic imaging” and this is almost 100% digital cameras and interchangeable lenses
  • overall for the imaging segment, the profit is still relatively OK
  • CIPA predicts a further 20% drop this year for the camera industry, but Fujifilm thinks that is too pessimistic
  • Fujifilm focuses on high end devices and hence the drop should not be as bad
  • GFX100 sales much higher than Fuji predicted and X-T3 demand is strong
  • Fujifilm ignores Full Frame, which makes them different to all other companies
  • instead of doing what everybody does, Fujifilm went a different path

GFX Triumph and Strategy

  • top full frame cameras are priced around $3,000-5,000. Fujifilm targets those customers to expand customer base
  • at that price point, people can choose full frame or upgrade to medium format GFX
  • as flange distance is different, XF lenses can’t be adapted to GFX cameras
  • you can adapt DSLR lenses to Fujifilm GFX with smart autofocus adapters
  • 70-80% of GFX customers were coming from non-Fuji cameras. Most probably from full frame DSLR cameras
  • GFX 50R targets street photographers. GFX 100 is more serious or professional photographers: Fashion, commercial, fashion portrait…
  • high requests for GFX cameras also among museums and libraries for archival purpose
  • Fujifilm GFX100 is currently the best selling GFX camera. GFX50R is close to GFX100 sales. GFX50S sees half the sales of GFX50R.
  • GFX sells 50% better than they predicted
  • GFX lens attachment rate: about 3 lenses per 1 GFX camera
  • Fujifilm X system has a lower lens attachment rate than GFX system
  • GFX system is really good business for Fujifilm
  • the medium format look is striking to full-frame customers: 3D-feel, higher resolution, dynamic range, lenses than can resolve 100MP
  • GFX is best for image quality
  • size, weight, price… Fujifilm is looking on how to make medium-format attractive and realistic as a choice for customers
  • the success with the GFX50R was its smaller size
  • But with GFX100 Fujifilm wanted to make the perfect GFX camera, hence put IBIS into it for best usability, which made the camera bigger
  • for GFX100 users portability is not as important as usability (for example handheld 100MP shooting thanks to IBIS)
  • for the future, GFX has to become smaller and cheaper

AI / IBIS / new X-T4 shutter

  • Fujifilm is investigating what AI can do to help future picture-taking
  • current processor is not powerful enough to deal with AI, but Fujifilm thinks it will be included in cameras in the future
  • IBIS in X-T4 and X-H1 can cooperate with the lens OIS
  • But for the GFX 100 Fujifilm doesn’t have the cooperative stabilization because OIS can deliver almost all the stabilization performance
  • the IBIS on X-T4 can exceed the OIS performance of the lens, hence up to 6.5 stops stabilization on X-T4
  • Some lenses have a big image circle, so the IBIS unit can move further to stabilize the image.
  • in order to make IBIS smaller, Fujifilm removed all 3 coil springs and replaced them with magnets
  • X-H1 has six magnets. Three for sensing, and three for moving position. X-T4 has only three magnets doing both jobs
  • this made IBIS 30% smaller and 20% lighter as well as 8 times more accurate thanks to a new gyro sensor (8x more detection accuracy of vibration than X-H1, making it possible to correct blur even at the edge of the image circle)
  • current IBIS unit still too big for X-Pro body
  • X-T4 impressive 300,000 actuations thanks to: new coreless DC motor for quick starting and stopping and more torque. Fuji changed the position of the injection into the mold for more rigidity. Newly-designed spring to absorb the shock

Fujifilm X-H2

  • Fujifilm continues to “investigate future X-H cameras”
  • X-T and X-H are two clearly different lines. What is the difference? “Difficult to say now; we need some sort of the breakthrough, probably.”
  • it’s not enough for the X-H2 to be an X-T4 with bigger grip, “we have to have something more revolutionary.”
  • X-H2 is where new technology will enter the product line

D-Pad removal & mixed

  • some cameras have no D-Pad to avoid misoperating
  • X-Pro3 has hidden tilt LCD to differenciate more from X-T4


  • GF requires a smaller number of lenses compared to the XF lens lineup, because with the XF we need big telephoto zooms, for example, to meet the demand for sports photographers
  • XF33mmF1.0 was too big. Fujifilm went for the XF50mmF1.0, which also has much more beautiful bokeh than the XF33mmF1.0


  • X-T4 has digital image stabilization. Older Fuji cameras won’t get it via firmware update, because it probably requires the new gyro sensor present only on the X-T4

You can read the full and comprehensive interview at imaging-resource.

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