I was asked to test the new firmware prior to launch by Fujifilm at the opening round of the FIA WEC at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. I updated one camera to FW4.0 and left the second X-T2 on FW3.0 to give me a baseline. I also compared the updated X-T2 with my X-H1 as a lot of the updates on the X-T2 are a result of the features found on the new X Series camera.
The version 4 firmware for the Fujifilm X-T2 will provide some useful new features while at the same time providing some significant improvements to the autofocus system, bringing some of the features that were introduced on the recently launched X-H1.
I have to report that the updated X-T2 ran faultlessly for the entire weekend I was shooting with it as my primary camera. However a number of users worldwide started to report issues once the firmware had been launched to the public.
The faults with FW4.0 that have been identified are:
1. When RAW files, which were taken by X-T2 (before firmware ver.4.00), are converted in camera (ver.4.00) or by “FUJIFILM X RAW STUDIO”, they are not converted properly.
2. When pressing the shutter button halfway under certain conditions, the live view can flicker.
3. In rare cases, a hang-up can occur.
CLICK HERE for the full press release on the Fujifilm website.
As a result Fujifilm quickly responded and issued FW update 4.01, which returns the camera to the same state as FW3.0. Fujifilm have reportedly found the issue and are working on a new update. Fujifilm will undoubtably be issuing a new firmware update in the very near future, so here are some of the highlights I found that benefit my work as a working sports photographer.
The performance enhancements to the Phase Detection AF were quite noticeable with the AF locking on to a fast moving car quickly even when the aperture was at f8 or f11 on the XF100-400mmF4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR.
Another improvement I noticed was the AF reacquired the subject a lot quicker than before if the focus was lost for some reason. This improvement was noted when I tested the X-H1 and it is a welcome enhancement on the X-T2.
AF-C performance while operating the zoom is now a lot better than before. It is not something I do a lot when working but the ability to trust the camera to keep the focus while zooming out is something that I welcome. This will be extremely useful for other sports I shoot, like international rugby, where things a little less predictable.
In the press conference on Thursday afternoon the X-T2s AF coped extremely well in the difficult artificial lighting conditions, locking on to the subject quickly.
The ability to now shoot F-Log directly to an SD card, as first seen on the X-H1, is also a very useful feature in the new firmware update. This allowed me to shoot video and then colour grade with ease in Adobe Premier Pro in post production without the need to record the F-Log footage to an external drive.
The addition of 1080/120P high-speed video mode on the X-H1 was extremely useful and the ability to record slow motion footage on the X-T2 is a very welcome addition.
For a professional photographer this is quite a useful and very welcome feature. It allows the photographer to name the folder in which the images will be stored. This means that images on different cards can be found quickly when shooting different sessions or even different positions on the track. Anything that speeds up the post processing system is very welcome in my world.
The addition of a Flicker Reduction mode is also a useful feature for anyone who shoots indoors with difficult artificial lighting. This was a very useful feature when shooting in the press conferences at Spa-Francorchamps.
The latest firmware update for the X-T2 will provide some really useful upgrades for sports photographers and videographers, giving some of the enhancements first seen on the X-H1. The firmware update will make an already excellent camera even better for both the professional and enthusiast photographer. I am 100% confident that Fujifilm will be issuing the revised software very soon.