NewsPhotography

The Fujifilm X-H2 announces APS-C mirrorless camera for stills and video shoot

Fujifilm X-H2
Sample photoSample photoSample photoSample photoSample photo

Product images by Richard Butler

Silver Award

89%
Overall score

The Fujifilm X-H2 is a high-end 40MP APS-C mirrorless camera for both stills and video shooting. Its high-resolution stills and 8K video capabilities stand in contrast to the high-speed shooting and fast-readout 4K capabilities of its X-H2S sister model.

Key specifications

  • 40MP BSI CMOS X-Trans APS-C sensor
  • 15 fps with mechanical shutter (20 fps with e-shutter, 1.29x crop)
  • 8K, 6.2K or 2:1 oversampled 4K video at up to 30p
  • Three versions of Pro Res, H.265 or H.264 video encoding
  • Built-in image stabilization rated to 7.0 stops
  • 5.76M-dot EVF capable of up to 120 fps refresh
  • 1 CFexpress Type B, 1 UHS-II SD card slot
  • Full-sized HDMI port
  • 680 shot-per-charge battery rating (CIPA)
  • Compatibility with battery grip or transmitter module

The X-H2 will be available from late September at a recommended cost of $1,999.

The X-H2 is compatible with both the VG-XH battery grip, which takes two batteries and costs $399, and the file transfer grip launched alongside it at a cost of $999. It’s also compatible with the $199 add-on fan unit, if you want to record longer periods of high-res video.



  • Sept 8: Initial review published
  • March 20: Image quality, Video, Autofocus, Conclusion and updated Sample gallery published

What’s new

40MP BSI X-Trans CMOS sensor

The biggest new feature of the X-H2 is its use of a new 40MP BSI CMOS sensor, the highest-resolution chip of its size we’ve seen in an APS-C consumer camera. A BSI sensor doesn’t offer the significant speed benefits of the stacked CMOS chip in the X-H2S, but is able to deliver slightly lower read noise while also allowing the camera to be less expensive.

The chip uses Fuji’s X-Trans color filter array up front. This filter is designed to reduce the risk of moiré appearing compared to Bayer filters (where it’s still a risk even with high-res sensors and bright, sharp lenses) by having a less regularly-repeating pattern to its red and blue channels; however there’s a narrower choice of software that’ll get the very best out of it.

We look in more detail at the sensor later in the review, but the additional detail comes with some increase in noise when viewed at 100% (simply because each individual pixel will get less light). What’s more interesting is looking at its whole-image quality, to see whether there’s any overall noise cost to its higher level of detail capture.

8K video

Mic, headphones and a full-sized HDMI socket: video is just as central to the X-H2 as it is to the X-H2S.

The move to a 40MP sensor gives the X-H2 enough pixels to deliver 8K video from the full width of its sensor, and sure enough that’s what the camera offers, at framerates of up to 30p. There’s also a 2:1 oversampled ‘HQ’ 4K mode taken from this 8K capture, or a sub-sampled version that can be shot at up to 60p.

If 8K is more than you’re looking for, the camera offers a 6.2K mode that also appears to be oversampled and derived from the 8K output. Interestingly, the 6.2K footage is in the 16:9 aspect ratio commonly used in video, unlike the similarly-named mode in the X-H2S that produces the taller 3:2, photo-shaped output. We have to assume that the change is to provide a degree of flexibility for cropping or post-shot detail processing without the file sizes of shooting in 8K.

The X-H2 offers the same extensive choice of codecs for video capture as its sibling, with a choice of H.264 of H.265 compression with either 4:2:0 or 4:2:2 subsampling and Long-GOP or All-I encoding. In addition, you can capture ProRes 422 HQ, 422, or 422LT files, meaning there should be an option to fit your chosen workflow.

The camera can output a UHD 8K (7680 x 4320) Raw video stream that can be encoded as ProRes RAW if you have an Atomos Ninja V+ recorder, or BRaw if you have a Blackmagic Video Assist.

Of course the move to a slower sensor means the X-H2 can’t match the impressive readout rates of the X-H2S, and there’s been significant rolling shutter visible in the footage we’ve shot so far. The X-H2 includes an F-Log2 option, but it’s likely to offer slightly less usable dynamic range than the X-H2S with its 14-bit readout.

Pixel shift high-resolution mode

Fujifilm already has a pixel-shift high resolution mode in its GFX medium format cameras, but this is its first appearance in a camera with an X-Trans color filter pattern. The less-frequent repeat pattern means that the camera has to take 20 images to get a single pixel sensor movement between each one, but the end result is a set of files that can be combined into a 160MP image using the downloadable ‘Pixel Shift Combiner’ software.

Autofocus

The X-H2 offers the same range of subject recognition autofocus modes as the X-H2S. AF speed may take a hit because the X-H2 can’t read out its sensor as fast as the ‘S’ model, though AF information usually comes from a faster, low-resolution readout, so this may not be a factor.

Face/Eye Animal Car Motorbike & bIke Airplane Birds Trains
  • Humans (incl. wearing glasses and mask)
  • Cat
  • Dog
  • Horse
  • Open-wheel
  • Rally cars
  • Passenger cars
  • Motorbike
  • Bicycles
  • Fighter jet
  • Passenger plane
  • Prop aircraft
  • Birds
  • Trains

As with the X-H2S, the subject recognition modes are entirely distinct from the camera’s face and eye tracking modes, so you’ll need to assign two custom buttons if you want quick access to both. The camera does not return to the previously used mode if you turn face/eye or subject detection on then off.

Assigning a button to engage subject tracking doesn’t give you a way to switch between subject modes; to do that you’ll need to use the Q or main menu. We found the subject recognition modes to generally work well on the X-H2. We look at whether the performance lives up to the standard of the faster-readout X-H2S later in the review.

CFexpress Type B / UHS-II SD

The X-H2 uses the same combination of CFexpress Type B and UHS-II compatible SD card slots as its sibling. As on X-H2S, the CFe slot really comes into its own when shooting video, especially in the data-heavy ProRes formats. The faster format also provides the bandwidth to clear bursts of those 40MP images from the buffer quickly, but a lot of stills shooters will probably get by fine with a fast SD card.

Shutter mechanism

Just in case the X-H2’s high-end status isn’t obvious, Fujifilm stresses that its shutter mechanism, as well as being able to shoot at 1/8000 sec and continuously at up to 15 fps, is also rated to offer a lifespan of 500,000 shots. These are details we’re only used to seeing on high-end pro-focused cameras.

Back to index


How it compares

The high-end APS-C camera is something of a rare beast these days, and indeed to match its resolution would send you to the higher-end full-frame cameras, where you face a rather different balance of image quality, size and cost. There’s currently nothing that tries to shoot 8K footage this side of the Canon EOS R5, whose original list price was nearly twice as high.

Back to index


Body and handling

The body of the X-H2 is identical to that of the X-H2S, with the exception of the model name and ‘S’ badge on the front of the high-speed model. As befits a body that’s likely to make sense for landscape work, it’s one of the best-sealed bodies Fujifilm has yet made.

This means it has the same command-dial-led user interface as the X-H2S, GFX 100S, and 50S II, that gives you a fast at-your-fingertips way of working (one that will be familiar to the users of just about every brand). By default the front dial controls the primary exposure setting and the rear controls exposure comp (with the exception of M mode, where you can configure a button to get Exp Comp when using Auto ISO). You can’t assign other functions to the dials, though, even if you’re using a lens’s aperture ring in preference to a command dial.

The X-H2 uses the same 1.62M-dot fully-articulated touchscreen LCD as the X-H2S, and can also be used with the optional screw-in fan unit (via the five connection points exposed, lower right).

The viewfinder and screens are the same as the X-H2S, with a fully-articulating rear 1.62M-dot touchscreen and large 0.8x mag, 5.76M-dot OLED finder. It’s a huge viewfinder, to the point where it can sometimes be difficult to see the whole display when wearing glasses, despite the relatively generous 24mm eyepoint.

The body has a substantial front grip and ten customizable buttons (with the option of also using the four directions of the four-way controller, plus four swipe directions on the rear screen). The use of single-function command dials, rather than the clickable ones on many previous X-Series cameras, gives a more solid, dependable feel to their operation, and removes the risk of inadvertently clicking into a different mode at a crucial moment. The downside is you can’t assign settings such as ISO to the dials.

The menus are a continuation of those used in recent Fujifilm models and are generally well organized and easy to navigate. There’s a lot going on within them, and it’s certainly worth exploring them when you first pick up the camera, to decide which of the many features you wish to assign to a custom button (there are 73 assignable options in total).

As with other recent Fujifilm cameras, you can customize which functions appear in the camera’s Q menu. The Q menu can be modified to contain between four and sixteen options, with separate menus for stills and video mode and the choice of whether the ‘buttons’ appear on a grey or transparent background.

You can also create up to seven custom settings banks that can then be accessed from the camera’s mode dial. These settings banks capture just about all the camera’s settings when set, with no option to exclude parameters that you might not want to change, so think carefully as you define them.

The level of customization extends to letting you decide what information is shown on the LCD and in the EVF, what appears in the easier-to-read ‘Large Indicator’ mode, and whether that appears in the LCD, EVF, or neither. You can also customize what information the camera’s top panel display shows, with separate settings for stills and video.

Battery

The X-H2 uses the same NP-W235 battery as the X-H2S, X-T4, and some GFX models. It offers a fairly substantial 16Wh capacity and powers the camera to a CIPA battery rating of 680 shots per charge using the rear LCD. This is a very impressive number and suggests the camera is less power-hungry than the X-H2S. A rating this high means that only the most demanding of shoots (such as a wedding) are likely to challenge the capacity of the battery, since it’s common to achieve more than twice the rated number of shots (depending on how you shoot).

The optional VG-XH vertical grip adds capacity for two extra batteries, increasing the battery life 2.4 times to 1,600 shots. If all else fails you can also power the camera directly from a suitably powerful USB-C PD source.

Back to index


Initial impressions

by Richard Butler
Originally published Sept 2022

With the arrival of the X-H2 we can finally clearly see that the ‘H’ really does mean hybrid. It’s not a case of the X-H2S being ‘the video model’ and the X-H2 being ‘the stills model,’ but more a case of the X-H2S being the high-speed option and the X-H2 being the high-resolution one, as both appear similarly adept at stills and video.

The BSI sensor can’t deliver the impressively low rolling shutter rates that the X-H2S can with its stacked chip, but even with significant rolling shutter, the X-H2 is by far the least-expensive ILC to shoot 8K at present. Usefully, it will deliver many of the benefits of that high resolution in its 6.2K and 4K footage if you don’t plan to output at a resolution that most people can’t currently play back.

In our brief time with the camera we found a few little inconveniences (such as the selection of subject recognition modes, and not giving the option of using one of the dials for ISO), but these are things we can hope to be amended with firmware. In the meantime, though, the X-H2 delivers the same fast-to-use, decently customizable interface as the ‘S’ model in a very comfortable, ergonomic body.

Of course, those X-H1 users hoping for an exact repeat of that camera’s control system are likely to be disappointed: the X-H2 uses the same GFX-derived command-dial interface as the X-H2S. Its hybrid credentials also means it gets the same fully-articulating rear display as the S, which may come as a letdown for those hoping for the more stills-orientated tilt screen used on most X-T models (and the original X-H1, for that matter).

If Fujifilm seems to be embracing the more modern, conventional operating style, rather than the throwback one seen elsewhere in the X-series, well, there’s a reason: it’s become the default way most high-end cameras work. And the release of the X-T5 proved that Fujifilm is not about to abandon the dedicated-dial fan club it’s spent a decade cultivating, just because its hybrid line has done so.

We’ve enjoyed our time with the X-H2 so far. It’s a relatively big body for an APS-C camera, but it’s difficult to make a weathersealed camera that has lots of control points, feels solid, fits well in the hand and includes a usefully robust battery much smaller. Witticisms about it being ‘nearly the size of a full-frame camera’ ring hollow when you mount any of the F2 lenses on it. To us it makes sense, given what it’s trying to deliver.

What will be interesting to see is whether it gets usurped by its stablemates, once they get upgraded to the latest generation of processors and sensors. But now that there’s a clear ‘hybrid’ series of cameras in Fuji’s lineup, it can attract buyers on that basis, while freeing Fuji’s X-T line to appeal to its own niche without trying to meet all needs.

Back to index


Image quality

Out of camera JPEG shot using the Velvia Film Simulation.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 125 | 1/2200 sec | F2.8
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

Studio scene

Our test scene is designed to simulate a variety of textures, colors and detail types you’ll encounter in the real world. It also has two illumination modes to see the effect of different lighting conditions.

With a whopping 40 megapixels of BSI goodness, the X-H2 captures an impressive amount of detail for an APS-C camera, besting the 33MP Canon EOS R7 and its nearest sibling, the 26MP X-H2S. At base ISO. Noise levels are similar to the competition, despite its smaller, more densely packed pixels. With a 1/3EV lower base ISO than the X-H2S, the X-H2 also offers a small signal-to-noise advantage over its sibling in ideal shooting conditions.

At higher ISOs, the advantage of a lower-resolution sensor becomes clearer. While the X-H2 looks a little noisier than its Fujifilm sibling, the Raw output is still cleaner than the EOS R7 and surprisingly, the Sony a6600; the same is true at very high ISOs. In terms of high ISO detail, there doesn’t appear to be any advantage or disadvantage to the higher-resolution chip.

Default JPEG color, shot using the Provia-Standard profile, looks punchy and pleasing. Reds aren’t quite as saturated as the competition but Fujifilm greens, blues and yellows all look spot on. Default sharpening at lower ISOs is good, though perhaps not quite as sophisticated as the competition.

At high ISO, Fujifilm’s noise reduction does a pretty good job of balancing smoothing with detail retention. In low-contrast details, there’s a little over-smoothing but the results are still better than the Canon.

Pixel shift mode

Fujifilm specifically says the X-H2’s high-resolution pixel shift mode is intended for static scenes. So while there is plenty of impressive detail here, there are also unsightly artifacts in areas like the foliage due to wind and in the streets from passing vehicles.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 125 | 1/3000 sec | F2.8
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

You’ll need to tripod-mount the X-H2 to make the most of its pixel-shift high-resolution mode, which captures 20 frames for a 160MP final image. We also recommend using the self-timer to avoid camera movement. The menus allow you to choose how much time elapses between each shot; choices include ‘Short,’ 1 sec, 2 sec, 5 sec, and 15 sec. For the vast majority of scenes, we’d opt for Short.

This mode creates 20 Raw files which will need to be combined on a computer using PixelShift Combiner. This program is quick to download and reasonably straightforward to use. Simply select the images you wish to combine and let it do its thing. The whole process involves a couple of clicks and takes about one minute to create one high-res shot. The resulting file is a DNG roughly 650MB in size.

Dynamic range

Our dynamic range tests examine how much read noise a sensor is adding, to see how flexible Raw files are. When it comes to the X-H2, you can expect very little read noise and lots of flexibility in post.

Our ISO invariance test looks at how much read noise there is, that can be overcome by raising the ISO setting. Despite having a dual conversion gain sensor, there’s only a slight improvement to be had: much less than the stacked chip of the X-H2S, because the X-H2’s base ISO performance is already so good.

This gives the option to essentially lock your ISO at its base of 125, shoot whatever aperture and shutter speed settings you please, and increase the brightness of the Raw file later, without adding much noticeable electronic noise. For example, an ISO 125 image increased by 4.7EV looks only slightly noisier than a ‘properly’ exposed ISO 3200 shot. Use ISO 500, where the second gain step becomes active, and there’ll be essentially no noise penalty, but with additional highlight capture for every stop of ISO you chose to forego.

Edited to taste in ACR.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 125 | 1/1250 sec | F1.4
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

Our X-H2 exposure latitude test takes at a slightly different approach, testing how much you can reduce the exposure, in this case using the shutter speed, to maintain highlights, then pull the shadows in post. The reduced exposure increases the noise, but we can compare to other APS-C cameras to see how much additional noise the camera is adding. The X-H2 results are on par with some of the best APS-C sensors we’ve tested and a step up from the X-H2S, which prioritizes speed over dynamic range.

This knowledge is especially handy for landscape photographers looking to preserve sunset or sunrise highlights.

Back to index


Autofocus

Eyes = detected. Out of camera JPEG captured using a pre-production X-H2 and the Acros Film Simulation.

Fujifilm XF 56mm F1.2 R WR| ISO 125 | 1/250 sec | F1.8
Photo: Jordan Drake

The X-H2 uses a similar autofocus system to its sister camera, the X-H2S. For AF tracking purposes it doesn’t sample its sensor nearly as often as its sibling. But then again it’s also not capable of shooting full-sensor 40 fps bursts with AF (albeit with limited success).

Despite the slower sample rate, the X-H2’s various tracking modes work with good reliability and decent precision.

AF performance

Given the X-H2’s focus on resolution and detail capture, we field-tested the camera in likely use cases, including landscape and portrait photography as well as street and travel photography. Regardless of our subject or shooting scenario, we opted to stick with one of three AF modes: Face/Eye Detect, Animal Detect or standard AF tracking.

Face/eye detection works well, even in moderate to low lighting. That said, a peek at 100% shows the focus just a smidge off from the eye. Out of camera JPEG.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 320 | 1/500 sec | F1.4
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

Face/eye detection on the X-H2 works well. In most instances, the tracking box sticks to the intended subject. And as long as they aren’t dancing a jig or thrashing about, locking focus on or close to the eye is well within this camera’s abilities. That said, your performance will vary depending on which lens you use and how dim the lighting conditions are.

Most users will find the camera’s output in this mode more than sharp enough. However, discerning pixel peepers, eager to make use of all forty million pixels, may not. From our field testing roughly 15–25% of images were on the soft side at the pixel level. However, when we say ‘soft,’ we mean ever so slightly mis-focused (this system rarely flat-out misses). Distractions like glasses and bangs/fringes seem to be this mode’s kryptonite (see image above).

Animal detection works quite well. Just be sure to crank up that shutter speed to freeze the action. Lightly edited and cropped-in in Adobe Camera Raw.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 320 | 1/500 sec | F1.4
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

Of the subject-specific modes, Animal Detect got the most action in our tests and proved extremely capable. Perhaps big ol’ puppy dog eyes are just easier to focus on than human eyes. But the X-H2 had zero issues sticking to the face of one very rambunctious pup.

Standard tracking AF, that isn’t trying to recognize the subject, is also sticky and works reliably well, assuming you get a good lock on your subject from the start. However, this AF option is still frustratingly not available when shooting video, something we’re hopeful can be addressed with firmware.

AF performance from the X-H2 is adequate by today’s standards. But there are more reliable platforms that require less futzing with AF controls and modes. Out of camera JPEG.

Fujifilm XF 56mm F1.2 R WR| ISO 125 | 1/5000 sec | F1.2
Photo: Jordan Drake

It’s also worth noting that while Fujifilm has made great strides in the AF department, if you want the absolute best AF performance, especially when it comes to tracking subjects, cameras like the Canon EOS R7 and the four-year-old the Sony a6600 still have the X-H2 beat.

Back to index


Video

Video quality

As expected, 8K footage looks really impressive, with lots of lovely detail wherever you look in the scene. It doesn’t match the level of detail captured by the likes of the Canon EOS R5 shooting 8K, but the results are darn good for a $2000 body. 6.2K also looks quite good.

In 4K HQ mode, the X-H2 capture is similarly detailed to that of the X-H2S as well as the Sony a6600, putting it on par with the best of APS-C. That said, 4K/60p on the X-H2 can’t hold a candle to that of the X-H2S, which makes sense given the former’s need to use a 1.14x crop in this mode.

Of course, our video widget is only telling part of the story when it comes to video quality. Sensor readout speed also plays a large role in video performance. The faster the readout, the less likely you are to notice rolling shutter distortion.

Crops and rolling shutter timings (16:9, UHD modes)
Fujifilm X-H2 Fujifilm X-T5
8K Full width / 31.3ms
6.2K Full width / 31.3ms 1.23x (native) crop / 25.2ms
4K (HQ) Full width / 31.3ms 1.23x crop / 25.2ms
4K/60p (sub-sampled) 1.14x crop / 13.7ms 1.14x crop / 13.7ms
4K (sub-sampled) Full width / 15.5ms Full width / 15.5ms

Unfortunately, regardless of which full-width video capture mode you choose, the X-H2 is taking 31.3ms to read the sensor. That might sound pretty fast but it’s not quite quick enough to avoid exhibiting the dreaded jello effect or other rolling shutter uglies. By comparison, the X-H2S is reading its sensor every 6.2ms in 6.2K mode, resulting in almost no rolling shutter.

Now, these results are not to say that the X-H2’s most detailed video modes aren’t usable. They’re just best used for mostly static shots and scenes, like interviews.

Video IS

No stabilization rig or tripod? No problem. Fujifilm has stepped up its IS game, and recent models like the X-H2 are more stable than ever.

Even with a non-IS lens, you can easily film steady hand-held footage. And for long, static hand-held shots, the camera’s ‘IS Boost Mode’ does a particularly good job of imitating a tripod. That said, panning and walking with the camera present a bit more of a challenge for the IBIS system, and it will occasionally fight intended movements. Still, while not as steady or intelligent a platform as what OMDS or Panasonic offer, Fujifilm has made a lot of progress on the stability front, and it really shows in video mode. The tendency to dramatically snap back to the IS’s central position appears to have been reined in.

Video AF

There’s no non-recognition AF tracking mode in video, but you can use face/eye detection as well as any of the subject-specific AF tracking modes, assuming your subject is a person, animal or some sort of vehicle.

Face/eye and animal detection both work exceptionally well in scenes with one individual, with smooth focus transitions and minimal hunting when a subject does move. Of course, video AF performance on this camera is very lens dependent.

In scenes with more than one individual, face/eye detection tends to stay faithful to the initial subject selected – until the person turns around, at which point the camera will almost certainly shift its attention to the next most prominent face in the scene. Even if/when the original subject faces the camera again, focus will remain fixated on the new face and require user intervention (i.e., tapping the screen) to return to the initial subject. This is a disappointment, especially compared to the human detection AF of other recent cameras that knows to stick to the originally-chosen subject.

Back to index


Conclusion

By Dan Bracaglia

Image stabilization works well on the X-H2. This image was shot hand-held at 1/2 sec using a non-stabilized 35mm equiv. lens. Out of camera JPEG.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 250 | 1/2 sec | F1.4
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

What we like What we don’t
  • Excellent high-resolution image quality with a wide range of JPEG processing options
  • Excellent Raw dynamic range
  • 160MP high-res mode for static scenes
  • 15 fps mechanical shutter with good buffer depth
  • Highly detailed 8K video with no crop
  • Wide array of video resolutions, framerates and codecs
  • Subject-specific AF tracking modes
  • EVF is bright and highly-detailed
  • Effective in-body IS easily allows for handheld video and slow shutter speed stills
  • Comfortable hand grip with well-positioned controls
  • Impressive build quality
  • Shutter rated to 500K
  • Very good battery life
  • Tracking AF and face/eye detect AF reliability lags slightly behind the competition
  • Noticeable rolling shutter in most video capture modes, especially 8K
  • No general AF tracking option in video mode
  • Face detection in AF can be distracted by other faces in the scene
  • High-res mode requires a trip to your computer for assembly
  • Poor magnified live view experience
  • Command dial interface won’t suit all users
  • Not all XF lenses will deliver full promise of 40MP sensor

If you want the highest resolution APS-C camera in 2023, you have two choices: the Fujifilm X-H2 or the Fujifilm X-T5. Both sport 40MP sensors but only the former is billed as a truly hybrid stills and video camera capable of full-sensor 8K capture. In fact, as of publishing, the X-H2 is almost certainly the best 8K camera under $2k.

It shares the same chassis, ergonomically-friendly design, and impressive build quality as the brand’s other hybrid flagship, the X-H2S. Larger than your average APS-C mirrorless models, these are cameras that handle more like pro-level tools than enthusiast companions.

The X-H2 is almost certainly the best 8K camera under $2k

Where the ‘S’ is speed-focused, capable of 40 fps bursts (with AF) and outstanding 4K video (with minimal rolling shutter), the X-H2 prioritizes its higher resolution and detail (though it can still shoot at up to 15 fps). With a base ISO of 125 – compared to 160 on most other recent XF models – it also offers a signal-to-noise and dynamic range benefit. However, due to its smaller pixels, the sensor can be a tad noisier at very high ISOs (nothing your favorite Raw processor can’t handle, though).

Our-of-camera JPEG.

Fujifilm XF 35mm F2 | ISO 2000 | 1/125 sec | F2
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

In addition to producing 40MP still images, if you break out a tripod the X-H2 can generate 160MP photos using a 20-shot high-res mode. Assembling said image does require a trip to your computer and Fujifilm’s free software. The results are definitely worth the effort, at least for static scenes; poor motion correction leaves them vulnerable to artifacts from moving subjects.

It’s a similar story for 8K and 6.2K videos: stick to scenes with limited motion. While the quality of the detail in these modes is impressive, the X-H2 simply can’t read out its whopping sensor fast enough to deal with rapid movement or panning. The rolling shutter effect is just too noticeable/nauseating. That said, for documentary-style capture or interviews, rolling shutter shouldn’t be too prominent.

An out-of-camera JPEG showing off those lovely Fujifilm colors.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 8000 | 1/125 sec | F1.4
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

Autofocus performance is quite good, though Fujifilm is still playing catch-up to the likes of Sony and Canon when it comes to AF tracking and precise face/eye detection. It’s not that the X-H2 struggles in any way to find and stick to faces and eyes, it’s just that the other brands do it so darn well: they know to stick to their subjects even if they turn away, and aren’t as often nudged off target by eyelashes, glasses or bangs. That said, compared to even two-year-old Fujifilm models, the latest flagships represent a noticeable and welcome step forward in focus reliability.

Ultimately, the X-H2 is an immensely impressive flagship camera on its own. But it doesn’t exist in a vacuum, and given all that the X-H2S and X-T5 offer, we can’t help but feel that the target audience for this camera is rather small. Sure, it shoots full-width 8K video for under $2K, but the footage is really only usable in select use cases. For most folks, the X-H2S is going to be the more sensible video rig. On the stills side, the X-H2 is no more capable than the X-T5, just pricier. While it’s better suited for large hands and sports a nicer viewfinder, are those upgrades worth $300? That’s entirely up to you.

Lightly edited and cropped-in in Adobe Camera Raw.

Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R LM WR | ISO 125 | 1/250 sec | F1.4
Photo: Dan Bracaglia

Scoring

Scoring is relative only to the other cameras in the same category. Click here to learn about what these numbers mean.

Fujifilm X-H2
Category: Semi-professional Interchangeable Lens Camera / DSLR
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Features
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality (raw)
Image quality (jpeg)
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Performance
Movie / video mode
Connectivity
Value
PoorExcellent
Conclusion
The Fujifilm X-H2 is the brand’s first model to make the jump to 40MP, the highest-resolution APS-C sensor to date. Image quality is class-leading, while the build quality and ergonomics are nothing short of pro-level. Full-sensor 8K video is highly-detailed, though quite prone to the effects of rolling shutter, limiting its use to mostly static scenes. And Autofocus performance is generally good, even if there’s some room for improvement compared to the competition.
Good for
Landscape, studio, and portrait shooters who want the highest possible resolution APS-C camera available. Documentary filmmakers shooting static scenes.
Not so good for
Video scenes with movement or panning. Those who don’t need 8K video.
89%
Overall score

Compared to its peers:

The nearest competitor to the X-H2 is its resolution sibling, the Fujifilm X-T5. If you don’t care about the 8K video, you’ll be pleased to know you can save a couple hundred bucks by going with the latter. It doesn’t sport quite as lovely of an EVF, nor does it offer as much buffer depth for stills. But it is decidedly more svelte, features a more flexible articulating screen, and has a dedicated dial control system that is easy to love.

The next-highest-resolution APS-C mirrorless body is the 33MP Canon EOS R7. Priced $500 less than the Fujifilm, it’s very much an enthusiast-level camera, i.e., suited for a different audience than Fujifilm. While the X-H2 is highly customizable and decked out with lots of ergonomic niceties, the Canon focuses more on simplicity and ease of use. It has no 8K video to speak of and no high-res mode, but its 15 fps shooting makes it a credible rival, if the lenses you want are available for it.

The Sony a6600 also falls into similar territory as the R7: it can’t match the build quality or ergonomics of the Fujifilm, nor can it match its resolution in stills or video mode. But it is an easier camera to set and forget, and also sports the best AF system of the bunch.


Sample gallery

Please do not reproduce any of these images on a website or any newsletter/magazine without prior permission (see our copyright page). We make the originals available for private users to download to their own machines for personal examination or printing (in conjunction with this review); we do so in good faith, so please don’t abuse it.

Pre-production X-H2 sample gallery

All images shot using a pre-production Fujifilm X-H2.

Back to index


Author:
Dan Bracaglia, Richard Butler
Source: Dpreview

Related posts
CryptoNews

Hedge Funds Adopt Net Short Positions on BTC and ETH Futures, Kaiko Analysis Reveals – Finance Bitcoin News

CryptoNews

Deadline Looms for Biden to Veto Congressional Overturn of SEC's Crypto Rules – Regulation Bitcoin News

CryptoNews

Justin Sun Advocates Supporting a Crypto-Friendly U.S. Presidential Candidate – News Bytes Bitcoin News

AI & RoboticsNews

McKesson, Merck back Atropos Health’s $33M round to accelerate drug development with AI

Sign up for our Newsletter and
stay informed!