Here at Average Joes we love photography. Not just for the site but we do it for fun too. So when Fujifilm asked if we’d like to try their flagship prosumer camera, we said yes please!
In a post from last year, I stated that Fujifilm had helped me to love photography again after purchasing an X-T3. At the time I deliberated about whether I should spend a little more and buy the newer X-T4 but I went with the slightly older and cheaper model. As a result of that article, Fujifilm asked if I would like to try the X-T4 with the new 18mm f1.4 lens. I gladly obliged.
The Fujifilm X-T4 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera that packs way more than its price would suggest. It features a 26 megapixel APS-C sensor and can shoot 4K video at up to 60fps and HD video up to 240fps. With the exception of the 240fps video (the X-T3 tops out at 120fps), the X-T4 is mostly the same on paper as my X-T3 but there are a few crucial changes under the hood. The newer camera features a much larger battery and in-body image stabilisation (IBIS) as well as a flip out screen and a mildly revised body design.
For many, these additional features might not warrant the additional cost. They certainly didn’t for me when I bought mine in late 2020. But after a year of heavy use, I was starting to wonder if I had made the right choice. The battery life on the X-T3 wasn’t great for video and my handheld footage was unusable at times. The photos on the other hand were and are superb. The Fuji range of cameras just has something about them that most other camera makers can’t touch. The X-T4 brings nothing new to the party here but that’s no bad thing. The only real difference I noticed when taking photos is that the X-T4 now features a dedicated photo/video switch that keeps the settings separate. This means that you can be shooting video and quickly grab a few stills and go straight back to shooting video without having to check (or forget in my case) if you’ve got the right shutter/aperture/ISO settings.
The addition of a flip out screen has been a welcome addition for some and something that puts others off. Personally I like it and it means that it opens the camera up to the vloggers of the world. It adds a level of flexibility for the solo shooter. It’s also much high resolution than the X-T3 so everything looks better on the screen. Chimping has never felt so good! But if you are a photo-only shooter then the flip-out screen might irk you. You might not get the benefit of the IBIS either. Of course it adds stability for lenses that don’t have their own optical image stabilisation and adds to the ones that do but it’s in video where it really shines. It allowed me to be more ‘run-and-gun’ with my shooting and also means I can leave the bulky gimbal at home for some shoots.
Overall the X-T4 isn’t a game-changer but it does offer a decent improvement over the older X-T3. It isn’t for everyone and that’s why Fuji still sell the X-T3. If you only take photos and have no interest in video then the X-T3 is a far better value proposition. But if you’re like me and you regularly shoot both video ands stills then the X-T4 is the one for you. As a result of my time with the X-T4, I decided to add one to my kit. It hasn’t replaced the X-T3 but it will definitely complement it.
Fujifilm 18mm f1.4 R WR LM
Fuji also sent their new 18mm f1.4 prime lens with the X-T4 for me to try. This is a lens for someone who wants the best possible quality wide angle in the Fujifilm line-up. It’s been designed for the next generation of higher resolution cameras so it has to be optically better than anything that Fuji has made before in this focal length. It also features the latest and fastest auto focus motors which has always been one of Fujifilm’s weaker areas.
I instantly fell in love with this lens. It’s so sharp, even at the widest aperture and it features such creamy pleasing bokeh (the out of focus parts of the image). It’s small, light and everything falls nicely into the hand. I used it for a mix of photography and video and it handled both with ease.
It’s a lens that will definitely join my arsenal at some point and could provide Fuji photographers with a great alternative to the excellent 16mm f1.4 that just isn’t up to modern standards when it comes to focusing. The 18mm should also be well suited to Fuji’s future cameras that will no doubt pack more tech and higher resolutions.