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Is the Fujifilm GFX 50S II Enough Reason to Forget Full Frame?

Fujifilm has confirmed on several occasions that it has no intention of producing a full frame camera. What Fujifilm has done instead is produce some of the best APS-C and medium format cameras. The most remarkable thing Fujifilm accomplished was to bring down the overall price of medium format cameras. The GFX 50 series of cameras are the most notable.

The Fujifilm GFX 50S II is the latest medium format camera from the company. Although it continues with the same sensor and retains the contrast-detect autofocus system, the update and price point make it an enticing option. Features such as the in-body image stabilization, pixel shift, and improved autofocus could be enough for some, especially when you consider its price.

At $3,999, the GFX 50S II sits comfortably among several high-end full frame cameras. If image quality is a strict concern, then it's pretty difficult to find better value for money. 

A recent video from Kai Wong discusses some of the improvements in the new Fujifilm GFX 50S II. The improvements to autofocus seem to stand out the most. Despite it being contrast detect, Wong discusses how it's much snappier, making it more effective for a wider range of photography. 

Of course, full frame cameras still hold advantages over medium format cameras. However, as Fujifilm continues to develop the sector, it may become more prudent to purchase a medium format system instead of full frame. 

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7 Comments

00rob00 Rob00Rob's picture

To use a AD video for answering such a question?..... Surely you jest

Petr Svitil's picture

I'm unable to view the video, but does Kai compare the files to a FF camera? How does the old sensor compare to a modern FF sensor in terms of low light performance and AF?

Christian Fiore's picture

It's similar to 3 year old FF of similar res in IQ, and AF is like a P&S from 2000. CDAF only. Remember that this is once again reusing a sensor from 2014 to get the price so low. No free lunches.

dale clark's picture

I'm thinking of jumping into Medium format Fuji (or one of the smaller Hasselblads). I'm curious if they have a medium or small raw setting for smaller file sizes when full resolution is not needed.

Steven Lang's picture

Full-Fame is a marketing term made-up by Canon. Phase One has stolen this idea using the phrase "Full-Frame Medium Format". "Crop Sensor" is a nonsense! My general rule of thumb: The sensor in Fujifilm GFX 50S ii is from 2016 but produces a better photograph than any 35mm digital camera. Phase One and hasselblad H6D produce better photographs than the smaller medium format cameras from Pentax, Leica, Hasselblad, and Fujifilm. Micro 4/3 are better for long reach, birding, wildlife, and field sport especially in good conditions. Digital 35mm are better for wide angle, and macro, and indoor sport. APS-C/ APS- H/ Super 35 are considered the sweet spot between digital 35mm and Micro 4/3. Smart phones with large phone sensors, good AI, TOF, and powerful processors are a good alternative in good conditions, and ready to shoot at anytime. None are better or worse it depends on what you need the camera for. In the end the best processor is the one between your ears. The best lenses are your eyes. Your creativity is more important than the gear you have. Your memory of places, conditions (atmosphere), and previous successful shots are vital. Then the lens; probably the most important part of your kit. Now go out and take lots of photographs!

Christian Fiore's picture

Not better than recent FF:

https://www.dpreview.com/reviews/image-comparison/fullscreen?attr18=lowl...

https://www.dpreview.com/reviews/image-comparison/fullscreen?attr144_0=f...

Also, the sensor is from the 2014 Pentax 645Z. You get what you pay for, and this is bargain basement.

David Vivian's picture

The noise of the GFX images looks superior to the others at iso 12,800.