top of page

Fujifilm GFX 50R / X100VI Comparison

As I check daily to see if there's any news of my pre-ordered Fujifilm X100VI, the anticipation has become a "nail biter". Seeing that I am of the "elite few" (you know, one of the half a million or so elites) who got on the list the day of the release, I have to remind myself that the new camera isn't my full-time camera so my nails can survive the wait. Honestly, it's hard for me to call any of my cameras "full-time". I have the incredible privilege of being a professional photographer, filmmaker, and creator with a substantial inventory of gear that I've collected over the years.

Obviously, the Fujifilm X100VI is a highly anticipated camera with impressive specs. Is this camera right for you? In my opinion, yes. The Fujifilm X100VI is going to be a fantastic choice for the hobbiest, amateur, and professional photographer for a variety of reasons. At this point, I'm hoping for a June arrival for the new camera. In the interim I won't be slowing down production or saving any projects specifically for the X100VI, far from it. I'll create a deep dive article of the Fujifilm X100VI once I get my hands on my own, so stay tuned.

This article is really about patience and appreciating the gear you have, rather than lusting about the have nots. There are cameras that are cheaper, have impressive specs of their own, and most importantly, you can get your hands on them. The waiting has actually inspired me to rotate out my cameras more I love so much. Let's face it. Gear is fun, new gear is wonderful, and collecting/trading/selling cameras is certainly a passtime I enjoy, I just don't let the gear rule me. Hell, I use my Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra all the time to grab shots and have integrated it even into some of my professional methodology. Because: First and foremost get the shot.

It's become much more important to me to also enjoy the process of making an image. I do my best to achieve this whenever I'm shooting, and it has taken a long while for me to get to this point. I disagree with the notion "gear is not important". Gear is vitally important and that's why you're here.

The Fujifilm GFX 50R is one great camera. If you can get your hands on one I recommend it to anyone who is looking for a crossover camera of sorts. While it isn't the fastest on the market, it wasn't intended to be. It's impressive Fujifilm installed a huge sensor into a relatively compact body. Quite honestly it might be my favorite camera. Word to the wise, I also have huge hands. I was taught using film originally, so I am used to heavier cameras handheld, manual focus, etc. While it's a good camera for myself, I can see the GFX 50R being a big brick in the wrong hands.

Images of the Fujifilm GFX 50R

Is the GFX 50R fast? It's fast for what it is. Make no mistake, Sony autofocus and really any other manufacturers autofocus is superior. I've also seen plenty of comparisons of achieving a "medium format look" with a full frame sensor, much like I've seen comparisons of APS-C sensors looking like full frame.

If you have the tech, skillset, and time you can make a lot happen and make it look fantastic.

So why the Fujifilm GFX 50R? To simply put it, inspiration.

I find myself wanting to shoot the GFX 50R more because the experience is enjoyable.

Having the dials exposed is satisfying and speeds up the process when I wasnt to change settings for different looks when shooting in the same environment. The rangefinder style is also functional. Having the EVF shifted over to the left side of the body frees up my left eye to anticipate a subject coming into frame and gives me spacial awareness. Plus I can be greasy and I get tired of wiping grease off the screen.

The camera captures spectacular color and black & white images. When I was shooting film 100% I prefered Fujifilm.

Fujifilm has a unique holistic lineage. The company manufactures cameras, lenses, and film. Not many companies have this advantage. Fujifilm is able to use it's knowledge of making emulsion and engineer film simulations that are surprisingly similar. I still shoot RAW and having a baked in look is a great addition. The cameras EVF also changes to the simulation and aspect ratio you choose, for example when you change your settings to monochrome, the EVF is monochrome. This is also a really nice feature.

The camera is an all around great camera, feeling robust the hand with top notch optics. The GFX 50R is also discontinued, giving you the only option to buy used. The lenses are also expensive, so the price point can be prohibitive to a large part of the market.

This is where X100 series comes in. I owned an X100F and loved the formfactor, although there were a couple of quirks where I would find myself not staying present in the moment and rather fiddling or fretting over the camera. It's a great camera and I got shots I'm proud of, it just wasn't for me. With the refinement of the X100V, my ears were certainly perked, but with all the hype came inflated prices and I simply didn't pop on one due to me prioritizing other pieces of kit.

So here I sit. Waiting. What's with all the hype of the X100V and now the X100VI? Personally, I'm really excited about the OVF (optical viewfinder). Being a cinematographer and photographer, I have looked through many EVFs and OVFs of digital and film cameras over the years, and it's hard to beat seeing the world as closely as you can to reality. EVFs have come a long way and continue to get better, OVFs are just a preference of mine, if I have a choice. It's a nice feature of the X100 series that you have the best of both worlds with an OVF and EVF. 40.2 Megapixel is also exciting, producing a just shy of an 8k image. Large prints, small prints, cropping, you really get it all while having an equivalent 35mm f2.8 (ish) lens. IBIS is great and I'm sure I'll appreciate it when I need it, but I shoot a lot of personal projects with shutter drag, so bring on the blur in my opinion.

What I am most excited about is portability. The way I see it, the Fujifilm X100VI will be the perfect EDC camera for me. It's lightweight with robust capabilities in photography AND video. I don't see it as a main camera to shoot video, but I don't rule out the specs at all and I look forward to seeing how it performs, but to me it's a still camera with video capabilities. Not the other way around.

Bottomline with all of this: enjoy the process. I'll continue to use my film cameras, my Sony's, and my GFX 50R. I look forward to seeing how the X100VI will influence my day to day.

In the meantime I will enjoy using the gear I have, appreciate the gear I have and stay excited about the "cousin" to the GFX 50R.

Cheers and onward!


bottom of page