Why I like the new Fujifilm X-Pro3 a lot, and probably won’t get one

If you haven’t seen the ‘development’ announcement from Fujifilm (see about 1:10 for the camera itself), the new flagship X-Pro3 has a few quirks. Most of us probably expected to see an X-Pro2 body with the internals from the X-T3 and a tweak or two to the button placements. Similar body, higher specs - that seems the way of most new cameras. So what have Fuji done? What are they thinking?! No rear screen, other than to show a few settings, until you flip it down?

I get the thinking process, initially to remove the rear screen. Simplify, and encourage use of the viewfinder. Take the whole retro thing a big step further and make it more like a 35mm film camera. Viewfinder only, like the Leica M10-D.

But maybe that felt like too big a step, hence the idea to have an always-on screen for settings, then actually include an lcd after all but only when you open it.

What I like most is that Fuji is trying something new, even if it is a replication of something old. It’s a bold move on a flagship camera. It’s got people thinking, even if many of the initial reactions are somewhat negative. After the initial surprise, I think it has many wondering actually what it will be like to shoot with and I can imagine it being a real joy to shoot with.

The other main news is the use of titanium. I do like titanium. I used to ride mountain bikes when the most expensive dream bikes were all titanium. Lighter than steel without the harsh rigidity of fat-framed aluminum bikes. And no corrosion. So a titanium Fuji? Yes, please!

With a new film simulation too and uprated specs, the X-Pro3 looks and sounds beautiful. I'm sad that it's not as pure and simple as it could have been. They have removed the d-pad but otherwise it has more complication with the dual screens than the X-Pro2. The X-Pro line is more niche than the X-T cameras, so that allows room for innovation, but it's still a brave move. I'd happily trade in my X-T3, except..

Except that I assume that the viewfinder is the same size and magnification as the X-Pro2. Which I couldn’t get on with, sadly. I might be wrong, the X-Pro3 definitely has a new viewfinder with increased resolution, so maybe the design will be more friendly to those of us wearing glasses. I’ll definitely try one, but I’m guessing that the X-Pro3 viewfinder won’t work for me. If you love the viewfinder and the price isn't too high (I'm guessing it could easily be $2k though), the Pro3 should be a great camera. Or check for upcoming deals on the X-Pro2 for more of bargain.


I'd love to see the X100F replacement in titanium when it arrives sometime next year.




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Headshot, portrait, street and documentary photographer in NYC and Jersey City

alastair.arthur@gmail.com

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