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Fuji Officially Releases First Digital Medium Format Camera | GFX 50s

By Marlon Richardson on September 19th 2016

As rumored and speculated endlessly these past weeks, Fujifilm is getting back into medium format with its first medium format digital camera: The GF 50S. It’s worth noting that Fujifilm created an all new “G mount” that will eventually include zooms to go along with high-quality prime lenses. The G Mount has a short flange back-distance of just 26.7mm to shorten the back-focus distance as much as possible, as well as preventing vignetting and improving edge-to-edge sharpness.

  • First GF lens: GF63/f/2.8 R WR, early 2017
  • First GF zoom: GF 32-64 f/4 R LM WR
  • First macro lens: 120mm f/4
    (All available at launch)


Three lenses to follow in 2017:

  • 45mm f/2.8
  • 32mm f/4
  • 100mm f/2

Price wise, Fujifilm hasn’t announced a list price just yet but at their morning Photokina presentation Fujifilm says its target price for the GF 50S with 63mm standard prime will be ‘well below 10K’.

Fujifilm GFX 50S Key Features:

  • 51.4MP Medium Format 43.8 x 32.9mm sensor (same as Pentax 645Z and Hasselblad X1D)
  • World’s first medium format camera with focal plane shutter, eliminating the need for each lens to have a central shutter built into it. Although max shutter speed is 1/4000th second, that could increase to 1/8000th second

  • Can be adapted to various aspect ratios, including 4:3 (default), 3:2, 1:1, 4:5, 6:7 and 6:17
  • Fujifilm “G Mount” with short flange back distance of just 26.7mm
  • “X-Processor Pro” imaging processor
  • Detachable electronic viewfinder, a slot-in accessory will allow the EVF to be tilted and rotated.
  • Weather and dust resistant; operates as low as 14 degrees Fahrenheit \ -10 degrees Celsius

fujifilm-medium-format-gfx-5 fujifilm-medium-format-gfx-4

This doesn’t appear to be a less expensive version of the upcoming Hasselblad X1D, or a less expensive option for medium-format. Instead of just being most pros’ favorite ‘other system to carry’, Fujifilm is making moves to offer a complete solution for commercial and portrait photographers with the new GFX line. Fujifilm is attacking the medium-format market hard with a light weight serious contender taking aim at Phase One, Pentax, and Hasselblad. The Fujifilm GFX 50S and six Fujinon GF Lenses that will be introduced sequentially in early 2017.

Additional Features

The new FUJINON lenses will feature an aperture ring, a popular feature in the X Series, and have a new C (Command) Position on the ring to enable aperture adjustments with the Command Dial on the camera body. Each lens will be dust and weather resistant, built to withstand operation at temperatures as low as 14 degrees Fahrenheit \ -10 degrees Celsius allowing photographers to take them outdoors with confidence in challenging weather conditions.

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Marlon is a South Florida-based wedding and portrait photographer, writer, and interactive designer. Involved in photography since the 90’s, his background began with repairing film cameras from a master Vietnam veteran, followed by years of assisting professional photographers then before starting his own business in 2006. Marlon at his heart is a tinkerer that has love for and adept in every medium of photography.

When not working Marlon is all about spending time with his wife, Naomi and two boys, Taze and Brassaï.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Stan Rogers

    All of the current MF cameras, with the exception of Hasselblad, are focal-plane-shutter cameras. Pentax doesn’t even have current-issue leaf shutter lenses available.

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  2. Emilio Savov

    Amazing camera, I love Fuji and their work…. but …. watch out for the edges of this camera … make sure you don’t cut yourself .. :( … the design is not so dreamy! Other than that … Go Fuji!!!

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  3. Marcello Rostagni

    Does anyone know if leaf shutter options can be added for this camera? I know other MF cameras have a manual switch to disable the focal plane shutter and allow leaf shutter lenses, I hope Fuji does the same.

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  4. Pye Jirsa

    This looks super interesting, can’t wait to see the files it produces.

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  5. William Irwin

    The Fujifilm GFX50S seems to be an offering at the level of Hasselblad 1XD or Pentax 645Z level. It won’t compete with the higher level larger sensor offerings from Phase One or Hasseblad’s upper level lineup. I don’t think its meant to.

    This seems to be more inline with those looking for commericial work, Fashion and even Weddings. I could see wedding photographers shooting everything up to the ceremony and reception (which some hybrid shooters are already doing now). This allows you to pitch more wall art sales with exquisite quality photos.

    From my readings you will get a camera and a lens for about the same price or less than Hasselblad. Plus you will see 6 lenses. Pentax 645Z is competitive but their weak point is expensive lenses. I would expect Fuji will deliver on the 6 lenses they list and the prices will be very competitive.

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    • Marlon Richardson

      Phase One also uses the same 50MP option on a back. Why? It’s the only sensor that offers really good low light performance for medium format.

      So far Phase One, Pentax, Hasselblad (in two cameras), and now Fuji are using the same medium format sensor by Sony.

      For Phase One, I believe it’s one of their top two sellers and the least expensive kit option. Commercial photographers of all kinds are buying up this sensor. It’s overall the best selling medium format sensor on the planet right now. Make no mistake, Fujifilm is trying to shift buyers from anyone who sells medium format.

      High megapixel options in 35mm full-frame already exceed the needs of wedding photographers for enlargements and details brought to you by Sony with the a7rII, D810, and Pentax K1.

      Pentax looks to remain the least expensive option to get into digital medium format. The Fuji seems like it’ll be in $6k – $$8k range with the lenses being appropriately priced to boot.

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    • Stephen Jennings

      I don’t think anyone would upgrade to a medium format just for resolution and detail – you do it for the appearance of a medium format sensor. Just as you would see from an aps-c to 35mm. I think it’s awesome they are making cheaper and much more compact medium format cameras .. but this still isn’t phaseone level. The phaseOne XF100 is 101mp, with a 53.7×40.2mm sensor .. this Fuji is 43.8 x 32.9mm .. that’s a significant difference. That makes the XF100 2.5x larger than a full frame. So this medium format camera will not look like phaseone medium format, they are entirely different sensor sizes. It’s like comparing crop sensor and fullframe. And price points.. I don’t think anyone interested in a $50k camera and a few insanely expensive lenses is going to decided meh, think I’ll save $40k and get a Fuji. There might be some jumping up from 35mm, but they’re not going to see the dramatic difference in images as they would from 35mm to a larger medium format like the XF100.

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  6. Kim Bentsen

    Hasselblad XQD? It is Hasselblad X1D or Sony XQD. Read the article after writing it.

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    • Marlon Richardson

      Good catch! We have to get these type articles out fast on release days. Sometimes we unintentionally make minor errors.

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  7. Jean-Francois Perreault

    “This doesn’t appear to be a less expensive version of the upcoming Hasselblad X1D,”

    I think it’ll be a bit less expansive as the Fuji will come with an EVF + the 63mm lens for “well below 10k” (as they said…).
    I think the X1D is 9k body-only.

    I need 4 of those but I can only afford 3 so I’ll stick with my X-T1 for a while ;)

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