Fujifilm X Summit Announcements

Fujifilm's camera strategy still seems somewhat suspect to me. They appear to undercut themselves for no clear reason. Today's new cameras introduced at the Fujifilm X Summit in Sydney, Australia are excellent examples of that. 

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The new X-T50 replaces the X-T30, and basically is an all-new body with much of the X-T5's specs, including the 40mp sensor. The primary difference in the higher model lies in the Rear LCD adjustability, the higher resolution EVF, the larger battery, ability to use battery grips and fan accessories, and the inclusion of second card slot. Given the US$300 price differential, the changes in the X-T5 might not seem worth the money the some. In essence, the X-T50 undercuts the X-T5.

Meanwhile, the new GFX100S II becomes the lowest priced 100mp medium format camera at US$5000. With a US$1000 lower price the new version manages to get a few clear advantages over its predecessor: 8 stops IBIS, X-Processor 5 and all the abilities that come with that (including subject detection focus), a bigger EVF (5.76m dots), more images per charge, and a slight reduction in weight. Compared to the more expensive GFX100 II, what you really give up is a few Fn buttons, a CFe slot, and a few megapixels in the EVF (still upgraded from the previous model, though). Frame rate and buffer size is lower, and the video specs are also more modest. Again, an undercut. 

I suppose this is "build market share" strategy, but it has to come at a cost to gross profit margin, and I'm not sure that Fujifilm isn't hurting themselves. For example, we now have a number of cameras using the 40mp sensor, but one of those (X100VI) is in extremely short supply compared to demand. Unless Fujifilm has turned on the spigot for 40mp sensors, they run the risk of not being able to take advantage of the popularity of the cameras they've already introduced. Indeed, my guess is that X100VI demand is already dropping, even before Fujifilm has managed to meet backorders.

Fujifilm also announced two new lenses at the summit: the 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 R LM WR for the XF mount, and the 500mm f/5.6 R LM OIS WR for the GFX mount. The former becomes the new "standard" zoom lens for the APS-C bodies (X-S20, X-T50, X-T5), while the latter is a near 400mm equivalent telephoto for the large medium format sensor bodies.

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