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FUJIFILM Delivers 100MP Imaging with GFX 100 Medium-Format Camera

By Shawn C. Steiner

One hundred megapixels. The day has finally arrived when it is possible for your more “everyday” photographer to obtain and make effective use of a 100-megapixel camera system without spending a completely unreasonable amount. Thanks to FUJIFILM and the official launch of the GFX 100 Mirrorless Camera, photographers can now consider ultra-high-res medium-format imaging in their search for a high-end professional body.

Easily sitting as the new flagship of FUJIFILM’s entire photography division, the GFX 100 has an insane feature set, and it all starts with that sensor. From a technology standpoint, this is one of the latest and greatest medium-format sensors available today. As for specs, it clocks 102MP across its 43.8 x 32.9mm area, omits the low-pass filter, and it is backed by the X-Processor 4 engine to deliver class-leading performance. This sensor is also back side illuminated and can natively capture 16-bit images, meaning that image quality is improved in nearly every way, including a sensitivity range from ISO 100-12800, which is expandable to ISO 50-102400. This configuration even supports the recording of DCI and UHD 4K video at up to 30 fps in 10-bit 4:2:0 internally and 10-bit 4:2:2 externally. Essentially, the GFX 100 manages to offer the same video options as the smaller X-T3 but with a much larger sensor.

Being the third medium-format release in FUJIFILM’s GFX system and now sitting as the definitive flagship, the GFX 100 takes on a different form from its GFX 50S and GFX 50R predecessors. The high-resolution sensor and added technology demanded a “full-size” design that incorporates a vertical grip at the base and holds two large battery packs. One such addition that required the larger form factor is the inclusion of in-body image stabilization. This is a surprising and impressive ability that accounts for five axes of movement and is rated to 5.5 stops.

Another advancement of this release is an upgraded viewfinder. Still removable and with the same design, this new EVF has a 0.5″ 5.76m-dot OLED screen that is incredibly detailed. The rear touchscreen is great, as well, at 3.2″ with a 2.36m-dot and FUJIFILM’s unique three-way tilting design. On top of the GFX 100 is a 1.8″ 303 x 230-dot monochrome sub-LCD that will provide quick access to your settings and can be configured to display exposure settings, a histogram, and other visual indicators to help photographers. And, on the back below the main screen is another sub-monitor, this time a 2.05″ 256 x 64-dot monochrome OLED that will show you some other important settings.

Simply having a 100MP sensor would be enough to make the GFX 100 stand out. FUJIFILM took it quite a bit further, however, and has dramatically improved the speed of the camera’s operation compared to the previous GFX models. Most significantly, autofocus has been dramatically improved. The GFX 100 now has a phase-detect AF system with nearly 100% coverage and 3.76 million pixels. It will even operate in low light down to -3 EV. Continuous shooting is also available at up to 5 fps and shooters can capture up to 41 JPEGs or 14 compressed raw images in a single sequence.

Next on the list of features is 4K video. The GFX 100 boasts DCI and UHD 4K recording at up to 30 fps using the full width of the medium-format image sensor. This provides a true medium-format look for video recordings, though the camera does use line skipping and pixel binning to read from the 11K-wde image. As for quality, FUJIFILM has continued to advance its video tech, shown here in the form of internal 10-bit 4:2:0 recording at up to 400 Mb/s using HEVC, as well as the ability to output uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2 video through a micro-HDMI port. The quad-CPU X-Processor 4 is the enabler here and also helps minimize rolling shutter and improve continuous autofocus during recording. On top of this, the GFX 100 has FUJIFILM’s Film Simulations, including Eterna, and offers F-Log gamma for advanced color grading in post. Additionally, there are both a 3.5mm microphone jack and 3.5mm headphone output for audio.

Speaking of connectors and connections, there is a USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C connector that is useful for tethering and charging up the battery with USB Power Delivery support. Tethering is extremely viable since FUJIFILM is working with Phase One to ensure compatibility with Capture One software. Other ports include a 2.5mm remote connector, a 15V DC IN for use with an optional AC Adapter, and a standard PC sync terminal. It also has built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy.

Right side

The FUJIFILM GFX 100 is one of the most groundbreaking cameras of the year because it not only substantially increases the resolution of relatively accessible cameras, but it brings class-leading features as well. Right now, we have a couple product specialists getting an early look and we hope to get one for a full-fledged review very soon, so stay tuned to B&H Explora for more news on this amazing release. Also, please be sure to leave a comment with any questions or thoughts on the camera in the Comments section, below!

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