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Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Leica – On the Streets Camera Review by Thorsten von Overgaard (subtitled)

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Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Leica – On the Streets Camera Review by Thorsten von Overgaard (subtitled)

– My name is Thorsten Overgaard, I’m a Danish photographer, I travel the world taking photographs and teaching photography. Today I gonna talk about the Fuji X-Pro2 camera. I felt it was time to try a different camera, so I decided to get a Fuji or Fujifilm X-Pro2 camera, and I got the special, I don’t even know if it’s a limited edition, but it’s actually a special edition Graphite and that looks really awesome, so that’s the one I went for.

So when I got the Fuji X-Pro2, I unboxed it, I will save you for the unboxing video because it wasn’t that seksy. So I put on the lens and one of the things I noticed is this camera is really light. It does actually have as many buttons and I was fear.

I feel that it’s light, it’s very intuitive, and can of it brings me a little bit back to when photographing was new for me, that this is kind of exciting and it’s also, I don’t know, it just feels simple in a way, so I like that.

But of course the main interest I had was how does the electronic viewfinder look on this one? And first I was like, I don’t even think it has one, maybe I got the wrong model because I cannot find it, I tried different buttons, of course I didn’t read the manual, but I tried different buttons and I just couldn’t find it.

So finally I had to give up and I had to look in the manual and I find out exactly this button right here, I hadn’t seen this button. So this button I can change between pure optical viewfinder, optical view finder with frame and text, that is like an over-layer of digital or electronic viewfinder.

And then I can turn it and also I have that, and then I have a little, down in the right corner, I have a zoom in of the focus area, so I can actually manual focus and see down in the right corner on the frame, how does the electronic picture look.

And then I can also tilt this one, so I get the whole viewfinder in here becomes electronic and I can see the picture purely electronic. And that’s what I wanted to see, “How does it work in this one?” The thing is that when you get a Fuji with the lens here is a 23mm, but I call it as 35mm because that’s how it works on this crop sensor.

Then you have autofocus and that makes the camera really easy to use. That you basically just take it up and it focuses really quickly, and then you can just take the picture. So it doesn’t really matter with the viewfinder how precise or whatever it is.

But of course, I came from Leica, so I said, okay, I’m gonna put on a lens adapter and Fuji actually makes an adapter, it’s even an intelligent adapter, so I can put on any Leica lens and the way I do it is simply I just put on first, this one here and then we take a lens here that cost four or five times more than the camera just for the fun of it, a Noctilux, and the thing with a Noctilux is also that it has extremely narrow focus.

So you have to be really precise with your focusing, and when I turned on the electronic viewfinder here, I found out this actually works. I’m not sure that I see it super precise, but then I looked at the picture and it actually, it works.

So it’s not that I would say that, this is like state of the art or some future space technology EVF, but it works. And that’s actually the thing I like with the whole camera, this thing just works, it’s light, it’s not super expensive.

You can just take pictures with it, and I mean, it sounds ridiculous, but that’s actually what I wanna use the camera for, so that’s perfect. In Many ways the Fuji X-Pro 2 is, I mean, it’s just feels really natural in the hand.

I put on a different strap, a “Tie Her Up” leather strap because it’s much easier to mount on the camera and it has the right length. And I just went using the camera and it’s simple, I like it. Then I get into the trouble, there’s actually a lot of buttons here and there, and there’s a really extremely complicated menu.

I don’t agree with it, I think photography is really simple. A camera is basically, just a matter of getting the exposure right. So anything on a camera that doesn’t have anything to do with exposure, basically doesn’t belong on the camera and this one has a lot of it.

So I would suddenly find that I went from black and white to color and I didn’t know what button I pressed, and I find out it has a wheel here, has another wheel here, has something here and different buttons, I have a “Q-button” here and I have a “AFL button” here, and I also have exposure here and a lot of stuff that, in my opinion, doesn’t really belong in a camera.

So what do you do with that? Well, you basically have to read the manual and I don’t think that anybody’s ever going to use all of the stuff that is in here. I think it’s a matter of finding out what’s there and then find a way through it, and say, this is my settings and that’s the things I have to use on this camera, and I have to know about.

The rest, I don’t care. But before you can get there, you actually have to find out what is it? Because maybe there’s something you need to know about. And one great thing about the Fuji is that it comes with the manuals.

Well, it comes in different languages, but this one is the English one. And the manual here is actually really well-made, that’s kind of unusual for manuals for anything, camera, electronics or videos and stuff, because this one have a chapter, first it says, before you begin, and that’s all, “What is this thing? What is this thing?” And so on.

How to put in the battery and so on. And then you have “First steps” and then you come into “Basic photography” and “Playback”, and then you’re gonna have a chapter on “Movie”, if you want to do that.

And you have a whole chapter about the “Q button”, and then you have here, almost in the back, you have reference about the manual and so on. So it’s made, so you can actually figure it out. And then they have a really genius thing, and that is to have a manual that says “New features guide”, so that means if you had a Fuji X-Pro, not the X-Pro 2 but the previous X-Pro, and now you get this one, you basically know your camera, you would presume.

So you just need to know what’s changed, and that is in this little manual and that’s a genius way to do it. This is actually a user’s manual, it’s made for use and that’s a, I mean, it’s so unusual they should get a Grammy or an Oscar or something for this.

So I studied this to find out how does this camera work? But basically I just stayed with more or less the setting that I had to begin with. So the Fuji here doesn’t have a full frame sensor, like the Leica has.

When you use the kit lens or the standard lens here that it comes with, it doesn’t really matter, it’s a 35mm and 35mm is 35mm, so, and it’s actually a classic, very good Fuji lens they’ll make a good optics.

Then when you put on, for example, a 50mm lens from another system, then you have to take into consideration that you have a crop factor, it basically just means you move back a little bit, if you want to have the same frame, so it’s not really a big deal.

The sensor is 24 megapixels, so it’s the same pixel count as the Leica M240 or Leica M10, so that doesn’t really make a big difference. The interesting thing with any new camera, you get or new generation of an existing camera is that usually it has a new sensor, and that means you’re gonna have a new look and you’re gonna spend weeks and months trying to adjust that to the look that you want to have.

The Fuji has a really interesting thing because you can do the same as I can do with Leica, and you can actually do it with Nikon DSLRs and everything, just not many people know. But that is that you can record a raw file and a JPG at the same time.

And the raw is always gonna be in colors because it’s the sensor data, all of the sensor data that is just recorded and put into editing program like Lightroom and then the JPG, you can treat the JPG.

So that means in my Leica I will set the JPG to monochrome, so when I import it into Lightroom, I get a color and a JPG in black and white next to each other, so I have all my pictures in color and black and white from the beginning so I can which one looks the best.

And sometimes, or often, the color and the black and white, are good pictures, so I would edit both of them, and put them in the archive. The same I can do with the Fuji. And then the Fuji have different “Film looks”, you can apply to the JPG in colors, and it also have a standard black and white, and you can even add color filters to that one.

So you can add a yellow filter, red filter, green filter, and that’s like, you put color filters in front of the lens in the old days. And a yellow filler is gonna make yellow tones look brighter and blue tones look darker, so that’s how you get a darker sky in black and white.

The Fuji X-Pro 2 have a really cool black and white setting that they called Acros and that’s not the name of a hip-hop’r, (I looked it up), because I actually didn’t know what does Acros mean is it some weird name for something, but it’s actually a name for a black and white film and what Fuji did, they did a setting, that emulates that black and white setting that is kind of contrasty and very detailed in a tone.

And it gives them really nice skin tone in black and white and so on. So that’s the black and white setting I set this camera for. And again, you can go into sub-menus as you can, a lot of these cameras have a lot of sub-menus for everything so, also the black and white, you can go sub-menus in different types of this film with color filters and so on, but I just stay with the standard and it looks amazing.

I don’t even go in and consider, is this like a high quality image or something? Is this a, I look at it and I say, wow, I really like this look and it’s almost like a film look, and that works really well for me.

Then there’s one thing I really kind of fear with the Fuji or any Japanese made camera, and that is, “How does the colors look?” because there’s this expression or term “Japanese colors”. And I haven’t really decided where the Fuji is yet, I see that the pictures tend to have to much blue and to much orange in them, and I’ll make a Lightroom preset to adjust for that.

But then again, in natural light the skin tones, actually looks great, and an all colors looks pretty precise. There’s not a lot of adjustment, it might be for some skin tones. It’s mainly when I get into tungsten light in the evening that then the colors becomes a little bit tricky and then it’s almost like, then we just go black and white, but sometimes you actually want the colors to work.

And it will say when you have tungsten light or you have artificial light in the evening, you often have orange tungsten light, and you also often have Led light, or screens that gives really blue light.

And that’s just the two colors that the color file of the Fuji seems to be a little bit too strong. So everything is a little bit too much blue and too much orange, and then in the evening that becomes kind of extreme, it gets really hard to get the colors right.

But with all cameras you can get really accurate colors because you can go away from the Auto White Balance (AWB). The auto white balance worked really well in daylight, I don’t think it works that well in the evening, but it’s not really a unique thing for the Fuji or anything that’s basically all cameras have trouble with artificial lights, or is it because there’s a mix of artificial lights.

But when I want the colors right, and I usually do, then if I do a portrait or some scene where I say, “This one, I want the colors to be really accurate”. I’ll use a white balance card and here I have one.

And that’s simply just I’ll go into the menu and go down to a Manual White Balance (AWB), and then I’ll take a picture of this card in the scene that I wanted to take a picture of. And then the camera is basically calibrating the colors after the light that hits this card.

And the point with this card is not that it’s a gray, but it is that it’s neutral, so it doesn’t have any warm on cold tones. So it basically just calibrate the sensor, so you get correct colors. So that’s something you can do with all cameras, there’s not really any cameras that cannot get precise colors but you can say, as soon as you rely on something that’s called “Auto”, you’re basically taking the passenger seat and say, “I hope the camera knows what it’s doing”.

In daylight most cameras know, in artificial light and mixed light situations, no camera really can figure it out by themselves, so you have to help them. And that’s when you set the white balance. I’m still in the trial and adjustment and error phase with the Fuji, so we’ll see how I get the colors to look, but I’m pretty sure I’ll get them really precise and the way I want them.

But I don’t there’s nothing in this camera that I cannot control or deal with. So I actually really liked this camera, it has a lot of qualities that somehow I like, so I’m gonna take it with me. So it’s gonna live a life in luxury together with my Leica cameras.

I traveled to more than 25 countries a year, so it’s gonna go see some action and then we’ll see what comes out of it. What I usually do is that I don’t really review cameras, I write about the stuff that I use, the light meters and the cameras and lenses, it’s not reviews, it’s more user reports, it means, “How do I get this thing to work?” And that’s the same I’m gonna do with this one is how do I get the colors and the black and white file and the menus and everything to work the way, so this camera actually can be productive with whatever I’m doing.

And actually there is articles I have written on my website, one by one, my whole website is free. You can read about light, Leica and whatever. Watch out … When you read about Leica, because you might wanna get some of them and usually a lot of them, so watch out! But in any case, go to my website and sign up for my free newsletter.

And if you’re really smart you do it now and you get a free eBook. That was basically all I had to say today about the Fuji, I’ll get back with more and watch some of my other videos till I see you next time.

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