Friday, December 20, 2013

Auto ISO firmware update for Fuji X cameras - X-Pro1, X-E1&2, X100S

Fujifilm, once again attentive to its customer base, has issued a further firmware update for its X cameras. One of the more important items is that it now allows setting the minimum shutter speed when using Auto ISO. For anyone using Auto ISO, as I do, this is a very important refinement to this feature. You can find the specific firmware update for your Fuji X camera here.  Some of the new update features, such as that made to the auto ISO, were already included in the firmware of the newer cameras like the X-E2 and X100S, and so only apply to older models. Each firmware update is camera specific and needs to be downloaded separately.

In the example below I have set the Auto ISO on my X-E2 to cap out at 1600 and because I am using short focal length lenses I set the minimum shutter speed to 1/80 second. What this means is that in a low light situation the camera will increase the ISO as high as its maximum (1600 in this case) so long as the shutter speed stays above 1/80 second. The camera will only decrease the shutter speed below 1/80 second if the correct exposure cannot be achieved at 1600 ISO.

Of course this feature is only useful with the camera set to Auto exposure mode. In situations where I know the camera can best be relied upon to pick the correct exposure I usually keep it set to aperture priority mode and make minor exposure adjustments with the Over/Under exposure dial. This allows for quick shooting in changing situations.

Here the base ISO is set to 200 and the maximum to 1600. I selected a minimum shutter speed of 1/80 because I am using a short focal length lens on the camera. The minimum shutter speed can be set as high as 1/500 second. 
The minimum shutter speed can be set in a range of 1/4 to 1/500 second. 
 Also added with the latest firmware update is the ability to change several of the letters in the file name. Four letters can be changed when the camera is set to sRGB color space, and three letters changed when set to Adobe RGB. Admittedly, this is not an earth shattering change, but it is handy if you use more than one camera. I have several cameras and like to keep their RAW files separate.

I changed the filename prefix to "XP1" on my X-Pro1, and XE2 on my X-E2 so when I shoot with both cameras at the same time and put the RAW files into the same computer directory, the camera I used is immediately apparent. I often take several thousand exposures in one day and find this a convenient way to organize them.
Another improvement with this update specifically for the X-Pro1 includes greater precision in the image frame outline in the OVF (optical view finder). In a test I ran using a 35mm lens at very close focus range where parallax correction would be essential, I found the white frame finder to be absolutely accurate. Nice!

Aperture and shutter speed can be changed while the AE lock is pressed and held. Exposure with then revert to what it was when the lock is released.

Consecutive numbering of images has been added for the continuous shooting mode.  In the past, subsequent images in continuous shooting mode were treated as a subset of the first image and displayed in a smaller frame superimposed over the main image when viewing.  I always found this to be confusing. Now each image has its own unique number and is treated separately.

When developing RAW files within the camera, the flow of moving from one image to the next has been improved. This is not a camera feature I ever use so I did not test it.

Hats off to Fujifilm for making some of the best cameras in the world even better with this latest update. It is no wonder the X cameras have enjoyed such a dedicated user following.

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