Fujifilm’s X Series mimics 35mm film cameras in terms of look and feel. Fujifilm’s X series cameras have dedicated dials to control shutter speed, exposure compensation and aperture. Many of their first-party lenses also feature physical aperture rings. I would have gotten a dedicated ISO-dial if I had bought the XT3. There are 2 buttons that can be used to control ISO & Aperture, even when using a lens with no aperture ring.
The X-T30 is much more tactile than any other digital camera I have used. I usually put my cameras in aperture priority, and then forget about them. The lack of a PASM (Program Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority and Manual) dial has forced me to become familiar with the various camera options. It also forces me to consider each exposure more critically. You can put the X-T30 into shutter or aperture mode by switching certain settings to automatic, but it’s not as simple as turning a dial.
Film simulations are another big deal for me. Fuji cameras come with a set of profiles designed to simulate specific film stocks. Imagine them as Instagram filters but better. Astia works best for portraits. Velvia is great for landscapes. Eterna has a low-contrast look.
This is the perfect app for me because I like to focus on small details and make adjustments. After discovering Fuji X Weekly, I spent a few days looking through recipes compatible with my camera. I entered the settings, took test shots, and saved my favorites in Evernote to make it easy to recall. Fuji allows me to easily load up to 7 presets using the Q menu. This means I can take my camera out with 7 different “films”, and change them according to the situation.
The best thing about this set-up is that it allows me to shoot and return with beautiful photos that do not require any editing. I can make a decision in the moment. Would it be better to use a warmer palette of colors? Should I increase the saturation? What would the scene look like in black and white with high contrast? It’s not necessary to go through a long list of options to try out different looks.
I always shoot RAW + JPG in case I later change my mind or something doesn’t turn out as I had hoped. It’s great to be able to see the final product and concentrate on taking photos instead of spending more time at a computer. This is exactly what I want in a hobby – less time spent staring at the computer screen.
This is as close as I can get to film shooting on a digital. I don’t want it to be gimmicky or absurd. I won’t limit how many photos I take, nor will I use only one preset. While I can always go back to film photography, I would rather not. Digital cameras offer many modern conveniences. Also, the cost of 35mm film has increased . Craigslist can offer a good price for expired rolls.
But it’s not all rosy. The X-T30 can only record 10 minutes at a go of 4K video, making shooting reviews a pain. It’s possible that I joined the Fujifilm bandwagon at the wrong time. The company has been cultivating a loyal following for years with its ” Kaizen” philosophy, which sees it constantly updating older devices in order to add new features and fix bugs. In recent years, however, the company seems to have moved away from this philosophy.
It was not until early October 2021 that the X-T30 received its last firmware update. This consisted almost exclusively of minor bug fixes. The X-T30 was not even three years old. Around the same time, Fuji introduced the X-T30 II which is virtually identical in terms of hardware but has a number of new features including film simulations. It seems that there is no technical reason why many of these features, particularly the film simulations, couldn’t be transferred to the slightly older cameras, but Fuji left some users in the cold.