The problem with Fuji


There is a rave review at Luminous Landscape on the new Fuji X-E1. At no point in the entire piece is there any mention of the raw files from the camera, how they look, how they are processed, or what is used to process them. Instead we get the same old stuff we got about the X-Pro 1, how wonderful the jpgs. are. So why is this? And how come nobody apart from me and Thom Hogan (or so it seems) cares that Fuji have, as yet, provided no way for their X-Trans sensor raw files to be processed in a satisfactory way?

Doesn't anybody care? Do X-Pro 1 owners shoot jpg. only? Do they like Silkypix? Are they satisfied with how Photoshop makes their files look?

Now I don't know the answer to any of those questions, but I am amazed how Fuji get this constant good opinion about their cameras when they haven't provided what is to me just about the most important thing that they can, which is a simple way of getting the best out of the camera.

Are they satisfied with how Silkypix renders the images? Do they think that Photoshop / Lightroom does a good job? I don't know the answer to those either. 

Quotes from Thoms article. (Do read it in full - Its excellent)

"Fujifilm is to be reprimanded for introducing a new sensor pattern into the market and not working closely with software developers prior to the launch (I'm not sure they're working all that closely after the launch, either). This is blatant disregard and disrespect for the serious photographers Fujifilm targets, in my opinion. We have an existing workflow. We don't want to be forced to change that workflow and our software mix to get good results from our raw files."

"I'd say it's even more incumbent upon Fujifilm to make sure that the common user workflows fully support what Fujifilm knows about this process, because these software companies don't have the luxury of time, and the very low sales volume of the X-Pro1 (even adding in the likely more popular X-E1) means they're not likely to dedicate engineers to finding the solution that Fujifilm already knows."

Well that makes two of us!!

Is it that Fuji owners are more concerned that they own a pretend Leica and can call themselves street photographers to actually be bothered about the quality of their files? Its frustrating because the damn thing CAN produce really impressive images from raw, if you have a Mac and use Raw Photo Processor 64 software which is excellent though somewhat complicated and slow. The jpgs. are good yes, but I can get better results from other cameras which have raw processing that works. The camera is decent enough and so are the lenses, the high ISO results are the best I've ever seen and it and subsequent cameras have the possibility to be very good indeed because the sensor is good, even potentially great, but is being turned into an also ran because of Fuji's refusal to get their head out the sand. Are they intent on becoming another Sigma, the creators of what should be a sensor that stretches the boundaries of what a digital camera can capture, but with a tendency to self destruct because of some insular attitude that means they make mistakes and take way too long to own up them and more importantly, fix them? No matter how much "The Fuji Guys" waffle on about their cameras, it cuts no ice with those of us who have no hesitation in moving on to something else when we don't get what we need. 

Fuji bang on about how they make cameras for pro's, well I'm a Pro, and I'm sorry but you actually have to earn that designation before you stick it on a camera. And a "Pro" camera means that it can integrate seamlessly into my workflow and be able to produce results that are acceptable to me with the software I prefer. Since Fuji obviously don't care about this, and its 6 months now since the camera went on sale, then I won't be going near them again until they show some willingness to give this photographer what he needs, rather than what they think I should accept. This is a real shame because they are surely repeatedly shooting themselves in the foot and until they stop I think a lot of people (well at least two!) are going to remain somewhat frustrated. 

Apart from anything else its just handing the marketplace to the already established companies who generally make sure that satisfactory raw support is available either before the cameras go on sale or shortly afterwards. Why Fuji can't do this I can't understand. I would like to be able to properly process the raw files I took with the camera to see just what they are capable of before I get too old to see the screen! I live in hope, though without much expectation of a speedy solution. 


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