Fujifilm Remote App. with Fuji X-T1 56mm f/1.2 lens and iPad

First off the Fuji remote control app. isn't as simple and intuitive as the Panasonic one I discussed in the previous posts. Simple enough to download and install sure (no password), but getting it running seems to have to be done in a specific order. Turn the camera on, select wirless communication, open up app on iPad, go to settings on iPad select the X-T1 network, go back to app. and select remote. It should then connect. (Hopefully!) Unfortunately if you don't do this quick enough the camera screen closes down (apparently fed up of of waiting) and you have to start again. 

Also the iPad screen is vertical orientation only and unlike the Panasonic the screen on the camera shuts down. Several of the controls on the iPad are in menus and not on the home screen. The app. also picks up on how the camera is set up when it's switched on. So it is a lot more fiddly. However when it's going it works fine. Focusing is by touching the screen, you can change aperture, ISO etc. and switch between stills and video, which produces more problems which I'll discuss later.

STILLS

Shows the advantages of vibration free camera triggering. I shot all these with the 56mm f/1.2 lens at ISO 100 (No Raw - jpg. only) and they are spectacularly sharp. I also shot two 25 and 30 sec. exposure at ISO 100 and f/16 and as you can see they are also very good indeed.







VIDEO

When I first tried this I was disappointed. I set everything up as I wanted and selected video. You do this by dragging a red highlight from the camera to the movie icon. However when I pressed record the camera switched to it's own auto focusing mode, ignoring what I'd carefully focused on. However, I did discover a work around. Switching to manual focus. However you have to turn the camera on with the focus selector set to AF and then select MF when everything is up and running or it doesn't work. You can then select the focus as you want in stills mode (You have to do it like this since you can't select focus in movie mode!!!!!!!) Then drag the highlight to the movie icon. The screen then switches to it's auto-focus mode BUT when you hit the record button it goes back to how it looked in stills mode and records that. Confusing? Irritating? You bet. Fuji really (REALLY!!) have to sort out the video on this camera. Oh by the way you can't switch focus points when it's recording video either. (Remember no video focus selection option) So if you want to switch focus with the same framing you have to stop recording, switch back to stills, refocus and then switch back to movie mode and press record. Got that?

Now you might think I'd have given up by now, sold all my Fuji gear and bought a Panasonic outfit. However there's another big BUT here. Have a look at the video and I'll explain.



See how smooth those transitions are? This is done by editing the clips in iMovie and adding a 1 sec. cross dissolve. So it is worth it, particularly when using the superb 56mm wide open at f/1.2 which I did here.

So if you want ease of use then the Pansonic app. and wireless implementation works much better. The Fuji app. is much harder work but I got there in the end. However if I was shooting on a job with any kind of pressure I'd definitely leave the Fuji at home. I would miss that lovely DOF challenged look from the 56mm though, I guess I could buy the 42.5mm Panasonic to get something similar but lets not go there! (Yet)

So in the space of two days I've gone from a wireless novice to an iPad wielding expert. (And if you believe that you'll believe anything!) I am however convinced by the benefit of remote operation and I must say using the iPad, which is light portable and easy to use is (mostly) a pleasure. There are distinct advantages for me as a photographer and I will be trying this outside 'in the field' (probably literally) as soon as I get some nice weather again.

Knowing Fuji, this app. will probably be state of the art in about a years time when they sort it out, but it isn't yet. If Fuji is your only option and you want to explore the possibilities of wireless remote control on a tablet or phone, then I have to issue a warning that you need to be prepared to experience some frustration, particularly if like me this is all pretty new to you. However, when I've got the time to cope with the less than optimum interface of the app. I will try it again, because as I think you have seen, there are some rather good results to be obtained. And the thought of shooting some tethered stills and video with those gorgeous Fuji lenses is something that even the clunky Fuji software can't stop me anticipating.

Finally I've left the 'best' (Or is that the worst) to last. I'll be having a go at the Sony system soon. It didn't work last time I tried it, but there's new firmware in the cameras and the app. has apparently been updated. However knowing Sony I imagine it won't be uncomplicated. I'll post when I've got my head round it. Don't hold your breath!

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