The rumors were true. On Monday, Fujifilm announced it is working on a new mirrorless medium format camera system. Dubbed the GFX 50S, it uses a 51.4-megapixel sensor measuring 43.8 x 32.9mm. A new line of GF lenses will be developed for the system as well.
Fujifilm calls the GFX a response to requests from professional photographers to bring the innovations and signature color reproduction of the smaller X series to a larger format. Rather than compete with Sony, Fujifilm decided to just skip full frame and move from APS-C straight to medium format. The GFX 50S will use the X-Processor Pro imaging processor first introduced with the X-Pro2 to provide the same high-quality color and tone reproduction that Fujifilm shooters are familiar with.
The camera features what Fujifilm calls a revolutionary new design for medium-format systems and is a lighter weight and more compact than competing cameras.
Part of this is thanks to the mirrorless nature that foregoes the bulky optical viewfinder systems of other cameras, but it also saves space by being modular. The electronic viewfinder, for example, can be positioned at any angle — or removed entirely. An optional battery grip can also be added to improve ergonomics when shooting in portrait orientation.
While its compact form factor should make it easier to hold by hand, the GFX 50S is built around tethered shooting — a preferred method by studio photographers. Fujifilm promises it will be compatible with various RAW conversion programs.
The new G Mount features a short, 26.7mm-flange distance which Fujifilm says will help limit vignetting and improve edge-to-edge sharpness on the new GF lenses. Speaking of lenses, Fujifilm also announced six models on Monday, including a 63mm f/2.8, 32-64mm f/4, 120mm f/4 Macro, 110mm f/2, 23mm f/4 ultra-wide angle, and a 45mm f/2.8.
Additionally, Fujifilm has said each lens will be dust and weather resistant and will operate in temperatures as low as 14-degrees Fahrenheit. Combined with the camera’s compact form factor, this could make the GFX 50S a fantastic camera for outdoor and landscape shooters.
While pricing has yet to be announced on the camera or any of the lenses, Fujifilm said the system will be available in early 2017.