The Fujifilm GFX 50s II and its other GFX 50x peers really suck in low light when it comes to AF performance. Not only slow - but unreliable as well. Albeit - I have to add, that i used a very slow lens, as well (not bright in aperture, I mean). The GF 35-70mm f 4.5-5.6 is... well, slow. That makes AF even more sluggish/unreliable in low light.


But i knew this.

Even if i do have a sucky feeling about this - I knew this likely would happen. It is just another reason for me to treat it like a true, rather manual handled medium format camera: on a tripod.

Snap shots indoors in low light with a contrast based focus and very slow lens... well, what did i expect ? Of course it would be mediocre.

For such scenarios - one uses instead a Canon EOS R6 with a bright lens - or the Olympus OM-1 equivalent - and they work absolutely stellar. Everything has its place, to be used the right purposes. The Fuji GFX 50s II is not made for such low light scenarios...

At least - I wanted to test it...


In daylight the camera’s AF works OK.

I cannot yet tell about accuracy though. i mean; if it can repeatedly focus accurately. I'll see. Well, this reminds me of the old Olympus days, and the lights wasn't as bright indoors. Sometimes the AF would be slightly off. Sometimes It wouldn't focus at all.

Those are the disadvantages of cameras with only contrast based AF. Which is tied to the original sensor architecture like Fuji GFX 50s II and other other 50's series which uses the same sensor. Which has its roots in the labs of year 2012, and then introduced in 2014 (Pentax 645z).


Stunning colors

It surprises me how vibrant the colors are with the Fuji GFX sensor. Every time i open a file... it is like BAM ! Even at high ISO you can still see how colors shine through vibrantly - even at ISO 51.000 (but noise levels are now excessive of course).


I am very pleased with the Fujifilm GFX 50s II - as long i handle the camera as a real medium format camera on a tripod. After all - I use it mainly for the VERTEX method - which is all manual and tripod based anyway.

For casual shooting i am more skeptical. Especially in low light, i do not enjoy the Fuji. In daylight - well i still have test that. The camera is a bit clumsy - despite its very cool, lovely design (I do like it from the looks). Add also the fact that i am not used with the settings in Fuji cameras ! It will take some time to get used to, and to get the individual settings to my liking.


The Fuji GFX 50 series are not really fast cameras

They are MEDIUM FORMAT CAMERAS. In order to utilize the amazing 51 MP sensor, or even 102 MP for that matter - you need to be far more careful with the shooting discipline. Otherwise, image quality degrades - so it isn't really a camera that you can compare with fullframe (24x36mm) sensor cameras, á lá Canon R5, R6, R3, Sony A7x and A9x series, or Nikon Z series.


ISO 51000

While you would guess - the ISO performance drops sharply once you go above ISO 6400. Still manageable at ISO 12800 - but from there on ... the sensor falls. But it is fun to test, nevertheless.

The black & white JPG files the Fuji GFX creates are... horrible at very high ISO (very blotchy and just weird and ugly looking). That surprised me to say the least. The results from creating them manually from a RAF RAW file in Photoshop, turn out way better in that regard.

At lower ISO, Fuji's in-camera JPG engine is excellent.


Adobe Denoise AI can help to cope with noise

Even with the risk of looking slightly "plasticly" afterwards - you can counteract that by adding a little of grain/noise again (after conversion with Adobe Denoise AI).

It is quite amazing what Adobe's Denoise AI can do in terms of bringing down noise as well color noise - even in RAW files with very high ISO - it is a wonderful rescue. Even for older RAW files - it is an amazing tool. Also for smaller sensors at higher ISO, it works fantastic.

I am not saying it works perfect for every photo - but it works excellent overall - and today my most preferred DeNoise tool there is (This far, it only works on true RAW files, not on other formats like JPG) But for JPG's you can use Topaz DeNoise AI - which also works very well. Just be careful will unwanted artifacts which occasionally can show up. Otherwise, it too, is one of the finest denoise tools on the market.


Note ! Adobe Denoise + high ISO on Fuji GFX

The Adobe Denoise AI engine can introduce weird patterns in images you took at very high ISO on the Fuji (and on other cameras). Sometimes the vast noise reduction works in a convenient way - but sometimes you get odd looking patterns. The hair on Sal's arms for example sometimes turned out totally weird, artificial looking.

Let me show you that in this example:

So, you may want to pay extra attention to that phenomena how Adobe Denoise is handling such areas, and how those turn out after Denoise AI does its "magic".

I normally don't run around putting the Fuji GFX 50 into the extended ISO 51000 mode, in order to take portraits on the fly... These AI patterns usually only turn up at very high ISO due to the excessive grain, how the "AI" translates the local grain pattern.

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