Big sensor with a (relatively) small price tag
The Fujifilm GFX50S MK II is strongly tipped to be Fujifilm’s next medium format camera, with rumors suggesting it’ll launch in 2021.
The reliable Fuji Rumors yesterday suggested that a new GFX camera was already in the works, following the recent arrival of the Fujifilm GFX100S, and that it would be more “affordable” than that camera.
This pointed towards a successor to the Fujifilm GFX50R, a rangefinder-style camera that arrived in 2019. But it looks like that won’t be the case, with a new Fuji Rumors post claiming that we’ll instead see a successor to the recently discontinued Fujifilm GFX50S.
Other details are scarce, but Fuji Rumors claims that the Fujifilm GFX50S MK II “will use the same sensor currently featured on the original GFX50S”.
This sensor is very much designed for landscape photography and studio work, because it lacks the on-sensor phase-detect autofocus that’s common on most mirrorless cameras.
Instead, the GFX 50S relies solely on contrast-detect autofocus, although we found this to be pretty solid despite the noticeable lack of speed when compared to cameras like the Sony A7R IV.
How much cheaper?
The big questions, then, are how exactly Fujifilm plans to upgrade the Fujifilm GFX50S and what that price tag will be.
The inclusion of in-body image stabilization (IBIS) feels like a virtual certainty, given Fujifilm managed to shrink that system down by 20% for the Fujifilm GFX100S and it was lacking on the GFX50S.
This is a bonus for handheld shooting, which is one of the pretty unique talents of Fujifilm’s GFX series – until recently, medium format cameras were so large and unwieldy, they were destined for life in the studio.
If the Fujifilm GFX100S is anything to go by, we can also expect the GFX50S MK II to be much smaller and lighter than its predecessor. Fujifilm managed to shave off 500g from the weight of the original GFX100 on the GFX100S – if it manages to do the same for its next medium format camera, it could be a similar in size to some of the best full-frame cameras.
But perhaps even more intriguing is the GFX50S MK II’s possible price tag. The Fujifilm GFX50S cost $6,500 / £6,199 when it launched in 2019, but with the GFX100S recently arriving for $5,999 / £5,499 / AU$9,499, it would need to come in significantly below that. If it could come in somewhere close to the price of the Fujifilm GFX 50R, then the GFX50S MK II could be a compelling alternative to its full-frame rivals.