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Fujifilm's GFX 50S is a mirrorless camera with a giant sensor

Engadget Engadget 19/09/2016 Cherlynn Low
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Fujifilm's been trying to take on its rivals by offering larger sensors for better quality pictures, but its latest system takes the cake. The new GFX 50S is the first to use the company's new G Format sensor, which Fujifilm said it fully customized and designed, and measures 43.8mm x 32.9mm. That's 1.7 times larger than the typical 35mm (aka fullframe) setup in high-end DSLRs and mirrorless cameras. And despite that huge sensor, the 50S still manages to retain a light 800 gram (body only) footprint and a size smaller than a typical fullframe DSLR. The GFX 50S will be available in early 2017, but price is still unknown.

But that's not all. The new sensor will be a whopping 51.4-megapixels sharp, and its pixel size is an obscene 5.3 microns. The GFX 50S will be compatible with a series of lenses using the new G Mount that Fujifilm is launching, with three of them arriving at the same time as the camera. These are a GF120mm f/4 macro lens, a GF32-64mm f/4 and a GF63mm f/2.8 prime. In mid 2017, three more options will be available: GF35mm f/2.8, GF23mm f/4 and GF110mm f/2. The company is expecting to hit 100-megapixels with this G-mount format in the future, so this could be the beginning of incredibly high-res pictures to come.

The GFX 50S looks similar to Fujifilm's X series cameras, which sport a somewhat retro look. It has a foldout display that you can tilt vertically and horizontally, as well as a viewfinder that you can attach with a hotshoe. Fujifilm is also offering viewfinders that you can tilt and rotate to make framing odd angles easier, as well as other accessories that it was somewhat vague about.

Fujifilm isn't the first to market with a compact medium format camera. Hasselblad took that title with its X1D earlier this year. While the X1D is slightly lighter (725 grams) than the Fujifilm, it's also jaw droppingly expensive at $8,995. We don't yet know the price of the GFX 50S, but we are expecting (hoping, really) it will cost less than $5,000. Or cheaper than the Hasselblad, anyway, since that brand tends to be pricier than most.

We'll be checking out the new Fujifilm GFX 50S, along with a bunch of other cameras, directly from Photokina this week, so stay tuned for our impressions.

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