Camera Reviews

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The Fujifilm GFX 50S II is the company’s third 50-megapixel medium format mirrorless camera and the first to feature in-camera stabilization.

In almost every respect, the 50S II is a lower-resolution version of the GFX 100S, sharing more with its high-pixel-count sibling than the original GFX 50S. It means that you benefit from all the improvements Fujifilm has made in the five years since the first GFX 50S was released, but you also see some reduced features.

It is also Fujifilm’s least expensive medium format camera to date, making the 44 x 33mm format more accessible than ever.

Key specifications

  • 51MP 44 x 33mm CMOS sensor
  • In-body stabilization offering up to 6.5EV correction
  • 3.2″ rear touchscreen with two-axis tilt
  • 3.69M dot OLED viewfinder with 0.77x (Equiv) magnification
  • Top-panel status LCD
  • Pixel-shift high-res mode gives 205MP images
  • Battery rated to 440 shots per charge (CIPA)
  • Full HD video at up to 30p, with headphone and mic sockets

The Fujifilm GFX 50S II will be available later this month at an MSRP of $ 4,000. A 35-70mm F4.5-5.6 retractable zoom lens is released alongside the camera, providing coverage equivalent to 28-55mm. Fujifilm is asking $ 1000 for the lens if purchased separately but adds just $ 500 to the cost of the 50S II if purchased together as a kit.

What’s new?

Image Stabilization

The biggest change compared to the previous 50MP GFX models is the addition of image stabilization. It hardly needs to be said how valuable image stabilization can be, especially for expanding the range of circumstances under which you will get the full resolution of the camera. In one fell swoop, it means that you are much more likely to see the full benefit of the camera when shooting handheld.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

This isn’t a particularly extreme example, but in-body stabilization helps maintain sharpness even when shooting shutter speeds at or below 1/equivalent focal length.

The GFX 50S II stabilization system earns a rating of 6.5 correction stops when subjected to tests established by the industry body CIPA.

The image stabilization mechanism also enables the camera to offer a multi-shot pixel-shift high-resolution mode that shoots and combines 16 images with fractional sensor changes between each. No attempt has been made to correct movement in the camera or in the scene, so a tripod and a static object are required for this function.


Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

One area where the 50S II loses, compared to its predecessor, is in terms of its viewfinder. It uses a similar 0.5 “type 3.69M-dot EVF OLED panel, but uses the smaller, lower-magnification optics of the GFX 100S, giving it an ‘only’ 0.77x magnification (in full-frame terms). This is below the 0.85x magnification of the original 50S, but is still competitive with Canon’s EOS R5, for example.

The other area in which the 50S II lags behind its predecessor is that the visor is integrated, rather than removable, which also means that there is no option to add the EVF-TL1 tilt adapter between the body of the camera and viewfinder.

Updates since the GFX 50S

The original GFX 50S received a number of firmware updates and feature enhancements, but these have not included all the small feature enhancements Fujifilm has made over the five years since its launch. The GFX 50S II gets a number of small feature additions that have not made their way back to the previous camera.

  • Lossy Raw compression option: This may seem like an odd thing to add when there’s already a lossless compression option but it allows smaller Raw files with little-to-no visual loss of quality, which may suit some photographers.
  • DR Priority mode: This adjusts exposure to protect highlights (like the standard DR modes) and also brightens the shadows to maximize the amount of dynamic range shown in the images. ‘Strong’ uses DR 400 mode exposures and a big shadow lift, ‘Weak’ uses DR 200 exposures and doesn’t brighten the shadows so much. ‘Auto’ appears to pick between these two settings (never selecting the ‘off’ setting). We found the results a bit over-the-top, but only the change in exposure has any impact on the Raw, so there’s no harm trying them in high-contrast conditions.
  • Nostalgic Neg and Eterna Bleach Bypass film simulations: These give the camera a total of 19 color modes (if you include the variants of Acros and Black & White modes that simulate the use of a colored filter in front of the lens).

In total, Fujifilm says there have been 79 minor adjustments to the camera’s behavior and operation since the introduction of the original 50S.

GFX100S features not present / Video

Because the GFX 50S II uses the same sensor as the original model, there are a handful of features that you don’t get from the GFX 100S. The most obvious is resolution, but it also lags behind in terms of video. While the 100S can record 4K video, the 50S II only offers 1080p capture and cannot match the 10-bit capture of its higher resolution twin.

So while you get the ability to record to the capacity of a memory card and options like linear focus response for video recorders that rely on manual focus, there are no major improvements in video quality.

How it compares

Fujifilm has priced the 50S II $ 500 lower than it released the 50R, even though the new camera is gaining image stabilization – a major improvement for many of the types of shots that it does well. This puts it much closer in price to the likes of Canon’s EOS R5 and other high-resolution full-frame camera bodies.

There are still differences in terms of lens costs, but many of the Fujinon lenses justify their higher prices well.

Fujifilm GFX
50S II
Fujifilm GFX 50R Nikon Z7 II Canon EOS R5
MSRP $4000 $4500 $3000 $3900
Sensor size 44 x 33mm 44 x 33mm 36 x 24mm 36 x 24mm
Resolution 51.1MP 51.1MP 45.4MP 44.8MP
Image stabilization In-body
(lens IS combines for pitch/yaw)
Lens only In body
(lens IS takes over pitch/yaw)
(lens IS combines for pitch/yaw)
Burst rate 3 fps 3 fps (EFCS) 10 fps 12 fps (Mech)
20 fps (Elec)
Shutter speed range 60 min – 1/4000
(EFC or Mech)
60min –
1/16,000 (Electronic)
inc auto-switching mode
60 min – 1/4000
(EFC or Mech)
60min –
1/16,000 (Electronic)
inc auto-switching mode
15 min – 1/8000 30 sec – 1/8000
Flash sync 1/125 1/125 1/200 1/250 (EFCS)
1/200 (Mech)
Raw options Compressed
Lossless Comp
Lossless Comp
Lossless Comp
(all 12 or 14-bit)
Dual Pixel Raw
Lossless Comp
Compressed (14, 13 or 12-bit, depending on mode)
Top-panel display 1.8″ 69.7K dot Memory LCD
(303 x 230)
None OLED (Res not published) 16.4K dot Memory LCD
(128 x 128)
EVF 3.69M dots
0.77x Mag
3.69M dots
0.77x Mag (Equiv)
3.69M dots 0.8x Mag 5.76M dots
0.76x Mag
Rear display 3.2″ 3.69M dots
2-way tilt
3.2″ 3.69M dots
2-way tilt
3.2″ 2.1M dots
3.2″ 2.1M dots
HDR options None None None 10-bit HEIF stills
10-bit video (PQ)
Card Types 2 x UHS-II SD 2 x UHS-II SD 1x CFe Type B
1x CFe Type B
Battery life
440 / unspecified 400 / unspecified 380 / 360
(440 / 420 power save)
490 / 320 (power save)
Dimensions 150 x 104 x 87mm 161 x 97 x 66mm 134 x 101 x 70mm 139 x 98 x 88mm
Weight 900g / 31.7oz 775g / 27.3oz 705g / 24.9oz 738g / 26.0oz

Unsurprisingly, smaller sensor cameras offer faster shutter speeds and faster flash sync speeds (since their shutters don’t need to travel that far), but in most respects, the Fujifilm offers a spec. competitive and a sensor that is 70%. larger. The camera itself is a bit larger too, but not overwhelmingly, which means that for some types of shots it seems like a credible way to gain access to a larger-than-full-frame world.

Body and handling

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The GFX 50S II uses the same body as the GFX 100S, which means that it is slightly smaller and lighter than its predecessor. It also means that the only dedicated dial on the camera is an exposure mode dial. The loss of a dedicated shutter speed dial frees up space for a larger top panel display, which can be configured to display a histogram, a representation of the virtual shutter speed/aperture dials, or a customizable settings screen.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The GFX 50S II has a pair of UHS-II SD slots behind a removable door, which has rubber flanges for environmental sealing.

There are two well-placed command dials on the front and back edges of the camera, which are again customizable. Both dials can be pushed inward to toggle between their assigned functions. There’s also an AF joystick, which is larger and flatter than the one on the old 50S, and we found it more comfortable to use and easier to move precisely.

Unsurprisingly, there are plenty of customization possibilities. Eight physical buttons and four directional swipes on the rear touchscreen can be reused to provide quick access to your favorite settings. The camera’s ‘Q’ quick menu can also be modified to include the options of your choice in the order that makes the most sense to you.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

We found the exposure comp button to be a little awkwardly placed, so customized it to act as a switch (rather than needing to be held down), to make the rear command dial a full-time Exp Comp dial.


The camera retains a rear screen that can be tilted on two axes, meaning you can tilt it to shoot at waist level in both horizontal and vertical orientation. It’s still our favorite design for a focus photo camera.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The magnesium alloy construction of the body has a distinctly dense feel which, in a camera of this size, means that it ends up feeling quite heavy compared to other mirrorless cameras. Whether you perceive this weight as a sign of solid, high-quality build or an obstacle to travel, it will probably depend on how you plan to use the camera.


Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

Another area where the GFX 50S II looks more like the 100S is the use of a smaller NP-W235 battery. Despite its smaller size, it can deliver 16 Wh of power, instead of the 14 Wh of the earlier NP-T125 unit used in the older camera. This helps the Mark II deliver a battery life of 440 shots per charge, using CIPA standard test methods. As usual, it is common to get up to double this number in daily use.

The GFX 50S II comes with an external charger and can also be charged via USB.

Image Quality

Our test scene is designed to simulate a variety of textures, colors, and types of details that you will encounter in the real world. It also has two lighting modes to see the effect of different lighting conditions.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The image quality of the GFX 50S II is, unsurprisingly, very impressive. There is a level of detail that many other cameras don’t match. And its larger sensor helps deliver slightly cleaner tones than most full-frame cameras. This advantage of large sensors starts to wear off as ISO levels go up, presumably because it’s being compared to newer sensors – it’s completely gone at super high ISOs.

The JPEG color response is very good, and thanks to a wide selection of fairly subtle film simulation modes and decent processing, Fujifilm arguably delivers some of the best off-camera results of any medium format camera, lo which can be useful even if you just plan to use them as proofs or as a starter guide for your edits.

We suspect the 50S II has the same micro-lens design as previous 50MP Fujifilm models, with pixel gaps to increase pixel pitch that emphasizes (exaggerate?) Sharpness. This carries the risk of moiré in very high-frequency patterns, but it is no worse than its peers, and it seems to clean up well in JPEG, so it shouldn’t be disastrous.

Dynamic range

In terms of dynamic range, the sensor works very well. An ISO 100 file pushed 6 stops shows only slightly more noise than an ISO 6400 image taken with the same exposure (the difference derived from electronic noise, reading). This is a pretty good result, giving the option in low-light and high-contrast situations to remove the ISO setting to retain the highlights, rather than amplify them to the point where they are clipped. You can do this knowing that brightening the rest of the image will not reveal a lot of additional noise.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The camera’s DR400 mode used the exposure associated with ISO 400 but with the level of amplification typically used for an ISO 100 shot, helping to protect the highlights of the sunset. The foreground was then brightened and warmed, to better represent my memory of the scene.

At base ISO, if you lower the exposure to capture additional reflections, you can extract detail from very deep shadows if necessary. There will be a noise cost due to reduced exposure, but while the results are not as clean as on the GFX 100S, you can go deep into files without being inundated with noise. This performance is better than most full-frame cameras, but it’s worth noting that the Nikon Z7 II’s ISO 64 setting can always be shot with 2 / 3EV more exposure (with the same shutter speed and depth of field as the GFX), and offers comparable results, down to the deepest shadows.

Image stabilization

What our test scene doesn’t show is the impact of image stabilization. It is one thing to be able to obtain maximum sharpness (or something very similar) with the camera mounted on a heavy tripod, but quite another to do it repeatedly in the real world. We spent three weeks traveling with the 50S II, without a tripod, and we have not had to worry about camera shake in any of the images captured. The stabilization of the 50S II does not improve image quality itself, but it does significantly expand the circumstances in which you will get the best out of the camera.


Autofocus is the GFX’s most significant flaw. Fujifilm says that using a newer processor makes it faster than previous 50MP models, but without the distance-aware phase-detection AF of the 100MP models, it’s still pretty slow. Given advancements in autofocus speed, performance tracking, and ease of use elsewhere on the market, the GFX 50S II feels significantly off the beat.

It can be argued that the higher resolution capabilities of medium format lenses are a legitimate trade-off for the slower focus that comes from having to move more glass, but the GFX 100 series has shown that it doesn’t have to be that slow. Some GF lens designs are faster than others, but all are more agile on the GFX 100 models.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The camera’s eye detection AF can place the focus perfectly on the eye, but it only does so in S-AF, so won’t refocus if your subject is moving. It’s also much more prone to losing its subject than most rival systems, which makes it difficult to depend on.


The other problem is the reliability of the face and eye detection system. The GFX 50S II can detect faces and eyes, but it only seems to do so when the subject is in front of you fairly directly and has a tendency to lose the subject if you look down, away, or close your eyes. It’s also unusually prone to finding faces in the scene where they don’t exist, which likely leads some people to simply disable the mode entirely. It can also only detect eyes when in single acquisition AF, which means it won’t try to refocus if the subject moves.

The latest cameras from other brands can be fixed on the face closest to the chosen AF point and then stick to that person tenaciously, even if they are looking away or obscured by another subject. That’s not the case here, and we often found it more reliable to manually position the finer AF point, rather than trying to rely on Eye AF – a more time-consuming process that requires your subject to hold your pose for you.


Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The GFX 50S II’s video isn’t one of its greatest strengths but it’s perfectly usable and includes a decent array of support tools, including headphone and mic sockets.


Using the older 50MP sensor means that the GFX 50S II doesn’t get the 4K video capabilities of the GFX 100S, despite the amount of other hardware they share. So while the 50S II has a dedicated switch for stills/movies, mic and headphone jacks, and the touchscreen ‘Optimized Movie Control’, its video performance is nothing special.

Video maxes out at 1080 / 30p, though there are real 23.98 and 24p options if you prefer. The camera also offers digital stabilization, which is combined with correction on the body and on the lens to allow handheld shooting with movement.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II reviewFujifilm GFX 50S II review

The 1080 footage from the camera is not bad at all, even compared to cameras that are very good at Full HD, and there is no major quality loss when applying the digital IS (and the 1.1x crop that comes with it. ). But most of its rivals, and its big brother, will happily shoot 4K footage (which typically lowers the resolution to give a very good 1080), so we think the 50S II’s video is probably not a big part of the appeal. the camera for prospective buyers.


What we like What we don’t
  • Some of the best image quality available
  • In-body stabilization extends circumstances in which you’ll get maximum resolution
  • Film Simulations give attractive processing options
  • Comparatively small and light
  • Dual-tilt LCD is excellent for portrait orientation shooting
  • Least expensive digital medium format camera ever
  • Well-thought-out video features
  • Matched card slots mean you only need one type of card
  • USB charging is convenient
  • Face/eye detection is not as dependable as in rivals (and no eye detection in C-AF)
  • Autofocus isn’t the quickest
  • ‘Quick AF’ mode drains the battery faster
  • Video is only Full HD (no 4K)
  • Exposure Comp needs its own button, even if you want to use a dial
  • Multi-shot mode very sensitive to the movement of the camera or subject

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

This review was created based on experience using a pre-production GFX 50S II with f / w v1.0. While there may be slight differences between this sample and a final shipping chamber, we are confident that they will not significantly affect our findings. As such, in consultation with Fujifilm, we have chosen to give the GFX 50S II a score and will review our findings if necessary once a final production camera is available.

The GFX 50S II takes a familiar sensor and mounts it to Fujifilm’s more refined GF body. This combination provides the company’s first 50MP image-stabilized model while also making it the lowest-priced medium format digital camera ever released. Clearly, this will be a tempting prospect for anyone who has ever dreamed of going beyond the 135 formats.

And it makes a very powerful combination, especially when paired with the surprisingly capable 35-70mm F4.5-5.6 zoom lens. It’s no bigger than some full-frame DSLRs and makes a great studio or landscape camera. Its solid construction and direct control make it a very satisfying camera to shoot with and the end results stand up to the closest scrutiny.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

The GFX 50S II won’t make you a better landscape photographer, but it can make the most of any shots you take.

However, its relatively slow contrast detection autofocus and rather a fickle face/eye detection mean the GFX 50S II is far less adept at portraits, especially if your style tends toward the spontaneous/candid. Its slow AF and 3fps maximum shutter speed essentially rule it out for sports and action work, where high-resolution full-frame cameras do it better and better.

The fundamental challenge of the 50S II is that there is no inherent magic or special “look” in the medium format (even if you switch to the larger 52 x 44mm ‘~ 645’ format). The same logic that establishes an equivalency between smaller sensors works just as effectively for large sensors: light and geometry work the same way, independently. So while the GFX’s 70% larger full-frame sensor provides a benefit of about 2 / 3EV over the smaller format (with the same F-number and shutter speed), there are full-frame cameras that can recover some of that advantage. The difference is that the latest full-frame cameras can focus faster, shoot faster, are much better at eye/face AF, and cost less money.

Fujifilm GFX 50S II review

It’s hard to argue with the levels of detail the GFX 50S II is capable of, even when shot hand-held using a collapsible ‘kit’ zoom. Note the seagull.


That said, the larger lenses needed for larger sensors will find it easier to resolve any given frequency in the scene. This, combined with the 50S II’s micro-lens design, which increases apparent sharpness (at the cost of some aliasing), means that the GFX 50S II delivers truly stunningly sharp images. And this adds to the tonal quality and dynamic range at the upper limit of what the full-frame can achieve.

Ultimately, compared to some full-frame competitors, the GFX 50S II is not the most rational choice, even for landscape and studio photographers. But its slow discomfort, compared to a full-frame that does everything, has a certain charm. And so often it delivers great image quality that I fully recognize how someone can end up loving it. If you’re buying with your head and on an extra budget, the GFX 100S makes a lot more sense (a newer, more efficient sensor, more resolution, and better autofocus), but the 50S II you buy in a range of great lenses and often makes photography feel special. And what is the price of that?

Compared to

If you want to fully experience the benefit that a 44 x 33mm sensor offers over the full-frame, the Fujifilm GFX 100S is a stronger candidate. Its 100MP resolution really shows what Fujinon GF lenses can do, and its on-sensor phase detection means the whole experience is a bit faster. A newer, more efficient sensor offers a slight increase in image quality beyond the pixel count and reads fast enough to offer a much more capable video camera. It may be more expensive than the 50MP model, but the benefit over its rivals is much clearer.

The Nikon Z7 II is the camera that represents the greatest challenge for the GFX 50S II because it’s ISO 64 mode allows it to tolerate 2 / 3EV more exposure than the Fujifilm. You can shoot the Nikon with a 2 / 3EV wider aperture and get the same depth of field and the same amount of light throughout the image. This provides directly comparable quality in terms of noise, dynamic range, and tonal quality throughout the image (in practice, as well as in principle). Nikon’s range of Z-mount lenses contains some impressive options and Nikon’s AF speed, video capabilities and overall responsiveness make it a much more flexible alternative, at a lower cost.

The Canon EOS R5 cannot match Fujifilm’s image quality at base ISO, so the landscape and studio photographers will gain something by opting for Fujifilm’s larger sensor (it’s a similar story for Sony’s a7R IV). But portrait photographers are likely to appreciate Canon’s excellent Eye AF system, which is faster to use and much more reliable than the GFX. Again, speed, video features (including 8K capture), and overall flexibility are on Canon’s side, if you’re willing to give up that extra margin of basic ISO image quality.


The GFX 50S II is Fujifilm’s least expensive and most refined 50MP medium format camera yet. Image stabilization increases the variety of circumstances in which it can be used, helping it deliver image quality at the extreme of what the full-frame is capable of. It’s not the fastest camera on the market, but it can make photography feel special and will deliver the best results on this side of Fujifilm’s 100MP models if you’re taking the type of photos where it’s strongest.