This latest version of Fujifilm’s higher-end X-T model sports a lot of new features and upgrades, generally under the hood, as the exterior design is strikingly similar to the X-T2. The imaging pipeline gets a big overhaul, with a new 26MP BSI X-Trans APS-C sensor and an all-new quad-core image processor, and at the same time, the AF system has undergone a significant upgrade with faster tracking performance, more AF points and better coverage across the sensor, and improved low-light AF sensitivity. It adds up to quite a bit improved!
The exterior gets minimal refinements, and the chassis structure is a bit beefier than the predecessor. But overall, Fujifilm appears to have taken an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach to the X-T3’s design, and we’re okay with that because it’s a really great one. It has lots of external controls, and a compact yet robustly weather-sealed style that’s still comfortable to hold.
Check Out: Best Lenses for Fujifilm X-T3
Fujifilm X-T3 Price, Deals & Discounts
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Overall, the Fuji X-T3 can be an extremely versatile camera, featuring fantastic picture quality and performance, making it well-suited for lots of different types of photography. What’s more, is the fact that Fujifilm priced this camera very aggressively; despite the fact that this is one of their flagship APS-C models, the X-T3’s $1500 price point not only makes it more affordable for a wider range of photographers but it’s also less expensive than an amount of competing mirrorless cameras, such as the smaller-sensor Olympus E-M1 Mark II.
Fujifilm X-T3: Design & Ergonomics
As mentioned, not a lot has changed when it comes to the X-T3’s structure or overall design compared to the previous model, save for some slight toughness improvements to the lens mount and base of the camera. As before, there are numerous buttons and dials, a majority of which are exhaustively customizable. What’s more, with the X-T3’s new touchscreen display, also swipe gestures are used as customizable functions. There’s also a new, higher-res OLED EVF that looks outstanding.
The X-T3 maintains that special blend of retro SLR styling with modern tech and features. Like most Fujifilm cameras, the X-T3 uses independent exposure dials in place of a traditional PASM mode dial. The lack of a PASM mode dial might be somewhat confusing for first-time Fuji owners, but you’ll quickly get utilized the “Fuji way” of changing exposure modes (which many of us at IR basically love).
Fujifilm X-T3: Image Quality & Video
There’s not much to complain about with regards to the X-T3’s image quality. Fujifilm’s APS-C cameras have a long history of excellent picture quality performance, at both low and high ISOs, and the X-T3 is certainly no exception. The X-T3’s all-fresh 26MP X-Trans CMOS IV sensor offers a modest upgrade in resolving power when compared to 24MP X-T2 and offers a native ISO range with a slightly lower bottom ISO of 160. At low ISOs, the X-T3’s images are sharpened, clean and filled with lots of fine detail as well as nice, vibrant shades. As usual, Fujifilm’s unique Film Simulations are pleasurable and, in fact, are a great way to make pleasing images straight from the camera without having to use any editing (plus, with in-camera raw processing, you can even try multiple film simulations from a single shot).
When it comes to high ISO quality, given the history of Fujifilm’s APS-C X-Trans cameras and the fact that the X-T3 right now uses a backside-illuminated sensor, it’s no surprise that this camera does a fantastic job at low-light and high ISO image quality. In our testing, the X-T3 produced very clean, detailed images up to ISO 800, and we only really observed objectionable noise levels at ISO 12,800 and higher. Much like the X-T2, the new X-T3 does an excellent job at print quality as well, even offering a nice 8 x 10 inch print, for instance, up until ISO 12,800. Interestingly, even though, we did see slightly higher noise amounts in the X-T3’s pictures (both in JPEGs and natural files) compared to the X-T2’s, which is perhaps due to the greatly enhanced PDAF program and/or faster readout overall performance. Nevertheless, the X-T3 continues Fujifilm’s tradition of exceptional high ISO efficiency for an APS-C camera.
Early Fujifilm X-Trans digital cameras struggled with video quality, often displaying odd artifacts, but the X-T3’s video quality is excellent. Things have definitely changed. 4K video is normally crisp and detailed with radiant, rich colors. As with stills, video mode lets you enjoy Fujifilm’s nifty Film Simulations, but there’s F-Log as well for those who want more control over their footage for post-processing. We still noticed some rolling shutter artifacts in X-T3 4K footage, but compared to that from the X-T2, there’s significantly less from the X-T3, at least in 4K 24p footage.
Further upping the video quality may be the ability to record in 4:2:0 10-bit internally, however, the quality difference between 8-bit and 10-bit is extremely slight if at all noticeable if you’re recording video without F-Log. The main benefit to the 10-little bit is better color reproduction with smoother transitions between similar tones (gradients), which actually only becomes apparent once you color grade Log footage. With the straight-out-of-camera non-Log footage we shot, we were unable to spot any significant difference between an 8-little bit and a 10-bit video.
Fujifilm X-T3: Autofocus & Performance
In addition to its imaging pipeline, the X-T3 sports a vastly upgraded autofocus system with faster overall speed and tracking capabilities, improved low-light performance and more on-chip phase-detect pixels and also 100 even more selectable AF points compared to the X-T2. Both in the lab and out in the field, the X-T3’s autofocus efficiency was top-notch. Single-shot AF was swift, and C-AF was equally impressive. Like the X-T2 before it, there are several C-AF presets that let you dial-in focus tracking functionality according to the subject type and your shooting scenario. While the presets will help AF tracking performance in specific situations, we found that even the standard/default general-make use of AF monitoring preset performed really well. The X-T3 did an excellent job with subject tracking even with straight-on moving targets.
There’s little use in having a camera that’s great at subject monitoring if there are no continuous shooting capabilities to move alongside it, and thankfully the X-T3 is no slouch in this regard either. With both high-velocity and low-speed constant burst rates, each with their very own adjustable frames-per-second settings as well as a cropped burst setting that climbs up to 30fps, the X-T3 provides a dizzying array of shooting settings for capturing action subjects of all speeds. Thanks to its brand-new, super-fast quad-core image processor and dual UHS-II SD card support, the X-T3 combines fast burst shooting with good buffer depths and reasonably fast clearing instances. Plus, the X-T3 today enables you to access all continuous shooting rates and enable its “Boost” performance model without the need for the add-on battery pack grip as you did with the X-T2 (with the X-T2 you weren’t able to access its fastest burst prices without the Grasp and Boost Mode).
Fujifilm X-T3: Summary
Overall, the Fujifilm X-T3 is a very impressive, very well-rounded camera, for both photos and videos. Despite its stylish exterior, the X-T3 is usually a serious camera with serious picture quality and performance features — and all for one seriously excellent price. The image quality is excellent at low and higher ISOs and is definitely one of the best APS-C cameras we’ve ever come across in this respect. The X-T2 already offered a major overhaul to the X-T1’s AF program, and the X-T3 goes even further with even more AF points, a better rate, and better tracking overall performance, making the X-T3 a fantastic camera for sports activities, wildlife and all manner of subjects. Video AF is quite smooth and pleasing, as well.
There’s not a lot to complain about with the X-T3. Having less in-body picture stabilization is, probably, the most prominent missing feature here. Many Fuji lenses have got optical stabilization, however, the addition of IBIS would have been convenient, allowing for even more powerful stabilization with OIS lenses or simply having IS with any lens you use. The X-H1 is currently the only Fujifilm ILC available to offer IBIS, and we would have loved to discover that tech in the X-T3. Other drawbacks are a lot more minor, such as some of the buttons and dials feeling small and somewhat flimsy, and the touchscreen not being simply because responsive as we’d like. But again, the price is incredible, which means you can’t have everything!