Fujifilm X-Pro2 versus X-T2: Seven key differences
In the X-T2 and X-Pro2, Fujifilm offers two flagship cameras that have a lot in common, but are designed for slightly different purposes. So which one should you buy? We’ve broken down the key differences.
Let’s get probably the biggest differentiator out of the way right up front – the X-T2 offers 4K video, while the X-Pro2 makes do with standard HD. The addition of 4K to the X-T2 surprised us a little when we first saw it on the spec sheet, but it’s clear that Fujifilm sees this feature as an important ‘must have’ in a camera as versatile as the X-T2. The X-T2 can record video in clips up to 10min duration, or 30min when the optional power booster grip is attached.
The X-Pro2, on the other hand, is meant for a different kind of photographer – one who is more stills-oriented, and more likely to shoot with prime lenses than zooms. The addition of 4K to the X-Pro2 would have certainly increased its cost – and the engineers tell us that it would also have increased its size and weight as a consequence of the necessity for a beefed-up heat sink. So if you need 4K, the X-T2 is the camera for you.
Rear LCD screen
The X-Pro2, being the more ‘traditional’ of the two cameras, has a simple, fixed rear LCD. In contrast, and in keeping with its ultra-versatile ‘do anything’ design philosophy, the X-T2 features a complex, multi-articulating screen that enables easy framing from high and low angles in both landscape and portrait orientations. This articulating design is also more useful for video work.
The decision by Fujifilm (which actually manufactures capacitive membranes for touchscreens) not to include touch sensitivity in either camera is a little disappointing. Also a bit odd is the resolution difference between the screens on the back of the X-T2 and X-Pro2. The X-Pro2’s screen resolution is 1.6 million dots – somewhat higher than the 1.04 million-dot screen on the back of the X-T2 (it’s the difference between 900 x 600 rather than 720 x 480 pixels).
So in summary: If you want screen articulation, go for the X-T2. If you don’t mind a fixed screen, you’ll get slightly higher resolution from the X-Pro2.
At a quick glance, the electronic viewfinder specifications of the X-Pro2 and X-T2 are very similar. Both are centered around the same 2.36 million-dot OLED display, and both offer a window on the world that is both sharp and detailed. But the X-T2’s electronic viewfinder is the better of the two, for a couple of important reasons.
First is the addition of ‘burst mode’ to the X-T2, which increases the refresh rate of the live view image in the camera’s viewfinder to 100fps. And second is the complex optical assembly (shown above) that focuses the viewfinder’s image into your eye. The X-T2’s EVF is one of the best electronic finder that we’ve ever used. Its unusually high magnification of 0.77X and 100% frame coverage place it a level above the 92% coverage and 0.60X of the X-Pro2.
But before we dismiss the X-Pro2 altogether…
The X-Pro has one major trick up its sleeve – its viewfinder is a ‘hybrid’ type, that also offers a rangefinder-style optical view, which employs frame-lines to preview composition.
The difference between an optical and electronic viewfinder experience is hard to explain until you’ve compared them directly, but if you’re shooting with prime lenses between 28 and 50mm equivalent, the X-Pro2’s optical finder is a delight. Electronic manual focus assist in optical finder mode is an added bonus. The X-T2’s fully electronic finder is a better choice if you’re primarily a zoom lens user.
While the basic control logic of the X-T2 and X-Pro2 is very similar (and more or less standard across the entire X-series) the two cameras are ergonomically quite different. The rangefinder-style X-Pro2’s viewfinder is positioned off to the left of the camera (with its back facing you) while the X-T2’s finder sits in a DSLR-style ‘hump’ in line with the lens axis.
Which of these designs appeals more to you is a matter of personal preference (skip back to the previous slide for a better explanation of the technical differences between the two cameras’ viewfinders) but the experience of shooting with them is subtly different as a result.
The X-Pro2 (shown above) is designed with stills shooters primarily in mind, and more specifically, stills shooters who like to use prime lenses. The X-Pro2 doesn’t handle quite as well with Fujifilm’s longer, heavier zooms, whereas these are the kinds of lenses that the X-T2 is specifically designed to be paired with. With the optional power booster grip attached, the X-T2 balances nicely, even with Fujifilm’s beefiest lenses. And of course, that grip also duplicates key controls for vertical format shooting.
Of these two cameras, the X-T2 is the faster. Designed to cater to the needs of sports and action photographers the X-T2 boasts a maximum continuous shooting rate of 8 fps, with continuous autofocus. This can be increased to 11 fps in boost mode, with the optional grip. The fastest framerate with live view maintained is less, at 5 fps, but this is still plenty fast enough for most subjects. In fully electronic shutter mode, maximum framerate caps out at 14 fps.
The X-Pro2, in contrast, is limited to 8 fps with autofocus, and a mere 3 fps with live view maintained in the viewfinder.
These are different horses designed for different courses. The speed-oriented X-T2 also boasts a USB 3.0 interface, capable of considerably greater data transfer rates than the USB 2.0 interface of the X-Pro 2. In addition both the X-T2’s SD card slots are compatible with the latest UHS-II interface type, whereas only the #1 slot of the X-Pro2 can make full use of these cards.
As well as increasing the X-T2’s speed and duplicating its controls for vertical format shooting, the optional power booster grip also triples the camera’s battery life. It’s not magic – the grip simply accommodates an additional two batteries, bringing the total number of available cells to three. Hence three times the endurance, to a rated ~1000 exposures.
The X-Pro2 lacks an accessory grip, and endurance caps out at around 250 exposures with the EVF, and ~350 when the optical finder is used (CIPA ratings in all cases).
The X-T2 incorporates Fujifilm’s most advanced autofocus system yet. It boasts 325 AF points (169 of which offer phase detection) which work in concert to offer a ‘hybrid’ autofocus system. Extensive customization of the X-T2’s continuous autofocus performance is made possible with Canon-style AF setting ‘sets’.
For now, the X-T2’s AF is superior to the very similar system found in the X-Pro2, but this is Fujifilm we’re talking about – the most firmware updatey company of them all (except perhaps Samsung – RIP). As such, we’re told that the X-Pro2’s autofocus system will be brought up to par with the X-T2’s in terms of baseline performance by way of a firmware update scheduled for autumn.
Note that the X-T2’s AF-C customization options (above) will remain unique to this model though, meaning that the X-T2 will remain a better choice if AF performance – or action photography in general – are your priorities.
Which one should you buy?
If you’re in the market for a new camera and the Fujifilm X-Pro2 and X-T2 are on your list, chances are that both will keep you pretty happy. As far as image quality is concerned, we’re very pleased by the output from their 24MP APS-C sensor, and in video mode, both models are lightyears ahead of previous-generation X-series cameras. The X-T2 scores over the X-Pro2 in terms of video simply by the addition of a pretty impressive 4K specification, and both cameras produce good-looking HD footage.
Beyond the basics, the X-Pro2 is probably a better choice for prime lens photographers, thanks to its off-center hybrid viewfinder which offers both electronic and optical viewing options. If you mostly shoot candids, street portraits or non-moving subjects in general, its lower maximum shooting rate, (slightly) more basic AF system and non-articulating LCD screen might not bother you at all.
In contrast, the faster, more action-oriented X-T2 is a better all-rounder. It can take pictures more quickly, its viewfinder can refresh more quickly, the rear LCD articulates in useful ways, and with the optional power booster grip attached, it offers a vastly better battery life. It’s also much more comfortable to use with Fujifilm’s heavier zoom lenses than the boxier X-Pro2.
Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments.