Fujifilm X-T5 Review: An Honest Review by a Real User

Fujifilm X-T5 Review
Fujifilm X-T5 Review
Fujifilm X-T5 Review

I finally upgraded to the Fujifilm X-T5 after getting my hands on one through Fujifilm’s loan programme. Everything seemed right about this camera – improved resolution, in-body image stabilisation and a few tweaks in line with my preferences, all wrapped in a stylish body. Upgrading means this now tops my list of travel photography gear and forms part of my minimalist travel photography gear.

The Fujifilm X-T5 isn’t Fujifilm’s flagship camera, but it’s a big hitter when you consider what you get in a tiny, lightweight body at a decent price point. The X-T5 is good value for money, especially compared to Sony and Canon’s high-end cameras. And Fujifilm has rolled back the size and weight of the X-T5, which I also welcome. So, how does it perform as a travel photographer’s camera?

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2, 1/6000 sec, 125 ISO

Fujifilm X-T5 Review

Within the first couple of weeks of getting my hands on the X-T5, I’d taken it to Lincoln, Trentham Monkey Forest, Brussels, Roupell Street and Portobello Road and given it a good run out to put it through its paces, and below are my thoughts and feelings about the camera, plus a few technical bits for you kit pests out there.

What I love

+ Small & light

+ Great design

+ Impressive In-Body Image Stabilisation

+ 3-Way tilt screen

+ Super fast shutter speed

What I don’t love

– Q button & Stills to Movie dial locations

– Huge files

– No way to add FORMAT to MY MENU

– Photometry (metering) linked to AF detection

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/4, 1/950 sec, 125 ISO

Fujifilm X-T5 Review First Impressions & Notes

First impressions are nothing less than I would expect from Fujifilm. Having been a Fuji user for a long time and fluent with the Fuji X-T2, the X-T5 felt at home in my hands. Despite some differences between the X-T2 and the X-T5, I could turn the camera on and get on shooting without any faff. That’s one of the things I love about Fuji – they are generally no-nonsense.

Interestingly, Fujifilm has also stopped rolling out stand-alone battery chargers with the X-T5. Instead, you charge the camera via a USB-C cable. I suppose this bit depends on how you feel about not having a charger, but for me, it’s helpful because it means I require less equipment to keep the camera functioning. My other devices are USB-C, and I can plug the cable into the camera and charge between shoots from a plug socket, battery pack or even in the campervan.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2, 1/35 sec, 500 ISO

Fujifilm X-T5 Build

The X-T5 has 56 weather-sealed points to keep dust and moisture out and can operate in temperatures as low as -10°C, meaning it can go most places with you. The camera also retains the classic look and feel of the X Series, with its top dials. This feature makes you instantly cool, of course. It’s also a feature I love about Fujifilm – their styling is somewhat iconic.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/3.6, 1/320 sec, 125 ISO

One of the factors that prevented me from upgrading to the X-T4 was the fully articulating screen. So, Fujifilm has made a good move with the X-T5 by removing it and replacing it with a 3-way tilting screen. Fuji claims the X-T5 to be a ‘photography-first’, which is music to my ears. I’ve never got on with the fully articulating screen on my work Canon R5. It requires more effort to get out, put away and use and is more of a hindrance than a help when shooting. I’m not a vlogger or videographer, or rarely in front of the camera. I’m a photographer, and I prefer the simplicity of a 3-way tilting screen. So, well done, Fujifilm.

However, screen protection concerns me, given I’ve smashed a screen before, and the 3-way tilting screen is constantly exposed. To solve this, I bought a screen protector, just like on my mobile phone, which has done a great job protecting the screen.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2, 1/35 sec, 250 ISO

They’ve also rolled back the size and weight from the X-T4, knocking a whopping 50 grams off. Ha! It doesn’t sound much, and it isn’t, but any weight removed can only be a good thing for a travel photographer. This is one of the best factors for me. Fuji put the fun into shooting because they are so small and light, yet provide high performance and quality results. I take my camera almost everywhere with me, and not once has the weight been an issue, unlike my work full frame cameras, mirrorless or DSLR.

But it’s not all good news, of course. Fuji has made some mistakes with the body, which I’m not a massive fan of, which is buttonology. They have placed the Q (Quick) button right by the thumb rest, which is sometimes annoying. It’s easily pressed, which brings up the Quick menu. It’s easily remedied by half-pressing the shutter release to get rid of it, but it’s annoying nonetheless. This change came on the X-T4, and Fuji hasn’t seen the sense of changing it back to how it was on the X-T3 and X-T2.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/4, 1/30 sec, 800 ISO

I can’t be the only person who isn’t keen on its positioning. Thankfully, you can change the Q button to another and disable the inconveniently located one. Then there’s the Stills / Movie dial, which I’ve knocked once or twice and flicked the camera to video. A minor but annoying point nonetheless. I would prefer a lock on it, like the top dials, which have a button to lock or release the dial.

Fujifilm X-T5 Performance

There are no complaints about the Fujifilm X-T5’s performance. The X-T5 performs well; there’s no doubt about that, and it performs how I would expect it to – better than any previous model. The higher-resolution sensor is excellent. It keeps up with market trends and offers generous enough resolution for ample cropping. The sensor also kicks out classic Fuji colours, which these cameras have become renowned for. And even at high ISOs, it provides useable results.

Fujifilm says, “The high-resolution 40.2MP X-Trans CMOS 5 HR sensor has an enhanced image-processing algorithm that boosts resolution without compromising the signal-to-noise ratio, delivering astonishing image quality.” Does it? Who knows, but it’s a good sensor. It’s also a BSI sensor, which stands for Back Side Illuminated sensor. Amazing stuff.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2, 1/35 sec, 640 ISO

Having said that, I have one small problem with the sensor: the file sizes. They are huge! An average raw file is 80-100MB, which I don’t like. Thankfully, the X-T5 offers three levels of raw files – uncompressed, lossless compressed and compressed. Is there a difference between the files? Not one that you will notice other than the size. Thankfully, the compressed versions offer all the flexibility of editing an uncompressed raw file, such as adjusting the white balance, but the beauty of a smaller file size.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/3.6, 1/1250 sec, 125 ISO

Of more interest to me – the Fuji X-T5 will allow you to shoot up to 180,000th of a second using the electronic shutter. Why is that important? Because, if you’re anything like me who shoots almost exclusively wide open, it allows you to shoot wide open on fast lenses, like the Sigma 56mm, in really bright conditions without the need for a neutral density filter.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2.8, 1/450 sec, 125 ISO

Eye Detection and Autofocus Tracking

Let’s talk autofocus. The X Series has never been known for its autofocus. It’s never been bad, maybe just not as good as the likes of Sony’s. Standard AF has always been solid, but the tracking has never been so great. However, The Fujifilm X-T5’s autofocus is better than any previous X-T model. And let’s face it – it’s possible to shoot great pictures on older cameras with less capable autofocus, but decent AF makes things a bit easier.

There are many things to consider with eye-tracking autofocus and your need for it. The lens has to have decent autofocus, too. Then there’s the aperture and depth of field to think about, and then there’s the speed at which your subject is moving, plus its direction. A subject travelling from left to right doesn’t require the autofocus to refocus like it does when travelling towards you. Do you want it to track moving subjects or pick up an eye on a static subject, for example?

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2.8, 1/8 sec, 800 ISO

So, is the Fujifilm X-T5 eye-tracking autofocus good? Yes, it appears it is. Consider the picture of the pigeon below, taken in Brussels. Pigeon heads move when they walk, a bit like a chicken. The photo was also taken at the lens’s widest possible aperture of f/1.4, and it was also taken at relatively close proximity. As you may know, the factors that affect depth of field are focal length, distance to subject and aperture. In this case, the depth of field is narrow, yet the Fuji X-T5 did a great job focusing on the pigeon’s eye.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/1.4, 1/1100 sec, 125 ISO

And here are some macaque monkeys playing around at Trentham Monkey Forest. The Fuji X-T5’s autofocus did a great job of capturing them playing around. Not every shot was sharp, but most were, and the camera provided more than enough useable results. And it’s done an excellent job with my cats. It captures the eyes perfectly every time.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f2.8, 1/2700 sec, 125 ISO

I’ve noticed that eye-tracking only works near where your autofocus point is. It won’t focus when single-point autofocus is selected, and the subject is too far away from the AF point. The smaller the single point, the closer the proximity needs to be, too. On that note – I like how you can change the size of the AF point. And interestingly, the camera disregards what it can’t recognise, too. That means it won’t focus on another animal’s eye if it’s set to birds and can’t see birds, which is what it should do. I always thought these things were a bit of a gimmick, but it appears they aren’t!

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2.8, 1/210 sec, 125 ISO

I have discovered one thing I don’t like about the X-T5 eye detection and AF tracking. When eye, face or subject tracking is on, photometry (metering) can’t be changed. So, you can’t change it from matrix to spot, for example. It’s not been a problem most of the time, but I noticed the exposure changed rapidly when the lighting on the subject changed. Given the lighting, I assume the photometry set in a detection setting is spot. It’s a problem I have only seen once in very contrasty light, but a problem nonetheless, and I can’t understand why it exists. Why can’t the photometry be changed in these detection modes, Fujifilm?

And here’s one last note on the X-T5 autofocus that I’ve come to notice after months of using it. The X-T5 seems to ‘hunt’ when looking at very bright subjects. I thought it was a problem with the Sigma 56mm because that’s when I first noticed it. However, that’s not the case. It happens on any lens. The camera always focuses after hunting in these particular situations, but it’s annoying that it hunts in the first place. It is a small problem that could be addressed with a firmware update, no doubt, but up to press, it hasn’t.

Fujifilm Eye Detection

IBIS

In-Body Image Stabilisation (IBIS) is a game changer for me. Many prime lenses I use lack any form of stabilisation, so the IBIS is a great help, especially in low light. To put this into perspective, I can now handhold for half a second on the 35mm prime on a static subject.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2, 0.3/sec, 125 ISO

Why is that useful? Because it enables me to shoot at far lower ISOs. As a general rule of thumb, shooting at the same shutter speed as the focal length helps reduce camera shake. So, in the best-case scenario on a 35mm lens, I can save four stops in ISO (assuming I start on 1/30 sec). For example, that could be the difference between shooting at 12800 ISO or 800 ISO. A significant difference, indeed.

And when you couple it with a lens such as the Fujifilm 50-140mm, there is a ton of stabilisation available between the body and the lens – up to six stops, according to Fujifilm.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2.8, 1/30 sec, 2000 ISO

Fujifilm X-T5 Specifications

Below are the basic specifications for the X-T5 in a handy table, plus a few other things that might interest you. Head to Fujifilm for the full spec breakdown.

  • Dual UHS-II compatibility SD card slots
  • HEIF image file format
  • 19 film simulation modes
  • 160MP Pixel Shift Multi-Shot
  • F-Log2 video support
Lens MountFujifilm X Mount
Image Sensor23.5mm x 15.7mm (APS-C) X-Trans CMOS 5 HR with a primary colour filter
Sensor Pixels40.2 million
Image ProcessorX-Processor 5
ISO Sensitivity125 – 12800, extendable to 51200
Image stabiliser7 stops, image sensor shift mechanism with 5-axis
Shutter TypeFocal Plane, mechanical and electronic
Shutter Speed30 sec – 1/8000 sec (mechanical)
30 sec – 1/180000 (electronic)
Frames Per SecondUp to 20
DimensionsWidth: 129.5mm
Height: 91mm
Depth: 63.8mm
WeightApprox. 557g with battery and memory card
Touch ScreenYes, Shooting, AF, Focus Area etc.
ViewfinderElectronic, approx. 3.69 million dots
Monitor3-inch 3-way tilting, approx. 1.84 million dots
WirelessYes, via the app
Battery lifeUp to 740 frames in economy mode
Weather sealingYes, 56 points
What’s in the box?Li-ion battery NP-W235
AC power adapter AC-5VJ
Plug adapter
USB cable
Headphone adapter
Shoulder strap
Body cap
Hot shoe cover
Sync terminal cover

Verdict

The Fujifilm X-T5 is a great camera; there’s no doubt about that. It’s also a reasonable price for a camera that competes with other manufacturers’ high-end cameras at over twice the price. It’s also small and light, making it a great companion for any serious traveller, travel photographer or anyone interested in minimalist travel photography gear. I’m glad I took the leap and upgraded. The extra features, such as the higher resolution sensor and in-body image stabilisation, offer a new level of flexibility that has already proven useful. If you’re looking to upgrade your camera and want high-end specs packed into a small body at a reasonable price that looks great, this camera might be the one for you.

There are minor points that bug me, such as the photometry linked to the AF point when in eye-tracking, but aside from that, I’m satisfied with the camera and thoroughly enjoy using it.

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Fujifilm X-T5 Review – f/2.2, 1/35 sec, 2500 ISO

FAQs

Is it worth upgrading to the Fujifilm X-T5?

This would depend on your current camera model and what you require from an upgrade. The in-body image stabilisation, higher resolution sensor and size and weight are the most significant selling points of the Fujifilm X-T5, making it the perfect camera for travel photography.

If your body doesn’t have image stabilisation or you’re looking for a more user-friendly camera, the X-T5 might be for you.

Is the Fujifilm X-T5 a good camera?

Yes, the Fujifilm X-T5 is a superb camera. There are a ton of high-end features packed into a small and lightweight body that competes with the flagship cameras of other manufacturers at much higher prices. It’s not without a few minor faults, but no camera is, despite what the specs tell you.

How to add FORMAT to MY MENU on FujiFilm?

There isn’t an option on the X-T5 to add the FORMAT option to MY MENU. To format the cards, press and hold the bin/delete button and rear the command dial at the same time, and it will take you straight to the menu to format either slot. Alternatively, you can enter USER SETTING > FORMAT in the menus.

Fujifilm X-T5 Review

  1. Fujifilm X-T5 Review
  2. Fujifilm X-T5 Review First Impressions & Notes
  3. Fujifilm X-T5 Build
  4. Fujifilm X-T5 Performance
  5. Fujifilm X-T5 Specifications
  6. Verdict
Fujifilm X-T5 Review

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10 thoughts on “Fujifilm X-T5 Review: An Honest Review by a Real User

  1. Pingback: Uncompressed Raw Vs Compressed Raw: 2 Reasons Compressed Raw Is Better | The Bumper Crew

  2. Larry Sumners

    Quality of the photos are great when in focus. I have owned two xt5 and they both exhibit problems with focusing on the wide end of zooms. It is amazing to me that this has not been seen since I have now seen it in two cameras with two different lens. Way to test: set up distance focus indicator on screen. Focus 10 or 15 times on an object 15 feet away and see how it jumps around. Take pictures at extremes and you can see problems woth focus. Yes the green box beeped. Cannot trust camera.

    Reply
  3. DM

    Agree with the focus comments, it gives false positives from the focus beep and green confirm box, I’m really unimpressed with the focus on this camera, I bought it as a second (lighter) setup with four lenses (all on the list of usable with the xt5) to go with the gfx100s and I’m most likely going to send it back after 5 months of use in various scenarios travel etc, I’m just not trusting of the focus. Shame as for me it’s a great alternative to the bigger heavier gfx, but at the end of the day I’m getting a focus confirm from the camera while shooting and getting home and finding oof photos. It’s a know problem if you have a search online.

    Reply
  4. SA

    Good review, and I enjoy your site. Maybe I missed a correction, but you wrote “the lack of ability to quickly format the memory card”. But on my X-T5, I can press the delete button and the rear command dial together and up comes the option to format the memory cards.

    Reply
  5. Simon Cobb

    Excellent “real world” review, thank you. I’ve owned an X-T2 since it was released and have been on the fence about upgrading. This has helped convince me that now if the time. I particularly liked the shots of Lincoln Cathedral, the city of my birth, a long way from my current home of Christchurch, New Zealand.

    Reply
    1. thebumpercrew Post author

      Thanks, Simon. You are very much where I was, and I finally bit the bullet and upgraded. I read the other day that the price of it had dropped, so maybe now is a great time to upgrade!

      Reply

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