The Fujifilm X-T5 is a mirrorless camera with a 40 Megapixel APSC sensor, 6.2k video, built-in stabilisation, tilting screen and the classic control dials many of you love from previous models; oh and it’s also available in silver or black. Announced in November 2022, it becomes the second camera in the series to use the X-Trans V HR sensor, which made its debut on the X-H2 a couple of months earlier. I’ve fully tested a final production model and in the following review will tell you everything you need to know! As always I’ll start with a video about the photographic capabilities, followed by the written highlights. I’ll add a review of the video capabilities soon!
Fujifilm’s strategy of gradually trickling-down its latest sensor across the range means we’ll almost certainly see the same X-Trans V HR in multiple bodies going forward, so in terms of pure photo quality they’ll all be essentially the same. Where they differ is in terms of body design, controls, ports, composition, accessories, and of course price. Some video features will also vary, but I’ll leave that to my other review.
Like most Fujifilm cameras, the X-T series was originally devised for photography first, a joint flagship alongside the X-Pro for those who preferred SLR styling over a rangefinder.
As Fujifilm’s technologies improved though, the X-T evolved to become more adept at fast action, sports and wildlife photography, as well as growing into a very capable tool for video, and in turn the body gradually beefed-up to better-handle bigger lenses while also acquiring a side-hinged screen.
The X-T4 became their most capable all-rounder to date, but by trying to be all things to all people, had arguably lost some of its original charm and appeal. When Fujifilm introduced the X-H1 as a new flagship, I was initially confused, but now with the X-H2 and X-T5, their strategy has become clear.
The X-H series has become the true flagship, debuting new technologies with the least restrictions and aimed at those who demand the fastest speed and greatest video capabilities.
The latest X-H2 and X-H2S have now taken the pressure from the X-T series to be all things to all people, and allowed the X-T5 to return to its roots as a photo-oriented camera.
Whenever new cameras are launched, it’s a great time to check for bargains on used or older models, not to mention seeing if you can sell one you don’t need anymore to offset the cost of an upgrade. Either way, I head to MPB to find out.
MPB is the World’s largest online platform for used photo and video gear, so if you have any kit you’re not using anymore, just head to their website for an instant quote.
For example at the time I made this video, MPB offered me £845 for an X-T4 in like-new condition. My quote was in pounds as I’m in the UK, but they’re also a global platform operating across Europe and the US.
MPB’s quote includes free doorstep pickup, and once they receive and confirm the condition of your gear, you can choose to accept the quote and receive the money in your account the next day. No post office, hidden fees or disgruntled buyers to deal with.
Or if a previous model is good enough for your needs, try searching MPB for a used model. I found plenty of X-T3s from £709.
I’ve been using MPB for several years and always had a positive experience. So when you have photo gear to buy, sell or trade, I’d recommend checking them out at mpb.com or using the links in the description. Right, back to the review!
At first glance the X-T5 body looks a lot like the X-T4, with an almost identical control layout from the front, top and rear, but place them side by side and you’ll notice the 5 is a little shorter and narrower, albeit still not quite as slim as the older X-T3.
Pick them up though and the 5 is impressively 50g lighter than the 4, weighing 557g including the same battery. That’s only 18g heavier than the 3 and a noticeable 103g lighter than the X-H2 while crucially sporting the same IBIS unit and battery; remember the 3 had no IBIS and a smaller battery.
As such you’re getting a compact but comfortable and well-built body with the same degree of weather-sealing as the 4, the same battery as the 4, and the same sensible control layout too that will appeal to fans of vintage cameras. This includes dedicated and lockable ISO and shutter dials on either side of the viewfinder head, with collar controls underneath to adjust the drive mode or switch between stills and movies respectively.
The exposure compensation dial remains unlockable and may accidentally turn when you’re pulling it from a tight bag, but I didn’t experience any issues this time.
Note both the ISO and EV dials have C positions which allow you to transfer control to the front finger dial. I also like the way Fujifilm cameras take you straight to the relevant customisation menu by simply pushing and holding the button in question. And speaking of which, I feel the finger and thumb dials have just the right pressure for their push-to-click which allows you to turn them vigorously without ever accidentally pressing to access their additional functions.
Oh and a quick nod to the rear dial which by default toggles between magnified and full views in playback with a push, while turning it adjusts the degree of magnification.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, one of my favourite aspects of the Fujifilm X system is the ability to keep dialing slower shutter speeds beyond the arbitrary 30 second limit of most rivals. Set the X-T5’s shutter dial to the T position and you can manually select 1, 2, 4, 8 or even 15 minutes without ever having to go near a Bulb mode or special menu.
As a long exposure photographer, I find this feature invaluable and better-implemented than any other system, and it gives me the excuse to try out the new sensor for this kind of work.
So here’s a shot I took with the X-T5 and XF 23mm f1.4 WR fitted with my Lee Seven5 filter system and a 10 stop ND. This is a two minute exposure at f4 and 125 ISO shortly after sunset with noise reduction disabled, which I’m pleased to say is virtually bereft of hot pixels. If you’d like to learn more about long exposure photography, check out my tutorial all about it.
The only control that doesn’t quite hit the mark for me personally is the joystick which still feels unnecessarily small and pointy compared to other brands. I feel it would benefit from something more substantial, but that’s just personal preference.
I should also mention I accidentally turned the drive collar a couple of times when adjusting the ISO dial, so maybe it could do with one of those push locks on the lever to prevent that; still, it’s always fun to capture some surprise HDR images.
Moving onto composition, Fujifilm has stuck with the same 3.69 million dot OLED viewfinder panel of the X-T4, albeit now with a slightly larger 0.8x magnification. That said, it’s hard not to look a little enviously at the slightly higher resolution 5.76 million dot panel on the X-H2 and S.
This is one of several differentiators between the T and H, and if you look closely you may notice it on the finest details when composing, plus higher resolution displays are always handy for confirming manual focus. That said, unless you have them side by side you probably won’t notice in general use, and on the upside at least it’s not the 2.36 million dot EVF of the Canon R7.
The screen represents a bigger difference between the X-T4 and X-H series, swapping their side-hinged articulation for something closer to the X-T3. As such it’ll angle vertically up by just over 90 degrees and down by around 45, while pushing a button on the outer side will unlock a sideways tilt of about 60 degrees, allowing comfortable low compositions in the portrait orientation. It won’t however flip out to face forward or back on itself for protection.
The screen articulation has always been a bone of contention for Fujifilm owners. Some prefer the speed and discretion of a simple vertical tilt, whether they’re shooting stills or filming video behind the camera, while the side angle option does at least allow more comfortable shooting at unusual angles in the portrait orientation.
It’s fair to say a lot of X-T owners felt almost betrayed when Fujifilm switched to a side-hinge on the X-T4 and they’ll be delighted by this return, but equally I’ve already heard from many 4 owners who’ll miss the side-hinge. Not necessarily for its ability to face-forward for those who present to camera, but the chance to flip it back on itself for protection.
It is literally impossible to please everyone, although Sony’s taking a shot with the A7R V which appears to offer the best of both approaches, albeit lacking the physical solidity of one approach or the other.
Even though I personally miss the ability to frame myself when filming, ruling out the X-T5 as an all-round solution for my work unless I’m using an external display, I think Fujifilm has made the right choice for this series.
Ultimately if you want a new Fujifilm body with a side-hinged screen, go for the X-H series, or perhaps a future X-S model. Sure it’s frustrating if you wanted the vintage controls too, but in terms of offering multiple body approaches I feel Fujifilm offers a lot more options than most.
Before moving onto the internal performance, a quick note on connectivity and accessories. The X-T5 shares the same ports and twin SD card slots as the 4, which means you’re still not getting a full-size HDMI port, a dedicated headphone jack or a faster CF Express slot to support deeper bursts and the highest bit-rate video.
Beyond the reduced burst size and slower flush time, most of these will only be issues for videographers and again resolved by the X-H2 and S. Even as a hybrid shooter though, I wouldn’t personally regard any of them as deal-breakers on the 5.
The battery’s the same NP-W235 intro’d on the X-T4 and also used on the latest X-H bodies, with Fujifilm claiming 740 frames in economy mode or around 90 minutes of video.
Perhaps a more contentious differentiator though is the lack of a battery grip for the X-T5. Lest we forget a battery grip accessory of varying capability has been available for the entire X-T series dating back to the original X-T1, with more recent versions accommodating two extra batteries, tripling the overall life.
They’re also useful when shooting with longer or heavier lenses, but now it’s no longer an option for the X-T5, and in the absence of the electrical contacts on the base of the camera, any third party solutions would need to employ a stalk and sacrifice the body’s own battery.
Like the flip-out screen, Fujifilm’s basically saying if you want these features with the latest sensor, you’ll need to spend more on the X-H series and forgo those vintage dials.
This will undoubtedly frustrate the venn diagram of X-T lovers who want both the grip and the retro aesthetic, although I’m told the takeup on that accessory wasn’t particularly large. I certainly understand Fujifilm wants to differentiate between the models and provide reasons to spend more on an X-H2, but I feel killing the grip accessory for the X-T5 is an unnecessary restriction.
Moving on, the X-T5 inherits the built-in stabilisation of the X-H2 and S, providing it with up to seven stops of compensation with any lens you attach. This is an improvement over the previous X-T4 and it’s great to have it in a lighter and slightly smaller body.
To show it in action, here’s two photos I took with the X-T5 fitted with the XF 35mm f2 lens, which doesn’t have any optical stabilisation of its own. Both shots were taken at ⅙ of a second. On the left is the version with the X-T5’s IBIS disabled and on the right is the version with IBIS enabled, and taking a closer look reveals how effective the stabilisation can be.
The old one-over-the-effective-focal-length rule to avoid camera shake has become less accurate as sensor resolutions have increased, and on the day I required a shutter speed of around 1/100 to completely avoid shake with this lens and IBIS disabled.
Once I’d enabled IBIS on the X-T5, I could enjoy the same result at ⅙, corresponding to four stops of compensation, although if I return to the stabilised image at ⅙ and swap it for a version taken one stop slower at 0.3 seconds, it still looks pretty good. So I’d say it gave me four to five stops in practice, at least with this lens.
IBIS is also invaluable when it comes to framing. Here’s the view with the XF 35 with IBIS disabled, before enabling it in the menu and returning to a much steadier view. This makes it much easier to achieve precise compositions, especially at longer focal lengths.
Since most of the lenses you’ll want to use with the X-T5 to maximise its resolution are unstabilised primes, IBIS is a very important feature.
Moving onto autofocus, the X-T5 unsurprisingly inherits the same system of the X-H2, and as far as I could tell, the same performance too. As such one of the highlights is subject detection for animals, birds and a variety of vehicles, although like the X-H models, this is separate to the existing human face and eye menu making it feel a little bolted-on. All subject types should really be on the same menu like other systems.
So here’s the single AF mode in practice using the most recent XF 23mm f1.4, wide-open at f1.4 of course, and a single AF area in the middle, where the camera quickly refocuses between the two bottles without fuss.
And next for the compact XF 35mm f2 set to f2 which may wobble a little as it settles on the more distant bottle, but the process is still quick and accurate. Certainly the X-T5’s autofocus didn’t let me down or get in the way during day to day use.
Single AF mode in the middle is easy though, so here’s another test with the XF 23mm f1.4 but now with the camera set to Continuous AF, using All for the full area, and with Face and Auto eye-detection enabled. You could see the system identify my eye with a white frame as soon as I entered the frame, after which keeping the shutter half-pressed turned it green to indicate tracking.
And to show it working on an older, more affordable lens, here it is again with the XF 35mm f2 where the Auto eye setting is doing a good job at focusing on the closest eye and again keeping me identified in pretty much full profile. Note how the system found another face in the background as I temporarily left the frame, proving someone’s carving skills were more human than others – not me I should add!
Since portraiture is an important subject for the X-T5, I also wanted to make one more test but this time indoors, so once again you’re looking at the XF 23mm f1.4 wide-open and the system finding and tracking me as I move around the frame easily.
While Fujifilm’s AF system can still occasionally find faces in compositions without any present, I feel the system works very well when there is a human in the frame, plus you can set one of the function buttons to quickly toggle it on and off if it gets confused.
If you’d like to see the AF system in action for bird or vehicle photography using longer lenses, check out my photo reviews of the X-H2 and X-H2S.
The drive options are also inherited from the X-H2, albeit on the X-T5 coupled with less buffer memory and the inability to use fast CF Express cards to clear it. As such the top speeds are the same but you’ll be taking fewer images in a burst.
In my tests I confirmed the X-T5’s top mechanical burst speed of 15fps, even with continuous autofocus, where I was able to capture 329 large fine JPEGs before the camera slowed. That’s over 20 seconds of action at the full resolution, so should be fine for most scenarios, plus the buffer emptied almost immediately when using a fast UHS II SD card.
But for RAW the X-T5 is much more limited than the X-H2. I managed to capture just 20 uncompressed RAW files before the camera slowed, which represents less than a second and a half of action, and once I stopped shooting, I was waiting about ten seconds for the buffer to clear.
And while slowing the mechanical burst to 10fps effectively gave me unlimited JPEG bursts, I could still only capture 20 uncompressed RAW files at this speed before the camera slowed. In contrast the X-H2 captured 136 uncompressed RAWs at 15 fps using a CF Express card or 68 with SD.
Switching to the electronic shutter allows you to shoot at up to 20fps, but with a 1.29x crop, resulting in smaller images. Once again I confirmed the actual speed in my own tests, managing to capture 603 JPEGs across 30 seconds or 22 uncompressed RAW files in 1.1 seconds. In both cases, the buffer took around ten seconds to fully write onto SD memory.
So while the burst speed on the X-T5 is the same as the X-H2, the actual burst depth becomes another differentiator. If you’re happy to shoot JPEG-only bursts, I don’t think you’ll find it an issue in practice, but RAW shooters will need to think about whether 20 frames at a time with pauses afterwards as they fully-flush will be sufficient.
Just before moving on, here’s a burst taken with the mechanical shutter on the X-T5 while I’m panning, showing how the buildings are upright as you’d expect.
Now for the same pan but using the electronic shutter at the full resolution, where the sensor readout speed has resulted in visible skewing on the tower and buildings.
Place them side by side and the difference is clear. Like most non-stacked sensors, the X-Trans V HR suffers from rolling shutter, so as always, use the electronic shutter with caution, ideally for subjects or compositions which aren’t moving quickly. If you want less rolling shutter from Fujifilm, you’ll need to pay more for the stacked sensor of the X-H2S.
Ok, now for actual photo quality, starting with the various menu options. Like the X-H2, the top resolution is 7728×5152 pixels, but two lower resolutions are also available, and each can be recorded in a choice of five aspect ratios including 16:9, 1:1, 4:3, 5:4 and the native 3:2.
RAW files are available in uncompressed, lossless compressed or lossy compressed formats, and you can also choose whether to record standard images in JPEG or HEIF formats.
As you’d expect there’s the full selection of 13 Film Simulations to choose from, one of the delights of the Fujifilm system, and if you go for one of the monochrome simulations, you can also apply a colour tint effect if desired.
It’s all standard stuff for Fujifilm, and since the actual photo quality itself was identical to the X-H2 in my tests in terms of resolution, noise and dynamic range, I thought I’d present some new results and real-life comparisons for you with various lenses. If you’re interested in my charts and other technical tests, check out my X-H2 photo review as everything I say about the photo quality there equally applies here.
So here’s Brighton Pier photographed with the X-T5 fitted with one of the sharpest lenses in the system, the XF 23mm f1.4 LM WR. As I zoom-in for a closer look, it’s important to mention that while you can mount any lens on the X-T5 and enjoy more than 26 Megapixel’s worth of detail from them, you will want one of the better models to make the most of the full 40 Megapixel resolution.
To illustrate this, I’ve put the XF 23 1.4 on the left with the original XF 10-24 on the right, adjusted to deliver the same field of view and both set to f4 where they delivered their crispest results for this subject. As you can see the zoom on the right is visibly softer and resolving less detail. Again this difference would also be noticeable on the lower resolution models, but I wanted to show it here too.
If you want more potential detail, the X-T5 inherits the Pixel Shift mode of the X-H2, which uses the electronic shutter to capture a quick burst of 20 frames while subtly adjusting the sensor inbetween. These are then combined in free software afterwards on your PC or Mac into a file that theoretically boosts the resolution while also reducing colour moire artefacts.
So here’s a single 40 Megapixel frame on the left and the Pixel Shift version on the right, both taken moments apart using the same XF 23 1.4 lens. As seen on the X-H2 before it, Pixel Shift certainly has the potential to capture and reveal even finer details on some subjects, but equally suffers when anything on the frame is in motion, such as people walking on the pier and the waves on the sea.
To be fair, most pixel shift modes face the same problems, so they remain best-suited to completely static compositions under controlled conditions, such as studio-based product or archive photography.
Just before wrapping-up, I wanted to mention some of the other photography features that are often overlooked.
Let’s start with the interval timer, which automatically captures one to 999 or indeed infinite images until you stop it, at intervals of one second to 24 hours.
Next are multiple exposures which allow you to take up to nine consecutive images and combine them using Additive, Average, Light or Dark rules. The X-T5 shows you the composite so far, making framing easier, and lets you retake the previous shot if it didn’t work, but you can’t load a previous image from the card and you also lose the composite so far if you turn the camera off.
Next up bracketing, found in the Drive menu where you can select between exposure, ISO, Film Simulation, White Balance, Dynamic Range and Focus. For AE bracketing you can have two, three, five, seven or nine frames, from one third to three stops apart, and you can set the camera to take them separately or in a burst.
In Focus Bracketing you can choose one to 999 frames with a choice of ten step sizes and an interval of zero to ten seconds between each frame, but you’ll still be compositing them yourself later.
There’s also the full selection of Advanced filter effects and the Panorama mode which stitches together images in-camera to deliver a particularly wide or tall image, albeit not with the same resolution as manually stitching photos yourself.
In my tests I occasionally found banding on some panoramas with constant flat colours like a clear blue sky, but this can sometimes be alleviated by manually fixing the aperture, shutter and ISO values,
And finally there is of course built-in wifi and Bluetooth which works well with the current app for embedding location details from your phone, although I still have variable success when it comes to wirelessly copying images onto my phone. Sometimes it works perfectly, but at others it can take ages to carry out if at all.
There’s also wireless printing direct to compatible INSTAX printers available, but like most Fujifilm cameras, this is limited to the older Wifi-based models rather than the newer ones with Bluetooth. It seems bizarre to me the only X-series camera to support direct Bluetooth printing to INSTAX printers is the X-S10, and even that won’t talk to the latest Square Link model. Don’t they want to sell more of these things?Check prices on the Fujifilm X-T5 at B&H, Adorama, WEX UK or Calumet.de. Alternatively get yourself a copy of my In Camera book, an official Cameralabs T-shirt or mug, or treat me to a coffee! Thanks!