The Fujifilm X-H1 undoubtedly captures great real time 4K video but how about slow motion footage? While the mirrorless camera unfortunately can’t shoot 60p or 50p in 4K it can record 120 frames per second and 100p in Full HD (1920×1080) which a lot of cameras can do these days. But how good is it? Yesterday I went out and captured some snowfall around Frankfurt’s Old Opera House.
To avoid a bitrate disaster which could easily be caused by the fine and detailed snow flakes I decided to use the rather good Samyang 85mm T/1.5 cine lens that has a fantastic focus ring as well as an unlocked aperture ring. I shot mostly at T/1.5 and T/2.8 to keep a shallow depth of field. I filmed with 120 fps at 24p using the Eterna Film Simulation picture profile but with sharpness, shadows, highlights and saturation turned down. I am pretty happy with the results especially after not being too impressed with the results when testing the slow motion mode for the first time. Why? There was simply too much moiré and aliasing when filming architecture which is clearly less of a problem when filming with a wider aperture like T/2 which I did for this snow video. The bitrate is around 40Mbps but according to Fuji it should be 200Mbps because that’s what it says on the specification page (there’s some confusion online about how high the bitrate is). Even though only having 40Mbps is not ideal I didn’t see much artifacts even though the snow flakes were very tiny in some shots but even with the YouTube compression it looks fine to me. Even when I recorded 120p in F-Log the other day and graded the footage I didn’t have any issues. The only downside is that in some of the shots the movement doesn’t look very natural and smooth. I especially made sure to keep the shutter at 1/240s instead of 1/250s or higher to avoid any stutter or jerky motion but it’s still visible in a few shots. But let’s not forget that this camera was just released and luckily Fuji takes their customers seriously and constantly updates the firmware to not only fix bugs but usually also to introduce new features. I am already excited to be filming some proper slomo shots this summer!
Purchase the Fujifilm X-H1 from B&H Photo
Written by filmmaker Moritz Janisch on March 23, 2018