Still a Great Option for Many: Fujifilm X-T4 Re-Review

Still a Great Option for Many: Fujifilm X-T4 Re-Review

Yet another re-review of a discontinued but still very valid camera. The Fujifilm X-T4 slightly moved away from what made Fujifilm unique, but not in a bad way. It pushed the series into new areas and appealed to the dual creator quite confidently. Is it still worth getting today?

The Big Boy

Fujifilm has had this trend of slightly increasing the size of each of its X-Tx cameras with each new generation. That was later broken with the introduction of the smaller X-T5, but the X-T4 was indeed the largest of the lineup. When placed next to each other, the difference is barely noticeable, but the feel in hand is clear. Thicker, taller, wider, simply chunkier. Fujifilm has claimed the reason is the larger battery and the new IBIS mechanism. The NP-W235 battery is nearly twice the capacity compared to the NP-W126S used in the preceding X-T3. This improves battery life considerably.

Not small, not huge either, though. It feels good in the hand.

The second reason for the size jump was the IBIS. Compared to the spring-operated one in the older X-H1, this one consists of a magnetically held sensor which allows for up to 6.5 stops of stabilization. Eventually, Fujifilm was able to fit all of these new features into a noticeably smaller body with the X-T5, but at the time of the X-T4’s release, it was quite impressive.

The last, but definitely most talked about, new feature of the X-T4 was the fully articulating rear LCD screen. It offered nearly double the resolution of the X-T3 and allowed for vlogging, selfies, and being closed inwards for protection. Many welcomed this feature enthusiastically. However, many were also not so happy about it. I understand - it opened up possibilities, especially for filmmakers. But compared to the three-way tilt of the predecessor, it made shooting from the hip less comfortable. Not to mention the tiny hinge was much less durable than the more solid one on other X-Tx cameras. I even managed to snap mine by accident once. Still, it is nice to have options. If you want the traditional tilt, go for the X-T3. If you want a swivel, go for the X-T4. Internally, they are very similar apart from a few differences.

Fully articulating screen. Loathed by many, welcomed by others. 

What Stayed the Same? What Didn’t? 

The sensor as well as the processor are identical to the X-T3. This means we get the same low-light performance and color workflow when it comes to ISO. The base ISO range is still 160-12800 due to the same X-Trans4 sensor. The X-T4 has brought a new AF algorithm with improved subject tracking and face recognition. Luckily, this is Fujifilm we’re talking about, so naturally the X-T3 has received a firmware update bringing its capabilities up to speed, quite literally. The video capabilities are similar. Both offer internal 10-bit 4:2:0 at 4K30p or 4K60p with a slight crop, 1080p up to 240p, and dedicated stills and video modes with individual settings that do not overlap. If you wanted 10-bit 4:2:2, it was available externally via the tiny Micro HDMI. Most of the modes were available with F-Log or many of the included film simulations.

One difference between the two is the Classic Negative film simulation, made to emulate Fujifilm’s Superia negative stock. It has never made its way to the older X-T3 model, so if you want this greenish look, you need the X-T4.

Both still have a dual UHS-II SDXC card slot for raw+JPEG or backup options. The viewfinder specs are identical too, with 3.69 million pixel resolution capable of fast frame rates for a smooth, crisp image that's easy on the eyes. Even the control scheme is nearly the same. We still get the classic analog dials for exposure compensation, shutter speed, and ISO. Drive modes are still quickly reachable underneath the ISO dial, along with the AF-S/AF-C/MF switch on the body's front. One slight change was the repurposing of the photometry dial underneath the shutter speed wheel—the X-T4 uses it to quickly swap between still and video modes.

Traditional Fujifilm dials are present as expected. A threaded shutter button allowed for a small red button to be installed.

Of course, the body is weather-sealed. So, if paired with an appropriate WR-labeled lens, you do not have to worry about rain or dust. The mechanical shutter is capable of speeds up to 1/8000 s at 15 fps, and when you switch to an electronic one, your fps jumps up to 20. If you’re okay with a smaller 1.25x crop, you can shoot 30 fps stills. The electronic shutter can also go up to 1/32,000 s. Bear in mind that this is not a stacked sensor, so the electronic shutter may cause some rolling shutter, banding, or uneven exposure under artificial light.

The Image Quality

The X-T4 is quintessentially Fujifilm. Many cannot stand how it renders images; many adore it. In my opinion, shared by many photographers, Fujifilm still reigns supreme for JPEGs. I still prefer shooting raw, though, so it’s nice that all the available film simulations are available to use in post with Capture One, Lightroom, Lightroom Classic, or Fujifilm’s own X Raw Studio. My cameras are permanently set to Acros+R to fully concentrate on light and composition without color distraction, but the raw files naturally retain all color data within them.

As mentioned above, the base ISO is 160, which gives us decent dynamic range, plenty of detail, and clean output. The highest native ISO value is 12,800, which I use often. Yes, it is clearly grainy. Definitely more than, let’s say, a Sony A7 III. But it's a rather pleasing luminance noise rather than a color-based one. And if you shoot monochromatic, it resembles film grain if anything. I feel like I’m repeating myself as I’ve been saying this with every Fujifilm camera I’ve reviewed, but it’s true with all of them.

The largest of the X-T lineup. Barely noticeable when looked at but apparent when used.

What I Liked

Well, you already know I love Fujifilm’s analog dials and customizable buttons. Once I set up the camera for my use, I rarely need to dig into menus. Everything is within reach, even with my eye to the viewfinder. IBIS is definitely nice to have, though not something I personally need since my shutter speeds rarely drop below 1/200 s when shooting people. But I can see the benefits for filmmakers, landscape/architecture photographers.

Weather sealing, dual card slots, a great viewfinder, and long battery life should probably go without saying as massive benefits. But if you’re upgrading from an X-T30 or cheaper Fujifilm body, you’ll quickly get hooked once you experience these game-changing features.

What I Disliked

I have two issues with the X-T4. First, the size. It’s not a small camera—it may not look that way next to the X-T3 or X-T5, but trust me, it's noticeable in-hand and in-bag. But if that’s the cost of a larger battery and IBIS without buying a new, more expensive X-T5, it makes sense.

My second gripe is the fully articulating screen. Many would consider it a benefit; for me, it's a drawback. My preference is clear on this, but yours may differ.

The middle child. Does not quite fit but is still great nontheless. 

Well-Rounded Stills/Video Machine

This is my sixth re-review of a camera no longer in production or released long ago in tech terms. But not everyone wants to or can afford to buy brand new. And thanks to the X-T5 being out for a full year now, the secondhand market for the X-T4 keeps the price manageably low, especially if you take the capabilities into account. The Fujifilm X-T4 is still a very usable camera worthy of professional use in rough conditions, at weddings, in the studio, out in the streets, or as a documentary shooter. Its image quality is good enough for most uses, its speed is more than decent, and the build combined with the control scheme makes it a joy to use. In the end, that is all that matters. Having a camera that you enjoy using is far more important than having technically a perfect one that just gathers dust on your shelf at home. 


Ondřej Vachek's picture

Ondřej Vachek is a Prague based independent documentary photographer and photojournalist with multiple journeys to war-torn Ukraine where he covered everything from the frontline in the Donbass to the civilian life adapting to the new normal. Avid street photographer with love for writing and storytelling.

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The X-T4 didn't know what it wanted to be. Was it a vlogging-selfie-video-cam? Was it retro-hipster-neck-candy? I never liked the non-ergonomic blockiness of the X-T* series cameras. It was tolerable with the smaller and lighter X-T2. But the X-T4 was too fat to hold comfortably without a proper grip. Classic Fujifilm, throw a bunch of crap at the wall and see what sticks.

i love the X-T4. the ibis is a game changer. i came from Full-Frame and the X-Pro 2 which i still love but sold off

I’m primarily a stills shooter, but I still love my X-T4. At first I didn’t like the chunkiness, so I added a deeper grip that makes it very comfortable even in my slightly arthritic hands. That made a huge difference, especially with large lenses. I’m neutral about the flippy screen. Both types have their strengths and weaknesses.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this camera...except a few very basic things make me look at other cameras: focus accuracy and raw image quality (vs the great Jpeg output).

Focus: Shoot multiple frames per second and some of those will be exactly in focus.
Image: Edit the raw file in Fujifilm X Raw Studio and generate a TIFF file and then export that to Topaz Photo AI, double its size and THEN edit that in Photoshop... much better. (If only I was a straight to JPeg shooter!)

I've have every X-T ranging from the X-T1 thru the current X-T5. The X-T4 was my least favorite followed by the X-T1. The form factor with that ridiculous screen, larger size and extra weight really killed the shooting experience. Other than that, the IBIS was super underwhelming and inconsistent. My success hit rate was far higher using the X-T3. And it doesn't even have stabilization. Luckily Fujifilm rectified everything wrong with the X-T4 in releasing the X-T5. Which is an evolution of the beloved X-T3, with even better features.

i had an X-Pro 2 which i loved but decided i needed a newer camera. as i do video i am accustomed to flip out screens though i do understand the benefit of flip up screens for photography. my X-Pro 2 screen was fixed. the X-T4 also has a larger battery though i have never run out of juice except with my GFX 50R which i resold and later regretted