Fuji firmware updates-- giving credit where credit is due?

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by Armanius, Nov 8, 2013.

  1. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Jack
    I was reading DPR's preview of the XE2, and the writer was lauding Fuji for vastly improving the AF performance of the XPro1 since its launch in early 2012. And how Fuji's support for its product builds customer confidence.

    I was chewing on those statements for a little bit. But I can't seem to bring myself to give so much credit and kudos to Fuji. I like a responsive company, but I would much rather Fuji spend more time on R&D and give me a great product on day 1. I understand that there are bugs that may go unnoticed, and those need to be addressed after launch. But issues such as poor AF performance and aperture blade chatter should be resolved before consumers get a hand on the product. At least in my opinion.

    When I got the XPro1 at launch, many people (including me) complained about the annoying aperture blade chatter. Some (including me again) also complained about the lackluster AF performance. I exchanged a few messages with Fuji "front men" such as the Fuji Guys, and was told that the chatter was not a big deal, and I should just learn to live with it. And that the AF performance was nowhere nearly as bad as people were portraying it to be (compared to the EP1/2, it wasn't). Weeks later, Fuji started trickling out various firmware updates addressing the chatter and then the poor AF performance.

    Did Fuji not do its homework during the testing period? Did Fuji really think those were non-issues? Did Fuji think that users wouldn't care about that? Was Fuji's expertise not up to resolving a simple chatter issue back in early 2012? Did Fuji not have the engineers and programmers that could produce a fast and reliable AF system back then?

    I am glad that Fuji has improved the X line since launch. And Fuji definitely deserves kudos when firmware updates give the user new features. But I'd rather have it right from the get go when it comes to performance issues, instead of getting firmware updates 1, 2, 3 or more months down the line. I gave up on the XPro1 about 3 weeks after getting it. I've been dabbling back into the ILC X-line up in the past month or so.

    Anyway, my point is that I am not too keen on patting Fuji on the back for addressing problems that should have been addressed prior to launch. I don't want to wait several months for the product to finally reach its full potential. Yeah, I know it's weird to hear such a statement from a gear head that is always an early adopter of products.

    I suppose if the world was perfect, Fuji would be like Oly or Pany at launch time. And then Oly and Pany would be like Fuji when it comes to providing new features to an old product, or responding to complaints (like banding when using the 20/1.7 on Oly cameras). And Leica's would be affordable. And all cameras would have a more sophisticated auto-ISO implementation. And everyone would get along. Etc, etc, etc … blah blah blah ...
     
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  2. serhan

    serhan SC All-Pro

    May 7, 2011
    NYC
    Yes... In a perfect world, we'll have a perfect camera. But we are not there yet:)

    Sony was very responsive on nex initially, then it died down and went to usual releasing multi versions of the same camera... I am still waiting for min shutter speed from Sony or at least the focal dist like m43. At least Sony has the auto iso w/ manual a/s option w/ FF cameras...
     
  3. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
    It seems to me that in this age of programmable electronics, initial QC is of less importance to manufacturers, knowing they can address select issues in firmware updates.
     
  4. retow

    retow SC All-Pro

    Jul 24, 2010
    Unfortunately, Fuji has not shown to be capable of releasing "ready for the market" camera bodies yet. X100, X10, X Pro-1, XE-1 were all released pre-maturely, with early adopters as beta testers. Most of the FW updates were to address bugs or serious shortcomings rather than to add additional features to an already well rounded product. Ricoh is the gold standard when it comes to FW updates adding new features to its cameras.
     
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  5. Boid

    Boid SC All-Pro

    Dec 15, 2011
    Bangalore, India
    Rajiv
    I'm afraid I'm going to have to disagree with you here Armanius. The norm among camera manufacturers seems to be more like Nikon's response to the D600 than Fuji's continued support for older cameras. Nikon steadfastly refused to acknowledge any problem with the shutter assembly and dust and oil issues on the D600's sensor. It's was shameful. And then they just slapped on a new shutter unit, changed the number on the body and launched the D610. Really shameful behavior from one of the world's leading camera manufacturers.

    Would I like Fuji cameras (or any camera I buy for that matter) work brilliantly right from the get go? Sure! Who wouldn't! But I sure won't blame a company who keeps trying to get it right, unlike big name manufacturers who just stick their head in the sand and abandon their defective cameras, leaving their customers feel cheated.

    As far as the latest X100 update is concerned, I certainly wasn't expecting any update from Fuji. And I was most pleasantly surprised when it came through. The X100 to me has always been a "proof of concept" product, and it has ushered in a new camera typology in the market. One that appealed to me on multiple levels. The new update has breathed fresh life into a camera that I already liked quite a lot. And I heartily commend Fuji on the same.
     
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  6. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Jack
    Speaking of aperture blade chatter, I just bought an used XE1 with 18-55 and a 35/1.4. With the 35/1.4, and all the latest firmware updates, the chatter still exists loud and clear!!

    For current XE1 + 35/1.4 owners, what happened to the fix??
     
  7. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Jack
    No blame there. But giving kudos seems over the top too. And yeah, Nikon sucks when it comes to doing anything after launch. A couple of firmware upgrades would have made the V1 an awesome camera.
     
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  8. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey SC Hall of Famer

    Jun 20, 2012
    Cambridge, MA
    Kyle
    I can't find a way to get worked up about it. I loved the X100 as-is when it came out (second firmware version, no sticky blades). The 2.0 release just made it even better.
     
  9. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    Well, Micro 4/3 lenses still chatter ocasionally on current Olympus cameras, most notably the PL25 in artificial light. However, you do get accurate exposure preview in live view.
     
  10. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Jack
    I had chatter on the EP3 + PL25. But none on the EM5 + PL25.

    And definite KUDOS to accurate exposure preview in live view. Something that Fuji and Panasonic having figured out.
     
  11. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    Artificial light was/is an issue, I find. The E-P5 still does it as well.

    I'm a little cutious as to why the XE-1 is messing around with the aperture blades if it doesn't provide 100% accurate exposure preview. Panasonic doesn't either but if there is a big shift in light it does one big adjustment to the aperture and that's it.
     
  12. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Jack
    Just to annoy me I suppose!! Fuji didn't like this thread ... and I received the camera a few hours after I finished the original post. Figures! But I really thought Fuji had fixed it. Maybe I got a bad lens and/or camera!