Fuji X-Pro2 Image Quality Comparison

Below are crops from our laboratory Still Life target comparing Fuji X-Pro2 image quality to its predecessor, the X-Pro1, as well as against several premium mirrorless models at similar or lower price points: the Olympus PEN-F, Panasonic GX8, Sony A6300 and Sony A7 II. The Sony A7 II is the only full-frame model in this comparison, but we decided to include it because it sells for about the same price as the X-Pro2.

NOTE: These images are from best quality JPEGs straight out of the camera, at default settings including noise reduction and using the camera's actual base ISO (not extended ISO settings). All cameras in this comparison were shot with our very sharp reference lenses. Clicking any crop will take you to a carrier page where you can click once again to access the full resolution image as delivered straight from the camera. For those interested in working with the RAW files involved, click these links to visit each camera's respective sample image thumbnail page: Fuji X-Pro2, Fuji X-Pro1, Olympus PEN-F, Panasonic GX8, Sony A6300, and Sony A7 II -- links to the RAW files appear beneath those for the JPEG images, wherever we have them. And remember, you can always go to our world-renowned Comparometer to compare the Fuji X-Pro2 to any camera we've ever tested!

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Fujifilm X-Pro1 at Base ISO

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 200
Fujifilm X-Pro1 at ISO 200

The 24-megapixel Fuji X-Pro2 clearly resolves more detail in most areas than the 16-megapixel X-Pro1, but its predecessor does better with the subtle detail in our tricky red-leaf fabric. (The X-Pro2 manages to resolve some of the fine thread pattern which the X-Pro1 doesn't, interfering with the leaf pattern as well as producing lower contrast.) Noise levels appear comparable here at base ISO, perhaps just slightly higher from the X-Pro2. Interestingly, colors are more pleasing from the X-Pro2, as the X-Pro1 exhibits slight shifts from orange to yellow and yellow to green. Default sharpening appears to be a little higher from the X-Pro2 as well.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Olympus PEN-F at Base ISO

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 200
Olympus PEN-F at ISO 200

Here we compare the Bayer-filtered Micro Four Thirds Olympus PEN-F to the X-Trans-filtered APS-C X-Pro2. You would think the 24-megapixel X-Pro2 would have a noticeable resolution advantage over the 20-megapixel PEN-F here, but both cameras have similar resolutions on the vertical axis (4,000 vs 3,888 pixels) which is how this scene is framed, so the resolution difference is very minor and mostly boils down to different demosaicing algorithms. Luminance noise appears higher from the Fuji, but chrominance noise is higher from the Olympus. The Olympus produces a crisper image with higher contrast, though default sharpening also appears higher. The X-Pro2 resolves more fine detail in our red-leaf swatch though contrast is lower, while the PEN-F renders it smoother but with less detail, however the Olympus does better with thread patterns in the pink fabric.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Panasonic GX8 at Base ISO

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 200
Panasonic GX8 at ISO 200

Here's another comparison to a 20-megapixel Micro Four Thirds camera, this time the GX8 from Panasonic. Again, we see very similar resolving power because of the different aspect ratios. The Fuji image is however brighter and more vibrant, with better overall color as well. It also shows lower noise, both luma and chroma, and the noise "grain" looks more natural and less rectilinear in nature. However, the monk's attire in the mosaic crop is devoid of the specks of color present as a result of the offset printing process which the Panasonic at least hints at. Apart from color, the Panasonic does better with our tricky red-leaf and pink fabrics.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Sony A6300 at Base ISO

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 100
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 200
Sony A6300 at ISO 100

Here we compare APS-C sensors of the same pixel count and aspect ratio, with the main difference being X-Trans vs Bayer filtering, and in-camera processing. The Sony produces a much crisper, sharper image yet its sharpening algorithm avoids the noticeable halos around high-contrast edges the Fuji produces. Contrast is also higher from the Sony, especially in the red-leaf swatch, however it does contain some moiré patterns while the Fuji image does not. Luma noise is a bit higher from the Fuji, but again, chroma noise is much lower. Color is more pleasing from the Fuji, with less orange to yellow and yellow to green shift, but the Sony preserves much more of the coloration caused by offset printing in the mosaic label.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Sony A7 II at Base ISO

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 100
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 200
Sony A7 II at ISO 100

Here we compare the 24-megapixel APS-C X-Pro2 to the 24-megapixel full-frame Sony A7 II. This isn't really a fair comparison, but the A7 II body is available for roughly the same price and Fuji has claimed their X-Trans APS-C sensors offer full-frame image quality. Results are similar to the A6300 comparison with the Sony producing a sharper, crisper image but with lower noise and noticeable moiré patterns in the red-leaf swatch. Again, the Sony reproduces some of the offset printing colors in the mosaic crop and resolves much more of the thread pattern in the pink fabric, but overall color is warmer and generally more pleasing from the Fuji.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Fujifilm X-Pro1 at ISO 1600

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 1600
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 1600
Fujifilm X-Pro1 at ISO 1600

The resolution advantage of the X-Pro2 is still evident in more areas while producing better color and similar noise levels, but the X-Pro1 continues to do a better job rendering our tricky red-leaf fabric.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Olympus PEN-F at ISO 1600

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 1600
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 1600
Olympus PEN-F at ISO 1600

The Fuji X-Pro2 starts to pull away from the Olympus PEN-F here at ISO 1600, with much lower chroma noise and fewer noise reduction artifacts. While contrast is and sharpness are a bit better from the Olympus, the PEN-F's default noise reduction starts to obliterate subtle detail in the mosaic crop and especially in the red-leaf fabric.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Panasonic GX8 at ISO 1600

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 1600
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 1600
Panasonic GX8 at ISO 1600

Luminance noise levels are a little higher from the X-Pro2 in flatter areas, but again, chrominance noise is noticeably lower, and the noise "grain" remains more natural-looking than the GX8's. The Panasonic manages to hold onto a bit more detail in some areas thanks to its area-specific noise reduction, though noise reduction artifacts are more evident, and it blurs away subtle detail in our red-leaf swatch. The Fuji continues to produce a brighter, more vibrant image with better color.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Sony A6300 at ISO 1600

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 1600
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 1600
Sony A6300 at ISO 1600

The Sony A6300 continues to produce a sharper, crisper, more contrasty image at ISO 1600. The offset printing coloration in the mosaic crop is no longer present in the A6300 image, suppressed by the Sony's noise reduction. The Sony appears to do better in the red-leaf swatch, however much of the detail is badly distorted and false. The A6300 definitely does better with detail in the pink fabric, however the X-Pro2 continues to deliver better overall color.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Sony A7 II at ISO 1600

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 1600
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 1600
Sony A7 II at ISO 1600

Unsurprisingly, the full-frame Sony A7 II out-performs the X-Pro2 here at ISO 1600, with a cleaner, punchier, more detailed image although as mentioned previously, moiré patterns and noise reduction interfere with subtle detail in the red-leaf swatch.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Fujifilm X-Pro1 at ISO 3200

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 3200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 3200
Fujifilm X-Pro1 at ISO 3200

Similar to the comparison of these two siblings at ISO 1600, the X-Pro2 still manages to resolve more high-contrast detail and renders more pleasing colors, but the X-Pro1 does noticeably better in our difficult red-leaf swatch, while producing slightly lower noise levels.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Olympus PEN-F at ISO 3200

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 3200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 3200
Olympus PEN-F at ISO 3200

The Fuji X-Pro2 is the overall winner here at ISO 3200, with better detail and fewer noise reduction artifacts than the Olympus PEN-F. Luminance noise from the X-Pro2 does appear a little higher, but chrominance noise is lower, and the Fuji hangs on to more fine detail in most areas.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Panasonic GX8 at ISO 3200

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 3200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 3200
Panasonic GX8 at ISO 3200

Again, the Fuji X-Pro2 comes out on top in this battle at ISO 3200. The Fuji's image is more detailed with brighter, more pleasing colors and fewer noise reduction artifacts.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Sony A6300 at ISO 3200

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 3200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 3200
Sony A6300 at ISO 3200

The Sony A6300 still produces a crisper, contrastier image with more punch here at ISO 3200, but you can see it's working hard to control noise, producing unwanted noise reduction artifacts in flatter areas and along high contrast edges. Again, the red-leaf pattern may look more detailed from the Sony, but much of that detail is false, and the Fuji still produces more pleasing colors.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs Sony A7 II at ISO 3200

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 3200
Fujifilm X-Pro2 at ISO 3200
Sony A7 II at ISO 3200

Like the A6300, the A7 II produces a sharper, more contrasty image than the X-Pro2 here at ISO 3200. Because noise levels are lower than the APS-C A6300, noise reduction artifacts aren't as bad, so the Sony comes out ahead here except in color, but the X-Pro2 does amazingly well for an APS-C sensor.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 vs. Fujifilm X-Pro1, Olympus PEN-F, Panasonic GX8, Sony A6300, Sony A7 II

100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro2 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Fujifilm X-Pro1 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Olympus PEN-F test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Panasonic GX8 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Sony A6300 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Sony A7 II test image taken at ISO 6400
Fujifilm
X-Pro2
ISO 200
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Fujifilm
X-Pro1
ISO 200
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Olympus
PEN-F
ISO 200
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Panasonic
GX8
ISO 200
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Sony
A6300
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Sony
A7 II
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Detail comparison. High-contrast detail is also important, pushing the camera in different ways, so we like to look at it, too. While contrast isn't as high as some, the X-Pro2 does well here against its Micro Four Thirds rivals, able to fully resolve the line pattern inside the lettering even at ISO 6400. That's something the lower-resolution X-Pro1 had difficulty with, especially as ISO climbed. The APS-C Sony A6300 produced higher contrast, but detail wasn't significantly better. The Sony A7 II is the overall winner here especially as sensitivity climbed, though that's not a surprise given its full-frame sensor.

 

Fuji X-Pro2 Print Quality Analysis

Excellent 30 x 40 inch prints at ISO 100 & 200; a good 13 x 19 inch print at ISO 3200; and a good 5 x 7 inch print at ISO 25,600.

Canon PRO-1000 Printer ImageISO 100/200 each produce excellent, very natural and vibrant prints at 30 x 40 inches and larger, as large as you can go before running out of available resolution.

ISO 400 delivers a very sharp and vibrant print at 24 x 36 inches, with no artifacts of any kind visible at this print size.

ISO 800 also delivers a nice print at 24 x 36 inches. There is now a mild trace of noise in the flatter areas of our test target, but otherwise color reproduction and fine detail are still splendid. This is one of the best ISO 800 prints we've yet seen from a camera with an APS-C sensor. For super-critical printing needs, a reduction in size to 20 x 30 inches clears up even mild traces of noise in these few areas.

ISO 1600 yields 20 x 30 inch prints that are quite impressive for this ISO setting, with pleasing colors and good clarity throughout the image. There is a sign of mild noise in the flatter areas of our test target, similar to the 24 x 36 at ISO 800, as well as a typical softening of contrast detail in our tricky red-leaf fabric swatch, but otherwise a very nice print for this ISO. (Once again, a reduction in size, this time to 16 x 20 inches, yields a very clean print for those ultra-critical applications.)

ISO 3200 produces a 16 x 20 inch print that, like the sizes recommended at ISO 800 and 1600, is quite a capable size for this sensitivity setting. Similar evidence of minor noise exists in the shadow areas behind the bottles in our Still Life test target, although there is now virtually no contrast detail remaining in our red-leaf swatch. This print therefore almost passes our official "good" rating, and is certainly fine for less critical applications, but for print quality purposes we'll call 13 x 19 inch prints "good" here.

ISO 6400 prints are good at 11 x 14 inches. There is a trace of mild noise in the flatter areas of our target and the customary loss of detail in our red-leaf fabric swatch, but otherwise a very nice print for this ISO and sensor size.

ISO 12,800 allows for a good print at 8 x 10 inches, a rare feat for an APS-C camera and one of the best prints we've seen at this ISO for this camera class. There is still good color reproduction and detail with only mild issues apparent from noise reduction artifacts; a solid print overall.

ISO 25,600 delivers an 8 x 10 that almost passes our good seal, and is fine for less critical applications, while the 5 x 7 inch print here very much passes our good grade.

ISO 51,200 prints are rather amazing in that the 5 x 7 almost passes our good seal. This is, once again, quite rare for an APS-C camera. The 4 x 6 is quite good, and very much warrants our good seal of approval.

Do you like being able to crank the gain up to ISO 12,800 without a harsh penalty in image quality? If so, the Fuji X-Pro2 can deliver, being capable of a solid 8 x 10 inch print at that lofty ISO. While it certainly can't match strides with most full-frame offerings, it equals or bests most other cameras we've tested in the APS-C world for impressive print quality, and that's quite a feat given the current competition. What's also significant is that the X-Pro2 can make usable prints at every available ISO, and this is something we see from a relatively small percentage of cameras, even in the enthusiast category.

About our print-quality testing: Our "Reference Printer"

Canon PRO-1000 Printer ImageTesting hundreds of digital cameras, we've found that you can only tell so much about a camera's image quality by viewing its images on-screen. Ultimately, there's no substitute for printing a lot of images and examining them closely. For this reason, we routinely print sample images from the cameras we test on our Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer, which we named our "Printer of the Year" in our 2015 COTY awards.

The Canon PRO-1000 has a lot of characteristics that make it a natural to use for our "reference printer." When it comes to judging how well a camera's photos print, resolution and precise rendering are paramount. The PRO-1000's more than 18,000 individual nozzles combine with an air feeding system that provides exceptional droplet-placement accuracy. Its 11-color LUCIA PRO ink system delivers a wide color gamut and dense blacks, giving us a true sense of the cameras' image quality. To best see fine details, we've always printed on glossy paper, so the PRO-1000's "Chroma Optimizer" overcoat that minimizes "bronzing" or gloss differential is important to us. (Prior to the PRO-1000, we've always used dye-based printers, in part to avoid the bronzing problems with pigment-based inks.) Finally, we just don't have time to deal with clogged inkjet heads, and the PRO-1000 does better in that respect than any printer we've ever used. If you don't run them every day or two, inkjet printers tend to clog. Canon's thermal-inkjet technology is inherently less clog-prone than other approaches, but the PRO-1000 takes this a step further, with sensors that monitor every inkjet nozzle. If one clogs, it will assign another to take over its duties. In exchange for a tiny amount of print speed, this lets you defer cleaning cycles, which translates into significant ink savings. In our normal workflow, we'll often crank out a hundred or more letter-size prints in a session, but then leave the printer to sit for anywhere from days to weeks before the next camera comes along. In over a year of use, we've never had to run a nozzle-cleaning cycle on our PRO-1000.

See our Canon PRO-1000 review for a full overview of the printer from the viewpoint of a fine-art photographer.

*Disclosure: Canon provided us with the PRO-1000 and a supply of ink to use in our testing, and we receive advertising consideration for including this mention when we talk about camera print quality. Our decision to use the PRO-1000 was driven by the printer itself, though, prior to any discussion with Canon on the topic. (We'd actually been using an old Pixma PRO 9500II dye-based printer for years previously, and paying for our own ink, until we decided that the PRO-1000 was the next-generation printer we'd been waiting for.)

 



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