Using a Fuji X-series camera in a studio setting

Copyright 2016,

After almost ten years of using a Canon DSLR for studio portraits, I switched to the Fujifilm X-series for my professional work. Most aspects of studio sessions are the same (lighting, etc.), but there are a few camera settings that need to be in place when you’re working with studio lighting after you make the change. I provide them here to save other Fuji portrait photographers time after they make the switch.

  1. Be sure you’re not in silent mode! I like the silent option offered by Fuji’s cameras, and typically have that on. (I remembered one reason why when attending a wedding a few weeks ago where the photographer left on the focus beep throughout the entire ceremony.) Unfortunately, you can’t be in silent mode and have the hot shoe fire. So when you attach your trigger, be sure to visit the Set-Up menu and set “Sound & Flash Off” to OFF (yes, that’s an unfortunate double negative).
  2. The mechanical shutter must be selected. Again, if it’s not the hot shoe will not fire your trigger. Go to the Shooting menu and set the “Shutter Type” to MS (manual shutter).
  3. Don’t preview exposure in manual mode. While this is a nice feature when you’re not shooting in a studio setting (or with flash), you don’t want it on in a dark studio because it will result in your not being able to see anything through the electronic viewfinder. To turn this off, visit the Set-Up menu, select “Screen Set-Up”, and set “Preview Exp./WB in Manual Mode” to OFF.
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