FUJI: KEEPERS OF THE FLAME


For the past twenty or so years Fuji have made some unlikely cameras. The “Texas” Leica and the GX680 are  wonderful examples of a company going its own way but its two latest models really are improbable.

New film cameras is this digital age. What are they on?

The Fuji GF670/Bessa III folder is a gem. Light, compact and a big negative, and from the reports that I’ve read, equipped with a very good lens. Certainly the results posted online are very good.

It’s high on my wish list, although the price in Australia for the identical Voigtlander version  is on the high side at $2,895, while B&H in the United States lists the Fuji version at $1,664. Given that the AUD is at parity with the Greenback a difference of $1,231 seems just a trifle excessive. And people wonder why Australians are buying from overseas on line!

That’s an aside, for the real news is that the wide angle version will be released in March. Life the GF670 it will take 6 x 6 or 6 x7 frames on 120 or 200 film. It is fitted with a f4.5 55mm Fujinon lens and has rangefinder focusing, but the lens is fixed making the camera rather more bulky than the folder.

Price is still a moot price. A German web site has suggested that the Voigtlander version will be 2,000 Euros at launch. This is about $AUD2,700 suggesting an Australian launch price of around $3,500. Ouch. However, the local price for the X100 is $1299, about $100 more than the US price. So there may be some hope that the price will be in line with  those in the US and Europe.

The GF670W is a very good looking piece of kit but it is a pity that it is not a folder and therefore a compact, jacketable model.

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