The Ultimate Fujifilm X-H2 vs X-H2S Comparison Guide

The Ultimate Fujifilm X-H2 vs X-H2S Comparison Guide

For many Fujifilm enthusiasts and pros, it was a long time between drinks for the X-H1 and X-H2S. It seems Fujifilm have conjured its magic wand to summon the newest release in the lineup of flagship professional models with the impressive 40.2MP Fujifilm X-H2 beast faster than you can say 'Fuji'. 

The new X-H2 is the world's first camera to feature an advanced sensor with HDMI In ProResRAW, Raw Mode:7680 x 4320 12-Bit up to 29.97 fps and 8K recording. It also has features like a new 125 ISO rating (which means it can be set as low even when filming in total darkness) and 1/180000sec maximum electronic shutter speed, which means you can capture the fast action using high-speed sync. 

Some other notable differences between the X-H2 and X-H2S X Series cameras include:

  • 53% more pixels with a 26MP - APS-C Stacked BSI X-Trans Sensor vs 40MP - APS-C BSI-CMOS Sensor. 
  • An ISO range that extends from 160-12800 on the X-H2S and exceeds 125-12800 on the newer X-H2
  • The X-H2S beats the newer model in continuous shooting, capping at a maximum of 40 frames per second versus 20 frames per second.
  • Where the X-H2 stands out is in the video arena. Notably broadcast quality is achievable at 8K (7680 x 4320) video resolution vs 4K (DCI) - 4096 x 2160 video resolution.
  • Adding to the video suite of features, the X-H2S slows down footage at 240fps, whereas the X-H2 clocks off at 120fps.
  • On the X-H2, the electronic shutter can shoot at an impressive 1/180000 second, whereas the X-H2S features a maximum of 1/320000 second.

Image Quality

The X-H2S features a 26.1 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor and an upgraded image processing engine that delivers excellent image quality. The ISO range has been expanded to extend from ISO 100 - 51200 (ISO 100 is JPEG only), making it capable of capturing great images in low light situations.

Compare this to the latest release of the X-H2, and the former specs seem redundant. The new standard boasts a 40.2 megapixel APS-C sized BSI-CMOS sensor, making it capable of capturing extremely high-quality images with immense detail and extremely low noise levels. Within the camera, you'll find the trusty X-Processor 5 image processing engine, which is responsible for crunching the data, enabling the camera to produce amazingly detailed images with an incredibly wide dynamic range. 


The only common thing the Fujifilm X-H2 and X-H2S have when it comes to sensor design is that they both lack anti-alias filters. Removing the anti-alias filter increases the sharpness and level of detail while making moire a thing of the past, thanks to Fujifilm's revolutionary X-Trans CMOS sensor design.

Talking about sensor tech, it's definitely a standout mention that the X-H2 is the first X Series camera to feature Pixel Shift Multi-Shot technology. Using the in-body stabilisation system to shift the sensor by a half pixel between each frame, the X-H2 precisely makes 20 frames to ensure that every red, green, and blue pixel has the same information. The result is a single 160MP final image with almost no false colours visible. 


Video Quality 

If you have been shooting with the X-H2S already, then you'll be used to the 4K/30p video with 4:2:0 10 Bit internal recording or 4K/60p 4:2:2 10bit HDMI output. The X-H2 takes video seriously and provides true broadcast quality at a touch of a button. With this new camera, you can expect to record 8k/30p movies in 4:2:2 10-bit colour. This means instead of getting a bit depth of millions of colours, trillions of colours are now the new norm. 

The X-H2 is the best choice for external Raw recording as a cinematographer, videographer or filmmaker. Using a compatible external recorder from Atomos or Blackmagic, users can gain a 12-bit raw format in either ProRes RAW or Blackmagic RAW format, as well as work with F-Log or F-Log 2 profiles. External Raw Recording is possible in resolutions up to 8K, making this a welcome move for serious professionals who may have previously looked at the X-H2S. 



If high-end video isn't your thing, you can still use the X-H2S for F-Log gamma support and Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG) support for HDR playback on compatible TVs and monitors. This makes it a great choice for photographers who also want to dabble in videography. 

It's worth noting that Fujifilm has considered the working professional regarding video recording. The battery life (Fujifilm NP-W235) lasts approximately 160 minutes, making it perfect for long formal events such as weddings or parties. The X-H2 also supports oversampling up to Ultra HD resolution, so nothing will be left uncaptured, even if there's some roughness around the edges. 

Shooting Performance

When the Fujifilm X-H2S was announced, there was much fanfare about the ability to shoot up to 40 frames per second. This fast and responsive camera was all thanks to the new quad-core processor. It could fire off multiple frames per second with continuous autofocus tracking, making it ideal for action photography. With months passing, it seems Fujifilm didn't want to top the blazing fast speed of the X-H2S, as this would have upset the current market conditions. In saying that, below is the summary of the two models at their highest image output:

Continuous Frame Rates on the Fujifilm X-H2 vs Fujifilm X-H2S

Electronic Shutter

  • Gain up to 20 fps at 40.2 MP vs 40 fps at 26.1 MP when shooting in JPEG or RAW

Mechanical Shutter

  • Gain up to 15 fps at 40.2 MP vs 15 fps at 26.1 MP when shooting in JPEG or RAW

Like the X-H2S, the X-H2 offers a range of features to assist with your shooting, such as subject detection and tracking. The new functions include five-axis image stabilisation that can be applied at up to seven stops in the body for a smoother shooting experience. 

Shooting functions like subject-detection AF based on Deep Learning technology allow X-H2 users to automatically track and capture more types of subjects than ever before. With five-axis image stabilisation, photos will always be crisp, no matter where they're taken. The new features also include a one-stop compensation for low light shooting and the "Pixel Shift Multishot" function, combining 20 images into 1 single frame using dedicated software.


Size and Weight

When choosing the perfect camera for your needs, there are many factors to consider. One of these is size and weight - how big do I need my camera? What about if it's heavier than another type or smaller in measurements, width-wise, length, etc? Fortunately, Fujifilm has made the decision easy based on your shooting style. For instance, carrying around an extra 139g is doable if you want the best video features. At the same time, the X-H2S speaks more to sports and wildlife photographers at 579g or 660g with a battery and memory card.

Final Thoughts

When you put these cameras side by side, Fujifilm has made it easy to make a buying decision. You'll get all the norms like built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, dual SD card slots, USB Type-C 3.1 Gen 1 support, an external microphone jack, and a headphone jack, but what's different is the way photographers and cinematographers use the products. 

Either camera will produce exceptional results, so you won't have trouble selecting a standout model. Just ask yourself: Will you be using a mirrorless camera primarily for video or stills? If the latter is your answer, then X-H2S will be the best buy for you. Whereas if you want to extend your creativity into the motion picture format while capturing the highest possible still quality in an X-Series camera, then the newer X-H2 is what we would recommend.