Expanded Exposure Bracketing with the Fujifilm X-T2

I had all but given up on using exposure bracketing on my Fujifilm cameras. I would shoot the standard three frames, regular exposure, +1 and -1 and then use Lightroom’s merge to HDR to build a “High Def” image. Problem was that I could get the same result just taking the normal exposure and by moving the highlight and shadow sliders along with moving the white an black point sliders and get a result that was very similar to the HDR output. The dynamic range of the X-Trans sensors is pretty wide in raw. So why bother?

With newly released version 2.0 of the X-T2 firmware, you can set the camera to take up to 9 exposures to really build a much more “dynamic” image.

Kings Cross Station

This is the final image I developed using the Fujifilm X-T2 and XF 16-55mm F/2.8 R LM WR while waiting to take the train from London to Hogsmead somewhere near Hogwarts School.

Here is how I had my camera set up to shoot the bracketed images.

On the Shooting menu, select drive settings.

Then select BKT Setting

Then BKT Select (Hard to see in my excellent screen captures…)

Once you select AE BKT you can go back one screen and set up the AE Bracket steps

Click on AE BKT

Then Frame/Step Settings. Note below you can set for continuous frames or 1 frame per click. You can also determine the order in which the exposures are made.  I have it set to O normal exposure then plus exposures then minus exposures.

You can then select the number of frames to shoot.

And finally the number of steps between exposure. Note on the graphic below that the middle step is not right on 0 as the camera also takes into account any EV adjustments you have made. In my case I have (and usually have) a 2/3 minus EV dialed in.

And here you have the resulting 5 exposures. I think we start to have some captures that we can work with for building interesting HDR images.

Images shot with Fujifilm X-T2 and XF 16-55mm F/2.8 R LM WR


Confidence

Photography, like most things in life is better when you are confident. I’ve processed several images lately that gave me confidence that I can create the image I see before I press the shutter button.  The confidence comes not only from the ability to get the composition correct in camera. It also comes from the camera being able to capture the detail I want. And to present the tonal range the I saw with my eyes.

Flimflam's Lanterns
Flimflam’s Lanterns

These images were taken at maybe 4:30 in the afternoon so the light was rather contrasty.  I apply the Provia/Standard camera profile to all my imported raw files and add a bit of sharpening as needed.  I bracketed the shots to plus 2 stops and minus 2 stops and processed them with Lightroom’s Photo Merge HDR. I also passed them through Photoshop where I applied some Nik Software By Google Color Effects 4 Tonal and Pro Contrast filters.

20161025-_dsf2016-hdr-2-edit
Gringot’s Dragon

The images were shot with the Fujifilm X-T2 and XF 16-55mm F2.8 R LM WR lens. I could only have one camera and lens this would be the  combination I would chose.   The images are only 1600 pixel jpegs but if you click on them you can see the texture in the wings and the texture of the window frames, it’s just spot on.

It is nice to know that you can put the camera to your eye and get the images you see. Gives you confidence.