I have always had a love/hate relationship with cycling photography. It is a unique and challenging genre that requires a combination of skills, including capturing movement, anticipating the right moment, and working in different lighting conditions.
I love that I get to capture great moments on my rides, slow down a bit, and add another layer to my day. But I struggled with the idea of having my camera on my back because sometimes all I want to do is ride my bike.
For the longest time, my iPhone 12 was more than enough to capture the epicness of some of the rides I’ve been on over the past few years. I mean, I started this very website using only my iPhone!
However, in hindsight, I always wished I had my camera with me. Sure, post-production can get in the way; sifting through, editing, and publishing the photos; but that’s part of the game.
My phone had been my go-to for a while until I started riding with my old Fujifilm XT-100. After a few rides with it on my back, I slowly started falling in love with photography all over again.
I was into photography for almost a decade before I stopped entirely due to burnout. But the Fuji had some magic to it, and it was getting to me for sure.
A few months in, I knew I had to carry my camera as much as possible. While documenting the cycling scene in Kuwait, I wanted to ensure I had the best-quality photographs to share with the world.
With my previous photography experience, I knew that the XT-100 would be limiting since it wasn’t for avid photographers but as an entry model. I needed some things from it that the XT-100 couldn’t perform. So I started to look for upgrades.
Thankfully, Fujifilm came in clutch and lent me the new XT5 + the 18-55 2.8F kit lens to play around with for a few weeks, a camera that promises to deliver on all fronts for photographers.
One of Fujifilm XT5's advantages, aside from its 40-MP sensor, is its compact and lightweight design. Weighing only 557g, it is easy to carry around on my rides, making it ideal for capturing shots on the go. In addition, the smaller size makes it less obstructive and less likely to interfere with my handling than a DSLR would. The camera's design also features a comfortable grip that ensures a secure hold, even when riding over rough terrain.
Cycling photography requires a camera that can keep up with the action, and the Fujifilm XT5 delivers on this front. Its advanced autofocus system lets the camera quickly lock onto moving subjects, making capturing sharp and detailed images easier. The camera also features a continuous shooting mode of up to 15fps, perfect for capturing stills in a fast-paced environment.
Although, I did find the AF system to miss a handful of times. Is it a user error? Or camera error? Or simply luck? I need more time to figure that out. But 8/10 photos were as sharp as a razor.
When I saw that the Fujifilm XT5 boasts a 40-megapixel sensor, I wasn’t too keen on that Big MP energy. But after a few weeks of continuous shooting, I was surprised by the high-quality images with rich colors and excellent detail. The sensor features a back-illuminated design, which helps to reduce noise and improve image quality, even in low-light conditions.
The Images I got with the XT5 were some of my favorites this year. The dynamic range baked into each photo, with the amazing details, really encouraged me to keep taking that camera with me on rides. As you can see in the images in this article, the results were stellar, and that's using the kit lens. It's all up from here with even better lenses, such as the iconic Fuji 35mm 1.4F.
It felt less like a chore and more like art.
What I hated about this experience was that I had to give the XT5 back to Fujifilm. I loved that camera, its aesthetics, performance, and magic that made me fall in love with photography all over again. The XT5 simply fits in my hand and just feels right. What I also loved about it were the external dials and buttons that just felt intuitive to use.
Is this an excellent camera for cycling photography? Definitely!
The XT5 is compact, lightweight, has fast autofocus, high-speed FPS, and excellent image quality. Whether you are a professional photographer or an enthusiastic amateur, the XT5 is an ideal choice for capturing stunning images. This camera is sure to impress even the most demanding photographers.