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Mark Llobrera

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Fujifilm Webcam X + X-T30

Fujifilm X-T30 on a mounting rod.
New webcam setup.

Last year Fujifilm released software that allowed people to use some of their cameras as webcams. My X-T30 was absent from that initial support, but this month Fuji added support via a firmware update.1 The Fujifilm Webcam X program acts as a bridge between your camera and videoconferencing apps on your computer.

The results2 have been pretty good—of course this is largely dependent on the camera/lens combo you’re using, but image on Zoom is noticeably clearer, and the ability to use wider apertures to blur out my background is appreciated, since my work desk is in a corner of my bedroom.

Decent window light plus a camera with a big sensor and fast glass goes a long way, although it does feel a little bit silly to use roughly $1K worth of camera equipment to chat with my teammates.

Here’s a shot from within Zoom. The image is a little soft, but that’s probably due to whatever video compression Zoom is applying.

A screenshot from within Zoom.
Zoom face.

Auto only #

It appears that Webcam X only supports my camera in auto mode—I can see the settings panel, but all the options are greyed out. Fujifilm’s support note says this:

In case your camera shows the following menu: “SET-UP” > “CONNECTION SETTNG” > “CONNECTION MODE”> “X Webcam”, the setting window of X Webcam on your computer cannot be used.

The settings for INSTANT AF, EXPOSURE COMPENSATION, FILM SIMULATION, and so on need to be set on the camera before connecting the USB cable.

Hopefully they’ll open up the settings with another update; it would be nice to tweak exposure compensation as light changes during the day. I’d also love to test which film simulation looks best for videoconferencing without having to turn the camera off, unplug it, tweak settings, and re-connect.

I experimented with both manual focus and continuous autofocus with face detection. The latter works fairly well as long as I have the camera positioned directly in front. There was a bit more focus breathing when positioning the camera from the side.

Mounting the camera #

As for positioning the camera, I purchased a plastic mount with a screw-mount ball head attachment. It’s a little bit fiddly if I ever want to get my camera off to go shoot with it, but that’s usually a weekend activity anyway.

Other cameras #

Most of the major camera companies have some sort of webcam support; worth checking if your model is supported:

  1. When Fuji was launching the X-series cameras they made a big deal about their firmware updates, which often brought big feature upgrades to existing cameras. In recent years they haven’t been as generous—I don’t think my X-T30 will receive the newer film simulations from the latest cameras, despite using the same sensor/processor—but webcam support is appreciated. ↩︎

  2. There have been a few jokes about me launching a keyboard ASMR YouTube channel. ↩︎