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The Best Fuji X-T4 Settings For High End Video Production

Below you’ll find the best Fuji X-T4 settings that I recommend for any high end video production. Use them when capturing maximum image quality is essential.

I’ve long been a fan of the Fuji X-T4 and have previously reviewed it here. I’m also currently shooting a feature film with the camera, so I’ve learned a ton about its strengths through real world use.

Under almost all conditions, the Fuji X-T4 can really thrive as a video camera. But to truly make the most of it, you want to make sure all of your settings are dialed in just right.

Let’s go through each major camera setting, and my recommended configuration. Keep in mind this post is focused on video only, and doesn’t cover any photography specific settings.

Fuji X-T4 Movie Mode

The Movie Mode menu on the X-T4 offers these formats:

  • Full HD 16:9 (1920 x 1080)
  • 2K / Full HD 17:19 (2048 x 1080)
  • 4K / Ultra HD 16:9 (3840 x 2160)
  • 4K / DCI 17:9 (4096 x 2160)

While I am a big believer that resolution alone does not equate to better images, with the X-T4 I still opt to shoot in the highest resolution: 4K / DCI 17:9 (4096 x 2160).

This is an obvious choice as it gives you the most amount of data to work with in post.

Rarely will I master a project in 17:9, as I almost always end up letterboxing my shots to some other aspect ratio in post. That said, 17:9 is still great for acquisition, as it gives me a bigger canvas to work with.

If you know for certain that you are mastering a project to 16:9, you might want to shoot in 4K / Ultra HD 16:9. It’s not quite as wide, but will save you an extra step in post by not having to re-frame in your timeline.

The HD/2K settings work well too if you are in a pinch and don’t have enough memory cards. But for a narrative or commercial production, definitely go with one of the 4K options.

Recommended setting: 4K / DCI 17:9 (4096 x 2160)

Bitrate

Within the Movie Mode menu, you also can specify which bitrate you want to use. Depending on your format, you will have these choices:

  • 50Mbps
  • 200Mbps
  • 400Mbps

The lowest bitrate setting (50Mbps) is not available in 4K and the highest bitrate (400Mbps) is not available in HD.

No matter what format you’re working with, use the highest quality setting. For 4K UHD / 4K DCI, that means 400Mbps.

Recommended setting: 400Mbps

Frame Rate

The Fuji X-T4 offers a variety of frame rate options depending on which resolution/compression settings you are using.

That said, the only two we need to focus on here are 24p and 23.98p. Like any other camera, if you want the most traditionally filmic look, it’s all about 24 frames per second.

On the X-T4, the 24p setting will record at exactly 24 frames per second, as if you were shooting film. This is a great function to have, but you may find 23.98p to be the better choice. Mainly because 23.98p is a far more commonly used frame rate in post-production pipelines.

To keep things streamlined and avoid any technical headaches down the line, I usually recommend just setting the camera to 23.98p for this reason. There’s also almost no visual difference from true 24p.

Recommended setting: 23.98p

File Format

You have three options for file format choice on the Fuji X-T4:

  • H.265 (HEVC) 4:2:0 10 bit internal / 4:2:2 10 bit external
  • H.264 (.MOV) 4:2:0 8 bit internal / 4:2:2 10 bit external
  • H.264 (.MP4) 4:2:0 8 bit internal / 4:2:2 10 bit external

If you are recording to an external device, you will of course benefit from the richer 4:2:2 / 10 bit colors, which you won’t get internally.

Most of the time I shoot with the X-T4 I don’t use an external recorder though, and am perfectly okay with the 4:2:0 colors. While 4:2:2 is nice to have, the difference really isn’t dramatic when compared to 4:2:0. And adding a larger recorder to my rig goes against my intent to keep things small.

In any case, H.265 (HEVC) is the way to go for internal recording.

The only real drawback with this codec is that is difficult to edit with natively. You almost always need to transcode it to ProRes (or similar) before editing. But the extra step in your workflow is well worth it. Capturing 10 bit color can make a world of difference – Especially when doing more complex color grades. And the only way to get it is with H.265.

Recommended setting: H.265 (HEVC)

Movie Compression

There are just two options for compression type in the Movie Compression menu. They are:

  • All-Intra
  • Long Gop

To over-simplify, All-Intra records every frame individually – just like if you were shooting on real film, or a high end cinema camera. Long Gop uses more processing to blend frames together. This can help keep your file sizes lower, but does impact the overall image quality.

For best results, All-Intra is the way to go.

Recommended setting: All-Intra

F-Log / HLG Recording

The F-Log / HLG recording menu allows you to choose which color space you want to record in. You can choose between:

  • F-Log
  • HLG
  • Film Simulation

F-Log and HLG serve a similar purpose. They flatten contrast and colors upon capture, so that you retain as much dynamic range and color information as possible. Then in post, you can use a color grading LUT to convert them into a more standard color space – for instance Rec 709.

Both F-Log and HLG are powerful tools, but I prefer to use F-Log to keep it simple in the edit. Most editing and color grading platforms can now automatically recognize F-Log and convert it to Rec 709. With HLG however, it typically requires some extra steps.

Separately, you have the option to record with a Film Simulation mode:

  • Provia
  • Velvia
  • Asia Soft
  • Classic Chrome
  • Pro Neg Hi
  • Pro Neg Std
  • Classic Neg
  • Eterna Cinema
  • Eterna Bleach Bpass
  • Acros
  • Monochrome
  • Sepia

These film simulations are really effective and fun to work with. You’ll lose some dynamic range by baking in the look, but that may be a worthwhile tradeoff for you. It all depends on how you plan to use the camera, and how much work you want to do in post.

For me, I will almost always shoot in F-Log. And I generally recommend that you do too.

That’s because I want as much control over the image in post as possible. And while I do love the look of the Fuji film simulations, I can easily replicate them on my own in DaVinci Resolve.

Recommended Setting: F-Log

Fuji X-T4 Film Simulation

We touched briefly on film simulation above, but I want to expand on it a little further here. If you do choose to “bake the look” into your raw footage with a film simulation, some will work better than others.

Much of this is subjective artistic preference. So I recommend trying all the settings and seeing what you like. But in general, my favorite for video are:

  • Provia
  • Astia Soft
  • Eterna Cinema

Of the three, my go-to is usually Provia. It’s the most middle of the road, but that’s why I like it. Not too stylized, but it still packs a punch with vivid colors and just the right amount of contrast.

Astia Soft is great for a more subtle, dreamy look. And Eterna Cinema for a de-saturated but natural film aesthetic. Many people are fans of Classic Chrome (which I like too), but it’s just a bit too stylized for my needs. I usually want to leave a little more room for post-processing with my shots.

Recommended Setting: Provia / Astia Soft / Eterna Cinema

Image Stabilization Mode (IS Mode)

The Fuji X-T4’s image stabilization is quite good, although not an industry leader. You will find better IS on a select few mirrorless cameras, but none are going to be perfect.

The Fuji X-T4 offers three different IS modes:

  • IBIS (5 axis in-camera stabilization)
  • OIS (optical lens stabilization)
  • DIS (digital stabilization)

You can use any of these modes, all three, or none. But of course to use OIS, you would also need to pair the camera with Fuji lens that has stabilization built in.

Despite the IS capabilities of the X-T4, I would only recommend using stabilization under very specific conditions. This applies to virtually all other cameras too, even those with better IS than the X-T4.

If you plan to do any sort of panning or tilting when shooting handheld, the IS will give itself away. It will work smoothly for a few seconds and then bump out of place. This is much less pronounced on wider lenses, but it’s still there.

The only time I recommend using IS is when shooting handheld with no movement at all. If you want your shot to look like it’s locked off on a tripod, that can work. In those cases, I’ve used IBIS only (no OIS or DIS), and have been happy with the results.

Recommended Setting: Off / IBIS-only for “locked off” shots

Zebra Setting

The Fuji X-T4 comes with a zebra function to help you with exposure. The Zebras can be on or off, and set anywhere from 50% – 100%.

Whether you use Zebras at all, and what percentage you set them to is entirely up to you. Some people like to expose for skintones, others for highlights. This distinction (among others) would change which zebra setting you decide to use.

For me, I actually don’t like using Zebras at all. The on board LCD screen and EVF are really accurate on the X-T4. I find Zebra stripes distracting to work with, and prefer to see a cleaner image with my eye. It’s not the technically correct way to do it, but I get good results qualitatively.

Recommended Setting: Variable based on preference

White Balance

Just a quick note on white balance.

The Fuji X-T4 lets you dial in white balance manually or automatically by using one of their white balance pre-sets. On most other cameras, I always use a manual setting. Pre-sets are often poorly calibrated, resulting an image that needs to be warmed up, cooled down, or skewed on the tint axis.

But the Fuji X-T4 is an exception. Perhaps it’s the legendary Fuji color science, but whatever the case – the white balance pre-sets on the camera work really well.

This is particularly true for daylight situations, and night interiors with tungsten lighting.

That said, there have been many instances where I preferred to use manual white balance settings on the X-T4. Especially when working with mixed color temperatures.

I recommend trying the pre-sets first if you are under good lighting conditions, and then relying on the manual controls under more difficult scenarios.

Recommended Setting: White balance pre-sets or manual settings

Fuji X-T4 Settings To Leave Off

There are four additional settings I recommend you leave turned off, or set to the factory default. They are:

  • Tone Curve
  • Sharpness
  • High ISO Noise Reduction
  • Dynamic Range

One way or another, each of these settings can degrade your image quality. I’ve never found there to be any benefit by using the tone curve or extended dynamic range settings. They could theoretically create unwanted digital artifacts, and I would much prefer to tweak those elements in post.

Same for the sharpness and noise reduction settings. I recommend adjust both parameters carefully and manually during the finishing process, not using in-camera tools.

Recommended Setting: Off / Factory

The Best Fuji X-T4 Camera Settings For Video

Hopefully this article has been helpful for those of you new to the X-T4. It’s an amazing camera, and I never once doubted using it, even on my latest feature film.

If there are any other settings you’d like me to cover, let me know. I can update this article as needed. Just leave a comment below!

You might also want to check out my color grading LUTs and film grain available here.

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About Author

Noam Kroll is an award-winning Los Angeles based filmmaker, and the founder of the boutique production house, Creative Rebellion. His work can be seen at international film festivals, on network television, and in various publications across the globe. Follow Noam on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for more content like this!

2 Comments

  • Vlad
    at

    Thank you for the awesome article, it made some settings clear to me.

    About the IBIS and how it can give itself away, as you shoot with manual lenses, what you can try is to set the lens focal length smaller than it actually is, this way the camera will think that the lens is wider and will do less assistance. At least that I’ve heard, and had no chance to test – hopefully soon will have one 🙂

    Reply
  • Martin Treacy
    at

    Really useful Noam, thanks for taking the trouble to share these! I’ve got an XT3, but I think virtually all of these recommendations would still apply (or the nearest equivalent would be obvious). Apart from the image stabilization of course which isn’t available on the XT3 – but as you generally recommend not using it, that’s not a problem! (When not having a gimbal handy or it making the camera too ‘visible’ in some settings, I have had quite useable results handheld just using the optical stabilization on the kit lens, the 18-55mm f2.8-4.0. It does require some sensitive and cautious hand movements, but it’s not bad at all. Not as good as a gimbal of course).

    Reply

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