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Fujifilm GFX 50S vs Pentax 645Z

The Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Pentax 645Z are two professional cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in September 2016 and April 2014. The GFX 50S is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, while the 645Z is a DSLR. Both cameras are equipped with a medium format sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 51.1 megapixels.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Fujifilm GFX 50S versus Pentax 645Z
Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
Mirrorless system camera Digital single lens reflex
Fujifilm G mount lenses Pentax 645 mount lenses
51.1 MP, Medium Format Sensor 51.1 MP, Medium Format Sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/60i Video
ISO 100-12,800 (50 - 102,400) ISO 100-204,800
Viewfinder optional Optical viewfinder
3.2 LCD, 2360k dots 3.2 LCD, 1037k dots
Fully flexible touchscreen Tilting screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 3 shutter flaps per second
Weathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
400 shots per battery charge650 shots per battery charge
148 x 94 x 91 mm, 740 g 156 x 117 x 123 mm, 1550 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Pentax 645Z? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

The physical size and weight of the Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Pentax 645Z are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Fujifilm GFX 50S vs Pentax 645Z
Compare GFX 50S versus 645Z top
Comparison GFX 50S or 645Z rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Pentax 645Z is notably larger (31 percent) than the Fujifilm GFX 50S. Moreover, the 645Z is substantially heavier (109 percent) than the GFX 50S. In this context, it is worth noting that both cameras are splash and dust-proof and can, hence, be used in inclement weather conditions or harsh environments.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. Hence, you might want to study and compare the specifications of available lenses in order to get the full picture of the size and weight of the two camera systems.

Concerning battery life, the GFX 50S gets 400 shots out of its NP-T125 battery, while the 645Z can take 650 images on a single charge of its D-LI90 power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life 1
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch 2
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Fujifilm GFX 50S 148 mm 94 mm 91 mm 740 g 400 Y Sep 2016 6,499 i
 
Pentax 645Z 156 mm 117 mm 123 mm 1550 g 650 Y Apr 2014 8,499 i
 
Canon 6D Mark II 144 mm 111 mm 75 mm 765 g 1200 Y Jun 2017 1,999 i
 
Canon 1D X Mark II 158 mm 168 mm 83 mm 1530 g 1210 Y Feb 2016 5,999i
 
Canon 5D Mark IV 151 mm 116 mm 76 mm 890 g 900 Y Aug 2016 3,499 i
 
Canon 80D 139 mm 105 mm 79 mm 730 g 960 Y Feb 2016 1,199i
 
Canon 5DS 152 mm 116 mm 76 mm 930 g 700 Y Feb 2015 3,699 i
 
Canon 5DS R 152 mm 116 mm 76 mm 930 g 700 Y Feb 2015 3,699 i
 
Fujifilm GFX 50R 161 mm 97 mm 66 mm 775 g 400 Y Sep 2018 4,499 i
 
Hasselblad X1D II 148 mm 97 mm 70 mm 766 g .. Y Jun 2019 5,750 i
 
Hasselblad X1D 150 mm 98 mm 71 mm 725 g .. Y Jun 2016 8,995i
 
Leica M10 139 mm 80 mm 39 mm 660 g 210 Y Jan 2017 6,595 i
 
Leica SL 147 mm 104 mm 39 mm 847 g 400 Y Oct 2015 7,450i
 
Nikon D7500 136 mm 104 mm 73 mm 720 g 950 Y Apr 2017 1,299 i
 
Pentax 645D 156 mm 117 mm 119 mm 1480 g 800 Y Mar 2010 9,995i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The GFX 50S was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 24 percent) than the 645Z, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.

Sensor comparison

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature a medium format sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the 645Z is 1 percent smaller. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 0.79. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.

Fujifilm GFX 50S and Pentax 645Z sensor measures

Even though the GFX 50S has a slightly larger sensor, both cameras offer the same resolution of 51.1 megapixels. This implies that the GFX 50S has a lower pixel density and larger individual pixels (with a pixel pitch of 5.33μm versus 5.30μm for the 645Z), which gives it a potential advantage in terms of light gathering capacity. In addition, the GFX 50S is much more recent (by 2 years and 5 months) than the 645Z, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.

The Fujifilm GFX 50S has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 50-102400. The corresponding ISO settings for the Pentax 645Z are ISO 100 to ISO 204800 (no boost).

GFX 50S versus 645Z MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

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Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
 
Fujifilm GFX 50S Medium Format 51.1 8256 61921080/30p........
 
Pentax 645Z Medium Format 51.1 8256 61921080/60i26.014.74505101
 
Canon 6D Mark II Full Frame 26.0 6240 41601080/60p24.411.9286285
 
Canon 1D X Mark II Full Frame 20.0 5472 36484K/60p24.113.5320788
 
Canon 5D Mark IV Full Frame 30.1 6720 44804K/30p24.813.6299591
 
Canon 80D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.2113579
 
Canon 5DS Full Frame 50.3 8688 57921080/30p24.712.4238187
 
Canon 5DS R Full Frame 50.3 8688 57921080/30p24.612.4230886
 
Fujifilm GFX 50R Medium Format 51.1 8256 61921080/30p........
 
Hasselblad X1D II Medium Format 51.3 8272 6200none........
 
Hasselblad X1D Medium Format 51.3 8272 62001080/25p26.214.84489102
 
Leica M10 Full Frame 23.8 5952 3992none24.413.2213386
 
Leica SL Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p25.013.4182188
 
Nikon D7500 APS-C 20.7 5568 37124K/30p24.314.0148386
 
Pentax 645D Medium Format 39.5 7264 5440none24.612.6126282

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the 645Z provides a faster frame rate than the GFX 50S. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60i, while the Fujifilm is limited to 1080/30p.

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the 645Z has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the GFX 50S relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. That said, the GFX 50S can be equipped with an optional viewfinder – the EVF-TL1. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Fujifilm GFX 50S and Pentax 645Z along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

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Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
(000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
 
Fujifilm GFX 50Soptional Y 3.2 2360 full-flex Y 1/4000s 3.0 n n
 
Pentax 645Zoptical Y 3.2 1037 tilting n 1/4000s 3.0 n n
 
Canon 6D Mark IIoptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.5 n n
 
Canon 1D X Mark IIoptical Y 3.2 1620 fixed Y 1/8000s 16.0 n n
 
Canon 5D Mark IVoptical Y 3.2 1620 fixed Y 1/8000s 7.0 n n
 
Canon 80Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/8000s 7.0 Y n
 
Canon 5DSoptical Y 3.2 1040 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n
 
Canon 5DS Roptical Y 3.2 1040 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n
 
Fujifilm GFX 50R3690 n 3.2 2360 tilting Y 1/4000s 3.0 n n
 
Hasselblad X1D II3690 n 3.6 2360 fixed Y 1/2000s 2.7 n n
 
Hasselblad X1D2360 n 3.0 920 fixed Y 1/2000s 2.3 n n
 
Leica M10optical n 3.0 1037 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 n n
 
Leica SL4400 Y 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/8000s 11.0 n n
 
Nikon D7500optical Y 3.2 922 tilting Y 1/8000s 8.0 Y n
 
Pentax 645Doptical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 1.1 n n

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The GFX 50S has a touchscreen, while the 645Z has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the GFX 50S is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).

The Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Pentax 645Z both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the GFX 50S and the 645Z write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras feature dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. The GFX 50S supports UHS-II cards (on both slots), while the 645Z can use UHS-I cards.

Connectivity comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Fujifilm GFX 50S and Pentax 645Z and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
 
Fujifilm GFX 50SYstereomonoYYmicro3.0Y--
 
Pentax 645ZYstereomonoY-mini3.0---
 
Canon 6D Mark IIYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon 1D X Mark IIYmonomonoYYmini3.0---
 
Canon 5D Mark IVYmonomonoYYmini3.0YY-
 
Canon 80DYstereomonoYYmini2.0YY-
 
Canon 5DSYmonomonoY-mini3.0---
 
Canon 5DS RYmonomonoY-mini3.0---
 
Fujifilm GFX 50RYstereomonoYYmicro3.0Y-Y
 
Hasselblad X1D IIYstereomonoYY-3.0Y--
 
Hasselblad X1DYstereomonoYYmini3.0Y--
 
Leica M10Y------Y--
 
Leica SLYstereomonoYYfull3.0Y--
 
Nikon D7500YstereomonoYYmini2.0Y-Y
 
Pentax 645DYstereo----2.0---

It is notable that the GFX 50S has a headphone jack, which is not present on the 645Z This port makes it possible to attach external headphones and monitor the quality of sound during the recording process.

Both cameras feature a PC Sync terminal to control professional strobe lights, which will be appreciated by studio photographers.

Both the GFX 50S and the 645Z are recent models that are part of the current product line-up. The 645Z replaced the earlier Pentax 645D, while the GFX 50S does not have a direct predecessor. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Fujifilm and Pentax websites.

Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Pentax 645Z? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Arguments in favor of the Fujifilm GFX 50S:

  • Better sound control: Has a headphone port that enables audio monitoring while recording.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (2360k vs 1037k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a full-flex screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
  • Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
  • More compact: Is smaller (148x94mm vs 156x117mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 810g or 52 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • More legacy lens friendly: Can take a broad range of non-native lenses via adapters.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Supports a more advanced SD data transfer standard (UHS-II vs UHS-I).
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced segment (24 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 2 years and 5 months of technical progress since the 645Z launch.

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Advantages of the Pentax 645Z:

  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60i versus 1080/30p).
  • Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (650 versus 400) out of a single battery charge.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in April 2014).

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the GFX 50S is the clear winner of the match-up (12 : 4 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

GFX 50S 12:04 645Z

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Fujifilm GFX 50S and the Pentax 645Z place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera and Best DSLR Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the GFX 50S or the 645Z perform in practice. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.

Expert reviews

This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

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Review Scores
  Camera
Model
camera
  labs  
dp
review  
ephoto
  zine  
imaging
resource
photography
  blog  
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Fujifilm GFX 50S..85/1005/55/54.5/5 Sep 2016 6,499 i
 
Pentax 645Z....4.5/55/55/5 Apr 2014 8,499 i
 
Canon 6D Mark II+80/1004.5/54/54/5 Jun 2017 1,999 i
 
Canon 1D X Mark II..89/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Feb 2016 5,999i
 
Canon 5D Mark IV+ +87/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Aug 2016 3,499 i
 
Canon 80D+ +84/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2016 1,199i
 
Canon 5DS+83/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Feb 2015 3,699 i
 
Canon 5DS R+83/1005/55/54.5/5 Feb 2015 3,699 i
 
Fujifilm GFX 50R..84/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2018 4,499 i
 
Hasselblad X1D II....4/5.... Jun 2019 5,750 i
 
Hasselblad X1Do81/100....4/5 Jun 2016 8,995i
 
Leica M10....4/5..4.5/5 Jan 2017 6,595 i
 
Leica SL..84/1004.5/54/54/5 Oct 2015 7,450i
 
Nikon D7500+ +86/1005/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2017 1,299 i
 
Pentax 645D......4.5/5.. Mar 2010 9,995i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Fujifilm GFX 50S:
Check Amazon price
Pentax 645Z:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just use the search menu below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications: Fujifilm GFX 50S vs Pentax 645Z

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
    Camera Type Mirrorless system camera Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Fujifilm G mount lenses Pentax 645 mount lenses
    Launch Date September 2016 April 2014
    Launch Price USD 6,499 USD 8,499
    Sensor Specs Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format Medium Format Sensor Medium Format Sensor
    Sensor Size 44.0 x 33.0 mm 43.8 x 32.8 mm
    Sensor Area 1452 mm2 1436.64 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 55 mm 54.7 mm
    Crop Factor 0.79x 0.79x
    Sensor Resolution 51.1 Megapixels 51.1 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 8256 x 6192 pixels 8256 x 6192 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 5.33 μm 5.30 μm
    Pixel Density 3.52 MP/cm2 3.56 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/60i Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 12,800 ISO 100 - 204,800 ISO
    ISO Boost 50 - 102,400 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor X Processor Pro PRIME III
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) .. 101
    DXO Color Depth (bits) .. 26.0
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) .. 14.7
    DXO Low Light (ISO) .. 4505
    Screen Specs Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
    Viewfinder Type Viewfinder optional Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 98%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.78x
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel Control Panel
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.2inch 3.2inch
    LCD Resolution 2360k dots 1037k dots
    LCD Attachment Fully flexible screen Tilting screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen no Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus PeakingFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/4000s 1/4000s
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 3 shutter flaps/s
    Electronic Shutterup to 1/16000sno E-Shutter
    Time-Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer built-inIntervalometer built-in
    Fill Flash no On-Board Flash no On-Board Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Dual card slots Dual card slots
    UHS card support Dual UHS-II UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash PC Sync socket PC Sync socket
    USB Connector USB 3.0 USB 3.0
    HDMI Port micro HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port External MIC port
    Headphone Socket Headphone port no Headphone port
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in no Wifi
    Body Specs Fujifilm GFX 50S Pentax 645Z
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodyWeathersealed body
    Battery Type NP-T125 D-LI90
    Battery Life (CIPA)400 shots per charge650 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 148 x 94 x 91 mm
    (5.8 x 3.7 x 3.6 in)
    156 x 117 x 123 mm
    (6.1 x 4.6 x 4.8 in)
    Camera Weight 740 g (26.1 oz) 1550 g (54.7 oz)

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