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Friday, 25 September 2020


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Mike, I can't say that I've owned both, but I have the Sony and have three Fujis.
The Sony has wonderful image detail and sharpness but its Achilles heel is battery life - it is appalling. and the camera has been in a drawer for several years. Its small size is less appealing when a day's outing needs a pocket full of batteries.
It also taught me that I don't need all those pixels. The Fuji sensor provides more than ample quality.
OT: the original Canon 5d (FF, 13 mp)made some of my favorite pictures still on the wall

I'd rather have 24x36, and the larger focusing surface of the Sony is desirable, but...
The choice is easy...the Fuji. Why? No viewfinder on the Sony. Over 3000 dollars for a 'blind' camera that operates like Grandma's first digital from 2005 is, to me, a poor use of money.

I'm not sure the image quality comparison is really relevant. After all, these are, as you say, pocketable cmaeras with a fixed 35mm lens. So what's the most likely use case, and where does image quality come into the equation?

Killer factor for me is the slimline profile of the Fuji. I've had an x-100t for many years now and it really is pocketable, in many different sorts of pockets. Not sure that big clunk of a lens on the Sony really compares..

Honestly I can't tell until I pick one up and shoot for a while. Neither one has image stabilization, and I like this feature so much in my new XT-4 it might not matter which gift I pick, except for resale value. Being a Fuji shooter, I imagine I would like holding and using the Fuji more, but a small full frame has appeal. I kind of think the one you are missing here is the stabilized, very small Ricoh GR III. Of the three cameras, if someone gave me all three under condition that I not sell them, I might use that one the most.

They both seem fantastic, but that Sony might make all my close-focusing Rollei 35S dreams come true.

Hey, Mike, I did this comparison with the original Sony RX1 Mark 1 and the Fuji X100s. With very careful technique and careful post processing, the Sony won by a hair on image quality, but not enough to justify keeping it.

If I had to pick one to be given, it would be the X100v. I prefer the color out of the camera over the Sony, as well as the user interface. As I currently own a complete X system, a complete GFX system, and a Sony A9 and A7R3, I feel like I'm in a pretty good place to make that decision. :-)

I think I've become too darn old to want a small camera with no viewfinder built-in, so if you're going to gift me the Fujifilm, I'd graciously accept. Thank you very much.

Despite being "larger," the Fuji should actually be more portable because of Sony's lens protrusion.

I found an old review (https://petapixel.com/2016/03/11/review-sony-rx1r-ii-excellent-extravagant-overpriced/) of the RX1RII on Petapixel that compares it briefly to the (older, 16mpx) X100S.

It's a start.

I prefer professional formats over amateur :-), so Sony.

All things considered, bigger is better, plus you have more flexibility. Look at Hasselblad files, they completely blow away full frame.


:: raises hand ::

I have a Sony RX-1R, and the previous FujiFilm model, the X100F. I’ve shot about 100,000 frames with the Sony, and about 50,000 frames with the Fuji.

I shoot RAW, with the RAW converter being Apple’s built-in, as was used by e.g., Aperture. The Sony files, shaped by the truly excellent Zeiss lens, are simply terrific. For me they are every bit the equal of my Canon 5D files, and better than my Sony A9 files (no doubt in part because I’m using a zoom on the A9.) Truly impressive in low light / high ISO, too. The 42 megapixels allow for detailed files.

The Fuji, by contrast, is a 1/2 step down. Working with the RAW files is awkward; even though Capture One Pro (my current RAW converter) can render the files, jpeg previews that I need or presorting and geotagging are absent — either not there or my OS can’t see them — so RAWs need to be converted. I use Iridient’s converter which is “fine” but an extra step. I do prefer the smaller megapixel size of the Fuji files, though the conversion program I use means they blow up in size, ending up actually larger than the Sony files.

The Fuji images themselves are pretty good: in good light, not stopped down, the files are more than fine, but the Fuji lens struggles wide open. i don’t need tack sharp for nearly any of my images, which is good because it is not on offer wide open (I understand the 100V’s redesigned lens is better here.) The Sony, by contrast, is unusually sharp wide-open. You need to stop down only to control depth of field, rather than for sharpness. Similarly, Fuji’s low light / high ISO are acceptable, but color suffers much more, and at lower ISOs, than in comparison to Sony RAWs.

The Sony’s Zeiss lens’ barrel distortion is easier to work with than the Fuji’s.

In terms of ergonomics, however, the Sony is a little disadvantaged. The aperture on the lens barrel itself is good, and exposure comp is right where you need it, but the menus are a disaster and I needed to buy an aftermarket grip to hold the camera comfortably. That fabulous Zeiss lens is actually quite large, which means the Fuji by contrast is more “pocketable.” The Sony is also denser — like a brick — but a bit delicate in terms of doors, flaps and doo-hickeys. The Fuji is slimmer, lighter and tougher, and wins in terms of ergonomics by being able to select shutter speed via a visual dial (rather than the Sony look-in-viewfinder and rotate a rear dial). Aperture priority and Shutter priority are therefore simpler with the Fuji; Sony is fine but a bit fussier.

The Sony is button-encrusted; the Fuji a bit less overwhelming.

The Sony’s viewfinder is far left, but a very annoying and fussy pop-up — I usually end up not taking that extra step to raise it, so almost never use it. Also, one well-placed drop of the camera popped the pop-ups cover clean off. The Fuji’s far-left viewfinder is not a pop-up, and therefor more convenient and more durable. Both Sony displays are noticeably better than the Fujis — not surprising, given the price difference.

Battery life is a challenge for both, so I find myself turning off the camera between shots. The Fuji starts up much more quickly, but its on-off switch is already getting funky and sticking. The Sony is more durable with less effort to turn on and off.

Both autofocus well, but differently: in single shot, the Sony is significantly slower (the Zeiss is a big lens to move), but when it grabs focus, it’s right on. The Fuji by contrast will let you fire a few before it lands on focus, but even so is noticeably faster to ultimately acquire focus than the Sony. For continuous focus the Sony isn’t really usable while with the Fuji it’s fine. Both cameras have lovely leaf shutters, which allow for very quiet shutter releases.

Flash? At some point Sony got rid of their very fussy (but great for fill flash) pop-up flash, replacing the space with the aforementioned pop-up viewfinder. By contrast, the Fuji’s flash remains built in. However, the Fuji flash isn’t great at fill and is otherwise also limited in use, given its proximity to the lens and that toggling its Fuji’s flash mode is a menu-based nightmare, and the “Quick” menu button to do it gets pressed accidentally all the time by the palm of my hand (leading to white balance being often messed up; this problem has been fixed in the 100V.)

So which do I carry as a daily? For years, it was the Sony, with the better files and beautiful colors. But because the Fuji is more compact, faster to start up, faster to focus, has a flash, and is cheaper to lose, it has replaced the Sony in my daily bag. I wish Sony would update the RX line with tech from their other Alpha cameras, because the mating of the RX-1 with the built-in Zeiss lens is so terrific and not a combo I’ve seen elsewhere. But on the other hand, you can buy two Fujis for one RX-1R, and quick focus is often the most important thing for grab shots.

TL; DR: Sony for the files, Fuji for a less precious experience of getting an interesting shot.

I really like my Fujis, but that RX1R is mighty tempting. I read TOP nearly daily, I like it that much, but it sometimes costs me dearly :-)

I'd choose the Fuji, hands down.

This year I switched from Sony to Fuji. After five years with an A6000 first and then an A6500, there is a huge difference in ergonomics.

Current Fujifilm cameras feel like they are made by people who love photography. Sony cameras feel like they are made by people who hate photographers :)

Don't get me wrong, the Sonys produce excellent images, their AF is the best, etc etc. The tech it top notch.

But I pick up the A6500 and it doesn't make me want to go out and make photos. I pick up the X-E3 or X-T30 and I do. The way, say, an A6000 series camera with the Zeiss 24/1.8 feels on the hand doesn't compare to the X-E3 with the 23 Fujichron. Not even close. Factor in the Sony menues that are three years behind at least, the film simulations, the ease of use of the wifi, and I wonder why I ever used a Sony APS camera.

I would absolutely take the Sony, simply because the X100V is closer to something I could afford. I like the haptics of the x100 more, the viewfinder is always available and the Optical option is very nice. But I sold my x100s and having a full-frame 40+ mp camera with a good lens is compelling.

All that said, if you were to say either camera could be my ONLY camera, I'd pick the Fuji. I'd be happier using it.

Viewfinder vs. no viewfinder: easy choice of the X100V for me. Though, I'm quite biased since I had the original X100 and currently own the X100F.

Not to say that the Sony is bad, just that having an optical viewfinder offers a completely different shooting experience than framing using the back display, at least for street photography (IMO).

In this case, it would have to be the Fuji, because the RX1RII lacks a built-in flash, which significantly reduces its usefulness to me.

On the other hand, I have considerable experience working with their predcessors, because I own both an X100S and RX1.

And in that comparison, the RX1 wins hands down. Except when it comes to reliability, as I actually have three RX1s and while all of them work, to an extent, only one works the same as it did the day it left the factory.

Unfortunately, long-term reliability is not the RX1's best feature and Sony's authorized repair center ... well, let's just say they do Sony's reputation no favors.

The Sony does not have a viewfinder, so it can be smaller.
I would never buy a camera without a viewfinder so my vote is for the Fuji.

[The Sony does have a viewfinder. It pops up out of the top plate on the left hand side. Imaging-Resource said, "The pop-up viewfinder is bright, beautiful and deploys really easily." --Mike]

I would love to see the comparison as well. I don't own either but have owned an RX1 (1st generation) and had the opportunity to borrow an X100 of the same era and the RX1 was very clearly superior in image resolution and rendering. The X100V is a new animal with what I understand is a new lens and I would be very interested in a current comparison.

The Sony scores big in terms of megapixel count. There will be folks who need big files. Apart from that, I think the Fuji has a more camera-looking appearance with the viewfinder and the smaller matching sized lens. And oh yes, the chrome adds to a retro look.

"If you were offered one or the other as a gift (i.e., no cost to you, but can't resell it!), which would you choose?"

I have 4 Fujifilm cameras and opted for the X-E3 over the latest X100 variant (I have the first generation X100) because it is basically the same size and I get to use all of my lenses. Additionally, while it is a cool bragging feature, the novelty of the OVF/EVF hybrid finder is not important since I find the WYSIWYG function of the EVF so useful. I no longer have to bracket like I did with DSLRs and my thumb lives on the exposure compensation dial. I find the X-E3 in my hand more often than my X-pro2 or X-T2 just because of how petite it is.

So with that said, I'd opt for the Sony. I could enjoy a bit more selective focus potential with full frame f/2. I'd rather have a more moderate resolution, but it's free.

Easy! For me at least. The Sony. I own the RX1 and the images I get from this little camera are simply outstanding! Plus, I prefer Sony's color profiles over Fuji's. I sold my Fuji X-T1 for this very reason.

That’s easy. I would choose the Fuji. I don’t like ugly cameras.

Neither, I had the X100s and the occasional flare in the viewfinder was very annoying, but maybe they have improved that.

The Sony has a great lens, but Sony menus.

The flare would be less annoying than the menus, but neither give me confidence when at point of use.

Leica M-D, optical viewfinder and no menus... Nirvana.

I used an RX1 for quite a while, until I dropped and bashed it on a crowded bus in Dubrovnik. I got a very large percentage of technically good photos, and because I trusted it, a large percentage of enjoyable photos. The results from raw in Lightroom were amazing. I have to say it was my favorite camera ever.

If my hands weren't so shaky, I'd buy another. IBIS is a wonderful thing.

I have the original RX-1 and an X100T. Although the RX-1 isn't my most used camera, when I look though my Lightroom database, the RX-1 lens is by far my most used lens and by far my favorite lens. It's the only lens that isn't some special purpose lens that I can often pick out correctly in photos on the internet. The camera attached to the lens could be better and could really use IBIS. I don't think I would find the RX-1RII an improvement over the original (I have the external EVF and wouldn't own it if that wasn't available).

I've never bonded with the Fuji. The camera and lens are ok. I really like the idea of retro controls, but somehow the Fuji just doesn't feel right, not like a real old camera. I know lots of people seem to love Fuji colors, but my color vision problem, protanomaly, and the color shifts that Fuji does (must be adding red to other colors), makes most Fuji photos look muddy to me. I do a lot of landscapes and find the artifacts in green leaves to be a bit frustrating and sometimes visible as mush in 11x17 prints.

The Sony has always intrigued me, but I'd never consider it over the X100. I'm on my third X100 now (the original, the X100T and now the X100V) and it's primarily the optical viewfinder that keeps me using these cameras. In bright daylight, I can use the camera with sunglasses on and see a big, bright image. As the light fails, I switch to to the EVF and continue to see a big, bright image.
Anyway, I like fixed lens cameras - you don't need to decide which lenses to carry with you, or which lens to use. You've always got the "right" lens mounted.
Also, using the X100V's hinged LCD at waist level I can set the aspect ratio to square and pretend I'm using my (fixed lens) Rollei TLR!

I bought and RX 1R II. Returned it. The auto focus was terrible, the battery life was beyond terrible. The little pop up viewfinder was a just a huge hassle. The Fuji is a much better built camera. Plus it has an optical and an electronic viewfinder. My original X100 is 10 years old and still going strong. Based on what I experienced, I seriously doubt the Sony would last that long. I currently have the X100V, X Pro 3, and GFA 50R along with my original X100. The FF to ASPC stuff is really overrated. However there is a huge difference between the GFX sensor and a FF sensor. Not even close. FF and APSC are are much closer. That's nonsense about the Fuji lens not being sharp wide open. I have shot everything from Hasselblad to Leica to various digital cameras. The lens is excellent. I usually find people complain about that because they are trying to shoot what basically amounts to a macro shot at F2. Duh...........

I used to have both and sold both to get an Olympus Pen F. Same gestalt, but allows multiple lenses.

But of those two: Sony for the resolution, Fuji for the user experience.

I have a Sony RX-1r and Fuji x100f. Indeed, the Sony image files can be stunning with that Zeiss 35mm Sonnar lens! However, as has been mentioned the ergonomics are poor. And I can't believe how abysmal the battery life is.

By contrast, the Fuji x100f camera is a much nicer user experience all around. And I find the image quality very good making it an excellent walkabout camera. With the Fuji x100f I set the lcd to
display in monochrome while shooting Raw + Jpeg. This Raw file
will then show up in color in Photoshop. Composing in B/W gives
a better feel for the 'structure of light' in my view.

The X100V is a wonderful camera to use. I've found that when using a fixed lens camera I just adapt to the fixed focal length and don't miss switching lenses or zooming (I have Sony A7r's for that). It's something of a relief. And it hits the sweet spot by finally getting a new sharper lens. I've been tempted by the Rx1RII, but the price, and the pop up VF have kept me away. I have the smaller RX100III and while the pop up works, and is good to have, it's a compromise. I would take the X100V over the RX1RII.

UPDATE Monday morning: Wait…the Sony has a VF, and it pops up?! Nice, but I'm staying in camp Fuji with this one.

A Fuji X100F mated with the RX1RII to produce a child with a full-frame sensor and a 43mm f/2 lens.

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