About Thomas Fitzgerald

Thomas is a professional fine art photographer and writer specialising in photography related instructional books as well as travel writing and street photography. 

Fuji XE-1 vs Sony Nex7 - Can you tell the difference?

If you've been following what's going on in the digital camera world recently you can't have missed out on the buzz and hype surrounding Fuji's mirrorless cameras, and its X-Trans sensor technology. Fans and reviewers have raved about Fuji's imaging prowess and people are claiming that the x-trans is the best sensor out there and that Fuji's cameras are superior to even the venerable Canon 5d and D800. I've seen these claims time and time again. I was an early adopter of Fuji's X-Pro1 but sold it after a month because of the terribly slow firmware and the abysmal raw support. Since then Fuji have released both a new firmware upgrade for the X-Pro1, but Also, a smaller sibling, the XE-1. Also, Adobe have gone a good way to addressing concerns over the raw processing issues. So, last weekend, I made good on my promise to take another look at Fuji's X-Trans system if the issues ever got resolved, and as it was on special, I got myself a Fuji XE1. I'll have a report of my opinions on the camera in general in a little while once I've gotten a good bit of shooting time under my belt, but I wanted to do a little test to see how the claims hold up. So I took the same shot with both my new XE-1 and the widely regarded Fuji35mm lens, and my trusty Sony Nex-7 and much less expensive Sigma 30mm lens. Both are using default sharpening settings in Lightroom, and both have default settings. The Sony is a higher resolution, but these are 100% 1:1 views so that shouldn't be an issue. Also, the Fuji has no AA filter and is using a much more expensive and well regarded lens. As the Sony's lens is slightly wider, the field of view art 100% is essentially the same. Both were taken using aperture priority at f/4 the exposure as suggested by the camera, with no exposure compensation. Light is coming and going all day here so don't hold the exposure up as a comparison) Raw files haven't been touchd, just a straight conversion.

Considering these facts and that that the Fuji has the reputation for being superior, I'm genuinely curious to see if people can actually tell the difference. Below is a side by side comparison of both shots in Lightroom. Click through on the image or download the image to view it full size, and let me know in the comments which you think is which?

This isn't an attempt to do a scientific level comparison either, it's just a quick little experiment, so those who are getting hot under the collar because the testing methodology doesn't meet your requirements, calm down, ok, it's just a bit of fun. You know who you are! For everyone else, here's the image...

(Update, I re-took one of the images so it lined up better and re-posted the image)

XE1-V-SonyComparison2

 

 

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