choosing between X-T1 and Sony A7

Started Feb 1, 2014 | Discussions thread
Astrophotographer 10 Forum Pro • Posts: 10,250
Re: No good choice

I have XE1 and several lenses. I had X100s. I had D800e and sold it anf got Sony A7r.

Once I got the XE1 I stopped using the Nikond D800e except for particular photos I wanted to take.

Once I got the A7r I stopped using the XE1.

I know you mentioned specifically A7.

I also intend getting the XT1! It is quite a hard choice and most of the replies and what you said are close to the truth.

A7r pluses:

1. 36mp full frame sensor - the highest rated senor from the D800e just got better as it genuinely has no AA filter rather than the self cancelling D800e. IQ with the Nikon is similar.

2. Skin tone and colour are superb (the poster who said Fuji colour and skin tones is better than Sony is incorrect. I expected that and was pleasantly surprised to find I consistently got a more pleasing shot with the A7r).

3. Sharp and detailed images - more so than even X Trans which are very very good.

4. Better at foliage type scenes. XTrans is much better at this but still a weak area of images.

5. Smaller, light but feels more solid. Styling is personal and Fuji does a great job. XT1 looks superb. I like my XE1 as well.

6. Yes not many lenses so far but the ones that are out - ooh la la! They are suddenly the best in their category. Did you know the FE55 1.8 is now the 2nd highest rated lens on DXO Mark and equals the sharpest lens DXO Mark has ever tested - the $4000 Zeiss Otus

The Zeiss FE35 F2.8 is better than the Fuji 35 F1.4. It should be it costs 80% more.

Its also smaller and lighter than the Fuji. It AFs faster as well.

The key lenses for me are nearly out - the Zeiss 24-70 which is already getting good reviews, the Sony 70-200 F4, the 35 2.8 an 55 1.8. But yes its like Fuji a year ago with only a few lenses but each is high quality.

7. You can download apps - kind of handy. They have a lens compensation app which is quite good, a time lapse app which isn't bad and multiple exposure app.

8.EVF and LCD are step above XE1 but EVF is unlikely to be as good as XT1 but it really is superb.

9. Manual focusing is well implemented and way better than X100s, XE1 and I presume XE2 (same as X100s). This is a big plus but now the XT1 matches and sounds like improves on even the A7r.

10. The lens selection issue is less important when you consider both cameras can use legacy lenses and there is a smart adapter for Canon lenses (AF is hideously slow though). So you can use faster lenses. I use a Rokkor 50 F1.4 which is gorgeous, a Canon FD 1.8 which is gorgeous and so on.

But of course you can do that with Fuji. Menus are fine about the same as Fuji. Buttons etc may be a bit nicer on the Sony.

Fuji strengths:

1. Fabulous lens selection. Fuji has chipped away at this and their lenses are superb and as you point out faster. One question though is does that faster lens = more DOF control as you think compared to full frame? You lose some blurred background when you use APSc. How much? I am not sure - others may know exactly how much. But I suspect F1.4  APSc= F2.8 on full frame for background blur?? Perhaps not that much. But you get the idea.

Also with full frame noone seems to mention - it give a larger field of view. You get a wider view with every focal length.

2. Great colour although XE2 colour - ?? Better or worse - you decide. Skin smoothing at ISO3200 and above is bad - lets hope these bad habits that are entering in to what was essentially a perfect colour are corrected in Xt1.

3. XT1 ISO dial - looks awesome.

4. Better manual focus system with XT1 but not with lesser models.

5. EVF is likely to be better with less cluttered display. Sony likes their screens messy.

6.More customisation. A7r has about 3 custom buttons XT1 has 6. Not sure if other Sony buttons can be reassigned so this may not be a point.

7. Fast SD card compatibiity.

8. Tracking AF - a big difference.

9. Faster AF - I imagine that would account for practically nothing in most situations. AF is fast on A7r as well. A millisecond here or there doesn't concern me. Fast AF tracking does.

10. Faster FPS - 8 versus about 3 with A7r.

11. Nice looking remote control app. Haven't checked the Sony one but the Nex 6 was very basic.

12. Both cameras have great auto white balance. But I think Fuji may be a bit better.

13. The question of lossy RAW  - a lot of threads about this. A7r files are definitely smaller than D800e ones. I don't see any problem so far. It may be a good trade off against even larger files.But yes that is something to consider and DPrreview found fault with Sony jpeg when noise reduction was turned on. So something there needs to be sorted with Sony. They need to offer a lossless RAW option.

14. Fuj does regular firmware updates - like twice a year since I owned XE1. I believe Sony tends not to.

15. Sony has an erratic history with products in cameras. Fuji seems focused and determined to make the best.

Lets face it you are talking about arguably the 2 finest cameras on the market here.

Sorry for the long post. Bottom line - its 24mp or 36mp full frame versus APSc 16mp Xtrans and the lens selection for Fuji versus Sony only starting.

One thing I can say is there is a definite gain of full frame over APSc Xtrans and no matter how much marketing to the contrary I don't believe it. There is. And those Sony Exmor 24 and 36mp sensors are simply the best on the market at present.

Look at the A7r images posted on fredmiranda site. Wow.

But XT1 - wow and image quality should be stunning also. Sony will be just better as there is a reason why companies make full frame.

Hard choice. I plan on having both. I hope I actually use the XT1 enough to justify it as I am loving the A7r for now. There are mixed reactions over at the Sony forum though about the A7 cameras. Not everyone loves them. I think XT1 will have more happy owners and be more universally loved as much as a camera can be.


 Astrophotographer 10's gear list:Astrophotographer 10's gear list
Sony Alpha a7R II Sony Alpha a7R III Sony FE 55mm F1.8 Zeiss Batis 85mm F1.8 Zeiss Loxia 21mm F2.8 +1 more
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