Sony-Fuji system advice

Started 3 months ago | Questions thread
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Digishooter2021 Junior Member • Posts: 29
Sony-Fuji system advice

I have read many of the threads on Sony vs. Fuji, but wanted to lay out my thinking and solicit advice, because the trade offs are proving very difficult to weigh.  
I currently have a Sony NEX 5N, the two kit lenses, the 16 mm, wide angle and fisheye attachments and LAEA-2. I have a couple of old Leica lenses and several old, heavy Nikkors. I think it’s time to upgrade for the advances in AF and sensor technology. I understand that camera bodies are more disposable than lenses, given the inevitable advances of technology, and want to invest in better lenses this time around, but therefore don’t want to change systems after this.  I’m about 60 years old and figure I have 2-3 cameras left to purchase (just being realistic). I mainly focus on travel photography, landscapes, family (grandchildren one day?), and have gotten into birding a bit with the pandemic — owls abound in NYC these days. I have decided that I won’t ever go FF.  The lenses are too expensive, big, and heavy, and the quality of APS-C images and the tech packed into smaller lighter crop bodies is quite competitive and more than enough for my non-professional needs.

The Tradeoffs

I am considering the a6400 and the Fuji XS10, XT-3/4. I prefer the 6400 to the 6600, because it has flash for the rare times I need it (I’ll never get an external flash), and IBIS seems relatively unnecessary given stabilized lenses. (I’m willing to forego stabilization when using Leica lenses, etc.) It also seems like a great bang for the buck, and on the theory that bodies are less permanent than lenses, I’d rather invest in lenses that the latest, greatest body, which will be obsolete soon enough.

If I were to go for the Sony, I would definitely get the 70-350 for birding etc.  I’m on the fence about whether to get the 18-135 or Tamron 17-70. (I understand the Tamron is considered to be a better lens, but the versatility of the 18-135 is compelling, and avoiding lens changes while out and about for general photography is also a bonus.) Any primes would come later. I’d likely keep the 5n with the 16 mm on it as a lightweight backup and lowlight option for museums etc.

Now the even harder part: the Fuji system.  The things I don’t like about Sony are the ergonomics (I love the small size on the one hand, but the body is almost too small, and I worry that will become more pronounced with the bigger lenses I’m considering. The second thing is the menu system. The Fuji’s seem to have better ergonomics and controls, and slightly worse AF by most accounts.  The XS10 seems to be the Fuji value play (as is the a6400 for Sony), but the comparable lenses seem to be generally heavier, slower and more expensive. And, the cameras themselves, especially the XTs are considerably more expensive too. Finally, while I’m by no means a Lightroom expert, I understand that Fuji's images are better processed on a different system, which I’m not eager to purchase/learn.

if Sony were to come out with an APS-C in a different form factor, I think my choice would be easy. I gather that’s probably unlikely because such a model would even more directly compete with their excellent FF lines.

A final wrinkle, I briefly considered 4/3 (Panasonic/Olympus) because of the size, range, availability of lenses, etc., but I think I ultimately have concluded that the APS-C sensor hits the sweet spot for me.


So, I know that I’ve covered a lot of ground, but would appreciate how others (particularly former Fuji shooters) analyzed these trade offs, how you reached your decision, and what your experience has been.  (I will also post this on the Fuji forum to get the views from Fuji users.)

 Digishooter2021's gear list:Digishooter2021's gear list
Fujifilm X-T3 Fujifilm XF 16-80mm F4
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