Fuji X100s vs Sony RX1 – Which One is Better?

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The Fuji X100s is an updated version of Fuji’s highly popular X100 premium fixed lens compact camera.  With the X100s, Fuji have done a masterful job in addressing the issues that most shooters had with the previous version.  It has an all new Hybrid viewfinder, a blazing fast autofocus system and it’s loaded up with Fuji’s new X-Trans II sensor and EXR II processing technology which produces breathtakingly beautiful images.  But just how will Fuji’s new premium compact stand up against the big daddy (speaking figuratively of course, as the RX1 is actually quite small) of all compacts, the full frame Sony RX1?

Sony RX1 in a nutshell…

In the RX1, Sony have created one masterpiece of a camera, and the combination of one of their finest 35mm full frame sensors with a 35mm Carl Zeiss lens that’s tailor made for it produces truly magical results.  But the Sony Magic comes at a price.  At nearly $2,800 USD, the RX1 is the most expensive fixed lens compact on the market, even more so when you factor in the cost of the a ‘la carte options like an Electronic Viewfinder ($449.99), Metal Lens Hood ($179.99) or the thumb grip ($249.99), but boy oh boy have Sony packed a lot of pixel power into RX1’s compact body, and it will produce still photos and videos that are truly sublime(Which is why we named the RX1 Our Favorite Compact Camera of 2012)

Fuji X100s in a nutshell…

As for the Fuji X100s, it builds on a platform that is already loved by scores of photographers, and although it looks nearly identical to it’s predecessor, the X-Trans II Sensor and updated EXR II processing tech add lightning fast autofocus performance to Fuji’s best in class image quality and make this camera sing.  It has beautiful retro styling that many will find appealing, and it innovative features such as the Hybrid Viewfinder will tip many on it’s direction.  Where the X100s lags a bit however, is in video performance, but the X100s is a still shooters dream.

Head to Head…

These are two great cameras and it’s not so much a matter of which one is better as it is which one is better for you.  At $1,299, the Fuji X100s comes in at less than half the price of the Sony RX1 and is a more complete camera as it already has a built in Viewfinder (Hybrid even!).  Each is equipped with a terrific lens, so we’ll call that a push – and although the Sony RX1 has a 35mm full frame sensor, it’s hard to beat the amazing image quality that you’ll get from a Fuji X-Trans.  Style wise, it’s a matter of preference…  do you like the modern look of the RX1 or the retro look of the X100s?

In the end, each is a terrific choice for photographers who want a luxury camera that’s easy to carry and take with you anywhere that you go.  The RX1 is a more well rounded camera as it’ll shoot video as well as it does stills, but in this price range, you might also want to consider an interchangeable lens camera like the Olympus OM-D E-M5 and on the days you want to travel light, just pop on a good lens like the Panasonic Lumix 20mm 1.7, Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 25mm 1.4 or Olympus 45mm 1.8 and off you go.

Buy the Fuji X100s and the Sony RX1 on Amazon Here

(video comparison above by Mike Kobal on Youtube)


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