1. Reminder: Please use our affiliate links for holiday shopping!

X-E1 vs E-M5

Discussion in 'Fuji X Forum' started by tdp, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. tdp

    tdp Guest

    I picked up the X-E1 with 35mm lens 5 days ago and I've been shooting with it every day since. I've had an E-M5 since April, along with some lenses. I thought some people might like a comparison of the two. I have been shooting for about 30 years with a multitude of equipment, besides these two cameras I have a couple of Canon DSLRs and a handful of lenses.

    First off I like BOTH the E-M5 and X-E1, I have no intention in bashing one or the other. Any negative points I might bring up are just my opinion.

    The X-E1: It is light. It is the right size, all the controls are where they should be and easy to read and use. The 35mm lens impressed me in external build quality. The software menus are easy to navigate. The small grip on the front along with the slight bump out on the back right side make the camera easy to hold securely.

    Image quality from this lens and sensor are extremely impressive. That is the number 1 thing about this camera, it produces great photos.

    I set the shutter speed to auto and set the f-stop as I wanted. I found auto ISO limited at 6400 worked just fine out and about in the city at night. I didn't go above 6400 because I have no need to. I did dial up/down the EV Comp in situations I felt the camera meter might not go the way I wanted...no different from any other camera. From off to on and ready to shoot is quick. Manual focus is easy as well, for a focus-by-wire setup it isn't bad at all. I had no issue with the EVF or LCD, auto switching worked like a charm. I used a SanDisk Ultra 30Mb/s 16GB card and didn't have any issue with write speeds or buffer issues.

    There are some areas where this camera does not shine. In dark situations it seeks to focus and might not catch at all, depending on the situation. Video is jumpy. The SD card is a little hard to get out (it is next to the battery under the camera). The camera has no built in IS, the LCD does not articulate. The camera is not weather sealed.

    Bottom line on the E-X1 is this: the camera is easy to use, nice size and weight, all the right dials at the right places and it produces extremely good images. Other features (some) people expect on modern cameras are either missing or poorly function.


    The E-M5: When you pick it up, the weight and the feel of the metal scream quality camera. It is small...tiny even, but has weight.

    Setup is a bit more complex but reading the manual is all you really need to set it up. It has all the dials and buttons required (and you can configure them how you like). The camera has a small sensor but gives big results. And this thing is FAST. Fast to power up, fast to focus and fast to save. Oh and 9 FPS if you are into that sort of thing. You can pretty much adapt any lens out there to work with this camera, and there are a whole lot of native lenses to choose from as well. ISO is clean enough up to 6400 but.....

    ....IBIS is so magical you will find you keep the ISOs down and the shutter speed MUCH slower than you would ever try on any other camera. And video? With non-legacy glass it is almost like having a steady-cam.

    The camera isn't perfect. The size is almost too small. Besides being a bit difficult to handle (you need to re-learn how to hold the camera), the buttons and dials seem cramped and it is either too easy to hit the wrong thing or too difficult to hit the thing you want. The optional grip or leather wrap helps out a bit with the physical size. The UWA 7-14 from Panasonic has an internal flare issue that produces results you won't see on other UWAs (like the Canon 16-35 II L that I have for my 5DII).

    Bottom line: Tiny camera jam packed with all the features you can imagine, with specs that kick butt. 9 FPS and 5 axis IS? Sounds big and expensive to me but the E-M5 is neither. A lot of glass options as well but a few have some issues.



    The X-E1....that sensor spits out images that are shockingly good, great even. If you want higher quality images and don't care about added bells and whistles, this is the camera for you.
    The E-M5...reminds me of that little gun on MIB 1, tiny, well made...cute even and packs one serious punch. This camera can do anything and do it fast. If you want an all a rounder with lots of lens choices, the E-M5 will make you happy.
     
  2. Herman

    Herman The Image Stimulator

    Jul 11, 2010
    The Netherlands
    Herman
    Thanks for starting this thread.
    Do you personally prefer Fuji?
    Has Fuji OIS aboard?
     
  3. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    Thanks for the comparison. It is largely along the lines of what I thought might be the case, and it is good to have confirmation of that. For my usage I couldn't see something like the X-E1 replacing an E-M5, but they do look like a great pair of cameras to shoot with together or alternate between.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. tdp

    tdp Guest

    The Fuji does not have any OIS on-board. The new Fuji zoom lens does have OIS. I expect it will preform like most of the other image stabilization offerings out there: it will do a pretty good job and give you 1-2 stops of speed. IBIS outperforms any other OIS I have ever used by a great margin, but it does bring into question how do you clean the sensor.
     
  5. grusch.info

    grusch.info New to SC

    4
    Oct 15, 2012
    Hi
    Thanks for the comparison.

    What about the EVF of the Fuji?
    Is it laggy or is the some latency recognizable?

    THANKS
     
  6. tdp

    tdp Guest

    Not that I have noticed, but I have read that opinion from various sources. It must be how/where I shoot that is causing me to not notice it.
     
  7. grusch.info

    grusch.info New to SC

    4
    Oct 15, 2012
    Because the xpro1 evf is very laggy if you Pan around

    Sent from my iPhone using Srs Cmpcts
     
  8. tdp

    tdp Guest

    Um....from my non scientific test just now, sitting on the couch and panning left to right and back and forth it seems fine to me. Oh an now my pets are looking at me funny.
     
  9. Isoterica

    Isoterica SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 6, 2011
    Awesome analogy lol
     
  10. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    How does the EVF display look when static? Does the 2+ million dots make a difference? Does it provide a good representation of exposure and colour?
     
  11. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I'm not speaking from experience, but I read that it was sensitive (maybe the wrong word) enough to show the differences between the film simulations. I'd be interested to hear more about it as well. How does it compare and contrast (pun intended) to the VF of the E-M5
     
  12. tdp

    tdp Guest

    I didn't notice the EVF being good or bad while using it, I guess I kind of ignored it. Based off that, however many dots it has must be enough. I just fired up both cameras and did some more looking around with the camera, this time paying more attention to the EVFs than whatever I was looking at through the lens.

    The XE1 EVF looks like an E VF. It looks like an electronic image. The EM5, to my eye....does not look electronic. That may be due to number of dots, refresh rate, physical construction...whatever but the EM5's EFV is better than the XE1's, but I didn't notice it until I intentionally paid attention to the EVFs.

    When I +/- EV in the EM5 the resulting image on the EVF reacts instantly. When I do the same on the XE1 it is a fraction slower, but not "Slow".
     
  13. tdp

    tdp Guest

    You can see the results of film simulation via the EVF on both cameras. To me, (when using the film simulations I like) it is difficult to ascertain when dark is too dark in the more contrasty simulations - in both cameras. I like heavy contrast, but I feel safer butchering the RAW files in PP over letting the camera butcher them for me.

    Both of them will give you the feel of particular film simulation will look like, but the final files on a computer look much better.


    One note: You can use film simulations (and manual contrast/color/sharpening) settings in RAW and see the result in the EVF an LCD, but the effect will only show in PP up if you use Fuji's included RAW software.
     
  14. Gary

    Gary SC All-Pro

    Aug 19, 2012
    Southern California
    Gary Ayala
    This was very informative, thanks tdp.

    G
     
  15. tdp

    tdp Guest

    No problems. I know the folks in the US have to pre-order and wait and sometimes it is quite easy to worry about the pre-order since the camera isn't out on the streets there yet - I hope my information helps them in their order/not order decision.
     
  16. tdp

    tdp Guest

  17. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    it looks so small compared to the X-Pro1
     
  18. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    I'm really quite surprised. I had expected that this would be an area where the Fuji would come out in front based on it having the latest generation Sony-based EVF. Maybe increasingly higher resolution EVFs aren't the answer to making them more comfortable to look at.
     
  19. tdp

    tdp Guest

    I was just at a camera store today and the X-Pro1 was on display. The X-E1 is perhaps 1/3rd smaller than the X-Pro1.
     
  20. flash

    flash SC Veteran

    372
    May 6, 2011
    Gordon
    It's not just the evf unit. I have an a77 and NEX7. Sure they have the same basic evf unit. But the implementation is different. You wouldn't think they're the same. The a77's evf looks vastly better.

    Gordon
     
    • Like Like x 1