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Fujifilm X-A1 versus Fujifilm X-E1

The Fujifilm X-A1 and the Fujifilm X-E1 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in September 2013 and September 2012. Both the X-A1 and the X-E1 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 16 megapixel. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison: Fujifilm X-A1 vs Fujifilm X-E1

The physical size and weight of the Fujifilm X-A1 and the Fujifilm X-E1 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. You can also use the toggle button to switch to a percentage comparison if you prefer that the measures are being expressed in relative terms (in this case, the camera on the left side – the X-A1 – represents the basis for the calculations across all the size and weight measures).

Compare Fujifilm X-A1 vs Fujifilm X-E1
Compare X-A1 versus X-E1 top
Compare X-A1 and X-E1 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Fujifilm X-E1 is notably larger (23 percent) than the Fujifilm X-A1. Moreover, the X-E1 is markedly heavier (6 percent) than the X-A1. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X-A1 nor the X-E1 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can find an overview of suitable optics in the Fujinon X Lens Catalog. Mirrorless cameras, such as the two under consideration, have the additional advantage of having a short flange to focal plane distance, which makes it possible to mount many lenses from other systems onto the camera via adapters.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-A1» 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 11.6 oz 350 n Sep 2013 399- i Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E1« 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Sep 2012 999- i Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-A5« » 4.6 in 2.7 in 1.6 in 12.7 oz 450 n Jan 2018 399 i i Fujifilm X-A5
Fujifilm X-A3« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 12.0 oz 410 n Aug 2016 399 i i Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-A10« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 11.7 oz 410 n Dec 2016 399 i i Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« » 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Jan 2016 699- i Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 12.3 oz 410 n Jan 2015 399- i Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« » 4.6 in 3.3 in 1.6 in 13.4 oz 350 n May 2015 799- i Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-E2« » 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Oct 2013 999- i Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-M1« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 11.6 oz 350 n Jun 2013 699- i Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » 5.5 in 3.2 in 1.7 in 15.9 oz 300 n Jan 2012 1,699- i Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-6« » 4.7 in 2.6 in 1.7 in 12.2 oz 360 n Sep 2012 999- i Sony NEX-6

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The X-A1 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 60 percent) than the X-E1, which puts it into a different market segment. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

 

Sensor comparison: Fujifilm X-A1 vs Fujifilm X-E1

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

In terms of chip-set technology, the X-A1 uses a more advanced image processing engine (EXR Processor II) than the X-E1 (EXR Processor), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Fujifilm X-A1 and Fujifilm X-E1 sensor measures

Even though the X-A1 has a slightly larger sensor, both cameras offer the same resolution of 16 megapixel. This implies that the X-A1 has a lower pixel density and larger individual pixels (with a pixel pitch of 4.80μm versus 4.80μm for the X-E1), which gives it a potential advantage in terms of light gathering capacity. In addition, the X-A1 is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year) than the X-E1, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the X-E1 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

X-A1 versus X-E1 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-A1» APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E1« APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-A5« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/15p----Fujifilm X-A5
Fujifilm X-A3« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p----Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-A10« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-E2« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-M1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-6« » APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i23.713.1101878Sony NEX-6

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the X-A1 provides a higher frame rate than the X-E1. It can shoot video footage at 1080/30p, while the X-E1 is limited to 1080/24p.

 

Feature comparison: Fujifilm X-A1 vs Fujifilm X-E1

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the X-E1 has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the X-A1 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Fujifilm X-A1 and Fujifilm X-E1 along with similar information for a selection of comparators. If needed, the dpreview camera hub, for example, contains further detail on the cameras' specs.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec)
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-A1»- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E1«2360 n 2.8 460 fixed n 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-A5« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-A5
Fujifilm X-A3« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-A10« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting n 4000 6.0 Y n Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 4000 7.0 Y n Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« »2360 n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 8.0 Y n Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-E2« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 4000 7.0 Y n Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-M1« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »1440 n 3.0 1230 fixed n 4000 6.0 n n Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-6« »2359 n 3.0 921 tilting n 4000 10.0 Y n Sony NEX-6

The X-A1 writes its imaging data to SDHC cards, while the X-E1 uses SDXC cards.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-A1»Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E1«YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-A5« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y-YFujifilm X-A5
Fujifilm X-A3« »Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-A10« »-stereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« »Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-E2« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y--Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-M1« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-6« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Sony NEX-6

Both the X-A1 and the X-E1 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The X-E1 was replaced by the Fujifilm X-E2, while the X-A1 was followed by the Fujifilm X-A2.

Review summary: Fujifilm X-A1 vs Fujifilm X-E1

So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Fujifilm X-A1 or the Fujifilm X-E1 – has the upper hand? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


Arguments in favor of the Fujifilm X-A1:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (EXR Processor II vs EXR Processor).
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/30p versus 1080/24p).
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.8") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (920k vs 460k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • More compact: Is smaller (117x67mm vs 129x75mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi build in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (60 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 1 year after the X-E1).


Advantages of the Fujifilm X-E1:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in September 2012).

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the X-A1 is the clear winner of the match-up (10 : 4 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision.

X-A1 10:04 X-E1

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the X-A1 and the X-E1 in practical situations. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased. This is why expert reviews are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). The detailed reviews can be accessed by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Fujifilm X-A1»--4.5/5-4.5/5 Sep 2013 399- i Fujifilm X-A1
Fujifilm X-E1«HiRec79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2012 999- i Fujifilm X-E1
Fujifilm X-A5« »Rec-4/54/53.5/5 Jan 2018 399 i i Fujifilm X-A5
Fujifilm X-A3« »-74/1004.5/5-4/5 Aug 2016 399 i i Fujifilm X-A3
Fujifilm X-A10« »--4/5-4/5 Dec 2016 399 i i Fujifilm X-A10
Fujifilm X-E2S« »-77/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jan 2016 699- i Fujifilm X-E2S
Fujifilm X-A2« »--4.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2015 399- i Fujifilm X-A2
Fujifilm X-T10« »HiRec80/1005/54/55/5 May 2015 799- i Fujifilm X-T10
Fujifilm X-E2« »-80/1004.5/5-5/5 Oct 2013 999- i Fujifilm X-E2
Fujifilm X-M1« »Rec77/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jun 2013 699- i Fujifilm X-M1
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »HiRec79/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 1,699- i Fujifilm X-Pro1
Sony NEX-6« »HiRec78/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Sep 2012 999- i Sony NEX-6

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

 

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make your choice using the following search menu. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, please contact me, and I will try to locate and add the respective data to the application.

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