Fujifilm X-A3 vs X-E1
The Fujifilm X-A3 and the Fujifilm X-E1 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in August 2016 and September 2012. Both the X-A3 and the X-E1 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The X-A3 has a resolution of 24 megapixels, whereas the X-E1 provides 16 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|Mirrorless system camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Fujifilm X mount lenses||Fujifilm X mount lenses|
|24 MP, APS-C Sensor||16 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|1080/60p Video||1080/24p Video|
|ISO 200-6,400 (100 - 25,600)||ISO 200-6,400 (100 - 25,600)|
|No viewfinder, LCD framing||Electronic viewfinder (2360k dots)|
|3.0 LCD, 1040k dots||2.8 LCD, 460k dots|
|Tilting touchscreen||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|6 shutter flaps per second||6 shutter flaps per second|
|410 shots per battery charge||350 shots per battery charge|
|117 x 67 x 40 mm, 339 g||129 x 75 x 38 mm, 350 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Fujifilm X-A3 and the Fujifilm X-E1? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Fujifilm X-A3 and the Fujifilm X-E1. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The X-A3 can be obtained in three different colors (silver, brown, pink), while the X-E1 is available in two color-versions (black, silver).
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-A3. Moreover, the X-E1 is slightly heavier (3 percent) than the X-A3. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X-A3 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 compare the optics available 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.
Concerning battery life, the X-A3 gets 410 shots out of its NP-W126S battery, while the X-E1 can take 350 images on a single charge of its NP-W126 power pack. The power pack in the X-A3 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|Fujifilm X-A3||4.6 in||2.6 in||1.6 in||12.0 oz||410||n||Aug 2016||399|
|Fujifilm X-E1||5.1 in||3.0 in||1.5 in||12.3 oz||350||n||Sep 2012||999|
|Fujifilm X-T200||4.8 in||3.3 in||2.2 in||13.1 oz||270||n||Jan 2020||699|
|Fujifilm X-T30||4.6 in||3.3 in||1.9 in||13.5 oz||380||n||Feb 2019||899|
|Fujifilm X-A7||4.7 in||2.7 in||1.6 in||11.3 oz||440||n||Sep 2019||499|
|Fujifilm X-A5||4.6 in||2.7 in||1.6 in||12.7 oz||450||n||Jan 2018||399|
|Fujifilm X-E3||4.8 in||2.9 in||1.7 in||11.9 oz||350||n||Sep 2017||899|
|Fujifilm X-T20||4.6 in||3.3 in||1.6 in||13.5 oz||350||n||Jan 2017||899|
|Fujifilm X-A10||4.6 in||2.6 in||1.6 in||11.7 oz||410||n||Dec 2016||399|
|Fujifilm X-A2||4.6 in||2.6 in||1.6 in||12.3 oz||410||n||Jan 2015||399|
|Fujifilm X-T10||4.6 in||3.3 in||1.6 in||13.4 oz||350||n||May 2015||799|
|Fujifilm X-A1||4.6 in||2.6 in||1.5 in||11.6 oz||350||n||Sep 2013||399|
|Fujifilm X-E2||5.1 in||3.0 in||1.5 in||12.3 oz||350||n||Oct 2013||999|
|Fujifilm X-M1||4.6 in||2.6 in||1.5 in||11.6 oz||350||n||Jun 2013||699|
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. 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-A3 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 60 percent) than the X-E1, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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.
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. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and 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.
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.
With 24MP, the X-A3 offers a higher resolution than the X-E1 (16MP), but the X-A3 has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.92μm versus 4.80μm for the X-E1). However, the X-A3 is a much more recent model (by 3 years and 11 months) than the X-E1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. 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.
The resolution advantage of the Fujifilm X-A3 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the X-A3 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30 x 20 inches or 76.2 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24 x 16 inches or 61 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20 x 13.3 inches or 50.8 x 33.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Fujifilm X-E1 are 24.5 x 16.3 inches or 62.2 x 41.5 cm for good quality, 19.6 x 13.1 inches or 49.7 x 33.2 cm for very good quality, and 16.3 x 10.9 inches or 41.5 x 27.6 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Fujifilm X-A3 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 200 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The Fujifilm X-E1 offers exactly the same ISO settings.
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the X-A3 provides a higher frame rate than the X-E1. It can shoot video footage at 1080/60p, while the X-E1 is limited to 1080/24p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range 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-A3 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Fujifilm X-A3 and Fujifilm X-E1 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The X-A3 has a touchscreen, while the X-E1 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.The X-A3 has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the X-E1 does not have a selfie-screen.
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the X-A3 is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
The Fujifilm X-A3 has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the X-A3 and the X-E1 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Fujifilm X-A3 and Fujifilm X-E1 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
It is notable that the X-A3 offers wifi support, while the X-E1 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Both the X-A3 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-A3 was followed by the Fujifilm X-A5. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Fujifilm website.
So what conclusions can be drawn? Is the Fujifilm X-A3 better than the Fujifilm X-E1 or vice versa? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Advantages of the Fujifilm X-A3:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (24 vs 16MP) with a 23% higher linear resolution.
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p 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 (1040k vs 460k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
- More compact: Is smaller (117x67mm vs 129x75mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (410 versus 350) on a single battery charge.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built 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: Reflects 3 years and 11 months of technical progress since the X-E1 launch.
Arguments in favor 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 composition and settings control.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in September 2012).
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the X-A3 is the clear winner of the match-up (15 : 4 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Fujifilm X-A3 and the Fujifilm X-E1 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the X-A3 or the X-E1 perform in practice. 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 following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|Fujifilm X-A3||..||74/100||4.5/5||..||4/5||Aug 2016||399|
|Fujifilm X-E1||+ +||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||999|
|Fujifilm X-T200||..||82/100||4/5||..||4.5/5||Jan 2020||699|
|Fujifilm X-T30||+ +||84/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2019||899|
|Fujifilm X-A7||..||81/100||4/5||..||3.5/5||Sep 2019||499|
|Fujifilm X-A5||+||..||4/5||4/5||3.5/5||Jan 2018||399|
|Fujifilm X-E3||+||84/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2017||899|
|Fujifilm X-T20||+ +||82/100||5/5||..||4.5/5||Jan 2017||899|
|Fujifilm X-A10||..||..||4/5||..||4/5||Dec 2016||399|
|Fujifilm X-A2||..||..||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2015||399|
|Fujifilm X-T10||+ +||80/100||5/5||4/5||5/5||May 2015||799|
|Fujifilm X-A1||..||..||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Sep 2013||399|
|Fujifilm X-E2||..||80/100||4.5/5||..||5/5||Oct 2013||999|
|Fujifilm X-M1||+||77/100||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Jun 2013||699|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. 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 would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just make your choice using the following search menu. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
- Canon 10D vs Fujifilm X-E1
- Canon 1D Mark II vs Fujifilm X-A3
- Canon 1D Mark III vs Fujifilm X-E1
- Canon 650D vs Fujifilm X-A3
- Canon M50 vs Fujifilm X-E1
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Fujifilm X-Pro3
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Nikon D850
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Nikon L840
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Sony NEX-3N
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Sony RX10 III
- Fujifilm X-E1 vs Fujifilm X20
- Fujifilm X-E1 vs Sony HX400V
Specifications: Fujifilm X-A3 vs Fujifilm X-E1
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||Fujifilm X mount lenses||Fujifilm X mount lenses|
|Launch Date||August 2016||September 2012|
|Launch Price||USD 399||USD 999|
|Sensor Specs||Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.5 x 15.7 mm||23.6 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||368.95 mm2||368.16 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||28.3 mm||28.3 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||24 Megapixels||16 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||6000 x 4000 pixels||4896 x 3264 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.92 μm||4.80 μm|
|Pixel Density||6.50 MP/cm2||4.34 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||1080/24p Video|
|ISO Setting||200 - 6,400 ISO||200 - 6,400 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 25,600 ISO||100 - 25,600 ISO|
|Screen Specs||Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|Viewfinder Type||no viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||2360k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||2.8inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||460k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen||Fixed screen|
|Touch Input||Touchscreen||no Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/4000s||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||6 shutter flaps/s||6 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/32000s||no E-Shutter|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||no Intervalometer|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||no MIC socket||External MIC port|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Fujifilm X-A3||Fujifilm X-E1|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||410 shots per charge||350 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
117 x 67 x 40 mm
(4.6 x 2.6 x 1.6 in)
129 x 75 x 38 mm
(5.1 x 3.0 x 1.5 in)
|Camera Weight||339 g (12.0 oz)||350 g (12.3 oz)|
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