PW

Fujifilm X-E1 versus Fujifilm X-T20

The Fujifilm X-E1 and the Fujifilm X-T20 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in September 2012 and January 2017. Both the X-E1 and the X-T20 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The X-E1 has a resolution of 16 megapixel, whereas the X-T20 provides 24 MP. 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-E1 vs Fujifilm X-T20

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Fujifilm X-E1 and the Fujifilm X-T20. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter. If you prefer, you can also use the toggle button to switch to a comparison in percentage terms (in this case, the camera on the left side – the X-E1 – represents the basis for the calculations across all the size and weight measures).

Snapsort Fujifilm X-E1 vs Fujifilm X-T20
Compare X-E1 versus X-T20 top
Compare X-E1 and X-T20 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Fujifilm X-T20 is somewhat larger (1 percent) than the Fujifilm X-E1. Moreover, the X-T20 is markedly heavier (9 percent) than the X-E1. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X-E1 nor the X-T20 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 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.

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)
Fujifilm X-E1» 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Sep 2012 999- i
Fujifilm X-T20« 4.6 in 3.3 in 1.6 in 13.5 oz 350 n Jan 2017 899 i i
Canon M5« » 4.6 in 3.5 in 2.4 in 15.1 oz 295 n Sep 2016 979 i i
Fujifilm X-T100« » 4.8 in 3.3 in 1.9 in 15.8 oz 430 n May 2018 599 i i
Fujifilm X-A5« » 4.6 in 2.7 in 1.6 in 12.7 oz 450 n Jan 2018 399 i i
Fujifilm X-E3« » 4.8 in 2.9 in 1.7 in 11.9 oz 350 n Sep 2017 899 i i
Fujifilm X-A10« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 11.7 oz 410 n Dec 2016 399 i i
Fujifilm X-T10« » 4.6 in 3.3 in 1.6 in 13.4 oz 350 n May 2015 799- i
Fujifilm X-A2« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 12.3 oz 410 n Jan 2015 399- i
Fujifilm X-E2« » 5.1 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 12.3 oz 350 n Oct 2013 999- i
Fujifilm X-M1« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 11.6 oz 350 n Jun 2013 699 i i
Fujifilm X-A1« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 11.6 oz 350 n Sep 2013 399- i
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » 5.5 in 3.2 in 1.7 in 15.9 oz 300 n Jan 2012 1,699- i
Panasonic GX1« » 4.6 in 2.7 in 1.5 in 11.2 oz 320 n Nov 2011 949- i

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The X-T20 was somewhat cheaper (by 10 percent) than the X-E1 at launch, but both cameras fall into the same price category. 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-E1 vs Fujifilm X-T20

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants 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 and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.5. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Fujifilm X-E1 and Fujifilm X-T20 sensor measures

While the two cameras under review share the same sensor size, the X-T20 offers a higher resolution of 24 megapixel, compared with 16 MP of the X-E1. This megapixel advantage translates into a 23 percent gain in linear resolution. On the other hand, these sensor specs imply that the X-T20 has a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 3.92μm versus 4.80μm for the X-E1). However, it should be noted that the X-T20 is much more recent (by 4 years and 4 months) than the X-E1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that compensate for the smaller pixel size. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.

X-E1 versus X-T20 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for most 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 table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Fujifilm X-E1» APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----
Fujifilm X-T20« APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/30p----
Canon M5« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.412.4126277
Fujifilm X-T100« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/15p----
Fujifilm X-A5« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/15p----
Fujifilm X-E3« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/30p----
Fujifilm X-A10« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----
Fujifilm X-T10« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----
Fujifilm X-A2« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----
Fujifilm X-E2« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----
Fujifilm X-M1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----
Fujifilm X-A1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/30p----
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----
Panasonic GX1« » Four Thirds 15.8 4592 34481080/60p20.810.670355

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the X-T20 provides a better video resolution than the X-E1. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the X-E1 is limited to 1080/24p.

 

Feature comparison: Fujifilm X-E1 vs Fujifilm X-T20

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The X-E1 and the X-T20 are similar in the sense that both feature an electronic viewfinder, which is helpful when framing images in bright sunlight. Moreover, their viewfinders offer an identical resolution of 2360k dots. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Fujifilm X-E1 and Fujifilm X-T20 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras. If needed, the dpreview camera hub, for example, contains further detail on the cameras' specs.

Core Features
  Camera 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
Fujifilm X-E1»2360 n 2.8 460 fixed n 4000 6.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-T20«2360 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.0 Y n
Canon M5« »2360 n 3.2 1620 tilting Y 4000 9.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-T100« »2360 n 3.0 1040 full-flex Y 4000 6.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-A5« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 6.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-E3« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 4000 8.0 n n
Fujifilm X-A10« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting n 4000 6.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-T10« »2360 n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 8.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-A2« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n
Fujifilm X-E2« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 4000 7.0 Y n
Fujifilm X-M1« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n
Fujifilm X-A1« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 4000 5.6 Y n
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »1440 n 3.0 1230 fixed n 4000 6.0 n n
Panasonic GX1« »- n 3.0 460 fixed Y 4000 4.2 Y n

The X-T20 is a current model that online retailers, such as amazon, will have in stock. In contrast, the X-E1 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the X-E1 was succeeded by the Fujifilm X-E2.

Review summary: Fujifilm X-E1 vs Fujifilm X-T20

So how do things add up? Is the Fujifilm X-E1 better than the Fujifilm X-T20 or vice versa? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.


Reasons to prefer the Fujifilm X-E1:

  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in September 2012).


Advantages of the Fujifilm X-T20:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (24 vs 16MP), which boosts linear resolution by 23%.
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 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: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8 vs 6 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • More modern: Reflects 4 years and 4 months of technical progress since the X-E1 launch.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the X-T20 is the clear winner of the contest (8 : 1 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-E1 01:08 X-T20

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the X-E1 or the X-T20 handle or perform in practice. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate. This is why expert reviews are important. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review scores
  Camera cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Fujifilm X-E1»HiRec79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2012 999- i
Fujifilm X-T20«HiRec82/1005/5-4.5/5 Jan 2017 899 i i
Canon M5« »Rec82/1004/54.5/54/5 Sep 2016 979 i i
Fujifilm X-T100« »----- May 2018 599 i i
Fujifilm X-A5« »----3.5/5 Jan 2018 399 i i
Fujifilm X-E3« »Rec84/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2017 899 i i
Fujifilm X-A10« »--4/5-4/5 Dec 2016 399 i i
Fujifilm X-T10« »HiRec80/1005/54/55/5 May 2015 799- i
Fujifilm X-A2« »--4.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2015 399- i
Fujifilm X-E2« »-80/1004.5/5-5/5 Oct 2013 999- i
Fujifilm X-M1« »Rec77/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jun 2013 699 i i
Fujifilm X-A1« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Sep 2013 399- i
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »HiRec79/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 1,699- i
Panasonic GX1« »Rec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2011 949- i

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

 

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, please contact me, and I will try to add information on that model to the database.

vs

    You are here  »   »