Fujifilm X100 vs Sony NEX-7
The Fujifilm FinePix X100 and the Sony Alpha NEX-7 are two enthusiast cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in September 2010 and August 2011. The X100 is a fixed lens compact, while the NEX-7 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. Both cameras are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The Fujifilm has a resolution of 12.2 megapixels, whereas the Sony provides 24 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Fujifilm X100||Sony NEX-7|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|35mm f/2.0||Sony E mount lenses|
|12.2 MP, APS-C Sensor||24 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|720/30p Video||1080/60i Video|
|ISO 200-6,400 (100 - 12,800)||ISO 100-16,000|
|Electronic viewfinder (1440k dots)||Electronic viewfinder (2359k dots)|
|2.8 LCD, 460k dots||3.0 LCD, 921k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)||Tilting screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|5 shutter flaps per second||10 shutter flaps per second|
|300 shots per battery charge||430 shots per battery charge|
|126 x 75 x 54 mm, 445 g||120 x 67 x 43 mm, 400 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Fujifilm FinePix X100 and the Sony Alpha NEX-7? 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 X100 and the Sony NEX-7. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony NEX-7 is notably smaller (15 percent) than the Fujifilm X100. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X100 nor the NEX-7 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the X100 has a lens built in, whereas the NEX-7 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can compare the optics available for the NEX-7 and their specifications in the Sony E-Mount Lens Catalog.
The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, just use the right or left arrows in the table to switch to the respective camera. Alternatively, you can also navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from the full list of cameras there.
|Fujifilm X100||5.0 in||3.0 in||2.1 in||15.7 oz||300||n||Sep 2010||1,199|
|Sony NEX-7||4.7 in||2.6 in||1.7 in||14.1 oz||430||n||Aug 2011||1,349|
|Canon G1 X||4.6 in||3.2 in||2.6 in||18.8 oz||250||n||Jan 2012||799|
|Fujifilm X100F||5.0 in||3.0 in||2.0 in||16.5 oz||390||n||Jan 2017||1,299|
|Fujifilm X30||4.7 in||2.8 in||2.4 in||14.9 oz||470||n||Aug 2014||599|
|Fujifilm X100T||5.0 in||2.9 in||2.0 in||15.5 oz||330||n||Sep 2014||1,299|
|Fujifilm X100S||5.0 in||2.9 in||2.1 in||15.7 oz||330||n||Jan 2013||1,299|
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109||4.6 in||2.6 in||2.2 in||14.3 oz||300||n||Sep 2014||1,195|
|Nikon D3100||4.9 in||3.8 in||3.0 in||17.8 oz||550||n||Aug 2010||599|
|Nikon D3000||5.0 in||3.8 in||2.5 in||18.9 oz||500||n||Jul 2009||599|
|Panasonic LX100||4.5 in||2.6 in||2.2 in||13.9 oz||300||n||Sep 2014||899|
|Sony A6400||4.7 in||2.6 in||2.0 in||14.2 oz||410||n||Jan 2019||899|
|Sony A6000||4.7 in||2.6 in||1.8 in||12.1 oz||360||n||Feb 2014||599|
|Sony A3000||5.0 in||3.6 in||3.3 in||14.5 oz||470||n||Aug 2013||329|
|Sony RX1||4.4 in||2.6 in||2.8 in||17.0 oz||270||n||Sep 2012||2,799|
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 listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The X100 was launched at a lower price than the NEX-7, despite having a lens built in. 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.
The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels 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 associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the NEX-7 is 2 percent smaller. 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.
Despite having a slightly smaller sensor, the NEX-7 offers a higher resolution of 24 megapixels, compared with 12.2 MP of the X100. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 3.90μm versus 5.53μm for the X100). However, it should be noted that the NEX-7 is a somewhat more recent model (by 11 months) than the X100, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that partly offset its pixel-size disadvantage.
The resolution advantage of the Sony NEX-7 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the NEX-7 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 X100 are 21.4 x 14.2 inches or 54.5 x 36.2 cm for good quality, 17.2 x 11.4 inches or 43.6 x 28.9 cm for very good quality, and 14.3 x 9.5 inches or 36.3 x 24.1 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Fujifilm FinePix X100 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 200 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Alpha NEX-7 are ISO 100 to ISO 16000 (no boost).
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. Of the two cameras under consideration, the NEX-7 has a markedly higher DXO score than the X100 (overall score 8 points higher), which will translate into better image quality. The advantage is based on 1.2 bits higher color depth, 1 EV in additional dynamic range, and -0 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|Canon G1 X||1.5-inch||14.2||4352||3264||1080/24p||21.7||10.8||644||60|
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Panasonic LX100||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||22.3||12.5||553||67|
|Sony RX1||Full Frame||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||25.1||14.3||2534||93|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the NEX-7 provides a better video resolution than the X100. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60i, while the Fujifilm is limited to 720/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The two cameras under review are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the NEX-7 offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the X100 (2359k vs 1440k dots). The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Fujifilm X100 and Sony NEX-7 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Canon G1 X||optical||n||3.0||922||Swivel||n||1/4000s||1.9||Y||Y|
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109||2764||n||3.0||921||fixed||n||1/4000s||11.0||n||Y|
The X100 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the NEX-7 uses SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards.
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 FinePix X100 and Sony Alpha NEX-7 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
|Canon G1 X||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
It is notable that the NEX-7 has a microphone port, which can help to improve the quality of audio recordings by attaching an external microphone. The X100 does not feature such a mic input.
Both the X100 and the NEX-7 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The X100 was replaced by the Fujifilm X100S, while the NEX-7 does not have a direct successor. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Fujifilm and Sony websites.
So what is the bottom line? Is the Fujifilm X100 better than the Sony NEX-7 or vice versa? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Arguments in favor of the Fujifilm FinePix X100:
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens built-in, whereas the NEX-7 requires a separate lens.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in September 2010).
Advantages of the Sony Alpha NEX-7:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (24 vs 12.2MP), which boosts linear resolution by 40%.
- Better image quality: Scores markedly higher (8 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
- Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (1.2 bits more color depth).
- More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (1 EV of extra DR).
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (1080/60i vs 720/30p).
- Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2359k vs 1440k dots).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.73x vs 0.50x).
- 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 (921k vs 460k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (10 vs 5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
- More compact: Is smaller (120x67mm vs 126x75mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (430 versus 300) out of a single battery charge.
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (11 months) more recently.
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the NEX-7 is the clear winner of the contest (16 : 3 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 wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports 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 X100 and the Sony NEX-7 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Prime Lens Compact Camera and Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
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 X100 or the NEX-7 perform in practice. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.
This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular 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 X100||..||75/100||4/5||4/5||5/5||Sep 2010||1,199|
|Sony NEX-7||+ +||81/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Aug 2011||1,349|
|Canon G1 X||+||76/100||4/5||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2012||799|
|Fujifilm X100F||+||83/100||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Jan 2017||1,299|
|Fujifilm X30||..||76/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2014||599|
|Fujifilm X100T||+||81/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Sep 2014||1,299|
|Fujifilm X100S||+ +||81/100||4.5/5||4/5||5/5||Jan 2013||1,299|
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109||..||..||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Sep 2014||1,195|
|Nikon D3100||+ +||72/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2010||599|
|Nikon D3000||+||72/100||4/5||3.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2009||599|
|Panasonic LX100||+ +||85/100||5/5||4/5||5/5||Sep 2014||899|
|Sony A6400||+||85/100||4.5/5||..||4/5||Jan 2019||899|
|Sony A6000||+||80/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Feb 2014||599|
|Sony A3000||+||..||4/5||4.5/5||4/5||Aug 2013||329|
|Sony RX1||..||79/100||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||2,799|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The review scores listed above should be treated 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 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. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
- Canon 1200D vs Fujifilm X100
- Canon 400D vs Fujifilm X100
- Canon 6D Mark II vs Fujifilm X100
- Canon XC10 vs Fujifilm X100
- Fujifilm X100 vs Nikon Z50
- Fujifilm X100 vs Sony A7 II
- Fujifilm X100 vs Sony A7 III
- Nikon D5500 vs Sony NEX-7
- Olympus E-1 vs Sony NEX-7
- Olympus XZ-2 vs Sony NEX-7
- Panasonic GF2 vs Sony NEX-7
- Panasonic GH2 vs Sony NEX-7
Specifications: Fujifilm X100 vs Sony NEX-7
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 X100||Sony NEX-7|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||35mm f/2.0||Sony E mount lenses|
|Launch Date||September 2010||August 2011|
|Launch Price||USD 1,199||USD 1,349|
|Sensor Specs||Fujifilm X100||Sony NEX-7|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.6 x 15.8 mm||23.4 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||372.88 mm2||365.04 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||28.4 mm||28.1 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||12.2 Megapixels||24 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4288 x 2848 pixels||6000 x 4000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||5.53 μm||3.90 μm|
|Pixel Density||3.28 MP/cm2||6.57 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||720/30p Video||1080/60i Video|
|ISO Setting||200 - 6,400 ISO||100 - 16,000 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 12,800 ISO||no Enhancement|
|Image Processor||EXR Processor||BIONZ|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||73||81|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||22.9||24.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||12.4||13.4|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||1001||1016|
|Screen Specs||Fujifilm X100||Sony NEX-7|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||1440k dots||2359k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||2.8inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||460k dots||921k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Fujifilm X100||Sony NEX-7|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||no Peaking Feature||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/4000s||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||5 shutter flaps/s||10 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||MS or SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Fujifilm X100||Sony NEX-7|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||no MIC socket||External MIC port|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Fujifilm X100||Sony NEX-7|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||300 shots per charge||430 shots per charge|
126 x 75 x 54 mm
(5.0 x 3.0 x 2.1 in)
120 x 67 x 43 mm
(4.7 x 2.6 x 1.7 in)
|Camera Weight||445 g (15.7 oz)||400 g (14.1 oz)|
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