Fujifilm XQ1 vs Pentax MX-1
The Fujifilm XQ1 and the Pentax MX-1 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in October 2013 and January 2013. Both the XQ1 and the MX-1 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 2/3 (XQ1) and a 1/1.7-inch (MX-1) sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 12 megapixels.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Fujifilm XQ1 and the Pentax MX-1? 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.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Fujifilm XQ1 and the Pentax MX-1 is provided 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 size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The XQ1 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the MX-1 is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Pentax MX-1 is notably larger (26 percent) than the Fujifilm XQ1. Moreover, the MX-1 is substantially heavier (90 percent) than the XQ1. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the XQ1 nor the MX-1 are weather-sealed.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.
|1.||Fujifilm XQ1||100 mm||59 mm||33 mm||206 g||240||n||Oct 2013||499|
|2.||Pentax MX-1||122 mm||61 mm||51 mm||391 g||290||n||Jan 2013||499|
|3.||Canon SX60||128 mm||93 mm||114 mm||650 g||340||n||Sep 2014||549|
|4.||Canon G16||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||n||Aug 2013||549|
|5.||Canon S120||100 mm||59 mm||29 mm||217 g||230||n||Aug 2013||449|
|6.||Canon G15||107 mm||76 mm||40 mm||352 g||350||n||Sep 2012||499|
|7.||Fujifilm XQ2||100 mm||59 mm||33 mm||206 g||240||n||Jan 2015||399|
|8.||Fujifilm X30||119 mm||72 mm||60 mm||423 g||470||n||Aug 2014||599|
|9.||Fujifilm X20||117 mm||70 mm||57 mm||353 g||270||n||Jan 2013||599|
|10.||Fujifilm X10||117 mm||70 mm||57 mm||350 g||270||n||Sep 2011||599|
|11.||Nikon P7800||119 mm||78 mm||50 mm||399 g||350||n||Sep 2013||549|
|12.||Olympus XZ-2||113 mm||65 mm||48 mm||346 g||340||n||Sep 2012||599|
|13.||Panasonic LF1||103 mm||62 mm||28 mm||192 g||250||n||Apr 2013||499|
|14.||Panasonic FZ200||125 mm||87 mm||110 mm||588 g||540||n||Jul 2012||599|
|15.||Panasonic LX7||111 mm||68 mm||46 mm||298 g||330||n||Jul 2012||499|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The two cameras under review were launched at the same price and fall into the same 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.
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 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.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Fujifilm XQ1 features a 2/3 sensor and the Pentax MX-1 a 1/1.7-inch sensor. The sensor area in the MX-1 is 26 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 3.9 and 4.5. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
Even though the XQ1 has a larger sensor, both cameras offer the same resolution of 12 megapixels. This implies that the XQ1 has a lower pixel density and larger individual pixels (with a pixel pitch of 2.20μm versus 1.89μm for the MX-1), which gives it a potential advantage in terms of light gathering capacity. In addition, the XQ1 is a somewhat more recent model (by 9 months) than the MX-1, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the XQ1 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The XQ1 has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.
The Fujifilm XQ1 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800. The Pentax MX-1 offers exactly the same ISO settings.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.
| DXO |
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 XQ1 provides a higher frame rate than the MX-1. It can shoot video footage at 1080/60p, while the Pentax is limited to 1080/30p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The XQ1 and the MX-1 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Fujifilm XQ1 and Pentax MX-1 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
Both the XQ1 and the MX-1 have zoom lenses built in. The XQ1 has a 25-100mm f/1.8-4.9 optic and the MX-1 offers a 28-112mm f/1.8-2.5 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Fujifilm provides a wider angle of view at the short end than the Pentax, but less tele-photo reach at the long end. Both cameras offer the same maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the XQ1 and the MX-1 write their files to SDXC cards. The XQ1 supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the MX-1 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD 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 XQ1 and Pentax MX-1 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
It is notable that the XQ1 offers wifi support, while the MX-1 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Both the XQ1 and the MX-1 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The XQ1 was replaced by the Fujifilm XQ2, while the MX-1 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 Pentax websites.
So how do things add up? Is there a clear favorite between the Fujifilm XQ1 and the Pentax MX-1? Which camera is better? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Advantages of the Fujifilm XQ1:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Better image quality: Features a larger and more technologically advanced imaging sensor.
- Richer colors: The sensor size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger sensor captures a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger sensor produces good images even in poorly lit environments.
- Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p versus 1080/30p).
- Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (12 vs 1 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- More compact: Is smaller (100x59mm vs 122x61mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter (by 185g or 47 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
- More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 9 months after the MX-1).
Reasons to prefer the Pentax MX-1:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (290 versus 240) out of a single battery charge.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in January 2013).
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the XQ1 is the clear winner of the match-up (14 : 6 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision 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 XQ1 and the Pentax MX-1 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera listing 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 says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the XQ1 and the MX-1 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 where reviews by experts come in. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). 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.
|1.||Fujifilm XQ1||..||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||499|
|2.||Pentax MX-1||3/5||..||74/100||4/5||4/5||Jan 2013||499|
|3.||Canon SX60||3/5||+ +||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||549|
|4.||Canon G16||4/5||+||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||549|
|5.||Canon S120||..||+ +||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||449|
|6.||Canon G15||4/5||+||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||499|
|7.||Fujifilm XQ2||..||..||..||4/5||4/5||Jan 2015||399|
|8.||Fujifilm X30||4/5||..||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2014||599|
|9.||Fujifilm X20||4/5||+ +||77/100||4.5/5||5/5||Jan 2013||599|
|10.||Fujifilm X10||..||..||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2011||599|
|11.||Nikon P7800||3/5||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2013||549|
|12.||Olympus XZ-2||4/5||+||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||599|
|13.||Panasonic LF1||3/5||+||..||4/5||4.5/5||Apr 2013||499|
|14.||Panasonic FZ200||3/5||+ +||80/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2012||599|
|15.||Panasonic LX7||3/5||+ +||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Jul 2012||499|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
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. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
Specifications: Fujifilm XQ1 vs Pentax MX-1
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 XQ1||Pentax MX-1|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||25-100mm f/1.8-4.9||28-112mm f/1.8-2.5|
|Launch Date||October 2013||January 2013|
|Launch Price||USD 499||USD 499|
|Sensor Specs||Fujifilm XQ1||Pentax MX-1|
|Sensor Format||Two Thirds Sensor||1/1.7" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||8.8 x 6.6 mm||7.6 x 5.7 mm|
|Sensor Area||58.08 mm2||43.32 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||11 mm||9.5 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||12 Megapixels||12 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4000 x 3000 pixels||4000 x 3000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||2.20 μm||1.89 μm|
|Pixel Density||20.66 MP/cm2||27.70 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 12,800 ISO||100 - 12,800 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||49|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||20.4|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||11.3|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||208|
|Screen Specs||Fujifilm XQ1||Pentax MX-1|
|Viewfinder Type||no viewfinder||no viewfinder|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||920k dots||920k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Fujifilm XQ1||Pentax MX-1|
|Focus System||On-Sensor Phase-detect||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||no Peaking Feature|
|Continuous Shooting||12 shutter flaps/s||1 shutter flaps/s|
|Image Stabilization||Lens-based stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|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||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Fujifilm XQ1||Pentax MX-1|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||no Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Fujifilm XQ1||Pentax MX-1|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||240 shots per charge||290 shots per charge|
100 x 59 x 33 mm
(3.9 x 2.3 x 1.3 in)
122 x 61 x 51 mm
(4.8 x 2.4 x 2.0 in)
|Camera Weight||206 g (7.3 oz)||391 g (13.8 oz)|
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