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Sony RX100 versus Fujifilm X30

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 and the Fujifilm X30 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in June 2012 and August 2014. Both the RX100 and the X30 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on an one-inch (RX100) and a 2/3 (X30) sensor. The Sony has a resolution of 20 megapixel, whereas the Fujifilm provides 12 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: Sony RX100 vs Fujifilm X30

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Sony RX100 and the Fujifilm X30 is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are presented. All width, height and depth measures 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 – the RX100 – represents 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).

Compare Sony RX100 vs Fujifilm X30
RX100 versus X30 top view
RX100 and X30 rear side

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Fujifilm X30 is considerably larger (45 percent) than the Sony RX100. Moreover, the X30 is substantially heavier (76 percent) than the RX100. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the RX100 nor the X30 are weather-sealed.

Concerning battery life, the RX100 gets 330 shots out of its NP-BX1 battery, while the X30 can take 470 images on a single charge of its NP-95 power pack.

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 Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(y/n)
Camera
Launch
(year)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(amazon)
Used
Price
(ebay)
Sony RX100 (⇒ rgt) 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.4 in 8.5 oz 330 no 2012 649discont. check
Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft) 4.7 in 2.8 in 2.4 in 14.9 oz 470 no 2014 599 latest check
Canon G7 X (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.1 in 2.4 in 1.6 in 10.7 oz 210 no 2014 699discont. check
Canon T5i (⇒ lft | rgt) 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.5 oz 440 no 2013 649discont. check
Canon SL1 (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.6 in 3.6 in 2.7 in 14.4 oz 380 no 2013 549discont. check
Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.3 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.6 oz 360 no 2013 549 latest check
Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt) 5.0 in 2.9 in 2.0 in 15.5 oz 330 no 2014 1,299discont. check
Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt) 5.0 in 2.9 in 2.1 in 15.7 oz 330 no 2013 1,299discont. check
Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.6 in 2.8 in 2.2 in 12.5 oz 270 no 2013 599discont. check
Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.5 in 2.6 in 2.2 in 13.9 oz 300 no 2014 899 latest check
Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.6 in 10.5 oz 280 no 2015 999discont. check
Sony RX100 III (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.6 in 10.2 oz 320 no 2014 799discont. check
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.4 in 10.0 oz 400 no 2014 549 latest check
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.9 oz 350 no 2013 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.4 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.7 oz 330 no 2012 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.4 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.5 oz 460 no 2011 699discont. check
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) 4.3 in 2.4 in 1.3 in 7.9 oz 400 no 2011 599discont. check

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 X30 was somewhat cheaper (by 8 percent) than the RX100 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: Sony RX100 vs Fujifilm X30

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants 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. 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 tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Sony RX100 features an one-inch sensor and the Fujifilm X30 a 2/3 sensor. The sensor area in the X30 is 50 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.7 and 3.9. The sensor in the RX100 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the X30 offers a 4:3 aspect.

Sony RX100 and Fujifilm X30 sensor measures

With 20MP, the RX100 offers a higher resolution than the X30 (12MP), but the RX100 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 2.41μm versus 2.20μm for the X30) due to its larger sensor. However, the X30 is a somewhat more recent model (by 2 years and 2 months) than the RX100, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the X30 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

RX100 versus X30 MP

For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. 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 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 Sensor
Class
Resolution
(Megapixel)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Sony RX100 (⇒ rgt) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 1080/60p 22.6 12.4 390 66
Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft) 2/3 12.0 4000 3000 1080/60p - - - -
Canon G7 X (⇒ lft | rgt) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 1080/60p 23.0 12.7 556 71
Canon T5i (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 17.9 5184 3456 1080/30p 21.7 11.2 681 61
Canon SL1 (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 17.9 5184 3456 1080/30p 21.8 11.3 843 63
Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt) 1/1.7 12.0 4000 3000 1080/60p 21.0 11.7 230 54
Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4896 3264 1080/60p - - - -
Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4896 3264 1080/60p - - - -
Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt) 2/3 12.0 4000 3000 1080/60p - - - -
Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt) Four Thirds 12.7 4112 3088 4K/30p 22.3 12.5 553 67
Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 4K/30p 22.8 12.6 591 70
Sony RX100 III (⇒ lft | rgt) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 1080/60p 22.4 12.3 495 67
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 24.0 6000 4000 1080/60p 23.8 12.7 1347 80
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 1080/60p 22.5 12.4 483 67
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4912 3264 1080/60i 23.7 13.1 910 78
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4912 3264 1080/60i 23.6 12.7 1079 77
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4912 3264 720/30p 22.7 12.2 1083 73

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, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).

Feature comparison: Sony RX100 vs Fujifilm X30

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the X30 has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the RX100 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Sony RX100 and Fujifilm X30 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras. The full specs-sheets can be found in the camera manual or, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.

Core Features
Camera Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(Y/n)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(Y/n)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec))
Build-in
Flash
(GN)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Sony RX100 (⇒ rgt) no no 3.0 1229 fixed no 2000 10.0 YES YES
Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft) 2360 no 3.0 920 tilting no 4000 12.0 7 YES
Canon G7 X (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 1040 tilting YES 2000 6.5 7 YES
Canon T5i (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 3.0 1040 swivel YES 4000 5.0 13 no
Canon SL1 (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 3.0 1040 fixed YES 4000 4.9 9.4 no
Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 3.0 922 fixed no 4000 2.2 7 YES
Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt) 2360 no 3.0 1040 fixed no 4000 6.0 9 no
Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt) 2360 no 2.8 460 fixed no 4000 6.0 9 no
Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 2.8 460 fixed no 4000 12.0 7 YES
Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt) 2764 no 3.0 921 fixed no 4000 11.0 no YES
Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt) 2359 no 3.0 1228 tilting no 2000 16.0 10.2 YES
Sony RX100 III (⇒ lft | rgt) 1440 no 3.0 1229 tilting no 2000 10.0 YES YES
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 922 tilting YES 4000 6.0 4 no
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 1229 tilting no 2000 10.0 15 YES
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 920 tilting YES 4000 10.0 no no
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 920 tilting YES 4000 10.0 no no
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 920 tilting no 4000 5.5 no no

Both the RX100 and the X30 have zoom lenses build in. The RX100 has a 28-100mm f/1.8-4.9 optic and the X30 offers a 28-112mm f/2.0-2.8 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Sony and Fujifilm provide the same view at the wide-angle end, but the Fujifilm has more tele-photo reach at the long end. The RX100 offers the faster maximum aperture.

The X30 is a current model that online retailers, such as amazon, will have in stock. In contrast, the RX100 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the RX100 was succeeded by the Sony RX100 II.

Review summary: Sony RX100 vs Fujifilm X30

So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Sony RX100 and the Fujifilm X30? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.


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Reasons to prefer the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (20 vs 12MP) with a 32% higher linear resolution.
  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better low-light imaging: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for better high-ISO images.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1229k vs 920k dots).
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/1.8 vs f/2.0).
  • More compact: Is smaller (102x58mm vs 119x72mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 183g or 43 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in June 2012).

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Advantages of the Fujifilm X30:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (12 vs 10 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (470 versus 330) out of a single battery charge.
  • More modern: Reflects 2 years and 2 months of technical progress since the RX100 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the match-up finishes in a tie (8 points each). 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.

RX100 08:08 X30

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the RX100 and the X30 in practical situations. 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 hands-on reviews by experts are important. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). The full reviews are available by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review scores
Camera cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(year)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(amazon)
Used
Price
(ebay)
Sony RX100 (⇒ rgt) HiRec 78/100 Silver 4/5 5/5 5/5 2012 649discont. check
Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft) - 76/100 4.5/5 4/5 4.5/5 2014 599 latest check
Canon G7 X (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 77/100 Silver 4.5/5 3.5/5 4.5/5 2014 699discont. check
Canon T5i (⇒ lft | rgt) - 76/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 4.5/5 2013 649discont. check
Canon SL1 (⇒ lft | rgt) Rec 78/100 Gold 4/5 4/5 4/5 2013 549discont. check
Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt) Rec - 4.5/5 4.5/5 4.5/5 2013 549 latest check
Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt) Rec 81/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 5/5 2014 1,299discont. check
Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 81/100 Gold 4.5/5 4/5 5/5 2013 1,299discont. check
Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 77/100 Silver 4.5/5 - 5/5 2013 599discont. check
Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 85/100 Gold 5/5 4/5 5/5 2014 899 latest check
Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 85/100 Gold 4/5 4.5/5 4.5/5 2015 999discont. check
Sony RX100 III (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 82/100 Gold 4.5/5 4.5/5 5/5 2014 799discont. check
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) Rec - 4.5/5 4.5/5 5/5 2014 549 latest check
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 79/100 Silver 4.5/5 5/5 4.5/5 2013 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) - - 4.5/5 - 4.5/5 2012 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 79/100 Gold 4.5/5 5/5 4.5/5 2011 699discont. check
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 74/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 4/5 2011 599discont. check

The above review scores should be interpreted 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 use the search menu below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting. If you do not see the camera that you are looking for, please send me an email, and I will try to add information on that model to the database.

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