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Date: 24/06/2014 | By: Mathieu

Mirrorless Cameras for Professional Work | Where they prevail & where they fail

Canon EOS 7D, 1/8, f/ 4/1, ISO 1600

Mirrorless Cameras for Professional Work | Where they prevail & where they fail

While DSLRs remain the best-selling cameras and the main choice of professional photographers, general interest in mirrorless cameras is growing little by little. Many articles can be found online about photographers who have switched from their DSLR to a MILC system or are starting to use a mirrorless camera as a second body. As with any system, there are positive aspects but also limits that must be considered.

As you may know if you are following our blog, I stopped using DSLRs last year and primarily turned to the Micro Four Thirds system. It is a decision I have never regretted. It works for me but I have no qualms admitting that it might not work for others. There are many variations that can influence a person’s decision: the kind of photos you take, the level required by your clients and most importantly, the kind of photographer you are.

All the client wants is the result he asked for when he hired you. It’s up to the photographer to choose the best tool for the job.

If you are reading these lines, you might be interested in the “switch” theme as well, or at least be curious about it. If so, the following paragraphs might help you decided if it is worth the hassle of changing systems or not, and may also prompt you to ask yourself the following question: Are current mirrorless systems ready for the professional world of photography?

Prelude: Which brands and cameras can be considered for professional work

Before answering the question, I thought it would be interesting to briefly write about which mirrorless cameras and brands are suitable for professional work.

The best choices are from the Micro Four Thirds system, not only because there are two brands developing mirrorless cameras (Olympus and Panasonic) but also because the lenses and range of accessories are so vast and complete. The system also best represents the main advantages of a mirrorless system: compactness, discretion and portability.

E-M1, 1/5, f/ 4/1, ISO 800
E-M1, 1/5, f/ 4, ISO 800 (hand-held)
DMC-GX7, 1/160, f/ 2.8, ISO 3200
DMC-GX7, 1/160, f/ 2.8, ISO 3200

Fujifilm is rapidly becoming the most popular mirrorless brand, and the X series certainly attracts more photographers to the idea of switching than any other series out there. I like the system a lot despite its young age. It still lacks some important things like fast and constant aperture zoom lenses or a true TTL wireless flash system, but I believe that very soon the system will fill the gaps. It is the system that currently has the most potential in the professional world.

X-Pro1, 1/320, f/ 5.6, ISO 200 HDR merged from 3 shots
X-Pro1, 1/320, f/ 5.6, ISO 200
X100S, 1/60, f/ 28/10, ISO 6400
X100S, 1/60, f/ 2.8, ISO 6400

Then there is Sony, the outsider in my opinion. They design awesome cameras like the RX1, and have the technological prowess and economic possibility to make the likes of the Alpha FE system. However, it is too young and too recent to judge at the moment. I like the A7 and A7r but liking something is not enough. We need more lenses as everybody has been saying. Even though I haven’t tried it yet, the upcoming A7s might be the most interesting mirrorless camera to have ever been releaased.

ILCE-7, 1/1000, f/ 18/10, ISO 100
ILCE-7, 1/1000, f/ 1.8, ISO 100

Leica also has a place on the list with its legendary M system and there are also interesting “niche” cameras such as the Sigma DP series with its Foveon sensor.

1. Image quality is not your main concern

This sentence might sound surprising to some of you but when I switched to mirrorless, image quality was the last point I analysed. Of course it all depends on your business’ main genre of photography as well as many other aspects but to me, the answer is pretty simple.

If you seek ultimate image quality because this is the way you work or because this is what your clients need, then mirrorless cameras are not of your concern. Actually, you aren’t or shouldn’t be reading this article. A professional who wants ultimate image quality already owns a top-level DSLR or medium format camera.

You might point out that recent models such as the Sony A7r can rival the best DSLRs in terms of image quality and you are right. But the next step is to look at the system as a whole. The Sony FE system is new and still lacks some things to be considered complete. But if we talk strictly about image quality, the A7r is certainly one of the most appealing options.

If, on the other hand, you are wondering if mirrorless cameras can provide enough image quality for your personal needs, well, that is a different story. And my answer is yes, they can.

I can recommend them for weddings, events, portraits, reportage or performing arts to name a few.

E-M5, 1/1000, f/2 , ISO 200Voigtländer 25mm f/0.95 No processed version
E-M5, 1/1000, f/2 , ISO 200
E-M1, 1/4, f/ 4/1, ISO 800
E-M1, 1/4, f/ 4, ISO 800
E-M1, 1/100, f/ 2.8, ISO 3200
E-M1, 1/100, f/ 2.8, ISO 3200

But at the risk of sounding repetitive, only you, the photographer, can figure out whether the image quality is sufficient. I shoot mainly events both indoors and out, and the quality produced by the Micro Four Thirds sensor is more than enough for me and my clients. For this kind of work, there are other factors that prevail over overall image quality like catching the right moment at the right time. Because that is what matters in the end.

2. Look at the whole system, not at the sensor alone

Once you’ve picked one or two bodies of interest, you then have to look at what the system has to offer: lenses and accessories.

Will you find the same equivalent focal length you are used to shooting with on your DSLR ?

The Micro Four Thirds system is currently the best system regarding the variety of lenses and accessories. Fujifilm is increasing its X system and it should look very good by the end of the year. Sony has the technology and the quality but the Nex/Alpha system is still lacking a little as far as lenses go.

E-P5, 1s, f/ 8, ISO 200
E-P5, 1s, f/ 8, ISO 200 – Lumix 7-14mm

Note that when I talk about lenses, I talk about native lenses for the system only. Yes, you could use an adaptor and increase the choice for the Sony Alpha system for example, but you would lose some advantages of the mirrorless system.

The advantage of a mirrorless camera resides in its compactness. Adapting heavier and bulkier DSLR lenses simply doesn’t make sense to me (except on some rare occasions). If you will mainly be using adaptors, just stick with your DSLR.

E-M1, 1/80, f/ 2/1, ISO 3200
E-M1, 1/80, f/ 2, ISO 3200 – Zuiko 150mm f/2 – One of the only times I used a DSLR lens with my OM-D

What is lacking in the mirrorless system in general is a wider choice of very specific lenses. You won’t find tilt-shift lenses for example which might be a concern for architecture photography. Macro lenses are more limited in focal length choice in comparison to DSLRs. Fast super telephoto lenses are also non-existent. Olympus and Fujifilm are working on it so that could soon change.

There are also fewer interesting third-parties lenses than for DSLRs. Today Sigma represents a great alternative for both Nikon and Canon users while for the mirrorless systems there are only a few examples really worth mentioning (talking about AF lenses only). Finally, there aren’t different generations of professional lenses. This means that the second-hand market is more limited.

There is also the question of accessories and flash units. If you are a Canon or Nikon user you might be familiar with the excellent speedlight system both brands can offer especially regarding remote wireless capabilities. Fujifilm is lacking wireless capable flash units, though Olympus and Panasonic have more to offer. With Sony you can use the same flash system built for its DSLT cameras.

There is less concern about other accessories such as battery packs for example, and only a few models for each mirrorless brand have that option anyway.

3. Autofocus concerns

This has long been one of the primary concerns about mirrorless cameras. To me the reasoning is the same as the image quality paragraph.

DSLRs have a faster and more reliable AF system but mirrorless cameras are closing the gap. I have had no problem focusing in a very dark situation like a disco with my Olympus OM-D E-M1 or shooting sports with the Fujifilm X-T1.

E-M1, 1/100, f/ 28/10, ISO 3200
E-M1, 1/100, f/ 2.8, ISO 3200
X-T1, 1/30, f/ 22/1, ISO 200
X-T1, 1/30, f/ 22, ISO 200

If the autofocus needs to be perfect for the work you do, then DSLRs are still the way to go. Actually, it isn’t only related to autofocus but also to the buffer capabilities and lenses. DSLR and MILC cameras have very similar fps capabilities but the top DSLRs will endure more. Similarly, you won’t find a 500mm f/2.8 equivalent for any of the mirrorless systems yet.

The best way to understand autofocus on mirrorless cameras is to try it for yourself. Personally I manage to work with AF quite quickly and painlessly on my cameras. You can achieve great results even without the fastest AF in the world. It is a matter of learning to use the camera settings at their best, and judging whether the camera’s AF engine can satisfy your needs or not. If you want to know more, just read my article about testing the Fujifilm X-T1 autofocus capabilities for sports photography.

4. Professional support

When it comes to professional work, it is important to remember that the factors that can prompt you to choose one system or the other aren’t always related to the traditional aspects we often talk and read about on the Web. It isn’t just a question of image quality or megapixel count. The line between success and failure on a single assignment can be related to many other aspects as well.

There are photographers who won’t consider a given camera for work because it only has one memory card slot for example.

When it comes to work, details are often more important than the obvious factors such as image quality and autofocus. Support is also very important. Nikon and Canon are very well known for their professional services program (respectively CPS and NPS) that often includes assistance on important events.

When I worked at Cannes as a photographer’s assistant in 2009, the photographer I was working under handed her Nikon D200 over to Nikon support for a general cleaning and rubber grip replacement during the festival. In the meantime, she shot half of her portraits with a Nikon D700 courtesy of Nikon, for free and for as long as she wanted. A professional support program also means having your camera repaired very quickly and receiving a replacement body in the meantime so that you can continue to work.

E-M1, 1/100, f/ 28/10, ISO 800
E-M1, 1/100, f/ 2.8, ISO 800

Canon offers different levels with an annual membership fee and various services (the lowest is free). The Nikon program, on the other hand, is totally free. The requirements are different but for each you have to prove that you are a professional photographer. For instance, you can enter the Nikon NPS only if you own at least two professional DSLR bodies and several lenses.

With the top mirrorless brands today, customer support isn’t yet comparable to either Nikon or Canon. Olympus has its Global Pro Service program that started in 2003 with their Four Thirds system. They also launched a Service Plus program for the OM-D E-M1 but it isn’t available in all countries. Sony launched its pro service this year in Asia but there hasn’t been any news about extending it to other countries yet. As of today, Fujifilm doesn’t have a professional service.

I have read complaints by some users about a camera being away for even a month. Of course this varies a lot depending on the country, the brand and other factors. This can be a big limit for professionals who cannot afford to be without their cameras for that long.  This isn’t a topic that many blogs discuss but for professional work it is very important to mention. I understand that as long as sales and professionals who use these cameras don’t increase in number, it is difficult to build a program like this. At the same time, it is certainly something that these brands will need to consider in the future if they want more photographers to begin using mirrorless cameras for work.

Personally I have never had any big problems with customer support, nor have I needed to take advantage of it. I always carry a backup body when on a big assignment, even if I don’t use it. Because even with the best customer support, if your camera breaks in the middle of your shoot, a backup body is the only thing that can save you.

5. Discretion is the reason

X100S, 1/25, f/ 2/1, ISO 200
X100S, 1/25, f/ 2, ISO 200

The main advantage of a mirrorless system resides in its reduced size and weight. This is why I switched. It wasn’t really a question of saving my back (as it might be for others) but a question of working lighter, being more comfortable as a photographer and being more discreet. I like to be discreet; it is my character. I found that mirrorless cameras better represent the kind of work I like to do and my style.

And let’s get it out there, lighter gear is always welcome. During my five days in Dubai, I really enjoyed walking through the desert in the 40° heat with just my OM-D, Pen E-P5 and Cosyspeed bag (a total of two bodies, four lenses and a flash unit).

E-P5, 1/8000, f/ 71/10, ISO 200
E-P5, 1/8000, f/ 7.1, ISO 200

Discretion can also be found in a technical feature these cameras possess. Since these cameras lack a flipping mirror, they already have a quieter shutter sound. Moreover, the Lumix GX7 or GH4 for example have a completely silent shutter option. The camera literally doesn’t emit any sound at all when shooting. This is very helpful for performing arts shows like contemporary dance for example where there are usually many moments without music. I see many photographers putting a special cloak over their DSLR in order to reduce the noise. And if the quality of the GH4 doesn’t convince you, that of the upcoming A7s just might: full frame, up to 409600 ISO with a full electronic and silent shutter option. Let’s hope that the silent shutter doesn’t limit the ISO range like on the Lumix cameras.

Conclusion: don’t follow the trend, follow your instinct

Mirrorless cameras are becoming more and more popular these days, but the last and most important piece of advice I can give you is this: do not allow yourself to be influenced by a trend. Look at it, think about it and ask yourself this question: do I really need it?

X100S, 1/140, f/ 28/10, ISO 200
X100S, 1/140, f/ 2.8, ISO 200

Choosing a specific camera model over another must be a personal choice and not only the result of peer pressure and the influence you feel while reading enthusiast articles (including the ones you can find on this site). This point is even more important if you are choosing a tool for work and not just amateur purposes.

I smile when I read some articles saying that shooting with a mirrorless camera is easier because they have real time exposure preview on the viewfinder. They say it saves you lots of time when you adjust your photos in post-production on the computer.

Does this mean that people who shoot with DSLRs always end up with under or over-exposed photos? No. To me, it’s nonsense. My photo exposure accuracy didn’t change when I switched from my Nikon D700 to the OM-D. Yes, the EVF is advantageous in this regard but if you spend all your time adjusting the exposure of your photos in post, it means that you have to improve technically.

Mirrorless cameras don’t make things easier or harder. They don’t make your photos better. The photographer does by choosing the appropriate tool.

MILC cameras prevail in discretion, weight and volume. They are fast, reliable and there is more than one model designed with professionals in minds. They cannot meet the needs of every business not cover genres of photography that require something very specific from a professional point of view, but they are valid for many kinds of photography such as weddings, events, reportage and so on.

They are also meant for enthusiast photographers who actually represent the biggest share of this market. Whether this will change in the future is hard to predict. I don’t think DSLRs will die out any time soon but I believe that mirrorless cameras have the potential to create a second niche for professionals. And remember, that this isn’t a war against DSLRs or any other system. They can coexist. For the photographer, it only means more choice, which honestly, isn’t a bad thing.

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About the author: Mathieu Gasquet

Mathieu Gasquet is a professional photographer with French and Italian origins. Besides running his own video and photography studio 3Dit Lab, he is also the official photographer for the National Cinema Museum in Turin. You can follow him on Google+, Twitter or Facebook!

  • Jacques Cornell

    Well, we all have different needs, but from my point of view as a professional event, corporate and travel shooter, M4/3 is not only “on par”, it’s BETTER. I switched from FF DSLRs partly for the weight advantage, but also because my M4/3s do a LOT that my DSLRs didn’t. First, size & weight are not simply matters of mere convenience to be blithely written off. I shoot multi-day conferences where I’m carrying cameras with fast zooms and flashes on each shoulder, primes in pockets & pouches, plus I’m schlepping around off-camera flashes on stands, for 10-14 hours each day. With my big FF kit, my body used to be a wreck after two days. With M4/3, I’m much less fatigued, I’m happier, I have more fun, I’m not counting the hours until quitting time, and I have the energy to stay creative throughout. I might even add a third camera on a neck strap! In addition, my M4/3 cameras do a whole host of things my DSLRs didn’t. I can preview the exposure and white balance in the viewfinder before taking the shot. I can review the image just shot immediately without taking my eye from the viewfinder. I can shoot in total silence. I have a virtual horizon in the viewfinder for leveling architectural shots. I can trip the shutter from my iPhone. Face Detect AF locks on a speaker’s face instead of the microphone in front of her (yea!). I can focus manually with confidence, thanks to peaking and magnification. And much more. Image quality is as good as my 1Ds Mark II and more than adequate for my professional needs. In short, DSLRs no longer offer me any compelling reason to put up with their bulk, weight and cost.

  • stan_whitt

    Good point!

  • Jim Kahnweiler

    A very sensible article, Mathieu.

    I’m using an EM1 because the semi-pro equipment from Nikon failed for me. When I began as a pro, over 40 years ago, there was only Nikon—the other brands just were not making a quality product for news photographers. But, now the semi-pro lenses no longer deserve the Nikkor label. Edge sharpness issues, chromatic aberration that could not be corrected with software, auto focus failure. I had three copies of the new 18-140 and sent them all back. Bodies like the D7100 are just better than the lenses and I simply did not want to make the investment for full-on pro equipment, neither in size, weight or cost.

    I’m not so sure about the Fujifilm FE system. I had and an X-T1 for about 12 exposures; it felt sluggish compared to the Oly and the image quality seemed only marginally better. So, I returned it. I was on the vendor’s website today, thinking perhaps I should reconsider after reading all the glowing reports about the system. Used X-T1 bodies were being offered for about US$400 off list price. No fewer than 10 X-T1 bodies were for sale. Ten. I’m assuming these were returns from customers like me, who tried the camera and decided to use something else. There was only one used OM-D EM-1 for sale. Mirrorless technology keeps evolving and I will keep looking.

  • T N Args

    Great article. Assuming this article is written for professionals, regarding professional service, why not suggest in your article that any pro who is thinking of the change contact the manufacturer-of-interest’s headquarters in his/her country and ask them what level of support are they prepared to offer a professional going over to their system? This will [a] provide the right answer, and [b] make the company aware of this emerging possibility and think about their approach.

  • Mathieu

    Well actually there is the 200-500mm f/2.8 by Sigma :)

  • CGL

    Good article. FYI, you won’t find a 500mm f/2.8 on any DSLR either :-)

  • C. Biscuit

    Mathieu, very good article. I’m strictly an amateur, but I don’t think you can underestimate the value of a discreet, non threatening camera. I’m shooting a Panasonic GM1 and my walk-around lens is the venerable Panasonic 20mm/f1.7. With that combo I need never be without my camera and it disturbs subjects barely more than cell phones, if at all. Kids don’t notice it, and I usually find adults are happy to be photographed with it. And then I can put on the stunning Olympus 60mm/f2.8 macro and take some fantastic nature shots.

    As someone learning the craft through photographing daily life, it would be virtually impossible for me to advance my skills at the same rate were I using a dslr. My wife would all but forbid me bringing it to social occasions or on bike rides or to the grocery store. So not only does MILC systems give professionals new options, it gives us who lack professional experience a quantum leap in opportunity to practice the art of photography in private and public spaces, and for that alone these camera systems may create a generation of photographers who would have never been otherwise.

  • Mathieu

    Hi João, well technically the lenses you mentioned aren’t DSLR lenses :)
    But I get your point and you are right. M mount lenses and also older film lenses can be small and portable.
    To me adapting third party lenses is an option, actually a great option but I like to analyse the whole system. Also because if some people might be ok with using manual focus lenses, other might prefer to use AF lenses designed specifically for the camera.
    In that sentence I was particularly referring to people who are considering buying a mirrorless camera like the Sony a7 or a7r and then mount their DSLR lenses on it. I don’t see an advantage personally, unless you adapt small lenses such as a 50mm f/1.8.

  • João

    Great Article! One correction, “Adapting heavier and bulkier DSLR lenses simply doesn’t make sense to me (except on some rare occasions). If you will mainly be using adaptors, just stick with your DSLR.” your forgetting one of the greatest strengths in choosing the Sony line, i’ll name some compact, unique and cheap ones: Voigtlander 35mm f 1.2 II, Zeiss ZM line, Leica M line, Voigtlander 21mm f 1.8, Voigtlander 50mm f 1.5 new version, voigtlander 75mm f 1.8.
    I could go on, but i think it’s enough to make a point. I shoot for a living and I just traded my d800e because of the small size of my A7 and because it’s the only system where I can focus with peaking/magnify and focus on composition using B&W mode with RAW+JPG with lenses so unique like the ones mention above. Do you you know any other system where I can shoot 1.2 with this size and weight and features?
    I bought my A7 for 1070€, I have the close adapter from voigtlander (250€). the voigtlander’s bought it on amazon warehousedeals for less than 700€, the Zeiss ZM line cost you around 600€ with few exceptions and the Leica’s cost you more but you get what you pay for and you can focus closer with the voigtlander adapter.
    I don’t like AF, but if I did I would use my Zeiss FE primes/zooms and the Sigma 85 f 1.4 while I wait for the +5 lenses sony and zeiss will launch until the end of this year.

    Again great article.



  • Bob

    You lost me at dslr have faster AF than mirrorless. Without more qualification, that statement is simply false. For S-AF, today’s best mirrorless cameras are both faster and more accurate. Significantly more accurate.

    Yes, if using C-AF on moving subjects is important to what you shoot, pro-life dslr are superior, but one shouldn’t count out Panasonic’ GH4, which is better than MANY a mid-range DSLR.

  • Mathieu

    Well I didn’t really specify how old are the pros :) The article can be useful to both new and old dogs.

  • matador88

    maybe its not only about pros doing their job for X years. what about newcomers? id like to read this article pointed to new wolfs in the field not old dogs doing their work with routine…

  • Mathieu

    Thanks Allan. Unfortunately I haven’t tested the Dp series enough to talk more about it and I prefer to stick with what I use. I agree with your reasoning and this is why I wrote that paragraph about image quality. Photographers that seek ultimate IQ for their work (which often results in printing) already know what they need to use. That can be medium format or a Nikon D800 or a Sigma Dp3 😉

  • Mathieu

    Hi Daniel, the lens selection is the same for both Olympus and Panasonic cameras. In the article I refer more to the MFT system. Then I use an E-M1 so I certainly tend to mention it more. I use my GH3 especially for video. As for the GH4, I haven’t test it enough yet but a unit arrives today… 😉

  • Mathieu

    Thanks Otto, you last sentence can sum up my article very well 😉

  • Mathieu

    Hi Andrea. To me it isn’t a valid point against mirrorless cameras. As you said I wanted to be objective when analysing from a general professional point of view and not mine only. I like to simplify when I review cameras or when I write advices and I like to bring concrete thoughts on the table. As I wrote many times, I am a MFT shooter and shoot all my paid assignments with the OM-D E-M1 because what the camera gives me is more than what I “lost” with the old system. I wouldn’t go back to DSLR but I can understand that those alternative systems might not be enough for other people. I don’t want to convince people to switch, I want to suggest them the reason why it could be of benefit for them but also what are the limits. To me it is a way to be honest with my readers. Not just saying “mirrorless cameras are the best” but also “they are great but you might miss this or that“. Then it’s up to the photographer to choose. 😉

  • A. Costa

    Mathieu, this is a nice article, but… I’ve played a game: I’ve pretended I’ve never owned or shooted an M4/3 camera, only traditional DSLR – and in all honesty, reading your article I just could conclude that there is nothing interesting for me in the mirrorless world. The only positive thing you can really say on mirroless is that they are more portable and discreet. In every other aspects, they are not on par with dsrl. “But they are catching up” – ok, but I need a camera for my work right NOW, not somewhere in the future, and if I’m shooting to earn a living, I can easily live up with an heavier camera and bulkier lens, as first film, then digital, SLR shooters have done all this years. I perfectly understand that you tried to be objective, but, IMHO, you have made a very valid point – AGAINST mirrorless cameras…
    BTW your blog is very interesting to read – keep up with the good work!

  • Heather

    I agree that if you shoot video, MFT (Lumix specifically) or Sony are the way to go.

  • Otto Rascon

    Great article Mathieu. I remember making a list of pros and con’s when considering a mirrorless system. I had used Nikon cameras for over 10 years and loved the IQ from the full from bodies. But I was not liking the size of the lenses and the D3 body. As a wedding photographer these lenses get heavy quickly. I now shoot with an OMD EM1 and love the small form factor of both bodies and lenses. The IQ is awesome and the lenses, I’m finding, are fantastic. There is no perfect system, but one that works for you. Thanks.

  • Allan

    A really great article and if I hadn’t just bought a Sigma Dp3 Merrill, then I would say that it was 5 star. I would disagree that the sensor does not count. If its print output that you want then the sensor really does make a difference. Any technically good photographer will do a competent job with the tools he has. The brilliant one always has good gear, that’s why I went for the highest sensor at a reasonable price – and that’s the sigma Foveon. Its only for a very few photographers as but the print results speak for themselves.

  • Daniel Cox

    Nice article however I find it interesting that once again Panasonic gets little mention. Mathew does stet that the GH4 has the fastest AF in a different blog post. I’ve tested many of the cameras he speaks of and The GH4 is without a doubt the best Predictive AF of all the mirrorless cameras to date. Panasonic have a huge arsenal of lenses compared to Sony or Fuji and when you account for the ability to use Olympus lenses the Micro Four Thirds options are even more impressive. For me the most important elements of a professional system must include lens selection, Predictive AF capabilities and low light shooting qualities. The GH4 has them all. Take a look at the Predictive AF test I recently shot with the GH4.

  • william

    I chose M43 because it was a better overall system.

    fast, accurate AF, great selection of lenses, size/weight of lenses and ergonomics. I do enjoy using the Fujifilm system but the video isn’t up there for what I want to do.

  • Mathieu

    Thanks David. Focusing is definitely better on the X-E2 or X-T1. As for the flash systems, I hope to see something interesting at Photokina 😉

  • Stuart Meador

    For years the electronics people looked for a way to insert a volt meter or amp meter into the electrical circuit without changing the resultant reading just from the impact of the voltmeter itself.. They finally achieved that result with zero – effect meters…..
    For years photographers have been trying to lower the impact of having the camera be an emotional / visual impairment on the situation of photographing people and things. Every decade since the appearance of photography the cameras have evolved to a smaller profile and the impact on the subject has been lowered. I believe the subject reacts less to a Fuji X or an Olympus Pen / M1 than to last generation’s Canon 5 or Nikon D.
    This results in a less self-conscious pose; a more honest reaction of the subject to their environment. We had this debate in each period as cameras evolved smaller and technology evolved higher. i.e. (Graflex reflex 4×5 vs Graphic Crown 4×5) – (Hassleblad vs. Bronica vs. Rolleiflex). Each photographer has their own preference but the majority went for the smaller, more versatile camera in each era. My limit is when the camera gets so small I can’t push the tiny buttons with my big fingers.

  • David

    I shot a several day event recently where I felt I made the switch to Fuji just a little too soon. It left me rather torn. I would have appreciated the faster focusing and flash systems of my Nikon’s many times, but I also love the size, weight, controls, image quality, and silent shutter(x100s) from my Fuji’s. I don’t regret the switch, but I definitely had to work harder for the pictures I wanted. I am sure when I upgrade from my X-E1 to XT-1 or newer I will never look back though. For me, it’s all about the controls, I love that I can change anything I desire, without taking the camera away from my eye. With my Nikon’s, I just found I spent way too much time staring at the back of the camera. Great article.

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