The Sony A6000 and the Fuji XT10 are remarkably different cameras, despite the fact that they are similarly-priced mirrorless cameras that appeal to the same market of customers. So it can be difficult to choose between the two.
In general, I love the resolution and features of the a6000, BUT the controls, autofocus, and usability of the Fuji XT10 are so good that it has won me over to be my favorite of the two.
I love the XT10. When you're only looking at specs, it can be tempting to overlook a camera like this, but there is something incredible about this camera that only comes from actually shooting it. That's exactly why I chose the Fuji XT10 to be my top choice for best mirrorless camera under $1,000.
- Brighter EVF with far more information capable of being displayed on the viewfinder.
- Solid, bug-free operation that is dependable and starts up quickly
- No anti-aliasing filter can theoretically produce sharper images
- External audio jack for recording audio
- Better low light performance due to the the larger photosites (each pixel has more space on the sensor, so it can more easily capture light)
- Controls, controls, controls! It's difficult to see the value of having so many buttons and dials all over the camera until you actually have a Fuji XT10 in your hand, but it makes a massive difference in the speed of operation and how hassle-free it is to grab the camera and take a few quick shots
- Snappier autofocus. This one is tough to argue. The autofocus on the Sony A6000 is just plain bad, but the Fuji XT10 actually has pretty decent autofocus. That makes for a huge difference in the sharpness of your photos. This alone is a major reason to choose the Fuji XT10.
- Better looks. If you care about the way your camera looks, the Fuji wins hands down with its gorgeous retro design. The Sony A6000 is actually a little ugly…
On paper, the Sony A6000 crushes the Fuji in a lot of key areas (resolution being a big one); however, in person it can be a bit underwhelming. The Sony packs incredible specs into a tiny, inexpensive camera, but the bugginess, autofocus, and menu system make the camera less fun to shoot.
- Higher resolution. The Sony A6000 has a 24 megapixel sensor, compared to only 16 on the Fuji XT10. That makes cropping and printing huge prints nice, but it also means more noise in high ISO photos.
- Light weight camera design (200 grams lighter, which is about the weight of 2 small apples)
- Larger image buffer. The Sony A6000 has a buffer of around 20 shots, whereas the buffer on the Fuji is only about 8 or 9.
- Better connectivity. The A6000 has NFC, so if you have a phone that has NFC, you can use it to pair the phone with the camera for connected shooting more easily.
- USB charging. It's really handy to be able to charge the battery right in the camera as long as you have a separate wall charger as well.
- PRICE! The Fuji XT10 generally costs about $200 more, but you can check the price of the Fuji XT10 on Amazon here, and the Sony A6000 on Amazon here to see what the current price difference is. (links open in separate pages)
Similarities of the Sony A6000 vs Fuji XT10
The A6000 and the XT10 are definitely cousins. They seem to have the same mirrorless blood pumping through their veins, but they have very different personalities and quirks.
The Sony A6000 is a bit of an older camera design now, but it was one of the first popular mirrorless cameras in this category to include phase detection auto focus on the sensor. Phase detection autofocus allows the camera to know which way to push the lens to achieve focus, whereas contrast detection autofocus must hunt for the focus back and forth until it's sharp. The Fuji XT10 also has phase detection autofocus, but since it is a newer implementation in the camera design, it does a much better job of autofocus.
Neither camera is weather sealed, which makes shooting in the rain or snow a riskier endeavor, but frankly I've ruined many supposedly “weather sealed” cameras by having them out in the weather. I'd use a cheap camera rain cover whether the camera is sealed or not.
Also, both cameras have a tiltable LCD screens, which is handy for shooting from a very low or very high perspective; however, neither camera's LCD is fully articulating. While some photographers prefer only a tiltable LCD screen, I like the versatility of a fully articulating LCD.
Both cameras also do well with connectivity. For several months, the Fuji camera app gave me significant issues in connecting to my iPhone, but that issue seems to be fixed now. Having wifi in both cameras is a big benefit.
Where and WHEN to Buy
Timing the purchase of a camera can be a bit tough. If you buy a camera a month before the newer version is released, you probably paid too much and you could have got the newer technology. Right now, the A6000 is due for a replacement in the next few months. If you can, I think it's probably smart to hold off until the newer version comes out. You can then choose to either buy the newer version or to get the A6000 at a deep discount.
The Fuji XT10 is still a pretty new release. I think it's a perfect time to buy if you're in the market. Check the current price of the Fuji XT10 on Amazon.
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