2014 Mid-range Mirrorless Roundup

Two things before I get to my response; firstly I am not sure of for what purpose you will be using the camera predominantly, and secondly I am not sure what you meant by mentioning that Sony may have discontinued it’s4/3 line up.

I am by no means a professional, but having been interested in both of these cameras I have learned a little.

You mentioned video, and yes, from what I have read, it seems Fuji is not such a video provider but it is great with still shots. The EM5 has 5-axis in body stabilization (IBIS) and is better equipped for video than the XE2, however, it isn’t perfect, and would recommend you check out these cameras reviews at stevehuffphoto.com as he reviews both and has a separate review of the 12-50 lens kit of which you were questioning.

The Fuji X-Trans sensor is an oddity, in that it differs from Bayer type sensors that can cost slight IQ (image quality) as the Bayer requires a low-bypass filter (or often does). However, as the sensor is odd in that it is proprietary, RAW processing with some software suites can be potentially harder with updates becoming available later on. That said, I hadn’t heard until this post that landscape shooting was inadvisable for this system…. Interesting, will have to look into that. Thw X-Trans is supposed to offer higher sound to noise, and as it is larger than the 4/3 sensor, higher ISO should be a given. This goes back to the background of your decision – if you want to shoot wide angle shots the 4/3 system has a crop factor of 2, unlike the X-Trans which shot per shot provides a wider angle which is good or bad depending on your preferences and purpose.

Do you wish to shoot in inclement weather, on the beach, desert? If so, consider the EM5 as it is weather sealed, but beware the lens you get for it, for most micro four thirds lenses are weather sealed. The 12-50 is, though it is “slow” in that it’s max aperture is f:3.5 and it has been said that it gets softer at wider f stops, you pointed out it is at higher focal lengths too- didn’t know that, good to know as I will probably get an EM5 this year. The 12-40 is “brighter” in that it opens to f:2.8, and has very good reviews. The killer is the price, the 12-50 costs about $200 (US) used on amazon (still cheaper to buy with body as opposed to post purchase), but the 12-40 is nearly a thousand US dollars. There are at least two Olympus 4/3 lenses (not micro 4/3) that are weather sealed, and are brighter than the kit 12-50,however there is a catch in that it seems the 4/3 lenses focus slowly on the micro four thirds system, (if you go this route the 14-54 f:2.8-3.5 II AF is the best I have found, and can be purchased additionally with an adapter for less than $650 US , though make sure you get the Oly MMF-3 4/3 to micro 4/3 as it will maintain weather sealing between lens and camera (not all adapters do this). The Fuji lenses seem to be good pieces of glass, especially the 35 f/1.4,but again can’t provide any recommendations as I don’t know your background.

Lastly, if you care about where your camera is made, likely the Fuji is made in Japan, and the Olympus probably in China.

I like both of these systems, but as I have already invested in the m4/3 system, I have to lean that direction. The lenses available for the m4/3 system trump most if not all other systems, there are some Voigtlander primes with max apertures of f/. 95! Of course this is a good thing to create creamy bokeh with a smaller sensor, but the options are good for the m4/3, and IBIS means adding old 35mm lenses will still be sharp at longer focal lengths.

Hope this helps.

Source Article from http://www.dpreview.com/articles/4555856197/2014-mid-range-mirrorless-roundup