A Travel & Backpacking Perspective

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Fujifilm makes some great interchangeable lens cameras for travelers and backpackers.  There are quite a few of these mirrorless cameras in the lineup, and it makes choosing the right one difficult.  Here’s a basic Fujifilm camera comparison from a travel perspective.

Don’t know much about Fujifilm X cameras?  You may also want to read these posts:

Fujifilm camera comparison table

  X-H1 X-T3 X-Pro3 X-T30 X-T100 X-E3
Who it’s for Pros who shoot a lot of video Pros & serious photographers Pro & serious street photographers Hobbyists needing an all-around camera Secondary body for pros; entry-level hobbyists Serious hobbyists; pros looking for small secondary body
Body-only price (Oct 2019) $1,179 $1,299 $1,799 $799 $399 $599
Weather sealing? Yes Yes Yes No No No
APS-C Sensor 24.3MP X-Trans CMOS III 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS IV 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS IV 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS IV 24.2 CMOS Bayer 24.3MP X-Trans CMOS III
Native ISO range 200 to 12800 160 to 12800 160 to 12800 160 to 12800 200 to 12800 200 to 12800
In-camera stabilization? 5-axis No No No No No
Movie capability Cinema 4K @ 24fps, UHD 4K @ 29.97fps 4K @ 59.94fps, HD @ 120fps 4K @ 29.97fps, HD @ 120fps 4K @ 29.97fps, HD @ 120fps 4K @ 15fps, HD @ 59.94fps 4K @ 29.97fps, HD @ 59.94 fps
Burst shooting 14 frames per second 20 frames per second 20 frames per second 14 frames per second 6 frames per second 14 frames per second
Includes fill flash Yes, external shoe-mount Yes, external shoe-mount No Yes, built-in Yes, built-in Yes, external shoe-mount
Size 5.5″x3.8″x3.4″ (includes extended fixed grip) 5.2″x3.6″x2.3″ 5.5″x3.3″x1.8″ 4.7″x3.3″x1.8″ 4.8″x3.3″x1.9″ 4.8″x2.9″x1.7″
Weight (with battery, no lens) 1.5 pounds 1.19 pounds 1.1 pounds 0.84 pounds 0.9 pounds 0.74 pounds

X-H1

The X-H1 is Fujifilm’s high-end APS-C camera, released in 2018.

x-h1 rear

Who the X-H1 is for

The 24.3MP X-H1 is ideal for travelers who need the best in portable video capabilities. 

The X-T3 may be a better option for you if you don’t need professional video capabilities.

Highlights of the X-H1

  • Robust body made of magnesium alloy.  Moisture & dust resistant with operating temperatures down to -10C.
  • Touchscreen, fully-articulating 3″ LCD.
  • X Processor Pro and X-Trans CMOS III Sensor without moiré filter.
  • Five-axis in-body stabilization (a first for Fujifilm X).
  • Records Cinema 4K at 24fps and Ultra HD 4K at 29.97fps, also Full HD at 120fps.
  • Movie recording at a bitrate of 200Mbps, also in F-Log and high dynamic range ETERNA simulation.
x-h1 top

Disadvantages of the X-H1 for travel

  • This is the largest & heaviest camera in the X lineup at 5.5″ x 3.8″ x 3.4″ and 1.5 pounds without the lens.  Still, this is lighter and cheaper than similar DSLR APS-C cameras.
  • A battery life of 310 frames and 35 minutes at 4K video.  This is common for mirrorless cameras but is the lowest of the X lineup.

Alternatives to the X-H1

As mentioned previously, the X-T3 is the alternative to the X-H1 for those who don’t need professional video capability. 

The award-winning X-T3 is smaller and lighter, is nearly as rugged, and contains the same sensor & processor.  More details below.

View current X-H1 prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon


X-T3

The 26.1MP X-T3 is the successor to the massively popular X-T2 and has been proclaimed by many the best camera of 2018.  It is available in a couple of different finishes including all black and silver trim, like many others in this Fujifilm camera comparison. 

Fujifilm’s significant firmware updates for the X-T3 will keep it competitive for years to come, making it a great investment.

x-t3 fujifilm camera comparison

Who the X-T3 is for

The X-T3 is for professional and serious photographers who demand great colors, high resolution, and who also record video. 

This is the Swiss Army Knife of Fujifilm cameras.

Highlights of the X-T3

  • Moisture & dust resistant with operating temperatures down to -10C.
  • X Processor Pro and X-Trans CMOS IV sensor, delivering high detail & Fujifilm’s notorious color renditions.
  • Shutter & aperture controls reminiscent of an old camera; easy menus, buttons, and dials to help you focus on the photography and not the camera.
  • Articulating rear LCD touchscreen.
  • 4K video capability up to 59.94fps and 400Mbps.
  • Size & weight: 5.2″ x 3.6″ x 2.3″, 1.19 pounds without a lens.

Disadvantages of the X-T3 for travel

There aren’t a lot of cons for the X-T3 when looking at travel & backpacking applications.  You’ll have to manufacture some “disadvantages,” such as it not having in-body stabilization or GPS; relatively low (12800) native ISO; and slightly slower autofocus compared to Sony mirrorless cameras. 

But those specs are just words; this is an outstanding travel camera.  It is also (save the X-H1) the largest Fujifilm camera. 

The X-T3 has the same reduced battery life found in all mirrorless cameras but grips are available.

Alternatives to the X-T3

The Fujifilm X-T2 was the predecessor to the X-T3.  It does have a slightly smaller & older X-Trans CMOS III 24.3MP sensor, slower 4K framerate, lower burst rate, and no touchscreen, but most other aspects are the same. 

It’s still a workhorse for many travel photographers.  In fact, I’m still hanging on to my X-T2 instead of upgrading to the X-T3 and you can read my reasoning here.

The X-Pro3 is a more compact rangefinder-style camera.  It too has the same sensor & weather resistance of the X-T3. It’s made for a different flavor of photographer and you can read more about it next in this Fujifilm camera comparison.

View current X-T3 prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon


X-Pro3

The X-Pro3 was announced in late 2019, a highly-anticipated upgrade to the X-Pro2.  It is more of a rangefinder-style camera and features a hybrid optical & electronic viewfinder.

fujifilm xpro3

Who the X-Pro3 is for

The 26.1MP X-Pro3 is a great travel camera for professional or serious street photographers who prefer small prime lenses and rangefinder cameras.

Highlights of the X-Pro3

  • The same X-Trans CMOS IV and X Processor Pro found in the X-T3 that gave the X-T3 a reputation of the best camera in 2018.
  • Water & dust-resistant construction, durable body protected down to -10C.
  • The optical viewfinder on the side of the camera overlays basic digital info; full electronic viewfinder options also available.  Viewfinder also includes a magnified focus aide.
  • Basic yet perfectly-arranged controls keep things simple, letting you focus on the pictures (no pun intended).
  • Fujifilm film simulations are so good that JPG shooting is good enough for most people who usually shoot RAW.
  • The main LCD screen is hidden on the inside of the flip-down mechanism; the front displays either your film simulation or basic settings.
  • Size & weight of 5.5″ x 3.3″ x 1.8″, 1.1 pounds.
xpro3 back display

Disadvantages of the X-Pro3 for travel

The X-Pro3 was designed with travel photographers in mind so there aren’t a lot of disadvantages for people who buy this camera for what it does. 

Most of the shortcomings are if you try to use it for other disciplines, like action and wildlife.

  • The X-Pro3 has a short battery life like other mirrorless cameras and there is no external grip available (but that would violate the purpose of this camera).
  • The X-Pro3 does not have a fill flash and does not include the shoe-mount small EF-X8 flash like the X-T3 does.

Alternatives to the X-Pro3

The X-T3 would be a better camera if you need a “jack of all trades” camera that can also shoot action and wildlife.  It too is weather sealed, has the same great processor & sensor as the X-Pro3, is only slightly larger than the X-Pro3, and is actually cheaper than the X-Pro3.

If you don’t have the dough to spend on an X-Pro3 but still like the concept, you can find a great deal on the X-Pro2.  This has the older & smaller but still beautiful X-Trans III 24.3MP sensor also found in the X-T2.

There is also the X100F (details at the end of this Fujifilm camera comparison).  This is also a rangefinder-style 24.3MP camera with the X-Trans III sensor.  The main difference is the fixed lens – it has a 23mm (equivalent to 35mm) lens with a maximum aperture of f/2.  It also does not have weather sealing.

View current X-Pro3 prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon


X-T30

Read about my trial period with the X-T30.

fujifilm xt30

The X-T30 is a mini, non-weather-sealed X-T3.  It still has the same great processor & sensor as the X-T3.

Who the X-T30 is for

The 26.1MP X-T30 is a wonderful choice for serious photographers and hobbyists looking for an all-around travel camera, and one with 4K video capability.

It’s also a good choice for a backup camera for X-T3 owners.

Highlights of the X-T30

  • The combination of the X-Trans CMOS IV processor and Fujifilm’s film simulation modes produces remarkable photos straight out of the camera.
  • Advanced SR AUTO Mode identifies both the overall scene and the subject to calculate the optimal settings.
  • Tilting LCD with touchscreen shooting.
  • Also records 4K video at 29.97fps and Full HD at 120fps.
  • Small size & weight: 4.7″ x 3.3″ x 1.8″, 0.84 pounds.

Disadvantages of the X-T30 for travel

  • No environmental sealing like the X-T3 – this could be a big disadvantage for where you shoot.
  • Smaller electronic viewfinder than the X-T3 may force you to favor the LCD screen.
  • Shorter battery life of mirrorless cameras will give you 350 frames, or approximately 50 minutes of 4K recording.
fujifilm x-t30 back

Alternatives to the X-T30

If you want weather sealing – which is a very desirable feature for travel cameras – you’ll want to upgrade to the X-T3, or even find an older X-T2 if your budget is limited.

The predecessor to the X-T30, the X-T20, is discontinued but is widely available to purchase used.  It has the smaller & older 24.3MP X-Trans CMOS III sensor.  It too is not weather sealed.

The X-T100 is another good alternative to the X-T30.  This camera has a completely different sensor, but it’s just about the same size and also includes a pop-up fill flash.  The X-T100 has a lower burst photo rate and lower 4K video framerate.

View current X-T30 prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon


X-T100

The X-T100 is Fujifilm’s latest APS-C interchangeable lens mirrorless camera.  It was released in June 2018 and is one of the most affordable Fujifilm X interchangeable lens cameras.

You can read my full notes about the X-T100 release here.

fujifilm x-t100

Who the X-T100 is for

The X-T100 makes a great secondary camera for professional or serious photographers. 

It’s also an ideal travel camera for hobbyists who don’t mind a lack of environmental sealing.

Highlights of the X-T100

  • Small, compact design at 4.8″ x 3.3″ x 1.9″ and 0.9 pounds.
  • Fully-articulated touchscreen LCD.
  • Large, easy buttons & dials like the rest of the X lineup make photography with the X-T100 more about creativity than computer manipulation.
  • SR+ AUTO Mode will detect your subject and the scene around it, determining the best settings for the photo.
  • Full Manual, Aperture, and Shutter priority modes are also available.
  • Fujifilm film simulation modes include Classic Chrome, Astia, Provia, and the crowd-favorite Velvia.

Disadvantages of the X-T100 for travel

  • The X-T100 does not have environmental sealing, which is usually a dealbreaker for serious travel photographers.
  • Low profile may make long-term handling uncomfortable; the camera does come with a larger handgrip attachment.
  • You may get excited about the 4K video capability, but at present, it will only record at 15 frames per second.  This won’t be useful for much more than sharing with friends.  Perhaps a firmware update will upgrade this.
XT-100 Lens

Alternatives to the X-T100

The X-T100 is kind of a new class for Fujifilm X cameras, without any clear predecessors. 

But as far as travel cameras go, you may want to consider the X-T30 as an alternative.  It’s slightly more expensive but it gives you a better burst photo & movie recording capability, which may be important to you in certain travel situations.

View current X-T100 prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon


X-E3

The X-E3 features the 24.3MP X-Trans III CMOS sensor and is the smallest ILC camera with a viewfinder in this Fujifilm X series comparison.

fujifilm x-e3

Who the X-E3 is for

The X-E3 is a great compact camera for serious hobbyists – and even professionals who want X-T2 quality but in a simplified camera.  It has a small body but still features the viewfinder that is an important feature for many photographers who don’t like to shoot from the rear LCD.

Highlights of the X-E3

  • Powerful features packed in a small body: X-Trans III processor, 14fps burst shooting, and 4K video at 29.97fps.
  • Touchscreen LCD shooting.
  • Shooting modes from full Manual to SR+ AUTO make it ideal for all situations of travel photography.
  • Includes the small shoe-mount EF-X8 fill flash.
  • Bluetooth pairing with the smartphone app enables GPS tagging.
fujifilm x-e3 top

Disadvantages of the X-E3 for travel

  • A tilting LCD screen is a great feature for a travel camera, but the LCD on the X-E3 is fixed.
  • There is no environmental sealing.
  • The electronic viewfinder is smaller than higher-end Fujifilm X cameras.
  • Short battery life found on all mirrorless cameras will give you approximately 350 shots.

Alternatives to the X-E3

The discontinued X-E2S has the smaller 16.3MP X-Trans II sensor and lower ISO limit.  It does have a larger viewfinder and an integrated pop-up flash.  It does not record 4K video and burst shooting is limited to 7 frames per second.

If you’re okay with a slightly larger camera, the X-T30 does include the innards of the X-E3 but also has a tilting LCD screen.  It does not, however, include the fill flash.

View current X-E3 prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon


Honorable mentions

X100F

x100f

The 24.3MP X100F is the latest in the acclaimed X100 line.  It does not have an interchangeable lens; rather, it has a fixed 23mm f/2 lens (equivalent to 35mm). 

This rangefinder-style camera features the X-Trans CMOS III sensor for beautiful color renditions and Fujifilm film simulation modes.  A digital ND filter will give you some creative freedom on bright days.  It does not have weather sealing. 

The small form factor, beautiful images, and ease of use make it a great “pocket street camera” for travelers. But the fixed focal length & lack of protection doesn’t make it ideal for a primary travel camera. 

I always have mine with me – I call it my “sketchbook.”

Check current prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon

X-A5

The X-A5 is the smallest interchangeable lens in the Fujifilm X series comparison, featuring a 24.2MP CMOS Bayer sensor.  It does not have an electronic viewfinder but it does have a tilting touchscreen LCD.  Additionally, the minimal design only has two control knobs on top, a shooting mode knob and a programmable command dial.  It does have a pop-up fill flash.  This camera is more like your standard compact camera, but with interchangeable lenses and comes with an entry-level 15mm-45mm kit lens.

Check current prices on B&H Photo Video | Amazon

 

We’ll continue to update this Fujifilm X camera comparison as new models are released.  Thanks!

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