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Best Camera for You? Sony A1 + Sony FE 24-70/2.8 GM II vs Fujifilm GFX100S + Fujifilm GF 35-70/4.5-5.6

I’ll be testing the new Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM II just as soon as I can get hold of one.

UPDATE: see reader comments.

If you were to standardize on a mid-range zoom, what would it be? Which is best is a highly personal decision depending on your preferences and what you shoot. Consider:

  • The 50MP Sony A1 is unrivalled for responsiveness, lightning-fast accurate autofocus, blackount-free shooting, etc (Nikon Z9 probably is at the same level).
  • Fujifilm GFX100S is unrivalled in medium format for its 100MP resolution and compact form factor. You have to go to systems costing 4X to 6X as much to do better on image quality (eg PhaseOne IQ4 150), but with a big loss off convenience and a huge increase in weight/bulk.

CLICK TO VIEW: Fujifilm mid-range lenses

CLICK TO VIEW: Mid-range zooms for Sony mirrorless

Just some of the things to consider:

  • Weight/bulk.
  • Enjoyment in using the camera. The GFX100S is clunky by comparison; the Sony A1 is a joy and brilliantly responsive in everything it does.
  • Megapixels: GFX100S captures 100MP, but by no means does it double the resolved detail of the 50MP Sony A1—lens performance, diffraction from stopping down another stop (for equivalent DoF), real depth of field, focus shift and field curvature, focus accuracy, etc all sum up to a total 'game'. You will get more with the GFX100S, but how much more and does it matter to your purposes?
  • Per-pixel image quality: I won’t cede any ground to GFX100S vs Sony A1. So it’s only about how many pixels and their sharpness, not about pixel quality.
  • Features: the Sony A1 is far beyond the GFX100S in just about everything. But it lacks one crucial feature: focusing stacking support. It’s a glaring omission that the GFX100S solves.
  • Focus accuracy: recent proofs I’ve published along with field disappointments tell me that the GFX100S has serious AF issues so much that I cannot rely on it for landscape photography—manual focus is essential, as is dealing with focus shift. The Sony A1 gets the job done right 99% of the time, with stunningly fast and quiet AF motors that are 2nd to none and demolish Fujifilm’s clunky GF motors. If you cannot trust your camera accurate focus, how sharp is it? And if it sounds cheap and feels slow, it’s not a great experience.

Sometime in late June when the new Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 GM II arrives, it is my intention to compare it the to GFX100S + 35-70mm. Because those two kits are directly comparable in price. How much better is the the GFX100S? Is it actually better in meaningful way, and does it even matter for most of us? Because for all sorts of general photography, the Sony A1 is way more convenient, pleasurable to use, and so on.

My comments leave out the Nikon Z9 + Nikon NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/2.8 S, but assuming the weight/bulk is OK with you, that might also be a fine combo. But it’s also darn hard to obtain at this point, and I have yet to review it.

Sony A1 + Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM II
Fujifilm GFX100S + Fujifilm GF 35-70mm f/4.5-5.6

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