Some QUICK thoughts on the newly released Sony A7 III - Canon EOS-M50 - Fuji X-H1 and the Panasonic Lumix G9 - Vlogging
No doubt the Sony A7 III has created the most hype and buzz - and main reason, it is a Sony and it is Full Frame.
Canon of course an entry level Mirrorless camera at $779 -
EOS-M50 Main features - APS-C sensor
- 24MP sensor
- Dual Pixel AF
- Mic In
- Fully articulated LCD
- 4k 25p
Vloggers have been waiting for a smaller camera with Mic in and Headphone jack with Phase Detect/Dul Pixel Tracking AF as well as a Fully Articulated LCD and 4K and 5 axis IBIS.
So yes Canon delivers 4k at 25p but there is a cost to it - Crop - It does not have Sensor shift IBIS - In body image stabilization - rather it has an electroing IBIS which requires Cropping the video on top of the 4k Crop - So with 4K and electronic IBIS the Crop is 2.56 which is massive. So your semi wide angle 24mm lens becomes more like a 50mm lens. Another massive drawback is that once you turn on 4k video recording you no longer get Dual Pixel AF - you only get Contrast based AF.
Just those two things are enough for most Vloggers to say no - but there will be some that are currently using the Canon 80D that only has 1080p say the EOS M50 is smaller and lighter and it has Dual Pixel AF in 1080p and there is slightly less Crop. They can still use their Canon lenses if they buy the Canon adapter. So finally when Canon comes out with 4k it turns out to be a dissapointment and leaves many Vloggers still waiting for the ideal Vlogging camera. Another issue with the EOS-M50 is that Canon still has only few native lenses for their Mirroless system.
Panasonic Lumix G9 Main features - M43 sensor
- Creat video features
- Best in class 5 AXIS IBIS - sensor shift - 6.5 stops
- Fantastic EVF with 3,680,000 Pixcel and 0.83x magnification
- 20FPS with Continues Auto Focus
- 40FPS in Single AF
- Video - 24 and 60p 4K
- Mic In
- Headphone Jack
- Fully articulated LCD
The Panasonic Lumix G9 goes for $1697. It is fully weather sealed and has a great grip and is loaded with features. It is not to small and not to large, It is a Pro grade camera. The G9 is a dream to use, fast and responsive - loaded with Fn buttons and tons of custom features to map to each Fn. Fantastic Touch LCD that includes Touch Foucs and Touch Shutter and full menu control and Playback options, which only Canon and Panasonic do - Sony and Olympus and Fuji only have limited Touch Shutter/Focus and Playback functions. Being that the G9 has nice video features and fully articulated LCD it makes for a good 4k Vlogger camera. Panasonic still only utilizes Contrast base AF - but they have their DFD - Depth From Defocus - which speeds up tracking AF quite a bit but is still no match for Phase Dedect or Canon's Dual Pixel AF for tracking Video focus. The G9 still remains one of the very fastest when it comes to Single AF especially in dim lit situations. The G9 enjoys a huge selection of M43 lenses both from Panasonic and Olympus and others so you will not be dissapointe or have a problem getting lenses - primes and long zooms etc. Yes we would like to see Pansonic implement Pahse Detect AF or Dual Pixel AF to make it super strong both in still shooting and even better with continues AF. The Panasonic G9 has the very practial 4K Photo modes like - Photo Stacking and Post Focus etc. So yes Vloggers will not have the snappy Phase Detect or Dual Pixel tracking AF so will still be wating. The G9 is smaller and lighter then most all DSLRs and the M43 lenses likewise are considerbally smaller and lighter - so If you are looking for a smaller and lighter kit - weather sealed with tons of lenses to select from - super fast FPS or Frames Per Second for wildlife etc then the G9 is a great choice.
Fuji X-H1- APS-C size sensor - $1899
The Fui X-H1 has the same sensor from the X-T2 so image quality will be very similar - which is very good.
Main Features of the X-H1
- Better weather sealing vs the X-T2
- Tad larger body with a very nice grip
- More video features vs the X-T1
- 5 AXIS IBIS - In Body Image Stablilization - sensor shift - 5.5 stops
- Mic in
- Headphone Jack
- Improved AF Tracking
The X-H1 is really the X-T2 but in a more sturdy body with some good improvements - especially with video features. The X-H1 will still not be the ultimate video camera to completely compete with the Panasonic GH5 and GH5s. For one the X-H1 does not have a fully articulated LCD which is so critical for many non pro video folks. So although the Fuji X-H1 has a nice Phase Detect AF system it will not be ideal for Vloggers. Fuji for the frst time introduced sensor shift 5 AXIS In Body Image Stabilization which was overdue as Sony and Olympus and Panasonic and Pentax all have IBIS. For Fuji it is espcially important we think as they have some very nice Prime lenses which do not have Image Stabilization as well as their very nice 16-55mm F2.8. Fuji introduced Touch Shutter and Touch Focus as well as very limited Touch menu support - which is welcome but we wish they took a lesson from Panasonic as they a complete implementation. The X-H1 is a nice addition and is highly recomended.
Sony A7 III Full Frame sensor - $1998
- New Backlit 24MP sensor with more Phase Detect AF points
- 5 AXIS IBIS
- 4K video with logs
- Dual card slots - although not both High Speed
- Weather Selaed
- Improved AF system
Many new updates - The AF has been improved quite a bit and is a close match to that of the A7r III -
The A7 III body has been made a fraction bigger and really matched the A7r III. With the new 24MP backlit sensor we can expect better low light performance. Sony likes to say that dynamcis range should be between the Nikon D750 and D850. The A7r III for around 33% more money does offer a 42MP sensor and few minor things - so the A7 III compares well with its feature set and for many who do not need the high MP count will be a much better option.
You are buying into the FE mount - which yes has a decent selection by now but has also been know to be very expensive - mostly Zeiss and Sony GM lenses and very very few Sony only branded lenses. Likewise so far there are not many F1.2 or F1.4 or even F1.8 primes so far - Sigma is rolling out quite a few new Art series lenses in the FE mount in the next 12-24 months and speaking about Sigma Art lenses - yes they are heavy.
So yes the A7 III is a rather small body camera - but do not forget you still need to mount Full Frame lenses to it and they will be large and hevy - Yes a bit more dynamic range etc - but costlier and larger and heavier.
So for many The Fuji X system in APS-C or the Sony E APS-C and the M43 or Micro Four Thirds system with Panasonic and Olympus are more attractive options -
The A7 III offers fantastic low light performanse and super super good tracking AF.