So i’ve been a complete Fuji shooter for the past 6 years. I love Fuji cameras, they’re brilliant for reportage and wedding photography and seem to keep getting better and better. I always shoot with two lenses, the XF23mm f1.4 (35mm equivalent) and the 56m f1.2 (85mm equivalent). At the beginning of this year I took my Xpro2 out with the 23mm and conducted an unplanned drop test which the lens sadly did not pass. I was therefore on the lookout for a 35mm replacement for the 2018 wedding season.
The obvious choice was a direct replacement for the lens I lost, but that didn't stop me having a look at other alternatives. I had previous owned the X100 and x100s and used them in both personal work and wedding work. I loved those cameras and the X100F was pretty temping however for the same price I was able to pick up a used Sony RX1R (with attached EVF). That might see a little odd and and frankly a bit nuts to do considering I was happy with my fuji gear…. let me explain.
Now the RX1r is pretty legendary although niche camera. Its a full frame 24mp CMOS sensor mated to a absolutely stunning Zeiss 35mm F2. The result is quite possibly (in my humble opinion) the best 35mm IQ you can get out of a mirrorless camera. Now the whole full frame/crop argument has been going on for ages and It can be difficult to make comparisons between different systems, but i’ll give it a go. The RX1R has effectly the same field of view as the XF23 1.4 and roughly the same depth of field. High ISO performance is very good and beats the XPro2, i’d say there it’s about a stop better at ISO 6400. The lens is sharper than the fuji and the bokeh is creamy and more pleasing. The camera is smaller than the X100 series. So…the RX1R has better IQ that the Xpro2 with the XF23mm 1.4 mounted, in a body smaller than a X100F. Its not all great though. Af is…..well not terrible…but not great either. At stationary subjects, its snappy and what’s you’d expect. When subjects start moving, things start to go downhill. AF is contrast detection only and there is no option for continuous tracking (well there is but it does not work!) AF is on par with with the X100s or XE1.
Despite the AF short fall the camera is an amazing candid wedding shooter. The beautiful images coming out of the sensor are leagues above what you can get out of the current line up of Fujis at 35mm. I have loved using the RX1r this year and I’m planning to keep hold of it for as long as can. Below is a small selection of images taken this year with the RX1R.