A Good Reasonable Starter Camera

Start with an APSC camera

If you are unfamiliar with the world of cameras and thinking of buying a digital camera, it can be a very confusing world. Not everyone has access to a trusted camera store which might leave you looking at cameras in a box store. I would suggest that unless you are never going to print you images you will likely be looking at what in the camera world is called an APSC camera. This means the sensor is roughly half the size of a 35mm piece of film, but the with the most recent cameras the resolution and quality is roughly equivalent to the quality one use to get out of a 35mm film camera. I am avoiding “Full Frame” cameras where the sensor is the same size as 35mm, because these cameras tend to be expensive, larger and their lenses more expensive. However, it you have the money and don’t mind the larger sizes you may wish to consider these cameras instead.

Choose Mirrorless over DSLR

Having narrowed it down to APSC cameras I would also suggest that you may also want to make sure it is a mirrorless camera and not a DSLR. I say this not because one is better than the other but because mirrorless cameras have a faster learning curve, are smaller and are lighter. I also might add that the technology in mirrorless cameras tends in most cases to be more advance. However it is the faster learning curve that I think is more important.

Fujifilm APSC Mirrorless

Currently there are a lot of very good mirrorless cameras on the market but the ones with the APSC size sensors in them, I would suggest Fujifilm is perhaps the highest quality and the best value for your money. Sony may also be a good choice but the lenses designed for the Sony APSC cameras tend to be of lower quality as most of the higher quality lenses are designed for Sony’s full frame camera and are therefore usually much larger and more expensive than the Fujifilm lenses. Fujifilm does not make Full Frame cameras so their lenses are designed for only APSC cameras therefore it is easier for them to produce a smaller higher quality lens at a lower price.

Entry Level Fujifilm Cameras

Fujifilm makes three styles of cameras in their “X” series, the X-A series, the X-E series and the X-T series. The X-A series is the small consumer level camera which I am not recommending as they lacks controls, a viewfinder and its processor and sensor are of a lower quality than the other two series. However these cameras do produce very nice images. I am going to recommend cameras from either the X-E or X-T series. Specifically the older X-T20 or the newer X-E3 or X-T30.

X-E3 X-T20 X-T30

These three cameras, which lack the water residence found on the X-T2 and X-T3, are far cheaper. In terms of image quality the the X-20 and X-E3 have the same 24MP sensor and processor as the X-T2. X-T3 and X-T30 have a newer 26MP sensor and processor but the image quality is very similar, perhaps fractionally better at low ISOs and fractionally worse at high ISOs. From what I have seen in test results the image quality is not significantly different.


You can see from the list below that the older versions the X-T20 and the the slightly newer camera the X-E3 are considerably cheaper than the new X-T3.

  • X-E3 $900 CDN
  • X-T20 $770 CDN
  • X-T30 $1,200 CDN
  • X-T2 $1050 CDN
  • X-T3 $1900 CDN

How Do they Differ

Click here for a side by side comparison of the three cameras.

The basic difference between the X-E3 and the other cameras is it is design to look and ergonomically feel like a range finder camera and it is the smallest of the three cameras, with a fixed LCD screen. However it is newer than the X-T20 so it sports the redesigned rear of the camera similar to the X-T30 and bluetooth unlike the X-T20 .

Deciding between the X-T30 and X-E3

I would recommend looking at either the X-T30 or X-E3 as these are both newer than the X-T20. The main differences between them, aside from 2MP, is the fixed screen on the the X-E3 and the flexible LCD on the X-T30. If you can live with the fixed screen then I would go with the X-E3 as it is cheaper and smaller.