Hybrids continue to eclipse the reflex: for beginners they are smaller, more ergonomic and versatile. Many experts / pros are sometimes more efficient and lighter. Here’s our selection of the best models tested by the editor …
Also called “Compact System Camera”, “CSC” , “ILC” (Interchangeable Lens Camera) or “mirrorless” hybrid, as it is called more generally, have convinced much public. Urban (e) moving light and seeks minnows like Panasonic GM1 to the professional who found in her Fujifilm X-T2 and it’s fixed focal upscale, the successor to his Nikon F2 old, rare photographic niches are not to have a credible alternative to the reflex.
Hybrids are much more varied in forms and dimensions that their ancestors.When reflex chooses between two sensors standard, APS-C, and full frame, hybrids are equipped with sensors from the Pentax Q of the compact to full-size sensor (24 x 36 mm) Sony Alpha. With, in the middle, 1 inch formats, Micro 4/3 and APS-C. This variety allows sticking to a greater number of different uses, a boon to photographers.
The first advantage of the hybrid compared to the reflex is its compactness, which is made possible by the absence of mirror – hence the term “mirrorless”above. The ousting of the mirror reduces not only the size of the boxes but also of optical more “Frame” is close to the sensor, the less optical must be long. At equal size sensor, a hybrid is more compact and lighter.
An important factor: how many reflex moldy in a closet or on a shelf because they are overweight? Another advantage resulting from the disappearance of the mirror is, of course, the burst, swifter in hybrids since there are more (fragile) mechanical parts to operate.
If the reflex were primarily “machines to produce still images” hybrids are, as their name suggests, mutants as comfortable in the image fixed in the video. The ousting of the mirror, the focus by contrast detection, the still active viewfinder coupled with more appropriate ergonomics (adjustable touch screen, etc.) allow them to actually replace a family camcorder or even pro cameras in the case of some models like the Panasonic GH4. Added to this is a much faster AF in video and the generalization of the 4K and, again, hybrid score points.
The advent of the electronic viewfinder
If benefits were already numerous in the past, the technical turning point of their success lies somewhere between 2014 and 2015, with the arrival of quality electronic viewfinders. Previously too cramped, too dark or poorly defined, viewfinders LCD or OLED panels hybrids were not convincing. At least until the arrival of the OM-D E-M1 Olympus: the first device to offer a targeted quality “pro”.
Following him, the market has followed suit and has also known models with electronic viewfinders good. Above course range, but also in mainstream models: even a box to 799 €, like the recently Panasonic G7 turns out good and almost as comfortable as the more expensive models. The technology continues to improve – the new viewfinder 4 points Millions of the latest Leica SL is simply fabulous – but the level of the ‘sufficient’ is reached. Another advantage of the reflex that vanishes …
Reflex dominated, but not dead
Like the web following the TV, which followed the radio, following the clipboard, etc. hybrids do not mark the definitive death of reflex, but the end of their domination. In some cases, such as sports photography or nature, the number of available optics, Live View shooting, the grip or the robustness of reflex still have to mean for photographers. Hybrids have yet to flesh out their offerings telephoto zooms and resistance pros housings, which is not yet at the D4S and other 1DX Nikon and Canon, which leaves them a small niche where they can shine technically. In other areas, however – street photography, landscape, family, diving, etc. – reflex virtually no longer have any interest.
The notes and the ranking does not however make you lose sight of that housing is a sum of parameters – dimensions, ergonomics, optical park, etc.Thus it is possible that you are more a shooter “Fuji”, shot mainly to pure photo and beautiful fixed focal lengths or more versatile reporter, in which case the video performance and functionality of Panasonic housings are the weapons of choice. Before choosing the device for you, so remember to evaluate the ecosystem!
10. Fujifilm X-T1
Rented by a whole generation of new reporters, the Fujifilm X-T1 is a device photographer that highlights textbooks walkouts and fixed focal lengths. It’s excellent APS-C sensor stands up to full format from Sony and Fujifilm is the only brand to offer a Jpeg made as magical. The downside: a bright autofocus less than Pana / Olympus and a video mode in the background. A choice of housing for photographers “pure” identity reinforced by a deliberately retro-chic design.
Overall rating: 8.11 / 10 | Price: 900 €
9. Panasonic Lumix GH4
The Lumix GH4 is a monster video. Good picture, with a clear and nervous AF, it is super robust and enjoy the best video quality … all categories combined! It is even so good at it that he replaces the film cameras in many locations. Able to shoot video 4K cinema to 200 Mbit / s, this is a fabulous image machine which takes advantage of Optical Micro 4/3 park, the richest of the competition. It is not the best pure photo, but it is very versatile.
Overall rating: 8.22 / 10 | Price: 1000 €
8. Panasonic Lumix GX80
Rich in features, the Lumix GX80 is an excellent balance between good performance, beautiful design and a moderate price. Panasonic signs here a device “killer” as it may suit a wide range of users: street photographer, family, hipster attached to the aesthetics of housing, traveler (the device is light), etc.Its housing free of low-pass filter – a first for Panasonic – offers a true image sharpness gain, even with the optical delivered in kit; Far from race performance, Panasonic has here sought to improve the use and handling.And it is a great success!
Overall rating: 8.23 / 10 | Price: 700 €
7. Fujifilm X-Pro 2
After X-Pro 1, which had seduced the professional reporters, the X-Pro 2 does more than transform the test: it corrects (almost) all the errors of his grandfather. In addition to its new sensor 24 megapixel much more powerful than the previous model, it has (finally!) An AF can be among the best of its kind, a manufacturing quality a notch above, a dual SD card slot, a full HD video mode finally worthy of the name, etc. Faster, more enduring and more powerful, it takes advantage of the excellent optical park Fujifilm.
And like all the brand appliances it produces JPEG files so beautiful that it is often useless to develop RAW files!
Overall rating: 8.24 / 10 | Price: 1700 €
6. Sony Alpha A7S Mark II
twin brother of the A7 A7R Mark II and Mark II, the “S” version is a little king of shadows: it can shoot up to ISO 400,000! And it’s not a bluff because the pictures are perfectly clean and usable up to ISO 51,200. Its night performances combine its advanced video capabilities since it runs in 4K and provides advanced options dedicated videographers. Its low definition 12 megapixel, however, limit its crop capacity and wealth of clichés, but a range of effect desired by Sony.
Overall rating: 8.26 / 10 | Price: 3200 €
5. Sony Alpha A7 Mark II
Its strength lies in its full size 24 x 36 mm sensor, the same size as those of professional reflexs. Coupled with some optical high-end Sony (like the excellent 55mm f / 1.8) is an expert housing remains affordable and its large sensor allows it to produce beautiful background blur. More resistant than the old version (Alpha A7) it fishing by the lack of 4K video and AF behind.
Overall rating: 8.28 / 10 | Price: 1800 €
4. Olympus OM-D E-M1
Two years after its release, not only OM-D E-M1 remains in the top 10 but it also wins seats compared to the classification of October. The reason ? The regular updates including the latest 4.0 that provides unique features such as focus stacking or stabilization of the video sensor that made him so lacking.To these improvements are added as the acquis gust to 9 i / s (subject tracking!), Resistant housing, an ultra fast AF and the complete optical park making it the weapon of choice of the pros reporters like Magnum. If the sensor is smaller and dated as Sony or Leica is a formidable machine to produce images.
Overall rating: 8.29 / 10 | Price: 1200 €
3. Panasonic Lumix GX8
(Lumix GX8) The new device “defer” Panasonic is a small bomb technology: 4K, adjustable electronic viewfinder new generation super AF, etc. Panasonic has redesigned the grip relative to the GX7 and it approaches a little telemetry with its remote viewfinder. Compatible Micro 4/3, it is drip, fully complete and very solid.
Overall rating: 8.41 / 10 | Price: 1600 €
2. Sony Alpha A7R Mark II
The A7R Mark II enjoys a 42-megapixel sensor that puts it directly on top of the competition. Equipped with good optics, this full frame sensor housing delivers snapshots of a unique precision in the world of hybrids. Added to this is the 4K UHD video and stabilization of the sensor to graft any Canon or Nikon optics while enjoying stabilization. A pro device that actually fishing as the lack of optical able to meet such a sensor and its autonomy to the picks (250 shots). For the rest, it’s a killer, plain and simple.
Overall rating: 8.55 / 10 | Price: 3500 €
1. Fujifilm X-T2
The Fujifilm X-T2 is the mark of the technological maturity of Fujifilm hybrids.With this case, Fuji has kept its major assets: image quality and exceptional color and the optical lineup that refers. This, while progressing on areas where it was worth, namely autofocus and video. And it’s more than progress because, in both areas, Fujifilm spends ranked bottom on top of what is done currently.Beautiful, well finished and durable, the X-T2 is more than a success: a reference.
Overall rating: 9.34 / 10 | Price: 1600 €