Published Apr 28, 2020
The fixed lens camera market may be a bit niche, but it’s here that you’ll find some of the best cameras you can buy. Sensors ranging from APS-C format to full-frame are designed to match their lenses (which cover ranges from 28-75mm equiv.) so image quality is top-notch.
This segment includes both pocketable models without viewfinders and ‘best worn over your shoulder’ cameras with unique or ultra-high-resolution EVFs. There’s a gigantic spread in pricing, as well. The Fujifilm XF10 can be had for under $500, while the Leica Q2 sells for around $5000.
Our pick: Fujifilm X100V
The X100V is the most well-rounded and capable prime lens compact camera we’ve seen, offering a great combination of image quality and design aesthetic at a decent price. The redesigned lens is much improved both at close distances and in the corners, the hybrid optical / electronic viewfinder is both novel and genuinely useful and a tilting touchscreen makes it easier to shoot from the hip.
In addition to producing great files straight out of the camera, this camera has the most robust video feature set in its class. All of this, combined with excellent and extensive external controls, makes the X100V an impressively engaging camera to shoot with.
Pocketable option: Ricoh GR III
If you want a more pocketable camera – or prefer a wider lens – then there’s Ricoh’s GR III. It has a 24MP APS-C sensor, 28mm F2.8 lens, in-body image stabilization and a hybrid AF system.
Image quality is good, autofocus quick in good light (or high contrast situations) and its controls (including a touchscreen) are well-designed. On the other hand, out-of-camera JPEGs aren’t the best, and neither is low light AF. We wish the camera had a built-in flash and better outside LCD visibility, and battery life is poor.
While the X100V and GR III are our favorite cameras of the bunch, the models below are also worthy of your consideration:
* This camera has not been fully reviewed and is therefore not eligible for an award.