Fujifilm X-S10 vs X-T30 - Head-to-head Comparison
Although they look quite different and occupy slightly different price-points, the XS10 and XT30 actually share a lot of similarities when it comes to their specifications and features, so much so that cash-conscious buyers may be wondering if the older model offers everything that they need, or whether the newer XS10 has a few clever tricks up its sleeve that are worth the extra outlay.
So we're bringing you this in-depth Fujifilm X-S10 vs X-T30 head-to-head comparison to help you choose between the two.
You can also read our detailed Fujifilm X-S10 review and Fujifilm X-T30 review to find out exactly what we think of each one.
The image sensor used in the X-S10 and the X-T30 is exactly the same - the very latest 26 megapixel APS-C sized BSI X-Trans sensor - which is also used by the X-T4 and the X-Pro3.
All four of those Fuji cameras also share the same X-Processor 4 processor.
So now Fujifilm are offering you not one, not two, not three, but four quite different ways to get exactly the same high image quality.
You can choose between the rangefinder design of the X-Pro3 or the DSLR design of the X-T4, X-S10 and X-T30, and between the larger X-T4 and the smaller X-S10 or X-T30, and still get the same results.
The native sensitivity range of both cameras is ISO 160 to ISO 12,800, which can be expanded to ISO 80 to ISO 51,200.
The X-S10 offers a slightly better video mode than the X-T30.
Both cameras offer the highest quality rate of DCI 4K/30p with no crop recorded in 4:2:0 8-bit internally and 4:2:2 10-bit via the micro-HDMI port to an external recorder.
If you want 4K/60p video, you'll need to go up the range to the X-T4.
The X-S10 and X-T30 only support the Long GOP compression format, whereas the X-T4 supports both Long GOP and All Intra.
One advantage that the XS10 has over the X-T30 is the maximum recording time of 30 minutes, which is 20 minutes longer than the 10-minute limit on the X-T30.
Other pluses that the X-S10 offers which the X-T30 lacks include the F-Log profile, 1080p/240p 10x slow-motion mode, digital image stabiliser which works in conjunction with the in-camera and lens-based systems, IS Mode Boost, and different Main menu and Quick menu systems for stills and video modes.
The new X-S10 has exactly the same hybrid autofocus system with phase detection and and contrast detections points as the X-T30, X-T4 and X-Pro3.
In the Single point AF mode there are up to 425 selectable AF points arranged in a 25x17 grid. Alternatively, the camera can be set to 117 points in a 13x9 grid, and the size of the points can also be varied.
In addition to Single point AF, there’s Zone AF which allows the AF points to be selected in 3x3, 5x5 or 7x7 groups, and Wide/Tracking AF.
The main difference between the X-S10 and X-T30 when it comes to auto-focusing is the low-light sensitivity.
The X-S10 can focus down to -6EV, but the X-T30's minimum sensitivity is only -3EV.
The X-S10 and X-T30 both offer a respectable 8fps continuous shooting speed when using the mechanical shutter, but the X-T4 takes things to a whole other level by being able to shoot at 15fps.
All three cameras can achieve 20fps when switching to the electronic shutter without any crop, or 30fps with a 1.25x crop applied.
Body and Design
The design of the body and controls is one of the main differences between the XS10 and the XT30.
While the X-T30 is slightly smaller and 82g lighter than its newer sibling, the X-S10 has a much bigger grip, bigger even than the one on the X-T4.
This appealingly large handgrip makes the camera very secure to hold even one-handed.
Meanwhile, the new X-S10 purposedly has a much simpler interface in order to try and make it more appealing to less experienced users.
If you've ever considered a Fujifilm camera but been put of by its plethora of manual controls - something that a lot of people love with a passion - then the new XS10 will certainly be more up your street.
Instead of the drive dial, Shutter Speed dial and Exposure Compensation dial found on top of the X-T30, there's just a customisable Function dial on the left and shooting mode dial on the right of the top of the XS10.
The X-S10 has a dedicated one-touch movie record button on its top-plate, whereas on the X-T30 you have to be in the movie shooting mode and then use the shutter button to start recording video.
It also has an ISO button and Quick Menu button on top - the X-T30 lacks the former and has the latter on its rear plate.
An added bonus for some people is the inclusion of a built-in pop-up flash on both models, something that the more pro-oriented XT4 doesn't have.
The main concession to the more aggressive price-points of the XS10 and XT30 from a build quality point of view is the complete lack of any weather-sealing - if this is a must-have feature, then you'll need to step-up to the X-T4.
The XS10 is the third Fujifilm camera to feature 5-axis in-body image stabilisation (IBIS), following the X-H1 and the X-T4.
Meanwhile, the X-T30 doesn't have IBIS at all, instead relying on the OIS stabilisation offered by the attached lens (if it has any).
Fujifilm's engineers have drastically shrunk the IBIS unit to help make the XS10 as small as it is, making it 30% smaller than the IBIS unit in the X-T4, which in turn was 30% smaller than the one in the X-H1.
The only slight negative consequence of this reduction in size is a slight reduction in the amount of stabilisation that's on offer.
The X-T4 provides up to 6.5 shutter steps of compensation, whereas the X-S10 provides up to a maximum of 6 stops. This is still half a stop better than the 5.5 offered by the X-H1.
The X-S10 and X-T30 both have a 2.36M-dot OLED electronic viewfinder with 0.62x magnification, maximum 100fps refresh rate and a built-in eye sensor.
The XS10 has a fully articulating vari-angle 3-inch LCD screen.
You can flip out the screen to the side, rotate it forwards for easier operation when pointing the camera at yourself, and fold it flat against the back of the camera to stop it from getting scratched.
This free-angle design proves to be very versatile screen for vlogging, movie shooting and photography in general.
The XT30 has a less versatile monitor that can be tilted up and down by 90 degrees, but can't be tilted out to the side.
The resolution of the screen - 1.04M-dots - is the same on both cameras.
Perhaps unsurprisingly given the smaller, more compact size of the X-S10, it only has a single memory card slot, just like the X-T30, whereas the larger X-T4 has dual card slots.
The memory card slot is next to the battery in a shared compartment on the bottom of both cameras, rather than housed behind a lockable door on the side of the camera.
So the location of the memory card on the XS10 and XT30 isn't very convenient, especially when the camera is mounted on a tripod, and the single memory card slot is less flexible and offers less peace of mind than the dual slots on the XT-4.
The Fujifilm X-S10 uses exactly the same NP-126S battery as the X-T30, rather than the larger capacity NP-W235 battery of the X-T4 model.
This offers a CIPA-rated battery life of up to 325 shots on a single charge when using the LCD screen, compared with 500 shots for the XT4.
All three cameras can also be powered and charged via a USB-C connection, which is useful if you're out and about and have a compatible powerbank to plug the camera into.
Commendably Fujifilm are offering the XS10 as a kit with three different lenses.
There's the cheaper XC 15-45mm F3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens, the popular XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.0 OIS, and the more expensive XF 16-80mm f/4 R LM OIS WR.
The X-T30 ships with either the XC 15-45mm or the XF 18-55mm, but not the XF 16-80mm
So you actually get slightly more choice with the XS10.
Both cameras can also be purchased body-only too.
In the UK the Fujifilm X-S10 costs £949 body only, £999 with the XC 15-45mm lens, £1299 with the XF 18-55mm lens, or £1399 with the XF 16-80mm lens.
The Fujifilm X-T30 costs £849 body only, £899 with the XC 15-45mm lens, or £1,149 with the XF 18-55mm lens, so it's slightly cheaper than the X-S10.
The new X-S10 joins the X-series range by slotting in between the more expensive X-T4 and the slightly cheaper X-T30.
Compared to the latter, the XS10 offers the main benefits of in-body image stabilisation, a much bigger grip, slightly better video, greater low-light sensitivity for autofocusing, a fully-articulating LCD screen, and a simpler user interface.
The X-T30 is smaller and lighter than the X-S10 and it offers the distinctive retro dials that many Fujifilm fans love.
So what do you think? Would you choose the new X-S10 or the cheaper X-T30? Leave a comment below!