October 30, 2016

Whenever I’m deciding to buy something crucial (a.k.a those that would cost a lot), it always takes me more than a month and even then, I’m still not sure whether I made the right decision or not. I mean, I do my research and I ask around from friends who I know has knowledge on what I’m seeking advice for, and I always consult my moral compass—my ever practical boyfriend. Lol. But somehow, I still keep feeling as though I still haven’t done enough. So I decided, why not just make a segment on my blog of me soliciting for your advice? Haha! A year before, I wouldn’t even consider this but since people are now commenting on my blog posts (thank you everyone!! I’m the happiest when I read and reply to your messages <3), I thought it’s worth a shot.

I’ve been stuck on an Instagram rut for some days now. None of the photos I have on my phone (which I also took with my phone) seemed to suffice my aesthetics and/or standards anymore. I was looking at all of it and I’m like, I shot this with enough natural light but why is it still so grainy. It’s frustrating. And I’m thinking of all the cute and beautiful places I’ve been to and I’m wishing that I had a decent camera that I took with me to take pictures of it. Lastly, ever since I’ve started this new blog I’ve shied away from a lot of themes because my photos are crappy and it would just ruin the whole feel of the blog. I just had to accept the reality that my phone just isn’t enough for my needs anymore.

High school me would be rooting for a DSLR but the 20 year old me now can’t be bothered to lug around a bulky camera. What better way to satiate my photography enthusiasm than by jumping on the mirrorless camera bandwagon. I started off my search with “the best mirrorless cameras in 2016” and I came across this TechRadar article. They had a pretty decent list and it’s what I narrowed my list down to.


Nikon 1 J5. This is the one that I’m seriously considering to buy. It has 20MP, a tilting screen, and its ISO is adjustable. I’m also digging the retro look! I’ve read that the downside was it records at 15fps only but it’s really not something I concern myself with as I’m not much into taking videos. [Price on Lazada: 22, 000+PHP | 25, 000PHP accoring to PriceMe]


Fujifilm X-M1. With its 16MP and adjustable ISO, this was actually my first choice a few months back but I was having such a difficult time finding one! I was searching for this on Lazada but it costs so much! I even found one that costs 25, 000PHP. I guess if I ever do find one, I’ll have to settle for secondhand because the saleslady at the Fujifilm store I went to told me that they don’t make the X-M1 anymore. 🙁 [2nd hand on OLX: 16, 000PHP]


Panasonic GF7. I’ve mentioned before that my lust for DSLR has dialed down a notch because I hate carrying around bulky stuff which makes this camera from Panasonic perfect for the lazy girl in me. It has 16MP, a retractable lens (similar to those of compact point and shoot cameras), and a tilting screen. The only downside with this is that its kit lens, 12-32mm, can only shoot a short zoom range. Some people say that it can be remedied by buying another set of lens but I don’t think I can afford a camera + lens at the same time just yet. [Price according to PricePanda: 16, 000+ PHP | 18, 000+PHP on Lazada]


Canon EOS M3. I have always been a fan of Canon cameras. I like the quality of the photos that their DSLRs produced and when I viewed sample photos taken by the M3, they did not disappoint. It has an unbelievable 24MP! The only downside that I’ve read was that there aren’t a lot of lenses available but as a beginner/enthusiast, I think I can live with it for the time being. [Price according to YugaTech: 25, 998PHP]

I took out Fujifilm X-A2 and Fujifilm X-A3 out from my list because they are on the pricier end of my budget (assuming that I am going for brand new ones). I know my reasons for listing the said cameras are pretty basic — megapixels, adjustable ISO, tilting screen, low light picture quality and whether or not I like the sample shots from various blogs — but I’m not a pro. I just want to produce better quality pictures for my blog and my Instagram. I’m not really planning on making a living out of it so I’m really keen on splurging too much for it. If you have any suggestions: a better but cheaper unit; a better unit; where I can buy one (brand new or secondhand, I’m not really picky); or you simply just want to share you experience with any of the said cameras or what you think are the major dealbreakers/pros and cons, please feel free to share them with me on the comments section down below! I’ll really appreciate it. 🙂

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  • Reply Andi October 30, 2016 at 9:10 pm

    Wow!!! We have the same struggle. I feel that my phone isn’t really enough capturing moments. I was studying and researching for the best budget mirrorless camera and I am eyeing for Fujifilm X-A2. But I think X-A3 is a better choice for me now since it’s gonna be released in the Philippines this November. I’ll check on the XM1.
    PS. I am not a pro photographer. I’m just a casual cameraphone user who doesn’t even know what aperture means. I just capture what seems to be nice in my eyes. But now I am willing to train and study photography.

    • Reply Pia October 31, 2016 at 2:49 am

      I do think that the X-A3 would be a no-brainer choice for me too but it’s too pricey for me! 😀 Since I’m just starting out, I’m just looking for cheap ones that would still produce quality photos. The X-M1 is pretty difficult to find nowadays because I was told Fujifilm doesn’t produce them anymore.

      • Reply Andi October 31, 2016 at 4:46 am

        probably a second hand xM1 will do. But why not try XA2?? LOL. So I’ll get to see fujifilm’s actions in your photos and decide if i’ll buy too. hahaha

        • Reply Pia October 31, 2016 at 5:43 am

          It’s still too expensive for my budget. Haha! A lot of bloggers use the X-A2 so maybe you can check out their photos. 🙂

  • Reply Sheena Gonzales November 2, 2016 at 1:29 am

    I got the Fuji Xa2 and I love it!


    • Reply Pia November 2, 2016 at 3:05 am

      Oh wow! Did you take your blog (and IG) pictures with the X-A2? I love your photos. <3

  • Reply Da Dominguez November 2, 2016 at 1:34 am

    Recently bough an XA2 because it’s on a promo. It took me ~months~ before deciding on what to buy but I guess other bloggers swayed me into the Fujifilm hype. Haha! So according to my own experience, look into physical stores (prices in Lazada are higher). Plus, it’s important for you to inspect the camera before purchasing them. How much is your budget limit ba? Hehe. You could also try Sony a5000. 😉

    xx, The Diary Queen

    • Reply Pia November 2, 2016 at 3:09 am

      Thanks for the tip, Da! I think I can only shell out 25, 000PHP for a camera since I’m really just a beginner and I don’t have any plans of making photography as a living so I’m really opting for cheap but functional ones. I was looking at Sony cameras too but they’re too expensive.

      • Reply Arvin Castro November 7, 2016 at 1:48 pm

        Yung Sony A5000 nasa 20k sa Henry’s 🙁 Mukhang wala pa kapalit na entry level mirrorless.

  • Reply Bea November 3, 2016 at 7:31 am

    I bought a Fujifilm X-A2 too like Da just this year and I’m loving it. It took me 3 months because I can’t just let go of 25,000 pesos. If you’re not yet buying consider it because I know the price is lesser na due to the X-a3 release. I usually buy my gadget in GH Vira Mall (wag sa tiangge deliks) and they’re cheaper than the one in the malls and online OR try Kimstore!! Sony are good too. But if you’re gonna make me pick through your list, I’ll pick the nikon one. 🙂

    • Reply Pia November 3, 2016 at 7:44 am

      Thanks for the suggestion, Bea! <3 I was really into the X-A2 before but it was out of my budget then. I guess I'll wait it out until they lower its price. The Nikon 1 J5 is my first choice actually, because it's the most cost-efficient for me. I find Sony cameras too expensive for me so I tend to leave out their products as I'm putting myself on a really tight budget. Lol.

  • Reply Dianne Kathreen November 4, 2016 at 6:28 am

    Love reading your blog, Pia! (Feeling close, but hi!) X-A2 will always be my dream camera but it’s pretty costy. Maybe the Nikon one will be great, in my opinion. I’m using Nikon but the DSLR type and I have to admit that I’m getting tired of bringing this bulky camera, but it does the job so I can’t complain. Lol. Nikon DSLR has great quality, so I’m pretty sure their mirrorless camera is a great deal, too. 🙂

    • Reply Pia November 4, 2016 at 6:35 am

      Hi Kathreen! Thank you. 🙂 And omg, you are my highschool classmate’s girlfriend!! Anyway, when I was into DSLRs I was begging for a Nikon (and then a Canon) from my dad but he wouldn’t budge. Lol. I’m really leaning towards the Nikon 1 J5 because I looked at the sample pictures and they were really great! If I weren’t on a strict budget, I would totally buy the X-A2. 😀

  • Reply Arvin Castro November 7, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    Nagtitingin ako recently ng camera dahil yung Sony A5000 dati ko e nasira last year, under warranty pa yun pero ang pinalit nung store na binilan ko (Abenson) e GoPro Hero 4 Silver kasi wala na sila stocks nung A5000.

    Akala ko OK yung X-A2 pero nakita ko na hindi pala pwede gawing remote yung phone kapag niconnect gamit yung app -__- dealbreaker.

    Yung Canon M3, ampangit ng battery life kaya tingin ko mas ok pa rin yung Sony A5000. E wala pa rin naman mukhang ipapalit yung Sony na entry-level na mirrorless. Antagal tuloy bumaba nung value sa market.

    • Reply Pia November 8, 2016 at 4:59 am

      Thank you so much for all the insight, Arvin! This is really helpful. 🙂 I didn’t know that about the M3 because most of the reviews I read didn’t mention it. Perhaps it has something to do with the battery brand? I was supposed to put Sony A6000 on the list pero ang mahal pa. 🙁 I checked out A5000 and it is within my budget if it costs 20, 000PHP at Henry’s. 😀 I looked it up on Amazon and cheaper dun by 2, 000PHP although I think the shipping cost would even it out to its prices here in the Philippines din. With the X-A2, I think I can live with the remote-phone thing pero it’s still above my budget so it’s really just my last resort. Really leaning into the Nikon 1 J5 but I’m still kinda torn because sabi nila hindi pa madami yung lens na available for the unit.

  • Reply Jae November 9, 2016 at 5:50 pm

    Hi, I have the Sony a6000. I’ve had it for a little over a year now, and I’ve been using it mostly for travel photography (and other blog-related stuff). I was in the market for a dSLR, but ended up getting a mirrorless camera, and it didn’t disappoint. The Fujifilm ones threw me off because they didn’t have a viewfinder, which I think serves a significant purpose in taking photos. The difference in image quality was a deal-breaker, too.

    Sony recently came out with a Sony a6500, so the a6000/6300 ones may be cheaper by now. Just thought I’d share these. A shameless plug, but if you’re wondering what the quality of photos look like with Sony a6000, you may view some of them on my blog and on Instagram.

    • Reply Pia November 12, 2016 at 3:19 am

      Hi, Jae! Thank you for sharing. Yeah, I didn’t quite like that the Fujifilm ones don’t have a viewfinder. 🙁 I looked through your blog and your pictures are amazing! Totally considering Sony cameras now. <3

      • Reply Jae November 12, 2016 at 6:35 pm

        Aww thank you! If you have any questions about the a6000, let me know. 🙂

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