At this point I have decided to replace the HS20 with a XA1 twin lens kit. It is a little smaller than I would like and it is a twin lens camera, but the feedback from users and reviewers has been outstanding.
To help with the smaller grip I will invest in a Hand Grip HG-XE1. ( Scroll down to the middle of the page.)
While the decision has been made there is a caveat, I will wait until reports from Photokina are announced to see if Fuji has indeed decided to step up their game and introduce a 1″ sensor bridge camera. Now that would be something. As it stands the new breed (Sony & Panny ) bridge cameras while very well specified will fall outside the upper limit for a new camera, just as the XS1 did.
I’m able to get at todays prices a XA1 twin lens kit from a local supplier for $800.00 NZD. Depending upon announcements at Photokina this price may well drop further and I’m tempted to wait until the Xmas specials start coming out to see what happens to the pricing. There’s a couple of extra bits of kit I would like so if the XA1 does have a price drop that would be nice. However at the current price this is a very good buy for anyone wanting a first class camera.
I’m going for the Silver black look. It has a nice retro style appearance and looks like a small XE1/2. The XA1 is available as a twin lens kit from JustWow For $800.00 NZD, making it a pretty good option for those wanting to step up a little without huge outlay. You do have to order this kit as its not currently listed on their website. I emailed them a few days ago and got a reply back the same day so these folks are onto it. They come well recommend by Pricespy users, and given the speed of their reply I have no reservations about dealing with these folk. Add to that they are a New Zealand based company is all the better.
I’f your not wholly convinced of the XA1 here’s some info that may help. I generally don’t put a lot of stock in reviews, however these have helped in my decision.
Imaging Resource article These guys are some of the very few reviewers I place any stock in.