These days my zoom range is the “general purpose” 24-70mm (Olympus M.Zuiko 12-40mm F2.8 Pro), not too wide and not too long but more or less suitable for a wide range of subjects. In my 35mm days that was the Canon EF 24-70mm F2.8L. I shot for about a year with that as my only zoom lens and when I needed something wider I would rent or borrow the EF16-35 F2.8L. Both of these lenses were useful but had issues with focus accuracy and sharpness. I hear-tell Canon has released a new version of the 16-35 (it’s now a 16-35mm F4 with image stabilisation). I’ve personally used the latest version of the 24-70mm F2.8L MKII (awesome but expensive!). If you want to make images with a little something special then you need to go wider than that general purpose zoom. You need a wide angle prime lens or a wide angle zoom. I’ve previously used the excellent XF 14mm F2.8 but stuck at one focal length in that range can be limiting sometimes. I was particularly interested in the XF10-24mm Fuji lens because of an upcoming assignment which will require me to take a series of wide angle shots and combine various elements into one composite image……
I have now had the Fuji X-T1 since February of this year. I have traveled to Dubai, Morocco, Cuba, and numerous places through the US with the XT and the new 10-24mm f4, 56mm 1.2, and 27mm 2.8 pancake lenses. I’ve shot street, portraits, personal work, and paid work with this camera and these lenses. Fuji sent the camera and lenses to me and then I picked up a second body because these are now my small camera work horses. I no longer own a single piece of DSLR gear. I shoot my PhaseOne on some jobs and I shoot Fuji’s for the rest. I do not foresee going back to DSLR’s any time soon. What can I say about Fuji cameras that I haven’t said before? They have soul. They are sharp. They are a joy to work with. They are conversation starters on set. They are small. They are quiet. They are a constant companion. I never said any thing like this about my Nikon or Canon gear. Not even my Phase One. The only reason I love my Phase is because of the image quality it produces. Otherwise, the Phase One camera body is a piece of crap and I hate it. It’s an old Mamiya 645 body with a few tweaks and a new badge slapped on the front. It’s a crap camera really. Oh how I hope and wish and pray and desire for the day Fuji gets back in the medium format game. I have begged and pleaded with them to make an X series medium format game changer. PLEASE!!! …….
I wanted an ultra wide lens since I bought my little Fuji X-E1, the kit lens was a good lens overall, and while for street photography it’s definitely a great lens, for landscapes 18mm (equivalent to a 27mm on a 35mm) are not enough to me, I always felt like it was too long for me. So three weeks ago I decided to sell it in favour of a new ultra wide lens from the Korean manifacturer Samyang (or Rokinon in the States, Walimex somewhere else), the 12mm f/2 NCS CS. I generally read thousands of review before buying a lens, but in this case I couldn’t find much as this lens came out on the market just a few months ago, but the few reviews I found were all very positive, and I often read good things about Samyang lenses, so I decided to give it a try……..
I have been using the Fujifilm 27mm pancake lens for almost a year and I am yet to actually give the lens the attention or acknowledgement it deserves. The Fujifilm 27mm lens has in a sense, become my much loved ‘off duty’ lens, tending to be my go-to lens for general days out exploring. As one of Fujifilm’s least expensive lenses the 27mm is deserving of attention especially by those photographers who really want to travel light. During this year’s annual holiday I used just the X-T1 and 27mm to document days out to the beach, amusements, walks and outings, with the 27mm making the X-T1 feel more like the X100s in form factor but with the option of additional lenses. That said the Fujifilm X100s will always remain an exceptionally special camera in my mind. ….
A fast short-tele portrait lens is a “must-have” for many photographers, especially for those in the wedding and portrait industry yet for a long time, it was missing in the Fuji X Series lineup. There are third party versions, and there’s also the sharp, compact XF 60mm F2.4 but nothing made by Fuji, below the F2.0 range. As of spring 2014, that changed with the release of the XF 56mm F1.2 R lens, an optic that many have been patiently waiting for. With the crop factor taken into account, the 56mm F1.2 is approximately an 84mm equivalent, which is a preferred focal length for many portrait and wedding photographers. Its fast aperture is also prized in this type of lens both for available light photography and for creating beautiful shallow depth of field or as some refer to as “bokeh”. So far, the details sound promising but does the XF 56mm F1.2 really cut it? Is it worth its asking price of $999.00? Was it worth the wait? Let’s find out……
After posting some initial impressions the time has come for a second report. I’ve taken about 120 shots with the Zeiss 50mm Touit for some time with the Fuji X-T1 and the lens growing on me. In assessing a lens, I am not really into MTF-charts and detailed comparisons (although I read them). Others are better in doing that. My basic criterium is “do I like the lens”. To be a bit more specific: is it sharp enough? is it responsive enough? Is it comfortable to hold and use? Does it help convey what I’m trying to capture? Does the lens help me avoid (a lot of) PP? Think about color “accuracy”, vignetting, CA, etc……..
It was those numbers that initially put me off buying the Fuji XF 55-200 lens. I’d worked a lot with the Canon 70-200 MkII previously and with a constant f/2.8 aperture surely this lighter and much cheaper Fuji couldn’t compare? The purchase was made back when I still had the X-Pro1 and a trip to the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador was booked. In the end it was the 55-200 that made it a memorable visit. The lens, which felt a little awkward on the X-Pro1, stayed on the camera for almost the entire time and constantly surprised me with its razor sharp images and creamy bokeh. But it’s when I paired the lens with the X-T1 that it really began to shine. I’d already been impressed with the image stabilization on the 55-200 but combine that with the new Fuji’s constant focus and 8fps and it makes for a compelling combination…..
This lens is a really nice option if you just want to take your camera literally everywhere & not feel too serious, stand out, be obtrusive, & intimidating.. but don’t think for one minute this lens is a toy! After downsizing from a full DSLR kit carrying the XE2 + 18-55mm around you quickly get used to the size, and while it is a huge improvement you still feel the setup is not as small as you had imagined before switching to mirrorless. This tiny pancake lens transforms the whole shooting experience, & gives you confidence to take your camera everywhere……
The Fuji X-T1 is the best camera I have ever owned by far. I wrote a review of it here if you are interested. The only thing I wasn’t a huge fan of was the way it handled. There just wasn’t quite enough grip to feel comfortable holding it. The vertical battery grip helps and I use that when doing my professional work, but it made the camera just a little bit to big for everyday use. It somewhat defeated the purpose of owning a small camera in the first place. I had also owned the regular size hand grip for my X-Pro 1 and didn’t really like it either. It only was big enough for your pinky and ring finger and it just felt awkward. I then saw the announcement that Fuji released this new larger hand grip and it seemed like it would be exactly what I needed. I ordered it right away and after a couple of weeks of use, I can say it is perfect for me. It just feels right when holding the camera. It also seems to make my hand more vertical when holding the camera which significantly reduces wrist strain. It does make the camera a bit bigger and heavier but I don’t think that is all bad. A little bit of bulk makes the camera feel more substantial. Lenses like the 23mm and the 56mm fit perfectly while the 35mm and 18mm now seem a bit small. It also looks really good. It fits the look of the camera perfectly………
I do a lot of close up and macro photography and have quite a number of macro lenses, mostly Nikon, but also Canon, Sigma and Tamron. I think I can sum up this entire review right here in one sentence by saying that this Zeiss Touit 50mm f/2.8 lens is as good as, if not better than, any macro lens I have ever used on any camera.Not only is its performance top notch, it is beautifully designed and may be the best looking piece of glass you’ll put on a Fuji X-camera — well-balanced, light weight, quick to focus, and with an easy-to-find and responsive aperture ring. Its results are what you would expect from a macro lens from Zeiss. It is sharp everywhere, even in the corners, and even wide open at f/2.8. The field is flat and distortion free, just as you would want from a true macro……