Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R Review
The Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R offers a classic focal length and an ultra-fast aperture, making it well-suited to street and reportage photography. Optically it's also a great lens in its own right, with virtually nothing to complain about apart from the price.
The Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R lens is remarkably sharp in both the image centre and edges virtually throughout the entire aperture range. The fast maximum aperture of f/1.4 makes it incredibly easy to creatively throw the background out of focus, with the seven-blade iris diaphragm achieving some lovely bokeh effects. Vignetting is practically a non-issue, and chromatic aberrations are present but well-controlled. There is no barrel distortion worth mentioning. The close-focus point of 28cm comes in handy when including a foreground interest in the image, as you often do when taking close-up street photos.
The auto-focus system is the Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R's minor weak-point, with a slight delay before locking focus and a rather loud mechanism. On the plus side it offers a generously wide focusing ring, a very welcome aperture ring which makes it quick, easy and precise to set this key element of exposure, and an innovative focus collar for quickly switching between auto an manual focus, the latter coming complete with a focusing distance scale with depth-of-field markings that makes it easier to zone-focus. The lens mount is made of metal and, thanks to an internal focusing (IF) system, the front element and filter thread do not rotate on focus, which is very good news for those using polarisers and ND grads on a regular basis.
Perhaps the only real fly in the ointment is the price - at around £849.99 / $899.95 this isn't exactly a cheap lens. Compared to a similarly specced DSLR lens with an equally fast aperture, however, it could be viewed as something of a bargain. In summary the Fujifilm XF 23mm F1.4 R is another very high-quality optic in the XF lens range and definitely worthy of our Highly Recommended award.
|Ratings (out of 5)|
|Value for money||4|