Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR Review

December 9, 2014 | Mark Goldstein | |

Introduction

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR is a new professional weather-resistant telephoto zoom lens for Fujifilm’s X-series interchangeable lens cameras.The 50-140mm F2.8 lens boasts an angle-of-view range similar to that of a 76-213mm lens in a 35mm system and features a constant maximum aperture of F2.8 throughout the range. Other highlights include the world’s first Triple Linear Motor which enables quiet and high-speed auto focus, an optical construction with 23 elements arranged in 16 groups including 5 ED lens elements and 1 Super ED lens element with low dispersion characteristics, Fujifilm’s unique HT-EBC (High Transmittance Electron Beam Coating) and Nano-GI (Gradient Index) coating technologies, seven rounded aperture blades for a smooth circular bokeh, a 1/3EV step aperture ring, minimum working distance of 1m for the entire zoom range, and 5-stop optical image stabilsation. The Fujinon XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR has a suggested retail price of £1249.99 / $1599.

Ease of Use

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR is an undeniably large and heavy telephoto lens, weiging just under 1kg and dwarfing the X-T1 camera that we tested it with. It's the largest, longest and heaviest XF lens currently available, although if you compare the 50-140mm / X-T1 combination to the Canon or Nikon equivalent, it's about 40% lighter and smaller overall. So, depending on your viewpoint, the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR marks quite a departure from the more dimunitive lenses in the XF lineup, or it's a lighter alternative to the Canon/Nikon offerings. Thankfully the length of the lens doesn't change even when it's fully zoomed out.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens attached to the Fujifilm X-T1 Graphite Silver camera

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens attached to the Fujifilm X-T1 Graphite Silver camera

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens attached to the Fujifilm X-T1 Graphite Silver camera

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens attached to the Fujifilm X-T1 Graphite Silver camera, tripod mount attached

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens attached to the Fujifilm X-T1 Graphite Silver camera, tripod mount attached

The overall build quality is excellent, in keeping with an X-series body like the X-T1, although we were a little disappointed to see that the lens barrel is mainly made of high-grade plastics, rather than being metal - still, it does at least help to keep the weight down. The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens does boast a brass mount, focus/zoom rings and lens exterior, and a non-rotating 72mm filter thread.

The zoom ring is generously wide and has a ridged, rubberised grip band. Both the zoom and the focus rings are smooth in action without being loose. Zoom creep is not an issue. The focus ring is wide enough but doesn't have any “hard stops” at either end of the focus range.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRSide of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRSide of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRSide of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRSide of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens has a traditional aperture ring on the lens barrel, which allows you to set the aperture in 1/3 steps, and unlike some of Fujfilm's other variable-aperture zoom lenses, this one is clearly marked with the 7 full aperture settings that run from f/2.8 to f/22 plus the Auto setting, and it has a hard stop at either end. The aperture ring is nicely damped and makes a distinctive click as you change the setting.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRFront of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRRear of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR has a built-in OIS (Optical Image Stabiliser) equivalent to 5 stops, which can be handily turned on and off via the dedicated OIS switch on the lens barrel.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRSide of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRSide of the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens

A metal tripod mount is supplied with the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR, which is attached to the lens via a circular ring that can be rotated from landscape to portrait orientation using a single thumbscrew on the side of the barrel. The tripod mount is rather awkardly attached to the lens via two smaller captive thumsbcrews - we say awkwardly, because while removing the mount was easy, it was incredibly difficult to re-attach it again - it's definitely something that you wouldn't want to do in a hurry. Note that the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR also lacks a threaded hole on the bottom to allow more direct mounting of a tripod or lens strap system

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens in-hand

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens with the supplied lens hood fitted

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRThe Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens with the supplied lens hood fitted

In terms of accessories, the lens ships with a large plastic petal-shaped hood and the usual cloth bag - we'd have liked a proper padded case for such a premium lens. Usefully the lens hood has a small removeable square on the bottom which makes it easier to use a circular polariser.

Focal Range

At the 50mm end of the zoom range, the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens has a wide angle of view of 31.7 degrees.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRField of view at 50mm

At the 140mm end, the angle of view narrows to 11.6 degrees.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRField of view at 140mm

Distortion

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR exhibits virtually no barrell or pincushion distortion, as you can see in the photos below.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRDistortion at 50mm

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRDistortion at 140mm

Focusing

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens has an internal focusing (IF) system with a very quiet linear motor. In practice, we found the auto-focus to be fast, almost silent and with very little hunting even in low-light. Thanks to the IF mechanism the front of the lens does not rotate on focus, which is very good news for anyone looking to use the lens in conjunction with a polariser or graduated neutral density filter.

Chromatic Aberrations

Chromatic aberrations, typically seen as purple or blue fringes along contrasty edges, are not a problem with the Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR lens, so much so that we couldn't find any examples in our test shots.

Macro

The Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR is not a macro lens. The close-focus point is at 1m from the sensor plane and the maximum magnification is 0.12x at full telephoto. The following example illustrates how close you can get to the subject, in this case a CompactFlash card.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WRClose-up performance

Bokeh

Bokeh is a word used for the out-of-focus areas of a photograph, and is usually described in qualitative terms, such as smooth / creamy / harsh etc. Fujifilm have paid attention to this aspect of lens use, employing a 7-segment diaphragm with rounded blades for pleasing bokeh. In our view, their efforts have been largely successful - see the examples below.

Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR
   
Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR

Sharpness

In order to show you how sharp this lens is, we are providing 100% crops on the following pages.

Entry Tags

review, lens, fujifilm, f2.8, fuji, telephoto, 50mm, image stabilisation, 200mm, xf, anti-shake, vibration compensation, x-series, x-t1, ois, 140mm, Fujifilm XF 50-140mm F2.8 R LM OIS WR, 50-140mm, 50-140

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