Fujifilm XF 8mm F3.5 R WR Review
If you only ever use the wide end of ultra-wide-angle zooms, then the new XF 8mm F3.5 R WR prime lens makes a lot of sense - it's much smaller, lighter and crucially a lot cheaper than the comparable XF 8-16mm F2.8 R LM WR or XF 10-24mm F4 R OIS WR optics, without forgetting to deliver on both image and build quality.
The XF 8mm certainly fits the bill as an everyday, carry-everywhere ultra-wide-angle lens, proving to be be perfectly at home mounted on the relatively small X-S20 camera body that we tested it with. You simply won't notice either its tiny weight or diminutive dimensions, making it a great option for travel and landscape photography and videography where every gram counts.
In terms of image quality, the XF 8mm is razor-sharp throughout its aperture range in the centre of the image, and acceptably sharp from f/5.6 onwards at the edges.
Vignetting is there but not too much of an issue and chromatic aberrations are only noticeable by their almost complete absence. Barrel distortion is also very well controlled in the JPEG files which are auto-corrected by the camera body. The uncorrected RAW files displays much more distortion. although that isn't at all unusual for such a wide-angle lens.
The close-focus point of 18cm comes in handy when including foreground interest in the image, as you often do in landscape and architectural photography, while it is still possible to creatively throw the background out of focus using the maximum F3.5 aperture.
The Fujifilm XF 8mm F3.5 R WR's linear-motor-driven auto-focus system is satisfyingly fast and quiet. As with most Fujifilm lenses, it features a very welcome aperture ring which makes it quick, easy and precise to set this key element of exposure, especially as the aperture values are marked on the lens (unlike the XF 10-24mm).
Best of all, the price tag of £799.99 / $799.95 is more palatable than the asking prices of either the 10-24mm and particularly the 8-16mm zooms, allowing you to dip your toe in the world of ultra-wide-angle photography without having to break the bank, especially as it accepts sensibly sized front filters.
|Ratings (out of 5)|
|Value for money||4.5|