How do you justify f/1.4 Fuji primes?

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Banderras Regular Member • Posts: 220
How do you justify f/1.4 Fuji primes?
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As I try to justify buying the f/1.4 primes myself I can not disregard the FF alternatives.

Alternative one - FF f/1.4 primes:

1. similar price (or cheaper!!!) options for one stop "faster" glass:

e.g. (1) excellent sigma 20,24,35,50mm f/1.4 are around €800, 85mm f1.4 is still cheaper than fujinon 56mm f/1.2,

e.g. (2) even batis 85mm is 1000€,

2. more consistent AF performance of the sigma art line compared to the mixed bag of AF motors in the fujinon lineup,

3. similar if not better optical performance of the sigma art line,

4. fujinons are obviously smaller, but for one - does 30-40mm really make that much difference, and two - there are f/2.8 FF zooms.

Alternative two - FF f/2.8 zooms:

1. similar price (or cheaper!!!) options for more versatile but one stop "slower" glass:

e.g. (1) tamron 28-75 f/2.8 is just €799. Granted it's not stellar in the corners, but it has range and price and great center to edge performance,

e.g. (2) native 24-70 f/2.8 zooms are in €2K range with stellar optical quality. Buy two or three fujinon primes (as I would certainly do) and you are spending same or more,

2. undoubted versatility of zooms,

3. similar size and weight if you take more than one prime, gaining only one stop in DoF advantage and loosing a lot of versatility of a zoom.

Looking at the bodies - nikon z6 is ca €2k, sony a7rII is ca €1700, a7III is ca €2k. Fuji X-T3 is €1499.

I think for uncontrolled light photography the DoF is an important tool for photographing people in casual situations, and I have come to a realization that DoF effect scaling is not linear. With every aperture stop from wide to closed, the difference is less visible. E.g. the difference between f/8 and f/16 (yeah even 2 stops!) is negligible at half body/full body portrait distances. This bit is obvious. The not obvious thing is, for me, f/4 on APSc is already beyond usable DoF control range. At this point I do not see the advantage over compacts or bridge cameras, where everything is in focus, so why bother. APSC f/2.8 zooms are every bit as bulky and pricey as their FF alternatives. APSC primes are not far off the FF f2.8 zooms (see reasoning above) and you have to switch lenses all the time, or carry multiple bodies at which point the size and price factor is not in favor of APSC. Else you have to loose shooting opportunities while changing lenses or switching cameras.

So, is this a question that you ask yourself when investing in new gear and how do you answer it?

 Banderras's gear list:Banderras's gear list
Fujifilm X-E1 Fujifilm XF 10-24mm F4 R OIS
Fujifilm X-T3 Nikon Z6
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