Do Fujinon XF F1.2 and F1.4 prime lenses need a 'revamp'?

Started 2 months ago | Polls thread
OP lélé Regular Member • Posts: 437
Re: Do Fujinon XF F1.2 and F1.4 prime lenses need a 'revamp'?

John Gellings wrote:

  1. lélé wrote:

John Gellings wrote:

lélé wrote:

John Gellings wrote:

lélé wrote:

Even if I love my Fujinon primes lenses, I think some of them scream for a 'revamp'. In particular the XF 56mmF1.2 R whose optical quality is good but not great (bokeh is not very nice at the widest apertures) and it's AF motorization not suited for continuous AF, or the XF35mmF1.4 R which has a very nice rendering full open but may be better corrected and suffers from the same outdated AF motorization.

It is not the lens' fault... concentrate on photography, not lenses.

1. This is a gear sub-forum.

2. This is not the photographer's fault if the out-of-focus discs of the Fujinon XF 56mmF1.2 R looks like this:

(Source: OpticalLimits)

That's rather good, but the outlining effect at 'larges' apertures can be distracting IMO. Especially with such la ens for which a silky smooth bokeh might be a major buying point.

Some 85mm f/1.8 full frame lenses perform better in this regard, for similar price and weight. Do not be mistaken, I do think that it is quite an achievement that Fujifilm was able to design and produce a 'true' 85mm f/1.8 equivalent for an APS-C sensor. Kudos to them for that!

Of course, as a photographer:

  • The bokeh won't make a good (or bad) image.
  • I can stop down a bit to reduce the outlining effect.
  • I can be more picky about the background and avoid bright highlights.
  • I can just live with that (and that's OK ).
  • I could buy the APD version, but apparently (I do have the non-APD version so I can only rely on reviews and user opinions here) it inherits some of the non-APD outlining effects...cost more and has specific drawbacks.

That said, I would consider an improvement to have more even out-of-focus discs.

3. Have you ever compared the continuous autofocus performances of the Fujinon XF 56mmF1.2 R to a more 'modern' lens? (Including the ones from Fujifilm.) It's not exactly brillant...

Who is your audience? Who do you thInk is looking at minute details in the bokeh and not the subject of the photo? I would think only other pixel peepers would care. People do not go to museums and galleries to look at bokeh.

I agree on that point.

The most important thing will always be the photograph (and the subject), not the technical aspects.

But that does not mean these technical aspects are insignificant. Should it be the case, we would all be shooting with or smartphone or cheap lenses.

There is probably a good 'in-between', that depends on each photographers budget and requirements.

what are you photographing with this specialized lens that you require fast tracking? Perhaps there is a better alternative? Have you ever tried the Canon 85mm 1.2? Fast lenses like this have a lot of glass to move.

I think the comparison with the Canon EF 85mm f/1.2 L is not appropriate. The Fujinon XF 56mmF1.2 R is not a 85mm f/1.2 full frame equivalent; it's a 85mm f/1.8 full frame equivalent.

That is true, but is it a more complicated lens to make than the 1.8 models?

I'm no lens designer, so I don't know what is more difficult. (One should deal with higher resolution (for similar output size) and relative aperture, the other with larger area to cover...)

In any case, I guess that XF 56mmF1.2 R was not an easy lens to design and do consider it as a great achievement. We would probably have seen many other lenses like it before if it was so easy...

Nevertheless, as a photographer I am also 'result oriented'. It is very interesting to discuss and try to understand the design choices (I like that a lot), but in the end I would go for whatever fulfill my requirement the best. Should it be a 85mm f/1.8 and a FF sensor or a 56mm f/1.2 on an APS-C sensor, that's not the major criterion for me.

The iris diameter of the Fujinon is about the same as a 85mm f/1.8. It has much less glass to move than the Canon!

What kind of subjects?
The first ones would be my 5 an 6 years old children. I like 'posed portrait', but I also like to capture portraits when they are playing, running, laughing, moving their heads, etc. The combination of continuous autofocus and eye AF is phenomenal for that!
With the X-T3 and the XF 56mmF1.2 R I lost a lot of opportunities. I don't see myself buying the XF 50mmF2 WR just for that purpose (and I would probably miss a lot the extra aperture).
With the Sony A7III and the FE 85mm f/1.8 (which has to move the same amount of glass ), it works just well. Problem is that I like the Fujifilm ergonomics much better. And since I do not do photographs as professional, but for my own pleasure, this is something that I value a lot

i understand and thank you for the info.


A refreshed XF 56mF1.2 R with LM motors (or some other snappier AF motors) would end the dilemma.

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Nikon D300 Sony a7 III Fujifilm X-T3 Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G ED-IF +11 more
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