30 Minutes With The New Fujifilm 23mm f1.4
Since this lens was announced I have begged and cajoled my Fujifilm contact for a test ride to no avail. Man, I have known better crack dealers that take better care of their clients! Evidently there was a glass gag order to keep the lens under wraps until they could provide the blogosphere at large with samples. Bah I say! I have had to be content with my 12mm 2.8, 18 f2.0, and the awesome 35mm 1.4.
Now if you do the focal conversion this makes my collection of lenses the trifecta of an 18mm, 28mm and 50mm. What’s missing? Well my favorite focal length is 35mm. I little bit wider than the eye perceives, yet extremely natural. While I got used to the 18mm it was always just a tad too wide for tastes. I yearned for the 23 mm focal length.
So today I had the opportunity to grab the 23 1.4 which translates to 35mm for a fast half hour. Yup, you heard that right, it was mine! For a half hour at least. I threw my coat on and walked up 9th Ave around the corner from B&H. You can’t keep a good man from his 23mm, no matter the time constraints. Here are my findings. Oh and one more note, I pretty much shot everything wide open at f 1.4 because that’s how I roll. I love bokeh, and this lens as you can see delivers spectacular bokeh.
It’s a bit of large lens, but then again, it’s a 1.4 so who can complain. It has a depth of field scale. Lots of you young’ probably don’t know what that is in the age of digital zoomy slacker glass. It’s a scale that tells you what will be in focus based upon the f-stop. A analog scale. Sweet.
Very nice to shoot manual focus, you pull the lens back to you and then you access to that DOF scale and it has a good feel, a little loosey goosey, but still better than other AF lenses. I confess, I shot in AF during my short test. I don’t have any problems with the XPro1’s focus.
I’m like Goldilocks, 18 mm to wide, 50 mm to tight, but 35 mm… just right.
I’m sorry if I didn’t have the time to really put the lens through a more thorough test in different light with more varrying apertures. Truth is, I was just happy to get the short time I had with it. Am I getting one? Yea. Not tomorrow though. I will have to get used to the size, I like to keep it on the smaller tighter side, but dang, I do love me the 35mm effective focal length. I think that this lens will be the lens that sits on the camera 96% of the time once I own it.
Hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did shooting it.
Very cool photos Dave.
I share your love of the focal length. And I love the fuji fast primes. So I know I will want to walk around with two bodies outfitted with different focal length lenses like in my old photojournalism days. I, too have an x pro 1. My unresolved issue is – do I want to get an XE2 and the new 23mm lens, or an X100S that offers the same focal length plus a leaf shutter, but obviously without the flexibility of other focal lengths? What’s an X-trans lover to do?
A dilemma for sure, I’d go XE2 though, more versatile.
Any word on when the lens will be available?
They are shipping now, back orders are slowly getting filled.
I am loving the x100 35mm. Hated the loud 35mm on the Canon 5d.
First photo, “Best of the West Deli Man,” is AWESOME! Love it!
Great pics David, your enthusiasm shows.
I called this : Temptation !!
[…] The Fujifilm 23mm 1.4, and now there is no reason to shoot with any other camera. It’s fast, it’s super sharp, and […]