On the weekend, I took candid photos of friends in soft indoor evening light. The best lens for this sort of thing, speaking as a member of the Fujifilm cult, would be the awesome portrait-optimized 56mm F1.2, which has reduced many reviewers to quivering jelly. I didn’t have one of those but the pix are still OK.
That 56mm is the kind of lens I’d totally buy, except for I was at Leo’s Cameras and accidentally bought a used smc PENTAX-M 1:1.4 50mm instead, for (I think) $75. Manufactured between 1977 and 1984, it’s easy to screw onto my A.D. 2013 Fujifilm X-T1 with a cheap adapter.
Compared to the Fuji 56mm, it’s a tiny little bit wider, a tiny little bit slower, and either $700 or $1,400 cheaper, depending which Fuji flavor you get (compare the flavors at The real difference: XF56 vs XF56 APD vs FF).
Imagine how great these pictures would look if I’d spent all that extra money on a better lens, presumably one less than thirty years old.
Here’s an interesting thing: While I think the images look nice, they are fragile. I’m normally a bit heavy-handed with the Lightroom sliders, but on this batch touching almost anything threw the picture off the rails. Or it could just be the subtle skin-tone variations that don’t like being twiddled. I suppose a normal person is supposed to be pleased when he can’t seem to improve on what came out of the camera.
Now, to be fair, the old Pentax doesn’t have auto-focus or image stabilization. But the X-T1 has wonderful manual-focus aids, and the best image stabilizer is a fast shutter speed, which F1.4 makes easy.
Comment feed for ongoing:
From: Greg Lloyd (Dec 09 2014, at 06:34)
Nice! I've also become a fan of Fujifilm cameras: X-E1 with kit zoom and Leica M mount adaptor in my case.
Results with my old Summicron-M 50mm f/2 are pretty amazing, particularly since I like the 75mm short telephoto equivalent of the Summicron on the X-E1.
The Summicron isn't exactly cheap or as fast as an f/1.4, but it's not hard to find a decent bargain.