In recent days I’ve bought two new Fujifilm lenses. The choices weren’t easy and I’m far from convinced I did the right thing. Have a look and see what you think.

10-24 · Back before Christmas I bought the (take a deep breath, official name here) Fujinon XF 10-24mm F4 R OIS Wide Angle Zoom Lens. It was sort of on impulse; new job, Christmas coming, felt in the mood for a toy, stumbled across a great deal in a local camera shop.

By way of background, it’s one of the few Fujinons that’s outside the focal range of the two lenses I originally picked up back in March 2013, the 18-55mm and the 35mm F1.4.

It’s astonishingly, mind-bogglingly wide. You can stand right in front of a fair-sized tree and capture the whole thing.

In the Regina floral conservatory

In Regina’s Floral Conservatory

I’m finding it hard to get comfy with. What I really need to do is go out for a couple of photowalks with just this puppy and force myself to see the kind of picture it wants to take. But on the two or three occasions I’ve wanted to shoot something really big or that I couldn’t back away from, well, it’s just the ticket.

55-200 · Again with the official monicker: the Fujinon XF 55-200mm f:3.5-4.8 R LM OIS Zoom Lens. I actually had a good reason for this one. We’re vacationing next month in New Zealand; I’ve already bought tickets for a semi-final of the Cricket World Cup, and we also plan to take in the Turangawaewae Regatta. So, a long lens is required.

Yesterday I took it out for a spin:

Sunny Vancouver summer Sunday

This would be your canonical sunny Vancouver winter day picture down near the beach.

All these pictures are pretty well on full auto: Point, zoom, click. The little pocket cams that are now being replaced by phones were called “point-&-shoots”. Well, no, actually; A modern image-stabilized zoom with blazing-fast autofocus and massive ISO-swing tolerance: That’s a point&-shoot. For example, at these crows having a bath.

Crows bathing

Got high-contrast if ya want it.

Things don’t have to be moving to be nice telephoto targets.

moss

It does bokeh too.

Why not primes? · Well, yeah. My fave lens on the X-T1, or really that I’ve ever owned, is the groovy little 35mm er I mean Fujinon XF 35mm F1.4 R. Like Zack Arias said, this is a lens that has magic inside. And Fuji has loads of primes that make reviewers go all squishy.

Uh huh. But most of them are within the range the 18-55mm already covers unreasonably well. The 56mm F1.2 is particularly raved over, but instead of that I got a funky old Pentax 50mm F1.4 (I love those pix). The 14mm is said to be cool, but 14mm isn’t that wide. The 23mm apparently has oodles of soul, but really, it’d feel like cheating on the 35mm.

I’ll be getting some eye-rolls for picking up the 55-200mm now that Fuji is shipping this 50-140mm that’s faster and weather-sealed and generally the bee’s knees; except for it’s bigger and heavier and 50mm shorter and costs a thousand bucks more. On top of which, I still have the old Pentax 50-135 F2.8 on the shelf (see the second shot here); no autofocus with that, but hey.

Bulk · Here’s the other reason I may have gone off the rails; my whole Fuji kit could previously fit in the nice little camera bag I bought in 2008. No longer. And I sure got some pix that made me happy wandering around with just the 35mm and 18-35mm, and leaving the zoom in the bag. Figuring which lenses to take to NZ, and how to pack ’em, is gonna stress me out.

Big and small · OK, let’s finish this off with a party trick. I strolled down by the water and shot some boats at what the camera reports is 181.1mm.

Telephoto boats

Then I swapped lenses and squatted down and pointed the camera more or less the same direction, only at 10mm wide.

English Bay

That wave is like three fingers high. A pity I got my shadow on it.



Contributions

Comment feed for ongoing:Comments feed

From: g (Feb 17 2015, at 05:10)

Your second heading says "18-55" but is followed by talking about a 55-200mm lens.

(If you're checking this manually, I will not be at all offended if you don't post it. The point is just to notify you of the trivial error. My apologies if dozens of others have already done so.)

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From: Gordon Haff (Feb 17 2015, at 06:24)

Hi Tim,

I sort of did the same thing with the 10-24mm given that the 17-40mm has long been one of my standard lenses on my full-frame Canon bodies. Nice lens. (At the same time, I got something even wider for my Canon.)

So far I've resisted anything more tele than the 18-55mm. (I think you meant to have different numbers in your section header BTW.) My thinking being that, once telephotos are really needed, I'll stick with my full-frame. But I could easily see that thinking changing over time. I confess to not using my Canon nearly as much as I used to.

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From: Paul (Feb 17 2015, at 17:56)

I concur with the 35mm. I've taken some nice shots with it using my X-M1 (I can't afford the TX1 yet, particularly after purchasing the 35mm in a moment of weakness)

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