Fujifilm XF 50 mm f1 — What you should know before you buy
Welcome back! So today, I want to share my thoughts about the Fujifilm XF 50 mm f1 R WR lens. Fun story when I got this lens. I went to my local camera store and wanted to buy a flash. As soon as I entered the store, I saw (back then) the brand new XF 50 mm f1. It immediately caught my attention, I did a few sample shots in the store and was immediately hooked. I forgot about the flash and brought home the lens instead. I did some more sample photos at home. After a short time I came to the conclusion, I need to sell my old 56 mm f1.2 (that was before the Mark 2 version) lens because that one is never going to be used again. So here we are now, countless portrait shoots and many happy memories later.
Note: Throughout the article you’ll find lots of sample pictures which have been edited with my presets. If you’re interested, you can get them on my homepage: www.chrisperkles.at I’m not sponsored by Fujifilm, this is just my honest opinion.
So let’s start with a few facts. This lens is heavy (compared to the other Fuji lenses). It has 839 grams, has a diameter of 77 mm and is 103 mm long. It’s totally made out of metal and the lens is weather resistant.
So I’m using this lens mostly with the X-H2s + battery grip now, and before I used the X-T3 with battery grip. Since this lens is huge and heavy, a big Fujifilm Body + grip is definitely recommended. Especially for longer shoots, this is way more comfortable. I guess, using it with a X-E4 or a X-T30 is a pain in the ass. The aperture ring has a nice resistance and is around 12 mm wide, so you get a good grip.
Optical Performance & Focus
This 50 mm lens is an equivalent of 75 mm f1.5 full frame lens. The optical performance is great, the bookeh is wonderfully smooth. How it renders the subject wide open is very pleasing to the eye. The closest you can get to a subject is around 70 cm, which is not the best but ok. If you shoot against bright lights, you can notice contrast loss.
Autofocus, for such a heavy lens, is very impressive. But check out this gif video for more real life example.
The Focus ring is around 3 cm wide and is electronic. The slower you turn the ring, the more accurate you’ll get. This may be awesome for photos, but for video it’s a pain in the ass, because you can’t remember your focus pulling shots. I always prefer mechanic focus rings.
Where do I use this lens for?
I mainly use this lens for different portrait shoots, and it’s also mostly in my camera bag for events like weddings or company celebrations. Especially the big aperture makes it awesome for shoots at night or in dim lighting conditions. The amazing bookeh makes it a dreamy lens for weddings.
The Fujifilm XF 50 mm F1.0 R WR is certainly not a budget lens (1500$) and by no means a compact, lightweight lens. It doesn’t have to be, though, because its high F1 speed combined with autofocus makes it unique. No compromises have to be made in terms of build quality and robustness. Even if the autofocus isn’t the fastest or quietest, it still works precisely. However, the large closest focusing distance and the low magnification that comes with it are another compromise that has to be made. The image quality of the Fujifilm XF 50 mm F1.0 R WR is a blast. The only thing I miss on this lens is OIS.
If this lens is too expensive or too big for your taste, you may consider the XF 56mm f1.2 or the XF 50 mm f2.
If you have any questions, drop me a message on Instagram @chrisperkles or via Mail and if you like what you’ve seen, please subscribe. This would help me a lot here!