Fujifilm Global: Fujifilm releases “FUJINON LENS XF16mmF2.8 R WR”

http://www.fujifilm.com/news/n190214_02.html

“Fujifilm releases “FUJINON LENS XF16mmF2.8 R WR”
– Compact lens with fast AF performance, weighing just 155g, for casual snapshots and landscape photography
– Exceptional image sharpness, dust and weather resistant, and capability of operating at temperatures as low as -10°C
– Wide-angle lens in the Compact Prime series of interchangeable lenses for the X Series

February 14, 2019

FUJIFILM Corporation (President: Kenji Sukeno) has announced that a compact and lightweight wide angle lens, “FUJINON LENS XF16mmF2.8 R WR” (XF16mmF2.8 R WR), will join the lineup of interchangeable lenses for the X Series of digital cameras, renowned for their outstanding image quality based on the company’s proprietary color reproduction technology. The new lens has the maximum aperture value of F2.8 and focal length of 16mm (equivalent to 24mm in the 35mm film format), delivering edge-to-edge sharpness. Stylishly designed and weighing just 155g, the lens boasts high-speed AF performance, making it ideal for casual snapshots and landscape photography. The XF16mmF2.8 R WR’s black color will be released in late March 2019, and its silver color is due to be released in May 2019.

The XF16mmF2.8 R WR is a wide angle lens that consists of 10 lens elements in 8 groups, including two aspherical lens elements, to effectively control field curvature and spherical aberration for an advanced level of image sharpness across the frame. It is capable of drawing out the full performance of Fujifilm’s proprietary X-Trans™ CMOS sensor*. Its inner-focus AF system** uses a stepping motor*** to drive the focusing group of lens elements for silent and fast autofocus. Furthermore, the compact lens weighs just 155g. This means the total weight of a camera system comes to only 538g when this lens is mounted on the FUJIFILM X-T30 mirrorless digital camera (X-T30), also announced today, promising exceptional portability.

Metal parts are used extensively on the exterior to achieve a stylish look that gives a sense of premium quality and robustness. The aperture ring and focus ring have been designed for optimum operability and user comfort. The lens is also dust and weather resistant, and operates at temperatures as low as -10°C, accommodating a wide variety of shooting conditions.

Fujifilm has been promoting compact and lightweight fixed-focal-length lenses as the “Compact Prime” series, which include stylish models such as the “FUJINON LENS XF23mmF2 R WR” (XF23mmF2 R WR), “FUJINON LENS XF35mmF2 R WR” (XF35mmF2 R WR) and “FUJINON LENS XF50mmF2 R WR” (XF50mmF2 R WR). The series allow users to enjoy snapshots casually, thereby further expanding the appeal of the X Series.

X-Trans is a trademark or registered trademark of FUJIFILM Corporation. With a highly-aperiodic proprietary color filter array, the sensor minimizes moiré effects and false colors without the use of an optical low-pass filter.

**An AF system that moves relatively small lens elements in the middle or at the rear for focusing without moving the front group, which consist of relatively large lens elements
***A type of motor that rotates only at a fixed angle in response to an electrical pulse signal, making it capable of precision positioning.

1. Product features

(1) Advanced image resolution

The lens consists of 10 elements in 8 groups, including two aspherical lens elements. The aspherical lens elements are controlled at high precision to reduce field curvature and spherical aberration, resulting in an advanced level of image sharpness across the frame and drawing out the full performance of Fujifilm’s proprietary X-Trans™ CMOS sensor. The lens is also capable of close-ups with the minimum working distance of just 17cm.

(2) Compact, lightweight and stylish design for superior operability

The compact lens weighs just 155g, keeping the total weight of a camera to only 538g when it is mounted on the X-T30 mirrorless digital camera for excellent portability. It also measures only 45.4mm long.

The extensive use of metal parts on the exterior achieves a stylish look that gives a sense of premium quality and robustness, similar to the XF23mmF2 R WR, XF35mmF2 R WR and XF50mmF2 R WR.

The aperture ring and focus ring have just the right amount of clicking and torque for ease of use.

(3) Fast and silent autofocus

The lens uses the inner-focus AF system that drives smaller and lighter focusing elements. It uses a stepping motor, known for its silent operation and precise control, to achieve fast and silent autofocus.

(4) Advanced weather resistance will withstand a wide variety of shooting conditions

The lens barrel, sealed at 9 locations makes the lens dust and weather resistant and capable of operating at temperatures as low as -10°C.

Mounting it on weather-sealed mirrorless digital cameras such as X-Pro2, X-T2, X-T3 and X-H1 allows you to shoot in light rain or a dusty environment outdoors with peace of mind.

<Optional accessories>

“PRF-49” protection filter and “FLCP-49” front lens cap

Together with the launch of the XF16mmF2.8 R WR, Fujifilm is releasing the PRF-49 protection filter and the FLCP-49 front lens cap compatible with Φ49mm filter diameter….”

fujinon_xf16mmf2.8_r_wr_01_1024px
Fujifilm Fujinon XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR prime lens, with lens hood.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR

Commentary

I first came across the news that Fujifilm would be adding a 16mm prime lens to its “Fujicron” fast, small prime lens range at Fuji Rumors, and was a little dismayed.

Was Fujifilm pulling a fast one by releasing this lens instead of the updated 18mm that documentary photographers and photojournalists had been requesting for ages now, and that had been reported as “in the works”?

Since putting Fujifilm’s current 18mm prime lens to a thorough test with documentary and street photography subjects, I have been hoping beyond hope that Fujifilm will at least produce a “Fujicron” 18mm lens if not a manual clutch focusing 18mm lens in the same style as its excellent, professional-quality XF 14mm f/2.8 R, XF 16mm f/1.4 R and XF 23mm f/1.4 R prime lenses.

Fujifilm’s “Fujicron” compact prime lens collection was so named by Fujifilm customers rather than the company itself for their loose resemblance to Leica’s M-System M-Lenses for the company’s M rangefinder cameras.

My documentary photography and photojournalism style and methods were the product of relying for many years on Leica rangefinder cameras and a set of Leica Summicron-M and Elmarit-M lenses, and the rangefinder way of seeing and shooting is the one with which I remain most comfortable, working fast and efficient in available light and darkness.

leica_summilux+_lineup_21-90mm_square_1920px_80pc
Leica worked out the best prime lens focal length line-up for documentary photography and photojournalism in 35mm years ago and it remains the benchmark and role model for other lens makers to this very day. The only focal length missing from this lens collection is 40mm, which Leica made for the Leica CL rangefinder camera which was later taken over by Minolta as the Minolta CLE with 40mm standard lens as well as a 28mm and 90mm lens. Too many contemporary lens makers leave out 28mm and 75mm lenses and their equivalents for other sensor formats. Why? Both these focal lengths are the most essential for documentary photography and photojournalism.

My preferred documentary photography and video prime lens focal lengths in APS-C and their 35mm equivalents are:

  • 14mm – equal to 21mm
  • 18mm – equal to 28mm
  • 23mm – equal to 35mm
  • 27mm – equal to 40mm
  • 50mm – equal to 75mm

My practice when covering events is to carry two prime lenses mounted on two camera bodies, with my preferred focal length combination being 18mm and 50mm – in 35mm sensor terms, 28mm and 75mm.

I don’t have either of those prime lens focal lengths for my Fujifilm cameras and my current set of three Fujinon lenses predate the “Fujicron” compact prime concept, so I rely on a suboptimal set of otherwise terrific prime lenses instead.

Their 23mm, 27mm and 56mm focal lengths are not a perfect fit for my long-standing documentary photography methods so I usually default to just the 23mm lens, or bring a Panasonic Micro Four Thirds camera with me, equipped with a Panasonic compact or Olympus pro-quality zoom lens, in order to add the equivalent of 18mm and 75mm to my kit.

Fujifilm’s compact primes are particularly well-suited to its X-Pro2 digital rangefinder camera as well as its small DSLR-style and rangefinder-style cameras.

The X-Pro2’s optical viewfinder aka OVF is designed for focal lengths from 18mm through to 56mm, and benefits from short lenses with narrow front diameters to avoid jutting too much into the OVF’s field of view.

Wider and longer lenses can be used with the X-Pro2’s electronic viewfinder aka EVF though it is not up to the standard set by, say, the X-T3’s EVF.

My preferred event documentary prime lens pair of 18mm and 50mm is based on the distances I can easily maintain from my subjects in a crowd while depicting enough information in order to tell the story.

I am currently editing images shot in a dense crowd in poor light with my 23mm and 56mm lenses on an X-T3, and am constantly wishing I had a pair of 18mm and 50mm fast-focussing, wide maximum aperture, prime lenses instead.

I have tried out the Fujinon XF 50mm f/2.0 R WR and have been impressed with its image quality and autofocusing speed.

Now we need Fujifilm to come to the party with, say, a Fujinon XF 18mm f/1.4 manual clutch focusing lens optimized for pro video and stills photography, or at the very least a Fujinon XF 18mm f/2.0 (or f/2.8) R WR “Fujicron” compact prime.

Links

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Clicking on the links below and purchasing through them or our affiliate accounts at B&H Photo Video, SmallRig or Think Tank Photo helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled’.

  • FUJIFILM X-Pro2 Mirrorless Digital CameraB&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 14mm f/2.8 R Lens – B&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 16mm f/1.4 R WR Lens – B&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR LensB&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 18mm f/2 R LensB&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 23mm f/2 R WR LensB&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 35mm f/2 R WR LensB&H
  • FUJIFILM XF 50mm f/2 R WR LensB&H
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