Photography News issue 24

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Photography News Issue 24 absolutephoto.com

Tests

Optics round-up Lenses With new lenses coming out all the time, we take a close look at some of the very latest touting for your cash

Words by Will Cheung and Kingsley Singleton

FujifilmXF90mmF2 R LMWR £699

Specs

Price

£699

Format

Years ago, the first lens every keen photographer bought after the 35mm- standard lens was the 135mm, a good general-purpose telephoto – the focal length this Fujifilm XF90mm F2 with the 1.5x crop factor of the format equates to. It’s a useful focal length for portraits, action, scenics and more, and it has an f/2maximumaperture to help cope with less than perfect light. The lens bears a strong family resemblance to other X-series primes, with a finely machined focus barrel, an aperture ring that can be set on 0.3 EV steps and there’s an A position for fully auto operation in programmode. The lens has the WR designation so you know it is weather resistant to match the X-T1, and it’s also an LM lens whichmeans the focusing system uses a Linear Motor for speed and quietness. Linear motors are featured in other X-lenses but this is the first X-series lens to have an innovative Quad Linear Motor which uses four magnets for greater torque with faster autofocus as a result. Autofocus from infinity to minimum focusing distance takes about 0.8sec, and it’s swift, smooth

and silent. In good light there is no twitching, with the lens going through the point of sharpness and then back again in an instant. Indoors or when the light levels are low, autofocus remains responsive so long as the camera’s focus point is aimed at something within the scene with contrast or a hard edge. I shot a low- light concert with the camera set to ISO 3200 and the lens to f/2, and it worked very impressively. Optically this lens is a very fine performer capable of sharp pictures at every aperture. The central area is very sharp at f/2 and gets better from f/2.8 onwards, giving crisp, detailed images. Central image quality is high at all aperture settings and the same is true at the edges. Again, quality starts off high at the edges – although not quite as high as the centre – and the improvement with stopping down is significant at f/4 onwards. In sum, this lens is capable of critical use at every aperture which means choice of f/stop has more to do with required depth-of-field than stopping down for better quality. That’s a great situation to be in. WC

Full-frame

APS-C

Mount Fujifilm X

Construction 11 elements in 8 groups Special lens elements Three extra-low dispersion elements Coatings Super EBC Filter size 62mm Aperture range f/2-f/16 in 0.3 EV steps Diaphragm 7 blades Internal focus Yes Manual focus Yes, full-time Minimum focus 60cm Focus limiter No Maximummagnification 0.2x Distance scale No Depth-of-field scale No Image stabiliser No Tripod collar No Lens hood Supplied Weather-sealed Yes Dimensions (lxd) 105x75mm Weight 540g Contact fujifilm.eu/uk

F/4

F/5.6

How it rates

F/8

F/11

Verdict There is a lot in this lens that appeals. Its optical skills are straight out of the top drawer, the fast aperture is more than a little useful and handling including speedy autofocus is impressive. It’s not a small lens though and fixing on the supplied lens hood adds another 6cm. It’s also quite weighty, and the lack of any IS system is the only detraction. It’s not a cheap lens but it’s a brilliant, multi-purpose telephoto and one worth having in the bag.

Features IS would have given the lens top score

23/25

Performance First-rate sharpness at every aperture

24/25

F/16

F/28

Handling Works well, feels great, very smooth, big though

23/25

Value for money Not cheap, but it’s an excellent lens

23/25

A very fine performer capable of sharp pictures at every aperture

Overall This medium telephoto lens might not have universal appeal but it’s a lovely optic Pros Optical quality, 60mm close focus, full-time manual focus, fast AF Cons No IS 93/100

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