Fuji Lens favourites – part one

Fuji Lens favourites – part one

Cameras are all personal choice, a magic box…., but it’s the glass that really counts.

The lenses are probably one of the biggest reasons to influence your choice of camera system.

  • As much as you love your current DSLR or mirrorless body, in a few years, you’ll no doubt be using the upgraded model, but you’ll probably still be shooting with some or all of the same lenses that you started with.

Sure, over the years, you may add some new glass and modify your kit, but in general, most photographers don’t upgrade lenses nearly as often as they do cameras. Having moved from a collection of Nikon glass that developed and changed to my shooting style and work over many years, I’m pretty sure most photographers will tell you they have a “favourite lens, one that is always to hand…

During the last year, I’ve have moved rather rapidly to using Fuji gear. I’m using the X-T2 as my main camera for everything now, and last year, I shot quite a bit with the X-T1. Having experimented with a variety of the different XF lenses on a wide variety of subject matter, I’ve come to realize that Fuji is as serious about their lenses as they are about their cameras, and behind this you have the historic passion Fuji have shown for all things optical and lens orientated, just how many TV / Cine productions have been captured using Fujinon lenses on the front of the camera array?

Although mirrorless gear sometimes has the stigma that it’s not quite as “serious” as DSLR gear, make no mistake: this is downright serious quality glass here, and the awesome XF 50-140mm f/2.8 fast weather sealed tele zoom proves that Fuji has come to the table with some big and very serious guns. These are truly great lenses, and after trying out a number of their models, I’ve narrowed down some of the Fuji XF lenses I like the best for my style of photography.

Number One: The Fujinon XF 50-140mm f/2.8 OIS WR zoom makes the top of this list. Period.

Any serious Fuji shooter who came from DSLRs and who used to rely on a Nikon or Canon 70-200 f/2.8 zoom should get this lens. It’s a truly amazing piece of glass. Nothing more to say, it provides the same focal length as a 75-210 on a full frame dslr.

Number Two:            The Fujinon XF 23mm 1.4R.

A fixed prime with an image field of view matching the sweet 35mm that used to grace my Nikons. This was one of “the” reasons I loved the initial move over to Fuji, stunningly sharp, superb AF, yes it’s a beast, but I could shoot all day with this on one camera body and never struggle to create images that excite.

 

 

Camera & Lens Comparison tests

Camera & Lens Comparison tests

Well, today a little dull and overcast in the Scottish Borders, so I set a little challenge,

I managed to capture a few frames using different cameras and lenses, and I post them here unedited for your enjoyment….

I will only divulge that after capture they have not been edited, and have only been cropped to 3000px on the longest edge and saved as a jpeg to allow uploading.

Updates later as to the lenses and set up

wide landscapes

wide landscapes

Recently I have been taking the chance to test out the Fuji in lots of different situations, and the area way out of my normal, but recently having had some workshops on panoramic and landscape images

The lenses used Fuji XF 10-24/4 and a Samyang 8mm Fisheye F2.8 II on a Fuji X-T2

Captured in Selkirk showing the new Flood prevention field at Philiphaugh, taken on Fuji XF 10-24/4 while the view from the Golf course was on the Samyang 8mm Fisheye F2.8 II.

Firstly the Fuji XF 10-24/4 not a “pro spec” lens but optically it’s a stunning lens to use , even when wide open. The field of view is similar to that of a 15-36 on full frame sensor cameras, and it is a compact and light lens to use, possibly lacking in the ƒ2.8 aperture I would like to see, but holding out hope with the guys at Fuji HQ.

Now the Samyang 8mm Fisheye F2.8 II, this is the only non fuji lens to be found in my kit, firstly i believe in using brand lenses, but more importantly this lens is probably that specialist, that I doubt it will appear on the Fuji lens roadmap. It reminds me of the Nikon 16mm/2.8 fisheye, optically it is a sweet lens and probably best at ƒ5.6 or ƒ8

In use, anything other than extreme close images, i.e. minimum focus is 35cm, but its focus scale (manual focus by the way) is at infinity from about 1m, so you can set it there and leave it, shooting on X series it requires the camera set to allow it to shoot without lens as there is no electronic data transfer from lens to body. I find it a great lens giving alternative views, it can be overdone, but in the right situation it can make a strong image.

The pano images where cropped to 3:1 after edit in camera raw.

Fuji XF 10-24/4
Fuji XF 10-24/4
Fuji XF 10-24/4
Samyang 8mm Fisheye F2.8 II
Samyang 8mm Fisheye F2.8 II
BT Premiership rugby

BT Premiership rugby

A week on from the RBS6Nations victory for Scotland against Ireland at BT Murrayfield, it was a huge shift in venue, but the rugby was much more physical.

The conditions would have suited ducks better. This was a chance to experience the Fuji X-T2 in the wet, and poor light of February and on top of that, a premiership ground, lacking the illumination normally found at an International.

For the technical, Auto ISO set to max out at 6400,  the shutter speed on the bodies set at 1/1000th,  the Fuji XF 50-140/2.8 giving me a working iso of 2000, but with the slower Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6 the iso was almost always pegged at 6400, oh Fuji where are your plans for a fast prime lens for sports photography ? Either 200/1.8 or 300/2 or push the boat and build both i am happy to test….

Anyway a few images to enjoy from today.

11.Feb.2017. Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick, UK.
BT Premiership
Hawick vs Gala RFC at Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick.
Grant Huggan (Hawick) clears the ball from the grasp of the Gala defence, during the local derby match at Mansfield Park, Hawick.
Final Score Hawick 16 – Gala 6, the scoreline seeing Gala relegated from the Premiership
Photo: Rob Gray (07970 836 888)
11.Feb.2017. Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick, UK.
BT Premiership
Hawick vs Gala RFC at Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick.
Final Score Hawick 16 – Gala 6, the scoreline seeing Gala relegated from the Premiership
Photo: Rob Gray (07970 836 888)
11.Feb.2017. Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick, UK.
BT Premiership
Hawick vs Gala RFC at Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick.
Final Score Hawick 16 – Gala 6, the scoreline seeing Gala relegated from the Premiership
Photo: Rob Gray (07970 836 888)
11.Feb.2017. Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick, UK.
BT Premiership
Hawick vs Gala RFC at Hawick RFC, Mansfield Park, Hawick.
Ross Gibson (Hawick) wins the lineout ball, keeping it out of reach of Gala. Heavy conditions suited the Green Machine.
Final Score Hawick 16 – Gala 6, the scoreline seeing Gala relegated from the Premiership
Photo: Rob Gray (07970 836 888)
Landscape with the Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6

Landscape with the Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6

The Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6 works well as a interim sports lens, hoping the Fuji are working on the next stage and will be bringing the much needed sports lens to the timeline.

One thing that is for sure is the lens is a lot more versatile than at first glance, todays post looks at its use as a landscape lens.

All images with Fuji X-T2 and the Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6minimal post capture processing in Ps Camera Raw

Fuji at RBS6N

Fuji at RBS6N

RBS 6 Nations 2017

Scotland vs Ireland, BT Murrayfield, Edinburgh 4th February 2017

” I Was There……

Along with a near capacity crowd, the atmosphere as always a buzz of excitement, with me Jeff Carter Fuji X Ambassador,

letting me enjoy the pleasure of shooting with the Fuji XT2 and the stunning Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6.

The day was to be a good one with hospitality from the start, the prospect of some interesting rugby, and a weather forecast promising a touch of sun later in the afternoon.

The sun did shine indeed…..

I post a couple of images from the day just showing what the XT2 is capable of, the only lacking item in the Fuji Sports photographers arsenal A FAST PRIME TELE, Sorry Fuji, this is becoming a MUST HAVE

Not just to help with the iso setup, but the background isolation is a big issue, please can I have a fixed fast aperture lens. I will even test one for FREE.

Stuart Hogg with a classic airborne dive over the try line to give him his second try and earn him Man of the Match in his side’s defeat of the Irish 27-22, While the lower image shows the tackle on Alex Dunbar.

Date: 04/02/2017
Time: 14:47:40
Model: Fuji X-T2
Lens (mm):Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6 @ 100mm
ISO: 3200
Aperture: 5.6
Shutter: 1/1000
Date: 04/02/2017
Time: 16:05:24 
Model: Fuji X-T2
Lens (mm):Fuji XF 100-400/4.5-5.6 @ 218.7mm
ISO: 3200
Aperture: 5
Shutter: 1/1000

 

 

Fuji Journey (Part 2)

Fuji Journey (Part 2)

Yesterday I gave an insight into some of the reasoning behind my move to Fuji X.

Today it is about what the Fuji X system gives me in addition to the aforementioned benefits.

The lightness, the ability to visualise in the wonderful EVF, what I have already imagined in my mind, allowing me to create more.

The range of lenses has brought me back to almost where I started, a set of prime glass that is so sharp and a joy to use.

My photography started as a child, with a camera and a 50mm lens, and my second lens a 70-200, before dropping the 50 in lue of a 35mm and this became a favourite lens.

This has been given back to me in the form of the Fuji XF 23/1.4, which when coupled with the XT1 or now the XT2 gives me a very versatile combination.

This may be added to later with a 16/1.4, but my Fuji X has returned some of the passion in my photography.

Given the choice of only one lens to use as a walkabout, the XF 23/1.4 is my go to glass.

 

But todays image is from the stunning XF 50-140/2.8, this is the Fuji equivalent to a 70-200.

Model: X-T1
Lens (mm): 80.4 
—–
ISO: 200
Aperture: 2.8
Shutter: 1/500

Fuji G.A.S. – the move from Nikon

Fuji G.A.S. – the move from Nikon

Less than 12 months ago I was a total dedicated Nikon user,

Everything from 16mm fisheye thru to a 400/2.8 the 200-400/4 and all the best of Nikon’s 2.8 or 1.4 lenses.

All matched to the Nikon D4S as well as a tasty collection of SB900 speedlights and the amazing WT5 wireless transmitters.

Then after having had a Fuji Xpro1, a birthday gift from a landmark celebration the year before ( yeah I was getting old !).

Things in photography had changed, the amount of work I was doing for National Press, was changing into a nice selection of corporate clients.

Nikon’s next flagship on the horizon the D5, but this wee Fuji X system from the East had caught my eye, thanks to the work of Jeff Carter and John Rourke,

both amazing photographers that had moved to the Fuji and were capturing some amazing action and corporate imagery from the WEC and ELMS motorsports championships

as well as Jeff working on some amazing landscape work.

The seed was sown, after a few facebook messages to Jeff in Dunbar and various phone calls, a visit to see him and have a proper chat on the cards.

the costs involved in the impending upgrade to the D5 ….. £10800 just for the bodies, not forgetting the WT6 update, and possible a nice wee lens in there.

It was going to be serious expense, then theX-T1 grabbed my attention.

yes it’s a cropped sensor camera ! so what, yes it weighs in at a fraction of the D4S 0r D5, it has access to some of the best-made lenses

I have used in a good while and the cost !! well I could for the price of one D5 buy 3 Fuji XT1 bodies with grips and still have a few pounds left for spare batteries!

Would my clients notice….. more tomorrow, but tonight I leave you with an image of the gear that has changed me.