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Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR Lens Review

John Riley has been putting the Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR lens through its paces to find out if the image quality is picture-perfect.

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Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR

Fujifilm's most compact and unobtrusive lens is here, the Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR, intended for APS-C format. This equates to a “35mm equivalent” field of view around 40mm, a popular focal length that is considered a “wide standard” lens. Add an aperture ring and weather resistance and we have a lens usable in the outdoors, able to withstand all its fickle weather, even down to a freezing -10C. It looks great, so let's couple it up with the compact 26.1MP Fujifilm X-E4 body to put the lens through its paces and see what it can do.  


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Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR Handling and Features

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR

This is a compact “pancake” design and as such adds very little bulk to the X-E4 body. It weighs in at just 84g, definitely a featherweight. There is a standard 39mm filter thread and a supplied screw-in lens hood. Although this is a very small hood, it offers excellent shading. There are also two lens caps, one for the lens itself and one for the hood. 39mm is a fairly uncommon filter size, although it is used on some Leica lenses. The Fujinon protector filter for this lens costs £74.99.

The thin manual focus ring can be used to modify AF after that has locked on and is always active. Via the camera menus, the direction of travel of the ring can be reversed if desired. This could benefit those who are used to a particular traditional direction of manual focusing – one way for Nikon/Pentax and the reverse for Canon, for example. Focusing is down to 0.34m, or 13.4 inches. This is what would be expected for a standard lens of this focal length. AF is achieved using a DC motor and this acquires the point of focus very quickly and very accurately.

Fujifilm seems to make a statement with their fine aperture rings and this is no exception. It is generously prominent, affords a good grip and has slick click stops that operate very smoothly indeed. There is a click-stop for the “A” setting, used if the camera is to adjust the stop. A small button has to be depressed to release the “A” and return to using the aperture ring and it is a pity that this catch does not also prevent accidentally moving into the setting. That would mean using the aperture ring with the camera to the eye would be less prone to locking the ring in error.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 R WR
The well-engineered metal lens mount clicks firmly into place and has no excess play. The rubber seal around the mount indicates that the lens is designated WR, having weather resistance. This is a major benefit, enabling us to keep on shooting even in wet or dusty environments.

Optical construction is 7 elements in 5 groups, including 1 aspherical. The diaphragm comprises 7 blades. The lens uses Fujifilm's well established Super EBC (Electron Beam Coating) technology.

In terms of handling, the lens is elegantly simple. There is very little to adjust and what there is functions superbly well. The focal length is actually a very useful one and covers most subject matter, including street, architecture, landscape, travel and even portraiture. It makes for an ideal pocket notebook, or indeed as a street camera/lens combination, being non-threatening and discreet. The aperture ring is interesting in that some lenses work better ergonomically using the camera, some work better using the camera controls. In this case, the aperture ring was the main method of choice, although this may or may not be the case with any given camera body. It is good to have the choice.            


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