Photozone have published a review of their testing of the new wide angle fast “prime” intended to be used with fabulous X Pro1 and XE-1 compact camera / mirrorless cameras the Fujion XF 14mm F2.8 lens.
Here’s what they had to say:
Fujion XF 14mm F2.8
The Fujinon XF 14mm f/2.8 R is a highly attractive ultra-wide lens with few shortcomings. The most important factor for an ultra-wide lens is certainly image sharpness and the Fujinon delivers here. It is bitingly sharp in the image center and good to very good in the outer image region. The very low CAs contribute to the high quality perception. Distortions are basically absent – even in RAW data – which is surprising for such a wide lens and even more so for a mirrorless one. The primary weakness of the Fujinon is the very high amount of vignetting. Most RAW converters as well as the camera (JPEGs) can (mostly) compensate this automatically though. Looking at the close focus results, the bokeh is rather typical for an ultra-wide lens – it’s rather nervous – which probably originates in the aspherical design.
The build quality of the Fujinon is very high and as such in line with the other Fujifilm offerings. It’s mostly made of metal but since Fuji tried to minimize the weight it doesn’t feel as rock solid as a Leica lens for instance. However, this is mostly a subjective impression. Objectively there’s little to complain about except for the lack of weather sealing. Some users may not like the fact that it is comparatively large which is certainly true compared to a pancake lens such as the XF 18mm f/2 R. However, it is no brick either and the bigger the better in terms of potential image quality. The AF isn’t really a decisive factor for such a lens but Fuji did a good job here actually – it is both quite fast and near silent. The pricing feels a little steep but it is fair enough in relation to the high performance. Therefore also highly recommended.
There really isn’t a “weak” lens in Fuji’s XF lens line up from results I have both seen published and more particularly from what I have personally achieved in my own testing. The XF 14mm F2.8 is clearly a great lens and is a welcome additions to the growing X” system. With a telephoto lens and wide angle zoom on the horizon the Fuji “X” system is maturing nicely.
Mark Baynham (March 2013)