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DPRTV Fujifilm XF23mmF1.4 R WR LM Review (vs original 23mm): “Outstandingly Sharp” but Only Fujifilm X-H2 Will Unlock Its Full Potential

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DPReviewTV is pretty impressed with the brand new Fujifilm 23mm f1.4 WR LM. They also compare it to Fujifilm’s original 23mm F1.4 to see how they compare.

Btw. the original XF23mmF1.4 was a spectacular performer at the recent wedding I photographed. So the true challenge for Fujifilm was to improve something that is already really good, and it looks like they succeeded with it.

Moreover, keep in mind that we don’t see the real sharpness potential of any of the latest Fujinon lenses, as those will be visible only as soon as the 40 megapixel Fujifilm X-H2 hits the market in 2022.

Summary

  • brand new optical formula over the older 23
  • slightly larger and heavier than the old 23
  • weather sealing
  • filter size is actually a bit smaller than the old 23
  • linear motor, hence no manual focus clutch
  • A pause lock button on the aperture ring
  • older 23 is fairly slow and jittery with autofocus
  • new 23 is much faster and very quick. Much smoother and quieter
  • old 23 did not have good close focusing
  • new 23 has double the magnification of the old 23. Better for close up photography
  • quite interesting sunstars. Beautiful lens for that
  • in linear mode, it can be quite difficult to manual focus precisely. Not ideal for videography. But focus breathing is really nicely controlled
  • bokeh some cats eye in the corners wide open. Goes away immediately when stopping down a bit. Overall very nice bokeh, smooth. He likes the way it renders transitions. Some onion rings in the actual bokeh balls themselves
  • Sharpness Center: outstandingly good in the center even at f/1.4. The old 23 is also very sharp. But narrow improvement is visible on the new XF23mmF1.4
  • Sharpness Corner: the old 23 is pretty mushy in the corners at f/1.4, and also does not get super sharp at f/2.8. The new 23 is much nicer even at f/1.4
  • new 23 is nicely improved
  • He recommends to buy the new 23, but for videographer the older might be better for manual focus

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