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Fujinon XF35mm f/1.4 R: The Magical One (for me)


The Fujinon XF35mm f/1.4 R

There is place in the South of Laos where the mighty Mekong river gets over 6 miles large, spreading its brown tentacles in an intricated and slow flowing tangle of streams creating what are called the 4,000 islands: thousands of small hills of sand and shrubs captured in a massive labyrinth of turbid water.

Mislead by the deceptive peace of that enchanting landscape, I grabbed an old wooden Kayak of dubious reliability and sailed out to explore the area all alone.

But the more I reached the border to Cambodia, the more the Mekong was getting stronger, culimating in the furious Li Phi waterfalls.

Long story short: the flow got stronger, I could no longer paddle my way back, the waterfalls were approaching and I had no other choice than to jump into the water with my gear and find my way back by swimming in the Mekong, holding myself on branches of submerged trees and walking on the countless little sandy island.

During this adventure, my gear broke. All of it. Except for my Fujifilm XF35mm f/1.4, which survived the long swim as if nothing ever happened.

Now this alone would be enough for me to call the XF35mmF1.4 “magical” (and also the beer I drunk after this experience tasted “magical” ;))

But for most of us the true magic of this lens does not lie in its underwater capabilities, but in its images.

The Magic

Why talk about Fujifilm’s oldest lens in 2022?

Well, because according to our recent sruvey it is still the most owned prime lens among you guys.

And also because no matter how many similar lenses Fujifilm will launch, from the stellar sharp XF33mmF1.4 to the compact and fast focusing XF35mmF2 and even to the patented XF33mmF1.2 (if that ever comes), I will never sell my XF35mmF1.4 and probably not even buy any other 35-ish lens ever, because the Fujinon XF35mmF1.4 is magical!

So how does this magic come to be?

From a technical point of view, Fujifilm did try to explain it us in a dedicated article, where they talk about the design philosophy of this lens. Fujifilm basically didn’t care about specs and MTF charts, but designed the lens thinking at the real life use. You can read more here.

Also Fuji Guy Billy once said here, that Fujifilm did not want to create a clinically perfect lens, but a lens with character. We could call it a “perfectly imperfect” lens, a unique lens, or, in other words, a lens with a “magic touch“.

And as the Sigma CEO once said here, creating a lens with character is much more difficult than creating a perfect lens.

But technicalities aside, what I’ve experienced over all these years is that for me it seems easier to snap images I truly love with the XF35mmF1.4 rather than with many other of my lenses.

A few examples:

So, despite having a decent amount of lenses, some of them I use even more than my XF35mmF1.4, for some reason I can’t really explain, it’s often the Fujinon XF35mmF1.4 R that snaps the images I love most.

This alone (and the fact that it went with me through the Mekong adventure) makes this lens special to me.

And many others think so too, as you can see in the video below, where a fellow X shooter tries to capture in words the magic of the lens.

XF35mmF1.4 R


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Ein Beitrag geteilt von Fuji_Rumors (@fuji_rumors)