Fujifilm XF90mmF2 R LM WR field review

I’m actually starting to get tired of myself. Each time Fujifilm comes out with a new lens, I seem to go bananas with the ohs, ahs and woohoos. And now Fujifilm Nordic has been kind enough to let me shoot with the XF90mmF2 lens for a little over 3 months, so click inside to see if it’s woohoo-time again. 20151014 Hanna 391

For what I shoot (mostly fashion, lifestyle, portraits and industrial subjects), this lens has the perfect focal length. It’s long enough to do good things to the perspective and compression, but not too long, so you don’t end up too far away from your subject I think.

I praised the XF50-140mmF2.8 lens highly in an earlier blogpost here, and I usually carry both that lens and the 90 in my bag 90% of the time. Even though the 50-140 is one of the most amazing zoomlenses I’ve ever used, I must admit I keep reaching for the 90. The zoom has a longer reach and is more flexible of course, but when I need the longer reach, I often find a way to work around it so I can use the 90 instead. Yes, I’ve grown that fond of the XF90!

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Weight and size

The first that struck me, was that it was quite a bit smaller than I had expected (or feared…). And it balances great with an X-T1 with the vertical battery hand grip. The lens hood adds a bit of length to the 90 of course, but I often find myself shooting without the hood. This lens produces some truly magical results when shooting into the light without the hood. I consider myself a stills guy, not a movie maker. But check out this short moodvie (=mood movie) I shot straight towards and into the sun with the 90.

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Shutter speeds

The XF90 lacks OIS, one of the things that is so great about the XF50-140. And in the beginning I kept getting too many unsharp images. But it was simply because I was spoiled with OIS on the zoom, so I shot at shutter speeds that was too slow. I imagine OIS would have made the XF90 bigger. And after some usage, I think it was a wise move to skip it and get a smaller and lighter lens. I have just gotten used to not shooting at slower speeds than 1/200 sec when handholding.

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Image quality

I’m not a numbers and graphs guy. I shoot, look, evaluate, and then shoot some more if I like what I get. And I like what I get. This lens is amazingly sharp, and it has that wonderful unsharpness in the out of focus areas too. The colors and contrast are beautiful, and it also has that almost 3D’ish look to the images. Simply stunning! Well, a woohoo actually! And I shoot it wide open almost all the time.

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Some tech stuff

The autofocus is fast and precise with this lens, and it’s good to know that it’s weather sealed. The aperture and focus rings are really good, smooth but with just enough resistance. Don’t worry if you hear that clonking sound inside, it’s just the lens relaxing and enjoying some time off when it’s not powered by the camera.

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Conclusion

So to sum it all up, the XF90mmF2 R LM WR really is a magical piece of engineering. And since Christmas is all about magic, do yourself a big favour and get your X one of these as this years Christmas present! Your X will love you for it!

Please feel free to follow me on Instagram to see more of the stuff I produce. You’ll get shot stories behind the images, some behind the scenes stuff, lighting setups. Hope I’ll see you there!

Cheers and happy holidays!

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17 thoughts on “Fujifilm XF90mmF2 R LM WR field review

  1. Wow. What a great set of amazing photos. The video is really nice too. Enjoyed the review a lot. I rented the 90 for a few days for a recent trip. But unfortunately, I barely used and 35/1.4 was glued to my XT10 99% of the time. Your review makes me want to rent the 90 again.

    1. Thanks a million! I really appreciate the feedback. You definetely should give the 90 a go if you’re looking for a longer lens. If you do rent it again, just lock down the 35 in your suitcase for a few hours… 😉

      Cheers,
      Eivind

  2. Thanks. I made the decision to go with the 90. It will arrive tomorrow evening. I have the 56 1.2 but have missed way to many shots due too slow response. I hope the 90 will nail shots from the beginning. Can’t wait to let you you know.

    1. Hi Jim! So cool to hear that you bought the 90, and I can’t wait to hear what you feel about it. The new quad linear motor in the 90 makes focussing much faster (and more precise) than the 56. I love the 56, but I find it a bit harder to nail focus with it just like you do. With the 90 you will need faster shutter speeds to get sharp shots of course, and I try not to go below 1/200 if I can.

      Cheers,
      Eivind

  3. You’re funny. You should write more. A short but ver interesting review of the 90/2 lens

    1. Thanks Michael! So glad you enjoyed it. I’ve got plenty of more blogposts planned, and I’ll definetely write more when time allows for it.

      Cheers,
      Eivind

  4. Well the picture quality of the lens is very good but in my opinion the autofocus is not so fast at all and that clonking sound in the lens can get quite loud and strange what I really don’t like.

    1. Hi Dietmar! What do you shoot since you don’t find the AF fast? Everything is relative of course, but for what I mainly shoot with it (fashion and lifestyle), I find the AF both fast and precise.

      I also know that many complain and say they are nervous because of the clunking sound. But the lens is designed that way when not in shooting mode, and the sound comes from the quad linear focus system with the magnets (as far as I’ve been told by Fujifilm). For me it’s like my bike. The chain has a slack when I’m not riding it, and that’s just like it’s supposed to be. But as soon as I push the pedals, everything tightens up.

      Cheers,
      Eivind

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