Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm F2.8 Review
By Yvonne
2022-09-27

Fujifilm Fujinon XF27mm F2.8 is a small prime lens designed for Fuji X cameras. Although it is sharp at the center, the edge performance of the lens is not the best.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm F2.8 Review

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 27mm F2.8

Let's get to the bottom

Fujifilm Fujinon XF27mm F2.8 is a small prime lens designed for Fuji X cameras. Although it is sharp at the center, the edge performance of the lens is not the best.

The pros

  • It is very small and lightweight.
  • Excellent center sharpness.
  • Classic field of view equivalent to 40mm

Cons

  • No aperture ring.
  • It lacks weather sealing and optical stabilization
  • Focus hunting in AF–C.

The Fujifilm Fujinon XF27mm F2.8 is sure to please fans of compact prime lenses. It retails for $449.95 This slim lens works with Fujifilm's X mirrorless camera system. It is almost pocket-friendly. The lens doesn't come with an aperture ring which may be a problem for Fuji owners. However, it delivers excellent image quality and small size. Although it's a decent lens, the quality is not as high as that of the more expensive XF23mm F2 R WR. It has better image quality and protection against dust and splashes, but the price is the same.

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Design

Let's talk about size—it's the XF 27mm's (Amazon: $446.02)(Opens in new window biggest draw. It measures in at 2.4x0.9inches (HD) and only 2.8 ounces. The lens almost seems like it's nothing once attached to the camera. I was able with the lens attached, to slip an XE3 into my winter jacket pocket. Although there is no hood available, you can attach 39mm front filters. It is available in silver or black.

When paired with an APSC camera, the angle of view will be approximately 40mm in full frame terms. Although it is a bit wider than the standard angle of view, it's not as broad as a prime 35mm or 28mm equivalent. It's a good focal length. I find it easier to compose shots using a 35mm equivalent lens than with a 40mm one. Of course, your mileage will vary.

A physical aperture ring is not available, which is a rare feature in the Fujifilm system. You will need to adjust the f stop using the controls on the camera. Older models might need to be updated with firmware, however newer cameras should not have any problems recognizing the lens and controlling it. Optical stabilization is also omitted, but that's not surprising—it's something you don't typically find on lenses of this type.

The 23mm F2 has weather sealing included, but there is no such thing. This is not a problem if the body has no seals. However, XPro2 and XT2 bodies with 27mm F2 should be used in bad weather.

Although the 27mm can focus as close to 13.4 inches (0.34m), it is quite limited. Many pancake designs lack close focus capabilities. The 27mm's meager 1/10 magnification ratio does not change that trend. Sometimes I had to go backwards to take photos. This is one of the costs you have to pay to get the design. The XF23mm F2 allows you to focus to 8.7 inches at 1:7.7 magnification.

Autofocus speeds were quite fast when using the XE3. In a matter of 0.1 seconds, the 27mm lock onto a target and focus it quickly. It's not suitable for use with AF-S modes. The lens would wander around erratically when it switched to continuous focus (AF-C), which can lead to unreliable results. AF-C was more commonly used for telephoto photography so it wasn't a major issue in practice, but be aware. Use a different lens if you want to follow moving subjects.

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Image quality

To test its performance, I combined the 27mm with the Amazon 24MPX-E3 (Opens in new window) It passes the standard Imatest center-weighted sharpness testing. The 27mm produces 2,659 lines per picture at f/2.8. This is a strong result right to the edge of the frame. Although it's less sharp than the F2 23mm at F/2.8 (3.104 lines), the 27mm still has a very high quality range wide open.

The resolution increases at f/4 (2,904 lines), peaking at f/5.6 (3.218 lines), and f/8 (3.277 lines), which are both outstanding results. A slight decrease is seen at f/11 (3,0008 lines), but a noticeable drop at f/16 (2562 lines).

The distortion is well controlled. It is only 0.8% visible in real life. Corner illumination is also strong. Even when the lens is wide open, the corners don't show any visible vignette. They lag by just 0.9EV.

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Conclusions

Although the XF27mm F2.8 lens doesn't feature a sexy f/2 aperture or f/1.4 maximum aperture it is slimmer than other Fujifilm X lenses. Sharp results are achieved right to the edges of the frame. When stopped down, it can match the sharpest lenses for the Fujifilm X system. It's not without some issues—it doesn't focus that close, and you don't want to use it with tracking focus enabled. It's worth the compromise if you are willing to accept them. We rate another small, although not pancake, lens higher—the XF 23mm F2 R WR ($449.00 at Amazon)(Opens in a new window) captures twice the light at its widest setting, is sharper at f/2.8, and includes an aperture ring and protection from dust and splashes, all for the same price.