HomeReviewsFUJINON XF23mm F1.4 R – First Experience Kevin September 6, 2013 Reviews 49 Comments The Fujinon XF23mm F1.4 Yesterday I had the pleasure of using the XF23mm F1.4 lens for a day. I’ve had a pretty eventful week. Last Saturday I photographed a wedding in Rome, then I was privileged to be invited out to Tokyo by Fujifilm for some R&D meetings, presentations and the chance to shoot with the XF23mm F1.4 for the first time. I’m going to blog more about the trip itself and my time with the very good people at Fuji next week. In the meantime, here are some images I shot with the XF23mm F1.4 yesterday whilst in Tokyo. The images aren’t in a particular order, but they end with a snapshot of my kids running towards me when I got home….. (they were interested in the presents I’d bought them I think). In due course, I’ll do a more concise overview of the XF23mm F1.4 itself but my opinion is not going to be anything other than – this is a FANTASTIC lens and a great addition to the X-Series mount lenses that Fuji have created. For me, 35mm is my perfect focal length and the 23mm lens on the X-Pro1, X-E1 or X-M1 works out at exactly 35mm. I love the extra stop of light available over the equivalent focal length in the X100S. The lowlight performance of this lens is smashing. Absolutely smashing. The bokeh, especially in low light is just beautiful and the feel of the lens is great. Combined with the focus peaking on the X-Pro1 and X-M1 I think this a great lens for street shooting and I’ll definitely be using it extensively for my wedding photography work. The images in this collection were shot on a combination of the X-Pro1 and the X-M1. I have to say Tokyo is one of the most amazing places I’ve visited. The people, especially, are genuinely so kind and hospitable. It’s a place I hope to visit and explore further in the future. I only had a day, so a lot of these images are snapshots to a certain extent but I did try and get a range of shots to demonstrate the lens including verticals and macro close up images. The XF23mm F1.4 Lens Sample Images Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/11 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/13 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/1.8 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/150th at F/2 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/1200th at F/1.6 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/1700th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/1200th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/350th at F/9 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/4000th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/4000th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/180th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/320th at F/16 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/125th at F/1.4 ISO 800 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/450th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/200th at F/11 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/300th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/60th at F/1.4 ISO 250 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/105th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/60th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/125th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/125th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/550th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/150th at F/2.8 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/3.6 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/1.8 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/1.4 ISO 1,250 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/4000th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/12.8 ISO 200 Fuji X-Pro1 XF23mm 1/60th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/100th at F/1.4 ISO 3,200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/125th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/30th at F/1.4 ISO 500 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/60th at F/2.4 ISO 1,600 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/500th at F/1.4 ISO400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/100th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/70th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/180th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/125th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/125th at F/1.4 ISO 400 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/200th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/1800th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/3,500th at F/5.6 ISO 3,200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/200th at F/1.4 ISO 200 Fuji X-M1 XF23mm 1/250th at F/1.4 ISO 6,400 You can see a little bit more about my trip to Tokyo, and further images here. Please feel free to share, Tweet and Like this post. Go on, you know you want to :) Subscribe to email updates - stay up to date with everything that happens on this site. Subscribe to our mailing list * indicates required Email Address * 49 Responses Greg Thurtle September 6, 2013 Some stunning images there Kevin – great composition and the lens looks fabulous too! Thanks for sharing Reply Damien Lovegrove September 6, 2013 Excellent shots Kevin. What a great few weeks you have had It’s exciting to see you go from strength to strength. The success you are experiencing is well deserved and bucks a trend in the industry so it’s doubly well earned. I can’t wait to get my hands on my 23mm lens. It’s my ideal focal length. For the lens to get a great thumbs up from you is encouraging to say the least. I look forward to your extended write up. Thanks for sharing your first impressions. Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 Thanks Damien for all your kind words. I’ve been using this lens more and more since I got back and it really is a lovely optic. Especially wide open….. Thanks again and see you at one of the mini conventions soon I hope. Kevin Reply Matt Smith September 6, 2013 Those were all from ONE DAY?!!! I… I’m… uh… wow. Nice job. I’m going to go cry in a corner now. Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 LOL. It was a LONG day….. and we had great guides too. Reply Jason Parsons September 6, 2013 A true Master you are…. Reply Bob Owen September 6, 2013 優秀！ Reply DJPB September 6, 2013 Clearly, this lens is in the same league as all the other XF’s. Stunning IQ, minimal aberration,… Hard to resist, as the ‘true’ 35mm is a very interesting focal, to me the range feels ‘complete’. Particular with the 14mm, 27mm, 35mm & eventually the 60mm for portrait & macro and the 55-200mm, for landscape and travel, there’s not a lot more to desired in the Fuji-world. Everything lies now in the hands of Fuji to make the X-Pro1MkII excel over anything else in the market. Reply Top Lertpanyavit September 6, 2013 Amazing photos, and my mind is blown that all that was done in ONE DAY! (poof!) Images look real sharp, although in some of the photos, the bokeh wide open seemed a little busy. Still plenty good I’m sure! Reply Mike Oxford September 6, 2013 I just returned my XE-1 kit; back-focus problems, and a few usability/form issues that -really- irked me and keeps me from just exchanging. However, I’m not buying anything yet and hoping that the XProMk2 comes out … we’re on the cusp of a revolution and I’m really hoping that Fuji nails it over the wall on the next iteration! For me, quite a few pictures did not load properly, but from those that did, I could see that it does look like a fantastic lens and I cannot wait to see what is coming next. Fuji is truly “disrupting” the market. Reply Mike Oxford September 7, 2013 They are loading now…. that really is a beautiful lens! Man, the detail… Reply Justin Clayton September 6, 2013 Stunning images. How did you find AF speed compared to other Fuji lenses? Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 The AF speed is great. I’d say a little quicker than the 35mm and a lot quicker than the 60mm (:-)). It’s similar in function to the 14mm and I think would be a great partner to that lens. Reply Sergio February 13, 2014 Hi Kevin, I’m on the point to sell my loved 35L. I know it will be quite like a jump on the darkness, but I really liked how the X-Pro1 with 35mm performed on last wedding season, and I wanted to bring to it my favorite focal length. I’m scared about the focus hints I had with the XF35 that sometimes really slowed my shooting. What about the 23mm? Does it perform better concerning AF reliability (on X-Pro1)? Buying the 23mm could be the second step to the complete conversion to Fuji X System (the third will be buying the 56mm). Thanks Sergio Kevin Mullins February 25, 2014 Hi Sergio, I believe the 23mm is faster at focusing than the 35mm. However, if you set up the X-Pro1 with back button focusing as I do it should really speed up your shooting. Cheers Kevin Watcher24 September 6, 2013 What a bulk of stunning pictures. Thnx a lot for sharing! So much looking forward for the XF23 :-))) Reply Arn September 6, 2013 Ummm… If I send you my address…. Thanks for sharing these wonderful images of what this lens (and the photographer) can create. Reply Neale James September 6, 2013 Incredible work Kevin, fab. You know, the picture that I love most, and call me a softy old bas**** but its your two little ones chasing toward you at the very end. It says to me; “Dad you’re back. All is good again.” Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 Thanks Neale….it was nice to see them again for sure Reply jenwei September 7, 2013 @Mike Oxford Could you explain how you could get back focus with CAF? Reply Mike Oxford September 7, 2013 I would put the rectangle over the foreground object, half-press, and it would pull the background into focus way more than the front. Constantly … SOTP about 60%. Worked okay in manual, and “better” in continuous, but I missed a lot of shots (including some good birthday shots for two of my daughters.) Lighting was a bit “low” but not real low … it just REALLY liked to focus past what was on the rectangle. I tried everything. I even put it on a tripod, focused it manually, then switched to AF and half-pressed…and it brought the back into focus. Honestly, it was like the AF had “in the square” and “out of the square” completely backwards at times. I tried all kinds of different subjects in different lights, contrasty subjects against more bland backgrounds, etc. Super frustrating. How does it happen? I don’t know. Reply goro September 8, 2013 The AF window obviously has both foreground and background in it and it has to choose one of them. Reduce the AF rectangle size using the pinwheel. Fujifan September 7, 2013 Hi I would be interested in your experiences with the following 3 lenses: This new 23/1.4 vs. the 23mm lens in the x100s vs. the Fuji 35/1.4 for the x-Pro1/X-E1 How would you compare the 3 vs. each other. I am especially interested in lens flare, mainly at close focusing distance with apertures @F2-f4 and also image sharpness from center to corners, if I need to put the main subject at the side of the image. This is for people, landscape and travel. No architecture. Print size max. A3. Would it be worth (for IQ) to upgarde from a X100s to a X-Pro1/X-E1 with this new 23/1.4? Is the IQ of the 35/1.4 with the Xpro1/XE1 better (@F2-F4) than the X100s? Thanks in advance Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 I’ll be putting a blog post together (probably on http://www.my-eyes.co.uk) on this very subject. Keep an eye out there….. Reply Dink p1 owner September 7, 2013 stunning lens indeed …so what is the significance differences between p1 e1 m1 a1 with same cansor same apsc in terms of image quality ? Not about cam features Reply Patrick September 7, 2013 Stunning work Kevin! Certainly seems to be another winner doesn’t it? Great job man. Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 Thanks Patrick….yes, it’s a wonderful optic from what I’ve seen so far. Reply DanTHEME September 7, 2013 What a beauty. This perfect 35mm equivalence could bring me into the X camp. Reply Alessandro September 7, 2013 Congratulations, best shot and best test/info. I love X1 P…. What is the general camera setting you prefear for your shoot? In postproduction you use VSCO? Ale – Italy Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 I have Shadow & Highlight at -1. Sharpness at +1 No VSCO. All processed in LR directly. Reply Paul Rogers September 7, 2013 Stunning work Kevin, shows what happen when talented photographer meets top quality kit! I’m so glad I invested in a x100s but that extra stop may make me reconsider… Reply Wolfgang Lonien September 7, 2013 Wow these are really good. I’ll have a look at the rest of your blog later, after these first congrats. Reply Ian Hamilton September 7, 2013 Great shots Kevin, and a globe-trotting week! Hmmn, an x-Pro and the 23mm might have to make it onto my “wish list” …. Reply Alex September 7, 2013 Really good images. I was wondering what kind of post-processing you performed on these images, as I really love that soft subtle colour rendering Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 Nothing special. These images were processed in LR. Default import settings. A little bit of warmth added. Some cropping. Reply Ulm0 September 8, 2013 Hi Kevin, As a visitor in Tokyo in this moment, your pictures made us feel every feeling we have had during this week visiting the places you have captured in such a beautiful manner. Even we acquired the X-Pro 1 for a friend, just to fall in love with the camera and try to resist getting another for me! Enjoy your trip, we will continue visiting this beautiful country. Kyoto awaits! Regards, Ulm0 Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 Enjoy your trip. It’s an epic place and somewhere I really hope to visit again (perhaps for the Olympics!). Reply Peter Fang September 9, 2013 Hi Kevin, Great images. Are these out-of-camera JPEGs or RAW files with post-processing? If the latter, what RAW conversion software did you use? Thanks! Peter Reply Kevin Mullins September 9, 2013 These are a bit of both. I started shooting RAW, then realised LR doesn’t support the X-M1 yet so switched to JPG. For the RAW conversions I used the Release Candidate of Lightroom 5.2. Reply Peter Fang September 9, 2013 Hi Kevin, Thanks for your reply. So I take that all the X-M1 images here are OOC JPEGs, including the B&W ones? I personally think Fuji’s OOC JPEGs are better than all the brands that I have used and this proves the case again. If you use Apple Aperture, Apple’s latest Camera RAW update has already added X-M1 support. Peter Neale James September 9, 2013 Superb Kev, an incredible set… with that contrasty look I love. I’ll save all the other superlatives until we meet for that family beer! Welcome home. Reply Mark Dell September 10, 2013 Hi Kevin these are superb shots that show the X series at its best. I too am really into the “X” look ever since my Fuji X100 a year or two back. All my Canon gear has been sold and now its been turned into a Fuji X Pro-1 and the 35 f1.4 the 18-55 and the 55-200 I love all of them! Reply Geoff September 10, 2013 Great article and images! I’m wondering what are the advantages of this Fuji 23mm 1.4 over the older 35mm 1.4 lens. Thanks, Geoff Reply Kevin Mullins September 10, 2013 Thanks. This gives a 135 equivalent of 35mm which is preferable length for me. The 35mm lens gives an equivalent of around 53mm. Reply Benjamin Wang September 11, 2013 Hello Kevin. Great works!! I love the subjects you shoot and the color tone of this series. Personally I use X100s. It’s a great camera with excellent IQ but somehow the color of its JPEG is not right to me. It’s a little over-exposed and low contrasted. But I see fabulous rendering in your photos instead of the drawbacks of mine. You have X100s too. Maybe you have the idea about the reasons? Thanks in advance. Reply Nishi Sharma September 11, 2013 Stunning photos Kevin. The potential of these mirrorless cameras is a great advance in digital photography. Reply JerryR October 3, 2013 I rarely comment but I follow your blog closely and really enjoy your images. I also watched the youtube presentation you did for Fuji and thought it was great! I’m not a wedding photographer nor am I a potential bride. I shoot Fuji X cameras but even if I didn’t I’d still follow your blog because of your style. I like the emotion you’re able to capture. Jerry Reply Robin F. October 12, 2013 I was curious how many of these beautiful images were shot manual focus vs. auto-focus? Did you find the auto-focus speed improved over other fuji lenses? Reply Kevin Mullins October 12, 2013 These were all AF as I wanted to test it myself. Performed really well. Reply Leave a Reply Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Name* Email* Website Comment Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.