Fujinon 23mm 1.4 versus 23mmf2

Since i started using the  Fuji x system , back in 2014 ,  i fell in love with the Fujinon  23mm 1.4 .

The perfect all round  prime lens . Ok , is big , heavy and noisy , but there is something magical about this lens . 

This lens is solid , beautifully crafted and delivers amazing  image quality . Is sharp , even wide open and with a great bokeh.

I use this lens mainly for street photography and photojournalistic projects  but with the focal lens of 35mm full frame equivalency you can pretty much shoot anything from street , portraits , photojournalism and weddings.

I like so much this lens that when Fuji launch the Fujinon  f2 version , i got one!

Small , light , really fast auto-focus , weather sealed ….Great ? No .

All this qualities  would make it  a winner if compared with the old 23 mm 1.4 , but is not . The magic of the 1.4 is simply not there.

The old barrel shaped 1.4 is a BEAST ! 

If you could have  only one lens  in your bag  this is the one . Delivers  amazing images  and i really like the ability to zone focusing , using  the depth of field and distance markers on the barrel. Plus the extra stop makes the diference in low light .

Saying that i use the 23  f2 as well….a LOT  ! Hate the shape ( designed to present the least obstruction in the corner of the optical viewfinder on the X-Pro bodies ) , and being mainly a street photographer i don’t care as well about the weather sealing .

That’s right ! And is not because i live in Lisbon . In the winter we have our share of rain as well  , but when in the streets i’m not standing still in the rain . I will take cover under a doorstep or other drysh spot  waiting  for my on the run wet prey . A  great opportunity  to use the street fishing technique .

In my opinion for most of the situations that we normally  face photographing  , weather  sealing is not  important if you  use some common sense . But , no doubt that  is a powerful marketing tool to sell lenses.

So , why do i use the 23 f2 so much ?

Being smaller , lighter and with a faster and quieter  focusing makes a  difference in the streets and in  conjunction with my X-Pro2 , just fell very well balanced and almost pocketable .

The optical quality is very good , but in my opinion  , far from the 23 1.4 . The magic is not there , along with superior sharpness and detail of the 23 1.4 .

Definitely , the 23 1.4 delivers an IQ from a different league.

But , in the end and for different reasons this are the two lenses that are always on my bag . And , yes they are both 35mm focal lens equivalent.

Keep it simple ! 

From a long time now ,  i have used just one lens for all my work and that lens was the Fujinon 23 1.4 .

I find out that keeping it simple will help you to focus more in what really matters …taking pictures .

If you stick long enough with the same “ rifle “ , you and the camera  will become a very well oiled tool  that will operate almost instinctively .

The results will start showing up in a more prolific photography and more important , a portfolio with a consistent style .

In this days my entire gear is confined to two X bodies ,  X-Pro2  and X-T2 ,and four  lenses :

23 mm 1.4 , 23 mm f2 , 56mm 1.2 and 16mm 1.4 

The 56 mm and the 16 mm are only used in very specific situations . 

I truly believe that the right way to improve our photography is to stick to one focal lens . 

Not wasting time thinking which  lenses am i carrying on holidays ,or loosing moments that could give a good picture , changing lenses in the middle of the street .

Plus , i shoot a lot from the hip and using the same focal lens for so long allows me to instinctively be in the right place to frame the picture correctly .

All pictures taken with Fujinon 23mm 1.4 & 23mm f2 .

Enjoy ! 

Greetings from Lisbon

Angelo

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 1.4 R

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 1.4 R

 

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

 

XF 23 F2 R W

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

XF 23 F2 R WR

 

XF 23 1.4 R

XF 23 1.4 R

XF 23 1.4 R

XF 23 1.4 R

XF 23 1.4 R

XF 23 F2 R WR