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Preview: Fujinon XF 16-80mm f/4
#11
Hello, I have been following this site for years, and years, first thanks for all the test in the past. This site is one of the few that "Tells it like it is" and is much appreciated! This has saved me time, money and aggravation, this cannot be understated! Obviously I'm interested in this lens, and have read some reviews that range from happy to horrendous, mostly the latter.

I see there is a sample gallery posted and honestly I was surprised that the images posted were not as bad as I thought. My question is this: how is the lens in the 60-70mm range @ F5.6? I have not come across any shots in this area. Is it better than at 80mm? The reason I ask is that I would be perfectly happy with a 16-60 or 70mm, a 24-105mm FF equivalent. If the lens is good at 70mm I can live with that, even if 80mm is subpar, I want the lens because of the convenience (macro, IS, etc.), and just back it off from max range.

My personal experience is that I prefer f4.0 versions of lenses than f2.8 zooms, mostly due to size and weight issues, especially as sensor technology is so good now the loss of a stop is fine if it takes some kilos out of the backpack!
I currently have the 10-24mm, 55-200mm and 18-55 f 2.8-4.0 I'm reasonably happy with these lenses.
Thanks for your thoughts.
#12
Big Grin 
I am looking forward to seeing the review for this lens! I am considering it as a hiking lens that is attached to my camera most of the time. The pictures in the sample gallery didn't look as bad as I expected, perhaps this lens is better than the 18-135 even?
#13
By God, how bad is it?
#14
I finally broke down and bought this lens, locally in Innsbruck, Austria. Perhaps I got a good copy but I'm pleased with the results. Yes, wide-open in the extreme corners it's not a rock star but I have yet to try an 24-105 mm+ lens that is? Even with that, results under extreme conditions are acceptable and perfectly usable for my pro work. My experience is that by f5.6 its plenty sharp, and mid-range, it's amazingly sharp, in the rock star area! If you back off the extreme wide-end at 16 mm or 80 mm, down to 75 mm its actually pretty stunning, and again try not to shoot wide open and the extreme ends. My previous experience with such lenses are the Canon L series 24-105 f4.0 and 24-70 f 4.0 lenses and the Nikon 24-120 mm f 4.0. All of those were admittedly dogs. I also have the 18-55 mm f2.8-f4.0 Fuji lens, which is fantastically sharp, lightweight and compact but I've been frustrated with it though, as it's usually not wide enough, those 2 mm make a massive difference on the wide end, and not long enough on the tele side! For night/dusk work this lens is also great with minimal flare. For traveling, backpacking, street-photography, and some circumstances even landscape shooting, it's a fantastic lens, the extra width and tele and worth the compromises. I've pretty much stuck with f4.0 zooms because of size and weight which is critical for me, then the extra few stops which can be compensated with extra ISO. It's now my daily, go-to, workhorse lens, and is always attached to the body. I went from a bag full of heavy Canon glass and full-frame bodies I didn't use as much due to the size and weight, down to two Fuji bodies and the 10-24mm, 16-80mm and 55-200mm lenses and that's it. Photography is fun again!
  


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