Lens review

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56 mm f/1.2 R

11 December 2014
Arkadiusz Olech

3. Build quality

When it comes to very fast telephoto lenses designed for mirrorless cameras the choice is hardly impressive. Apart from the Fujinon, tested here, you can mention the “Panaleica” 1.2/42.5 and the manual Voigtlander 0.95/42.5. All of them provide an angle of view of about 30 degrees and their properties are presented in the following chart. It is clear that the “Panaleica” features the biggest number of optical elements but most probably it is connected to its image stabilization unit. The Voigtlander is physically the heaviest due to its build quality – it is made completely of metal. The Fujinon fares the worst when it comes to the number of aperture blades and the minimum focusing distance.

In the photo presented below the tested lens is positioned next to the Fujinon XF 35 mm f/1.4 R.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56 mm f/1.2 R - Build quality

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The Fujinon XF 56 mm f/1.2 R starts with a metal mount featuring a contact plate, which surrounds a rear element, 28 mm in diameter. The cross-section of that element is not exactly round, the circle being noticeably truncated along the edges parallel to the longer sides of the detector. The element doesn’t move and it is situated almost on the same level as the contacts – it means there will be no problems with dirt invading the interior of the lens.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56 mm f/1.2 R - Build quality

The proper body of the lens starts with a smooth, immobile, metal ring with a red marking, making the alignment with a camera easier; then you see several inscriptions, stating the focal length value, the serial number of the lens along with the “MADE IN JAPAN” notice. Further on you see an aperture ring. In our humble opinion it turns with too much slack but still it allows you to change the aperture value every 1/3 EV step. The ring is 11 mm wide and over half of it is covered by ribs. The next part is an immobile, smooth ring which simply begs for a depth of field scale – unfortunately the producer turned a deaf ear to that begging.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56 mm f/1.2 R - Build quality

Then you find a ribbed manual focus ring, as wide as 30 mm. It moves with an electronic relay so in order to move the elements the lens must be attached to a working camera body. It is a joy to use, its movements being very smooth and well-damped. Still it’s a pity the lens doesn’t provide the focus clutch mechanism, used successfully in such devices as e.g. the Fujinon 2.8/1.4 which focus ring could work, depending on its position, with an electronic or mechanical relay.

Immediately after the manual focus ring the body of the lens ends, turning into a hood mount.

The front element of the lens is 47 mm in diameter; it doesn’t move and is surrounded by an inscription with the name and the parameters of the lens along with a non-rotating filter thread, 62 mm in diameter.

When it comes to the optical construction you deal here with 11 elements positioned in 8 groups. One element is aspherical and two are made of low dispersion glass. Inside the system you can also find a circular aperture with seven diaphragm blades (pity it doesn’t have nine blades though) which can be closed down to f/16.0.

Buyers get both caps, a hood and a soft pouch in the box along with the lens.

Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56 mm f/1.2 R - Build quality