Fujinon XF18mm f/1.4 R LM WR Development Interview: All About Resolution…

The Fujinon XF18mm f/1.4 R LM WR is an interesting lens because the XF16mm f/1.4 WR is a pretty great lens that comes highly recommended by owners, but Fujifilm seems to be hinting that the XF16mm won’t cut it as sensor resolution increases and the XF18mm f/1.4 has been designed with that in mind. It looks like Fujifilm is getting their lens lineup ready for a high megapixel X-H2.

  • Mr. Ware was in charge of the development
  • XF18mm f/2 R was the original 18mm design and the new one is the XF18mm f/1.4 LM WR
  • The resolution was their top priority
  • The original 18mm was released 10 years ago
  • The resolution was a priority because pixel counts keep going up
  • Fujifilm is trying to keep aberration, coma, color, etc…. under control
  • Fujifilm is aiming for a rich optical design that increases resolution and autofocus speed
  • Adding linear motors makes a big difference
  • The XF18mm f/1.4 design came from correcting the aberration issues of the XF18mm f/2
  • Fixing the flaws of the 18mm made it a little bigger but accomplished the other goals
  • Went from 2 aspherical elements to 3 and one ED element that’s normally used for telephoto to correct the lens
  • Even though this lens is wide the bokeh blur quality is important
  • The shortest shooting distance is 20cm
  • It’s hard to move a lot of aspherical elements well
  • The 18mm has an aperture position lock like the 10-24mm and GF lenses have
  • Future XF lenses will be designed to make it hard to take the lens off auto
  • The reason to put a focus clutch on a lens is the focus distance scale, which is important for rangefinder-style shooting like on the x-pro
  • Most lenses have a focus ring that rotates 360 all around with no absolute value
  • Focus scales are only approximate and accurate focus will become more important the more pixels you add
  • Since Pixel Pitch affects depth it actually changes with temperature and other characteristics
  • The XF18mm f/2 was designed to be compact, but the XF18 f/1.4 is designed for resolution wide open and speed
  • The XF18mm f/1.4 has less aberration wide open than the XF16mm f/1.4
  • Great for summer starscape photos
  • The XF16mm smears a little in the corners compared to the XF18mm for Astrophotography
  • Optical performance can change a lot with even just 1mm of change in focal length
  • Fujifilm has optical distortion down to zero on the 14mm
  • Building stand up really straight tat 14mm
  • The 16mm feels a little soft compared to the 18mm
  • 2mm can make a big difference

Fujinon XF18mm f/1.4 R LM WR: B&H Photo / Amazon /Adorama
Fujinon XF16mm f/1.4 WR: B&Hphoto  / Amazon / Adorama

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