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Fujifilm GFX + 63mm f/2.8 Aperture Series: Three Pines

I’ve more or less gravitated to the Fujifilm GF 63mm f/2.8 as the most reliable lens for the Fujifilm GFX, although I can’t stand its cheap feel: a whiny focusing motor and a front that tends to pinch my finger with its in/out non-internal focusing reminiscent of the crummiest 50/1.8 lenses from CaNikon.

Fujifilm GF 63mm f/2.8

Still, with a little stopping down the results with the 63/2.8 are very nice—a combination of very high sensor quality and very good lens performance.

Sometimes its left/right skew works out well, as in the Aspen and Firs by Lee Vining Creek series, and sometimes the lens skew is a problem until f/9 or so, as in this series, plain to see:

Fujifilm GF 63mm f/2.8 Aperture Series: Three Pines

Image sizes up to full resolution from f/2.8 through f/11.

It’s disappointing to find that 2 of the 3 GF lenses have lens skew (63/2.8 and the 32-64/34 zoom, the 120/4 is symmetric), but many vendors have such issues. Still, given the price of the system, I expect more. The lenses look nice but I wonder what the quality of the innards is like, and how rigorous the alignment can be, and whether it will deviate over time.

Three Pines, Lee Vining Canyon
f9 @ 1/12 sec, ISO 100; 2017-04-05 07:21:21
GFX 50S + GF63mmF2.8 R WR @ 50mm (63mm)

[low-res image for bot]

Larry J writes:

Just wanted to compliment you on the splendid Lee Vining creek photo. I can just imagine it printed 48" on the long side, hung and properly lighted. Beautiful image.

DIGLLOYD: yes, it should hold up beautifully at 48 inches (1.22 meters). It really looks fantastic on an iMac 5K filling the screen... the detail and pixel quality right into the dark tones is really beautiful. I look forward to seeing 8K displays arrive, which is one reason I am publishing my medium format work at full-res. I also look forward to a 75 to 100 megapixel image sensor, see next note.

Dr S writes:

If Fuji were to be able to correct via firmware (don't know if that is even a possibility) their AF anomalies, and correct focus shift, would the system rise to a "reference" standard for Lloyd Chambers? BTW it also seems that moiré from your examples can be a pesky issue at times.

DIGLLOYD: yes—the sensor is fabulous, setting aside the severe moiré issues which may make the camera problematic for some professionals, be it product photography, architecture, fabrics and clothing, etc.

The GFX moiré is as strong as I’ve seen with any camera (and shown in most of my examples), and may stem from Fujifilm’s custom sensor design that enhances sharpness. IMO, it is critical to get to a 100 megapixel sensor if only to reduce the moiré issues.


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