FUJI'S POCKET ROCKET
On the first few occasions of using this lens, I had to look worryingly over my shoulder every now and then because the quality of this lens, for the price it retails for, is simply a steal. I was sure I was sold the lens at an incorrect price and I was being hunted down by the camera store manager who had since put out flyers of my mug allover town. Fortunately, I escaped a run-in with law enforcement, as it turns out, I did pay the correct price.
I don't delve too much into the technical elements of the lenses as my purpose is to give you an opinion from a real world user perspective. The images from this lens are nice and sharp, have a lovely contrast to them and overall there's a nice tonality to everything. Everything you would not expect from a lens in this price category. From my real world use, I find it's a very capable lens suitable for street photography and just about anything really bar macro work. From my time with it so far, I've found it to be plenty sharp, easy to carry around on an X-Pro2 body and focuses fast and accurately.
For your hard earned money, Fuji are giving you a premium feeling (built from metal) weather resistant, incredibly fast focusing lens in a lightweight and compact package. You'll find an aperture ring, which is solid and has in between clicks to help guide you through the range and a nicely dampened focusing ring. There is a nice unexpected weight to the lens
The only negative is that the metal lens hood which complements the lens perfectly adding a nice finishing touch lens/camera combo, is not provided with the lens but is sold separately at a grossly overpriced £50 here in the UK. Fuji are kind enough to provide a plastic lens hood in the box, which does the job but is a feeling akin to Bentley providing your new continental with wheels made out of play dough.
As you will see from the sample images below, there is a lovely contrast to the images you get straight from the camera. It's plenty sharp at f2, ever so slightly sharper as you progress to f2.8 and relatively the same from f4 as you progress through the range sharpening up at the corners slightly. I mostly use it wide open at F2 with zone focusing and rarely does it miss focus. Yes, it's sharp and fast but putting that aside, it's the rendering that makes this lens special, just like its f1.4 stable mate, there is something magical in the results. The focal length + the rendering of images + the fujifilm colour palettes, all add to a spectacular lens which at the current price (and better if you're buying used) is nothing short of spectacular.