Fujinon XF 35mm F1.4 R

X-Pro1 still delivers

I do not use my X-Pro1 often but every time I shoot with it I’ll get some nice shots. The camera is quite slow but it has nice user experience (as I stated also for my Leica Digilux 2 in an earlier post) which is very important for me when I am shooting. Of course Fuji X system has some very nice lenses to work with. I have the beautiful XF 35/1.4 which is still very competitive lens even if it was the first one introduced in X system. I also have the XF 18-55mm/2.8-4 zoom which is nice if you want to take only one lens with you. It has a moderate size and great image quality, and its IS helps especially in indoor shooting. Its 27-82mm equivalent range is very nice for general shooting situations.

Kaapo’s portrait below was shot with XF 35/1.4 prime and church interior was captured with the XF 18-55 zoom lens.

Let me play PS4!

 

Church interiors
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Agents dancing

“Agents” was Kaapo’s dancing group’s performance this year. They did all the choreography themselves and decided the clothing, music and all. It was so great to see their joy and to be a proud father. There were altogether 13 different groups performing (about 70-80 children) and Kaapo’s group had all the boys! So, only two (2) boys. Dancing is a fantastic hobby also for boys, believe me.

Agents dancing

1/250, f/2, ISO 800

Gaming glow

Don’t let them play console or computer games too much. Interfere with some other things. Remember school work. Remember to go outside and feel the weather and nature. Thanks.

Gaming glow

Fuji X-Pro1 it is!

I have gone through lots and lots of shots taken with my cameras and after that process it seems quite clear to me that I am going to take my Fuji X-Pro1 with me to our vacation. Why so?

You really can’t beat the IQ of X-Pro1 and XF 35mm/1.4 combo with my other cameras. You can get nice thin DoF and so pleasing bokeh with that combo. I have always been little bit towards longer focal lengths so the 50 mm equivalent is a good general purpose lens for me. And I would like to see how versatile I could be just with one lens. It would be possible to take my Ricoh GR in addition to X-Pro1 but I have noticed that if I have got two cameras with me I almost never use them both. A zoom lens would of course be a wise solution but I actually hate zooming and love high-quality prime lenses. And I do not have a zoom for my X-Pro1 (I am not into getting one at the moment). I already have two batteries for my X-Pro1 which is great at vacation. What I should do is to buy an extra SD card though. I have now one 16 Gb and one 8 Gb cards but I should get another 16 Gb one. After that I will be all set up.

One more thing. My wife is a very keen photographer and she will have her Olympus XZ-2 zoom compact with her in our vacation. So I do not have to take photos of every happening and still those family moments will be captured.

I have been practicing the back-button focusing with my X-Pro1 and AF really seems to be considerably faster that way.

Here is one X-Pro1 shot for you to enjoy. 🙂

Bored to my photography

47mm

I really love the 47mm crop mode which Ricoh GR acquired in the latest firmware. The GR now has the native 28mm field of view and two crop modes, 35mm and 47mm. This really elevates this camera in the new level. The difference between 28mm and 35mm is not huge (in my mind) but 47mm is of course in a different league. What I noticed, though, was that I was using almost exclusively the 47mm crop after its introduction. That could be because of the excitement about this new feature or it could be because of my preference to longer than 28mm focal lengths. This made me think about this whole situation (again). If I am towards longer than 28mm focal lengths should I use (or take to our vacation) my Fuji X-Pro1 with the fantastic Fujinon 35/1.4 lens (50mm equiv.) instead of the GR? Better IQ because of no cropping made. Well, it seems that life is never easy when pondering about the gear… 🙂

Here are just few shots taken with the 47mm crop mode (Ricoh GR).

Nuts At the playground Autumn colors

Back to DSLR?

Here by the beautiful lake my thoughts are wandering around. In fact so much that I've been going through some DSLR option for myself! I have now the fantastic Ricoh GR which is so easy to take with me everywhere and it also has many cool features like TAv mode and snap focus system. Then I have of course my Fuji X-Pro1 which I also love – time to time. X-Pro1 produces wonderful shots if everything goes well. Focus is still hunting quite much in many instances. The only AF lens I have for it is Fujinon 35/1.4 R which of course is a fantastic piece of glass. The two other lenses I have for it are manual focus ones. I can decently focus by them but I've been graving for image stabilization so many times. It is quite a wobbly experience to use longer focal length MF lenses, like 135mm I have.

The GR comes for Pentax Ricoh group and I have thinking to get Pentax K-5 IIs for my DSLR to replace the X-Pro1. K-5 IIs has the TAv mode I love, nice in-body IS to stabilize the longer lenses, some nice MF focus aids, and of course nice set of physical buttons for adjustments. It is weather-sealed and still small in size. IIs variant is without antialiasing filter which is also nice feature. The K-5 IIs body is about 1200 euros and I would be able to purchase one in July. I would also buy an adapter for M42 screw mount lenses then and first test K-5 IIs with my manual focus Super-Takumars (which are Asahi Pentax lenses). Pentax has a very nice collection of prime lenses, e.g 77/1.8 which I would like to buy soon after selling my Fuji.

But. I am not sure yet about this. I mean not 100% sure. Only 95% sure.

It would be very nice to hear your opinions on this, dear readers.

In-camera B&Ws and related thoughts

I have mainly been shooting RAW with my X-Pro1 lately largely because of improved RAW support by LR 4.4. But I tested again (did this already with my earlier X-Pro1) in-camera B&Ws and this time exclusively in 1:1 format. Very cool indeed. I have adjusted highlight tones to +1, shadow tones in +2, and sharpening to +1. These settings increase contrast quite a much and give also additional punch to sharpening. Square format is very interesting one for the compositions. When doing this I am not cropping in LR at all and also otherwise use only very minimal adjustments. For example, I am not so worried about clipped highlights or shadow areas (of course I try to get the right exposure). It seems that little bit of a clipping give that certain wanted character for the shots. This approach may seem to be very limiting but actually I find it very nice approach. It gives more space to breathe. It is not limiting me at all. It frees my mind.

When shooting using the approach mentioned above led me to think cameras. This could be very dangerous thing to happen, I know. But anyways. I would be very happy with a very limiting camera. For example, a digital camera with a fixed prime lens having a B&W-only sensor. I know there is Leica Monochrom but it is way too expensive (and it uses interchangeable lenses which too are way too expensive for me). I would like to go one or two steps further from the Monochrom when speaking about limiting factors. Yes, B&W only but fixed prime lens and fixed image format (e.g. 1:1). Yes, just crazy. But I feel that kind of a camera less limiting than those with huge amount of customization. Just take the camera in your hands, compose, expose, and shoot.

Welcome back!

My Fuji X-Pro1 with Fujinon 35/1.4 lens arrived yesterday. Oh man it felt good. I really can’t understand why I sold it earlier this year. I felt that I was home when I was hold it again in my hands. So good feeling.

Both the camera body and the lens I purchased are used ones. But they really are in mint+ condition. I can’t find any marks of use from them. It is so nice that people keep their camera gear in fantastic condition. I do the same always for my camera gear.

Unfortunately, I had only very limited time to shoot with them yesterday evening. I just basically tested that everything was working properly. I am soon going to get two manual focus lenses for the X-Pro1. I am quite excited about them. But more about them later on…

This was shot with my earlier X-Pro1 and Fujinon 60/2.4.