Fuji 7.1-28.4mm f/2-2.8 Super EBC Fujinon in X20

Fuji 7.1-28.4mm f/2-2.8 Super EBC Fujinon in X20

The standard zoom in the Fuji has a pretty impressive aperture and zoom range, but does it stand up to the chart?

The Fuji X20 is the second generation body of a compact range finder style point and shoot with premium build quality. It feels great in the hand with the mostly metal construction. The knobs are positive and there are tons of manual controls. The most confusing part is the power switch, you have to take off the front lens cap and twist the lens ring to extend it. The alternative is press and hold the playback button for a couple seconds. This way you don’t have to extend the lens if you are just going to review images or change settings.

Since this is primarily an optics review, please see my review review at Amazon and be sure to vote if you think it is helpful (or not).

The lens is labeled as a 7.1-28.4mm f/2-2.8 lens, with a field of view equivalence of 28-112mm in 135 format full frame. It is a beautiful looking lens, especially before you extend it. It is an 9 group, 11 element design with 3 aspherical lenses, 7 bladed diaphragm, and optical image stabilization. It has an incredibly close up macro function with a focus distance of 1cm from lens at 7.1mm, but this still doesn’t result in much magnifications since the field of view is pretty wide.

Optical Performance

So how does this little beauty of a lens perform?

7.1 mm

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DSCF7346_7.1 mm_1-8 sec at f - 4.0_YBR51_18_multi_cpp
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Please click on the tab you want to view. Only 1 tab may be active at a time. MTF, Distortion, and Lat CA data acquired using Imatest

11.7 mm

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DSCF7369_11.7 mm_1-8 sec at f - 4.0_YBR51_18_multi_cpp
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Please click on the tab you want to view. Only 1 tab may be active at a time. MTF, Distortion, and Lat CA data acquired using Imatest

28.4mm

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DSCF7382_28.4 mm_1-8 sec at f - 4.0_YBR50_18_multi_cpp
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Please click on the tab you want to view. Only 1 tab may be active at a time. MTF, Distortion, and Lat CA data acquired using Imatest

Comments on the Results

This sensor is as large as most point and shoots come, at 2/3″, but it is still tiny compared to a 4/3 or APS-C sensor. The Fuji has a Nyquist frequency of 3000 LW/PH (number of pixels on the vertical edge), which is 1500 LP/PH or 227 LP/mm (6.6 mm high sensor). For my 20 MP Samsung the Nyquist frequency is 3648 LW/PH, or 1824 LP/PH = 117 LP/mm (15.6 mm high sensor), so the X20 is pretty demanding on lenses (twice that of the 20 MP APS-C camera).

So what I am saying with all the above mumbo-jumbo: the results you see are steller. It is strongest in the standard focal length range where it basically out-resolves the sensor at all settings. At the wide angle end the extreme corners are noticeably soft wide open and improve some stepping down, this is slightly outside of the range where I measure (see the distortion graph for measured points), but even just slightly into the frame it looks excellent across the frame. As typical for a kit lens it is weakest at the telephoto end, but still pulls pretty good numbers, especially stepping down 1 stop.

Distortion is pretty minimal, ranging from 0.38% barrel to about 0.27% pincushion. With this low of a value I wonder if Lightroom is removing it.

Lateral CA is well controlled and a non issue, I am pretty sure this is being removed by Lightroom automatically as well. I don’t test longitudinal CA with this relatively deep depth of field kit lens.

Flare resistance is average for a standard zoom. You will see aperture ghosts if the sun is in the frame.

I measured the corrected focal length to be 7.3mm based on 1:138 magnification at the wide end and 28 at the 28.4mm setting.

Pros and Cons

Bottom Line

This is one of the best kit lenses I have seen. It has a 4x instead of usual 3x zoom range, maintains a large aperture (even for small sensor class), and performs well at almost all settings. This is a great lens. You just have to like the X20, and remember it is still a small sensor. It isn’t going to give the same clarity at ISO 100 that an APS-C or full frame will give.

I have Fuji and Amazon to thank for getting to test this great camera, so please support them by buying it from Amazon: Fujifilm X20 12 MP Digital Camera with 2.8-Inch LCD (Black)

Gallery

Some sharpening and noise reduction on RAW images, a few were JPEG from camera. Sharpening was 33, radius 1.2, detail 33, masking 33 and NR of 17, rest default, LR 4.4. Originals are all available for download from Zenfolio, for personal evaluation use only.

The gallery images are © 2013 Eric Tastad, and may only be used for personal evaluation of the lenses. Click the play button and click “visit gallery” in the upper right to download full size images.

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  1. […] lens of the Fuji X20 is the subject of the latest Imatest testing at ER Photo Review. Since this particular lens is the only lens that can be used on the Fuji X20, it is of potential […]