« Sunday Support Group: That Unicorn Lens | Main | Open Mike: If You Like Light (OT) »

Tuesday, 06 July 2021


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

I had the original Fuji 27mm six years ago, when I owned an X-A1 (which had no viewfinder). Knowing the virtue of this lens I waited until the new X-E4 was available in chrome and with the aperture-ring 27mm as a $200 kit lens. It was the miniature trap-hood which sold me. For street-walkers like me this is the perfect combo.

Hi Mike

A small but cool thing about the Fujinon: this new version is weather resistant.

On the new Nikon throwback camera for the new lens. The FM/FM2 were "Full Frame". Why isn't this one? Nikon making nostalgia can't even make it right.

All said and done the Fuji is an APS lens while the Nikon is full frame. The Fuji has a right to be smaller. This is a good subject though. Once upon a time I did not mind larger cameras and lenses but now they seem, well just too much ya know?

I can't resist, Mike. I'll add my two cents of snark for Nikon. The Series E 28/2.8 (the optics of which became the AF Nikkor from 1986-95) remains the most compact and lighest of its kind from Nikon: 150 grams/5.3 Oz in weight and 6.8mm shorter than the new SE (hmm, SE versus Series E, both budget lenses, I wonder where Nikon may have looked for nomenclature;-)). I will give them some props for getting nine elements into that space versus the five of the Series E, and it will undoubtedly blow the older lens away optically...but ultra-compact? Marketing hoopla.

Surely, the question should be which one takes better photographs? Far more interesting than size, to a person like me who owns, and uses, both Fuji X and Nikon Z systems. By the way, I have the original iteration of the Fuji pancake 27mm lens, and have never used it much because I find that the design quirks makes it difficult to use, for me, in the context of the Fuji X system.

That is the only AIS lens I have kept; it just works and I could never justify replacing it with an autofocus version. All the others have been sold.

To me, the Z fc is “form-over-function” when compared to the minimalist elegance of the a6400 and 35/2.8 T* lens:

Or, to price-match the SE lens, the Samyang 35/2.8AF:


The 'almost comical-looking' lens hood on the Fuji XF 27mm looks identical to the one supplied with my Voigtlander 40mm Ultron.

I do agree with this optimization of lens design for the format - otherwise what benefits would you get from going mirrorless / smaller sensor?

However, on the flip side, I wouldn't do that at the expense of ergonomics. As much as I like the Panasonic 20/1.7, the mismatch of this on a larger body (than say the GF/GX/GM series) as well as missing an aperture ring has pushed me to the Panasonic 15/1.7. Which is unfortunate, because I really do like the 15/1.7.


I am very much a fan of these small, sharp contemporary primes, Mike. I have (at least) one for each system I own, even medium format. For examples, the Fujifilm GF 50mm f/3.5 R LM WR for the GFX system and the Hasselblad XCD 45mm f/4 P for the XCD System are each relatively economical small lenses optimized for their respective platforms. And they’re each excellent generalists. I speculate that advancements in computer-aided lens design techniques and coatings have enabled these “pancake” style lenses to shed many of the negative traits they had (fall-off, edge blur, flare) common to their genre in olden film days.

Btw, the new version of the Fuji XF 27mm isn’t just smaller and sporting a tiny hood; it’s also weather-resistant (the “WR” designation), making it worth an update for older model owners who have weather resistant X bodies.

Back in the early 1980s, Nikon had a small number of economy lenses, labeled the "E" series. They were released when it came out with its Nikon EM economy SLR, priced below the FM and FE, themselves seen as amateur standard cameras of a somewhat lesser build quality, the first non-professional bodies to bear the "Nikon" label like the big Nikon F or F2. Back then, I could afford only the Nikon E series 28/2.8 lens priced at $80, which was smaller and lighter than the Nikkor AIS equivalent.

No matter. It turned out to be an excellent performer, as did the inexpensive 75-150/3.5 which I bought a few months later. Looking at it now, it is very well built, by modern standards, and like my AI and AIS lenses, has held up over decades of use.

Re Discontinuation of older Nikon lenses, I suspect they were part of the products that Nikon Produced in their Sendai Factory which they announced would cease manufacturing Cameras late last year.
The older all metal lenses probably have little in common with newer production lines.
Sad to see, but you really can't fault them from a business perspective.

Re the new 28mm, I'm not at all troubled boy the fact that it covers full frame, I think it makes sense that it fits all their all their newest cameras and is relatively small on either, --as long as its performance is good on both formats, and build quality is adequate.

The Fuji lens pictured here reminds me of my 1 Nikkor 10mm lens, which I thought worked well on my Nikon V2 camera. I think it might be interesting to add that V2 and 10mm prime combination to the left of the Fuji in the comparison photo here, and add the Z6 or Z7 with this new Z 28/2.8 Nikkor to the right of the Zfc. The Fuji and Zfc (as well as the Z50, which I think is a wonderful little camera) strike a nice size and image quality balance for the price range.

My opinions of my AiS 28/2.8 are that it is a great lens, but it gained its reputation on the results it offers at close focus distances. I wouldn't say it's better than many of the other 28mm Nikkors when focused to infinity. And it's never autofocused well on any of my Nikon cameras. :)

The size of the new Z 28/2.8 SE is probably about right for me. Being close in size to my AiS 28/2.8 tells me it's similar in size to the Z 16-50 on my Z50, and that's about a perfect size for a nicely compact camera.

As for the Zfc being a Fuji copy, all I see is my Nikon FM in its styling. Indeed, there was a gap of several years between the end of FM3A production and the Df, but the lineage is there all of the way back to the rangefinders. Looks good to me, anyway.

The new Fuji 27 might push me back into the XF camp - I currently have no digital camera other than my iPhone and a couple of old Olympus (pre E1) digicams lying around. Somewhere.

When I had the XPro-1 my favourite lens was the Zuiko 28/2.8 via adapter - gorgeous rendering in b&w, which is mostly how I used it. I’ve been thinking about jumping back in with the XPro-3 now that they supposedly have fixed all the control buttons/dials issues that drove me crazy. I’d have to sell some gear to justify it.

The comments to this entry are closed.



Blog powered by Typepad
Member since 06/2007