- Extremely small, lightweight and well-built
- Quite sharp over the majority of the frame right from f/2.8 and very good across the frame at all apertures.
- Excellent control of chromatic aberration
- Good distortion control
- Manual focus throw is well calibrated
- Autofocus is a bit loud, average in speed and can fail to find focus sometimes in low light
- No aperture ring
- Relatively long minimum focus distance
- A little expensive given the modest maximum aperture
Overall, the Fujinon XF 27mm f/2.8 is a pleasant lens to use and a great option when you want the smallest possible package for your Fuji X camera. It pairs especially well with the tiny X-M1, creating a very portable package capable of very good image quality.
The 27mm f/2.8 is sharp at most any aperture, and while the edges are a little softer than the center, they are plenty sharp enough for most any use. This little pancake controls chromatic aberrations and fringing extremely well, and I feel that overall image quality is quite good, though bokeh is rather unremarkable.
Ultimately, if you want a very small lens with very good image quality in a nice all-purpose focal length, the XF 27mm f/2.8 will fit the bill quite nicely. I was left wanting for a few things, however. For the $450 asking price, I would have much rather seen a faster aperture, as an f/2.8 prime lens isn’t exactly a speed demon. I would have much preferred this to be an f/2.0 or even f/2.4 lens given the price. I also lament the loss of the aperture ring on the lens, though I somewhat understand its removal due to the limited space on the lens barrel. I also ran into the lens’ minimum focus distance fairly regularly.
I think for most users, the 35mm f/1.4 is a more useful lens, given the two full stops faster aperture, better bokeh and aperture ring, but if you prefer a little wider view and need the smallest lens you can get for the Fuji X system, then the 27mm is your lens.
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