XF30mm f2.8 R LM WR macro, I will call it XF30mm f2.8 here, was first teased in Fujifilm X Summit Omiya 2022 and then finally announced together with X-T5 on the Fujifilm X Summit Tokyo 2022. This lens also marked the “last of 10th anniversary of X mount” released in 2022.
Before I share further, I would like to thank Ms. Carmen, Marketing Manager of Fujifilm Singapore, for arranging and loaning the XF30mm f2.8 and X-E4 for this review. By the time this post was online, both the lens and camera unit had returned back to Fujifilm Singapore. Also, in this experience sharing, I tested with my X-T5 as well.
XF30mm f2.8 is the latest and the third macro lens in the Fujifilm lineup. At 45mm in full-frame equivalent, this focal length is unique for a life-size macro photography lens. That’s because typically when we think about macro lenses, they are usually about 100mm-ish focal length and shoot from a mid-range distance. Although there are manufacturers that create similar focal lengths to XF30mm, this is Fujifilm’s first of its kind.
Design and Build Quality
First things first, the design element of this lens resembles much like the XF50mm f2. From afar, I am sure not everyone can tell the difference between the two (unless using a silver XF50mm f2). If you take a closer look, the XF30mm is a tad taller but it comes with a smaller filter thread at 43mm as compared to 46mm on the XF50mm f2.
Among its macro siblings, it is the lightest. Weighing 195 grams against XF60mm 2.4 at 215 grams and XF80mm f2.8 at 750 grams. It is also the smallest (smaller than XF60mm by a bit).
The aperture ring is as clicky as most of the Fuji lenses out there. It comes with an A (Auto) Position Lock too if you prefer to have aperture control via the front command dial.
At wide open, the image quality from this lens is super sharp with great contrast. Even when shooting so close to the subject, the sharpness remains great and the details are well-preserved. I think “clinical sharp” is the best word to describe the optic of this lens.
Unlike harsh and messy bokeh in some lenses, I do love and appreciate how the glass renders beautifully with the fall-off being seamless. Also, I think this is an expectation from Fuji-designed lenses but I do not observe any chromatic aberration or vignetting in the photos.
As for sunny star, this lens doesn’t seem to give a sharp one, even at its smallest aperture. But this is not important in my opinion because what’s important is its macro capability, right?
I will split it into two parts to discuss this.
In the first part, its focus locked really quickly for the usual applications. Very similar to the new generation lens such as XF23mm f1.4 WR, etc, it just snaps onto the subject real quick. In this portion, I have no problem focusing both day and night. As for the cameras I have tested, it focuses fast on an X-E4 but it focuses even faster on the X-T5, which shows the power of the new X-Trans sensor and processor.
The second part, it has the typical macro lens characteristics when I shoot really close to the subject and under low light situations. I experienced a slight focus throw to infinity and back slowly before it locked to the subject. If you know how to recover from this situation quickly, then it will be fine.
Minimum Focus Distance
The Minimum Focus Distance is only 10cm from the sensor, the shortest among all the Fujifilm lenses and that includes the macro lenses (XF64mm f2.4 is 26cm and XF80mm f2.8 is 25cm). It can shoot very close to the subject if you wonder. So close to the extent that the lens hood is in its way if you mount the lens hood for protection, etc.
Surprisingly, this is the cheapest macro lens among the 3 Fujifilm macro lenses. At 599 USD, it is merely 50 USD cheaper than the XF60mm f2.4 (the first-ever macro lens from Fujifilm).
Who is this for?
This might be a good choice if you are a new photographer or looking for your first prime lens. It has a sweet focal length suitable for genres like street, documentary, journalism, portraits, animal portrait, cityscape, and landscape and also steps into the world of macro like insects, products, etc.
I love shooting with my XF80mm f2.8 especially when I shoot for products and portraits. That’s simply because of the sharpness and details that only a macro lens can deliver but it is not a cheap one and it is not the lightest prime lens.
Back to this lens, you do not need to be a macro lover to like this lens. Its MOD basically allows you to take a closer shot of your subject without worrying about having off-focus shots. It also has a focal length close to the “standard” prime lens. This brings out even more versatility in using this lens.
Last but not least, it is compact, and lightweight which makes it a great choice to bring out easily without burdening your shoulder.
In short, the XF30mm f2.8 is not the brightest prime lens among the Fuji lenses, but it is one of the most well-balanced and versatile lenses on the market.
1. All the shots taken here are shot by me.
2. Most of the shots are straight out of the camera with some shots edited via In-Camera Raw Processing.
3. The opinions are based on my experience. If there is any mistake, please kindly drop me a message and I will gladly make the amendment.
4. I reserve ownership of these images, if you wish to use my images, please notify me.
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