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Summary

Highly Recommended awardFujifilm's XF 18-55mm f2.8-4 is a general-purpose zoom for its X-mount mirrorless cameras, upon which it delivers a flexible 27-84mm equivalent range taking you from wide-angle to mild telephoto. The optical stabilisation smooths out the wobbles and the LM focusing is swift and silent, but what makes the lens stand out is its brighter than average f2.8-4 aperture. Compared to the f3.5-5.6 aperture of rival 18-55mm kit zooms, the Fuji version gathers between two thirds and a whole stop more light, allowing faster shutters, lower ISOs and shallower depth-of-field effects. It predates Fuji's broad adoption of weather-sealing, but otherwise provides a great balance of features and quality, which is why it's the most common X-series kit zoom. If you want f2.8 all the way to 55mm, go for the XF 16-55mm f2.8 and if you want a longer range, go for the XF 18-135mm. Both are also weather-sealed, but are larger and more expensive than the XF 18-55 f2.8-4.

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Fujifilm XF 18-55mm f2.8-4 review so far

Fujifilm’s XF 18-55mm f2.8-4 is a general-purpose zoom for its X-mount mirrorless cameras, and often bundled with bodies as a kit lens. Launched in September 2012, it delivers a flexible 27-84mm equivalent range taking you from wide-angle to mild telephoto, making it an ideal walk-around lens.

The 18-55mm focal length on cropped-frame / APSC bodies is very popular, but Fujifilm’s model outclasses rival brands with a faster aperture of f2.8-4, making it two thirds brighter at the wide-end and a whole stop brighter at the long-end than typical f3.5-5.6 versions. This in turn allows faster shutter speeds, lower ISO sensitivities for better quality and the potential for shallower depth-of-field effects.

The optical design consists of 14 elements in ten groups, an f2.8-4 focal ratio, seven aperture blades, a closest focusing distance of 40cm at the telephoto end, and optical stabilisation. The barrel measures 65mm in diameter, 70mm in length, weighs 310g and employs a 58mm filter thread. There’s no weather-sealing, but the Linear Motor (LM) focusing is swift and quiet which with the brighter than average focal ratio makes the XF 18-55mm a classier-than-average kit zoom. Want something cheaper? Consider the XC 16-50mm. Want the f2.8 aperture throughout the range and weather sealing? Go for the XF 16-55mm f2.8, albeit sacrificing optical stabilisation. Want a longer range with weather-sealing? Go for the XF 18-135mm. But as a Goldilocks option, the XF 18-55mm is hard to beat. Check out my sample images below!

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Fujifilm XF 18-55mm f2.8-4 sample images

Above: Model:X-T1, Shutter speed:1/600, Aperture:8.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T1, Shutter speed:1/420, Aperture:8.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T1, Shutter speed:1/480, Aperture:8.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:23.3 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T1, Shutter speed:1/200, Aperture:8.0, ISO Sensitivity:400, Focal length:35.8 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T1, Shutter speed:1/900, Aperture:4.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/170, Aperture:4.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:48.4 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/45, Aperture:4.0, ISO Sensitivity:1600, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/26, Aperture:4.0, ISO Sensitivity:800, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/900, Aperture:6.4, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:18.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/140, Aperture:8.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:31.5 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/750, Aperture:10.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:24.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/420, Aperture:9.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/600, Aperture:8.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/250, Aperture:14.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:18.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/280, Aperture:13.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:18.0 mm

 

Above: Model:X-T20, Shutter speed:1/100, Aperture:16.0, ISO Sensitivity:200, Focal length:55.0 mm

 

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