The Fujifilm XF 8mm f3.5 R WR is an ultra wide prime lens for the X-mount mirrorless system. Announced in May 2023 and costing around $800 or pounds, the XF 8mm becomes Fujifilm’s widest prime lens in the system to date, delivering coverage equivalent to 12mm that’s ideal for capturing expansive landscapes, huge architectural views and wide-field milky-way shots, not to mention capable of dramatic video whether you’re behind or in front of the camera.
It’s not the first XF lens to deliver 8mm – that honour went to the XF 8-16 f2.8 zoom back in mid 2018. But the new XF 8mm is a considerably smaller, lighter and more affordable proposition for those who don’t need the zoom or f2.8 aperture. In the video below I’ll give you a quick tour around and demo of the lens, but if you prefer to read the written highlights, keep scrolling!
Measuring 68mm in diameter, 53mm long and weighing just 215g, the XF 8mm really is a compact, lightweight lens you’ll barely notice carrying around, and which balances easily on a gimbal. Compare that to the 8-16 which is over twice as long and weighs almost four times more. It’s also comfortably smaller than the 10-24.
The WR in the title standards for weather resistance, including a rubber grommet at the mount.
The design is pretty simple with a clicky aperture ring closest to the barrel, running from f3.5 to f22 in one third increments and with a button to lock it in an A position for body-based control if preferred.
Alongside this is a narrow but smooth manual focusing ring, after which you’re already at the end of the barrel and the 62mm filter thread. Yep, the ability to mount standard screw-in filters on an ultra-wide lens without mucking around with third-party accessories. This alone will make the XF 8mm a popular option for long exposure landscape photographers and videographers alike, both of whom rely on neutral density filters. Fujifilm also supplies a bayonet hood with the lens.
The optics consist of 12 elements in nine groups, with a nine-bladed diaphragm system, and the closest focusing distance is an impressive 18cm from the focal plane, or just a few cm from the front of the lens itself. The autofocus motors are also quick and quiet in operation.
I had a chance to try out the lens on the X-S20 body launched alongside it, so before wrapping-up this first-looks video, I’ll share some of the results I got with the combination.
As a fan of ultra-wide lenses, and an existing owner of the XF 10-24, I expected to like the XF 8mm and haven’t been disappointed in my time with it so far.
I love the compact size and light weight, making it an easy walkaround companion. Sure the f3.5 maximum aperture isn’t going to deliver much in the way of shallow depth of field effects nor match brighter lenses for astro work, but it’s allowed the lens to meet the size, weight and price point.
I’m particularly pleased to find a standard – and actually surprisingly modest sized – filter thread, again making it an attractive option for both videographers and long exposure photographers, and all will appreciate the weather sealing.
As for alternatives, there’s a bunch of third party 8mm lenses available in X-mount at a lower price, but they’re generally Fisheyes with considerable distortion, versus this XF 8mm which is a better-behaved ultra wide.
Spend a couple of hundred more and you could get Fujifilm’s own XF 10-24 f4 in its latest weather-resistant version, which may not reach quite as wide, but boasts a flexible zoom range and the benefit of optical image stabilisation. It’s a tough choice between these two, but for sheer fun and drama without breaking the bank, the XF 8mm is a really attractive addition to the lineup which will delight both photo and video shooters.Check prices on the Fujifilm XF 8mm f3.5 at B&H, Adorama, WEX UK or Calumet.de. Alternatively get yourself a copy of my In Camera book, an official Cameralabs T-shirt or mug, or treat me to a coffee! Thanks!