One of my absolute favorite lenses is the Fujinon 90mm f/2! It’s super sharp, plenty bright, great bokeh, and just lovely image quality. Technically speaking, the lens is near perfection, and practically speaking, it does nothing but produce lovely pictures. You can read my full review of the Fujinon 90mm f/2 lens here. I don’t want to rehash what I’ve already said, but instead convey why this is one of my absolute favorite lenses.
I purchased my Fujinon 90mm f/2 about three years ago. I had read that it was one of Fujifilm’s best portrait lenses, and I was going to be doing some portrait photography, so I bought it for that purpose. I had intended to sell it afterwards, but after I used it there was no way that I was going to sell it—it was love at first click! All of the great things that I read about it turned out to be completely true.
90mm is full-frame-equivalent to 135mm, which once was a very common focal-length, but it’s not really in vogue anymore. It’s not quite long enough for sports and wildlife photographers, and it’s too long for a lot of other purposes. Even portrait photographers might prefer a shorter focal-length with a larger maximum aperture. 135mm can be a bit challenging to use, but also very rewarding.
Robert Capa coined the phrase, “If your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” Robert probably wasn’t advocating the use of longer lenses, but actually taking a few steps closer; however, the Fujinon 90mm lens allows you to get closer without actually getting closer. It forces you to remove unnecessary elements from the frame, because they simply won’t fit—you can’t get it all in, so you have to be more purposeful with what you do and don’t include. That’s the challenge, but better pictures are the reward.
When Fujifilm introduced the 90mm f/2 in 2015, they likely had in mind that it would be popular among portrait photographers, and for sure it is! But I’m not a portrait photographer—at least not usually. While the lens is optimized for portrait photography, it is great for still-life, nature, urban, and many other circumstances. I use it most frequently for landscape photography.
The only negative comment that I have to say against the Fujinon 90mm f/2 is that it is a little hefty. It balances better on a camera like the X-T4 than X-E4, but I still use it frequently on smaller bodies. It’s not comfortable to carry around all day long. Aside from that, the 90mm lens is the epitome of the Fujinon quality that Fujifilm is renown for. I cannot imagine anyone being disappointed with the images captured through this glass.
The Fujinon 90mm f/2 can be challenging to use because of its focal-length, but if you take on that challenge you will be rewarded with wonderful photographs. That’s why I love it! If you are not a portrait photographer, this lens might not be on your radar, but it is worth owning anyway, as it is useful in many circumstances, and not just portraits. If you are a portrait photographer, this should be one of your top considerations. It retails for $950.
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