Fuji camera gear selection 2013 vs 2017 (part 1: lenses)

When I last travelled to Nepal the Fuji X system had recently launched and there were few lenses to choose from. I still agonised over what lenses to pick which seems funny looking back now as I had a lot less lenses to choose from back then.

So many choices!

I finally went with the following selection:

  • X-Pro 1 body
  • 35mm f1.4 lens
  • 18mm f2 lens
  • Sigma 100mm f2.8 macro lens (manual only)

It was a pretty well rounded setup as I had a wide angle, a portrait lens and a telephoto lens which I felt covered everything I would need. In the end the 18mm and the 35mm were clearly my most used lenses. The 100mm was used for one day only and was a bit of a waste.

Over the years since then I slowly transitioned to travelling almost exclusively with my X100S. I’ve grown very accustomed to my 23mm (35mm equivalent) field of view and I feel it covers most situations I run into. However for this trip I’ve decided to go back to a multi-lens setup as I will be travelling with my X-Pro2 and would love the flexibility of being able to swap lenses.

I know I will be taking the following items for sure:

  • X-Pro 2 camera
  • Rokinnon 12mm f2 manual lens
  • Fuji 23mm f2 lens

This has me well covered for wide angle shots and most travel photos. the 23mm can also be used as a portrait lens in a pinch but I’d prefer to have something longer for that purpose. I have though about also taking the 35mm as it is a very fast lens and great for portraits but I feel like the difference between that and the 23mm is not huge.

Now I need to figure out how to get these shots!

My biggest struggle now is covering the telephoto side of things. I plan on going on a mini safari during this trip and also going up to the Himalayas to see the sunrise so having a long-ish telephoto would be very useful. The possible options I have are:

Sigma 100mm f2.8 macro lens.

Cons:
Not the sharpest, not the fastest, no autofocus, a bit too long for portraits.

Pros:
It is relatively light and allows me to do macro work if the need arises.

Rokinon 135 mm f2

Cons:
Heavy, not very flexible use, no autofocus, limited portrait work.

Pros:
Tac sharp, very fast, that BOKEH!

Fuji 50-140mm f2.8

Cons:
Heavy, expensive, not the fastest lens

Pros:
Flexible, Image stabilised, can be used as all round portrait and landscape lens, very sharp.

As you can guess I am leaning towards the 50-140 lens. My biggest problem is the extra kilo of weight it adds. A kilo might not sound like much but when you’re lugging it up a mountain, it makes a big difference!

I’m still not sure which way to go so if you have any opinions, please let me know as I’d love some help!

In my next post I’ll cover the accessories I’ll be taking to help me get the images I need and also what I’ll be using this time around to blog while on the road.

 

 

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