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Fujinon XF 55-200 mm f/3.5-4.8 R LM OIS review
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In early 2018, I bought the Fujinon XF 55-200 mm f/3.5-4.8 R LM OIS lens. Since then, I’ve taken thousands of pictures with it. And I’ve meant to write a review for it for a very long time. But something has always managed to get in the way. But, finally, here it is. Without a doubt, this is one piece of gear X-series owners should consider.
This lens gives you bang for your buck. It isn’t a Red Badge zoom, but don’t let that deceive you. The Fujinon XF 55-200 mm is a solid allrounder. The image quality and lightweight make it a winner.
Sure, there are superior products. But, for those on a budget, there isn’t much better. I wouldn’t be without it. If this lens fits your needs, you should get it.
Why is the Fujinon XF 55-200 mm so good?
- It’s reasonably light – the 55-200 weighs 75 grams less than my 16-55. That’s a big difference.
- It’s not big – this is one zoom you will find space for in your camera bag.
- It’s an affordable lens that gives quality pictures. For about US$700, it is excellent value.
- It has OIS – no more to be said. The stabilizer is satisfactory.
- It controls vignetting and chromatic aberrations very well.
- The bokeh is excellent.
- Even though plastic makes up a large of this lens, it is all quality. The 55-200 doesn’t feel cheap.
- Autofocus is very quiet.
Weak points of the Fujinon XF 55-200 mm
- Variable aperture.
- It can focus slowly.
- Not a first choice for shooting in low light as it will hunt. In this case, it is often better to focus manually.
- Not weather resistant.
- I don’t believe a native teleconverter for it exists. However, the Fringer EF-FX Pro II Lens Mount adapter is available for people with Canon lenses.
- The minimum focus distance is 1.1 meters, but many lenses in this class have the same limitation.
- With 200 mm being the longest it can zoom out to, it doesn’t have a long reach.
What have I used the Fujinon XF 55-200 mm for?
- Modeling events
- Birding (but there are better lenses for this)
- City/Landscapes (I often use it to shoot Mount Fuji from Tokyo)
Fujinon XF 55-200 mm technical specifications:
- Mount Type – Fujifilm X
- Focal Length – 55 to 200 mm
- Lens construction (elements/groups) – 14 /10
- Angle of view – 29.0 – 8.1°
- Number of diaphragm blades – 7 (rounded diaphragm opening)
- Maximum aperture – f/3.5 – 4.8
- Minimum aperture – f/22
- Minimum focus distance – 1.1 meters/3.7 feet
- Max magnification – 0.19 x (telephoto)
- Weight – 580 g
- Dimensions – 75 mm (wide) x 118 mm / 176 mm (telephoto)
- Filter size – 62 mm
- Stabilization – Yes
We could argue that others are better, but the Fujinon XF 55-200 mm gives great value for money. The main thing holding it back is it is a little slow and its variable aperture. Some people mightn’t also like the lack of weather resistance. But if those things were improved, it would cost more. I’ll keep things as they are.
I wouldn’t recommend this lens for indoor sports photography. It can do it in a pinch, but the 50-140 mm f/2.8 might be better. That lens is about US$1600, though.
There is also the 100-400mm Fujifilm, which has far more reach. But it’s not a superfast lens, either. And it costs about $2000.
The 55-200 is a great zoom lens, despite its shortcomings. I’ve shot thousands of pictures with it. It has served me well.
Buy the Fujifilm 55-200 mm lens on Amazon now