A Review of the Fujifilm GF 80mm f/1.7 for Portraits

Fujifilm's medium format range doesn't have a huge selection of lenses, but it does have some utterly superb glass never the less. Their latest release has turned a few heads, but how good is it for portraiture?

The Fujifilm GFX medium format range is a real favorite with many photographers, myself included. One of the few drawbacks of the system is that there aren't as many lenses available as most full frame systems, which isn't overly surprising. However, Fujifilm has recently released a new prime lens for GFX bodies which has captured a lot of attention.

The Fujifilm GF 80mm f/1.7 R WR is the fastest medium format lens you can buy and a notable rival to the previously undisputed king of their portrait lenses, the 110mm f/2. There are a number of benefits to the 80mm over the 110mm. It's $500 cheaper, it's faster, it's wider, and it's lighter. The 80mm is 63mm on a full frame equivalent, which puts it between two of the most popular portrait focal lengths: the 50mm and the 85mm. Being fasterĀ andĀ wider than the 110mm (which is 87mm on full frame equivalent) means you're getting significantly more light to your sensor, which has value in a number of situations.

Side-by-side comparisons that I have seen so far have been close, with the 80mm arguably being the most desirable by small margins. However, the chromatic aberrationsĀ reported and seen in this video are a consideration and a drawback, albeit easily fixed in post.

What do you make of the GF 80mm? Have you tried it yet?

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Robert K Baggs is a professional portrait and commercial photographer, educator, and consultant from England. Robert has a First-Class degree in Philosophy and a Master's by Research. In 2015 Robert's work on plagiarism in photography was published as part of several universities' photography degree syllabuses.

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