Fuji XT-2 and Fuji 50-230 lens

Discussion in 'Fujifilm Cameras' started by SquarePeg, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Much to my annoyance, I have had almost no time to shoot since getting the XT-2 a few weeks ago! When I did finally get some shooting time, I quickly realized that I needed more reach for my upcoming trip than the kit 18-55 f/2.8-4 that came with. I was going to get the Fuji 55-200 f/3.5-4.8 @ $699 but when I looked to see if it was available used, I came across a 50-230 f/4.5-6.7 for just under $200. I went over my budget when I bought the XT-2 so I couldn't really justify anything more expensive until I sell some of my Nikon gear. Reviews on the lens were decent for use outdoors in good light which is what I need it for. I thought I'd give it a shot before shelling out the extra $500 for the newer and heavier 55-200. Since lightening my load was a big part of my move to mirrorless, I was ok with the plastic build. This thing weighs nothing at all and I could put it in a pocket and forget it's there! I bought it from Adorama so the option to return it if I didn't like it made trying it out virtually risk free. It does have OIS. No aperture ring so you have to set it with the command dial but I didn't have any problem getting it set as I wanted.

    What a steal this thing is! While I did have to bump up the ISO, the XT-2 handles that so well that it makes this lens a viable option for outdoor shots! It even handled some mid level action (softball).

    BTW - loving the XT-2 so far. I can't believe the jpegs need so little editing in post. I always edit!!! I would be able to crop these on an iPad using Apples included Photos software or Snapseed and be done. I think I sharpened a few (mostly unnecessary but I had to do something) and cropped. That is pretty much it except for my current obsession with vignettes.

    Here are a few examples with the 50-230. The softball ones are all cropped at least 50% except for that last one. Not perfect but for the price, very nice!!!!

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    Testing out the lens at full zoom:

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    Indoors hand held high ISO (10,000):

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    All in all, very happy with this. Did not have a lot of issues hunting for focus. I'll eventually get a better zoom but for now, while I'm learning the XT-2, I'm happy with this.



     
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  2. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Pretty good performance for such an affordable lens, no? Who'da thunk it, fifteen years ago! Digital cameras have come a long way...good colors, good dynamic range, to the point that even SOOC .JPG images are now acceptable...I think back to the days of the Nikon D100 and flat, unacceptable, sickly-looking SOOC .JPG images, and sloooooooow raw file decoding with Nikon Capture, no .NEF support from Adobe at first,etc...and I recall from that same era the Fuji S1 Pro: one of the first "affordable" d-slr cameras, with better SOOC color than Nikon! Seems like things have improved markedly since then!
     
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  3. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I'd love to be able to compare the jpeg to the raw files but my Elements 11 version of ACR won't work on the XT-2 files. I was putting off upgrading to the Adobe CC monthly membership until I came across something I couldn't do with my bought and paid for PSE11 and this could be it. However, the quality of the jpegs makes me wonder if I even need to do that.
     
  4. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have this lens. I started with Fuji by buying an X-A3. Adorama had a deal that allowed adding the 50-230 to the kit for $100. Naturally, I included it. I ended up returning two A3's because the hot shoes didn't work but I kept the telephoto zoom. It really is quite good. I agree with you. Good choice. I wish I had the A3 kit lens because the wide end of the range is 16mm instead of 18mm but I have the 18-55 like yours. Here is a shot I made with the 16-50 at the widest setting.

    Have you tried updating your Elements? I'll bet there is a camera raw routine for the T2.
     

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  5. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Wow at $100 that was quite a great deal! I'm ok with the 18-55, I'm not much for shooting wide- much prefer the 50+ focal range

    There are no pending updates for PSE11. I scoured the web and there are options but none for ACR right now unless you have Adobe versions that are 2014 or later. I tried the Fuji Silkypix software but it's confusing to me. With these jpegs the only thing I'll miss is the ability to lift the shadows and I can do some of that post process right in camera.

    Maybe I'll take that $10/month that I would have been paying Adobe for the next 10 years and put it toward a Fuji prime or two.
     
  6. jcdeboever

    jcdeboever TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I know, right? I have seen a lot of images from that lens and they are excellent. @DarkShadow has popped off some great bird shots with it on his XT10. You can go into your menu and bump the sharpness to +2 and forget about ever needing to sharpen anything. These shots have excellent color saturation, clarity, and micro contrast.
     
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  7. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Another option would be to buy a newer copy of elements. My version is 13 and I have all the Fuji camera raw routines including the new A3. You can buy version 15 on Amazon for $59.95
     
  8. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    You note further on in the thread that you tried the Fuji supplied version of SilkyPix. It's worth your effort to pursue that further as SilkyPix does a better job with Fuji RAF files than Adobe. Now that you've switched to Fuji don't invest in any additional Adobe processing software for your RAF files without first exploring other options and making sure you're going to be happy with the results you get from Adobe. A lot of Fuji users are happy using Adobe software for their RAF files but a lot of other Fuji users prefer non-Adobe alternatives. Your X-T2 has a Fuji X-Trans III sensor and Adobe has a well documented "issue" with X-Trans sensors. Many Fuji users are unhappy with Adobe's demosaicing of the X-Trans CFA.

    So if you do want to delve into raw file processing for your X-T2 you have a homework job to do that's more complicated than for most cameras with classic Bayer CFAs. Many Fuji users prefer for raw RAF demosaicing:
    Iridient
    Capture One
    Raw Therapee
    SilkyPix
    Photo Ninja

    A very good alternative for Photoshop at an excellent price is Affinity Photo. Paired with one of the above options you could continue to avoid the $10.00 per month (or the upgrade cost of Elements) and get arguably better results.

    Joe
     
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  9. DarkShadow

    DarkShadow Birdographer Supporting Member

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    Nice pictures and congrats.The lens works great worth every penny.Sadly I let my fuji X-T10 with two lenses 16-50mm and 50-230mm go for some cash for a soon to be Nikon DSLR body Upgrade, My Raw Buffer of 18 on the D7200 has gotten on my last nerve.BTW the lens is sharp wide open to through the entire focal range, at least mine was.
     
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  10. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Sorry to hear you decided to go backward in your system choices. ;) Calm down, I'm kidding.
     
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  11. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    RIFFING ON what Ysarex wrote: back in 2007, I bought a full version of SilkyPix, and also a full version of a then-common raw file converter known as Bibble, or in my case MacBibble (for Mac OS computers). It was interesting...SilkyPix was **the** converter that solved the then most-challenging camera, the Kodak 14n full;-frame and it's many imaging issues. My experience back then was to shoot my Nikon D2x, and my Fuji S2 pro, and my Canon 5D and to then do simple batch-process developing of the raw files using Adobe software, Nikon software, Fuji's own raw file converter, and Silkypix.

    It was interesting, to see how different raw file processing applications handled the files! There were many situations in which SIlkypix did a marvelous job processing Canon and Fuji files; on Nikon files, the Nikon Capture 4.1 software did extremely well, while Adobe's conversions were typically "okay", but not fabulous.The Fuji S2 Pro files were typically best from SIlkypix, with MacBibble a close second, although, at times, the rendering of the Fuji .RAF image information was handled brilliantly by MacBibble.

    The earlier Fuji cameras used a most-unusual, non-typical sensor layout/design, and Fuji's own EX Converter was GREAT: Adobe's ACR engine at that time was abysmally poor on fine details, and high-frequency diagonals, as well as not getting the nuanced colors I wanted. Silkypix at that time rendered my files with a "certain something"; I recall one day's shoot that had many shots done in summertime open shady conditions; SIlkypix, more than the others, handled that day's shots beautifully.

    Seeing multiple camera RAW files, each developed by a different raw converter, over about a two-week time frame, every day, showed my just how critical the raw file development can be! SOmetimes one app produced a ***markedly better*** photo! Not always, but in some conditions, one app was awful, while others were good, and one would be the clear winner.

    Anyway...a lot of writing, but it's worth it to prove an important point: there is a HUGE amount of our photographic results that depends on the image devloping software, and how it reads and interprets and then outputs that RAW file data! it is worth it to try MORE than "just Adobe"software, espcially for the Fuji cameras. MY feeling is that Adfobe maximizes its output for Nikon and Canon cameras, and lets the other brands fall into a less-than-optimized state of performance.

    Irridient Developer has been one I've heard a lot of Fujistas rave about, but my own experience with SilkyPix, and the way SIlkypix was able to solve the Kodak 14n "Italian Flag" color effect is something that made me very impressed with what their company offered.
     
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  12. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    So yes, and I'll add a little more. This can be a very hot button topic that has spawned numerous shall we say passionate threads in various Fuji related forums over the years. First I'll say this: When someone asks me what software they should use for photo processing my answer is always quick and sure: Lightroom -- period. There are a few things that will qualify my response, Fuji X-Trans is one. Peg has just discovered that Fuji SOOC JPEGs are excellent -- problem solved and you can ignore the RAF files. But if you want to go there with the raw files then Fuji's unique CFA pattern for the X-Trans sensor becomes an issue. X-Trans has benefits but like most things that seem to be an improvement you always have to ask, "so what's the downside?"

    Nearly all other cameras use a Bayer array -- they're all in that sense the same and Bayer array demosaicing is so well established that we don't see really big variations one raw processor to the next. They all do at least a very good job. Then along comes Fuji and because the demosaicing required for the X-Trans CFA is so different we find a pretty wide variance in output one raw processor to the next. To a degree we're talking about personal preference as much as about better and worse. The biggest variation involves how well each raw processor renders fine detail from the X-Trans CFA. If we look at the extreme ends of that continuum the difference is pretty substantial.

    So Fuji RAF users should be happier than most photogs that the software vendors tend to offer trial downloads. Unfortunately a lot of time comparing results is in order to find a solution you're happy with.

    Joe
     
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