Fujinon XF 100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + XF1.4X TC WR (Eng)

Categoria: English Pubblicato: Sabato, 23 Gennaio 2021 Scritto da Max Angeloni

Translated by Pietro Todaro


The XF 100-400 was the first "souped-up" telephoto lens in Fujifilm's X system.
Primarily designed for sports and nature photography, it immediately proved to be a functional and performing tool. Over the years it has benefited from all the advances that the Fujifilm system has made, both through the performance of the new cameras that hit the market and through the continuous implementation of the software that manages the autofocus system.
In fact, the 100-400mm has always represented a sort of “wild card” for all those photographic situations in which the use of an effective field of view telephoto lens is essential and brightness is not a priority.

L’XF 100-400 è stata il primo teleobiettivo “spinto” del sistema X di Fujifilm.
Pensato principalmente per la fotografia sportiva e naturalistica si è rivelato, sin da subito, uno strumento funzionale e performante. Con il passare degli anni ha beneficiato di tutti i passi avanti che il sistema di Fujifilm ha realizzato, sia attraverso le prestazioni delle nuove macchine fotografiche immesse sul mercato, che attraverso l’implementazione continua del software che gestiscono il sistema autofocus.
In effetti il 100-400mm, da sempre, rappresenta per tutti i sistemi una sorta di Jolly per tutte quelle situazioni fotografiche in cui è fondamentale l’utilizzo di un teleobiettivo dalla ampia escursione e la luminosità non rappresenta una priorità.
(Clicca qui per la versione in Italiano)


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 160, f/8, 1/210


Field Test
Let's start from what is obvious.
Pairing a generously weighted, bulky lens with a minimalist camera isn't the best choice in life.
Ergonomics and balance go down the pan.
My advice is to use the battery pack to satisfactorily balance everything.
After all, the basic philosophy of mirrorless cameras is just this. Light when you don't need useless weights and bulk, and balanced when size can be an advantage.
A modular system so to speak.
Furthermore, coupled with the X-T3, the boost function that the battery grip gives with the additional batteries can offer a plus that is difficult to give up.
Ok. Camera on, lens mounted… let's start shooting.


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR - Iso 320, f/5.6, 1/2500


Fujifilm X-T2, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 320, f/10, 1/1250


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 1000, f/8, 1/5000

I have abandoned the edge of the race track for years now. So don't expect pyrotechnic tests of motorcycles and racing cars.
And to be honest, I rarely engage in naturalist photography.
So why did I buy a super tele-zoom?
We will see it later.
For the moment let's go step by step..


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR - Iso 400, f/5.6, 1/8000


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 1000, f/8, 1/2000


The first time I tried the Fujifilm XF 100-400mm was with the Fujifilm X-Pro2. After a few shots and for the ergonomic reasons mentioned above, I decided to postpone the first test until the X-T2 was released, which was estimated in about a couple of months from then.
I continue to affirm that the X-Pro is a fantastic camera for reportage. A couple of fixed lenses in your pocket and you can photograph the whole world. But if you buy it to use it with zoom and telephoto lenses, then this may indicate that your ideas are confused. Very confused.
But let's get back to the X-T2. The Fujinon XF 100-400mm immediately showed the new resources that Fujifilm X system users could finally access.
Of course ... the new functions of continuous autofocus were certainly not very simple and intuitive for everyone and, when the "squaring of the circle" was found, some hesitation always had to be taken into account.
So much so. However, Fujifilm users know very well that mother Fuji never leaves her users behind and thus, firmware after firmware, parring of camera and lens has seen its performance grow exponentially to date.
Performance so reliable that if you wanted to find something equivalent in the other brands, you would have to dig in your wallet in a much more substantial manner.


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 640, f/8, 1/1000


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 800, f/8, 1/1000

As far as the continuous autofocus settings that I prefer on my X-T3 (Firmware Ver.4.00) go, I prefer the Wide / Tracking (AF MF menu -> AF mode -> Wide / Tracking).
This more or less satisfies me with all “dynamic” photography situations and where I need more targeted settings I optimize them through the “AF-C Custom Settings” menu.
For all those who find these steps cumbersome, I would like to remind you that this system does not differ in any way from what is used with traditional sports reflex cameras.


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 160, f/9, 1/1000


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR - Iso 160, f/11, 1/2000


In any case, as I previously stated that there is also another reason why the Fujinon XF 100-400mm has become part of my kit.
The reason is the ability to flatten or compress the field of view.
This is a photographic aspect that, in certain situations, I really love.
It allows me to compose the image on several levels and the results that can be obtained would be impossible with wider focal lengths.
Considering that, with the XF 1.4X TC WR teleconverter, we can reach a field of view equivalent to 900mm on a 35mm format, with this said one can just imagine what creative opportunities could be available.
Obviously, with this combination, the maximum aperture decreases by one stop. Image stabilization can help us but only when we engage in static photographic situations.
But it must be clear that this solution can be adopted with the presence of good light.
Maybe one day an even more performing lens will come out, like a 200-400 F4, but it will certainly have a much higher price and dimension.


Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 5000, f/8, 1/125

Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 160, f/6.4, 1/1000

Fujifilm X-T3, XF100-400mm F4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR + 1.4x - Iso 250, f/8, 1/1000


Certainly, this lens alone cannot cover all the needs of those who, for work or pleasure, prefer to use rather high-performance telephoto lenses.
On the other hand, the Fujinon XF 100-400mm, can offer a wide range of options, without necessarily having to carry a heavy backpack full of lenses. We could be happy just by slipping a TC 1.4x into our pocket and devote all our attention only to our passion for photography.