Excellent lens for X-T5
Rated 5 out of 5
Purchased this lens for my X-T5. It is fantastically sharp even wide open, has good color and contrast, and, when the camera's autofocus settings are properly set, it focuses fast. I'm a still photographer, so I haven't used it for video. I usually shoot in single point autofocus mode, but found that the size of the focus box determines how fast the lens will focus, especially wide open. You have to adjust how fine your focus point is according to the subject.
Excellent optics, mediocre mechanics
Rated 3 out of 5
I own almost all of Fujifilm's best fast lenses, such as the 50mm f1.0 and the 90mm f2, as well as a lot of very bright lenses from Voigtlander, Laowa, 7Artisans, TTArtisan, and more - a lot of f1.0, f1.2, and f0.95. Optically, the Viltrox 75mm is incredibly impressive. The clarity and lack of fringing all the way to the corners, even in the worst torture tests (branches against the sky) is second to none. Also, the focal length is really convenient, a perfect sweet spot for a lot of work where the 50 or 56mm is too wide and the 90mm forces you to get too far away (which you might not be able to in cramped situations / studios).
And yeah, none of Fujifilm's lenses comes close to the bokeh, if that's what you want. The entrance pupil of this lens is way bigger than the 50mm f1.0, the 56mm f1.2, or the 90mm f2. And the focal length enables a subject distance that really helps with bokeh.
Mechanically, though, the aperture is very sluggish. When shooting in A mode with the aperture ring set to A and the lens stopped-down, it is laggy, and noticeably (and slowwwwwly) changes several times between sizes, both when I touch the shutter release and after I release. This makes the viewfinder or LCD panel blink repeatedly, which is incredibly annoying. I corresponded with Viltrox about this and they told me it's expected behavior. I compared to my Fujifilm 50mm f1.0 which sort of does the same thing, but lightning-fast, so it's essentially imperceptible. It's too bad the Viltrox's most noticeable characteristic in actual usage is this constant flickering. I hope they find a way to improve this.
Another note is that the auto/manual focus behavior is pretty weird. In order to change from A to M or vice versa, you have to operate the camera's settings and the physical switch on the lens in just the right sequence. This is documented, so it's definitely as-intended and not a problem with my copy.
The actual behavior in manual focus is very nice (I'm a huge manual-focus user, and actually rarely use autofocus). It's so good, it almost fools me into thinking it's not focus-by-wire. (It is focus-by-wire.) However, the focus direction is reversed from the way I like to configure my cameras in settings, and doesn't respect that setting. So in summary, I think Viltrox has designed an amazing optic, really outstanding and not inferior to the best Fujifilm glass available; but they are clearly not really implementing the FX-mount electronic protocol correctly; I guess they probably haven't licensed the protocol from Fuji and have reverse-engineered it with some bugs. And there's that issue with the aperture - I don't know if it's mechanical, electrical, or firmware, but it's irritating. So I grade this lens A+ for optics and B- for mechanical/protocol implementation. It's too bad it isn't just a mechanical lens with mount contacts like the newer Voigtlanders, that would be amazing. I'll keep the lens; it's usable despite the glitches, and the results are incredible, but as far as pleasure of usage, it's just not going to be a lens that delights.
Sharp, Smooth, and Silky
Rated 5 out of 5
From your friendly neighborhood film director who is an avid amateur not a pro photographer.
This glass sits on my X-T5 and takes some awesome images. Portraits are totally sharp with a silky bokeh. Landscapes are clean and bright. The edges hold well for me. Autofocus tracks fine. It's a little weighty but the X-T5 fits nicely in my hands without a grip so I'm super comfortable with it. At this price point this lens is a miracle.
Some silly nitpicks (and these are totally subjective)... I wish the aperture ring was more clicky. It eases in and out when stopping. I like the snap of the x100V lens. The autofocus switch feels like plastic (it is!) and doesn't snap as well. The focus ring also doesn't seems to represent the metal build of the rest of the lens.
These observations do not affect the imagery or even the overall experience. I just needed to be a little fussy or seem like a Viltrox/Fuji fanboy.
Conclusion... this lens is so smooth, it nears perfection (a 1.2!) If you have a Fujifilm X cam you should have this lens on it.
Rated 5 out of 5
I had read a lot of great reviews on this lens. I love Fuji lenses, especially the tiny Fujichrons, but I wanted to get a super fast telephoto prime and the Viltrox price point was perfect for my budget. I ran a few photo test and all I can say is WOW! The sharpness and detail you get from this lens was amazing, even wide open. It's a bit heavy but the construction of this lens is second to none.
Viltrox Pro series have stepped up Viltrox's line up and I look forward to more of the Pro lenses. If you're looking for a fast tele-prime get this lens.