Some Initial Thoughts On THE
7Artisans 25mm F1.8 For Fujifilm

Is The $70 7Artisans 25mm F1.8 A Legit Option For Fuji Shooters? 

7Artisans is not a brand name that many of you have likely heard of, or if you have it is because of the press surrounding these incredibly affordable lenses. But can Fujifilm photographers really trust these lenses? Is it worth buying one of these guys for $70 or would it be a better investment to put that $70 towards one of Fujifilm's excellent Fujinon lenses? 

That is exactly what I am looking forward to figuring out as I conduct my review and testing on this lens here over the next several weeks. This lens was not provided to me by 7Artisans or a retailer, I decided to purchase the lens on my own because I was curious myself. So today I am here to share some of my initial impressions on the 7Artisans 25mm F1.8 in the Fujifilm X-Mount. 
7Artisans 25mm F1.8 – Fuji X-Mount

Alrighty, to get things started I wanted to talk a little bit about the build quality of the unit that I received. I am more than happy with what I got, not simply considering the $70 price tag, but in general, the lens is well built. This is the great thing about manual focus lenses, there is no trickery that needs to happen with fitting electronics and such within the lens. It’s all mechanical and so it can be smaller, lighter, and more compact.

I was particularly interested to see how this lens felt in terms of its manual focus ring and aperture rings. Since these are the only ways that you interact with this lens, it is pretty important that they work well and don’t get it in the way. I found that the aperture ring is solid and clicky but with just enough resistance that it doesn’t feel like it is going to get bumped all the time out of position (like the problem I had with the Mitakon 35mm F0.95). So that is good. On the focusing ring front, in terms of its resistance and how it felt to my touch, it is excellent. It is smooth and I feel like I can manipulate the focus without much of any head ache (kinda).

7Artisans 25mm F1.8 mounted on the Fujifilm X-Pro2

The only issue that I have was that the focusing ring is a little small, and given its position at the front of the lens, I have been running into the issue where my finger actually ends up in the foreground of some images because of their positioning on the lens. This is obviously not great, but it is also something that can be ‘learned’ to be dealt with and worked around. Is it something that would make the lens a ‘do not buy’ for me? No, not at all. But it does need to be noted.

I’ve honestly not used the lens a ton out on jobs just yet, but I have been playing around with the 7Artisans 25mm F1.8 and have had some test shots to see what it could do. Overall, for a $70 lens I am very impressed with the image quality, even wide open. Yes, there is some vignetting around the edges and the lens gets very soft and ‘smeary’ out near the corners. But in terms of sharpness and image quality in portions of the frame that I actually position my subjects in, the lens performs very admirably. Is it better than the Fujifilm 23mm F2, 27mm F2.8, or 35mm F2? No, not at all. But it is significantly cheaper than all of those options, so I wouldn’t expect it to match up in every way, that was not the point in checking this lens out.

The idea was, and remains to be, to determine if someone looking for either a cheap lens to play around with or needing something faster than F2.8 in between their 23mm and 35mm lenses, if this lens could be a viable option for them. So far, based on my limited testing up to this point, it seems that for a photographer looking to get the job done, and who isn’t a stickler for edge to edge image quality wide open at F1.8, this lens could be an excellent affordable option. I especially like it on my X-Pro2, both visually and functionally.

Obviously, I need to use this lens more, and in more varying situations to really get a full picture of its performance and whether or not I can recommend it. But as I just noted above… so far, so good. It is a $70 lens, keep your expectations within the realistic spectrum for a lens of that price tag and I would say that you will be very pleasantly surprised with what you can do with a lens that costs so little.

Anyways, enough talking for now, here are a few early sample images from my testing so far. Enjoy.

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