Gallery (35 images): Tested! Fujifilm XF 16mm f/1.4R WR
A couple of weeks ago, Fujifilm announced a new, fast wide-angle 16mm prime lens, equivalent to a 24mm in full-frame terms. Notably, this is Fujifilm's first prime lens with the WR designation, meaning it has dust and water resistant construction. I had the opportunity to test a pre-production sample of the new 16mm almost immediately and now, just a few weeks later, I've had a chance to throughly test a final production sample. In short, this new prime is extremely impressive! Compared to the Fujifilm XF 23mm f/1.4R, which I consider one of the very best wide-angle lenses I have ever used (regardless of brand), this new 16mm holds up to the 23mm in pretty much every way. Also, considering how much wider it is, being equivalent to a 24mm in full-frame terms versus a 35mm equivalent for the 23mm f/1.4, the size and weight increase over the 23mm is really quite minimal.
Like the 23mm f/1.4, the new 16mm is essentially 100% corrected optically for distortion, therefore no software correction will be needed; straight lines render straight with no apparent barrel or pincushion distortion, even at the very edges of the frame. For shots where the focus is quite close, less than a few meters, there does appear a slight hint of barrel distortion, but for most shots, especially at further distances, it is virtually nonexistent. In addition, I see no evidence of any chromatic aberration either - nothing! With its Nano-GI anti-reflection lens coatings (which the older prime lenses do not have), it is extremely resistant to lens flare when shooting into the sun as well, something that fast, wide-angle primes are often not very good at. Even the wide-open bokeh is surprisingly smooth and pleasing, not something one would necessarily expect from such a wide lens either.