Saturday, December 14, 2013

Fuji XQ1 Review – Part 2 – The Lens (CA and distortion) and Lightroom’s ability to deal …

I’ve noticed two things about the XQ1’s lens so far: it has a significant amount of uncorrected CA – harkening back to the days of the early F series – and it has significant and partially uncorrectable distortion in raw.

The CA is quite visible, although thankfully it is not as bad as the original F series lenses because it does not devolved into their horrific purple fringing around lights. Still, it is a bit painful.

A great example comes from the Christmas Craft show, which I wrote in part 1 of the series would be the subject of part 2. But I have decided to push it to part 3. The example shows CA quite clearly in the OOC JPEG (downsized here.)

fuji xq1  400iso  f/2  1/60  4.6mm

The CA at 100% looks like this, and you can see that it has the blue-yellow and the red-green forms:



But is can be completely corrected in RAW, as shown here:



While it’s not absolutely perfect, it’s close enough for any practical use.

Here are the settings that I used on the raw conversion … the settings are complete and the CA is specifically handled in the bottom right corner …

As always, click on the image to get the expanded version.

And if that isn’t quite clear enough, then here is an animation of the two juxtaposed. And note the distortion, which I have managed to match with –12 on the distortion slider (adds barrel to counteract severe pincushion.) But Fuji also stretches the sides out slightly, which adds enough complexity so that I cannot handle it in Lightroom.

This is unfortunate, since complex distortions can be easily corrected by adding markup to the raw image. The distortions and CA are then automatically removed by the raw converter. Panasonic does this for all of their cameras and it makes them extremely convenient to shoot in either raw or JPEG. Oh well …

And once more, close up to get the full effect of the CA and the distortion …

Remember to click on these to see them full-sized.

I consider the lens issues minor … the distortion is corrected perfectly in JPEG and adequately in raw using Lightroom. The CA is minor in JPEG and easily eliminated in raw.

I won’t comment in detail on sharpness, but so far I get a good impression.