The XF 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 R LM WR is Fujifilm’s New Kit Lens

A black Fujifilm XF 16-50mm camera lens is shown against a white background. The lens features a zoom ring with focal length markings and a textured focus ring, designed for use with Fujifilm X-Mount mirrorless cameras.

As hinted at earlier this year in Tokyo, Fujifilm is moving on from the 18-55mm f/2.8-4 lens — which has achieved legendary status among kit lenses — in favor of the new, sharper 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 R LM WR. Fujifilm promises the new 16-50mm is better for its high-resolution cameras.

The 18-55mm f/2.8-4 is highly revered and one of the best kit lenses ever made. Much of Fujifilm’s success with entry-level photographers is primarily attributed to it because the kit lens shirked the norm and provided a fast and excellent general zoom lens at an affordable price.

“I recently tested this venerable lens against modern contemporaries like the Sigma 18-50mm and the Fujifilm surprisingly held its own, even though it’s approaching its 12th birthday. It may be time to make an updated version but when the old lens still performs as well as it does and provides image stabilization with a decently fast aperture, you can see how the 18-55mm deserves legendary status,” PetaPixel‘s Chris Niccolls wrote last year.

But as good as it is, the lens doesn’t resolve Fujifilm’s higher 40-megapixel sensor and, as such, needed to be replaced, especially since the company needed something to pair with the new X-T50. The 18-55mm will remain available until stock runs out, after which no new ones will be made. Enter the 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 R LM WR, which now has enormous shoes to fill.

Equivalent to a 24-76mm lens on a full-frame camera, Fujifilm says it has high-speed and high-precision autofocus and a magnification of 0.3x at the telephoto end (equivalent to a magnification of 0.45x in 35mm format), allowing for an approximately four-centimeter (1.4-inch) minimum focusing distance throughout the zoom range and letting photographers get as close as 15 centimeters (approximately six inches) from the front of the lens to the subject. It features close-up capability equivalent to half macro, which Fujifilm says makes it ideal for photographing food, crafts, plants, and various everyday scenes.

A Fujifilm XF 16-55mm f/2.8 R LM WR zoom lens with a black, ribbed body, displaying focal length markings from 16 to 55. The lens features switches for zoom and manual focus. The "Fujinon Aspherical" label is visible around the front element.

Image of a black Fujifilm XF zoom lens with a lens hood, showcasing detailed focus and zoom rings. The lens is horizontally oriented, and the markings show focus distances ranging from 18 to 55mm.

The lens weighs 240 grams (8.5 ounces) and features a “weather-resistant structure” thanks to sealing applied to 13 areas of the lens. It is also temperature-resistant to -10 degrees Celsius (14 degrees Fahrenheit). It is constructed of 11 elements arranged into nine groups, including three aspherical lenses and three extra-low dispersion elements, which suppress chromatic aberration and maintain high resolution throughout the zoom range.

Top-down view of a black digital camera with an attached XF 16-50mm zoom lens. The camera body features various buttons, dials, and controls for settings, including an on/off switch, shutter speed dial, and exposure compensation dial.

Autofocus is driven by a small, fast, light, and silent linear motor. Fujifilm says it can accurately focus on a subject within 0.015 seconds. The lens does not extend when zoomed, meaning its weight distribution remains relatively constant regardless of focal length.

The XF 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 R LM WR lens is expected to be available in June 2024 for $699.95 and can be preordered now from Moment.

Image credits: Fujifilm