When it comes to the XF lens lineup, Fujifilm has given so many options for common focal lengths. For a short telephoto (only primes – there are countless zoom options), we can choose the 50mm f/1, 50mm f/2, 56mm f/1.2, 56mm f/1.2 APD. I already owned the 56mm f/1.2 when I bought the XF 50mm f/2 the first time. At that stage, I didn’t really understand the lens and ended up selling it off. However, as I looked over the images I’d made with it over the time I owned it, I began to develop a love for certain aspects of the lens and purchased it again.
When compared to the 56mm focal length, it does force you to get a little closer. This can be really great for more intimate portraits. This is especially true for portraits of children, where that little extra distortion of facial features can add to the cuteness. It’s a subtle difference, but that physical proximity translates into the final photograph. On top of that, you’ve got its excellent autofocus performance, especially when tracking moving subjects. Then, there is the contrast. Straight out of camera, the images have a much more contrasty feel than those from the XF 56mm f/1.2.
So, in the end, I’ve decided to keep both lenses and use them for their individual characteristics. If I had to pick one at this stage, it would be the 50mm for the above reasons. It’s a bit more of a versatile lens.