27 May TCL-x100ii review with x100v
I’m going to chalk this one up as pure GAS. That’s “Gear Acquisition Syndrome” for the laymen. The X100V as it sits with the 35mm focal length is superb. It matches the X100v’s niche of casual photography perfectly. That being said, the 35mm focal length is completely a subjective favorite. For that casual photography go to lens, the mass majority of photographers will land between 28mm and 50mm. This is where these adapters like the TCL-X100ii and WCL come into play.
There isn’t much to say here other than it matches the overall feeling of the X100V. Solid, heavy, and nice looking. There are no focus rings, no aperture dials, just a barrel of metal with some glass in it. Screw it on the front of the camera and its good to go. The X100V even knows its attached as long as you have the second generation version with the little magnet embedded in it. The front element however is bulbous and huge. It attracts a lot of dust.
Image Quality and Focus Performance
Previous generations of X100’s have not had the best results with this adapter. I had one on an X100F and it was a pretty soft lens wide open. I’m happy to report that when paired with the new X100V lens, its sharp as a tack. It focuses a little faster but seems a little less accurate with face detection like previous iterations. The added bokeh from the longer focal length is sadly underwhelming as well. Overall it does crank out some truly beautiful images.
For me and many others the X100V is an extra camera. The daily driver, meant to supplement the more serious gear. Converting it to a 50mm focal length seems oddly wrong to me. The biggest advantage to the X100 series cameras are their small size and inconspicuous nature. Adding this adapter makes it the same size as my a7Riii with the 50mm f/1.8 lens on it. And lets be honest, the Sony is going to blow it away in terms of auto-focus performance, image quality, and resolution. As attractive as this lens is with it good looks and decent pictures. It just doesn’t make much sense to me.