View Full Version : GH2 Panasonic Glass - your thoughts

12-16-2011, 07:44 PM
I own the 14-140 and 20mm, and have been relatively pleased with them. Many/most of you all probably come from the line of thought that says 'oh man, I can't believe you are pleased with Panasonic glass... you need to get some primes...' Thats all great n dandy, but what about the affordable end of the spectrum? My thought is that I would simply like to continue investing in M43 because I like the format and I don't have a ton of Canon legacy lenses.

Any thoughts? Note, I run a very small production company. Very Mom 'n Pop. I do not have much of a budget, but I would like to set goals. At this point I just haven't heard much of a review on Panasonic's M43 lenses, and it seems like there are quite a few available.

12-16-2011, 08:19 PM
A good used Nikon AI-S 50mm f/1.4 manual lens will cost you about $150 on eBay. The MetaBones Nikon ---> M4/3 will run you about $90 on eBay. You can't get cheaper or better than this for a fast great portrait/interview lens for the GH-2.

There is tons of great used Nikon AI-S glass on eBay, that is often going for a fraction of what a new lens will cost you.

12-16-2011, 08:35 PM
I am personally considering getting the 25mm f1.4 lens from panasonic. Not sure if I want to wait until the X lenses come around though.

12-16-2011, 08:38 PM
The new oly 45mm F1.8 looks like a winner, its a good complement to your 20mm.

12-16-2011, 08:40 PM
Most of the m4/3 primes are great, and if you have the cash the Oly 45/1.8 and the 12/2 or Pan 14/2.5 would be great additions to the 20/1.7. Old Nikon primes are great (I have a handful of AI & AIS primes) but they can be a bit tricky to match with native lenses.

12-16-2011, 09:03 PM
Seriously this is very helpful. January is right around the corner and I am making a list..

12-16-2011, 09:57 PM
Of the pile of lenses in the closet, not all of them work well with M/3. But some do! And some are really, really cheap.
Of the expensive ones, the one that really stands out for me is the Olly 45mm.
Of the medium priced, the 85mm F/1.4 by many different makers (Samyang, Vivitar, Rokinon, Bower, etc). That's a great lens
And of the cheap ones, and these are just a steal, look for the Vivitar 55mm macro, and any of dozens of 50mm F/1.4 of various flavors. There isn't a big difference between Canon, Rokkor, etc. It's important when getting an older lens that the mechanics are as smooth, and I also like a longer throw in the focus ring, I don't like "touchy" lenses for video.
Expect a fast zoom from Panny at some point, but you can't go wrong with legacy primes.

12-17-2011, 09:18 AM
A set of vintage glass is usually a cheap and easy find. Olympus OM Zuikos and Vivitar primes are probably two of the most underrated and low-priced of the available flavors, but most anything works.

That said, the flexibility of the Panasonic lenses is undeniable, and the quality is outstanding. My "go" kit includes the 7-14, 14-140, 100-300, and the Leica 25/1.4. They're simply made to work with the camera, and do so very well in any practical situation.

12-17-2011, 09:34 AM
I have the same set as McBob (except voigtlander for the 25mm). Very flexible, juice range, sharp... Good stuff. Not for using manual follow focus gear, but for one man band stuff they're really quite good.

12-17-2011, 09:36 AM
The 7-14mm F/4 is a great lens. It may appear slow at F4 but as you can bump up the ISO to 3200 with little noise provided the scene is well exposed then it is very useful in all but the darkest of situations. It's a shame that the 14-140mm wasn't a constant F/4 too but it is still usable especially outdoors. The 20mm F/1.7 is excellent for low light

12-17-2011, 09:42 AM
I recommend legacy primes, too. I have an assortment of Canon, Nikon and Oly, but I've decided to unify my collection to old Nikon glass mainly. I've learned that the color cast of Oly, Canon, Nikon and Panasonic are all different. My Oly 50mm in particular is much cooler and blue than the others. So consistency is good. They are heavy, well-built and have focus rings that work well with a follow-focus. I like the old school analog nature of them. Also, older lenses lack modern anti-flare coatings, so they are a little less contrasty and more prone to flare. Stylistically, I see this as a good thing as they tend to look more cinematic than the modern m43 glass, which can seem too sharp and video-ish. It all comes down to your personal taste, and so even though I use the 20mm pancake a lot, I prefer working on narrative projects with my Nikons.