It was raining cats and dogs when this super-zoom arrived outside my front door and I was dying to take it out with the Lumix GX8 (came together) for a spin!
Not wanting to give these lovely Panasonic beauties a shower, even though they both can take the plunge because both are weather sealed... I thought for this wet day 1, I will just take some quick shots from our rain drenched deck!
But first, lets look at this Leica designed super-zoom...
First of all, this is a heavy and PRICEY zoom lens, is Leica lenses EVER CHEAP?
Our local Photowarehouse is asking NZ$2,499 for this 985g (34.7 oz) beauty!
Why so much?
Take a look at the optics inside this very solid lens barrel, all told, there are TWENTY optical element in THIRTEEN group and some of them are exotic glass!
Apart from that, this lens is also...
1. The LONGEST zoom lens in the M43 world!
2. This lens have the LONGEST zoom range of 100-400mm, also the FIRST lens in the M43 family to reach a 800mm Eq focal length!
3. It have an effective built-in I.S. (image stabiliser) which can work with the NEW DUAL I.S. in some of the Lumix camera bodies (like the GX8 and GX85) to provide a SEAMLESS 6 or 7 axis anti-shake technology!
On their DUAL I.S., Panasonic NZ clarifies...
Just a clarification on Dual IS. It is not adding extra axis of stabilisation over the 4 axis of the GX8 or 5 axis of the GX85. What it is doing is the lens IS axis and 2 of the axis of the body are the same (pitch and yaw movement) having both the lens and sensor working on these 2 critical axis at the same time and complementing each other’s stabilisation makes the overall system more stable.
The below video link may help demonstrate it.
Many others have reviewed about this marvellous lens, I am the Johnny-Come-Lately, to get a long winded, good reading review... try THIS WEB SITE :)
Now back to the two pictures I shot from our rain drenched deck...
The first picture of the tiny flowers was shot at 400mm (800mm Eq) handheld. The lens was mounted on the supplied largish Lumix GX8, a good choice. I make sure the DUAL I.S. is active.
Take a look at the Meta Data...
Those tiny brooms were captured at ISO800, max aperture of f/6.3, 1/50 sec at 800mm Eq!!
Since when you are able to ever get a sharp image at that SLOW speed and at a WHOOPING 800mm?!!
This is the 200% crop of those flowers of the same image...
I don't know about you, but I am stunned! Floored!
Like my Olympus OM-D E-M5?
This shot of a common NZ brown bird was shot at the same 800mm and this is the sharpest one from a lot of 10.
The Meta-Data inform me the shutter speed was 1/150 sec.
I think the I.S. in the OM-D body did not work as effectively as the latest Lumix I.S. technology, thus you need a higher shutter speed to tame the camera shake.
Famous Last Words...
This is a quick first impression of the Panasonic Leica 100-400 zoom, I will be shooting other subjects, objects in the next two weeks.
They Shoot Planes With Panasonic Leica 100-400 Don't They?