Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Panasonic Leica 12mm f/1.4 - BOKEH-LICIOUS!!

In my recent posting about this very bright, pricey super-wide "Low Light King",  I follow up with a "Second Take" where I compared the NZ$2,500 lens with cheaper glass, I received some feed back from Panasonic Hew Zealand...

"Thank you for the review.

While comparing all 3 lenses at F5.6 for sharpness is valid as part of a whole review I do feel that you have overlooked the main feature of the lens that is also the main contributor to the cost of the lens. Namely, its brightness. 

Getting a 12mm lens to F1.4 and keeping sharpness at that aperture is not cheap. Also keeping the size in check and using 9 aperture blades and weather sealing also add to the cost.

Will you be following up with reviews showing the Bokeh performance?"

That timely feed back reminded me that I should look into one of the main attraction this lens can offer... NICE, CREAMY BOKEH!

For those that don't know what BOKEH is...

In short...

The visual quality of the out-of-focus areas of a photographic image, especially as rendered by a particular lens.

A "nice" bokeh will help to isolate your subject from a distracting background. In general but not always, a large aperture lens will exhibit nice bokeh.

This is my first "Bokeh Specific" shot taken with the Leica 12/1.4 at FULL F1.4, notice how sharp (in focus area) is?  The creamy bokeh melt smoothly into the background.  Very nice indeed!

This is a 100% crop from the same picture, there is a trace of CA, considering this was shot at F1.4, mind boggles!  Well done Panasonic!!

The lousy winter weather did a round about, I decided to take the Leica 12mm to our Rose Garden for some bokeh shots.

Being winter, there are no roses to photograph, but roses are not what I was after, my target was the beautiful orchids in the giant green house!

All the flower shots were taken using the GX8 and Leica 12mm, hand held.

Framing was with the flexible LCD screen and the desired focus-point was set by touching the touch screen with my left thumb.

The GX8 was on "A" and shooting aperture varies from full F/1.4 to F/2.8.  Only electronic shutter was used.


Famous Last Words...

Well, what can I say?

The Panasonic Leica 12/1.4 deliver the best bokeh among the lenses I came across! 

The 12mm is also a very sharp and versatile wide angle lens that render day to day shots really well!

Let me see if I can talk to my Bank Manager  ;)

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