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Panasonic 45mm f/2.8 ASPH MEGA OIS LEICA DG MACRO-ELMARIT

 
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45mm $898
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(From Panasonic lens literature) Panasonic has unveiled a new macro lens of world renowned Leica name Leica DG MACRO-ELMARIT 45mm f/2.8 ASPH. MEGA O.I.S. (35mm camera equivalent: 90mm) for another member of the LUMIX G Micro System.

Awaited long from enthusiastic photographers worldwide, the new Leica DG MACRO-ELMARIT 45mm f/2.8 ASPH. MEGA O.I.S. boasts a superb image quality with minimum distortion, chromatic aberrations as well as ghosts and flares that passes a stringent Leica standard to goes beyond their expectations.

The new lens system uses both an aspherical lens and an ED lens in its fourteen lenses in ten groups to realize outstanding compactness, taking advantage of the Micro Four Thirds standard to achieve dramatic downsizing while minimizing distortion and chromatic aberration. Panasonic's Mega O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) suppresses the blurring that is commonly caused by hand-shake, making it easy to shoot clear shots for sharply focused macro shot or in dimly lit places without using a tripod.

It incorporates an inner focus system of three groups of floating structure, which enables excellent resolution and contrast without changing its overall length from full life-size magnification to infinity. The inclusion of stepping motor makes the focusing action smooth and silent for use in both photo and movie recording. The closest focusing distance can be instantly changed to 15cm or 50 cm (0.5 ft to 1.64 ft) with the switch on the lens barrel according to the shooting opportunity. The Leica DG MACRO-ELMARIT 45mm f/2.8 ASPH. MEGA O.I.S. lens also excels in portraits, middle-range snapshot, or landscapes in addition to the original full life-size macro shots.

When mounted on the LUMIX G Micro System Camera, the new lens allows use of the advanced contrast AF system, which includes a Face Recognition function, for more convenient, more enjoyable shooting. Seven blades give the aperture a rounded shape that produces an attractively smooth effect in out-of-focus areas when shooting at larger aperture settings. The new Leica DG MACRO-ELMARIT 45mm f/2.8 ASPH. MEGA O.I.S. lens also features a highly reliable metal mount, and uses multi-coated lens elements that minimize ghosts and flare to further enhance its optical performance.

Panasonic 45mm f/2.8 ASPH MEGA OIS LEICA DG MACRO-ELMARIT User Reviews

9.7/10 average of 3 reviews Build Quality 9.0/10 Image Quality 10.0/10
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by (2 reviews)
    Great image quality, excellent autofocus
    small max aperture, lens hood doesn't reverse for storage

    I love shooting close-up - not quite macro (1:1) in most cases, but pretty close (1:4 to 1:2). I am amazed at how well the autofocus works even it these close ranges - it always focuses on something, and very often the right thing, but once you get to know the lens its relatively easy to coax it into focusing on the correct subject (hint: if you want it to focus closer than it is, look for something that will fill the FOV and focus on that, then move back to your actual subject - focus occurs from the relative current position of focus and will be more likely to 'find' what you want it to).

    However, there are times when manual focus must be used, or is just preferable, and that works very nicely too - a good, solid feel to the focus ring and sensitive enough to make minute adjustments.

    The picture quality is absolutely stunning - I use it as much as I can, for all kinds of images, not just close-up and macro. I'm not exactly sure how to describe it, but the pictures just look better than with other non-Leica Panasonic lens. They are extremely sharp, especially around f4, with rich color.

    The biggest limitation I find is the fairly small maximum aperture - if Vivitar could put out a 90mm f2.5 macro lens in the 70s, surely Panasonic & Leica could do a little better than f2.8 on a 90mm-equivalent lens in 2011. I would almost certainly use this lens a LOT more if it went to, say, f2.

    One very minor gripe - I'm not sure why the lens bezel is grooved (to reduce reflected light?), but it tends to trap small dirt & dust particles easily. Having dirt here isn't a problem in itself, but its so close to the lens it can easily transfer there, and the grooves make it a little more difficult to clean as well. This should in no way deter anyone from buying or using the lens, just something to be aware of so you can plan accordingly.

    reviewed January 20th, 2012 (purchased for $550)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by (12 reviews)
    Exceptional clear images and very nice blur, high construction standard.
    No.

    First and excelent Leica lens for MFT. Good for macro, portreture and lanscapes.

    reviewed November 9th, 2011 (purchased for $685)
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by (1 reviews)
    Very high optical quality
    expensive

    I needed a micro lens for my Panasonic G1 and didn't want to go the adapter route. This lens is expensive but the quality of the photos taken with it are outstanding. Manual focus works well as the image seems to 'pop' in and out of focus with small movement of the ring so it's very useful. Lens also works well in portraiture. Very good bokeh appearance. Would have no trouble recommending it.

    reviewed April 21st, 2010 (purchased for $895)