Panasonic 12-60mm f/2.8-4 ASPH POWER OIS LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT

 
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12-60mm $768
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(From Panasonic lens literature) Panasonic is proud to introduce a new standard zoom digital interchangeable lens, the LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT 12-60mm / F2.8-4.0 ASPH. / POWER O.I.S. (35mm camera equivalent: 24-120mm) as the first lens to be introduced from its LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT F2.8-4.0 Series.

Covering a focusing distance from ultra-wide angle to super telephoto, this new LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT F2.8-4.0 Series achieves exceptionally high descriptiveness for both photo and video recording, and yet its size is kept compact. All of the lenses in this series feature a 9-blade diaphragm to give the aperture a rounded shape that produces an attractively smooth effect in out-of-focus areas when shooting at larger aperture settings. All lenses also take advantage of Panasonic's Nano Surface Coating technology to minimize ghosts and flaring. They boast a rugged, dust/splash-proof design and are even freeze-proof down to -10°C to withstand professional use under harsh conditions. The high-quality video recording capability is also one of the advantages of this lens series.

The new LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT 12-60mm / F2.8-4.0 ASPH. / POWER O.I.S. offers a versatile 5x zoom range of 24-120mm. It fully covers a variety of daily shooting situations, from dynamic landscapes to portraits even in low-lit situations, providing a beautiful defocus effect by taking advantage of the F2.8-4.0 high-speed performance.

Comprising 14 elements in 12 groups, the lens system features four aspherical lenses and two ED (Extra-low Dispersion) lenses that effectively suppress spherical distortion or chromatic aberration to achieve stunning picture quality. The use of these lenses also enables high mobility.

In addition to the wide aperture, the POWER O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) effectively compensates for blurring, making it easy to shoot even in dim lighting. The lens works with the Dual I.S. (Image Stabilizer)*1, 5-axis Dual I.S.*2, and 5-axis Dual I.S.2*3 system when mounted on an applicable Panasonic LUMIX DSLM (Digital Single Lens Mirrorless) camera.

The linear motor enables the camera to comply with the sensor drive at max. 240 fps to take full advantage of cameras with high-speed, high-precision Contrast AF. It also helps to reduce wobbling. Notably, the new lens excels in video recording performance. In addition to the silent operation achieved by the inner focus drive system, the micro-step drive system in the aperture control section helps the camera to smoothly catch up to brightness changes when zooming or panning. The optical design achieves exceptional barycentric stability to minimize image shifts during zooming. The AF tracking performance in zooming is also improved thanks to high-speed frame analysis for focus control.

Offered in sharp, metallic black color, the new LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT 12-60mm / F2.8-4.0 ASPH. / POWER O.I.S. stylishly matches the LUMIX G DSLM cameras.

The LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT F2.8-4.0 Series lineup will expand with additional lenses. An 8-18mm (16-36mm, 35mm camera equivalent) wide zoom lens and 50-200mm (100-400mm, 35mm camera equivalent) telephoto zoom lens are presently under development.

*1 Complies with the LUMIX GX8.
*2 Complies with the LUMIX GX85.
*3 Complies with the LUMIX GH5 and G85.

Design and specifications are subject to change without notice.

Panasonic 12-60mm f/2.8-4 ASPH POWER OIS LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT

Panasonic 12-60mm f/2.8-4 ASPH POWER OIS LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT User Reviews

7.7/10 average of 3 reviews Build Quality 9.3/10 Image Quality 7.0/10
  • 9 out of 10 points and recommended by (6 reviews)
    Great build quality. Very sharp and contrast is excellent. Light and easy to use on any m4/3 body.
    Expensive.

    This is the lens that is on my camera about 90% of the time. I like the zoom range and don't mind the variable aperture, as I usually shoot between f4 and f6.3 anyway. Nice and sharp with excellent color and image quality. Highly recommended.

    reviewed May 25th, 2018 (purchased for $1,000)
  • 4 out of 10 points and not recommended by (1 reviews)
    Small, light, weatherproof, sturdy build, smooth operation.
    Poor sharpness, color.

    I know many users have reported issues with the sharpness of this lens, I had doubts about buying it but pulled the trigger when it went on sale ($750 from B&H). However I will say that if the one I got is as good as they get, it simply is not worth it at even 50% off. Compared to my $550 14-140 lens (made in Japan) at 45mm F4 (4.9 for the 14-140), the 12-60mm simply is not as sharp - center or corner. And the colors seem duller. This was based on a controlled test of with a map hanging on wall under controlled lighting.

    I wish the 14-140 was weather sealed (and went down to 12mm), and then I would not be left longing for what this lens *should* have been. Perhaps it's the poor chinese quality control, I can't imagine what Panny was thinking in making a $1000 Leica branded lens there. There was some lint on the lens when I unpacked it, even inside the baggie and under the lens cap - obviously not made in a clean room.

    Now I'm torn between exchanging it (~$20) for new one in the hope it is luck of the draw, or simply returning it to wait for Panny to issue a zoom in this range actually worthy of the Leica badge.

    reviewed May 17th, 2018 (purchased for $750)
  • 10 out of 10 points and recommended by (17 reviews)
    Everything!
    Made in China.

    I bought this lens as a Japanese import with a one year shop-only warranty - so I've tested it thoroughly to make sure it's a keeper - it is! There are some online reviews of this lens available already - Photozone is the best so far - all of which say it is optically excellent and as good as the best of the m43 zooms, and I fully agree with the reviews. It works best stopped down one to two stops but is very good wide open, especially at the wide end in the centre. Wide edges aren't so sharp wide open but still decent. As expected, the tele end is also a little bit less sharp but not disappointing and stopped down a little makes it fully sharp across the frame. There's no problems with fringing etc. Other Leica-Panasonic lenses I've owned are made in Japan but this one's made in China, however, the build quality is very satisfying with a beautifully damped zoom action. The action is a tiny little bit lighter from 12 to 18, and the lens starts to extend at 18mm when it adds a little more resistance - I'm nit picking. It's still very easy to zoom smoothly despite this slight change. Power OIS is very effective and the aperture works well at fine control of exposure in video too. Overall, I have no complaints and can see this lens staying on the camera (GX85) 80% of the time since this range is ideal for me.

    reviewed April 8th, 2017 (purchased for $670)