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Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 Micro 4/3 Lens Review

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When you have a lens as good as the Olympus 12-100/4 OIS Pro, why would you want the Panasonic 14mm f/2.5?


Good question and the answer is to fill out a low light alternative in a light package and small footprint. This lens will be used in conjunction with the Panasonic 9mm f/1.7 & the Panasonic 35-100/2.8.


Disclaimer: I process images to my liking and am more interested in what a lens can achieve than RAW out of camera jpgs. All images will have been processed through Lightroom Classic in some manner.


Small, light and almost unnoticeable, this pancake prime resembles in appearance the other Panasonic pancake prime, the legendary 20mm f/1.7. We have owned that great lens in the past and see the resemblance.


You could drop this 14mm (28mm field of view) into you bag or pocket and forget about it. The footprint is very small. On a smaller framed camera, this will help keep your footprint small. Great too if you are a fan of that field of view too!


Metal mount gives confidence and the focus ring is fly by wire, but decently dampened.





Weather Sealed
This is not weather sealed and there are a lot of sealed prime and zoom options if that is what you need. None are this small, though.




Image Quality
So here is what most want to know. Yes, this is a sharp lens. Is it the sharpest? Probably not – but it is more than usable wide open.


I really doubt that most would find fault with the lens in regards to sharpness, color or contrast. It will work great for you in the cameras that provide an anti shock mode.


I make the above reference because when the 14mm was first introduced, I tried it on the Olympus EM5. It suffered from significant shutter shock and I did not purchase it at that time. So, be aware that an EM5.2 EM1 or similar or newer generation Olympus camera is recommended.




Focus in my opinion is similar to the 20mm f/1.7 but faster. By similar I mean that there are times when it will miss focus or hunt a bit more than I think it should.


Overall, though the accuracy is just fine on my EM1.2.




OIS (Optical Image Stabilization)
This lens has no VR built into it. If stabilization is needed, go with an Olympus body or a Panasonic body that has IBIS.





Bottom Line
You could go with other lenses in similar focal lengths and with faster aperture. None will be this small and light (other than the P20/1.7 – but that lens gives you a 40mm field of view and not a 28) or this cheap. On the used market this lens is very inexpensive.


For me, f/2.5 is a fast enough aperture for this secondary system lens. Given the trade offs of overall system size and weight, it is a valid choice for that use case.


99% of the time, when using the m43 kit in good to moderate light, they do it all wonder lens that is the Oly 12-100/4 is going to be the choice. However, for those instances you need a bit more light gathering but want to remain small, this 14mm in my loud light kit fits the bill nicely in size, weight, image quality and price.


Bottom Line = Highly Recommend!






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See my content here:

http://www.visualohio.com | BESTLIGHTPHOTO BLOG | 500px Profile & Pics


I shoot Nikon, Olympus, Minolta, Pentax and Leica.  Probably not enough!  LOL

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