4/3 lenses on m4/3 body

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by Rich L, Aug 26, 2011.

  1. Rich L

    Rich L Mu-43 Rookie

    Aug 6, 2011
    Seriously considering getting a gh2 and a couple of pancake lenses, and as a bonus it would be great to think that the only olympus lenses I have - 7-14, 14-54mk2, and 50 macro would work on that body.

    I know I need the adapter, but how will these lenses shape up? I've heard one or two alarming things about the camera refusing to focus with some lenses, especially the older designs like the 7-14 and 50.

    I'll bet this question has been asked loads!

    Thanks all
  2. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    There is a compatibility chart on both the Panasonic and Olympus websites showing what will work and not work with the various lens/body combinations.

    I THINK AF will work, but slowly, with all 43 lenses on a GH2 (they would not with any of the -1 series cameras)

    Aperture, EXIF, all that will work with all Oly/Panny 43 lenses on m43 bodies.
  3. jim_khoo

    jim_khoo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 9, 2010
    Kuala Lumpur
    not sure how they (4/3rd olys) will work with gh2,
    but the AF is slower for the older (yellow) ones.

    chart below tells the darker blue ones are compatible
    but the AF is still a tad slow.
  4. joele

    joele Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 12, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia
    My Olympus 50mm f2 macro is not super fast to AF on the Ep-3 but for stationary subjects the AF is OK and certainly works...

    Though it is more of a special purpose lens and macro I often use manual anyway... My Olympus 150/2 also works but again moving subjects are a waste of time, unless you use manual and catch them so to speak.. I shoot mainly land/street-scapes and still life so not a huge issue for me YMMV...
  5. Rich L

    Rich L Mu-43 Rookie

    Aug 6, 2011
    Thanks all. There seems to be very little info out there on which lenses work best. Am I right in thinking it's the contrast detect AF of Panasonic that may be an issue with some of the older Oly lenses, and the Pens use phase detect AF.

    Talk about confusing!

    TC. I cant locate that panasonic chart you mention - any chance of a link?

  6. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin .

    Oct 9, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Real Name:
    All m4/3 cameras use contrast-detect AF. For whatever reason the first generation Panasonic cameras are incapable of focusing 4/3 lenses that were not specifically designed to operate to operate with CDAF, whereas the Olys and the later Pannys can.
  7. Rich L

    Rich L Mu-43 Rookie

    Aug 6, 2011
    Just looked at the instruction book for my e30, and focus is done by phase-contrast detect. So I'm assuming a GH2 with adapter should in theory perform AF and all other functions OK although a bit slow with older design 4/3 lenses - and they can be slow anyway on 4/3 bodies.
    Failing that, I'll probably flog the 4/3 gear and use m4/3 100%.

  8. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    This is a characteristic of Panasonic bodies, and is only just another part of Panasonic's Nazi hold against compatibility. All Four-Thirds lenses will AF on all Olympus Micro Four-Thirds bodies. They are the same system, after all. Panasonic bodies however, will refuse to AF certain Four-Thirds lenses, and will even refuse to C-AF on certain native Micro Four-Thirds lenses (including their most popular native m43 lens - the Lumix 20mm). This is because Panasonic doesn't feel the performance of AF on these lenses is "good enough" to allow the consumer to even try. Just like the lock on 3rd party batteries...

    That said, the GH2 is new enough that the compatibility for most Four-Thirds lenses is there now. At least Panasonic has been adding to the list on a regular basis.

    I don't know which lenses exactly will focus on your GH2, but the Zuiko 14-54mm Mark II is actually optimized for CDAF focus, and will definitely work well. The 50mm Macro is the one I'd be most concerned about, as it's a slow focusing lens in the first place (as should be expected of a macro!).

    Don't sell your Four-Thirds lenses... you won't get anything equivalent to Four-Thirds fast zooms in Micro Four-Thirds, and Four-Thirds lenses work very well on Micro Four-Thirds bodies. I've used them exclusively on the PEN since the PENs first came out, as my only AF lenses. I don't even own a single Micro Four-Thirds lens anymore... one of the forum members here got my last one.
  9. kiynook

    kiynook Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 16, 2010
    Richard, this may be irrelevant but I am using a brand new Mk II on both my E-P2 and E-P3 with no problem. My friends also shoot 50mm on their PENs with no issue. Your 7-14mm is a sweet lens man. Lucky you.
  10. Howi

    Howi Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 23, 2011
    Real Name:
    All 4/3 bodies use phase detect AF, when in live view mode they use contrast detect AF.
    M43 bodies, because they are in live view mode, use ontrast detection by default.
    The more modern lenses (the 12-60 being an exception) can work with both AF systems.
    Ply m43 bodies seem to work with more 4/3 lenses than Pany bodies, but the range of great 4/3 glass means they are still worth keeping and using.
    This is where you have to use MF mode, it's not that difficult.
  11. Rich L

    Rich L Mu-43 Rookie

    Aug 6, 2011
    I know the 14-54 behaves much better in live view on my e30 than the 50 macro and 7-14. The last two lenses are poor at live view, the camera fusses too much, lots of clicking, and difficult to tell which click is actually the shutter firing.

    If this is what using these two lenses is going to be like on a GF2, and MF is the way to go, then I may do a bit of re-thinking.

    So no one out there has used an Oly 7-14 with a Pan m4/3 and liked it?!

  12. Tom Swaman

    Tom Swaman Mu-43 Veteran


    Panasonic has an excellent lens brochure and system compatibility charts on their website that you can download. The information on theses is essentially accurate.

    FWIMBW, I use a couple of 4/3rd lenses on my GH2. I use the PL 25mm f/1.4 because it is a superbly sharp, normal prime lens. However, these lenses are heaby and they do auto-focus well, but relatively slowly. I am hoping the new micro 4.3rds PL 25mm f/1.4 lens is close to being as good as the 4/3rds lens. If it is, my present lens is for sale and my replacement is on its way. Also, the old lens with adapter costs twice the price of the micro 4/3rds model.

    Frankly, if you are a lens collector and care to play great. Otherwise, you are probably well advised to shoot native lenses and stay with micro 4/3rds on mft bodies unless you must have wider apertures and size and weight do not bother you and the pancake lenses will not work to your desired end.

    Best regards,
  13. pjphoto59

    pjphoto59 New to Mu-43

    4/3 lenses on G2

    Following ~tc~'s link to the GH2 compatabilities, I had a look at the equivalent Panasonic list for the G2. My G2 is a recent purchase and I had not yet really tested my 4/3 lenses to see how well they focus.

    I tested them (S-AF only) with results as follows:

    (a) 14-42 and 40-150 (Mk2) focus fast, although not as fast as the Pana 14-42.

    (b) 25mm pancake, 35mm, and 12-60 focus well but not really fast enough for action shooting. The 35mm is slowest but it gets there. The 12-60 and 25 mm do 2-3 clicks then focus. (The Pana table says the 12-60 is NG - not true!)

    (c) All the lenses in (a) and (b) focus equally well with the EC-14 attached.

    (d) The 50-200 (Mk 1) does not focus. Manual focus only.
  14. Rich L

    Rich L Mu-43 Rookie

    Aug 6, 2011
    Just thought I'd give a quick update on this.

    Ended up with a GH2 and 4/3 to m4/3 adapter - and I can confirm the little Panasonic pancake lenses are fast at focusing.
    The Olympus 7-14 stutters but it gets there, as does the 50 macro. I've been using manual focusing with the GH2 and these two lenses due to the brilliant GH2 manual focus assist. A feature of EVF's that has convinced me they are the way to go!.

  15. adjuster

    adjuster New to Mu-43

    Sep 5, 2011
  16. jim_khoo

    jim_khoo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 9, 2010
    Kuala Lumpur
    the link was given to me by a fellow oly user when i asked if the
    4/3rds 12-60 & 50mm macro are compatible with oly pen some 2½
    months back.

    i did not bother the firmware since i only uses 1454 II occasionally
    which AF pretty ok with both e-pl2 and e-p3.

    anyway, i think you might find your answers here.