Advice needed for GM1 telephoto lens

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Florian, Dec 9, 2014.

  1. Florian

    Florian New to Mu-43

    Dec 9, 2014
    Hi everyone,

    I've been looking through this forum quite a lot, but I'm still unsure about my potential choice of lens for my GM1. I have it equipped with a 20mm 1.7, and I really love the setup, as I mostly take it out in the city and to parties.

    Now I will be heading to Australia and Fiji for an undetermined amount of time, and I am looking for a longer range that will keep me from being in a situation I was when backpacking before with a compact in Indonesia: being frustrated to see lots of wildlife and never be able to capture it. :frown:

    So my questions would be:

    - what zoom range would make sense if I expect to be out a lot and taking pictures of photogenic creatures like Wallabies, Cassowaries and poisonous spiders? Will 150mm max be enough?
    - while I don't mind looking silly with a big lens on my GM1, would something like the Panasonic 100-300 be practically usable without modification (I saw someone has done it, but I'm assuming it that doesn't mean it's a good thing to do...)
    - how important is the image stabilization (I'm not gonna be carrying a tripod around at all times)? Is it worth even looking at non-panasonic lenses? So far I have only been looking at the Panasonic 100-300,40-150 and 45-200mm.
    - Budgetwise I was not wanting to spend more than around 300£, but I go a bit above for a good choice I guess I could justify the expense somehow :rolleyes:

    I'd be really grateful for any advice and thank you in advance.

  2. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    I regularly use large, heavy-ish legacy lenses on my GX1 which is also small, though not as small as the GM1. It is somewhat awkward, but mostly just due to the need to manually focus and readjust your grip if the lens barrel zooms. With autofocus and image stabilization, your life will be infinitely easier in this respect. Image stabilization just gives a massive amount of additional flexibility with your usage envelope on a telephoto. Even using the 1/focal length rule, blur with a telephoto is a distinct possibility. Image stabilization means you can use that rule with total confidence. And the Olympus zooms aren't optically any better than the Panasonic options, so there's that.

    For a GM1 specifically, I might actually recommend the 45-175mm PZ over the 45-200 or even the 45-150. The optics are better then the 45-200 (probably the same as the 45-150), it's smaller than the 45-200 (even when collapsed!) and zooms entirely internally so it will be much easier to handle. It had a bit of a reputation for bad shutter shock when it was released, but the GM1 has an electronic shutter, so that's not really a concern in the same way as the Copal shutters on the likes of my GX1.

    It's also available for pretty reasonable prices these days, a lot cheaper than when it debuted.
  3. Darren Bonner

    Darren Bonner Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 1, 2013
    Poole UK
    The panasonic 45-150 is a very good lens at a reasonable cost, small and half the weight of the 45-200 and sharper too.
    The 100-300 is doable, hold and support the lens with the left hand and operate the camera with the right hand.
  4. Florian

    Florian New to Mu-43

    Dec 9, 2014
    Hi guys, thanks for the answers. :)

    I regards to my first question, would 150 or 200mm be enough to get decent shots from non-caged wildlife then?
  5. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    I am going to have to say no, even with my 75-300 I am always wanting more reach. The 100-300 is not that big and you will be happy for the extra reach when you need it.
  6. bg2b

    bg2b Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 22, 2009
    Berkeley Heights, NJ
    I think the 100-300 is just too big on a GM1. The Panasonic 45-175 is probably the best choice. Whether that's enough depends on how big the animals are and how skittish they are. I suspect for something biggish like a cassowary or wallaby you'd probably manage with 175mm.
  7. pellicle

    pellicle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 10, 2010
    Southport, OzTrailEYa

    cassowaries are common only in specific places ... give them a wide berth. They are not to be tangled with (you've been warned).

    150mm may be fine for some things, but personally I settled on a 200mm lens when I bought the 45-200 (which I sold).

    I would think that the 100-300 would be a great choice to compliment the 12-32 or the stuff you have in that range...

    I have no idea what you are talking about with modifications mentioned because as far as I know it just works ... would be curious to hear differently

    my 200mm is an FD and I use a GF and GH1 camera, so no stabilisation there. However if you are using a GM holding them steady to take a shot (without a support) is relatively impossible. So if you are intending anything in forests then probably you'll prefer the OIS.

    add in a polairiser filer to your stuff for in forest shots as the washout from reflections off leaves desaturates everything.

    Have Fun