How do you like your Panasonic Lumix 45-200mm lens?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Amin Sabet, Dec 27, 2009.

  1. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
  2. cosinaphile

    cosinaphile Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 26, 2009
    new york city
    i think that optically its fine but not truely outstanding , what i find bad is the focus by wire for manual focus solution , it is the worst focusing implimentation in the history of lenses , its like trying to focus a tuning knob on an old audio set that spins endlessly in any direction

    i think the 14-42 panny is outstanding i use it on my ep1 and gf1 and have traded the oly kit zoom and some cash for the 17 mm plus finder, it my only af m4\3 prime thus far
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  3. bebrox

    bebrox Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 29, 2009
    Brilliant for Portraiture

    I have found this lens really good for portrait type shots, the Bokeh is pleasing.

    With the G1 I find that the built-in flash is that good that I can use this lens to take shoulder-up shots of family indoors.
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  4. gravox

    gravox New to Mu-43

    Jan 3, 2010
    I am very happy with the Pana 45-200 lens on Pana G1. I compared it with the Canon 70-300 IS and 55-250 IS on Canon 450D. The Panasonic lens was sharper than the two Canons on every test. I suspect this was partly due to more reliable focussing with the Pana combination. Maybe I got lucky but my 45-200 seems to perform better than I would have expected from the Photozone and SLR Gear test results. I did not have a problem with the MF system which works fine with a little familiarisation.
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  5. Marcus

    Marcus New to Mu-43

    Jan 7, 2010
    Good for portraits and large wildlife

    I have to agree about using this for head and shoulder or face portraits. I use it at 45 mm F/4 for the fastest shutter speeds indoors, usually on a tripod if it is not very bright in the room. My sister's house is lit like a cave. :friends: I'll go up to ISO 1600 w/o flash if I have to. Here's an example at 56 mm.


    It is also good for wildlife that isn't too small or skittish, such as deer or large wading birds like great egrets. For smaller birds, an 800 or 1000 mm equiv. is needed.

    I'm glad Panny made the 14-45 and 45-200 with the same filters thread--they can share filters.
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  6. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    I find the 45-200 to be rather remarkable. Prior to this, I was using a Canon 100-400L on a 5D and a Zuiko 70-300 on an E-420. The Panasonic is competitive in image quality, and the size is of course a no-brainer.

    Although I also have the 14-140, which is a more versatile lens, I enjoy the 45-200 because the image stabilization seems more effective for stills (I'm wondering whether this is because the 14-140 is optimized for video) and because of the extra reach.

    As others have said above, I find the bokeh of this lens pleasing, and it has proven to be a good lens for head/shoulder portraits.
  7. Novaron

    Novaron Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 3, 2010
    Falls Church VA
    Really like the 45-200. It and the Panasonic G1 enabled me to get a credible pictuire of Tony Bennett at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival while in the crowd and behind some tall folks that I never would have been able to get with a normal SLR. Also got a lot of images from the festival using that lens. I will upload later.
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  8. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    Real Name:
    I received my 45-200 last night (from Panasonic, had received the GF1 on monday). My initial impressions are that it is quite compact, and a solid build. Images turned out pretty sharp (Despite atrocious shutter speeds in my house, at night!).

    I had intended to replace my Pentax 55-300mm lens with this one, but my initial impression is that it doesn't really fit with the feel of the GF1. I read in several of the amazon reviews of this lens that having the optional viewfinder makes the lens work better, as with the long range of the zoom holding the camera to your eye both steadies yourself more (which is true) and gives better handling to the lens as well. At this point I am not ready to shell out for the VF too, and may end up sticking with my Pentax 55-300mm, and go pancake/adapted lenses only on the gf1. I am thrilled with the pancake!

    Back to the 45-200 - it feels as though the GF1 body is sharply sticking into my hand, and that I am not able to cradle the lens/body nearly as well as a result. Portrait orientation is also quite uncomfortable. I want to like this lens, so will work with it for a few outings before ultimately deciding. I am sure it works very well on the G1/GH1 cameras from a handling perspective, but just feels out of place on the GF1.

    Just some initial thoughts!
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  9. pellicle

    pellicle Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 10, 2010
    Southport, OzTrailEYa
    Real Name:

    I've had it about a week now, its "ok" but not my choice if you are after optical quality (unlike say other 100-300 zooms I've owned).

    Overall its features put it in good stead to be a little ahead of an adapted lens, more so if you are definitely in the "I must have AF" group

    I've noticed a few interesting things about it, which I've put on my blog here.

    I compare it against the FD 200 f4


    the 45-200 vignettes a lot

    FD vs Pana
    4386138233_71c7bbf999_m. 4386901040_286642d1a7_m.
    AF on that shot drove me spakko hunting around all the time, so I used manual focus. It just doesn't like that sort of target it seems, as I did not have this problem with other images.

    There are other issues I go into over there such as noticing that at the same aperture in manual exposure less light is recorded using the Panasonic lens ... in use it compensates by choosing a slower shutter at the same f-stop as the FD does. You're gonna need that OIS.

    if you get it for under US$300 then its probably worth it...
  10. cstevens

    cstevens Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 11, 2010
    An interesting thread.

    If I do eventually get a G1 then this lens will be on my list, otherwise I agree it's going to be out of place on the GF1
  11. f6cvalkyrie

    f6cvalkyrie Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 12, 2010
    Brussels, Belgium

    I have this lens for more than a year now, and I have "mixed feelings" about it.

    If you get tempted to shoot handheld at FL above 100mm, be prepared to have few keepers. Not a fast lens, high ISO to be avoided on the G1, thus, longer shutter speeds. Need a tripod !!

    At shorter FL up to 100mm, good lens, excellent AF, nice bokeh, quite short minimum focusing distance ... good lens for close-ups !

    C U
  12. Glenn S

    Glenn S Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 1, 2010
    I like my 45-200 and I recently gave up Canon 100-400 and 70-200 f4L IS on a 50D.

    It does vignette, autofocus can be hit or miss and you really need the EVF with the GF1 but as a compromise against having it with you, or not having a 100-400 coz it's too heavy, then I'm satisfied.

    This is at 200mm.

  13. AlanT

    AlanT Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 8, 2010
    Perth, Scotland
    Having never used a lens this long before, I have nothing to compare it against. I've not really had the chance to use it in earnest yet but for the few shots I've taken with it I'm perfectly happy. For the money, relatively small size and weight, it seemed like a lens worth getting.

    I'm using it on a GF1 without the EVF and agree that at the long end on this combination it needs to be steadied on something.

    103mm @ f/4.7
  14. CanonDude

    CanonDude Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 18, 2010
    Ft. Worth Texas
    I just bought this lens from B&H as a long reach lens for my new Oly E-PL1. And after the first try, I am impressed with it.
    This shot is with the lens IS off and the camera IS turned on. But, this shot is on the wide end of the lens.

    Olympus E-PL1, ISO 200, 1/800th. f4.5, 45mm, Lightroom 3 Beta,
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  15. bilzmale

    bilzmale Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mine arrived Friday and first impressions are favourable. Not as quick to focus, fast, sharp or contrasty as my 50-200mm 4/3 but I can't quibble with the price. This test shot (no pp) was taken at 200mm with sun behind - I was happy.

  16. Boyzo

    Boyzo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 3, 2010
    A very satisfactory lens that can reach out to get the image you can see in the distance .. needs good light as all long lenses do.....

    I have a very good copy so its quite sharp .... AF and handling are excellent easy to use Light and compact !!!! .....

    The lens reaches out gives you possibilities beyond your feet or access.

    Its not all about Leica sharpness or primes.
    Albert Hall Launceston
    Morning fog the Launceston Tamar river
    Launceston thru' Hotel windows "Beauty passing the Ugly"
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  17. texascbx

    texascbx Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 30, 2009
    I'm liking mine pretty good.

    <embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" quality="high" width="800" height="600" align="" src="" pluginspage="" allowFullScreen="true" flashvars="id=113409160&background=0xf5f5f5&delay=5&transition=2&loop=1&random=0&allowfs=1&allowthumbs=1&showlink=1&allowtitles=0&showtitles=1&autostart=1&allowtopbar=1&allowcontrols=1&transparent=0&loop_music=1&frame=0xcccccc&preloader="></embed>
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  18. CanonDude

    CanonDude Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 18, 2010
    Ft. Worth Texas
    This is a chimney at what is the remains of an old WWII Training facility at Camp Howze, near Gainesville Texas.
    This shot is at 200mm, Camera default jpg 'Vivid'. Lightroom 3 auto processed with preset Punch, but 0 sharpening.
    Reviews I have read said this lens was soft at 200mm, But darned if I can see that in this copy. This is full view, uncropped, and yes, I know the horizon is off.

    Oly E-PL1, Camera IS, ISO 200, f8, (Handheld)=1/800sec, 200mm, (Lightroom 3 auto+punch preset w/no sharpening.)
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  19. DownUnderDog

    DownUnderDog Mu-43 Regular

    Well this shot is truly candid, shot at Flinders Street Station, Melbourne. It shows good sharpness, bold color, and good resolution at 800 ISO. I'm not afraid to take my G1 camera and 45-200 lens to their extremes.
    "I'll keep shooting - you keep talking"
  20. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    Real Name:
    Well, I have decided to give this lens another shot. I ordered the GF1 viewfinder a couple of weeks ago, and it is in the mail as of yesterday. I get the panny EPP program pricing (guess my work does business with them). They just lowered all of their prices/discounts on lenses and cameras to a ridiculous level, so I am going to give it another shot. I think the VF will help with its general use, and I have also recently rigged a basic tilt head on my monopod, which will be helpful with the longer focal lengths. I was going to wait for the 100-300mm, but for the price I couldn't pass up giving it one more shot.

    Also picked up the 7-14mm! I couldnt resist with the lowered price. I was waiting for the 9-18mm, which I am sure will have some compromises anyway compared to the 7-14mm. I also wanted filter threads (for IR) but will live without them for the price I paid! The sad part is kissing my Pentax 12-24mm goodbye.