Replacement for 12-32mm on GX9

krox

New to Mu-43
Joined
May 21, 2021
Messages
6
Hi all,

Last year I've bought Panasonic GX9 with the 12-32mm kit lens. Shortly after, I acquired Panasonic 45-150mm for tele reach. It's been a great portable setup for my walks and hikes. However, I would like to step up a little bit in quality and utility. Purpose of the lens: travelling & hiking, landscape a bit of street and semi-macro. At the moment, there are so many different choices, so I would like to ask you for advice.

What are my expectations:
  • Get a better reach (12-32mm is limiting and I don't want to swap lenses all the time)
  • Increase the IQ (characteristics?)
  • Manual focus ring (Initially thought I woudn't use it, but it is handy on my 45-150mm lens)
  • Nice to have: Close focus capability (for semi-macro)
  • Nice to have: Bokeh capabilities (Not expecting the equivalent of 2.8 on FF, but a little upgrade over the current capabilities)
  • Get a lens that is well balanced with GX9 450g body
My budget is around 600-700Eur

P.s. I've already reviewed similar thread https://www.mu-43.com/threads/which...l-12-32-f-3-5-5-6-on-a-panasonic-body.107091/ but it looks my expectations are a little bit different.

My shortlist:

Panasonic Leica 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0
+reach
+stabilised (although not sure how good is it as it's only Dual IS I.)
+100% compatibility (all lens the corrections, CAF, DFD)
+solid build quality
-mixed reviews
-big sample variation?
-quite expensive

Olympus 12-45mm f/4.0
+it's a PRO lens, high expectations (looks to be sharper than PL)
+lighter than PL
+cheaper than PL
+great build quality
-It would be Olympus lens on Pana body (will I get all lens corrections?,slower AF?, no DFD algorithms)
-smaller reach than PL
-not stabilised
-opposite zoom ring (sounds like a minor issue, but might cause a little bit of frustration when changing it with Pana lenses)

Some of the lenses I ruled out
  • Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8 and Panasonic 12-35mm f/2.8 wouldn't provide me with that much better reach.
  • Olympus 12-100mm f/4 while providing great reach, it's heavy and expensive
Some lenses which I am not sure about
  • Panasonic 14-140mm f/3.5-5.6 Great range, not sure about the IQ. 14mm wouldn't limit me that much. Can buy it for less than 700E with GX80 (Are the lenses sold with bodies equal quality as when bought separately?) Would make my 45-150mm obsolete.
  • Panasonic 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 Wouldn't be only a slight upgrade in range
 
Last edited:

JensM

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
1,030
Location
Oslo(ish), Norway
Real Name
As screename
Check out the Lumix 12-60, the PL is a great lens but it is large and heavy on the GX9, to the tune of me finding it uncomfortable if not used with the OEM add-on handgrip.

The Lumix is lighter and more in tune with the GX9s overall "concept", and by all reports not very far behind the PL in optical output. It is also weather sealed.

I have pondered getting one, but as I already am very well covered in the normal zoom range, I am somewhat hesitant, on the other hand if a cheap second hand one drops into the classifieds and I have surplus money, I will probably get it.
 

Brownie

Thread Killer Extraordinaire
Joined
Sep 3, 2018
Messages
3,768
Location
SE Michigan
Real Name
Tim
I have a GX9 and use the 12-60 f/3.5 on it regularly. The body doesn't lend itself well to large lenses. The PL 8-18 is ok but much larger becomes cumbersome.

Take a few minutes and poke around the lens showcases. A good copy of the 12-60 f/3.5 can be a thing of beauty. It ticks all of your boxes, although maybe not a big improvement in IQ because there isn't much wrong with the 12-32 to begin with.
 

BDR-529

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
793
My shortlist:

Panasonic Leica 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0

Since you have a panny body, shortlist ends here. This is the de facto lens you can see in every promo photo of panny products like latest BGH1 and it's also the one panny uses for dual-IS rating. With Leica 12-60 you get the best AF and best IBIS that panny MFT bodies can deliver. And I also like the colours and contrast a lot.

If you can afford one "good" lens, just go and buy it.

Note: if you had an olympus body, the answer would be different but unfortunately olympus lenses don't support panny dual IS (even when lens has built-in IS) and they are known to work not nearly as fast and accurately with panny AF as they do in olympus bodies.
 
Last edited:

Brownie

Thread Killer Extraordinaire
Joined
Sep 3, 2018
Messages
3,768
Location
SE Michigan
Real Name
Tim
I can't even image trying to balance and shoot the PL 12-60 on my GX9 for more than a few shots. It's a large lens. As @JensM suggested, the very size flies in the face of the entire concept.

Jens is also correct about the IQ when compared to the P 3.5 version. Just about every comparison and test done has ended up the same. A look through the showcases of both will bear this out.
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,806
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
I add my vote for the PL 12-60 2.8-4. I have used it on several trips on an E-M10.2 and don't find it unbalanced or large at all. It replaced my P 12-35 2.8, which was a good lens but I always wanted more reach. The PL 12-60 is somewhat larger than the 12-35, but just about exactly the same weight.

Concerning the O 12-45, I was tempted by that when it came out, but it isn't all that much smaller than the PL 12-60 and you WILL miss the extra reach, IMHO.
 

JLGF1

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Oct 20, 2017
Messages
741
Real Name
Jerry
PL12-60_versus_12-60-TAI.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Last edited:

ChuckG

Mu-43 Rookie
Joined
Jan 19, 2021
Messages
23
I have the Lumix 12-60 and really like it. I have read several reviews comparing it to the PL 12-60. Everything I have read has indicated the PL image quality is slightly better than the Lumix. Is it worth the cost difference? Not for me anyway. For you it might be. If possible, I recommend renting a couple of different lenses first to see how they feel with your camera. You might decide some are too large or heavy.
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,806
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
@JLGF1 , if your goal was to show that the PL 12-60 isn't all that much larger than the P 12-60, I think you succeeded admirably! :) I will just add that I think that the PL 12-60 is a close to perfect compromise on size, speed (starts at 2.8), IQ, and focal range. Other comments indeicate that some disagree, but, different strokes...
 

JensM

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
1,030
Location
Oslo(ish), Norway
Real Name
As screename
I think its more of a weight thing, the PL is 320 grams, the Lumix is 210 grams. The PL balances quite nice on the G9, not so much on the GX9, call it something of a forward pulling thing, combined with the lack of real estate for the hand on the GX9. I tend to use the 12-35 on the GX9, and that is a good feel, but the weight difference on that and the PL is just 15 grams, so there is something going on with the general size and balance, I think. :)
 

BDR-529

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
793
I'm sort of lost with some of the "problems" revealed in this thread.

1) The total weight of GX9 + PL12-60 is around 0,8kg. If someone really has problems holding it for more than 45 seconds at a time, maybe photography just isn't the right hobby? How about stamp collecting or visiting the gym every now and then? Related question: how come the weight of PL12-60 is no longer a problem when it's mounted on a heavier G9 or GH5 body?

2) The whole idea of "rangefinder"-bodies like GX9 and Pen-F is that they don't have proper grips in order to keep the body flat. This is exactly why it's nice to mount a proper lens on them instead. It's the lens that becomes grip and when you hold it on your left hand the whole kit balances perfectly (or right if you are left-handed).

3) Sure, "rangefinder" bodies do fit into a large pocket if you use pancake lens but there is no law against mounting a proper lens on them if you prefer quality and versatility over mere flatness. They all the have same IQ potential as any other MFT body that uses this 20MP Sony sensor family so why waste it on crappy kit lenses.
 
Last edited:

Brownie

Thread Killer Extraordinaire
Joined
Sep 3, 2018
Messages
3,768
Location
SE Michigan
Real Name
Tim
@JLGF1 , if your goal was to show that the PL 12-60 isn't all that much larger than the P 12-60, I think you succeeded admirably! :) I will just add that I think that the PL 12-60 is a close to perfect compromise on size, speed (starts at 2.8), IQ, and focal range. Other comments indeicate that some disagree, but, different strokes...
The reviewer specifically states the PL is better on larger cameras, cites cameras like the G9, and says not that great on cameras like the GX8 and 9. Spin it any way you like.

Large PL lenses aren't foreign to me, I have the 8-18, 50-200, and 100-400. I've used them all on my G9 and GX9. I find large lenses on the GX9 are unwieldly, while they float on the G9. However I won't discount that others may get on better with them than do I. I suppose it all depends on what you get used to.

In any event the absolute best resource we have is right here on this forum. We have showcase threads for both lenses filled with photos from photographers at all talent levels. And as they say, a picture is worth a thousand reviews.
 

JensM

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 6, 2016
Messages
1,030
Location
Oslo(ish), Norway
Real Name
As screename
I'm sort of lost with some of the "problems" revealed in this thread.

1) The total weight of GX9 + PL12-60 is around 0,8kg. If someone really has problems holding it for more than 45 seconds at a time, maybe photography just isn't the right hobby? How about stamp collecting or visiting the gym every now and then? Related question: how come the weight of PL12-60 is no longer a problem when it's mounted on a heavier G9 or GH5 body?

2) The whole idea of "rangefinder"-bodies like GX9 and Pen-F is that they don't have proper grips in order to keep the body flat. This is exactly why it's nice to mount a proper lens on them instead. It's the lens that becomes grip and when you hold it that way the whole kit balances perfectly.

3) Sure, "rangefinder" bodies do fit into a large pocket if you use pancake lens but there is no law against mounting a proper lens on them if you prefer quality and versatility over mere flatness. They all the have same IQ potential as any other MFT body that uses this 20MP Sony sensor family so why waste it on crappy kit lenses.
DPreview called, they want their passive-aggressive tone back... :whistling:
 

BDR-529

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
793
DPreview called, they want their passive-aggressive tone back... :whistling:
They can collect it any time they want. I'll just keep the sarcastic one I'm so fond of.

And I actually do a lot of shooting and even more video with GX9 + PL12-60 even though I actually bought GX9 for my daughter but learned aferwards that it's so much handier to carry around.

If I had to select only one lens I'm allowed to use on a panny MFT body, that would be PL12-60. Even now there has to be a very good reason to ever swap it for something else. In my case that's almost entirely adapted lenses or S56mm f/1.4 for low light.
 

PakkyT

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 20, 2015
Messages
4,278
Location
Massachusetts, USA
DPreview called, they want their passive-aggressive tone back... :whistling:
Perhaps but I do agree with him that people often put too much agonizing into the "handling" of a bigger lens on a smaller body. While over all weight is indeed a factor if you plan to hike or want to travel light, when it comes to the actual holding and shooting of any setup, it is all a matter of hand placement, particularly the left hand under and supporting the setup which should be placed roughly under the center of gravity of the setup. Then other than the over all weight, the handling should be about the same for any setup. The idea is you want to hold it so your right hand is only offering some stability but is not supporting weight and is free to operate controls. In particular you want to be able to press the shutter without that same hand also having to grip hard and potentially causing the act of pressing the shutter making the camera twist in your hand, especially if your shutter is anything close to being slower.

So if the original poster's concerns are about traveling light primarily then they should look at the smaller lenses. If instead they are not concerned about 100 or 200 grams here or there but want image quality and other features, then they should shop by features and price and worry less about how big the lens might appear on their camera as the bigger ones will likely be no more difficult to use than the smaller ones (assuming of course no special considerations like medical conditions that make holding anything difficult).
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,806
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
I find large lenses on the GX9 are unwieldly, while they float on the G9. However I won't discount that others may get on better with them than do I. I suppose it all depends on what you get used to.
I was sorely tempted when the GX9 first came out. I was thinking about it as a potential upgrade from my E-M10.2 (not being into video and the E-M10.3 being so mediocre in other respects). I finally decided to wait to see what Oly would come up with in the way of an upgrade (which turned out to be the E-M5.3). After reading this, I'm glad I waited. The E-M10.2 has never been praised by anyone for its grip (well, maybe a few), but apparently even it is better for holding than the rangefinder-style GX9. I think that type of camera just wouldn't be for me.
 

nstelemark

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
May 28, 2013
Messages
3,465
Location
Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada
Real Name
Larry
The 12-32 is an excellent little lens, so it is going to be difficult to get significantly better results in real shooting with one of the other lenses. Also, if you want more background separation faster aperture or more reach for tele compression is the way to go. I think you’ve got two choices and neither are on your main list - the 14-140II or the 12-100.

If reach was not a priority (ie use the 45-150) then the 12-35f2.8 is an excellent choice and will deliver results you can’t get with the 12-32.

Both the 12-35 and 14-140 balance well on smaller bodies. I am not in love with the Oly smaller zooms, because they are noticeably less balanced on smaller bodies. So where does that leave the 12-100? It’s a big heavy lens with great results, but it is a big heavy lens.
 
Joined
Jun 18, 2018
Messages
230
Location
Gloucester, UK
Real Name
Deryck
A few years ago I went through the same process and ended up with Leica 12-60 with no regrets. I tried out both 12 60s. The lumix was significantly better than my 12 32, my Leica was better still. I used it on my GX 80 with no problems but I found I needed a cheap leather half case. On my e-m10 I had the grip and it was beautifully balanced. The additional range of 60 over 40mm is wonderful. It now lives on my e-m1ii. but.... I will probably sell it this year and replace it with a 12 100 and for my e-m5 a 12-45 or the lumix 12-60
 
Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Forum GIFs powered by GIPHY: https://giphy.com/
Copyright © Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom