1. Reminder: Please use our affiliate links for holiday shopping!

The Mid-Range Zoom Desert.

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Dave in Wales, Jan 9, 2014.

  1. Dave in Wales

    Dave in Wales Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 5, 2011
    West Wales
    The Mid-Range Zoom Desert...A Decision.

    In that I mean the lack of IMVHO, of anything decent in the 40/45-200 range, seems to me to be an area that has been sadly forgotten/neglected by the big two.

    There are...
    Oly 40-150 R
    P 45-150
    P 45-175 PZ....I don't want/need PZ.
    P 45-200

    I've had the PL 45-150 and the PL 45-200 and was not overly impressed, reports on the other two aren't that good either.

    I've just acquired the 12-40 and I'm looking for a Mid-Range Zoom, the 75-300's I just don't need.

    Seems like I'm between a rock and a hard place.

    Any suggestions.
     
  2. mrjr

    mrjr Mu-43 Top Veteran

    518
    Sep 25, 2012
    It sounds like you'll have to choose the compromises you'd be willing to live with. I don't know your intended usage, but as of right now, you do have a couple options. They are:

    - The Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8. Great lens, but with perhaps less reach than you'd (ideally?) require.

    - The Olympus 4/3 50-200mm f2.8-3.5. Also an excellent lens, but large, heavy, and a slow focuser on anything but an EM-1.

    Can't really say much more beyond that, if you can't live with a. One of the kit/budget telephotos, b. an adapted MF lens, or c. Waiting for the forthcoming Oly 40-150/2.8.
     
  3. mrjr

    mrjr Mu-43 Top Veteran

    518
    Sep 25, 2012
    Also, I think it's also worth pointing out that the Panasonic 45-175 PZ is widely considered to be at least "pretty good", and better than all the other affordable zooms.

    I happen to agree that with you that I wouldn't prefer a power zoom, but if none of the other options are suitable for you, it's at least worth a look, right?
     
  4. Dave in Wales

    Dave in Wales Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 5, 2011
    West Wales
    Any lens with a constant f2.8 is going to be waaaaaay beyond my wallet.

    Why can't they produce a good zoom with modest aperture f3.5/4-f5.6 we don't all need fast lenses, can't be rocket science, and I'd bet there would be a market for it.
     
  5. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Dara
    They're all intended as kit zooms and priced accordingly. I think taken in that light, they're all pretty decent (indeed the 45-150 is more than decent). At the the high end, there's the Panasonic 35-100/2.8 and the upcoming 40-150/2.8 from Olympus.

    What's missing is the middle ground between the $300 and $1300 lenses, and between f/5.6 slow zooms and f/2.8 fast ones. A $600 or $700 40-150/4 or 40-150/3.5-4.5 with good sharpness and focusing speed would be a very nice option. Technically if you have an E-M1, a secondhand 50-200/2.8-3.5 sort of fits that bill, but the focusing is still squirrely at times.

    Also FWIW none of those Panasonics are Leica branded (so not PL).
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Doug Green
    Actually, I had a chance to carefully compare the Panasonic 45-175 PZ with the Panasonic 45-150. I found them indistinguishable from one another in terms of both optical quality (pretty good, not great) and build quality (also pretty good, not great). I kept the 45-175 because of the slightly longer reach, and the fact that it zoomed and focused internally, but not because it was any better than the 45-150 because it wasn't.
     
  7. Dave in Wales

    Dave in Wales Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 5, 2011
    West Wales
    Approx £100 more for the 'not-great' 45-175.. Internal focusing/extra 25mm throw I'm not bothered about, and PZ which I don't want/need.

    I dooo know what I and some others want/need.........a Good 40/45-150/200 f4/5.6 simple, no-frills zoom, cost about...say £300 max with hood.

    SNAG....There isn't one.
     
  8. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Doug Green
    In actual practice, the 45-175mm can zoom just like a manual zoom, using the zoom ring, and spanning the entire range in about a half a second. It's not like some other power zooms that only travel slowly across the range. And it comes with a reverse-able bayonet lens hood.
     
  9. RoadTraveler

    RoadTraveler Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 23, 2012
    x2
     
  10. Narnian

    Narnian Nobody in particular ...

    Aug 6, 2010
    Midlothian, VA
    Richard Elliott
    The 45-175 does go on sale - it has at least twice last year to around $200 here in the US when I picked mine up.

    And as noted it can be manually zoomed - and it feels pretty good IMO. And the power zoom is nice for what little video I shoot.

    The internal focus and zoom capability has another nice side effect - I never have to collapse the lens to put it back into the bag.
     
  11. RoadTraveler

    RoadTraveler Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 23, 2012
    x2

    While I have the "better" and faster 35-100, I like and use the 45-175 sometimes for it's long reach and compactness. It's a heck of a deal if you can find and buy one for $200-ish!
     
  12. Dave in Wales

    Dave in Wales Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 5, 2011
    West Wales
    This Rip-Off Britian remember, a 45-175 retails here @ £300 inc tax..........that's about $500
     
  13. RichDesmond

    RichDesmond Mu-43 Veteran

    356
    Nov 18, 2011
    What I wish we had was :43: equivalent of the Canon 70-300. About $600, excellent IQ and extremely good IS. I've got the P45-200, and while I can live with the fact that it's a little softer at the long end than the Canon I reaaally miss the outstanding stabilization the Canon lens has.
    The 70-300 and 10-22 are the two lenses that keep me from switching to :43: completely.
     
  14. laser8

    laser8 Mu-43 Veteran

    403
    Jan 29, 2013
    Mare nostrum, Istria
    +3 on the 45-175. Not stellar, but good. And it does have all the pluses already mentioned here, and a very good OIS. I know they are expensive this side of the pond - I got one from the FS section here and it costed me much less, VAT and customs included, than buying in Eu. Or, save for the 35-100.
     
  15. arch stanton

    arch stanton Mu-43 Veteran

    411
    Feb 25, 2012
    London
    Malc
    Caught in the same bind...I'm currently plotting a 35-100 from digital rev (just under £700) as they'll provide a warranty. Or monk3y on here will send one over from Japan for a chunk less than that - but no UK warranty.

    Given that the warranty doesn't cover accidental damage I'd have to claim on insurance or stump up for any repair anyway.

    I have a 14-150 which I'll sell to cover some of the cost, can't really see another option, the Oly 2.8 tele-zoom's going to cost a fortune and result in a slipped disc! IQ on my Oly is OK but I don't love it like other lenses.
     
  16. letsgofishing

    letsgofishing Mu-43 Veteran

    352
    Nov 21, 2012
    South Africa
    Mike Kaplan
    What I would like personally, is a GOOD quality 40-120 f2.8 lens that would sell for around $700....
     
  17. sgreszcz

    sgreszcz Mu-43 Veteran

    439
    Oct 7, 2012
    I used to love the 70-300 vrII on my Nikon aps-c. The range and sharpness were great. Well, everything but the size :)
     
  18. RoadTraveler

    RoadTraveler Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 23, 2012
    I would too, but it might be a little large!
     
  19. RichDesmond

    RichDesmond Mu-43 Veteran

    356
    Nov 18, 2011
    The other thing that would be nice would be some good f4 zooms, or f2.8-4. Smaller, lighter and cheaper than the f2.8 ones, and very useful for what I shoot.
    But really, it's hard to complain. It's amazing that we have as many stellar lenses as we do given the age of the system.
     
  20. humzai

    humzai Mu-43 Veteran

    410
    Apr 17, 2012
    The Panasonic 100-300mm isn't very large and is only a bit larger then the Panny 45-200mm. If you can fit the 45-200mm you shouldn't have an issue with the 100-300mm. The 50-200m isn't a great option as it is quite large compared to the other choices. I think the 75-300mm olly should do you well. Is there a reason you would not rather get it?

    I would save up and get the 35-100mm or the 40-150mm were I you. Or just take a vacation to somewhere cheaper and bring back a nice new lens. Canada has great lens prices.


    Panasonic is working on a small 35-100mm lens to go along with the GM1 so that might be an option soonish?