My Top 5 MFT Lenses for Traveling
I have been a user of the Micro Four Thirds System for around 4 Years now. I am also a Canon and Sony user and no camera is perfect. In this post, I’d like to talk about my favourite 5 Lenses for the MFT System, considering their small sensor size and other pros and cons.
Panasonic 12-35mm f2,8 (= 24-70mm on Full Frame Sensor)
I have used this lens ever since working with the GH3 3 years ago. It was my only lens for a long time and I got all the shots i wanted without going crazy on focal lengths. Of course sometimes I wished to get closer to subjects and with the crop on the GH4 when shooting in 4K, I wished the lens would be wider than just 12mm. Nothing is perfect. But I need to say that the continuous aperture of f2.8 was a charm and the weather proof sealing of the lens saved my ass a couple times. It is very durable, versatile, very sharp and can the focus and zoom ring are smooth as butter. If ever you should get an MFT body, I recommend getting this lens as an all-rounder.
Panasonic 42,5mm f1,7 (= 85mm on Full Frame Sensor)
This is my go to lens to create shallow depth of field. I have compared this to the Panasonic 42,5mm f1,2, the Olympus 45mm f1,8 and the Voigtländer Nokton 42,5mm f0.95 and figured out that this lens is what I would prefer to buy. This lens has IS, the Olympus doesn’t. That means with a GH5 I get Dual IS and with camera bodies that don’t have a 5-axis IBIS, I still get the IS of the lens and can work hand held. This lens has autofocus and the Voigtländer doesn’t. I can take quick pictures with it without having to rely on manual focus. That leaves us with the Panasonic 42,5mm f1.7 vs. Panasonic 42,5mm f1.2. I basically went for the cheaper version, as it is extremely light weight and super small. I’d love to have the f1.2 of course, but I would have a big, heavy and quite expensive lens. I can’t live with that. The f1.2 also has a manual aperture ring that you can switch to “A” for automatic to control the aperture with your camera. The problem is that you have to make sure you don’t accidentally turn the ring, or else you can’t control the aperture with your camera anymore.
This lens is also my best lens when I need a tele lens in low light situations. At f1.7 and the extra teleconvertion option on my GH5 it gives me an additional x2,7 reach of 115mm (= 230mm on Full Frame) at FullHD. And that WITHOUT changing lenses!
Voigtländer Nokton 25mm f0.95 (= 50mm on Full Frame Sensor)
Knowing that the micro four thirds system is working with a smaller sensor and thus can not capture as much light as a full frame sensor, you need to compensate this with a fast lens. Everybody needs a low light monster
and for me, this is it. From the Nokton Series of Voigtländer, which all have an aperture of f0.95, I chose this focal length to be the best for frequent use. The field of view of 50mm (FF) is the most natural focal length that resembles the human eye the most. It is not too wide and not too close and perfect for cinematic shots with shallow depth of field. I love the metal build and the image quality. You can focus on objects that are very close to the lens and the focus rings are smooth as butter. A downside is that it doesn’t have auto focus. But that’s about it.
Panasonic 7-14mm f4.0 (14-28mm on Full Frame Sensor)
I found myself missing a good wide angle lens that gives you this wide stylistic look. I film a lot of landscapes and this is when I decide to take this lens. It has a closed aperture, which helps with sharp and crisp images for landscapes and real estate videos. As the lens is a bit curves, there is no way you can attach a proper pol filter, but luckily I found a company that produces adapters for this lens so you can attach 86mm filters on it. They are called PV Gear and I am very thankful for them. I also have to mention the weight and size of this lens. It’s super light and quite small. Perfect for traveling.
Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8 (=70-200mm on Full Frame Sensor)
Everyone know this focal length. It is the equivalent to the famous large white Canon lenses but like a fourth of the size and weight. This is a perfect telephoto lens with an aperture of f2.8 for all focal lengths. It gives you good shallow depth of field, is weather proof and super sharp. This lens is like the big brother of the 12-35mm from Panasonic.
Lenses to buy at amazon:
Panasonic 12-35mm f2.8 – http://amzn.to/2rG6JED
Panasonic 42,5mm f1.7 – http://amzn.to/2qPLf9n
Voigtländer 25mm f0.95 – http://amzn.to/2qUuBjY
Panasonic 7-14mm f4.0 – http://amzn.to/2qUuKnw
Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8 – http://amzn.to/2rGcS41