Sunday, February 28, 2016

Superzooms are not all bad

I had a nice win today: I really want(ed) to use my Panasonic 14-140mm 3.5-5.6 lens for walk-around shooting, for it covers my whole shooting range in one small lens, but somewhere inside me I had the conviction that such a compact, long-range, economical, light-weight lens could not possible be all *that* good, surely not beyond "useable in many situations". For some reason I had never really tested it with intent.
(I felt like that because that had been the situation with two other 10x zooms I had owned from companies which shall remain nameless (Nikon and Pentax) so I thought it was the norm. They both were quite unsharp at points.)

In other words I felt I was stuck between a wonderfully flexible lens which may not be good enough for exhibition pictures, or lenses which are great technically, but *much* heavier and shorter-range, and so way less practical.

But I finally today did a systematic test of the Panasonic 14-140mm lens, and what did I find: It is *great*. Not just "Good for a superzoom", but really sharp from edge to edge, over the whole range. And also even on full aperture. And neither did any color-faults or whatever stick in my eye.

Wow. My walk-around photography is saved.
(I use it on my Olympus M4/3 cameras, but it'll work on Panasonic cameras too.)

And if I may at some point need shallow Depth of Field or faster lenses, I just plop the compact primes 45mm 1.8 and the 12mm 2.0 in a pocket (two in one pocket!), and that's handled.

Don't tell too many people, because so long as most people think that no super-zoom is good enough for serious photography, this may be my "secret weapon".  :-)

(Click for big pic)
 Above, the whole frame, below, crop from it. 
(No computer sharpness applied.)

Notice it's the newer, slightly smaller, 3.5 model on the right I talk about, not the older 4.0 model (which was not bad either though). Incredible how much goodness can come in such a small package. (Just like Reece Witherspoon.)