Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest “pancake” system

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

In anticipation of the second version of the Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review, which was recently announced at Photokina 2014, we decided to do a review of the original lens. Fortunately, almost certainly the updated version will differ only slightly modified body finish, coupled with the new style lenses 12-35mm and 35-100mm, which were developed specifically for the GM family of miniature cameras micro 4/3 system.

Pancake Panasonic Lumix G 14mm F2.5 ASPH was released at the end of 2010 and became one of the first wide-angle compact companies. With a retail price of $ 330 and there is a direct competitor in the form of a little more cumbersome Panasonic 20mm F1.8 almost 1 stop brighter for the same price, this pancake has not received special popularity. Another thing is that on ebay version of calm can be purchased 2 times cheaper, and for $ 160-170 – interest is a completely different.

With a diameter of 56 mm and a thickness of only 21 mm, it is still among the most compact glass as Panasonic, and Olympus. And other manufacturers cannot boast of such a small lens, with the exception that the Pentax and Q series.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

Pancake made from high quality matte plastic, designed and built in Japan. Maybe that’s why the body feels very solid – no flex and no backlash are mounted to a metal bayonet. Weight in this case is 55 grams! Also focusing ring moves smoothly and clearly, although his progress could be less, in my quite complete. Unfortunately, the body is not protected from dust and moisture, and dust accumulated just might interfere with little manual focusing during video recording.


Focal length of the hero of our review is 28 mm, which is enough for shooting architecture, general plans for indoor and landscapes. Due to the viewing angle, a little more classical normal 35mm lens, it is convenient to deal with and street photography. In the crowd is easier, but when shooting outdoor portraits have come closer at your own risk, although as a result of this photo will benefit – it will be more intimate, but due to the size and appearance even in combination with large mirrorless cameras you likely to be mistaken for the layman, and in connection with this ratio will be more favorable.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

The work of AF specifically say nothing – it is virtually silent and fast, cannot be said about the Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review, which, unlike of the pancake, the whole lens system is completely inside the body moves


Regarding the optical characteristics of glass used in the circuit elements 5 6 groups, of which 3 – aspheric. Distortion, unfortunately, typical of this lens design and crop 2 – they are big enough. However, the camera Panasonic, Olympus and correct them automatically. Chromatic aberration in the normal range. Noticeable only at the corners, especially at the aperture, but this deficiency in the editor is perhaps the easiest to handle.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

The sharpness of the lens Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review can be estimated from the plate below. Its data are taken from the site photozone.de and transferred to a better perception of the system of evaluation on a scale of 1 to 100.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

In interpreting these data, I note that, although aperture lens is sharp enough at the edges of the frame, it is unlikely you’ll be shooting the general plans for the full aperture, and when shooting close image will still be blurred out of focus. The exception here – Night Scene, for which, moreover, f2.5 is often lacking.

Also say that on subjective feelings glass not much sharper second version whale lens Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review 14-42 F3.5-5.6 II, at least on the diaphragm F3.5.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

It is worth noting that the hood complete with a lens is not. But at this focal length, you can do without it, the optical characteristics of the glass contribute to this, but if you want – to use the ring from some cheap Chinese filter or buy on ebay for a few dollars a very stylish hood, wind on any lens with a filter diameter of 46 mm.

Alternatives – Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 15mm F1.7. Freshly lens sold under the patronage of the German company Leica, taken as a benchmark of quality. At $ 600 bulkier and heavier hero of the review, the advantages – 1 stop aperture and improved optical layout.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

Olympus 12mm F2.0. The premium lens in a metal case for $ 800, has long been the lightest wide-Prime in the system. Not without flaws, but the glass high level in all respects.

Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review. The smallest "pancake" system

Olympus 15mm F8.0. The toy lens-cap for $ 50 and a constant aperture (aperture size does not change). Focus – only manually using the lever on the right side. The quality of the image corresponds to the dimensions and price.

Liked Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review:

  • Price for version, taken from the whale.
  • The build quality – «Made in Japan».
  • Dimensions and weight are minimal.
  • Fast and ultra-quiet autofocus.
  • Good image quality in general.

Did not like Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review:

  • I would like to higher.
  • Aperture F2.5 in some cases is not enough.
  • Distortion could be smaller.
  • The housing is not protected against ingress of water and dust.

Resume – Panasonic 14mm F2.5 review

As a result, we have a well-assembled miniature pancake. With one hand Panasonic Lumix G 14mm F2.5 ASPH – is a budget version of the wide-angle lens, optically good, but not outstanding lens, on the other – a high-aperture lens razor sharp with the same or greater viewing angle is simply does not exist for any of the systems. So the choice is yours: whether you need the ultimate compact without compromising comfort or are you willing to spend money on a more expensive professional glass.

Read another very interesting article about alternative energy of the Sun, water and air.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.