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Panasonic adds to Lumix lens line with 12-60mm and 100-400mm zooms

Create: 02/27/2016 - 15:11
Panasonic Lumix 12-60mm and 100-400mm zooms.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Both lenses are weather- and dust-resistant
  • The lenses' optical image stabilization can work with Lumix cameras that have body stabilization
  • The 100-400mm zoom is a Leica design

Panasonic has two new zooms for its Lumix, as well as Olympus bodies using the Micro Four Thirds mount.

The two lenses sit on opposite ends with one being 12-60mm and the other 100-400mm.

Both lenses are water- and dust-resistant and have both Lumix Power Optical Image Stabilization that is compatible with Lumix Dual Optical Image Stabilization that is built into certain Lumix camera bodies. At the moment, that’s just one body – the Lumix GX8.

Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH. POWER O.I.S., US$499.99
This is intended to be a kit lens that offers a bit more focal length on each end compared with other kit lenses. It has a full-frame equivalent focal length of 24-120mm.

The lens uses 11 elements in nine groups with one extra-low dispersion element and three aspherical lenses. The aperture is formed by seven blades.

The close-focus distance is 7.8 inches (20cm).

The lens uses 58mm filters. It is 2.6 x 2.8 inches (66 x 71mm) and weighs 7.4 oz (210 grams).

A lens shade is included.

The lens is expected to ship mid-May 2016.

Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmar 100-400mm f/4-6.3 ASPH. POWER O.I.S., US$1,799.99
With a full-frame equivalent range of 200-800mm, this could be a popular lens sports and wildlife photographers.

A tripod collar is included and even with the inclusion of image stabilization, a tripod should be considered a requirement when using long telephotos.

This Leica-branded lens has 20 elements in 13 groups, including one aspherical extra-low dispersion element, one Ultra Extra-Low Dispersion element and two extra-low dispersion elements. The aperture is formed by nine blades.

In addition to a zoom lock, which prevents lens creep when transporting the lens, there are several other controls near the base of the lens: a focus-limiter switch, an autofocus-manual focus switch and the ability to turn off image stabilization, which usually is recommended when the lens is mounted on a tripod.

Close focus distance is 4.3 feet (1.3 meters), and there is a built-in lens shade that can be slid forward.

The lens accepts 72mm filters. It is about 3.3 x 6.8 inches (83 x 171.5mm) and weighs 2.2 pounds (985 grams).

The lens is expected to be available by mid-March 2016.

About the Author

Mike Elek is a longtime journalist and was one of the original editors for The Wall Street Journal Online. He also has worked as a reporter and editor in Pittsburgh; Philadelphia; Vineland, N.J.; Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; New York City; and Hong Kong. He is a U.S. Air Force veteran. He shoots with film and digital cameras.