We’ve taken a look at the Panasonic lenses that we’ve reviewed to date, crunched some numbers and have combined the results in a round-up that features the highest scoring lenses so you can make a more informed choice when making your next purchase.
Don’t see your favourite lens on the list? This could be because it didn’t score high enough or we’ve simply not put it to the test yet but do feel free to share your comments below on what Panasonic lenses you enjoy using the most.
As well as our Panasonic recommendations, we have a top 35 list featuring the best Micro Four Thirds lenses that you may want to peruse. Plus, there are many more top lists in our ‘Best Gear’ section.
1. Panasonic Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm f/1.2 ASPH –
The Panasonic Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm f/1.2 ASPH is a prime lens for the Micro Four Thirds format and it sits in our number one spot thanks to the level of sharpness as well as the low levels of CA and distortion it offers. It also features an effective optical stabilisation system, Nano Surface coatings to suppress flare and a manual aperture ring to improve handling. When you combine all of this together, it’s hard not to love this lens.
2. Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 35-100mm f/2.8 Asph OIS –
Optically, it’s hard to fault the Panasonic Lumix G Vario 35-100mm f/4.0-5.6 Asph Mega O.I.S. lens as it performs much better than it’s bargain asking price of around £265. It’s compact enough to be barely noticeable in a camera bag which makes it perfect for travel and there’s really not much to complain about at all. Those looking for a compact telephoto lens should certainly add this lens to their list of considerations.
3. Panasonic Lumix 35-100mm f/4-5.6 Asph Mega OIS –
The Panasonic Lumix G Vario 35-100mm f/4-5.6 is a fine lens that is priced reasonably, is compact, lightweight and offers excellent performance. Sharpness levels are good and the fact that the lens is weather-sealed puts another positive tick in its box. Focusing is fast, IS performs well and distortion levels are kept to a minimum. For a telephoto that reaches 100mm, the lens size is excellent and it would fit well in a travel backpack or out on a day trip where you don’t want ot be weighed down with lots of kit.
4. Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 II –
The Panasonic Lumix G VARIO 14-42mm II has excellent sharpness throughout the zoom range and offers excellent value for money. With its compact design, light weight, optical stabilisation and good build quality, it’s a lens that impressed us so it should leave a good impression with you, too.
5. Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 Asph –
This is one of those times when a lens manufacturer just gets everything right. This optic is sharp, lightweight, compact, nice to use and not overly priced. Some people may find the lack of a manual focus ring is not for them, but even so, it’s difficult to not be impressed by this little lens. The Panasonic G 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6collapses down to just 24mm long, making it super compact and it’s perfect for shooting in tight spaces at short focal lengths. There is a minimum focusing distance of 20cm at 12-20mm making it great for macro work, too.
6. Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 12mm f/1.4 ASPH. –
Regardless of the technical results, the Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 12mm f/1.4 ASPH. produces images that look fantastic. Some might argue that’s actually what a lens is for and we need to look no further than that. When we do examine the detail, the overall standard of sharpness is very good indeed but becomes outstanding at the centre over most of the aperture range. This high standard shows up the effects of diffraction with the fairly soft results at f/16 and it is probably a wise decision not to include the option of f/22.
No lens is perfect, but we have here a very exciting prospect for MFT format users with a lens that provides a unique bright f/1.4 aperture and excels at producing superb images.
7. Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm f/2.8 –
Performance-wise, the Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm f/2.8 lens delivers sharp, contrasty images with low CA and distortion, which should be expected of a pro-spec zoom such as this. It’s weather-sealed, which is always a bonus, and the compact size means it won’t take up too much space in your kit bag. Plus, the price has dropped considerably since launch which gives it even more appeal.
8. Panasonic Lumix G 20mm II f/1.7 –
The Lumix G 20mm f/1.7 is a pancake lens that is extremely compact and lightweight weighing only 100g. Build quality is good and with the same excellent image quality as the original 20mm lens, reasonable value for money and compact size, this lens is an excellent choice for Micro Four Thirds users.
9. Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmar 100-400mm f/4.0-6.3 ASPH Pros
Sometimes there are few choices in certain niches. This Panasonic Leica DG 100-400mm lens fits its purpose very well indeed, at a price which, although high, is reasonable in its class. If we want a high-quality optic for sports, birding, wildlife, photojournalism and other long range applications then this is it. The close focusing that brings closer subjects into range is a bonus.
10. Panasonic LUMIX G 25mm f/1.7 ASPH –
Much of the performance of the Panasonic LUMIX G 25mm f/1.7 ASPH is exemplary, especially considering the modest cost. The only real drawback is the susceptibility to flare, which is very evident in shots taken into the light. If this can be accepted then the lens is, without a doubt, an excellent proposition. Sharpness is excellent, CA and distortion are both low and it’s very well made. The close focusing capabilities of the lens are worth a mention, too, as they’re very good.
11. Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 Asph.
The Panasonic Lumix 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 Asph Power OIS lens has some remarkable properties and is incredibly versatile. The low levels of distortion and CA are truly impressive and overall central sharpness is of a high standard, starting off as outstanding.
Lenses have different applications and this Lumix seems an ideal light, compact travel lens that will deliver the goods over a wide range of subject matter.