The perfect M4/3 lens, the Panasonica LEICA 25mm DG Summilux by Massimiliano Bruschi
I’m Massimiliano, I write form Italy.
It’s almost a year that I read daily your nice blog, finding it very helpful and full of great shots from the you and your readers.
Your review of the Panasonic LEICA 25mm for M4/3 and the OM-D review convinced me to buy the Panasonic Leica lens on December 2012.
One year ago I bought, also after reading your review, the Panasonic GF2 with the 14mm pancake lens, in addition to my Canon DSLR body (APS-C) and lenses, just for having something light for travel and “easy shot” occasions.
The GF2 was on sale, with a price for February 2012 very good, considering that I had bought the camera from a megastore of my city (Ferrara).
And the pancake lens was the kit lens that I was searching for, not interested in another 28-90mm equivalent low quality zoom…
I’ve used the GF2 with the pancake in one trip to Zanzibar in March 2012, and I was pleased to see the quality of the amazing M4/3 system, reaching and sometimes surpassing the result of the entry-level DSLR cameras I’m familiar to.
After reading your review, I decided to buy the Panasonic Leica 25mm DG Summilux, and after the unboxing, I’ve never detached it form the GF2, using it so often that now it’s my first chose when I want to take some shots.
The lens is something superb, and I think that like the other Olympus primes (17mm pancake not included) is the perfect companion for any M4/3 body for how is searching for good image quality from this tiny system.
Of course, there are some great alternatives from third-party manufacturer, but this lens has the great advantage of a blazing fast and near perfect autofocus motor that give you great results, in any condition.
I think I’m another one that has experimented the pleasure of having a high quality and very low weight system, finding the same magic experience of shooting that I was feeling with the old OM-10 of my father when I was a child.
And I’ve to say that this lens helped very much…
Here attached you can find three shots taken with this setup (GF2 and Panasonic Leica 25mm), processed from RAW with Aperture.
I hope those can give to you some inspiration 🙂
Agreed lovely shots
Love the 25mm, the Panasonic lenses produce nicer photos with the Panasonic sensors in my opinion and I’d recommend anyone shooting them with just an omd to also pick up a cheap Panasonic body. I’ve got the omd and the gf3 and the gf3 complements the Olympus nicely. The colours the 14mm renders with the older Panasonic sensors are beautiful
According to more or les objective imatests the Pana 20 1.7 and the Pana/Leice 25 don’t have that much air between them (all peak at roughly the same levels and at aperture 4), neither does the Olympus 17 1.8 in resolution and the Oly lens has TADA…..a depth of field chart…..now how about that.
But the biggest improvement you can make using an Oly is going the DxO route. For optimal lensfault correction you just need that program. It should be bundled with every EM-5 since CA is abundant in all micro 4/3 lenses (except indeed the Pana Leica machine I will admit) due to their design. And since Olympus does not correct CA in camera….well that sort of leaves DxO as the most cost effective optimized solution.
When I owned a OM-D, I purchased Steve’s 25mm PanaLeica when he sold it here. Wonderful lens and I used it for about 85% of my photos. I had all the great lenses for the OM-D (even the CS 17/.095) and this 25mm was by far my favorite. Most of it had to do with the perfect focal length, but it performed with the best.
I agree with you completely about the Panasonic Leica 25mm DG Summilux. I have 8mm, 12mm, 25mm, and 45mm lenses in my m4/3 kit, but the Leica 25mm f/1.4 is always on the camera body unless I specifically need another focal length (typically the 12mm f/2). IMO, it has to be one of the top two lenses in the m4/3 realm, the other being the Zuiko 75mm f/1.8.
I like them. I think I need to send in some pics from the gf1 and the 45mm or the 20mm. Better yet. The fuji XE1 with the 35 1.4. All great lenses and cameras. I will use dogs instead of pussy cats. Blair
Massimiliano – No doubt many photographers out there are going through the same conversion process you described. What about your Canon gear? Getting as much or less use these days?
My Canon gear are still used, but from the day I’ve purchased the 25mm I use them only when I need the viewfinder and the DOF of my 85mm f/1.8 for head portrait. The 25mm is at this moment my favourite lens.
I agree. It is a fantastic lens. You got some nice images. Is that your daughter? She would really appreciate and enjoy your pics of her when she grows up.
The little girl is my daughter, you are right!
Thank you Steve for publishing this little article, and thank you all for appreciation on the pics 🙂
This is the best Lens for Micro 4/3. It really is a Lecia Summilux F1.4 Aspherical for a fraction of the cost.
This lens should be shot at F1.4 all day. It is perfectly sharp at F1.4 and has a nice vignetting effect and that Leica rounding look. Yes, it is made by Panasonic but it is a Leica design and you can see it in every photo shot wide open.
Stopped down to F4 it is clinically sharp across the whole frame, one of the sharpest lenses made for M4/3 period but the real magic of this lens is at F1.4.
Great pics and a great choice in lens.
I totally concur. This lens is just fantastic. I think that this is my first post on Steve Huff regarding a thread about a lens. I usually just yawn with all this talk of bokeh but this lens is different. If I would not have known I would’ve thought these photos were from a Leica M camera. Part of the perfection is the fact that you are a great photographer too and these images are just beautiful; pin sharp with creamy bokeh and moving subject matter.
Great light in the first shot. It makes me want to go to the beach 🙂
Morning Mr. Bruschi.
In fact the 14-45 is no low quality zoom……in fact stoped down a bit to 5.6 to 8 it can produce remarcable results for a kitt lens. The 14-42 that came with the GF2 is no comparison, not mechanically (plastic versus steal bajonet mount) and by no means optically,
Wasn’t it Mr. Steve Huff who talked about the “Summicron” feeling of this lens in an old (now not more accesible) GF1 review.
And what does he say here:
Even when I bought the very 1st GF1 the kit zoom was wonderful providing decent build, sharp results and vibrant color.
But I guess you mixed up a few lenses (Pana’s the blame here, they replaced an excellent 14-45 with a mediocre 14-42 to confuse the opposition by an excellent shot in there own foot), no harm done, but next time take a bit more care about what you are saying, please.
Hi Ed, my thought about the kit zoom was based on previous experience with the Canon EF-S 18-55 that I’ve used for two years, so I promised myself to not buy any other lens like that.
I know that the first 14-45 IS not so bad, but I prefer my 14mm pancake 🙂
The 14-45 in fact can hold it’s water against the 12-35 up to a certain point. That was a great marketing trick by Pana…..how do you get people to change from APS-C sensor with mediocre kitt lenses to a micro 4/3. By offering a not to mediocre kit lens by correcting it only for (nada I suppose?)…..and correcting CA and distortion behind the sensor in software.
BTW, I have decided not to bother with the 35-100 or 12-35 and go for primes….more bang for the buck I guess…..17 1.8, 45 1.8, 60 2.8 macro and 75 1.8 loom on the horizon (not in that order I’ll go for the 60 first I think).
beatiful image, beatiful lens… I enjoy using the lens too
Really nice shots, love the colours & processing in the second. You have some really nice photos over on 500px too!