Archive for January 2017

If I had to choose only 1 lens ...

... it would be the Panasonic Lumix 14-140mm F3.5-5.6.

Several times during the last year I felt the urge to write about this lens because I like it so much. The first version of the Panasonic 14-140mm was the reason why I initially choose a micro four thirds camera and I have used it almost exclusively for many years (for example for most of the carcolor project). Only since last year I own the new version of the 14-140mm lens, which is lighter, smaller, has a slightly larger aperture, and is clearly better optically. From a practical point of view, the smaller size and lower weight result in a much more handy kit for carrying around all day long on hikes, climbs, and skitours and the zoom mechanism is much improved (it does not extend by itself as in the first version). In hindsight, it was a mistake having waited so long to upgrade to the new version. 

 European golden plover, Iceland

In my opinion, the Panasonic Lumix 14-140mm F3.5-5.6 is the one lens that embodies all the advantages of the micro four thirds format: small bodies and lenses that ensure an image quality that is far better than what most photographers ever need. There are of course alternatives for this lens with larger apertures and supposedly better optical quality. However, these advantages are payed for with a considerably larger size, narrower zoom range, and consequently much restricted versatility. And they also cost a lot more. During last year, I have had the chance to compare several micro four thirds lenses (zooms, but also prime lenses) as well as different cameras (micro four thirds, full frame bodies, and Sigma cameras with a foveon sensor). The differences between lenses on the same micro four thirds body were much smaller than I would have expected and I am certain that most people would not be able to tell the difference in real world photographs. By far the biggest difference was seen in the files obtained from the Sigma Foveon sensor. The files from the Sigma DP merrill cameras are just in another category altogether - but this is not the topic of this contribution!

I do of course not suggest to photograph with only one lens and camera. For example, myself I am a macro enthusiast and use (at least at the moment) my macro lens almost as often as the 14-140mm. On most hikes and excursions I carry a micro four thirds camera, the 14-140mm lens, and a macro lens and am thus covered for almost all eventualities. For me this is the must-have equipment that I would always want to have with me; the other cameras and lenses are sometimes useful, nice to have, or just a pleasure to use, but they do not do much more than my "essential" kit.

All the photographs in this blog post have been taken with the new 14-140mm lens during last year - I hope you enjoy. For the foreseeable future, this is the last article, because I have other priorities for this year and will thus update this blog very rarely or not at all. In the meantime, you are welcome to visit the photo galleries on my website, which will be updated from time to time with new photographs and galleries.

All the best, Florian.

 Pakgil, Iceland

Bernese Alps, Switzerland

Mutteristock, Switzerland

 Redwing, Iceland

Speicherstadt, Hamburg, Germany

 Harpa, Reykjavik, Iceland

Holocaust memorial, Berlin, Germany

2017/01/21 by Florian Freimoser
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