Panasonic’s latest addition to its LEICA DG lens line-up is a flexible photography lens that boasts 4K video-friendly features
Pre-order the LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT 50-200mm f/2.8-4.0 ASPH Power OIS lens from Wex Photo Video.
Having started the month by revealing the LUMIX TZ200 and LUMIX GX9, it looks like Panasonic will round-off its roster of February releases with a new optic from its premium LEICA DG lens range. The LEICA DG VARIO-ELMARIT 50-200mm f/2.8-4.0 ASPH Power OIS features a broad 35mm equivalent focal range of 100-400mm, along with a collection of 4K video-friendly features, and of course, Panasonic’s Power Optical Image Stabiliser — compatible with 5-axis dual IS 2.
The mid to ultra-telephoto lens’ large focal range is certainly a talking point and can even be extended, should you wish to pair it with Panasonic’s 1.4x DMW-TC14 or 2.0x DMW-TC20 teleconverters (sold separately). The LEICA DG 50-200mm features a closest focusing distance of 0.75m and maximum magnification of 0.25x (0.5x 35mm equivalent). The device has a minimum aperture of f/2.8-4.0 and a maximum aperture of f/22.
Panasonic has highlighted the optic’s suitability for a variety of disciplines including sports, wildlife, portrait and macro photography. But the LEICA DG 50-200mm isn’t just for photographers. Those wanting to shoot 4K video will find a number of relevant features. The inclusion of a micro stepper motor should ensure smooth exposure changes and focus breathing has been minimised. The focus ring has been fine-tuned for precise AF control, and a 240-fps AF drive is set to provide minimal wobbling and improved focus tracking. Add to that silent focusing and this lens could prove a tantalising prospect for both videographers and photographers.
As you’d expect from a premium LEICA DG offering, the lens is compact — only 132mm in length and weighing a mere 655g — and is splash-, dust- and freeze-proof, for additional protection while out in the field. The optic is constructed from 21 elements in 15 groups, including two ASPH, UED and UD elements, and one UHR element. The first lens group contains a UED and ED lens to help prevent chromatic aberration, and Panasonic’s Nano Surface Coating helps prevent ghosting and flaring.
About the Author
Mike Harris is Wex Photo Video’s production editor and is an experienced journalist with a passion for motorsport photography. You can view his portfolio via @MDHarrisPhoto on Instagram.