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Panasonic Leica DG Elmarit 200mm F2.8 Power OIS lens


  • announced Nov 2017, available Jan 2018
  • same weight but shorter and more expensive than the Olympus mZD 300mm f/4 PRO lens
  • it is 3x the price and almost twice as heavy as the full frame Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L lenses, but then the Panasonic is a vastly superior lens and adds:
    • weathersealing
    • much improved sharpness in order to match the MFT's higher pixel density and the effective 400mm field of view
    • much faster and more accurate AF - more sophisticated AF motor system with silent much faster AF in Live View / Video, and able to do face AF
    • optical image stabiliser and Dual IS when used with compatible Panasonic cameras
    • presumably less vignetting as the filter size is 77mm not 72mm
    • 9 rounded diaphragm blades instead of 8 non-rounded blades
    • nano lens coating
    • focus limiter switch
    • closer focusing to 1.15m instead of 1.5m
  • in essence, it functions in a similar role as the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens which gives the same DOF, and field of view on a full frame dSLR but you would need to use the dSLR at 2 stops higher iSO to make up for the loss of aperture, and compared to this lens, the Panasonic is:
    • 2.5x the price but you are getting the 1.4x TC thrown in
    • same weight but better weathersealing
    • more effective Dual IS (6.5EV on a compatible Panasonic body)
    • much shorter at 174mm compared with 257mm
    • less conspicuous black instead of white
    • nano coating
    • much improved sharpness in order to match the MFT's higher pixel density
    • faster, more accurate AF - more sophisticated AF motor system with silent much faster AF in Live View / Video, and able to do face AF
    • 9 rounded diaphragm blades instead of 8 non-rounded blades
    • much closer focusing to 1.15m instead of 3.5m
  • issue with AF on Olympus cameras - ensure you update the camera firmware however, with latest firmware of Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, this is fixed and the lens works in ProCapture mode, and the lens memory button works. The OIS gives sharp images down to 1/50th sec when using the 1.4x TC - but the Olympus 300mm f/4 can be used to 1/13th sec thanks to its Dual IS capability. The images with 1.4x TC are almost as sharp as the Olympus 300mm f/4.


  • 200mm f/2.8 (400mm full frame eq)
  • weathersealed
  • 77mm filter
  • tripod collar
  • lens hood
  • optical image stabiliser - 6.5EV Dual IS 2.0 with compatible Panasonic cameras (GH5, G9, G80/81/85)
  • 9 diaphragm blades
  • 15 elements in 13 groups including 2 ultra extra-low dispersion
  • Nano coating
  • focus limiter switch 3m to infinity
  • focus memory switch
  • close focus 1.15 m (45.28″) giving 0.2x macro
  • triple stepper motor 240fps
  • internal focus
  • micro-step drive system in the aperture control section helps the camera smoothly catch up to brightness changes when panning
  • 88 mm (3.46″) x 174 mm (6.85″)
  • 1245 g (2.74 lb)
  • $US2999 including bundled DMW-TC14 1.4x teleconverter (also compatible with DMW-TC20 Pan. 2x TC)


reviews combined with Panasonic 2x teleconverter

  • Panasonic DMW-TC20 2x teleconverter RRP $US599
    • only compatible with the Pan. 200mm f/2.8 lens at this stage
  • this gives 800mm f/5.6 OIS in full frame terms
  • some loss of sharpness as would be expected but very usable
    • AF is fast - 0.2secs infinity to close without OIS and 0.5sec with OIS
    • only 0.5EV vignetting wide open and very low distortion levels
    • best stopped down to f/8 to attain higher sharpness levels
    • gives slightly more lateral CA than the Pan. 100-400mm lens at 400mm

compared to full frame equivalents

  • a 400mm f/5.6 full frame lens will provide the same depth of field (DOF), field of view and similar low light performance (as FF sensor 2 stops higher ISO performance which counterbalances the 2 stops of aperture difference)
  • alternatively, a similarly sharp 200mm f/2.8 lens on a 80mp full frame camera cropped to a 2x crop will give the same image quality, DOF and FOV as the Panny on a 20mp MFT camera

Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L lens

  • the old Canon lens is NO MATCH for the Panasonic!
  • the Panasonic lens:
    • is sharper optically with less aberrations
    • is marginally lighter (Canon is 1.35kg)
    • is much shorter (Canon is 257mm long)
    • focuses much closer (Canon only focuses to 3.5m compared with 1.15m)
    • focus limiter more useful starting at 3.5m rather than 8.5m
    • is much better image stabilized - OIS and Dual IS (Canon has no OIS and no Canon dSLR nor the Canon R has IBIS)
    • has 9 rounded diaphragm blades (Canon has 8 straight blades)
    • has much better AF mechanism optimised for mirrorless systems

Sony FE mount

  • the only 400mm prime in Sony FE mount is the super expensive and heavy 400mm f/2.8

Sony FE 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 GM OSS lens

  • obviously has the added advantage of being a zoom lens
  • the Sony has even closer focus to 0.98m and the focus limiter starts at 3m
  • the Sony is similar size and weight as the Canon 400mm f/5.6L (see above) BUT it EXTENDS on zooming to the 400mm
  • the Sony's edges are soft at 400mm and need to shoot at f/11 while CA is worst at 400mm and there is 1.5% distortion at 400mm, but it is sharper than any of its full frame 100-400mm zoom peers

Canon R mount

  • must use the Canon EF lenses as no native lenses yet

Nikon Z mount

  • must use the Nikon F lenses as no native lenses yet

compared to APS-C equivalents

  • equates to a 250mm f/4 lens to give the same depth of field (DOF), field of view and low light high ISO performance, but no such lens exists for APS-C or FF formats
  • a 200mm f/2.8 with a 1.4x teleconverter would give 280mm f/4 but it would be much less sharp than the Panny

Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS lens

  • the 300mm gives a little more telephoto reach (480mm FF lens eq), weighs 1.3kg, 221mm long, close focus 1.5m, 8 straight blades, the OIS is only 2EV and is noisy, and focus limiter is from 3m
  • this lens could be used on a full frame camera in 1.3x crop mode to give similar field of view as the Panny but with slightly wider effective aperture and slightly shallower DOF, but would it be as sharp?
photo/pan200mm.txt · Last modified: 2019/06/29 15:16 by gary1

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