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M.Chapman

Anyone using the Panasonic LUMIX 14-140mm f/3.5-5.6, MkII?

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About 6 months ago I swapped from a Canon DSLR system to Panasonic Lumix G5 with 14-45 and 45-150 lenses to improve portability and have been delighted with the results and have had no problems with Alamy QC so far.

 

I'm now wondering if the Panasonic LUMIX 14-140mm f/3.5-5.6, Mk.II lens could improve portability further whilst still producing images that pass Alamy QC. The reviews show the 14-140mm lens IQ is not quite as good as the 14-45 and 45-150, but is it good enough?

 

I wouldn't normally have considered a "super-zoom" for Alamy work, but lens technology and the automated correction of lens distortion and CA by LR4 seems to have produced significant improvements.

 

Is anyone using this lens for Alamy shots?

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman

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Have you read this review? http://slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1611/cat/69

 

Evidently there's a motion blur problem at some slow shutter speeds with some µ3/4 bodies due to the first shutter curtain causing vibrations. Don't know if the G5 has an electronic first curtain mode, but using it seems to fix the problem.

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I will be interested to see any replies you get about experience with this lens.   I bought the original 14-140 thinking it would be a good all-in-one solution.   I soon sold it as I was unhappy with the IQ at the long end.  It was OK from 14-100 but for 100-140 it was soft.  I never had any QC failures from it, but there were plenty of images that I  did not submit because I thought they were not good enough.

 

I now cover the long end with an Olympus 40-150, which is tack sharp throughout it's range..

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Have you read this review? http://slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1611/cat/69

 

Evidently there's a motion blur problem at some slow shutter speeds with some µ3/4 bodies due to the first shutter curtain causing vibrations. Don't know if the G5 has an electronic first curtain mode, but using it seems to fix the problem.

Yes I'd seen that review. I tend to use fully electronic shutter on my G5. (The mechanical shutter makes an awful clatter). However using the electronic shutter can create geometric distortion. Although each pixel is only "exposed" for the designated time, I believe it takes something like 1/10th sec to read out the complete image. So if the camera or subject aren't still there can be some geometric distortion introduced. Not usually noticeable, but if I compare a burst of successive handheld shots, I can spot the variation.

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I will be interested to see any replies you get about experience with this lens.   I bought the original 14-140 thinking it would be a good all-in-one solution.   I soon sold it as I was unhappy with the IQ at the long end.  It was OK from 14-100 but for 100-140 it was soft.  I never had any QC failures from it, but there were plenty of images that I  did not submit because I thought they were not good enough.

 

I now cover the long end with an Olympus 40-150, which is tack sharp throughout it's range..

I should have an opportunity to evaluate one of these lenses (Lumix 14-140mm Mk II ) shortly. I'll let you know how I get on.

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Just took a quick dance through your collection, Mark. Nice pictures. I have one observation and a guess. You don't shoot birds or other wildlife. Yes, you have a couple of birds, but you're not a dedicated bird photographer. My guess . . . is that you almost always use a tripod. 

 

So why do you need the long end of the 14-140? This zoom is a very clever design; it's relatively small, not bulky, and weighs under a pound. But it's very slow and seems to have problems on the long end. I think you would be paying for that extra reach but you will not be getting value for money.

 

I see an adjustment that many shooters are now making who had moved from DSLRs to smaller cameras in the past two years (I'm one).  We now seem to be moving halfway back towards the DSLR. I just bought a Sony RX10, so I am guilty of this. Well, there's no guilt; I've been waiting for Sony to come out with some great lenses but they've been dragging their feet on this. I for one do not see the point in having a small, light camera with a big lens on the front. We loose our stealth. 

 

I have been shooting with a couple of primes (mostly the 24 f1.8) for the past two years. Mark, you could have done that from the look of most of your frames. 

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Thanks for your comments. Although many of my current Alamy pictures aren't taken at the long end of the zoom range, this is because I rarely carried a long lens with my Canon 550D. I have taken lots of wildlife photos when I was younger and carried much more gear, but they're with old film SLR and wouldn't meet QC, so I haven't uploaded.

 

Since having the Lumix 45-150 lens I've started using long zoom shots quite a bit more. I tend to use the long end to pick out architectural details that I can't get close to, but will try some more wildlife shots, although the competition on Alamy etc. is very stiff in that area.

 

I very rarely use a tripod, but often use a monopod / walking pole.

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I will be interested to see any replies you get about experience with this lens. I bought the original 14-140 thinking it would be a good all-in-one solution. I soon sold it as I was unhappy with the IQ at the long end. It was OK from 14-100 but for 100-140 it was soft. I never had any QC failures from it, but there were plenty of images that I did not submit because I thought they were not good enough.

 

I now cover the long end with an Olympus 40-150, which is tack sharp throughout it's range..

I should have an opportunity to evaluate one of these lenses (Lumix 14-140mm Mk II ) shortly. I'll let you know how I get on.

 

A while back I said I'd get an opportunity to try one of these lenses (Lumix 140-140mm MkII) and would let you know how I got on.

 

I've been delighted with it and have been using it ever since and have taken several hundred images. I've recently submitted 10 batches of images to Alamy with no QC problems and feel that it's perfectly capable of producing images that will pass Alamy QC at all focal lengths (subject to the caveats below). I've included the keyword Lumix14140 in a selection of the images I've uploaded if you want to take a look.

 

Caveats.

  • I'm using the Lumix 14140 on a Lumix G5 body with the electronic shutter turned on (to avoid vibration) and OIS image stabilisation is ON.
  • This camera and lens combination writes automatic distortion and CA removal parameters into the RAW file at the time of shooting depending on the focal length in use.
  • If distortion correction isn't applied the lens shows excessive barrel distortion at the 14mm end
  • I'm processing in Lightroom 4 which automatically applies distortion and CA corrections as specified in the RAW file
  • I almost always shoot handheld at ISO 160 at F8-F11
  • LR applies a default level of sharpening and noise reduction during raw conversion
  • Very occasionally I've had to apply defringing to remove purple fringes from strong backlit edges at the corner of the frame.
  • The lens does show some corner softness probably due to some field curvature and the distortion correction, but it's not been a major issue. I have turned off distortion correction a couple of times (EXIFTOOL) and it improved matters.
  • I always downsize from 4616x3464 to 3400x2550 using bicubic resampling to be sure to avoid SoLD. I probably don't need to, but it's been part of my workflow for ages.

It's now my default lens.

 

Hope that's helpful.

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman

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Have you read this review? http://slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1611/cat/69

 

Evidently there's a motion blur problem at some slow shutter speeds with some µ3/4 bodies due to the first shutter curtain causing vibrations. Don't know if the G5 has an electronic first curtain mode, but using it seems to fix the problem.

Yes I'd seen that review. I tend to use fully electronic shutter on my G5. (The mechanical shutter makes an awful clatter). However using the electronic shutter can create geometric distortion. Although each pixel is only "exposed" for the designated time, I believe it takes something like 1/10th sec to read out the complete image. So if the camera or subject aren't still there can be some geometric distortion introduced. Not usually noticeable, but if I compare a burst of successive handheld shots, I can spot the variation.

 

I've been keen on Panasonic MFT  for travel since 2009 and worked my way through GF-1 GX-1 and now the Lumix GF-7 which  [i think] has a similar shutter to the G5. I have played with the 100-300 with OIS on and off [it switches off the sensor stabilisation whatever] .Though I realise it's not the lens you refer to I have had spectacular distortion on moving subjects on and off a tripod and most focal lengths which would cover your 140mm.

 

I believe this is "rolling shutter "when using silent mode and hence the electronic shutter "exposes line by line" while the subject and back ground is in motion.  The earlier shutters were all mechanical and sounded like a bag of hammers. I have not had time to do a controlled series of tests but I think we have a purely electronic shutter in the GX-7 at least not a focal plane mechanical jobby like I thought and the spec sheet implies. I haven't heard of Olympus bodies having this issue but I cannot stand their menu systems. I'll have a look at that review.

I hope this brief synopsis makes some sense

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I believe this is "rolling shutter "when using silent mode and hence the electronic shutter "exposes line by line" while the subject and back ground is in motion.  The earlier shutters were all mechanical and sounded like a bag of hammers. I have not had time to do a controlled series of tests but I think we have a purely electronic shutter in the GX-7 at least not a focal plane mechanical jobby like I thought and the spec sheet implies. I haven't heard of Olympus bodies having this issue but I cannot stand their menu systems. I'll have a look at that review.

I hope this brief synopsis makes some sense

 

 

Yes the rolling shutter effect can produce some weird distortions. It takes about 1/10th for the line by line readout of a complete image from the sensor. Most of the time I find it's barely noticeable with static subjects, unless I compare 2 adjacent frames of the same subject taken handheld at the long end of the zoom. It's easy to avoid by bracing the camera against something or using the mechanical shutter, but I find that makes an awful "clatter" on the Lumix G5 body.

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The  "default" for the Panasonic MFT bodies I've had is the mechanical shutter being open so it has to close before openinig again for the image, hence the clatter.

I have now been close to actually having to read the manual but had missed the option for mechanical shutter being greyed out when in "silent mode" so am now reverting to the mechanical shutter in the hopes that all will be well. If not I'll report back !

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