Panasonic Lumix G X Vario PZ 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH POWER OIS lens review by Lindsay Dobson

Cheap kit lenses need some review lovin' too, and Lindsay provides plenty of that. The pan(a)cake with the double vision was tested with a Olympus E-M5 camera:

"So why do I need another “kit lens” when I already have one? Good question. And the answer is convenience. Whilst the 12-50 can make a genuine addition to my casual (non-professional) kitbag thanks to its high degree of weather sealing and it’s genuinely useful macro capability, it is nevertheless a few inches long and when connected to a camera it isn’t pocketable. If I have the Panasonic Vario PZ 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH lens on my OMD instead, I immediately have what could reasonably be classified as a compact system, which will fit in a large coat pocket or in a make-up bag which can be placed inside my handbag. And this is the key thing about the 14-42 pancake zoom. I don’t know if it’s optically any better than any other variable aperture kit zoom (I

haven’t used many), but it is tiny and lightweight which makes it unique, and uniquely useful to have around.

It doesn’t come with a lens hood, as other Panasonic lenses do, instead it relies on special anti-flare coatings which work extremely well in my opinion – as you can see the images below were taken on a very sunny day and even shooting into the light didn’t cause flare. There is a downside however to not having a lens hood – a lens hood does offer a degree of protection to the lens’ front element should it be knocked or dropped, and in addition a lens hood helps to protect the glass from fingerprints. But where this lens is concerned a hood isn’t needed and the whole thing remains extremely small and abundantly portable. This is one of the things which makes the OMD so fantastic to own, on the one hand it’s a high-quality high performing professional work tool, then it doubles up as a high-quality personal use camera (given that all of the lenses are so much smaller and more portable than DSLR lenses) and lastly it’s actually a compact camera as well once the PZ 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 is attached.  How many compact cameras have a sensor this good, such a high level of customisation, awesome autofocus, a high continuous frame rate, the amazing tiltable rear screen with touch focus and touch shutter triggering, to name but a few of the OMD’s many terrific features."

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