Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-42 mm F 3,5-5,6 ASPH. MEGA O.I.S.
Lens Reviews - (Micro-)Four-Thirds
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Review by Sebastian Milczanowski, published June 2011


The Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH MEGA O.I.S. is yet another Panasonic standard kit zoom lens for the micro-4/3 system. The lens offers very similar specifications like the Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm f/3.5-4.5 ASPH O.I.S. except for the 3mm shorter focal length, the 4mm longer lens body and a plastic mount. Not to mention the lower price of around 80€.

Objectively the build quality is fine thanks to very tight tolerances as well as good quality plastics. Furthermore, the zoom and focus control rings operates smoothly. The lens extends when zooming towards the long end of the zoom range but there's no wobbling of the inner lens tube. The front-element does not rotate thanks to an internal focusing design.
Unfortunately, the lens lacks a metal mount and the overall length is not really compact in comparison to the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 ED which has the same focal length but a 20mm shorter length in its retracted state.

The following image shows a comparison between the Panasonic Lumix G 20mm f/1.7 ASPH, the Panasonic Lumix G 14mm f/2.5 ASPH and the Panasonic Lumix G VARIO 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH Mega O.I.S.

Typical for most micro 4/3 lenses the focus ring is operated "by wire" so you drive the AF motor by turning the focus ring (unlike the conventional mechanical coupling). The AF speed is very high and typical for contrast-AF-based systems the accuracy is spot on.

Equiv. focal length28-84 mm (full format equivalent)
Equiv. aperturef/7-f/11.2 (full format equivalent, in terms of depth-of-field)
Optical construction12 elements in 9 groups (1 Aspherical lens)
Number of aperture blades7 (circular)
min. focus distance0.3 m (max. magnification ratio 1:6.25)
Dimensions (L x W)63.6 x 60.6 mm
Weight165 g
Filter size52 mm (non-rotating)
Other features-

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