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Panasonic LUMIX G / GF / GH / GX Series
4K and AVCHD on a Micro Four Thirds system camera with interchangeable lenses.


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Old July 3rd, 2011, 12:20 AM   #1
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New Panasonic GH1 user

Hi, Everyone

I did photography 20 years ago on SLRs. Now...I'm back doing video with HDSLRs. I just got a GH1 camera. What is good starter 50 mm lens with this camera? What adapter do I need? I was thinking of buying a Canon f1.4 50mm FD lens.

Right now, I'm confused with all the tech terms and all I want is to get started.

If the Canon 50mm lens is a horrible choice, what brand of adapter and lens should I use? All I want to do is get started with the camera.

I come from the video world so be gentle in responses while I learn from you.

Thanks in advance!
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Old July 3rd, 2011, 03:10 AM   #2
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

If you are thinking in 35mm full frame SLR terms then you don't want a 50mm lens. The GH1 has a Micro Four Thirds sensor which is quite a bit smaller than a full frame & this gives an effective 2X crop factor. This means that a 50mm lens gives the filed of view of a 100mm. The best value lens around the 'normal' field of view is the Panasonic 20mm F/1.7 which is effectively a 40mm lens with decent low light performance. The luxury lens choice in this range is the Voigtlander 25mm F/0.95 (AFAIK the only sub F/1.0 lens made for any camera) which is an effective 50mm & obviously has amazing capabilities in low light. It is a totally manual lens unlike the Panasonic that 'talks' to the camera & has the usual automatic functions like AF & the aperture is controlled by the camera (there is no aperture ring).
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Old July 3rd, 2011, 07:02 PM   #3
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

The Voigtlander is my main lens, it's amazing. You could also check out the Canon FD 24mm f/1.4 Canon FD 24mm f/1.4 L
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Old July 4th, 2011, 12:01 AM   #4
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

I second Nigel's recommendation for the Panasonic 20mm F/1.7. The Canon 50mm F/1.4 is too long for normal use, but is a fine lens.

The very best choice, if you could wait, would be what appears to an excllent value lens: the upcoming new Leica for $599:
Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 25 mm f/1.4 ASPH Micro 4/3 H-X025


The Canon FD 24mm F/1.4 is usually found for $1200 or more and the Voightlander is being sold at hundreds over it's retail cost. The Panasonic is made to work with the camera, is F/1.7 and is only $399. It is an excellent starter lens, and suitable for event work.

Patrick's ideas are great, of course, but the Leica would be a better choice than the Canon, same F/stop and half the price, but that is just my uninformed opinion. I don't know of anyone who has actually seen or used the Leica, but I can't imagine it would be less than fantastic for the cost.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 07:18 AM   #5
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

The main reason I don't like the 20mm f/1.7 is because it's too small (focus ring too close to body) to use with the follow focus on my shoulder rig. Having auto focus is nice, however. The 25mm f/1.4 does seem to be the best of both worlds, provided the lens quality is great.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 10:07 AM   #6
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

Jaime,

If you don't want to wait until the $599 micro 4/3 Panasonic 25/1.4 is available, you can get a http://www.amazon.com/Sigma-Olympus-Panasonic-Digital-Cameras/dp/B000FBFXY2 and a "http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-DMW-MA1-Mount-Adapter/dp/B001ISKNKK.

Here's what Philip Bloom was able to do with the GH1 and a Sigma 30mm:

http://philipbloom.net/2009/08/11/li...track-compact/

I am looking seriously at this lens for my GH1/GH2. I am tired of not having an autofocus option on my manual lenses (a Konica 40/1.8 and a Canon FD 50/1.8), and I don't want the 20/1.7 because of the diminutive size of its manual focus ring.

Welcome to the world of Panasonic GH filmmaking!

Hope this is helpful,

Bill
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Last edited by Bill Bruner; July 4th, 2011 at 10:59 AM.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 11:18 AM   #7
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

The 30mm F/1.4 is a decent lens, but the auto focus does not work with the GH1, I'm afraid, only the GH2.

If anyone knows how to fix that, let me know. My GH1s (3 of them) have the latest firmware, cause they were all bought new within the last few months.

This is an advantage of the GH2 over the GH1, the Sigma 30mm and 18-50 autofocus works on the newer cams, not the older, at least that has been my experience.
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Old July 4th, 2011, 01:33 PM   #8
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

Thanks for the caution, Jeff. Sounds like it would be useless for Jaime.

Guess I'll have to wait for the Panasonic with everyone else!

Cheers,

Bill
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Old July 6th, 2011, 11:14 PM   #9
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Re: New Panasonic GH1 user

Thanks everyone on help of how to speak a little bit of the DSLR language.. I appreciate it.
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Last edited by Jaime Espiritu; July 6th, 2011 at 11:15 PM. Reason: add more words to clarify
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