I try not to blog about equipment, but here’s a post about… equipment!
I’m using my micro 4/3rds camera a lot these days. It’s light, small, and has excellent image quality. I’ve got three prime lenses; a 14 mm wide-angle, a 20 mm f1.7, and a 60 mm portrait lens. With micro 4/3rds lenses the declared focal length needs to be multiplied by 2 to give the effective focal length. The 14mm is therefore a 28 mm and so on.
I have been feeling the lack of a longer reach lens. Although I have an adapter to fit my Nikon telephoto lenses they are only manual focus, so I decided to buy a native micro 4/3rds lens. After doing quite a bit research I recently bought a Lumix 45-150 mm lens. It’s the equivalent of a 90 mm to 300 mm lens, so has reasonable reach. Mostly importantly it has image stabilisation (IS), which reduces camera shake. My Panasonic camera body does not have IS built in.
The lens has a modest maximum aperture of f5.6 at its longest focal length of 150 mm, but, with a reasonable separation between the subject and the background, you can get a nicely blurred background. As shown with this image of a cosmos flower in the garden
It’s a pretty sharp lens, and there’s plenty of detail in this shot of our Japanese maple (Acer palmatum dissectum “Red Dragon”). I’ve added the vignnette! Even shooting on a dull day at around 1/60th of a second there’s no camera shake due to the IS system’s assistance. Normally I would try and shoot at the reciprocal of the focal length; in this case at least 1/150 of a second.
The longer reach allowed me to get this image. I was on a bridge over the Kennet and Avon Canal near Newbury and saw the wonderful reflections of the clouds and sun in the water. Without the new lens I would have been too far away. The movement of the water has produced some beautiful patterns.
I’m looking forward to shooting some portraits with the lens, so look out for another post.