Panasonic 100-300 vs 45-200 (just got the 100-300)

Started Aug 7, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Panasonic 100-300 vs 45-200 (just got the 100-300)
Aug 7, 2012

Got the 100-300 yesterday and finally got some time to take pictures both this morning and at lunchtime.

The 100-300 is a little bigger and a little heavier, but it is not an issue for handling even on my E-PM1. I cradle the big lenses in my left hand anyway so it was stable.

I know the 45-200 is often rated as soft. I've definitely seen it in my pictures, while other times it's really sharp. I think I've figured it out. The 45-200 seems to get focus "close" and then give up and say it's good. It's almost like the DSLR lenses that would back focus or front focus. When it nails it, it's good. When it misses, its just slightly OOF and that makes the pictures soft. This is a good example! The feathers on his bottom are in focus, but not the eyes (which is where my focus box was).

The 100-300 doesn't do that. It's been jumping to focus pretty quickly most of the time, but a few times it hunts around until it gets it right. These are shot in RAW, but I don't have a RAW processor handy right now so they were just converted with Picasa. Colors and final rendering would be better with a proper raw processor.

This one is a 100% crop from 12 feet away:

And the moon was out this morning for my first shots of the day. Handheld at 300mm.

All photos here:

So I'm betting if Panasonic updated the firmware of the 45-200 to focus better, the lens would have a much better reputation. The 100-300 so far seems a LOT more consistent in focusing and therefore sharper. I'm glad I got it!

 Kevdog's gear list:Kevdog's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F4-5.6 OIS Panasonic 12-35mm F2.8 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS +2 more
Olympus PEN E-PM1
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