The Yawning Gap in M4/3 Lens Lineup

Started Jul 12, 2013 | Discussions thread
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gary payne
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The Yawning Gap in M4/3 Lens Lineup
Jul 12, 2013

As a frequent traveler I'm a big fan of M4/3, I've carried at least two of the 4 Pana bodies I own across dozens of countries from Suriname to Somalia.  It's the goldilocks of formats, large enough for excellent quality, small enough to haul around with just carry-on luggage.  I gave my Canon 5D to my son without remorse.

And I have patiently waited for a decent telephoto prime lens that would complete the basic lens set that any format must have to be taken seriously by professionals.  When I bought the G1 I knew it would take some time to develop a new format's selection of lenses.

But this format isn't new anymore.  We have a virtual herd of M4/3 kit lenses, we have super wides and lens caps, macros, some excellent short to middle range primes.  But we have only two or three mediocre zooms that can take an "OK" picture at 300mm if we get a lucky shot or process it enough.  These zooms may satisfy some consumers who have graduated from P&S.  But, as Photozone's analysis indicates, there is substantial softness at 300mm.  And let's all admit that there is significant focus inaccuracy or hunting in low light at f5.6

The M4/3 sensors and the bodies have achieved serious pro quality and deserve at least a decent prime around the 300mm length for all of us that have long wanted to use this format for serious wildlife or sport photography and those of us who have grown into it and want to keep growing with it.

The irony is that M4/3's keen advantage over the traditional full frame and standard aps-c rises as the lens length increases - as anyone who have ever backpacked a 400mm to 600mm lens Canon/Nikon/Sigma uphill into the wilds can tell you.  From a marketing perspecitive, it's just crazy that neither Oly nor Pana has recognized how important a decent prime tele is to their unique format.  Adding a M4/3 300mm f4 prime to the lineup would trigger a substantial shift (especially of aging baby-boomer wannabe pro shooters) into M4/3.  It would certainly keep me in M4/3.

But I have to say, I'm getting impatient, starting to look elsewhere.  I need at least a rumor of a long prime, and I need it very soon.  Anybody else?   gp

Canon EOS 5D Panasonic Lumix DMC-F5
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