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3x telephoto zoom lenses for Micro Four Thirds


  • if you have an Olympus camera, go for the Olympus 40-150mm f/2.8
  • if you have a Panasonic camera, go for a Panasonic lens as it has OIS which will be needed in such a telephoto lens

Panasonic 50-200mm f/2.8-4.0 OIS

Olympus mZD 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro

OM System 40-150mm f/4 Pro

Panasonic 35-100mm f/2.8 OIS X

Panasonic X PZ 45-175mm f/4-5.6 ASPH. POWER O.I.S HD

  • 90-350mm in 35mm terms
  • HD = fast, silent AF for videos
  • POWER OIS = 2-3EV optical image stabiliser
  • PZ = Power Zoom = electric zoom lever for smooth zooming during videos
  • NANO surface coating for less flare
  • 14 elements in 10 groups (2 aspherical lenses, 2 ED lenses)
  • Multi-Actuator Floating Inner Focus System
  • constant physical length across the zoom range
  • 7 rounded blades
  • 46mm non-rotating filter thread
  • closes focus 0.9m
  • 61.6mm x 90mm long
  • 210g
  • $399
    • maximum distortion uncorrected is 1.6% pincushion at 90mm but distortions are well corrected in-camera
    • 1.1EV vignetting wide open at 45mm much less at all other settings
    • good to very good and consistent sharpness across all focal lengths although worst results wide open are for 120mm at the edges
    • minimal CA at 45mm but rises to peak at 1.7px at 80mm, but these are well corrected in-camera
    • “a good albeit not superb telephoto zoom lens as some might have hoped from its “X” designation”
    • annoyingly, the lens resets itself to widest setting each time the camera is switched off

Olympus m.ZD 40-150mm f/4-5.6R

  • updated version with faster AF for MSC designation (HD video) and compatibility with the lens adapters
  • $299
    • mod. CA at 40mm but minimal CA at longer focal lengths
    • soft corners wide open at 150mm - best at f/8
    • not bad for a consumer grade lens

Olympus m.ZD 40-150mm f/4-5.6

  • 80-300mm in 35mm terms
  • closest focus 0.9m
  • 13 elements in 10 groups
  • 58mm non-rotating filter
  • internal focusing
  • 63.5 x 83mm
  • 190g
  • $299
    • soft edges at 40mm but excellent sharpness at 70mm and very good to excellent at 150mm
    • CA well controlled at max. 0.75px
    • vignetting well controlled at 0.8EV peak at 150mm
    • “excellent value for money”
    • “nice bokeh” for a zoom lens

Panasonic 45-150mm f/4-5.6 ASPH OIS

  • introduced in July 2012 as a more compact option than the 45-200mm and presumably faster AF, and it is the shortest lens in this group
  • 90-300mm in 35mm terms
  • Mega OIS optical image stabiliser
  • stepping motor makes focusing action smooth and silent for use in both video and photo recording
  • 12 elements in 9 groups inc. 1x UHR and 2x ASPH elements
  • 7 rounded blades
  • 52mm non-rotating filter
  • closest focus 0.90m giving 0.17x macro
  • 62x73mm
  • 380g
  • $270?
    • nice compact zoom lens, a little soft at 150mm

Panasonic 45-200mm f/4-5.6 OIS

  • version ii announced in Jan 2017 offers better weathersealing, and smoother aperture variance when zooming
  • both lenses can support Dual Sync IS (version I needs firmware upgrade)
  • 90-400mm in 35mm terms
  • Mega OIS (2-3EV) optical image stabiliser
  • very good build quality
  • 16 elements in 13 groups inc. 3x ED elements
  • 7 rounded blades
  • 52mm non-rotating filter
  • closest focus 1m giving 0.2x macro
  • 70x100mm
  • 380g
  • $270
    • very well corrected distortions with maximum of only 1% without in-camera corrections
    • moderate vignetting (1EV) wide open
    • very good across the field sharpness which is quite consistent for all focal lengths although a slight drop in the longer focal length range
    • interestingly at 150mm, MTF50 sharpness does beat the Lumix 14-140mm lens at 140mm but not by as much as one would expect
    • moderate CA at 2px maximum but this is largely corrected in-camera
    • bokeh quality can be a bit “rough”
    • overall a solid performance
photo/mft40-150mm.txt · Last modified: 2022/02/15 20:26 by gary1

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