Panasonic G X VARIO 12-35 mm f/2.8 ASPH. P.O.I.S
- small, solid and compact casing,
- excellent image quality in the frame centre,
- very good image quality on the edge of the frame,
- well corrected chromatic aberration,
- moderate coma,
- splendid, quick and silent autofocus,
- efficient image stabilization.
- high vignetting,
- huge distortion at the wide angle of view,
- weak performance against bright light.
Although we deal here with a lens which costs more than 4000 PLN our cons list includes actually several positions. How big is their influence on the overall rating? To tell you the truth just slight. The only slip-up which we didn’t expect and which we definitely didn’t like is the performance against bright light. We haven’t seen so intensive and light flares for a long time. Why boast of space-technology Nano surface coatings if in practice they perform very badly?
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High distortion at the wide angle is not a surprise – the optics of Micro 4/3 system is simply designed in that way. It is nothing we would praise because an optics specialist should still try to ‘wring’ the most of a given construction. On the other hand, after the correction of that aberration, you still get the declared angle of view and the distortion itself is much lower. The pixels are disappearing, though…
The vignetting is high, especially if you take into account the size of the detector. Still, if I was given a choice: that level of vignetting or a lower one but in a lens with bigger physical dimensions I would choose the first option. Let this lens’s vignetting stay on a level of 1.5-2.0 EV and let it keep its dimensions. Compared to full frame the benefit still remains huge because full frame 24-70 mm lenses can have the vignetting as high as 3 EV.
The results in other testing categories are mostly good or excellent. The image quality provided should be especially praised here – in the frame centre the Panasonic 12-35 mm can easily compete with good fixed focus lenses and it is noticeably better than “pancake” constructions. It also provides much more than any 14-42 mm kit lenses so it performs exactly as it is expected.