LensTip.com

Lens review

Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm f/2.8-4 ASPH.

25 June 2018
Arkadiusz Olech

10. Autofocus

After attaching the tested lens to the Panasonic GX9 the focusing mechanism is completely noiseless – you can’t even hear the whirr of moving elements. Its speed is also beyond reproach, running through the whole distance range and finding the focus takes about 0.4-0.5 of a second. It is a good result, especially if you take into account the fact that this lens boasts the shortest minimum focus value in this class of equipment. Still the focusing time is not always that short. When you decrease the AF field to the minimum and you take photos at the maximum focal length in worse lighting conditions and your object not properly contrasted the autofocus might miss the right position and find it only after the second or even the third try.

When you attach the Panaleica 50-200 mm to the Olympus E-M5 Mark II the performance of the autofocus unit doesn’t change a lot. The speed is very similar although the autofocus play happens a tad less often, usually when you set the focus from short distances to infinity. Then the mechanism can go in the wrong direction and return to the proper position only after a while.


Please Support Us

The coronavirus crisis has been adversely affecting many businesses and, sad but true, ours is not an exception. Despite that difficult situation we would like to preserve continuity and high quality of publications available on all our websites. Still, we are now aware it might be impossible without additional financial help. That's why we would like to ask all those who visit, read, and care about Optyczne.pl, LensTip.com i Allbinos.com for support - it's enough you send us a small sum of money via PayPal. If a lot people decide to support our websites we think we'll stand a chance and survive next months without any lasting harm. We count on your support and understanding, stay safe and be healthy.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - advertisement - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

In the case of studio shots, outdoor sample shots and during our week-long trip to Farroe Islands we didn’t have any reservations concerning the autofocus. We had some difficulties when the day was cloudy and I tried to photograph something not properly contrasted with the small autofocus point. In such a situation the mechanism got lost and played a bit but it happened once every ten-dozen shots. I admit it is a certain inconvenience but that fact is able to lower our autofocus assessment only a bit.

I think it’s also worth mentioning that Panasonic could have added a focus limiter in such an instrument as the tested lens. It is able to focus already from 0.75 of a meter and a limiter decreasing that to a range, say, from 2-3 meters to infinity would make the already good autofocus performance even better. There would be also less chances of misses and focus play.

The lens didn’t show any distinct front or back focus tendencies, no matter what camera it was attached to or what focal length we employed.

Panasonic DMC GX9, 100 mm, f/3.6
Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm f/2.8-4 ASPH. - Autofocus
Panasonic DMC GX9, 200 mm, f/4.0
Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm f/2.8-4 ASPH. - Autofocus
Olympus E-M5 II, 100 mm, f/3.6
Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm f/2.8-4 ASPH. - Autofocus
Olympus E-M5 II, 200 mm, f/4.0
Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200 mm f/2.8-4 ASPH. - Autofocus