Panasonic has a new standard zoom digital interchangeable lens, the Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 12-60 mm f/2.8-4.0 ASPH. / POWER O.I.S. (equivalent: 24-120 mm), the first lens in what the company says is the Leica DG Vario-Elmarit f/2.8-4.0 Series.
Designed for both stills and video, all of the lenses in this series feature a 9-blade diaphragm to give the aperture a rounded shape for an attractively smooth effect in out-of-focus areas when shooting at larger aperture settings. All lenses also use Panasonic’s Nano Surface Coating technology to minimize ghosts and flaring. They boast a rugged, dust/splash-proof design and are even freeze-proof to withstand professional use under harsh conditions.
The 12-60 mm lens comprises 14 elements in 12 groups, and features four aspherical lenses and two ED (Extra-low Dispersion) lenses to suppress spherical distortion or chromatic aberration.
The POWER O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) effectively compensates for blurring, says the company, making it easy to shoot even in dim lighting. The lens works with the Dual I.S. (Image Stabilizer), 5-axis Dual I.S., and 5-axis Dual I.S.2 systems when mounted on an applicable Lumix mirrorless cameras.
The linear motor enables the camera to comply with the sensor drive at 240 fps to take full advantage of cameras with high-speed, high-precision Contrast AF.
Notably, says Panasonic, the new lens excels in video recording performance. In addition to the silent operation achieved by the inner focus drive system, the micro-step drive system in the aperture control section helps the camera to smoothly catch up to brightness changes when zooming or panning. The optical design achieves exceptional barycentric stability to minimize image shifts during zooming. The AF tracking performance in zooming is also improved thanks to high-speed frame analysis for focus control.
Panasonic says the Leica DG Vario-Elmarit f/2.8-4.0 Series lineup will expand with additional lenses; an 8-18mm (16-36 mm equivalent) and 50-200 mm (100-400 mm equivalent) are presently under development.