42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
Lens Is Hopelessly Blurry at 42mm,
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3XK 12.1 MP Micro Four Thirds Compact System Camera with 3-Inch Touch-Screen LCD and LUMIX G X Vario PZ 14-42mm/F3.5-5.6 Lens (Electronics)
First off, I want to say that I own a GF3 and I love it. I ordered this kit to get the new 14-42 X collapsible zoom lens, and was unfortunately extremely disappointed. At 42mm the lens is hopelessly blurry when the shutter speed is set between 1/80th and 1/250th, especially when focused near infinity. The pictures are extremely soft, and in high contrast areas you can see a distinct double image. This is a problem that has been reported by numerous users on online camera forums, and so far Panasonic has made no effort to correct it. Most people believe it is due to the OIS stabilization system overcompensating for vibrations caused by the camera's shutter. The quality of the pictures resulting from this problem is worse than the quality of pictures from my camera phone!
I'd like to add (perhaps to give some credibility) that I have been using Micro 4/3rds cameras since the GH1 came out a couple years ago, and I can take sharp handheld pictures using the regular 14-42 lens at similar focal length/shutter speed settings. I can even take sharp pictures using the unstabilized Olympus 45mm prime lens at the same shutter speeds, so the problem with the 14-42 X lens is definitely not that I can't hold the camera stable enough. There is a major problem with this lens that Panasonic needs to address. (For more information and sample photos, do a search for 14-42 X blurry at your favorite search engine.)
I also want to mention that the firmware update released by Panasonic on November 17, 2011 does not resolve this issue. I tested it by taking before/after shots, and saw no improvement whatsoever.
I myself returned the camera/lens kit to Amazon for a replacement, but the replacement exhibited the same problem. I may hold onto the replacement for another week or so to see if Panasonic releases any further firmware updates to address this, but if not, this will be going back for a refund.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 17, 2011 5:02:03 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 24, 2012 6:48:26 PM PST
Thanks for your review. As of 12/17/2011, the recommended work around for the problem with the 14-42 X lens is to disable image stabilization (IS) when shutter speeds are above 1/60. Granted it's a bit of a PITA, but IS only provides benefits when hand held at lower shutter speeds. Do you get blurry images at 42mm with IS turned off?
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 24, 2012 6:46:56 PM PST
Mitchell Underwood says:
Noirist- Just saw your comment now. Thanks for the suggestion. I did think that I may be able to circumvent the problem by turning the OIS off, but decided that if that was the only solution then I'd rather not bother with the lens. There are enough situations that come up where shutter speeds go back and forth between the region where OIS is needed and where it isn't. If it's necessary to toggle the OIS on and off in situations like that, I'd rather just deal with the slight extra bulk of the regular 14-42. If Panasonic releases a fix for the OIS, I'll be the first person to buy another copy. Until then though, I can't justify spending so much money on a product that doesn't work properly.
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 24, 2012 6:50:21 PM PST
I don't blame you... This past week there have been a flurry of reviews for the GX1 with the 14-42 X Lens and none has mentioned the blurriness problem. Maybe it's fixed? Or maybe the reviewer tests aren't very thorough in their rush to publish first?
Posted on Apr 11, 2012 4:30:14 PM PDT
Lili J. Mcgovern says:
Is there a camera you would recommend that is similar in features and price?
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