Thread: Zoom Lenses for the BM Pocket Camera 4K

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  1. #1 Zoom Lenses for the BM Pocket Camera 4K 
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    When it comes down to good MFT zoom lenses for the new Pocket 4K, the options are some what limited, unless you go to expensive Cine Zooms, then the options are very nice from $3k to $30K. But what about less expensive MFT mount options for those of us without deep pockets. Share your experiences here and help others to decide what would be best for them.

    For a true Parfocal zoom lens in the MFT mount, the choices are quite limited. In fact there are only two zooms thst are truly parfocal, while several others come close.

    Panasonic Leica 12-60 f2.8-4 Zoom
    First on my list is the Panasonic Leica 12-60 f/2.8-4.0 Vario-Elmarit Zoom. It is light weight, extends somewhat when zoomed, but most MFT zooms do so. It is a zoom lens designed for video shooting, a true parfocal zoom, focus holds nicely throughout the zoom range. Iris control is stepless, giving a smooth iris change, not jumps or preset values found on all other MFT native lenses.

    Focus and Iris motors are deal quiet, so no added noise to camera mics. The on,y down side, is the variable max f/stop which is 2.8 at 12mm, but closes down as the focal length increases incrementally until it reaches f/4.0 at around 50-60mm.

    This zoom does have a great zoom range from a nice wide at 12mm to 60mm on the long end. Focus is by wire, but it has a nice feature of giving a long throw for precise focus when the ring is turned slowly, and shortes for a quick focus when turned quickly. This is my go to MFT Zoom for video work. Cost is $997.00 (B&H).

    Olympus 14-35 f/2.0 SWD Zoom
    Next is one of the greatest Four Thirds/MFT zooms ever made, the iconic Olympus 15-35 f/2.0 SWD Four Thirds Zoom (requires the Oly FT/MFT adapter for full auto use on a MFT camera). This lens has a truly wounderful cinematic look, it is a true parfocal also, so you can zoom in to 35mm, pull a nice manual focus with it’s full real manual focus ring control (which also switches for a useable auto-focus with a covert smooth and quiet focus motor, on the original Pocket and Micro cameras, not tested this one on the new Pocket 4K, but it should be better) then zoom back to the focal length you need. Focus control is precise and repeatable, allowing excellent focus pulls from one subject to the next.

    This lens also extends a little bit when zoomed, but not as much as the newer MFT zooms. Iris is in 1/3 steps, s d it keeps it f/2.0max setting at all focal lengths, no ramping down. Optically, the 14-35mm is constructed of 18 elements in 17 groups, including an ED and a single aspherical lens.

    The Zuiko accepts 77mm filters in its threaded mount, so not adapters required for a matte box nicker/nun or using pro filters and a lens shade type clamp on Matte boxes. Mlens disottiona Nd other flaws are minimal to non existent. No in camera correction needed for this one.

    On the down side This is a large lens, but not heavy, less than 2lbs, but it is well balanced, and should be a great lens on the new Pocket, if a traditional cinematic look is wanted. Price is $2,200 for a new one, and B&H has a used one listed at $975, and yiu will need the MFT adapter $150 used. I can do you one better, I have a Mint 14-35 f/2.0SWD Zoom with the Oly MFT adapter, focus gear (which can be moved to the zoom ring) custom case, all for $950. PM me for more info.

    There are other nice MFT zooms available, but these are not rue parfocal design. The Oly Pro zooms are nice, excellent optics, but a newer near clinical IQ look. All are focus by wire, but the Oly Pro has a nice manual clutch giving a more natural manual style feel,to the focus by wire. I will leave these to others to review that have used them.

    Panasonic has released a newer version of its old standby the 12-35 f/2.8 Zoom, a lot of Pocket Camera users started out with. This is an excellent intry level Zoom, with near parfocsl design that comes close, but not repeatable manual focus by wire. Again, those who have used this kens can add more info here.
    Cheers
    Last edited by Denny Smith; 11-06-2018 at 01:39 AM.
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  2. #2  
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    OK John Brawley has tested the Olympus 12-100 f/4.0 Zoom:
    Quote Originally Posted by John Brawley
    The Olympus 12-100 also has OIS and should be considered.

    I've used it with the P4K and it's a great range and very useful.

    It also has true manual focus, a real true mechanical focus ring (not focus by wire) as well as the option for MF by wire and AF.

    JB
    John, thanks for the info in this lens. Also the IS has been reported to work very well on the new Pocket 4K, much better than the Panny 12-35 Zoom. Olympus has once agin stepped up to thenp,atemwith anither winner. It would be interesting to see a IQ comparison between the 12-100 and the previous 14-35 zooms.
    Cheers
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  3. #3  
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    Olympus 12-40 is optically a great lens. I do not have Pocket4K, but it worked great on original Pocket and on GH4. Optically far better then Panasonic 12-35 V1- bought it and exchanged it for 12-40. Quite heavy for the size, but optically one of the best MFT zooms.
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    The upcoming Panasonic Leica 10-25 f/1.7 looks very nice (and expensive), but without in-camera correction on the P4K, I wonder how it will fare at such super wide angles.
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  5. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Rogoz View Post
    Olympus 12-40 is optically a great lens. I do not have Pocket4K, but it worked great on original Pocket and on GH4. Optically far better then Panasonic 12-35 V1- bought it and exchanged it for 12-40. Quite heavy for the size, but optically one of the best MFT zooms.
    I have that one and like it a lot on the P4K, too. Still, there's a lot of distrortion at the wide end, so one has to be careful while framing at 12 mm.
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  6. #6  
    I only did a few test with my Pocket 4k, but I really like the way my Sigma 18-35mm and 50-100mm perform with the Pocket and a Viltrox.
    Sure, they arenīt as organic and full of character like some other lenses (my rokinon video-primes for example), but I like those two a lot alrealy.
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  7. #7  
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    The Olympus 12-40mm, as I thought it would, is on one of ours pretty much all the time.
    Nice feature shooting HD (all of our deliverables) is how crop sensor mode makes for a relative 24-160mm for quick moving shoots.

    Sigma looks great too obviously and I prefer shooting it with a straight adapter at a relative 35-70mm.
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  8. #8  
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    Well, the Panasonic/Leica 12-60 has been tested on the BM Pocket 4K, and both touch focus and touch exposure settings work smoothly.
    Cheers
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  9. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimagine View Post
    The Olympus 12-40mm,.
    Nice feature shooting HD (all of our deliverables) is how crop sensor mode makes for a relative 24-160mm for quick moving shoots.
    .

    Focal length of lens does not change, what changes is FOV. 12mm is 12 mm regardless of the sensor it illuminates.
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  10. #10  
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    Yes - I'm pretty sure we all know this.

    It still gives one the ability to get the reach of a 160mm lens when one is in the field and may need to extend one's reach.

    It's an asset.
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