Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 25mm f/1.4 ASPH
Lens Reviews - (Micro-)Four-Thirds

Review by Sebastian Milczanowski, published June 2012


There was a time where fast lenses were scarce in Micro-Four-Thirds land but things have changed quite a bit during the last 2 years. Among the first high-speed lenses was the Panasonic Leica Summilux 25mm f/1.4 ASPH which filled the "standard lens" gap in the system. Its maximum aperture of f/1.4 is certainly fast with respect to light gathering, but in terms of depth-of-field you are effectively "loosing" about two f-stops in this respect compared to the classic full format but this is still sufficient for quite shallow depth-of-field images especially for documentary photography. You should be able to find one for around 500EUR so it is far from being a budget item considering the typical prices for standard prime lenses in the DSLR market.

Objectively the build quality is fine thanks to very tight tolerances as well as good quality plastics, the metal mount and a smoothly operating focus control ring. However, with a length of around 55mm the lightweight lens is anything but compact but on the positive side the overall length remains constant throughout the focus range and the front element does not rotate.

The following figure shows the Panasonic Leica Summilux 25mm f/1.4 ASPH and the Panasonic LUMIX X VARIO PZ 14-42mm F/3.5-5.6 ASPH. POWER O.I.S. - just to give you an idea about the differences in size.

The AF performance of the lens is outstanding and the silent lens drive is well suited for movie shooting without annoying focusing noise.

Equiv. focal length50 mm (full format equivalent)
Equiv. aperturef/2.8 (full format equivalent, in terms of depth-of-field)
Optical construction9 elements in 7 groups (2 aspherical lenses, 1 Ultra High Refractive Index Lens)
Number of aperture blades7 diaphragm blades / Circular aperture diaphragm
min. focus distance0.3 m
Dimensions (L x W)54,5 x 63 mm
Weight200 g
Filter size46 mm (non-rotating)
Other featuresCase

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