Panasonic adds four lenses to its Lumix S L mount roadmap
Panasonic has released its August 2023 lens roadmap for the Pansonic Lumix S series interchangeable lenses for L mount cameras. While they are Panasonic lenses, they will of course work on Leica and Sigma cameras as well.
No specific focal lengths have been provided for the lenses, although the prime lens is quite obvious. The Zoom lenses give a reasonable enough range to make a good guess, too. We can also probably guess other specs, too.
100mm f/1.8 (f/1.4 is unlikely)
Of the four new lenses, there is one prime and three zoom lenses. The prime looks to be right on the 100mm mark. I would expect this would probably have an f/1.8 aperture to match up with the rest of the line it sits on.
I think many might have been hoping for a 100mm f/1.4 as a native L mount alternative to a Sigma 105mm f/1.4 Art (buy here) – which is available in L mount, but it’s still just a DSLR lens with a built-in adapter – or an adapted Nikon 105mm f/1.4E ED (buy here).
It is also possible that it is a 105mm f/1.4 Lumix S Pro lens, though. Obviously, adding the “Certified by Leica” text next to it would essentially confirm exactly what it is. Not adding it still leaves some potential ambiguity and manufacturers are rarely that forthcoming on lens roadmaps.
24-70mm f/4 or f/2.8 Macro OIS
Of the zooms, one is possibly another macro lens in the 28-70mm range. I suspect, given its position above the Lumix S 24-105mm F4 Macro OIS (buy here), that this might be a constant aperture f/2.8 macro lens.
Of course, it could just be above it in the list due to lack of space, and it’s also f/4. After all, a 28-70mm f/2.8 macro lens would potentially compete with sales of the Lumix S PRO 24-70mm f/2.8 (buy here). Whatever it is, I don’t expect it to be a variable aperture lens.
35-150mm walkabout lens
The other two zooms appear to be lower-end zooms. The first appears to have a focal length range of around 35-150mm. Given how low down this is on the list, I suspect it will have a fairly slow variable aperture.
This would potentially be a great walkaround lens for those who find something like a 24-105mm lens too wide on the short end and not long enough on the other. This would still let you get wide enough for things like street photography and most travel, but get close enough to really pick out the details.
100-500mm (probably) f/5.6-6.3
The other is a large-range super-telephoto zoom. It looks to have a focal length range of 100-500mm, so I definitely wouldn’t expect this to be quick. Perhaps in the f/5.6-6.3 range or so. Outdoors in brighter conditions, though, I expect it would perform quite well.
There have been a lot of new designs from various manufacturers when it comes to their lower-end super-telephoto prime and zoom lenses over the last couple of years. I’d be keen to see what this one will be like. Will it be similar to one of the existing redesigns that mirrorless and new lens tech affords us? Or will Panasonic present us with something new and interesting?
No news when
Panasonic hasn’t said when we’ll see any of these lenses. They are “in the schedule”, but that could mean anything from a few weeks to a few years.
If you’ve not bought into the L mount system yet and one of these lenses is starting to sway you over, do bear in mind how much time you’d be willing to wait for these lenses to come. Wait that amount of time before buying into the system.
Buying into a system because you expect lenses or accessories to come out within a few weeks and then they don’t come for a couple of years is not fun.
John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.