Gear August 22, 2017

Panasonic 15mm f1.7: A wide & fast MFT lens that can pull it’s weight in low light

Panasonic 15mm f1.7

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If you shoot with a micro four thirds camera, you’re no stranger to crop factor. You sacrifice a big, beefy full frame sensor camera for the conveniently small and sleek design of a MFT. Sure, it’s nice to be able to quickly stow your camera on a crowded airplane or when the weather takes a turn for the worst. But if you’re a minimalist traveller like myself, it’s absolutely necessary. Other than the kit lens that generally comes with the camera (usually with a max aperture of  f3.5), our tiny MFT sensors don’t leave us many options for grabbing that wide shot in a low light situation.

This is where the Panasonic 15mm f1.7 steps in, the Panasonic micro four thirds lenses equivalent to 30mm on a full frame rig. Here is a low light test video I shot with my Panasonic G7 and the Panasonic 15mm f1.7 at the night market in our current hood, Chiang Mai, Thailand:

Now this is not a full review of this lens. I haven’t used it long enough to write up a true and accurate account of it’s capabilities. But what I can tell you is that the Panasonic 15mm f1.7 is a BEAST in low light, especially at this price point.


I managed to capture all of those low light shots between 400 – 1600 ISO on my Panasonic G7. Even at the higher end of the ISO spectrum the image noise was very minimal, if even at all noticeable. The stills I took were sharp as a tack, and had virtually zero chromatic aberration even in the most high contrast areas.

It’s small size, yet huge versatility has earned the Panasonic 15mm f1.7 a special place in my camera bag, no matter what the occasion.



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