Conjoining a GH5 camera body with a Contax/Yashica Zeiss 50mm f1.7 lens and then throwing caution to the wind and shooting mostly at f2.0 and f2.8.

It's fun to mix and match. I've been playing around with the Panasonic GH5 cameras for a week or so and have found the Olympus Pro series lenses I bought to be amazingly sharp. Same with the Panasonic 8-18mm lens, but I felt the need to fill in with some speed in the portrait/short tele area of my lens kit for these cameras. Having already dropped kilo dollars on the basics for the system I was reticent to drop more cash on something stop gap (saving up for the Nocticron...) so I rummaged around in one of the equipment drawers and found my Zeiss 50. I just happened to have an adapter to mount it onto m4:3rds cameras and in moments we were all hooked up and on our way. 

Early on I decided that I'd like to try shooting the lens close to its maximum aperture because that's where I thought I'd get the most use out of it on real shoots --- as the lens to grab when I need an extra stop of light, or a little less depth of field, when shooting available light. I pretty much stuck to f2.0 and f2.8 and enabled the GH5's automatic shutter selection. This would allow the camera to switch to the high speed, electronic shutter when the light levels maxed out the mechanical shutter's 1/8,000th. 

Most of the sunlit shots sent the camera into electronic shutter territory. The one just below, shot at f2.0 required 1/32,000th of a second exposure. I hardly worried about subject movement with this shot.... But what I was interested to see was the lens performance on a sensor much smaller than the original 35mm frame for which this lens was originally designed. 

I was pleased....

The camera and lens handled each other beautifully. 


  1. I have a an M Leica 50mm Summicron that functions well on my G85. My Nikkor AI version of 50mm f1.4 may not be as contrasty as your Zeiss but takes pleasing photos.

  2. "The one just below, shot at f2.0 required 1/32,000th of a second exposure. I hardly worried about subject movement with this shot.... "

    Hi Kirk
    Actually you should (worry), because the electronic shutter's time can give you an idea of how much light gets on the sensor but not for how long it keeps coming. You can easily have motion blur with fast electronic speeds.
    Kind regards

  3. Nice lens, and nice light as well in the last shot. And wow, you had Donald Fagen there - still can't get over Walter Becker's death on last Sunday. May he R.I.P., or maybe he's having fun with others who went before him...

  4. It's not just subject movement that can defeat the electronic shutter. I have had a couple of off results with electronic shutter when I wasn't quite steady, and got some image distortion due to the camera moving during the exposure. Took me a couple minutes to figure it out...
    Fast global shutter will eventually out an end to that.

  5. Many older lenses perform really well on micro 4/3 and APS cameras. I often use a 1949-vintage Leica 50mm f/2.0 Summitar lens on a Fuji. At f/2 or 2.8, it has funny swirly aberrations around the edges of the frame while the center is sharp - rather interesting and pleasing overall. But by f/4 or f/5.6, the lens is crisp and essentially distortion-free. I have found that many Leica-M and Olympus OM lenses do well on APS, too.


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