Mark Toal Shares His Top Seven7️⃣

Which Lens Should I Get For My Lumix?

Do you have a Lumix camera? (maybe you should, just saying).

There are many lens options for your camera.  Which one to get???  Professional photographer and good friend Mark Toal has taken the time to share his favorite G Series Panasonic Lumix lenses for the Micro Four Thirds mounts.  Don’t fret if you have a Lumix S Series full frame camera!  He hasn’t left you out!  He has included his favorite lens for the L mount also.  
Here’s a little info about Mark.  He lives in Portland Oregon and specializes in street photography, but also loves shooting portraits, landscapes and videos.  Mark takes his camera everywhere he goes. Because of this, he has captured hundreds of interesting shots while walking around Portland and other cities that he visits—including Fresno and Clovis.
Mark recently retired from Panasonic Lumix, but remains passionate about the brand.  He made this video just for Horn Photo.   In it, he reveals his seven go-to lenses fora variety of different styles of photography.    

Watch Mark’s video and read the blog to find out which lens is best for you.


1. Why is Mark’s camera so attached to this lens?

The Lumix 8-18mm f/2.8-4

Mark is starting right out of the gate with his FAVORITE lens.  It’s the Lumix 8-18mm lens.  This is the lens that Mark has on his camera when he leaves his house, and stays on his camera most of the time.  
As with all lenses for the Micro Four Thirds mounts, to get an idea of what kind of magnification it provides, you double the numbers.  So, this 8-18mm is equivalent to what a 16-36mm lens would produce on a full frame camera.
Back to the 8-18mm.  Mark likes the extreme depth of field it offers because he likes everything to be in focus.  However, it will provide a soft background when stopped down to f/4 or f/2.8.    

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2. What’s best for birds and wildlife?  

The Lumix 100-300mm f/4-5.6

Mark’s favorite telephoto zoom for catching nature in action is the Lumix 100-300mm f/4-5.6 lens. This is the perfect lens for people who love to photograph birds and other wildlife.  It is small and compact.  It has image stabilization, and is dust and splash resistant.  With the full frame equivalent of 200-600mm magnification, you can capture sharp  and detailed shots of animals in motion.  

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3. Is there a versatile lens for both nature and portraits?  

The Lumix 45-200mm f/4-5.6

The other telephoto zoom that Mark loves is the 45-200mm f/4-5.6lens.  With the equivalent of a 90-400mm lens on a full frame, a range of 90- 135mm is perfect for portrait photography.  This versatile lens is also good for nature photography, however, if your interest is mainly in portraiture and not birds, then this is the lens for you.  

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4.  What’s an affordable prime lens for low light street and landscape photography?  

The Lumix 25mmf/1.7

Mark’s has a recommendation for those who purchased a Lumix with a kit zoom lens, but want a fast (low aperture), and inexpensive lens they can use in low light.  It is the Lumix 25mm f/1.7.  This is a great first lens.   It is a “prime lens” meaning that it has a single focal length; not a zoom.   It is equivalent to a 50mm.  (50mm is about what the human eye’s natural field of view is.)   It is incredibly sharp and makes the perfect basic walk-around street photography lens.

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5. Who doesn’t love Leica?  Would YOU Leica  Leica?

The Leica 15mm f/1.7 - Excels in sharpness and contrast for the best street photography

This is the lens that Mark uses a lot for his street photography.  At 15mm, which is equivalent to a 30mm on a full frame, it’s a little wider than the lens mentioned in the previous section, but has the same f/1.7 aperture. The Leica is a more expensive lens, has a different feel, and excels in sharpness and contrast.  Mark loves this lens.  There’s something very special about a Leica lens.  Ask anyone who has one.

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6.  Can I have a lens that does it all?

The Lumix 14-140mm f/4-5.6 is a versatile compact lens at a good price that covers every subject

If you’re looking for one lens to do everything, Mark recommends the Lumix 14 to 140mm f/4-5.6 lens.  This is the equivalent to a 28 to 280mm on a full frame.  It’s versatile, extremely compact and inexpensive.  Perfect for travel, and for those who carry their cameras around with them everywhere.  This lens has image stabilization, and is dust and splash resistant.   Whether you like to shoot street photography or nature photography, the Lumix 14 to 140mm will meet your needs.

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7.  What about full-frame?  Here’s Mark’s lens pick for your Lumix S Series camera.  

The Lumix S20-60mm f/3.5-5.6 L Series Mount

Mark has more than one Lumix camera. He frequently uses his Lumix S5 full frame camera.  Mark loves the kit lens that is available with the Lumix S5 camera.  It’s the 20 to 60mm f/3.5-5.6 lens.  Because it’s for a full frame mount, it’s a true 20 to 60mm, unlike the previous six lenses for the micro four-thirds mounts.   Since Mark enjoys street photography, he appreciates the wide angle but also likes the ability to zoom in at 60mm and get a shallower depth of field for

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Thanks for reading!

Any questions or comments email He is our In-House Lumix Ace!
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