Christopher Bowyer Asks About Sharpness of Leica 12-60mm

Posted May. 27th, 2017 by Daniel J. Cox

Dear Daniel,

I hope you don’t mind me contacting you to ask for your advice please.

I’m longtime Nikon DSLR photographer but am intending to switch to mirrorless, mainly for more accurate AF and smaller/lighter equipment. To this end, after much reading of reviews etc, I recently purchased a Panasonic G80 & Panasonic Leica 12-60mm f/2.8-4 lens.

When this arrived I unpacked it, set the camera up and did quick test taking some photos of a brick wall from square on to check the camera & lens worked fine. It was pretty fine at most focal lengths, but unfortunately, the lens was very soft in the bottom LH corner at 60mm, as can be seen in the screenshot here

I reported this to the camera shop who were very apologetic and asked me to send the lens back for a replacement. I did, and the replacement arrived a few days later.

I unpacked the replacement lens and tested it, it was fine at 60mm (phew!) but had very soft bottom RH corner at 50mm, shown in this screenshot

I’ve contacted the camera shop about the second lens, but haven’t had a reply yet.

With your experience with Panasonic cameras & lenses, do you have any advice for what to do next, please?

I mean, I really like the Panasonic G80 camera body, I much prefer it to my Nikon D7200. But I’ve never had such a problem as this when buying Nikon lenses in the past! Is it usual to have to try several copies of a Panasonic lens to find one that is all right?

It did cross my mind that it might be my G80 camera body that was at fault, but it works fine with a friend’s PanaLeica 25mm f/1.4 lens, and wasn’t too bad with the 12-60mm lenses except at the 50/60mm focal lengths. So it doesn’t seem to me that it is the camera that is at fault?

I’ve uploaded some full-res photos here if you would like to look at them in greater detail.

Any help or advice you are able to offer would be most gratefully appreciated. I’m keen to make the switch from Nikon to Panasonic, but need to sort out this issue with the lens first!

Kind regards,


Christopher, Sorry for the late reply. Have been on the road extensively and having one heck of a time keeping up with all the Blog produces.

I’m sorry to hear you’re having issues with this lens. I tried downloading the image you sent a link to but see tha the link has expired. I would be happy to check those out if you have a new, current link. Were you ablet to reslove this issue by any chance. If not, are you in the US? If so we can possibly get you intouch with the right people to check this all out. Let me know when you can and please accept my aplogy for taking so long to respond.


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