L-mount lens roadmap: Panasonic promises 42 lenses by the end of 2020

First three Panasonic lenses on the L-mount lens roadmap

At the global launch of the Panasonic Lumix S1 and Lumix S1R  full-frame earlier this year, Panasonic also revealed its plans for its new full frame mirrorless camera  system in a fast-moving big-screen presentation. And in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it-moment it showed a slide which revealed not only its own plans for native Lumix S lenses but also those of Leica and Sigma.

Since then Panasonic has unveiled a third camera in the line-up – the Panasonic Lumix S1H, which is aimed at cinematographers and which will go on sale in the fall for $4000. But what lenses can be used with these cameras?

Three Lumix S lenses are available right now, these are:

Lumix S 24-105mm f/4 MACRO OIS

This is the standard kit zoom, which is the lens most often bundled with the Lumix S1 or SR. The lens has a substantial feel, and is a good match for these chunky full-frame mirrorless cameras.

Lumix S PRO 50mm f/1.4

This is the first in the Lumix S Pro series, and boasts an 11-bladed iris for “exceptional” bokeh. Weighing 955g, Panasonic claims it has “outstanding” sharpness across the frame. There is no optical image stabilizer (OIS) in this model, but the cameras have in-body stabilization. 

Lumix S PRO 70-200mm f/4 OIS

This is the first telephoto in the range, with an f/4 constant aperture and built-in stabilization. With its tripod foot, and its substantial build this feels more like a 70-200mm f/2.8. 

These three lenses cover some of the basics, but this still leaves lots of gaps. 

We do know from Panasonic's  published roadmap (see below), though, that we can expect a 24-70mm f/2.8, 16-35mm f/4 and a 70-200mm f/2.8 in 2019. The 70-200mm f/2.8 is especially important but we don't expect it to be small – the 70-200mm f/4 launched with the S1 and S1R is no lightweight.

Panasonic has also announced both a DMW-STC14 1.4x teleconverter and a DMW-STC20 2x teleconverter for the L-mount system – which will go on sale in June for use with the 70-200mm f/4, and the upcoming 70-200mm f/2.8.

The latest L-mount roadmap – as shown by Panasonic at the launch of the Lumix GH-1

2020 will bring a super-telephoto lens, two primes and a macro lens, but that's all the information so far released.

The Panasonic roadmap is only part of the story, of course, because Leica and Sigma will be producing L-Mount lenses too.

The Panasonic Lumix S system is still in its infancy, but with support from Leica and Sigma it has two valuable allies.

Leica lenses are out there already

The first revelation was that there will be no fewer than 18 L-Mount lenses from Leica by the end of 2020. Leica already makes 8 L-Mount lenses for its Leica SL camera, which also uses the Leica L-Mount, which cover popular zoom and prime focal lengths (albeit at considerable cost!).

Leica L-mount lenses announced or launched so far are:

Super-Vario-Elmar-SL16–35 f/3.5–4.5 ASPH
Vario-Elmarit-SL 24–90 f/2.8–4 ASPH
APO-Summicron-SL 35 f/2 ASPH
Summicron-SL 50 f/1.4 ASPH
APO-Summicron-SL 50 f/2 ASPH
APO-Summicron-SL 75 f/2 ASPH
APO-Summicron-SL 90 f/2 ASPH
APO Vario-Elmarit-SL 90–280 f/2.8–4 

Leica also make adaptors to allow its own R-mount, M-mount and S-mount lenses to be used on L-mount cameras. Additionally, it has an adaptor for using Arri PL-mount cine lenses.

But that still leaves ten Leica lenses to come by the end of next year. We do know that 35mm f/2 and 50mm f/2 Summicron lenses are coming in 2019. 

21mm f/2, 24mm f/2 and 28mm f/2 Summicron lenses are scheduled for 2020.

Leica already makes L-Mount lenses like this (super-expensive) super-wideangle Vario-Elmar 16-35mm f/3.5–4.5 ASPH. and more are coming.

Leica already makes L-Mount lenses like this (super-expensive) super-wideangle Vario-Elmar 16-35mm f/3.5–4.5 ASPH. and more are coming.

Sigma L-mount lenses 

Leica lenses are traditionally fearsomely expensive, so these new Leica optics may be of interest only to high-end users and demanding professionals, but at the other end of the scale Sigma has built its business on making high-quality lenses at much lower prices than own-brand equivalents, so the news that there will be 14 L-Mount Sigma lenses by the end of 2020 was even more exciting.

These are the same 14 lenses which have already been adapted for the Sony FE mount and include wide-aperture primes from 14mm to 135mm. 

Sigma's L-mount lens line-up

The first 11 of these lenses, launched at CP+ earlier this year, will be:

  • Sigma 14mm F1.8 DG HSM Art ($1,599.00)
  • Sigma 20mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($899.00)
  • Sigma 24mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($849.00)
  • Sigma 28mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($1,399.00)
  • Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($899.00)
  • Sigma 40mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($1,399.00)
  • Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($949.00)
  • Sigma 70mm F2.8 DG Macro Art ($569.00)
  • Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($1,199.00)
  • Sigma 105mm F1.4 DG HSM Art ($1,599.00)
  • Sigma 135mm F1.5 DG HSM Art ($1,399.00)

Sigma MC-21 mount adaptors

Sigma will also be making two mount adaptors, allowing Canon EF and Sigma SA mount lenses to be used on Panasonic S1 and S1R bodies, as well as on the Leica SL and its own yet-unnamed 60-megapixel L-mount camera (which is scheduled for 2020).

The Sigma MC-21 SA-L-mount converter promises the ability of being able to use a further 29 of Sigma's existing primes and zooms. The full list of these are:

12-24mm F4 DG HSM Art
14-24mm F2.8 DG HSM Art
24-35mm F2 DG HSM Art
24-70mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Art
24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM Art
60-600mm F4.5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports
70-200mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Sports
100-400mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary
120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Sports
150-600mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports
150-600mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary
14mm F1.8 DG HSM Art
20mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
24mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
28mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
35mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
40mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
70mm F2.8 DG MACRO Art
85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
105mm F1.4 DG HSM Art
135mm F1.8 DG HSM Art
500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sports

17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM Contemporary (APS-C)
18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM Art (APS-C)
18-200mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS HSM Contemporary (APS-C)
18-300mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS HSM Contemporary (APS-C)
50-100mm F1.8 DC HSM Art (APS-C)
30mm F1.4 DC HSM Art (APS-C)

L-mount alliance

Panasonic, Sigma and Leica are of course the three companies that make up the L-Mount alliance announced at Photokina 2018. Hopefully, we will now see the number of L-Mount lenses grow quickly.

This is essential if Panasonic is to make a serious dent in the full frame mirrorless camera market with its Lumix S1, Lumix S1R and the forthcoming 6K Lumix S1H

Sony already has a big lead in its native lens range, but Nikon and Canon are still in the early stages of populating their full frame mirrorless lens ranges – so if Panasonic is going to strike, now’s the time to do it!

Read more:

Best mirrorless cameras
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Best Panasonic cameras