The LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 is not Panasonic’s first 50mm prime. There is also a Panasonic LUMIX S Pro 50mm f1.4, launched at the same time as the Lumix S1 and S1R, but this is a big, heavy and extremely expensive lens. The new LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 is 2/3 of a stop slower, but much lighter and much less expensive.
Panasonic has already announced the LUMIX S 85mm F1.8, the first of four f/1.8 prime lenses that will share the same dimensions, filter threads and even control locations, so that they can be easily swapped out in video rigs, for example, without having to readjust follow focus attachments.
As we first reported last year, these four Panasonic F1.8 lenses will be the 85mm F1.8 already announced, a 24mm F1.8, a 35mm F1.8 and the LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 officially released today.
Panasonic LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 specs and features
The LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 is designed to be both light and affordable, unlike many of the full frame L-mount mirrorless lenses currently available.
The optical construction consists of 9 elements in 8 groups, with three aspherical lenses, one ED lens and one UHR (Ultra-High Refractive Index) lens. The aim is to deliver high “descriptive performance” and beautiful bokeh, helped by a 9-bladed circular diaphragm, and to suppress chromatic aberration.
The LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 is designed for both stills and video, with micro-step aperture control for smooth exposure shifts, suppressed focus breathing, and a weather resistant construction.
It’s very light for a full frame f/1.8 prime, at just 300g. It doesn’t look especially small, but it’s specifically designed to match the dimensions of all four lenses in this group, so its size is determined by the group as a whole.
Panasonic LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 price and availability
The LUMIX S 50mm F1.8 will be available by the end of June 2021 with an expected retail price of $449 / £429 / AU$699. Much of the news over the past few weeks has been around the new Panasonic Lumix GH5 II and Lumix GH6 development announcement, so this new lens will offer some encouragement to full frame Lumix users too.