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Thread: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

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    Senior Member DHart's Avatar
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    Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    I have on order a Contax Planar 85mm f/1.4 lens which weighs about 21 oz. (595 grams). I'm not sure of the lens adapter weight (Fotodiox?) but I think it may be about 4 to 5 oz., bringing total weight (without a lens hood) to at least 25 to 26 oz.

    I am planning to use the lens with the camera mounted on a tripod much of the time, so the camera's lens mount will be bearing more weight than any Panasonic lens weighs, but a good measure. For comparison, the heaviest Lumix lens available at present is the new 100-300, which weighs 18.3 oz. (520 grams).

    Does anyone know if this will be too much weight for the GH camera mount to safely support when the camera is tripod mounted?

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by DHart View Post
    I have on order a Contax Planar 85mm f/1.4 lens which weighs about 21 oz. (595 grams). I'm not sure of the lens adapter weight (Fotodiox?) but I think it may be about 4 to 5 oz., bringing total weight (without a lens hood) to at least 25 to 26 oz.

    I am planning to use the lens with the camera mounted on a tripod much of the time, so the camera's lens mount will be bearing more weight than any Panasonic lens weighs, but a good measure. For comparison, the heaviest Lumix lens available at present is the new 100-300, which weighs 18.3 oz. (520 grams).

    Does anyone know if this will be too much weight for the GH camera mount to safely support when the camera is tripod mounted?
    I seem to recall seeing a spec posted back when the Panasonic G1 was introduced (Nov 2008) that the Micro-FourThirds lens mount was designed to handle lenses which weighed up to 1 kg.

    I've used the Panasonic/Leica Summilux-D 25mm f/1.4 ASPH with DMW-MA1 adapter fitted to the G1, mounted on a tripod, many many times with no problems at all. That's about a 550g lens/adapter setup. Just be careful how you handle the camera and lens, and use a good quality tripod adapter that secures properly to the camera body. *

    * I used both Acratech and RRS camera plates on my G1. I found that the threaded mounting boss for the tripod screw on the G1 body sits about .001" proud of the body surface, causing all the mounting tension to be focused on two thin crescents around the mounting slot on the adapter. That's simply a bad idea.

    I cut some heavy-weight printing paper to fit the tripod adapter such that the threaded mounting boss would clear it and glued it to the adapter with a thin coat of rubber cement. After that, the tripod adapter fully engaged the bottom of the G1 body and was far more secure fit with less torque on the retaining bolt.

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    Senior Member f6cvalkyrie's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Hi !

    Godfrey has a very good memory , I had to check the manual, that states :

    "if you use a heavy lens (more than approx 1 kg), do not hold the camera by the strap, but hold both the camera and the lens"

    I hope this helps,
    Rafael
    E-M1/GH2/G1 Full Spectrum & lots of lenses
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/f6cvalk...th/9226689839/

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    Senior Member DHart's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Excellent... thanks for that info. I've been searching the internet for m4/3 mount capacity and coming up empty.

    With adapter, I think the Planar 85/1.4 weighs about 700 gr. so it looks like this set-up will just squeek in with camera mounted on a tripod without too much worry about damage to the camera/lens mount. Certainly, careful handling would be especially important.

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    Senior Member Tesselator's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Yeah, the spec is 1kg. I have some lenses that are 1kg though and you don't want that much weight hanging horizontally off the GH1/2's mount. At 1kg you can see the front of the camera (around the mount) begin to bow outward and actually distort the entire body. 700g lenses do not cause this at all so the real "user" limit is somewhere between 700g and 1kg. I have a 2kg lens and you can tell from just touching the camera that it should always be handled by the lens and never the camera body.

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    Senior Member DHart's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Tesselator... thanks very much for that info... there's no way I would want any bowing or distortion of the front of the camera... but I guess I'm ok at around 700 gr.

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    Senior Member Tesselator's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    It should be fine. (Famous last words aye?) I shot kind of a lot with the FD 85mm F1.2L which is 690g with the hood and cap on. Just be careful! Warranty down-time is a drag (if you can even get Panasonic to honor theirs...).

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    Senior Member RichA's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    I seem to recall seeing a spec posted back when the Panasonic G1 was introduced (Nov 2008) that the Micro-FourThirds lens mount was designed to handle lenses which weighed up to 1 kg.

    I've used the Panasonic/Leica Summilux-D 25mm f/1.4 ASPH with DMW-MA1 adapter fitted to the G1, mounted on a tripod, many many times with no problems at all. That's about a 550g lens/adapter setup. Just be careful how you handle the camera and lens, and use a good quality tripod adapter that secures properly to the camera body. *

    * I used both Acratech and RRS camera plates on my G1. I found that the threaded mounting boss for the tripod screw on the G1 body sits about .001" proud of the body surface, causing all the mounting tension to be focused on two thin crescents around the mounting slot on the adapter. That's simply a bad idea.

    I cut some heavy-weight printing paper to fit the tripod adapter such that the threaded mounting boss would clear it and glued it to the adapter with a thin coat of rubber cement. After that, the tripod adapter fully engaged the bottom of the G1 body and was far more secure fit with less torque on the retaining bolt.
    I think a kilo is reasonable, just don't go dangling it for hours off your shoulder that way. I destroyed the eyelets on my Olympus E-1 doing that and it's not a cheap fix. How I wish all cameras had E-3/5 slotted eyelets!!
    Also, G-camera eyelets have been known to work themselves loose, so avoid strain on them.

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by RichA View Post
    I think a kilo is reasonable, just don't go dangling it for hours off your shoulder that way. I destroyed the eyelets on my Olympus E-1 doing that and it's not a cheap fix. How I wish all cameras had E-3/5 slotted eyelets!!
    Also, G-camera eyelets have been known to work themselves loose, so avoid strain on them.
    Dangling any heavy lens by the mounting flange is asking for trouble. I don't even put neckstraps on my cameras ... use a hand-strap and keep it in a bag when not in use.

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    It's important to remember that it's not only about the weight, but also how far away from the body the weight is placed. One kilogram placed directly on the body will induce less strain on the lens mount than one kilogram a couple of centimeters out, which is the case when using an adapter.

    I use the same lens, the Contax Planar 85mm f/1.4, on my GH1, and feel that it's indeed close to maximum of what I would have hanging that far out from the camera body. The strain on the mount also influences the way vibrations live and die with the camera combination. That is not a big problem with a lens as short as the 85mm, but with the OM Zuiko 500mm f/8 Reflex, it's very hard to get photos without blur using the GH1 on a tripod. With the Nikkor 500mm f/8 Reflex, which has a tripod mount, the problem is much less apparent, probably partly because the lens/body combo is in balance on the tripod.

    With longer shutter times, particularly around one second, my guess is that it may be a noticeable problem with the 85mm as well, although not to the same degree.

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorgen Udvang View Post
    It's important to remember that it's not only about the weight, but also how far away from the body the weight is placed. ...

    That is not a big problem with a lens as short as the 85mm, but with the OM Zuiko 500mm f/8 Reflex, it's very hard to get photos without blur using the GH1 on a tripod. ...
    For a longer lens like the OM 500/8, I'd rig a tripod mount and support for the lens. Manfrotto makes one that can be adapted.

    I haven't seen any problems with unsupported, relatively short 500g lenses like the Summilux or the combination of Pentax 135 plus EC14, but I had issues with the Nikkor 180/2.8AI that was long, heavy, and just a pain to try to fit any kind of support other than a bean bag to.

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Not easy to fit a tripod mount to the OM 500/8, since the retractable hood and the focus ring takes up all the space except 8-9mm at the rear end:



    The best camera for that lens is probably an E-5. With IBIS, the possibility of using relatively high ISO and enough mass in the camera to dampen vibrations from shutter and mirror, it would give good results hand held. I tried it with an E-P2, and that worked relatively well, but it was tricky to find a comfortable way of holding the combination because of the tiny camera body.

    I mostly use the 500mm for video on the GH1 now, since there's no shutter vibrations that way. At only 500g and 97mm length, it's really a super-duper long lens in a short package. It will be interesting to see how it works on a GH2 in video crop mode, giving a 2000mm eqv. focal length. I know a couple of motorsports locations where that can become really useful.

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorgen Udvang View Post
    Not easy to fit a tripod mount to the OM 500/8, since the retractable hood and the focus ring takes up all the space except 8-9mm at the rear end:



    The best camera for that lens is probably an E-5. With IBIS, the possibility of using relatively high ISO and enough mass in the camera to dampen vibrations from shutter and mirror, it would give good results hand held. I tried it with an E-P2, and that worked relatively well, but it was tricky to find a comfortable way of holding the combination because of the tiny camera body.

    I mostly use the 500mm for video on the GH1 now, since there's no shutter vibrations that way. At only 500g and 97mm length, it's really a super-duper long lens in a short package. It will be interesting to see how it works on a GH2 in video crop mode, giving a 2000mm eqv. focal length. I know a couple of motorsports locations where that can become really useful.
    Looks to be about the same size, weight and problem to support as the Nikkor 180/2.8. I made a "soft" Y cradle gizmo with thin leather wrapping on it that bolted to the tripod and let me support the lens on the smooth portion of the focusing barrel. That let me focus it and stabilized the entire camera/lens assembly. Later, I sold the lens to a friend who'd gotten back into Nikon bodies. He's happy with it ... I don't need lenses that long most of the time, although I'd like one of the ZD 150/2 for the E-5: it's got a proper tripod foot.

    Ultra long lens video ... should be fun. :-)

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    Senior Member apicius9's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    I have not given my 85/1.4 Planar the attention it deserves, but I did not think that the weight is an issue for tripod mounting. I recently picked up a 2x Mutar converter and tried it out briefly. With this combination I would hesitate to put i on a tripod, mostly because it just extends out more and feels much less balanced already. Not yet sure what to do about it.

    Stefan

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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    Ultra long lens video ... should be fun. :-)
    It sure is. So much so that I carry this lens and a tripod/fluid head with me wherever I travel.

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    Senior Member DHart's Avatar
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    Re: Weight limit for legacy lens mounted on GH cameras?

    The Zeiss Planar T* 85/1.4 feels ok on my GH2. I wouldn't go much more than that without lens support, but I think this one just squeeks in for tripod use. Hand held (how I usually will shoot it) no problemo as I support the lens as much, if not moreso, than the camera. Nice lens!

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