What are the best budget Micro Four Thirds lenses?

What are the best budget Micro Four Thirds lenses?

Mirrorless cameras are now common with filmmakers. Many Panasonic and Sony cameras support the micro four thirds mount and so do some Blackmagic Pocket Cinema cameras. If you are the owner of a MFT camera you will be keen to expand your lens collection without breaking the bank.

Lenses for MFT cameras are often expensive but there are some quality lenses available for the lower budget filmmaker. The following lenses have various focal lengths so you should be able to find something that will suit your cinematic needs. They may be budget lenses but that does not mean they sacrifice image quality.

Sigma 30mm f/1.4 DC DN

The Sigma 30mm f/1.4 DC DN is a quality lens, which will give you a slightly wider view than a 50mm lens. It is under $300 and is a quality lens that will be of great benefit on any film shoot. It offers a bright f/1.4 aperture and on Sony E mount APS-C format cameras and offers a 35mm equivalent of a short standard lens of 45mm.

The MFT fit version offers the equivalent of a long standard lens of 60mm. The focus-by-wire manual focusing ring is generously wide and apart from that, there is nothing else to disturb the clean lines of the lens. There is no weather resistance, so you should take suitable care in wet weather.

Price $259.00 £186.00 €216.00

Panasonic Lumix G Macro 30mm f/2.8 ASPH

The Panasonic Lumix G Macro 30mm f/2.8 ASPH is a quality lens under $300 that delivers sharpness across the frame from maximum aperture. It also has useful optical stabilisation and life-size magnification at its closest focusing distance. It is a light weight lens with a compact size that will be useful on many film shoots.

It has a micro four thirds mount and features optical image stabilisation to remove any camera shake. The lens barrel is constructed from a mix of metal and high-quality plastics. It has a glossy finish and the bayonet mount is also metal. It is very compact for a macro lens and only weighs 180g.

Price $297.00 £213.00 €248.00

Olympus M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8 ED Premium

The Olympus M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8 ED Premium is a quality lens that is under $300 and can produce excellent images. Its 25mm lens will give you the equivalent of 50mm on an MFT camera and it is a well-built lens with excellent sharpness.

It is also lightweight with a compact size and has a seven blade circular diaphragm. Its fast f1.8 circular aperture delivers beautifully soft defocused backgrounds, which are perfect for portraits. It also delivers superb detail even when lighting is less than ideal, which means you can skip the flash in many low-light situations.

Price $288.00 £206.00 €240.00

Panasonic LUMIX G 42.5mm f/1.7 ASPH

The Panasonic LUMIX G 42.5mm f/1.7 ASPH is another excellent lens which will give you faultless performance for under $350. This medium telephoto lens for micro four thirds cameras provides an angle of view equivalent to an 85mm lens when you use it on a 35mm format camera and sports a fast f/1.7 maximum aperture. It also features optical image stabilisation to remove any problematic camera shake.

The lens barrel is made from high quality plastic that has a metallic finish. Despite only weighing around 130g, the lens is robust and will put up with most film shoots you may wish to use it on. The bright, large aperture F1.7 lens draws maximum light to produce beautiful background defocus effects for a more creative image.

Price $349.00 £250.00 €291.00

Sigma 30mm f/2.8 EX DN A Art

The Sigma 30mm f/2.8 EX DN A Art is a quality 30mm lens that can fit both micro four thirds and Sony NEX cameras and costs under $300. On micro four thirds bodies, this lens provides an angle of view equivalent to a 60mm lens on a 35mm camera. It sports a bright f/2.8 aperture and a newly developed linear focus motor.

The auto focus is also excellent and fast. The lens mount is made of metal and high quality plastics and it has a matte finish for the lens barrel. It weighs only 130g and is the perfect companion for smaller camera bodies.

Price $207.00 £148.00 €173.00

Olympus 45mm f/1.8 Zuiko Digital Micro Four Thirds

The Olympus 45mm f/1.8 Zuiko is quality lens for under $300. This compact telephoto prime lens weighs only 116g, which makes it a perfect companion for lightweight micro four thirds cameras. The lens barrel is constructed from high quality plastics, with a smart metallic finish.

The lens mount is made from metal, which should help to enhance the durability of the design. The build quality is good for a lens of this price and it manages to feel relatively solid but also lightweight. Auto focus is performs internally so the 37mm filter thread does not rotate or extend during use. A slim decorative ring with a metallic finish is located around the filter thread and you can remove this to expose a bayonet fitting.

Price $279.00 £200.00 €233.00

Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 II Lumix G Micro Four Thirds Lens

The Panasonic Lumix G 20mm f/1.7 II is a great quality wide angle lens for under $300. It is extremely compact and lightweight with a bright f/1.7 aperture. This gives it a beautifully soft focus on backgrounds to help subjects stand out. The 20mm micro four thirds lens is equivalent to 40mm on a 35mm camera. This is the second model of this lens and features a redesign from the old version with new metal parts.

This gives it an improvement in resistance to flare. It also has a slight improvement in contrast. The redesign also improves the position of the surrounding plastic that is closest to the lens. This results in an improvement in shielding light from hitting the lens at various angles. It has the same excellent image quality of its predecessor, with a compact size that will be ideal for many film shoots.

Price $267.00 £191.00 €223.00

Panasonic Lumix G 25mm f/1.7 ASPH

The Panasonic Lumix G 25mm f/1.7 ASPH is a quality lens at a bargain price and you can pick one up for under $150. This micro four thirds lens is the equivalent of the 50mm f/1.8 or f/1.7 lens. These lenses were considered the standard lenses for 35mm film cameras for decades. The lens is compact and light, weighing just 125g.

It is also well finished, using high quality polycarbonate materials, but with a metal mount. The lens bayonets smoothly and securely onto your camera and there are 7 diaphragm blades for light adjustment. The filter thread is 46mm and surrounding this is a Decoration Ring. Before the lens hood can be attached this ring has to be removed.

Price $150.00 £107.00 €125.00

Olympus 9mm f/8 Fisheye Body Cap

The Olympus 9mm f/8 Fisheye Body Cap is little more than a body cap with some glass in it, yet it is still capable of delivering decent quality images.

It is perfect if you fancy experimenting with the fisheye look but don’t relish the thought of forking out for a proper expensive fisheye lens. If that is what you are after, than this lens is ideal. Overall, this lens is fun to use, thanks to its compact size and fuss-free operation.

Price $100.00 £71.00 €83.00

Other articles like this:

What are the best budget wireless microphones?

What are the best budget shotgun microphones for video cameras?

What is the best Smartphone filmmaking kit for Social Media?

10 essential accessories for shooting video with your DSLR