Panasonic LX3: How wide is wide?

Yesterday I took a couple pictures at the lake, using the unassisted LX3 at its widest angle (= 24mm in full-frame terms), and then using the Panasonic DMW-LW46 Wide Conversion Lens. Unfortunately, the scene I was photographing didn’t have enough distinguishing features in it to show the difference in angles of view clearly. So today I tried again, this time shooting the back of my house.

Here’s a shot of our garage, with the LX3 zoomed in as tight as it can go (= 60mm in full-frame terms). Note that in this shot and in the two that follow, I’m standing about 30 ft away from the near corner of the garage.

In full-frame terms, 60mm is a weak telephoto; the “normal” angle of view is around 50mm.

The following shot was taken with the LX3 zoomed out to its widest angle of view (= 24mm in full-frame terms).

And finally, here’s the same scene captured using the LW46 Conversion Lens, which takes the LX3 to an effective ultra-wide angle of view of 18mm.

Is the LW46 worth its small price? I certainly think so.


Postscript a week later (6-19-2010): Notwithstanding the enthusiasm I felt for it when I was writing about it above, I decided to return the LW46 wide-angle conversion lens. The lens itself really is quite good and I would not discourage anybody from getting it. However, what I decided for myself was that the lens kind of defeated the point of the LX3, which is to have a small camera with some flexibility. With the conversion lens mounted, the LX3 is no longer pocketable. And once the conversion lens is attached, you can’t zoom; you’re only able to shoot at the effective 18mm focal length. I’ve decided that, when I need to go wider than 24mm (effective), I can just take two or three shots and stitch them together. See my next post.

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