The Lumix 26mm f/8 is a $200 Fixed Aperture, Manual Focus Pancake Lens

A close-up view of a Lumix S 26mm camera lens. The lens has a sleek, black design with various engraved markings indicating focal length and aperture settings. It is set against a plain, white background.

Designed to pair with the newly-announced Lumix S9, Panasonic announced the super-compact and lightweight S-series 26mm f/8. Despite fixed focal length and aperture, Panasonic assures it will deliver outstanding image quality and high resolution.

The 26mm f/8 is a surprisingly limited lens — especially considering that it is designed to pair with the S9. Being a prime lens is not unusual, but seeing a fixed aperture and manual focus-only lens from a first-party manufacturer in 2024 is not just unusual, it’s unheard of.

The 26mm f/8 is meant to pair specifically with the S9 — in fact, Panasonic characterizes it as a “perfect match” with the new lightweight camera. It is the lens that Panasonic shows attached to the Lumix S9 in most of the marketing imagery for the new camera.

“With a focal length of 26mm, a fixed F-stop of f/8, and manual focus only, this new pancake lens is designed for the simple enjoyment of manual shooting with creative composition and exposure,” Panasonic says. “Perfect for spontaneously capturing fleeting moments, the 26mm delivers unique results compared to the existing line-up of Lumix S Series wide-angle, fixed focal length lenses.”

Side view of a black camera lens with markings showing "26 mm" and "0.25m/0.82ft." The lens has textured focus and zoom rings, with a small red indicator and the letter "S" on the side. The design is sleek and compact.

Panasonic doesn’t just state its manual focus only — its press materials hype up the limitation by stating it allows creators to “take full control of their own personal style.”

The limitations don’t stop there, as the lens also doesn’t accept any filters. What photographers get in exchange is extreme portability — it weighs about 58 grams or 0.13 pounds and measures 18.1mm long (about 0.7 inches). Panasonic advertises it as so small it can fit in a pocket and the ease with which it can be carried around makes it ideal for “spontaneous snapshots.”

A black Lumix camera lens with a focal length range of 9-18mm and an aperture of f/2.8. The lens features a sleek, compact design with clear markings and a smooth, ribbed grip around the circumference for easy handling.

The new Lumix S 26mm f/8 lens is set to be available in “late June 2024” for $199.99.

In Lieu of a New Kit Lens

While the 26mm f/8 is launching alongside the S9 next month, it might not be the lens that will be most often paired with it by later this year because Panasonic is working on a new Lumix S 18-40mm f/4.5-6.3 lens.

The development announcement is light on details but Panasonic calls it a “compact and versatile zoom lens ideal for daily use.” It will have a minimum shooting distance of 0.15 meters (0.49 feet) and is, like the pancake lens, means to match with the S9 and give it the ability to shoot from the ultra-wide to semi-standard focal lengths in one lens body.

Panasonic did not say when the lens will arrive exactly, but says to expect it “soon.”