Summary: I am an amateur photographer and I needed a wide angle lens to facilitate photographing a family reunion at which there would be a large number of people congregating in a rather large area. The lens fit the situation perfectly and I have also used it a number of times for scenery shooting. It is well worth the investment.
Summary: Just took this lens on a 2 week tour of the PacNWest, loved having the extra-wide shots of cities, tall trees, etc. At any appreciable zoom (which is not what the wide angle is for, admittedly) there is significant blurring around the edges of the image. Makes for some cool shots, actually, but occasionally made it a hassle to switch back and forth between the wide-angle adapter and regular/telephoto lenses.
Summary: I have just come back from a trip to the Grand Canyon where I could compare this lens with taking normal photos without it. It makes a big difference to my Canyon shots so I am very happy that I have purchased this lens. You have to be very careful not to take the photo when pointing towards the sun when using this lens to avoid reflections in the photo.
Summary: It's confession time: I've bought cheaper aftermarket accessory lenses for various cameras I've owned over the years and have had too many disappointments with the quality of the results. A non-Panasonic tele lens for my FZ-50 had color fringing and softness along with lack of contrast. So, for my wide accessory lens I went with the manufacturer's product this time.
Summary: This lens is quite expensive but delivers superb quality. If you're after picture quality, this is what you need. It was designed specifically for the cameras it works with, so you can see where the quality comes from. That's why I would not use a no-name, or even Nikon, or Olympus wide converter with my Panasonic camera. Also do not buy this to work with your non-Panasonic camera, I believe the quality would diminish.
Summary: The primary flaw of my Lumix DMC FZ8 is that it caters to the telephoto crowd--the same folks who got their first 35mm SLR and then wanted a telephoto zoom to go with it. The truth is, most people will use a good wide angle about 90 percent of the time. They're also the same folks pushed up against a wall trying to fit in wide shots. So along comes Panasonic's answer: a 3-element lens that gives users the wide angles they need.
Summary: I got a super zoom digital camera (Panasonic DMC-FZ7) but I really miss using a wide angle lens when I want to take the spectacular landscape photos during my travels. This serves its purpose! I love it!
Summary: The Panasonic Lumix FZ50 is an extraordinary digital camera. Leica design approved optics deliver crisp images on a 10 Megapixel sensor. Great ergonomics and very responsive handling. Granted, it is not a Nikon or Canon DSLR. You don't want the FZ50 for sports or street photography where there truly is a critical moment that must be captured. But for everything else, the FZ50 is more than fine and making it even better are the auxillary lenses, the LT-55 and LW-55.