$1000 complete lens kit

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by tkbslc, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    I'm switching from a 60D kit to a E-m10 in hopes to lighten my camera bag. I mainly shoot general family, travel, and lots of portraits (have 5 daughters!). I've been using a Canon 15-85, Sigma 30mm, Takumar 50mm f1.4, Tokina 50-135mm f2.8 and 55-250mm IS. I don't need something that matches that range or features perfectly, though.

    What would you recommend for a lens kit, assuming I have about $1000+/- for lenses and don't mind picking up a few used. I'm not a super pixel peepr, but I do like nice bang-for-the-buck lenses and I'm trying to make this a compact and light kit. Since I'm buying a new e-m10, some of the lens bundle deals looked good.

    Just as an initial thought, I'm kind of thinking 14mm f2.5, 25mm f1.8 and 45mm f1.8 right off the bat. 25mm is only $299 in the bundle. Would the kit lenses (14-42/40-150) be worth adding to the camera bundle for $99?. I think I can get a used 45mm for less than the $300 bundle price and used 14mm are pretty cheap. I'm torn on whether to add one of the pancake zooms. They are tiny, but it adds $250 or so to the kit.

    Any other suggestions? What would you buy for a starter lens kit with $1000?
  2. MadMarco

    MadMarco Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 30, 2014
    Guildford, England
    I really like my Oly 17mm 1.8 it works really well on the E-M10, lightning fast AF and bright enough to be used without a flash in pretty much any conditions.

    Also I've just got the Samyang 7.5mm Fish-Eye lens, which is proving a ton of fun. It's a manual lens, but native m43 fit and I reckon that it's really good value for money. There is a Rokinon version which is basically the same lens.
  3. Chris5107

    Chris5107 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    I would get a used panasonic 12-35mm. This all around lens has high IQ, is relatively light for an f2.8 lens, and is relatively compact compared to others. Next get the Oly 40-150 f4-5.6 zoom. This lens is cheap ($100 used, sometimes good sales on new) and will give you significant range. Next get a used Oly 45mm 1.8 for the portraits. This is a classic m4/3 lens and it can be had very cheap used or refurbished. All of this should cover you well and be around $1000.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. physicsdude

    physicsdude Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 11, 2014
    Your kit idea of 14, 25 and 45 sounds good! I wouldn't go for the 14-42, but would get the 40-150. Sometimes you will need more than 45.
    Personally I am torn between 45 and 60mm. I couldnt decide yet
  5. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    + 1
  6. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    I'm having a hard time deciding between 14/25/45 or 17/45. Primes. Pretty close in cost, actually. I've heard mixed reports on the 17mm sharpness, though. 25mm I've never heard any complaints in that regard.

    I don't think I'm too interested in the f2.8 standard zooms because I want the option of just using a small light prime. Maybe later, but for now it would eat up too much of my budget.

    Thanks for the replies.
  7. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    You will want to search the forum as this subject comes up often. I am in the 17/45 camp, if I am going to add a third prime it would be the 12 for special subjects.
  8. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    I'm firmly in the 17/45 camp as well. I think the negatives about the 17 are much overstated. But, if you liked the Sig 30 a lot the 25/1.8 might be a better match for you.

    My $1000 kit would be the 12-50, for macro capability and general versatility, the 17/1.8, the 45/1.8, and the 40-150. Buying used you'd be at $800 or so. Then I'd start saving for the 75/1.8.

    Keep in mind that the Sigmas (19, 30, 60/2.8) are nice high value options as well.
  9. DMLarson

    DMLarson Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 19, 2014
    I used to have the Canon 55-250 and now have the Olympus 40-150 f/4-5.6. I highly recommend getting the Olympus 40-150.
  10. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    I had a EOS M with a 22mm f2 and a 60D with a 30mm f1.4 at one point. Honestly couldn't pick a favorite between 50 and 35mm FOV. I was kind of leaning toward 25mm though, because it's sharper and cheaper. I could also see splitting the difference and going 20mm f1.7 II, too. 25mm just seems like a no brainer at $299 with a camera purchase, though.
  11. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    Taylor, you may want to register at getolympus.com. The tend to have pretty decent sale prices on refurbs around holidays. President's Day may be an opportunity. Know ahead of time that they tend to have limited quantities and sell out pretty quickly, so if you are interested check early in the day (or very late at night) and be ready to purchase.
  12. NWright

    NWright Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 13, 2014
    I can comment on most of these lenses..my advice is worth as much as you pay for it :)

    25/1.8 - Not a huge fan - I currently own BOTH this and the PL25/1.4.

    Regardless of others tests/comments I enjoy the results from the PL25 significantly more than the oly 25 thus my oly 25 is on the selling block.

    To give you a sense of size differences - I can just fit the em5 with the 25 1.8 into my winter button up coat side pocket. The em5 with the pl25 will not fit.

    P14 - I have this lens and I actually quite like its rendering - for a "bang for you buck" I would put this lens near the top as it is only ~ $160 if you get a good deal. The em5 plus this lens makes for a very compact take-me-anywhere setup. For that reason alone I'd highly recommend at least one of the pancakes from panny - or the also small 17/1.8 // 15/1.7

    Oly 45/1.8 - I'm totally split on this lens at the moment. I enjoy the "look" from both of my panny lenses more than this lens - but this lens is different enough in focal length than the others above that it has been GREAT to have. I also enjoy that it is quite small and thus can easily be toted around.

    That said - I'm really considering moving into something like the sigma 60 f2.8 for a different "look" out of my lens. (the 1.8 would be missed, I suspect, however)

    Oly 40 - 150R - I also own this lens and from time to time it has been very useful to have - for a relatively long telephoto, it is very small and lightweight and also very inexpensive - highly recommended.

    My various use - cases and setups:

    Family time - 80% PL25, 10% 45/1.8, 10% 14/2.5

    Night out on the town - 85% 14/2.5, 15% 45/1.8

    Hike/outdoors - 50% PL25, 20% 14/2.5, 20% 40-150 , 10% 45/1.8

    - General Note: I wish I had some weather sealing - so I've considered picking up a 12 - 50 for a general weather-proof setup....but with the em10....

    Again - just my .02 - Have fun with the selection process!
  13. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Feb 19, 2010
    That's a fine selection.

    I'm not sure about the kit zoom. I have gone back and forth, but generally find if I have the 14 and 25, I never touch the kit zoom. I think the pancake zooms are weak performers.

    What about telephoto?

    For fun, I'd also recommend the lens cap fisheye. Buy it used, and never sell it. Use it once and a while for smiles :)
  14. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    The other thing to consider is picking up a $10 adapter to use your Tak 50/1.4. Maybe you won't even need the 45/1.8.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I was going to suggest this as well, but in my opinion the Tak can't substitute for the Oly 45mm if a compact kit is of value, as the OP has stated. I have this lens and have used it on my E-PL1 and G6 and its definitely hefty. I do however, agree that an adapter is certainly worth picking up just to have a play with from time to time.
  16. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    Thanks for the tip.

    Also, where you get my name from? :)
  17. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    Sorry, I forgot to mention that we have the O40 - 150 as well. It is inexpensive but we have taken some great pics with it. There is an O40 - 150 image thread on this forum that you may want to look at.
  18. EdH

    EdH Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Jul 14, 2014
    Devon, UK
    I'm very happy with my selection of P14/O25/O45. The 25mm gets almost all the action. All were bought second hand, so even when I add the 40-150 my wife gave me for Christmas and the Sigma 60mm I simply couldn't stop myself from buying on eBay last night, I think the lot would come in at around $1100.
    I'd go for the 25mm to start. It's a good deal and a great and flexible lens. Source the others second hand, although In my experience the 40-150 and Sigma 60 can be found new for pretty much the same as used eBay prices.
    I have to say I've not tried the 17mm. I picked the 25 to replace my P20 (lovely, lovely lens but frustratingly slow AF compared to the others) simply to give a more even spread as I already had the 14 and 45.
  19. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    Sorry! It dawned on me after the first post I made in this thread that you are tkbslc from POTN. I answered with your name in my second post without even thinking about it. Hope you weren't in stealth mode.
  20. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    That's alright. I just couldn't figure out where I had shared my name on this forum yet! Didn't know I was famous. :smile:

    What's your POTN name? I have to admit I've not been as active in that forum since the new design. That and losing interest in my SLR around the same time.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.