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14mm or 17mm

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Rig Vader, Mar 13, 2013.

  1. Rig Vader

    Rig Vader Mu-43 Regular

    May 24, 2012
    I know this is a little old, but here goes...

    I can get the 14mm 2.5 new on ebay (stripped from kit) or the 17mm 2.8 slightly used slightly cheaper. I already own 45mm 1.8, 25mm 1.4 & 12-50mm

    I'm attracted to the 17mm focal length and I like that the color rendering is slightly different from the Panasonic lenses - 25mm and 20mm (which I sold to fund the 25mm).

    On the other hand I'm thinking that 17mm is too close to 25mm and that I'll better served with a trinity of 14, 25 & 45.

    I'd like to be able to shoot both street and "environmental people shots".

    Help me choose :) 
  2. Rig Vader

    Rig Vader Mu-43 Regular

    May 24, 2012
    Btw. I have the OMD, but would like to pick up something like a e-pm2 once prices go down enough.
  3. Chris5107

    Chris5107 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    I like the spread of the 14, 25, and 45 and this is what I have settled on. I too am going to sell off my 20 because the 14 does well with my wider shots and the 25 fills in the middle section with a strong lens. The 14 is not too wide for me and it seems to be a great lens for indoor type (i.e. closer in) shots.

    I have not used the 17 but I do like the trinity that you have called out and the range it will give you (similar coverage to the 14-42 kit lenses).
  4. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Sean Rastsmith
    The one suggestion I have heard many times here is to try them both out using the zoom. Which focal length do you use? Set the zoom on 14 or 17 and then leave it for a week. Color rendering doesn't matter if you don't like the composition.
  5. WasOM3user

    WasOM3user Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 20, 2012
    Lancashire, UK
    Just for info I am trying for the same three lenses 14 ( got), 25 (saving for) and 45 (got) and perhaps 45-175 to go with my OMD.

    However this just might be what I'm used to after after 30 years of using. 28, 50, 90 and 80-210 with my OM3!!! All three appear to get many good reviews and some of the pictures taken with them on the forum are truly awe inspiring. I have no issues with the lenses it's just the photographer that needs to improve,
  6. BLT

    BLT Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 13, 2013
    I own the 14mm and have spent some time with the 17mm on my camera.

    I think the 17 is a nicer lens. Better colour rendition, especially with skin tones.

    The 14mm focuses faster and quieter and is probably a more convenient general purpose video lens.

    On a side note. . .
    I am also partly hanging on to my 14mm because when/if I get the E-M5 I will be weather sealing my 14mm with the use of a filter and some good quality Black Silicone Sealant. I will lose manual focus obviously (by filling all gaps with sealant) but I don't mind that much.
  7. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    I have the 14, both 17's, 25 & 45. I generally use the 14 and 25 on the street.
    I never use the 45 as it's way to long. The 17 2.8 is a great street lens and I prefer it to the 17 1.8...shhhhhh! I will sell the 17 1.8 shortly, to a friend.

    If I had to choose between the 14 & the 17 I'd take the 14. You have to 25 so the 14 makes a nice combo.
    I'm old school so I use a pair of EP3's because they are great street cameras...hard to beat.
    These 2 lenses are great with this camera......
    Good luck in your quest.....
  8. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    I've had both and I prefered the 14mm. I like the color and contrast as well as the slightly smaller size.
  9. tol1l1yboy

    tol1l1yboy Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 12, 2013
    I love the 14 but don't have the 17. I went with the 25 instead...
  10. silversx80

    silversx80 Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 27, 2012
    North Carolina
    I love the 17/2.8, and it practically lives on my camera (E-M5). I've found that, for me, when I approach 14mm (with kit lenses), or slightly wider (have the 12-50, and used to have the 11-22), I want to go even wider than what's on the camera. With the 17, I don't feel that need.

    17mm seems just right for an "every day" lens, for my preferences. I'm going to end up with the PL25 soon, because sometimes I want something just a little different than the 17, but the 45 has too much reach. Need a nice "tweener" in my kit.
  11. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    Picking between those two, I'd take the 14mm. It's tiny, even compared to the Panasonic 20mm f/1.7, and as close to pocketable as you'll get on an E-PM2. It's small enough to toss in a shirt pocket if you even think you might want a wider lens. The 14mm I had was quite sharp and contrasty and fast to AF... really no downside to it IMO other than the slow-ish maximum aperture. I only sold mine because it wasn't getting used now that I don't really use pancake lenses.

    The 28mm vs 35mm (FF equivalent) FOV is an important part here too. If you don't have a strong preference for one or the other, I'd say get the 14mm since it has other advantages. I was a dedicated 50mm equivalent fan for quite a while and have the PL 25mm and CV 25mm lenses, but I've recently found I like 35mm and even 28mm FOV quite a lot, much to my surprise. My opinion is if you shoot with a wider lens long enough, you'll probably adapt to it if you give it a chance :smile:
  12. Rig Vader

    Rig Vader Mu-43 Regular

    May 24, 2012
    Hi People and thank you for the many replies - great stuff :) 

    I ordered the 14mm in the end. Here are my reasons:

    * Size

    * Looking through image threads I see more pictures that I like the look/quality off with the 14. The 17mm seems to have less keepers, although a lot af fantastic shots too. Guess I just a bit spoiled with sharpness being used to the 20mm and 25mm.

    * The challenge of shooting wide, which I think I need. There is just something pretty forgiving about slight tele and out of focus backgrounds :) 

    * I have th 25mm and I'm happy learning a "classic 50" for now and learning "classic 35" at a later stage.

    Thanks again!
  13. Rig Vader

    Rig Vader Mu-43 Regular

    May 24, 2012
    Ok, I digress.. After looking at other image threads of the 14mm and 17mm, I suddenly felt that the came 17mm out on top. For fun I then looked at an image thread for the 12-50mm and those pictures all looked awsome - which has not been my general experience with this lens (remember I've shot mostly primes for a while).

    So, instead I started focusing more on the focal length and to be honest I think I prefer 17mm and 12mm to 14mm. 17mm looks so classic/film, 12mm just that much more dramatic. Both just a bit more "right" than 14mm. Anyhow, the 14mm is in the mail, so only time will tell if I feel it's an award focal length, which is very much how I felt about my 20mm (vs. the 25mm that feels very right).

    At this point it only right to quote something my girlfriend once said here: "Honey, if you didn't second guess yourself after making a decision, I would be seriously worried" :) 

    I'll let you know how I fare
  14. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    The 14 and 17, so close and yet so far apart. Some folks on this forum love the 14 and the size on a Pen body is really nice. OTOH, some reviews don't think it's much better than the wide end of the kit zoom. The 17 2.8 is just as controversial in terms of IQ but that's mostly complaints about the sharpness in edges and corners. The center sharpness is very nice and the 17 also has some vigorous supporters. This is one of those cases where you may just have to try try them out to decide. I have both, and I lean considerably toward the 14.
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