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40-150 f2.5 cropped better than 45-200?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by anthonyrc, Oct 29, 2015.

  1. anthonyrc

    anthonyrc Mu-43 Regular

    55
    Feb 5, 2013
    I am looking at the options for long zooms for my EM1 and G6 kit, I already have the P45-150 and P45-200 and comparing to two haven't managed to reach a conclusion but tending to think that the extra reach of the 200 is somewhat hypothetical due to the falloff in performance at the long end. Is the O40-150 2.8 such that an uprezzed crop would look better than the 45-200 at 200mm?. Whatever, I'm inclined to keep the P45-150 for its compactness and stabilisation on the G6 though this might be replaced by a 45-175.

    Tony
     
  2. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Maybe I had a bad copy, but the 45-200 I owned was probably the worst lens I've seen on u43. The 40-150 f2.8 is one of the best. I'd think a cropped shot from the latter would beat anything the 45-200 could produce.
     
  3. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I think a cropped shot from even the 45-175 could do just as well compared to the 45-200 actually. The 40-150 f/2.8 definitely (and if not, there's always the TC to get 210mm f/4). I think the 45-200 is effectively dead from Panasonic's PoV, it doesn't support DFD or fast C-AF at all, unlike say the 45-175.
     
  4. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    Lorenzo
    I've done a similar comparison here with another lens: https://www.mu-43.com/threads/80982/

    My advice is to do the comparison yourself, I've noticed/learned much more practical things then I expected. For example the first thing that comes to my mind is that you are comparing a 2.8 lens to a 5.6. So the comparison is fair only if you have good light or the ISO difference is going to trump everything else. Even with the same ISO the 200mm requires a little more speed to get tack sharp shots and the 2.8 again has an even bigger advantage here.

    I went from 200 to 300, you are doing a smaller upscale, it should be even better. Then you do not always need to upscale, you just crop and could be even too much resolution for most outputs (prints, web, etc.). Then there are basic upscale softwares and super smart ones that can make a difference (or upscaling from a raw or from a jpeg/tiff).
    Then noise is "amplified" a lot with upscale, so it's better to denoise first, but an upscale after denoise is not as good, so the upscale trick works only for low noise shots (low iso, minimal shadow recovery, etc.).

    Then you have contrast, aberrations, etc. that are not related to the magnification.
     
  5. Holoholo55

    Holoholo55 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 13, 2014
    Honolulu, HI
    Walter
    I found that to get acceptable photos from the Pana 45-200 at 200 I had to stop down to f8. I don't have the Oly 40-150 Pro, but I bet you'd get great results even at f2.8. If you stop down a bit, it'd get even sharper. I think the 40-150 wins easily, even cropped, although as wjiang noted, you could use the TC14 to get up to 210.

    However, not having the wallet to get the Pro + TC combo, I opted for a used Olympus Zuiko 50-200 SWD 4/3rd lens. Even with an MMF-3 adaptor and EC14 teleconverter, I saved more than $1,000 and get great results. Getolympus has refurbished ones right now for $879. It's a bit bigger and heavier than the 40-150 Pro, but I can live with that. However, an EM1 is pretty much a requirement for this lens to get acceptably fast AF, IMHO. Since you have one, this is an option.
     
  6. anthonyrc

    anthonyrc Mu-43 Regular

    55
    Feb 5, 2013
    I did a test of the P45-150 and 45-200 today, wide open as more often than not the light in UK doesn't give you the luxury of being able to stop down. Informal test procedure using hand held as I would in real life shooting. At their maximum FLs with the 150 uprezzed to match the 200 there is very little in it looking at 100%. The shorter lens edges it slightly on sharpness and has a little more "pop". Aside from pixel peeping reducing to 50 on screen both look like they would produce sharp prints
     
  7. kwalsh

    kwalsh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    775
    Mar 3, 2012
    Baltimore, MD
    There is a lot of "copy variation" with the 45-200. At least early on there were some truly horrible 45-200 lenses going around. I very fortunately have an excellent copy, and even with my copy you can upsize from 175 to 200 with no difference in IQ compared to just shooting at 200. Now the 40-150/2.8 is just wickedly sharp across the frame. It is possible the 45-200 at the very center of the image *might* do better than the 150 upsized just because we are talking about 9MP vs 16MP and most lenses are very sharp right at the center. But moving to the edges the 45-200 falls apart quickly compared to the 40-150 which is still very sharp in the corners. So I'd expect the 150 would definitely look better upsized compared to the 200 when looking at the edges or corners.

    It sounds like based on your test to day just using the P45-150 that even that much less accomplished lens upsizes well against your P45-200. So I suspect the 40-150 would be even better.
     
  8. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Portugal
    Jaime
    I had a very good copy of the Pana 45-200mm.
    I gave it to my son when I started to use more prime than zooms.
    There seams to be in fact a lot of copy variation.
     
  9. Holoholo55

    Holoholo55 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 13, 2014
    Honolulu, HI
    Walter
    That in itself is not a good thing. As customers, we expect good consistent quality. My 45-200 wasn't bad, but wasn't so good at the long end, which is why I replaced it with a used Olympus 50-200 SWD. However, my friend's 45-200 is problematic, so much so that he's considering sending it in for repair. Inconsistency signals to me that either manufacturing QC is not up to par, the design is difficult to manufacture consistently, or that it's too fragile and gets knocked out of alignment easily.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. phlk

    phlk Mu-43 Rookie

    17
    Feb 20, 2014
    London UK
    Hi Tony
    I have had the 45-200mm and rather gave up it because of the speed and quality, I could get better selectively enlarging from the Olympus 75mm. The 40-150 f2.8 is a fabulous piece of kit and so sharp. If you would like to see what I get out of it here is a link to some shots with and without the converter (you can see the EXIF information to see what focal distance each was shot at)
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/phils--photos/albums/72157649939230910
    I do hope this helps with your decision
    Regards Phil
     
  11. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Portugal
    Jaime
    There was one thing I liked on my Pana 45-200: that was the zoom ring.
    It was very smooth.
    Better than my Panasonic 100-300 that is a bit stiff.
    I never find any manufacture problems on my copy. I might had a rare good copy.
    Glad that I didn't know about all the bad copies floating around when I purchased my copy.
     
  12. anthonyrc

    anthonyrc Mu-43 Regular

    55
    Feb 5, 2013
    Hope I don't live to regret it but have ordered a P45-175 and put the 45-200 up for sale. Looking about I think my copy is actually OK so am changing more to save weight and space for my two body travel kit and have power zoom for video. A long term decision on the O40-150 f2.8 is pending how I get on with the 12-40 I'm waiting for and whether I am covering the track cycling world championships next Easter.
     
  13. kwalsh

    kwalsh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    775
    Mar 3, 2012
    Baltimore, MD
    I switched to a 45-175 from the 45-200 a few years ago when there was a good deal on the 45-175. Really no regrets, but the 45-175 is a bit sensitive to "shutter shock" so be sure to use whatever features your cameras have to combat that (for the E-M1 that'd be the 0 second anti-shock). The 45-175 is much more likely to come on a day hike with me than the 45-200 ever was.

    The 40-150/2.8 is a beast of a lens for m43 - but of course still dainty compared to comparable reach on APS-C or FF.
     
  14. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I think it really varies - I didn't find shutter shock any worse on my previous E-M5 compared to the 40-150R. Maybe it's the slower 1/4000s shutter. No problems on the E-M1 either with EFC enabled - really looking forward to the EFC burst shooting update actually.
     
  15. kwalsh

    kwalsh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    775
    Mar 3, 2012
    Baltimore, MD
    Yes, most definitely varies for sure! I rarely had a problem with the 45-175 on my GH2 while people with a G3 found it unusable. I never shot the 45-175 on my E-M5 to really get a feel for whether it was a problem or not there, but EFC should solve the problem on other bodies for sure.

    The main comparison I was making was between the 45-200 and 45-175, the 45-200 is nearly immune from shutter shock on any body because it is such a big heavy lens. The lighter telephotos all are much more likely to end up with shutter shock issues.

    The 45-175 is a bit of a special case because certain camera shutters seem to freak out the IS system making shock problems a lot worse - even with IS disabled. When the lens was first released it was awful. Then Panasonic issued a FW update that helped the problem quite a bit - but it was still too susceptible to shutter shock on the G3 which had a notoriously "shocky" shutter.
     
  16. anthonyrc

    anthonyrc Mu-43 Regular

    55
    Feb 5, 2013
    That's interesting as we still have a G3 in the family I'll give it a try when it arrives. I'm hanging on to my P45-150 to see which I prefer, but hopefully the latter will be for sale soon.