Already have the Olympus OM 50mm f1.8. Will I greatly benefit if I get the Olympus 45mm f1.8?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Zancrow, Jan 25, 2015.

  1. Zancrow

    Zancrow Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 16, 2014
    Aside from the AF of the 45mm, would I find a lot of improvement if I get it? Would you say the sharpness, color rendition is better than the 50mm? I mostly like to shoot portraits.

  2. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    The 45/1.8 is sharper, smaller, lighter, doesn't require stopping down and auto focuses.

    However I don't know if you would benefit from it.

    • Like Like x 2
  3. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Totally agree with Fred. You also get EXIF info on aperture and lens. Personally, I can't really see the point in adapted lenses ... but that's just IMHO!
  4. EarthQuake

    EarthQuake Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 30, 2013
    45/1.8 is a fantastic lens, and its crazy not to buy it for the used prices it sells for these days, in the $200-250 range. I would say it will be better in pretty much every way, except manual focus, old MF lenses always feel better when using MF.
  5. I have both and I've taken about 10 photos with the 50 (on the E-M10) and over 600 with the 45, and I don't use the 45 very often. I do use adapted lenses, but other than for slide duplication, they are mostly a novelty.
  6. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    You cannot beat the small size, autofocus,and quality of a modern lens. The amount of performance benefit will depend on your specific lens. My own OM 50 1.8 is all beaten up and cannot come anywhere close to the 45mm in results. However, I've got other 50's that are quite good, and after PP you couldn't tell w/o the exif.
  7. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    I have an old Leica Summicron f2 50mm from the early 1950's, coated, sharp, with nice color, that I would not give up using on my E-M5 for the world. It renders differently from the 45, and sometimes it is just what I want. Besides the single coating opens up shadows, and in the desert southwest where I live, that can sometimes be important. I finally got the shot I wanted of a wire grave marker with the Summicron, and no other lens quite got there. Now, I had very precise ideas of what I wanted, more so than usually. But I'm glad I had it in my kit. Some of us use adapted lenses because we have known and used them through a life time, and we find they work beautifully for certain things on digital cameras.

    That said, get the 45mm f1.8. The Olympus 50 f1.8 is a nice lens, but the 45mm is a great lens for the system it was made for.
  8. Jfrader

    Jfrader Guest

    +1. A really fine, sharp piece of glass in a compact package. My most used portrait lens.
  9. MajorMagee

    MajorMagee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2011
    Dayton, OH
    I've had that debate once or twice a year for as long as I've had PEN cameras. I've always decided that I was more than happy with my Zuiko 50mm f/1.4, and just saved the money I would have spent on the 45mm to fill some bigger holes in my collection like the M.Zuiko 75mm.
  10. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    Buy a Sigma 60mm 2.8. It's sharper and cheaper than the 45mm 1.8, unless you need the faster aperture.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Chris5107

    Chris5107 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    When I finally bought the 45/1.8 a few years ago, I stopped using adapted 50mm lenses immediately. Only now with the metabones focal reducers have I begun playing with MF again.

    Get the 45. It is cheap and really is a classic m43 lens (small, sharp, light weight, relatively fast, quick to focus).
  12. Uncle Frank

    Uncle Frank Photo Enthusiast

    Jul 26, 2012
    San Jose, CA
    After I bought the Sigma 60, my Oly 45 gathered dust. I ended up gifting it to my son, who is just getting into u4/3. Don't miss it at all.
  13. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Is it really sharper? Or is it just that at f2.8 at typical portrait shooting distances you have more in focus so your images appear sharper? I'm only asking because while I now have the Sigma 60mm I used to own the 45mm and always thought it it was incredibly sharp, even wide open. In fact, in many cases I found that it was too sharp in fact for many portraits.
  14. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    I'm not saying the 45mm isn't sharp, but I've found the Sigma to be far more consistent at various distances versus the 45mm. For example, I find the 45mm to be the weakest shooting wide open at far distances in low contrast areas. The Sigma 60mm on the other hand, is just more consistent for me regardless of distance or lighting conditions.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Zancrow

    Zancrow Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 16, 2014
    Thanks guys, looks like now I will have to do some research on that Sigma 60mm too. :p
  16. ManofKent

    ManofKent Hopefully still learning

    Dec 26, 2014
    Faversham, Kent, UK
    For what it's worth DXO rate the Sigma 60 at 10 for sharpness with the Oly 45 at 9. I say for what it's worth though... Test result figures only tell part of a story - colour rendition, the rendering of out of focus areas, the transition off in-focus to OOF areas etc. don't translate very well into charts. I've not used the Sigma 60, but the samples I've seen are generally more pleasing to my eye than those from the Oly 45 for portraits. I own the 45 and it's an excellent lens but I find it's rendition quite clinical - great for some subjects but not for everything.
  17. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Test quote for Frank
  18. KBeezie

    KBeezie Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 15, 2012
    Grand Rapids, Mi
    Karl Blessing
    I have both actually, and I do agree that the Sigma 60/2.8 DN-A is definitely sharper at 100% crop, but it's also a 120mm equiv (as opposed to 90), and it's 1 and a third stop slower.

    The 45/1.8 beats the sigma in terms of size, weight and extra stop-ish of light, the sigma beats it in sharpness (though I can't tell if there's a difference in the AF speed or if there's a diff in the AF noise/sound, both are pretty quiet to me even with the hearing aids in and being right up next to my head).

    The 45/1.8 has a closer minimum focusing distance, but not by much (19.2" (50 cm) vs 19.7" (50.04 cm)).

    I got my 45/1.8 used for $200, the Sigma 60/2.8 was new at $209.

    I'll probably set up a scene to compare later (since I need to see how sharp the 45/1.8 is @ f/2.8 for a fair comparison to the sigma), but this is a shot off the 60/2.8, of a plant roughly 20-25 feet away from me, and then the picture was simply cropped at 100% rather than resized, so this is the actual 100% view off an E-P3 with the Sigma 60/2.8 shot at f/2.8 1/400 ISO 200.


    Edit: I have a Pentax-M 50/1.4 that I Was using before, but it's been sitting at home as I play with the 45/1.8, as the 45 kind of fills the gap at little better with autofocus and compact size.
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