Another Help thread... Fast and Wide?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by TNcasual, Jan 8, 2016.

  1. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    You all have been very helpful in my lens purchases. So I thought I would ask again.

    I am looking at months in the future for this purchase. I have my 14-150 II to cover my everyday lens/hiking/eliminate lens swapping. I then have a cadre of legacy glass, the widest being 19mm 3.8. My next purchase I would like it to be a fast, wide lens. Something that I have nothing of, and no experience with.

    Mainly I would be using it for architecture, nature, landscape shots. My Flickr link shows what I normally shoot. But a wide, fast lens may let me expand to new subjects.

    What do you think? What is a good option?

    Here are a few in my mind:

    Oly 12mm - pricy
    Panny 14mm - ?
    Samyang fisheye - fisheye
    Oly 8mm -pricy & fisheye
    Oly 17mm - maybe not wide enough
    Voightlander 10.5 - pricy, manual focus
    Samyang 12 - manual focus, ?

    Oly 12-40 - pricy, big
    Oly 9-18 - not fast
    Oly 7-14 - really pricy
    Panny 7-14 - pricy and not really fast

    Last edited: Jan 8, 2016
  2. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    I think the fisheye is its own category. Really wide, and although some owners defish them routinely, it is difficult work in my opinion. I hate doing that when I also have the 9-18 zoom. It's also easier to stitch a panaroma than to defish.

    For fast and wide, it looks to me like there is only the 12mm's.

    The Panasonic 14mm is not that fast at f2.5 and not that wide, but it's inexpensive and small. I used mine with a .76X converter which made it 11mm. That was OK for my needs, and it's about the same as the 9-18 at 11mm.
  3. MoonMind

    MoonMind Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Oct 25, 2014
    One lens is missing from the list: the Panasonic/Leica 15mm f/1.7 - quite bright, really sharp, gorgous lens, albeit rather pricey, but I think it would fit the bill almost ideally. That being said, when I went for a wide-angle lens, there wasn't any real alternative to the Olympus 12mm available (in terms of native lenses, that is) - and it still is a very good lens. I will admit that or me, it had more or less become a speciality item - because I also own the 12-40mm. In fact, I had hardly used the 12mm for a long time after getting the zoom. However, I'm actually shooting with the 12mm for a project this month, and it turns out to be quite a nice performer with impressive usability - I'm pretty sure that it's a lens a lot of people will be very, very happy with, and I'm now considering keeping it.

    As a side note, I also own the Samyang 7.5mm fish-eye - but it's not that bright at f/3.5, even though it's another nice lens in all other respects. I'd not consider it for the purpose of general photography (I concur with HarryS above regarding this).

    All in all, I can recommend one lens in particular, and that's actually the 12-40mm - optically compelling, versatile, sturdy, and a very nice match for my E-M10 (I prefer using it with an additional grip, though). If the 15mm is wide enough for you, you probably can't do any better, but the Olympus 12mm is a strong contender, too.

    • Agree Agree x 2
  4. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    How wide do you need to go?
  5. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    Handheld or tripod? Architecture, landscape, I do not expect for wide open shots.

    So, why fast exactly? Not a criticism, I wonder if you may have a few different things in mind that could be better served with two lenses.

    Right now I like the Samyang, even defished is extremely wide.

    Then you have these:

    Showcase - SLR Magic HyperPrime CINE 12mm T1.6
    Showcase - Samyang/Rokinon 12mm f/2 (you had this one already).
  6. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    I guess I should think
    All the way! :biggrin:

    I don't know. Really I think I am looking for something with better quality, and different FOV then the 14-150. Something for me to expand into. 14 is the widest that I have, so I was thinking wider would be nice. I have decent legacy glass to cover most everything 19mm and up.
  7. Yong

    Yong Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 25, 2014
    Then there's only a single choice : Olympus 7-14mm.
    Other than that won't exactly fit to your wants. Faster but (arguably) not wider enough than 14mm(Olympus 12mm), Wider but not fast(Panasonic 7-14mm, Olympus 9-18mm).

    Or just wait and see if new appropriate wide angle lens comes. That's my case actually.:)
  8. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    Yeah I agree, might as go ultrawide if you have the 14-150. The 12mm is slightly wider but not significantly enough. I'd be leaning towards a 7-14mm F4 (that's what I've been looking at myself), gets you ultrawide at a more affordable price than 7-14mm F2.8 . It's also smaller, and with a IBIS you might be able to get away with slower shutter speeds than usual.

    Could also consider the 9-18mm, if you want cheaper and want to use filters
    or the kowa 8.5mm, but it's not cheap

    Also can consider speed boosted UWA from other brands, but I don't have much experience with this.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. gr6825

    gr6825 Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 10, 2012
    Is there any way you can rent or borrow a wide angle lens? I ask because wide angle is very difficult - in my opinion. I see a lot of boring ultra-wide shots online. The wider you go, the more difficult it can be to fill the frame with interesting details. The corners can also be difficult due to perspective distortion and keystoning, etc. So I only say this to add some caution to your process. Wide and fast is a tough ask for any format. The best options are "full frame."
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  10. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    When the time comes to make a decision, renting first would be a great idea.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    Sounds like the Oly 7-14 is the only one that hits all your criteria...

    Why does it need to be fast, though?
  12. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator; Photon Wrangler Subscribing Member

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Don't forget the Kowa 8.5mm, f2.8 iirc, expensive.
  13. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    "fast and wide" for "architecture, nature, landscape shots". How wide? "All the way!".

    I think you need to start refining your ideas of what you want to shoot and what would be best for shooting it. There's really only one fast and all the way wide option out there and that's the Oly 8mm fisheye. I have it. It can be a spectacular lens but unless you're going to be routinely defishing it then it's not what you want for most architecture, nature and landscape shots.

    Not quite so wide is the Oly 7-14mm F/2-8. It's the fastest of the not quite so wide as a fisheye and doesn't need to be defished lenses but it isn't all that fast. It's more than fast enough in good light but in low light you're going to be into long exposures or high ISO. Long exposures wouldn't be a problem with a lot of landscape and architecture shots if you don't have moving people and animals in them. High ISO is a problem if you want low noise and as extended a dynamic range as you can get.

    Then we get slower and wider with the other 2 native zooms, the Pana 7-14 and the Oly 9-18 before getting faster with the Oly 12mm. After that we're probably into the not wide enough range if you really want all the way, and even the 12mm may not be wide enough for you if you want that.

    The simple fact is that most people associate "fast" with f/2 or better and if you want wider than 12mm there's only one lens that meets that requirement and it's a fisheye which means it's not a good choice if it's going to be the only lens you have for your stated purposes unless you start doing a lot of defishing. We don't really have a fast and wide rectilinear lens. If you want a rectilinear lens that's as wide as you can currently go and as fast as you can currently get, then the Oly 7-14 is the lens that best fits your criteria and it is expensive. The P 7-14 is slower and cheaper and in good light it shouldn't be a problem. Ditto for the Oly 9018 which isn't quite as wide. Those are the choices but you are going to have to compromise on the fast or the wide or on both if you want to avoid expensive glass and get rectilinear rendering. If you aren't going to go for the fisheye, then the Oly 7-14 is probably the best of the 3 ultra-wide zooms but they're all good lenses and I think you're fine being guided by budget and whether you want 7mm or can settle for 9mm if cost is going to come into it.

    For what it's worth, something wider than 12mm wouldn't be my first choice for a wide angle for landscape and nature. You're likely to start getting a lot of wasted space in the foreground unless you can get fairly close to your subject and if you can get close enough to avoid the empty foreground problem it's just as easy to shoot from a bit further back with a lens that isn't quite as wide. People tend to think of ultra-wide angles when they start thinking about capturing really wide vistas but a lot of the time their best option for getting what they want to capture is a not so wide lens and a stitched panorama because foregrounds tend to be a problem with ultra-wides if there's no interesting feature in the foreground and everything you're interested in is in the distance.
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  14. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Fast and wide is not for landscape or architecture unless you're focus stacking on a tripod, in which case you don't really need a fast lens anyway. In m4/3 land the only thing that would truly count is the manual Voigtlander 10.5mm f/0.95 Nokton but that really isn't great for architecture or landscape...
    • Like Like x 1
  15. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    This is why I ask long before I will be ready to purchase. Thank you for all of the suggestions. I will have to think more about what I want.
  16. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    Amen on panoramas. I think people get intimidated by all the talk of nodal points and all the expensive hardware sold for panos. The truth is that all that claptrap is only necessary for panos with close objects in the foreground and only then if the object is near a stitching point. I have lots of panos shot freehand, just holding the camera and pivoting my body for three or four overlapping shots. I have not tried multirow panos this way, though, but it seems like those should work OK too.

    Here's a one-row example shot with no regard to nodal point, special hardware, etc. I did have the camera on a tripod due to the late hour/low light:

    If you want to explore panos there's no reason you can't do it at 40mm. It won't cost you a penny. For one-row panos, architecture especially, you will eventually want a wider lens because the vertical angle of view is established by whatever lens you are using. But for now, the 40mm will let you experiment.

    For the picture above, IIRC I used a 45mm Oly because our overlook point was a bit of a distance from the palace. So you don't always have to use a wide lens for panos.
    • Like Like x 1
  17. SojiOkita

    SojiOkita Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 23, 2014
    You get very different images with a stiched panorama and a wide angle pictures.
    The perspective is different.
    There're both great, each one for different subjects.
    • Agree Agree x 1
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  18. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    I'm quite sure you do not: if you shoot from the same location, as in this case, the perspective is the same.
  19. SojiOkita

    SojiOkita Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 23, 2014
    Most times, stitches panorama use a cylindrical or equirectangular projection.
    Other projections (fisheye, rectilinear) are possible but it's a lot harder to get something correct from it.
    Wtih a wide angle lens, you get a rectilinear projection.

    I'm maybe using "perspective" in a wrong way, but what I meant is that the different projections will give you a very different sense of perspective on the final picture.
    • Agree Agree x 2
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  20. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    Sure you could stitch a panorama into a rectalinear (sp?) image, but it's much harder to frame and compose it. Think about a wide angle shot with a strong foreground element and receding distant background.
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