Best telephoto zoom lens for Olympus om-d e-m5

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by gtyank, Sep 20, 2012.

  1. gtyank

    gtyank Mu-43 Rookie

    Sep 20, 2012
    I'm new to this forum and also m43 cameras. I just bought the Olympus omd and also the panny 14mm (cheap on ebay) and the panny 20mm. I'm looking to buy a telephoto zoom lens, but confused by the number of options. I'm looking for something with great image quality to use for long distance scenery, zoom in on certain areas of large European churches or kid's sporting games. I would mostly use it for the long end of the zoom but still want good quality for wide shots if I need to take pictures quickly before I could switch back to the 20mm. I would prefer 300 to $600 range but could go up to a thousand if they are that much better. Any thoughts on IQ for the lenses listed below? Other option is the Canon 70-300mm on ebay and get an adapter (will have to MF). Thank you!!

    Panny 45-200mm
    Panny 45-175mm
    Panny 45-150mm
    Olympus 40-150mm
    Olympus 75-300mm
    Panny 100-300mm
    Olympus 14-150mm
    Panny 14-140mm
  2. tdekany

    tdekany Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 8, 2011
    I am no expert, but I'd go for either the Panny or Oly 300mm zooms.
  3. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    My pick would be 45-175 for the E-M5. The 45-200 and 100-300 are both good, but they're a tad soft at the long end. The 45-175 is sharp end-to-end. I have no experience with the Olympus 40-150, but I'm not too fond of the plastic lens mount. The 45-175 is build solid and is a fixed length doesn't retract, keeping it very compact. The nano coating also seems to give it a nice saturation, similar to other nano coated lenses I've used (mostly N coated Nikons).
  4. Chrisnmn

    Chrisnmn Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 26, 2012
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Real Name:
    i dont own all of them, just the Pana 100-300 and i love it. heres my first shoot with it if that help you out.

    i was in between the Oly 75-300 and Pana 100-300 but if money was not an issue at the time id had the Oly (just from images ive saw through the forum from other users).

    but it seems that till now those two are the best telephotos for m43. (but im no one to say that)
  5. yekimrd

    yekimrd Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 14, 2012
    Cincinnati, OH
    Real Name:
    I'd say if you're on a budget and don't need the full reach, I agree that the 45-175mm on the OM-D is the best one out there. If you need the reach, I don't think you'll go wrong with either the Panny 100-300 (bulkier, heavier, but cheaper) or Oly 75-300 (smaller, lighter, slower, more expensive). Both long telephotos have equivalent IQ in real world use but the Oly is marginally better. I personally owned the Oly 75-300 and was very sad that I had to sell it. You can see sample images on my image thread

    The 45-200 is very good but there have been reports of poor quality control with variable lens IQ between copies. The Oly 45-150 is better than the 45-200 but has a plastic bayonet. You may also want to wait around until the 45-150 Panny comes out. The super telezooms are great all-around lenses but very soft at the long end.

    Hope this helps. And I apologize if some may redundant with other posts.
  6. gtyank

    gtyank Mu-43 Rookie

    Sep 20, 2012
    Thank you everyone for your advice! I really appreciate it. I found some software to analyze my old pictures in regards to focal lengths. Will pick up lightroom soon but this was something else for now.

    After analyzing my pictures, I tend to shoot mostly ultra wide and then between 90-170 with a few in the 200 range and then the rest around 400. I think I'll probably go for the panny 45-175mm but might wait for the reviews on the panny 45-150 to come out first to be safe. I’m picking up the panny 7-14 so I don’t think the wife would let me get the Oly 75-300mm just right now, and we have a trip coming up soon. I would like to, since that would be a great option too. I also don’t want to be too lacking in the low-med telephoto range. Thanks again!!
  7. Choices

    I own the Pany 45-175 and am really pleased with its performance. I also have the Pany 100-300 and it is good, a lot slower on focusing than the 45-175 but that should be expected. If the reach of the shorter lens is enough then no question. Both produce excellant images. Hope this helps a little.
  8. jsusilo

    jsusilo Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 28, 2012
    Here are reviews of Panasonic 45-150 mm f/4-5.6

    Review Panasonic 45-150 mm 4.0-5.6 (M-43)

    Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm f/4.0-5.6 Lens Review

    "If you wish to choose between a Panasonic 45-175 mm and a 45-150 mm Panasonic, you do not have to worry about the image quality. The image quality of these two lenses is almost the same, despite a clearly different design. In terms of sharpness and ghosting, the Panasonic 45-150 mm is slightly better; in terms of chromatic aberration and vignetting, the roles are reversed. These are no differences to worry about. When you like to make video recordings, choose the Panasonic 45-175 mm power zoom. If not? Choose the smaller, lighter, and cheaper Panasonic 45-150 mm."
  9. Luke

    Luke Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 30, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
    Real Name:
    the Panasonic 45-200 is now dirt cheap and I've never seen any issues with mine. Pixel peepers may say otherwise, but I just don;t see it. And I absolutely LOVE my Panasonic 100-300. It's the ONLY reason I haven't been able to fully leave the m43 system universe. To be able to have that reach, that good at that price is quite ridiculous. Period. If you have those 2 and your 2 primes, you are done.
  10. Art

    Art Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    This quote is quite deceptive. 45-175X should actually be smaller in use than 45-150mm due to internal zooming. Also filter thread 46mm vs 52mm. Furthermore, 50mm eq. additional zoom power is quite a bonus too.

    To the OP, IMO Panny 45-175mm is currently the best telephoto zoom in the entire m43 lineup by a mile. It's sharp at all fcoal lengths but perharps even more importantly it renders superb prime-like colors and contrast. I haven not used Panny 100-300mm. The weight and size of it would be a deal breaker for me and for most m43 users so the quality might be irrelevant as it'll likely stay home most of the time. 100-300 is a highly specialized lens, IMO vs much more versatile 45-175 (daylight portraits, telephoto, video, lightweight easy to carry, etc.).
  11. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    My ideal long zoom would be for Panasonic to do what they did with the 45-175 and apply that to the 100-300! If they made the long end a tad shorter at 100-275mm, but made it fixed length, internal zoom, nano-coated and super sharp end-to-end, that would be awesome!

    Seriously, the 45-175 is the only variable aperture budget telezoom that actually is sharp at the long end. Not many lenses can claim that kind of performance unless we're talking big budget glass. Even the Nikon 200-400 f/4 VR which is touted as one of the best zooms of it's class...isn't that sharp at 400mm!

    Both the 45-200 and 100-300 are great lenses, but they just don't get peak performance at the long end. You do need to throttle the zoom a bit before the long end. If you can do that, both lenses are excellent. Personally for me, I want my glass to be sharp at all focal lengths and not have to consciously think about it every time I'm shooting.

    I shot a couple of these at higher ISOs (1600-3200) in shaded areas at a park. The E-M5 and 45-175 did quite well:
  12. gtyank

    gtyank Mu-43 Rookie

    Sep 20, 2012
    I was orig thinking of the 45-200mm when i heard it was weak on the long end. That is when I posted my question and got a number of responses for the 45-175 for good IQ over the whole focal length and at the long end, which is key. Some votes for the 40-150 for IQ in relation to price. Other votes for panny 100-300 and oly 75-300, which I like but I also need the 100-200mm equiv range. So that is how I ended up deciding on the 45-175mm.