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Buy Rokinon 12mm f2.0, sell other lenses?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by onewheeltom, Dec 10, 2015.

  1. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    I found a good local private sale on a Rokinon 12mm NCS CS f2.0 for $200. It's selling on B&H now for $319. My current setup (which I've had about 6 weeks) is an Oly E-PM1 with the 14-42mm IIR kit lens. I bought the Oly 50-140mm from BestBuy for $99 thinking I would try it and could always return it. Not that crazy about it....does not generally fit my shooting style well. I am going to Wyoming for a week in the summer. Perhaps I would miss having that capability.

    I have one of the $99 Panasonic 25mm f1.7 lenses on order from B&H. Would the Rokinon not being autofocus be a big deal if I just left it on the camera? I really enjoy wide angle...I have a Sigma 10-20mm for my Nikon. I also have the Nikon 35mm f1.8 prime which I really like.

    A new Oly 12/2 is about $650, not sure about used.

    I could also put that money toward a 12-XX zoom of some brand which would give me the zoom capability, albeit with a slower lens.

    Thoughts?
    --tom
     
  2. PakkyT

    PakkyT Mu-43 Top Veteran

    764
    Jun 20, 2015
    New England
    Well I know on my trips and vacations I tend to shoot wide most of the time (trying to capture everything I guess) and in the past I have travelled with the 4/3rds 12-60mm lens but this last summer picked up the Panasonic 12-35mm in order to travel lighter. Both lenses fit my style very nicely. That said, the Panny is a bit pricey and the Oly is a 4/3ds lens, so both may not be what you are looking for. But Panasonic makes a slower version of the lens, the 12-32mm which is f/3.5-5.6 (rather than f/2.8 through the zoom range) and Olympus has the 12-50mm. Both these lenses seem to be often offered up for sale at decent used prices. Of course as I write this neither lens appears to be available in the Buy & Sell forum.

    I think the Rokinon may be fine if you know you love 12mm and learn to use it well. But for vacations, well at least for me, I do like the versatility of a zoom lens when I am constantly on the move and often do not have time to be switching lenses a lot when the rest of my family is walking off in the distance. :) Consider your old Nikon set up. Would you have been happier with the 10-20mm or just a 10mm prime lens when traveling?
     
  3. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I don't think the E-PM1 has good focus aids. It could be kind of miserable.

    For not much more, I bet you could source a 14mm f2.5 with the 11mm WA converter. That might be a nice bargain option for you.

    If you are OK with f3.5, there is a similar 11mm converter for the 14-42 II R zoom, but the 14mm f2.5 is a pancake and faster.
     
  4. Johnny The Greek

    Johnny The Greek Mu-43 Regular

    117
    Aug 19, 2015

    I bought my Oly 12mm for about $500 used on Ebay. These days they're a lot cheaper than they used to be but still not cheap. A friend of mine uses the Rokinon to great effect but only for landscape photography.
     
  5. SVQuant

    SVQuant Mu-43 Top Veteran

    843
    Sep 20, 2015
    SF Bay Area, California, USA
    Sameer
    Tom,

    Sounds like you will have your 35/1.8 equivalent with the 25/1.7. I have been looking at the wide angles and have been playing with the various options. I would agree with the P14/2.5 recommendation if you want to go wide. While that would be on the longer end of your Sigma 10-20 on Nikon, it would certainly make life easier for you. You might also consider getting an adapter for your Sigma and use it on m-4/3 if you like how the lens renders.

    As for the zooms, I would recommend holding on to the O45-150 (or getting it again before then if you return it) for the Wyoming trip. It is a beautiful place for wide angle, but there are those times when you would like the reach. The 45-150 is small and light and produces very nice results outdoors and even indoors if you let the ISO float.

    FWIW, I am saving up to replace my kit zoom with the P12-35/2.8 at some point. For travel, zooms are really convenient (coming from someone who traveled with his 35mm on Nikon for the best part of the last 8 years, though always with a long zoom).

    Hope this helps.
     
  6. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    Here's my personal view:

    I have the Olympus 4/3 11-22/2.8, and as you'd expect, use it most at the wide end (or else why would I have bought it?). The trouble is, people always say that wide angles are easy to manually focus because they have so much depth of field. For me, that makes them much more difficult to focus. With longer lenses it's really easy to see where the focal plane is in order to nail critical focus. With wide angles - especially fast ones - it will look like your image is in focus on the screen or EVF, but when you actually look at it on the computer you'll often find you've missed critical focus, unless you are magnifying every shot.

    I'm sure the Rokinon is nicer to use in that respect than the Olympus, because while the Oly is nominally autofocus, it's so slow on CDAF cameras that I use it MF 90% of the time. But the MF is a very touchy focus-by-wire arrangement with a very short travel. So based on my experience of the Rokinon fisheye which has a strongly damped focus ring, it will probably be better for that.

    All this to say, I can see a real advantage to an autofocus lens for this job. I like fast wide angles a lot, they're addictive. But 12mm is too narrow for me for astrophotography, which is where I would really put that f2 aperture to good use. If I was in your position though, I would probably see about swapping the 14-42 for the 12-32 to get a tiny, usable wide angle lens that also happens to have AF and more versatility.
     
  7. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    Does the P14 really look any wider than on my 14-42mm? Are there any slightly better (but not exponentially more expensive) super wide other than the Oly 9mm body cap lens?

    My understanding is the Sigma 10-20 with the adapter renders like a 20-40? Or is it still just as wide but the image is smaller?

    Once I get the P25/1.7, I'll probably mostly use it rather than the 14-42mm

    --tom
     
  8. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    I used the 10-20 mostly on the 10 side. I've also been considering the Panasonic 12-32mm pancake lens (making it much more pocketable) though the Olympus 12-50mm is another option that adds macro and weather sealing, but is much larger but definitely NOT pocketable. These are both going for between $150 and $200 used. If I'm willing to leave the camera on a sling, the longer length is not that big of a deal. The weather sealing could come in handy, but I don't think I really need the power zoom.

    Pretty sure I'm going to keep the Olympus 40-150mm. I used it this past weekend and it was great for candid shots from a distance.

    --tom
     
  9. SVQuant

    SVQuant Mu-43 Top Veteran

    843
    Sep 20, 2015
    SF Bay Area, California, USA
    Sameer
    In my limited testing, I found the P14/2.8 to be both sharper and brighter than the O14-42II kit lens at 14mm. I think it may come down to the fact that the kit zooms tend to drop off at both ends of the range. For its price, it seemed to be very decent wide-angle improvement to the kit. I have no experience with the BCL, but at f/8, I am guessing that it is limited to daylight shooting. The O12 is definitely the widest fast prime out there right now if you want autofocus. One of my hopes is Olympus will announce a 12/1.2 prime next month and we will see some of these come on the forum at a good price :).

    Regarding lens equivalence, I am guessing that you are coming from APS-C sensor which on Nikon means that your 10-20 lens was the FF equivalent of 15-30 while on the m-4/3 sensor it would be a FF equivalent of 20-40. The corresponding zoom to your 10-20 would be one of the 7-14s (I think I have that right, but someone please correct me if I am wrong). So with an adapter, you would get the long end of the APS-C range on m-4/3m, but not the wide end.
     
  10. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    USA
    I would go with the last option - put that money toward one of the 12-XX zooms :)
     
  11. travelbug

    travelbug Mu-43 Regular

    136
    Oct 20, 2014
    op

    youve probably chosen your lrns by now but ill add in my 2 cents as i use the 12mm/2.0 rokinon on my epm1. in short i love it! it has no distortion (thanks to the crop and the fact that this lens is really meant for apsc), is almost as sharp as my oly 25/1.8, is built well and is easy to focus as long as you map magnify to your record button- this will give you more manual control than any focus peaking or any aid out there and is easy to use.

    the only downsides to the rokinon is that it is relatively large for the epm1 (doesnt affect your shooting though) and its focus scale on the lens isnt adjusted properly, again probably owing to the fact that this lens is really meant for apsc. however, using it you will easily get a feel of where infinity is and what not.

    for travel, id say zooms are more practical in general but bringing a long a wide aperture w-a lens is also a good idea. in my case,its my favorite lens atm. cheers.
     
  12. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    Funny seeing this thread again. In the meantime, I have purchased an E-P5, purchased the 12-32 Panasonic (which I really like) and kept the 40-150 f/4-5.6 zoom (amazing for $100). About to pull the trigger on the 9MM BCL. Will likely just leave the BCL on the E-PM1 and keep it in my bag. Been conflicted about spending a bit more on the wide angle, but realized that these BCL's hold their value quite well and I could get most of my money out of it if I felt like I needed to sell it.
    --tom