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EM-5 OM-D Body only or body plus 12-50 lens?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by MacBook, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. MacBook

    MacBook Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Jul 24, 2010
    South Carolina
    Are most people pre-ordering just the body rather than body plus the 12-50 lens? Is $300 for the lens (in the kit) worth it if one already has Olympus and Panasonic lenses that cover the range, although not weather-resistant?
  2. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Seems like a very personal decision. For me, the 12-50 is too big to be interesting. If I have to mount a lens that big, I'd rather have the 14-150. Then again, weather sealing is totally unimportant to me.
  3. starlabs

    starlabs Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 30, 2010
    Los Angeles
    It's a tough call. I have pre-ordered the black body, but am now considering whether to amend it with the 12-50. $300 extra ain't cheap...

    So far the best information I could find on the lens is Pekka Potka's excellent blog. Here are his two hands-on entries about the lens (pay particular note to the second one, it's very informative):
    pekkapotka - Journal - Olympus M.Zuiko 12-50mm*1:3.5-6.3
    pekkapotka - Journal - Olympus M.Zuiko 12-50mm f/3.5-6.3 in*comparison

    From his experience, it looks like the 12-50 is approximately on-par with the standard kit lens in terms of sharpness (although to me it looks slightly worse than the kit - lens sample variation perhaps?).

    The 12-50 is definitely long, but then again it has a longer useful focal length range and a faux macro mode (and of course, it's weather-sealed). It would be more of a no-brainer if the lens was as sharp as say, the Panasonic 14-45, but that doesn't look like that's the case unfortunately.

    One thing for sure, the Zuiko 12-60mm is freakin' amazing...
  4. jambaj0e

    jambaj0e Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 31, 2010
    If I were in the market (depending on the GH3), I'd buy body only + the MM3 so I can mount my Olympus 4/3 Zuiko 14-54mm mkII lens. I can then start saving up for the Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8 X lens and/or the Olympus 75mm f1.8 prime =D
  5. FastCorner

    FastCorner Mu-43 Veteran

    May 28, 2011
    I'd like to see the specs for two X zoom lenses from Panasonic before deciding on an Olympus kit order. If they really are weather proof, they'd be a lot more interesting than the 12-50.
  6. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    For me I would just use half of that $300 to buy a weather sealed MMF-3 Four-Thirds Mount Adapter, then I'd have my weather sealed kit complete. But if you don't have any High Grade Zuiko lenses then it's a tough call. Personally, I would save the $300, still pick up an MMF-3, and save the remaining $130 to put towards a Zuiko 14-54mm II.
  7. Linh

    Linh Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Apr 14, 2009
    Maryland, US
    12-50 is too slow on the long end for my taste, and weather sealing isn't a priority for me. I'll save that $300 for either the 75/1.8 or 35-100. Basically whichever comes first assuming it's reasonable in price.
  8. nueces snapper

    nueces snapper Mu-43 All-Pro

    Say Ned, Let me ask you ... seeing as how you have a lot of experience with 4/3 and obviously own some lenses: What is focus like using legacy glass on the newer m4/3 bodies? Do the big teles eat up the battery in a hurry?

    What if say, a guy won the lottery and dropped 7k on the 300mm? Would that monster work, AF, on an EP3 or the new OM?

    Let me add: Do you think Oly will ever build M4/3 prime telephotos?

    Thanks in advance. :smile:
  9. bongestrella

    bongestrella Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 2, 2011
    Mechanicsburg, PA
    Is the Zuiko 14-54mm II weather sealed? Also, how does it focus with the pens?
  10. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Yes, it is weather sealed. All Zuiko High Grade and Super High Grade lenses are weather sealed.

    As far as AF, it all depends on what you're comparing to. The Mark II version is CDAF-optimized so it works better than most lenses like it on the PEN system, but it is still not great. It is literally the fastest focusing fast zoom available for the Micro Four-Thirds system currently, as its only competition are other Four-Thirds lenses... until the new Lumix X f/2.8 lenses become a reality. Naturally, it's not as fast focusing as smaller CDAF enabled lenses like say the Zuiko 25mm f/2.8.
  11. pkincy

    pkincy New to Mu-43

    Dec 20, 2011
    Del Mar, Ca
    My preorder was for the body only and in silver because the lens I am looking for is the 45 mm f1.8.

    The zoom seems big and slow and I generally have my X100 with me for a shorter prime.

  12. DDBazooka

    DDBazooka Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 3, 2011
    Can't you just sell the 12-50 and get the body for $100-$150 cheaper?
  13. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    For the 300mm, I would stick mainly with manual focus. That is a large lens and difficult for a CDAF system to operate. With my Four-Thirds lenses (with the exception of the 25mm/2.8, which is small and operates just like a native lens) I generally use AF for those times when I'm simply lazy or can't see well enough to manually focus. Otherwise, manual focus tends to be just as quick, or even quicker if I use the VF-2. Honestly, the #1 reason I currently continue to use Four-Thirds is simply because of lens selection and quality. No other system I know of has so many beautiful, high-resolving lenses, and the :43: lineup is still incomplete. Now that the OM-D is out, I now have another reason to hold onto them - weather sealing. Even if I were to get say weather sealed Pentax lenses, they wouldn't have the weather sealed adapter for the OM-D. So Four-Thirds will be the only option until the :43: lens linup grows.

    I have found the SWD lenses to be a little faster to AF than non-SWD lenses which are not CDAF-optimized, but they are still quite slow. I have not noticed any significant power draw from the lenses at all. However, I bet if the camera could better power the big lenses that AF would be much faster. You can notice the difference on an SWD lens just by adding a battery grip to your E-3 or E-5. The extra power makes the AF faster. The E-3, E-30, and E-5 are made for that extra push on SWD lenses, but the PENs are pushing less power than even the entry-level DSLRs. The OM-D will have more power, however.

    In regards to Olympus making telephoto primes for the native :43: mount, my answer is a definite yes! They have made it quite clear that they intend to complete the lineup of fixed focal length lenses as their first priority, and they have even acknowledged that they will build long lenses "like say, 300mm" (Kirk Tuck asked that question directly not too long ago). The announcement of a 75mm f/1.8 and 60mm f/2.8 Macro is a start, and physically shows that they are moving upwards...
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Linh

    Linh Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Apr 14, 2009
    Maryland, US
    I suspect it might be a bit harder to actually sell. Is there big demand for this lens?
  15. RDM

    RDM Mu-43 All-Pro

    yea if you expect to get a near retail price for it.
    I would pay 300 for it if someone wanted to buy the OM-D with it as a kit and sell me the lens, but I doubt that would happen.

    So Ned do you think Olympus will stop production of 4/3 lenses and bodies all together, soon or as soon as their µ4/3 lens line up is completed ?
  16. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    I think that's Olympus suicide. They really need to leverage those 4/3rd lenses somehow with M43. Such good glass would go to waste.
  17. drizek

    drizek Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 5, 2011
    It's not Olympus suicide, it's Panasonic fratricide. Panasonic only cares about u43, and Olympus can't afford to maintain full 4/3 on its own.

    Edit: If I end up preordering the OMD, I will get the 12-50. I have no interest in getting a dedicated wide angle lens, so I would consider this to be a cheaper alternative to the 12mm or the 9-18mm. I also enjoy doing macro photography and there are currently no real options for m43 that are affordable, so this fills that niche as well.

    When I want a compact camera that I can fit in my pocket, I use the 20mm. Any other lens is too big for that and has to be on my neck anyway, so I don't really care how big it is. I notice no difference between the the kit lens, the 45mm and the 40-150mm in actual use. Besides, the 12-50 isn't even that much bigger than the kit lens, the only difference is that it doesn't collapse.
  18. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    A lot of excellent four-third telephoto lenses can be had for cheap. They can kill the DSLRs, but they should save the lenses at the very least!
  19. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Unfortunately, if they kill the DSLRs they have to stop production of the lenses for that mount. It'll then become a dead mount.

    That doesn't mean that your lenses will stop working (on 4/3 or m4/3 bodies), or that you won't be able to get more used ones or leftover stock, however! You can continue using that excellent glass on the OM-D or whatever similar system pops up.

    I could see that as a very real possibility, but not for a very long time. They said they will continue the traditional Four-Thirds system as long as DSLRs are needed. Looking at the OM-D with 3D tracking focus and high-grade EVF... what's holding it back now but the lenses? The lens lineup is a big hold-back though, so we should have plenty of time to think about it. :) 
  20. Fred49

    Fred49 Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 24, 2010

    I already own

    EP2 +VF2
    and in order of use :
    20mm 45mm 14-150mm 12mm
    and collecting dust 14-42mk1

    no 4/3 lens

    Only interest for me in the 12-50 due to its mediocre sharpness and its bulk,is to take photos i wouldnt take without a weathersealed lens+body.

    This lens could cost 1-1,5k€, i would buy it in an heartbeat if it were in the same league as the 4/3 12-60.

    Still hesitating , i could buy it and resell it after my 2 week hike/wild camping in Scotland for i hope a moderate loss, this would permit me to bring EM-5+20mm+12-50mm instead of 12mm+20mm+45mm.
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