Have P20 (love it), want to get PL25...good idea or bad?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by LowriderS10, Feb 3, 2015.

  1. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    Hello everyone,

    A while ago, after much debate I chose to buy the Pan 20 (instead of the Pan-Leica 25). No regrets, absolutely love this lens.

    However...I'm GAS'ing pretty bad and I really want to get the PL25, for no other reason than because it's been a long time since I've owned a lens that fast and I really like the photos I see coming out of that lens. There's something very unique about the way it renders.

    Would I regret having both in my stable? (I don't think I'd ever get rid of my P20, I really like having a tiny lens that's blazing fast).

  2. bigboysdad

    bigboysdad Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 25, 2013
    Sydney/ London
    Put simply, no, I don't think you will regret it, I certainly haven't. Go for it.
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  3. Darren Bonner

    Darren Bonner Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 1, 2013
    Poole UK
    I did have both for a while and used the P20 more for some reason, probably because I had it on a smaller camera that was jacket pocketable even though I bought the PL25 to replace it and the PL25 sometimes did it magic. I ended up selling the P20 to fund the PL15, though I have no regrets about it, I do have fleeting thought about getting the P20 again for the GM5, but I think I will stick with the PL15 for that one.
    Get the PL25 and see how you get on with both.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. DynaSport

    DynaSport Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 5, 2013
    How would you decide which to use? They seem pretty similar to me. I have the PL25 and would only get the P20 if I wanted to pair it with a really small body like the GM1/5 for a small carry around. Otherwise, I don't know when I would use it over the PL25.
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  5. owczi

    owczi nareteV 34-uM Subscribing Member

    While I have not owned the 20mm, I tried the 20mm in shops and I have the 25mm and I'd say both are the types of lenses that tend to stick to the body and stay on it for a good while. The tiny bit of extra FOV on the 20mm and its size may make a difference for some street photographers or with tiny bodies. I like the results coming out of my 25mm and there's the extra aperture - I'm not getting the 20mm. Frankly, unless you're really in love with the results the 25mm produces or have some other "romantic" reason, stay with the 20mm. Maybe get the PL15 instead.

    But if it's GAS it's GAS... get it, try it and you can always return it. You probably won't :)
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  6. DoofClenas

    DoofClenas Who needs a Mirror! Subscribing Member

    Nov 9, 2012
    Traverse City, MI
    I own both and love them both equally, but for different reason.

    20 is small and compact, especially on my epm2...they were made for each other
    25 is great when the lights dim down low, or I want that shallow DOF look.

    Both are sharp as a tack.

    I started with the 20, then about 2 years later added the 25. The 25 spends it's days on the em1, rarely does it play with the epm2.
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  7. Vivalo

    Vivalo Olympus loser Subscribing Member

    Nov 16, 2010
    I made the switch from P20 to PL25. It is a wonderful lens and gives you almost the FF look. But it doesn't balance well with the smallest camera bodies like E-PM1. I prefer more 17mm FOV so later I got also the 17mm 1.8 as my general purpose prime, but I would never sell the PL25mm, it is so nice.
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  8. xxjorelxx

    xxjorelxx Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 11, 2012
    MD, USA
    I started off with a P20 and then got a PL25. After having both for a few months, I found that I rarely used P20 anymore since it was so close in range to the 25mm. I dont regret having both lenses but I did end up giving the P20 to my brother so that someone else could enjoy it and now he loves it. I'd say go for it if you have the funds and see how it works out for you. If you like one more than the other, then sell it and put the funds towards another fast lens that would be more useful like the PL15 or the O45 (if you dont already have them).
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  9. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 12, 2012
    This is my fav conundrum :)
    I've had 3 p20 and 3 pl25 ;)
    my conclusion is; get both. They are NOT the same. I miss p20 ability to give context to a scene. And that size is awesome .
    As soon i get some money left I will surely buy that gem back!
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    If you can afford it, why not?
    25mm does have a lot going for it in comparison - wider aperture, longer focal length , fast focusing , and subjectively , nice "look".
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Jermonic

    Jermonic Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2012
    P20 has severe banding-problems with the Olympus bodies, but aside from that, it's a goddamn lovely lens. :)

    P25 doesn't have these problems however.
  12. Rudy

    Rudy Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 24, 2013
    Oakland, CA
    While I'm not denying that banding is an issue for some people, it is not universal.
    I have two copies of the P20 and have been using them for years on four different Olympus bodies (EPM-2, EP5 & 2* EM-5) and have never seen any banding.
    There are currently 1467 "keepers" in my Lightroom catalog that came form that lens, which translates to at least 4000 shots taken.

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  13. DynaSport

    DynaSport Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 5, 2013
    Isn't the banding just on high ISOs? So, if you don't go high ISO you many not see it? I am going from memory of what I have read here, I don't have the P20 and use a G5 anyway.
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  14. ManofKent

    ManofKent Hopefully still learning

    Dec 26, 2014
    Faversham, Kent, UK
    I've got the 20 and whilst technically it's a nice lens I keep getting drawn to the 25 because of it's 'character'. I find the 20mm a tad wide for a standard lens (grown up with 50's on 35mm) and a bit 'boring' in the way it renders. Objectively the 20 is a great lens but subjectively I find it a bit dull.
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  15. scott2hot

    scott2hot Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 27, 2012
    west yorkshire
    Owned both many times..the 20 is a stunning lens for size output and FOV it cant be beat!..i only ever saw banding twice on all my oly's ep5..em5...em10...might be a little overstated...yes before anyone chimes in...autofocus slower...Big deal!
    Although 25mm has some real magic and shots sparkle with richness...i didn't like the size and look of the fat bulbous lens on my small cams...But i still feel a draw to 20mm every time i look at my best images.
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  16. Wisertime

    Wisertime Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2013
    This has got to be the most asked/thread started question on this site. Plenty of debate and bed time reading on here about that topic. Fwiw I have the PL25. Love it, but not my favorite FL. Had the 20 but rarely used it. Solid lens, but just not a popular FL. Certainly prefer the smaller size. Can't go wrong with either. Different needs and priorities.
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  17. Ramsey

    Ramsey Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 9, 2013
    Zagreb, Croatia
    one of, it not THE most debated decision on this forum.

    Size and sharpness go in favor of the P20, while AF speed, "leica feel" and f1.4 go in favor of the P25. Frankly, i've never noticed that leica feel :blush:.

    I don't know if there is a situation where i would keep both, even if i had the money. I mean, what's the point? I can decide which one i like/use more, and carry it on me all the time. Those 5-10% shots would not be worth it. Just my $0.02
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  18. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 12, 2012
    For the same reason that people have 14 2.5 and 17 1.8 in their bag.
  19. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    Thanks so much for the advice, everyone, I really appreciate it!

    It's true, it's an often-discussed conundrum! The main reason I was thinking of getting it is because I can get it in Japan for cheap enough brand new to break even if I decide to sell it in Canada (after using/trying it).

    Truth be told, if I have to choose ONE lens between the two (as I have in the past) then the 20 for sure. It's smaller, lighter, has almost as fast an aperture, and I love pancakes (both the lenses and the breakfast food).

    Basically the way I was going to use it is if I just go bumming around town with a single prime, slap that on instead of the 20. There really is no good reason for me to get it, which is why I'm wondering if there's much point to it haha. I like playing with new lenses, especially when I have nothing to lose financially.

    Anyways...thank you for the advice and your personal experiences, I really appreciate them, and please keep them coming! I still haven't made up my mind one way or another!
    • Like Like x 1
  20. tanngrisnir3

    tanngrisnir3 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 18, 2011
    The 25mm is simply one of the best lenses I've ever used, in all respects.

    I had the 20, used it a lot, and sold it because of the unbelievably poor low light focusing.
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