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Have Panasonic 12-32 f3.5; worth getting 20 or 25mm lens?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by amphibulous, Dec 16, 2015.

  1. amphibulous

    amphibulous Mu-43 Regular

    71
    Dec 16, 2015
    I know about the extra stops (but the pancake zoom is stabilized) and dof isolation (I don't care or the decision would be made!) But is it worth upgrading for the sake of plain old image quality? I always assumed that kit zooms have to be thrown away, but looking at the images from this one and MTF graphs online made my jaw drop. But, good as the lens is, I'd be willing to pay (reasonably) for an even better one. Everyone loves the 20 and 25mm Panasonics, but are they noticeably better than the 12-32??? If so, I'm seriously impressed.

    I'd love feedback from people who have the pancake zoom (the one that usually ships with the GMs) and either of the primes. Or any prime in the 20-30mm range that they consider significantly better.

    (Btw I'm in the UK, so please don't mention the B&H offer on the 25; I already feel bad enough...)
     
  2. budeny

    budeny Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 4, 2014
    Boulder, CO
    IQ of 12-32 is great and zoom range beats prime in my use scenarios. 20mm lens only gets action when f2.0 is required - i.e. very rarely.
     
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  3. Nathanael

    Nathanael Mu-43 Veteran

    391
    Oct 12, 2015
    If you don't want the fast aperture then no need to bother with a prime
     
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  4. Generationfourth

    Generationfourth Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Sep 11, 2015
    the 12-32 came with my GM5 and it's been winning my heart over the past couple of months. I'm a prime guy and I use the 20mm, and 42.5 f/1.7 a lot. Shooting at f/1.7 is a lot of fun when the situation calls for it (low light, astro, subject isolation). I'd look into the 20mm if I were you.

    I think my next lens will be the 35-100 3.5-5.6 brother of the 12-32. Cheap, small, and supposedly great quality like the 12-32. Prior to the 12-32 I rarely shot zooms, especially compact zooms.
     
  5. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    If sharpness is all you're after then I doubt the primes would offer you a significant uplift. However, for low light and shallower DOF .. well, you already know the answer!
     
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  6. amphibulous

    amphibulous Mu-43 Regular

    71
    Dec 16, 2015
    Excellent advice - thanks! My thinking is that when I want dof isolation then the P'sonic 42.5 or Sigma 60mm are the way to go. This will give me a nice two lens system that covers my priorities with minimum bulk.
     
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  7. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I have the 12-32, PL15 and PL25. I wouldn't bother with the latter two except for the fast aperture.
     
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  8. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    12-32mm is a great general purpose lens in terms of sharpness and image quality. Where the primes will shine though (besides shallow DOF) is in stopped down sharpness and how they render light especially when shooting longer exposures.

    Saying that, I have lots of good glass and I still hold the 12-32mm in high regards!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. amphibulous

    amphibulous Mu-43 Regular

    71
    Dec 16, 2015
    Would I be likely to notice a difference at f8 at 1/250?
     
  10. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    No because both will be diffraction limited.
     
  11. amphibulous

    amphibulous Mu-43 Regular

    71
    Dec 16, 2015
    I thought diffraction became limiting *after* (ie when narrower than) f8 on m43? I've just switched to the format; have I got that wrong? Actually, even "limiting" seems too much from my research, which suggested that diffuzzies will *reduce* performance after f8, but that's not the same as limiting it. Eg here is a shot at f20

    High Fidelity Compacts: Small aperture light painting

    ..and if EVERY m43 lens gives this performance and no better, which is what I'd consider a limit to be, that's not much of a limit.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2015
  12. amphibulous

    amphibulous Mu-43 Regular

    71
    Dec 16, 2015
    And there's a test of an m43 lens here:

    Micro 4/3rds Photography: Diffraction

    ..The test jumps from f5.6 to f11, but I don't really a change until f22. If people have been working out where the fuzzies start from diffraction blob sizes rather than shooting tests, well, that presence of Bayer filters and other sensor enhancements makes unlikely to be accurate.
     
  13. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    Probably not, but that's why I said longer exposures. ;)
     
  14. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    Have been looking on eBay for the Panasonic 12-32mm. Very few available from North American sellers. I presume these are grey market lenses. The seller ratings are quite good. I also noticed that most of them are silver and the black ones go for quite a premium. Anything to look out for? Any better places to shop? Thanks.
    --tom
     
  15. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    Watch for kit sales, like the GM5 and the GF7. Costco had the GF7 with the 12-32, 35-100 and a free Lowepro bag and a 32GB card for a great price in October. When Panasonic want to move inventory, they really drop prices. B&H had the GH3 on a great sale a few days ago. Keep an eye out on their web site for some specials.

    Good luck,

    --Ken
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015
  16. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    Ken,

    I'm looking to add this lens to my Olympus E-PM1 setup. Currently have the Olympus 14-42 and the 40-150. Looking for something a little wider and more compact than the 14-42. I'll keep looking.

    Thanks,
    Tom
     
  17. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    I am not sure what used 12-32's go for, but if you compare the price of this lens vs. it in a kit on sale, you can sell off the remainder of the kit and have a brand new 12-32 for almost nothing. The Costco kit I mentioned above was $500. It was cheaper to buy this kit then just buying the two lenses alone.

    Good luck,

    --Ken
     
  18. SojiOkita

    SojiOkita Mu-43 Top Veteran

    617
    Feb 23, 2014
    France
    Most of micro four thirds lenses give their best around f/4.

    I own the 12-32 and P20 and PL25...
    As good as the 20 mm is regarding image quality, I would not bother about the difference with the 12-32 which is already good.

    I think the use of these lenses is different.
    I use my 12-32 mostly for 2 things:
    - point & shoot for family pictures, when I don't want to bother about changing lenses.
    - landscapes

    When I want to do higher quality pictures (portraits, city walks photos, etc...) I take the 20 or the 25.
    Because of the fast aperture, the dof possibilities and the fact that I like the perspective I get with these focal lengths.
    With the 12-32 I end up taking most pictures at 12 and 32 mm...
    However, I wouldn't use my P20 nor PL25 if I was limited to f/4. I think 99% of my pictures with these lenses are taken below f/2.8.

    For me, the extra stops cannot be totally compensated by the stabilization because:
    - the 12-32 stab is not one of the best OIS
    - if you photograph people... you would need shorter exposure time anyway.
    - with a body with IBIS, you can have both;)

    If you don't care about the extra stops & the DOF abilities, then I think the decision is pretty easy to make;)
     
  19. jimr.pdx

    jimr.pdx Mu-43 Veteran

    342
    Dec 5, 2010
    near Longview ~1hr from PDX
    Jim R
    I'm a pretty trusting guy and have only been burned once at the GAS (global auction site) ;) I'm seeing owner-sale 12-32s going for $130ish lately (mine among them, coming soon) and for the reputation that feels like a bargain. I'd definitely worry about a grey-market body but lenses not so much, and the seller is Stateside so I'm feeling fine with my choice.
     
  20. onewheeltom

    onewheeltom Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Nov 18, 2015
    Cary, NC
    Tom Karches
    More concerned about how long it was going to take to ship it. I always look for high reputation.

    I was looking at a 12-32 today on eBay (US seller) for $128, and then it was gone. I had the 12-32 conversation with a friend yesterday and he bought that lens while I was looking at it :)

    I like keeping the camera with me everywhere, I really enjoy shooting wide angle and I mostly shoot outside. I don't really have the budget for a fast wide angle, so that fact that this lens collapses small, is relatively inexpensive and a decent wide angle make it attractive to me.

    I'd buy your 12-32 for $130ish :)

    --tom
     
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