I'm jonesing for a 25mm..... Oly/1.8 vs Pany/1.4 opinions??????

aidanw

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I had both PL25 and Oly25 on an E-M5. I kept the PL after seeing the photos and being more convinced by the colour rendition. And to be honest, owning a faux-Leica lens of sorts was an attraction.

Fast-forward 6 months later, and I'm going back to the Oly25. Why? Well, small-size and great primes are why I love m43. The PL25, while beautiful and it indeed takes lovely photos, does two things badly: It's big; and the purple fringing - although fixable in Lightroom - is prevalent in most contrast edges wide-open.

The Oly was smaller, had a slightly wider angle of view, the bokeh was similar (as in 'average', nothing like bigger L glass on Canon), and generally fits my m43 idea of portable, sharp and fast. I can shoot wide open and it doesn't make me think I might as well be carrying a bigger camera.

I also have a Canon FF camera - if I didn't have that maybe I would be more interested in keeping the PL25.
For the record, the background defocusing of the PL25 is nowhere near close to FF, so losing 1/3 of a stop to the Oly is small fry in the scheme of it.
 

Jermonic

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Still, the P25 is able to provide a bit of extra bokeh that the O25 doesn't seem to have have, and that's why I find many O25 photos pretty flat and disinteresting. There is a bit of difference, in my opion, that warrants the P25 over the O25. I don't see them as totally equal. Maybe it's the rendering and transition from in-focus to de-focused. The contrast? I'm not sure.

Maybe I need to have my hands on the O25 and try for myself. After all, that's a wiser way to make a final decision. Although (without lens rentals as a possibility) it's an expensive one :)
 

jrsilva

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I keep not understanding the meaning when someone says a lens is "clinical" or "sterile"...
I do see and understand that some lenses have differences in bokeh and out of focus render, or difference in colors between similar focal range lens, but what makes a lens be considered "clinical" or "sterile"?
 

Jermonic

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I didn't use those words. It's just my experience from seeing lots of photos from both lenses. They're different in what results they can gather.
 

jrsilva

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I didn't use those words. It's just my experience from seeing lots of photos from both lenses. They're different in what results they can gather.
Sure, but I'm not talking about P20, PL25 or Oly25 specifically, but lens in general.
I've seen those words used were in the forums to describe the character of some lens.
 

tkbslc

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Sure, but I'm not talking about P20, PL25 or Oly25 specifically, but lens in general.
I've seen those words used were in the forums to describe the character of some lens.
I think when people say "clinical" it just means the lens does everything well. That's what most people want when they read lens reviews. It's sharp corner to corner, it has no notable optical issues, bokeh is smooth. Basically it just takes the scene and reproduces is perfectly.

Some people frame that into a bad thing, somehow, by implying that it makes boring photos to reproduce the scene so faithfully. It makes it less "Art" and more copy machine, maybe. I don't know if I fully buy it.
 

jrsilva

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I think when people say "clinical" it just means the lens does everything well. That's what most people want when they read lens reviews. It's sharp corner to corner, it has no notable optical issues, bokeh is smooth. Basically it just takes the scene and reproduces is perfectly.

Some people frame that into a bad thing, somehow, by implying that it makes boring photos to reproduce the scene so faithfully. It makes it less "Art" and more copy machine, maybe. I don't know if I fully buy it.
Thank's for your explanation on the meaning of what is a "clinical" lens ;)
I was not sure if it is a good thing or a bad thing.
 

techsplorer

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I think when people say "clinical" it just means the lens does everything well. That's what most people want when they read lens reviews. It's sharp corner to corner, it has no notable optical issues, bokeh is smooth. Basically it just takes the scene and reproduces is perfectly.

Some people frame that into a bad thing, somehow, by implying that it makes boring photos to reproduce the scene so faithfully. It makes it less "Art" and more copy machine, maybe. I don't know if I fully buy it.
Great explanation. The word "clinical" itself can mean "efficient and un-emotional, coldly detached"

some people feel that a "clinical" lens does mostly everything it's expected to do well, but is nothing special, not necessarily bad, but not outstanding either. Some regard this as boring.

When applied to describe an inanimate object like a lens, this should really be a positive. Cameras and lenses are tools. As long as the tool is doing its job and working well, the user is responsible for producing something boring or not...
 

stripedrex

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Wow great description of 'clinical'. In some cases clinical almost seems overly digital or so technically perfect it loses that soft organic feel some lenses have. I'm a fan of both but find I lean more towards clinical. My favorite lens in my lineup in terms of rendering is my Sony FE 55mm F1.8 Zeiss. It's the most clinical lens in my stable and I wish I had more lenses like it!

I have also have the p25 and I find that rendering more 'organic'. It's far less critically sharp and the micro contrast is not in the same league as the full frame 55 I have in that regard. I do wish it was smaller for when I have my m43 kit so I just got the o25 which is looking at people's photos really does look more 'clinical' =). I have a feeling it's mostly because the Panasonic can be kind of soft wide open and the Olympus 'seems' sharper open at 1.8? I'm guessing I'm not the only one that most of the time shoot wide open with m43.

Pic of my son with the Sony FE 55mm f1.8:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/ageslani/18438750968/in/album-72157651942806014/

Pic of my son with the Panasonic 25mm F1.4:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/ageslani/16474870676/in/album-72157648437332783/

I know composition etc is totally different but from a lens perspective if I swapped I think the feel overall would still be the Sony Zeiss is more clinical and the Panasonic Leica is more organic.

Maybe I'm crazy ... =)
 

fransglans

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for me clinical vs "organic" is mostly about the character of the oof areas. and the transitions in between. for example. pl25 and o25. pl25 has that swirly bokeh stuff and also more creamy look. that to me is more appealing than the moderate and more "clinical" rendering from o25.
 

JDK504

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We now have another 25 1.7 to think about lol. They should have made this new lens in the style of the Nocticron or 15mm, but kept it at 1.4 or faster. I'd love to have the metal and aperature ring visible although I'm using my EM5 II and it won't be functional. Anyone think this is a waste from Panasonic? I know they are trying to under cut Olympus's 25, but seems like a waste of resources when they could have made the already great 25 1.4 even greater or made a whole new lens entirely???
 

Egregius V

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Haha! I wouldn't have guessed that their next lens would be another nifty-fifty equivalent. I sooner expected a 17 or perhaps an ultrawide prime. Now I'm trying to understand Panasonic's thinking. Do they need a new 25mm video lens, and is f/1.7 fast enough for that? (I suppose not.) Or do they just want to offer a cheaper (and who knows - sharper?) complement to their new DFD-ready 42.5-45mm lenses while offering the 100-400 to properly compete with the Oly. PRO super-teles? (My guess.)
 

A1short

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I have the Olympus 25/1.8 but bought and returned 3 copies as all were slightly out of alignment....
I'd just be careful that the lens you get is sharp across the frame. Most people don't care about this, but it's wort doing a test when you get the lens first, I think.
 
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