Lens Choice - Oly 45 1.8 / P 42.5 1.7 --- Plus P20 1.7 / P25 1.7

Discussion in 'This or That? (MFT only)' started by thehomeofDob, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. thehomeofDob

    thehomeofDob New to Mu-43

    Jun 18, 2017
    Hey guys,

    I recently purchased a GX80 with the 35-100mm 4.0-5.6 and 12-32 kit lens. I've been having a lot of fun figuring it out and learning more about photography. I've been noticing though that a lot of the time when indoors the camera wants to jump the ISO up to get a well balanced image. I have it capped at 3200, but even on a bright sunny day outside its looking for those higher ISO or slower shutters to get a good image.

    I've been looking at some lower aperture primes and would like some help. I'll start with what I shoot (though I'm totally new to photography).

    • Kids - 4 month old and a 9 year old.
    • Vacations - We take a yearly sun holiday, but this year we'll be taking a trip the US which will include NY, DC, Niagra falls. Museums, landscapes, family shots in the city.
    • Family gatherings - My brother-in-laws wedding is next week, kids communions, etc.
    • I have a one time road trip across the US coming up this year too.
    • I would like to begin to shoot some wildlife, and some landscapes (mountains generally).
    So, I have planned to have the 12-32 as a regular walk about lens to keep things small so I will be more likely to keep the camera with me at all times.

    For our vacations and such I'm going to pick up the 14-140mm for use in the day time, and then I'd like to have one faster prime available for indoors or evening shots.

    So down to the prime selection.

    From reading I think I would be happy with 2 of the listed lenses in the title. I'm just not sure.

    I'd like to pick up at least one of them locally for my brother-in-laws wedding.

    Local prices for the Oly 45 is €329, for the P 42.5 is €399.
    For the 20 1.7 €299 and the 25 1.7 €129 (with rebate).

    I can pick them up cheaper if I buy from the UK, but I can't wait for one of them.

    The Oly is smaller and cheaper, but doesn't make use of the dual stabilization. It has a metric tonne of examples in the showcase thread.
    The P42.5 is a bit larger, but has the dual IS. It's more expensive. It doesn't have as many samples in the showcase.

    The 20 1.7 suffers from slow auto focus (not good for kids), but its smaller and is slightly wider giving a bigger difference between the two primes I'm thinking about.
    The 25 1.7 is larger, but significantly cheaper. Unlike the 20mm it doesn't have anywhere near the same amount of samples. Auto focus seems to be faster.

    So, yeah it was a wall of text, thank you for getting this far. If I'm way off with my suggestions please let me know, but I think the combi of 14-140, 12-32, 35-100, 42.5/45, 20/25 would do me for most situations indoors and outdoors, with lots or low light. I also don't want to break the bank, and these options are relatively inexpensive.

    thanks guys ! :)
  2. Mike Wingate

    Mike Wingate Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 21, 2017
    Mike Wingate
    I went a similar route. The 14-140 has replaced the 2 kit lenses. I have a 100-300 for wildlife. I have an OL60 for mainly macro shots. But would like a fast 15 or 17mm for interior of churches and other old buildings. Plus an evening walk around lens. I am looking at the P15mm, but it is expensive.
  3. ionian

    ionian Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 20, 2016
    Kent, UK
    At that price, the Panasonic 25mm strikes me as a no brainier for your low light lens that can do a bit of everything.

    If you are thinking about the 14-140, you may find the 35-100 is no longer useful for you (and maybe even the 12-32,but that does have a size advantage).

    You can't go wrong with either of the portrait lenses - but if you buy the 25mm first it will give you an idea of what you want or need next. Stabilisation on this sort of lens is nice but likely to be unnecessary unless you are photographing a very still black cat in a cave.

    I sound like a huge hypocrite saying this, but don't feel like you have to buy it all now. Buy the most useful and see where it leads you. I'd suggest that's the 25mm.
    • Agree Agree x 2
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  4. Christop82

    Christop82 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 10, 2016
    Looks like your on the right track. The only advice I could offer is to sell one of the kit lenses. You have a lot of redundancy between the three. On the primes, add the Sigma lenses to your consideration. They are stellar for their cost. When looking at the 25mm, if you're wanting low light ability, you may want to check out the P25 1.4, or the Sigma 30 1.4.
  5. JamesD172

    JamesD172 Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 18, 2016
    James Dolezal
    Regarding the portrait lenses -
    I've owned both, and the sizes are for all intents and purposes identical. The P42.5 feels better built because of its thin metal shell. It also focuses significantly closer for almost macro-level work. My copy was notably sharper than the Oly, in the center and certainly in the edges of the frame. But people love both, and I'm sure you would be happy with either. Price being equal, I'd definitely recommend the P42.5. But €70 isn't trivial, and only you can know if those differences would be worth it to you.

    Regarding the normal prime -
    If you plan on taking photos of your kids with the normal prime, the AF speed on the P20 may frustrate you. I don't know because I haven't owned one, though. 25mm fight feel a little too tight if this is going to be your widest prime. If you think you can live with the slow AF, I'd probably recommend the P20 for the extra width. Alternatively, if you save money on the portrait lens by getting the Oly, could you stretch your budget for the even-wider Oly 17 f1.8? I'd choose that focal length over 20mm or 25mm as a general-use prime.
  6. Mattyh

    Mattyh Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 14, 2013
    Panasonic 25mm f1.7 all day long, then pair it with the Sigma DN 60mm f2.8.
    You will then have two quality, fast prime lenses that's actually cheaper then the Panny 42.5mm on its own.
    Check out the Sigma 60mm showcase it is a very highly regard lens and one that I will never sell.
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  7. JamesD172

    JamesD172 Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 18, 2016
    James Dolezal
    Great recommendation.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. rloewy

    rloewy Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    May 5, 2014
    I have the P25, P42.5 and S60 - I find that the P25 is the one I use most - so this would be the one I would start with.

    Between the P42.5 and the S60 - it is really up to use, I find the 42.5mm FOV more useful to me than the 60mm - when I force myself to use the Sigma I always marvel at how sharp it is - but I just do not jell well with that FOV.
  9. Mattyh

    Mattyh Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 14, 2013
    To be honest I find the 60mm fov perfect for candid shots of kids, pets and street scenes,
    My reasoning behind my choice was with 25mm & 60mm there is a clear definition between focal lengths, where between 25mm and 42.5mm can be achieved by moving a few steps forward, plus the money to be saved is also a bonus.
  10. rloewy

    rloewy Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    May 5, 2014
    As I said - it is based on use. I do not have pre-arranged portrait shots - most of my use is hiking/travelling (where a zoom is what I prefer), or street/street event shootings - and for these, I find the 60 just too long
  11. Mattyh

    Mattyh Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 14, 2013
    Isn't it great we have so much choice with this format, it's the main reason for me sticking with m4/3.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  12. thehomeofDob

    thehomeofDob New to Mu-43

    Jun 18, 2017
    Thanks for all the responses.

    So yeah I don't plan on buying all at once, I really just wanted to get one of the primes for the upcoming wedding. The 14-140 will be in a few months time before we head away.

    I think for now I'll go with the P25, as it's going for a great price. The 1.4 is out of my budget for now.

    Thanks for the other suggestions, I'll be sure to check out the sigma 60 in the showcase thread.
    • Like Like x 2
  13. thehomeofDob

    thehomeofDob New to Mu-43

    Jun 18, 2017
    I picked up the 25mm yesterday. Got the last one in the store. It's definitely a sizable lens compared to the two kit lenses, I'm happy with it for the low low price :) I'll give it a test run at the wedding and see what I can make of it. Thanks for your suggestions again guys! :) I'm happy to know I'm on the right route.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. stw

    stw Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 23, 2013
    Cool, enjoy! I got that 25mm when it was on sale for $99USD and have been most pleased with it. I wish I'd had my camera (with that lens) when my son was born. I had a P&S for his first year and missed many good opportunities. The 25mm can be a touch long for indoor use, but not annoyingly so, like the 42.5/45 lenses.

    That said, I love my O45mm. The 42.5 was not available when I got the 45, but would definitely consider it if I were looking today.

    As others have said, this is a great system with so many good options. You will enjoy the 14-140; it is my go to lens when I am outside and have no idea what I might want to shoot. Have fun!
  15. sammykhalifa

    sammykhalifa Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 22, 2012
    Pittsburgh PA
    Sounds like fun! I have both the 20 and 25, and while I like both of them, I take the 25 "walkin' around." The 20 has still made more of my "favorite" shots though. I don't use it much any more though, should get rid of it but can't let go.
  16. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    The 20 is also one of just a few lenses that does not support AFF or AFC, only AFS and manual modes. I'd add the PL15 f/1.7 and the O17 f/1.8 to your list. I prefer the wider view of 20mm and wider over the 25mm-30mm range on m4/3.
  17. 2112

    2112 Mu-43 All-Pro

    I have the 45mm 1.8 and just picked up the Panny 25mm 1.7 from B&H for $147 shipped and couldn't be happier. Its sharp, light, fast focusing, silent and low price.
  18. DynaSport

    DynaSport Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 5, 2013
    I have the 14-140 and it is easily my most used lens. I also have the PL25 and O45. I use the PL25 a good bit more than the 45, so I think you were correct to get the 25 first. Many times I have left the house with just the PL25 and 14-140 and felt well covered.