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Lens Rentals - mega 42-45mm lens review

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by tkbslc, Mar 7, 2018.

  1. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    • Informative Informative x 11
    • Like Like x 4
  2. coffeecat

    coffeecat Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Aug 4, 2012
    SW England
    I love these blog posts!
    • Agree Agree x 2
  3. SVQuant

    SVQuant Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    SF Bay Area, California, USA
    Thanks for posting. As with the 25mm tests, the quality of all the lenses is pretty impressive. Love the fact that the system has excellent lenses at all price points.
    • Agree Agree x 6
  4. RyanM

    RyanM Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 16, 2017
  5. Finally explains the 45mm f/1.8! It's actually very sharp in the corners, just suffers from field curvature so you have to pick your focus point rather than focus and recomposing. Great for portraits, even off to the side.

    Not sure on the pricing, the Olympus 45mm has always been cheaper normally than the Panasonic 42.5mm in NZ.

    It's also surprising to find such huge sample variation from Panasonic compared to Olympus, everyone always said the opposite.
    • Useful Useful x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  6. WT21

    WT21 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 19, 2010
    An awesome article, and a reason why my next rental (in May) will be with lens rentals. Great site, and not just a gear-vendor.

    If you read the whole article, the difference between the O45/1.8 and P42.5/1.7 makes sense now. Remember, the O45 has a longer MFD. Take into account it's sharp center but field curvature, and you can see it's truly meant as a portrait lens. The P42.5 focuses closer and gives more even results, but perhaps not quite the "pop" for portraits. More of a better all-rounder (assuming you get a good copy -- which I think mine is, as I've been super happy with the output).
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2018
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Useful Useful x 1
  7. Giiba

    Giiba Something to someone somewhere Subscribing Member

    Aug 19, 2016
    New Westminster, BC
    Certainly helps Olympus justify the price of the Pro lens, impressive results.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    I love these tests, Lens Rentals does a good job in their comparisons.
  9. Wisertime

    Wisertime Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2013
    I'm glad you pointed that out. I Focus and recompose most of the time and need to try it using the focus points. Makes sense. The 45 F1.8 is plenty sharp IMO, but this probably explains a lot of perceived "softness" or getting only one (or wrong) eye in focus.
  10. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Very interesting results. It really says that there's not a bad 45-ish lens out there (except for maybe the PL Macro).

    As for the discussion of price of the O45, while it typically sells for less than $400 via various discounts throughout the year, we can't use those sale prices as a benchmark, because they're only temporary. We're forced to use the MSRP of the lens, which is $400.
  11. RyanM

    RyanM Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 16, 2017
    In principle, I agree. It's absolutely worth mentioning that the MSRP is $400 as that's the price you might have to pay if you're in a rush, but it's also worth mentioning that ~50% of the time (over the last 3 years) it's available for $350 or less (usually $300, see link in my post).

    In a more abstract sense, price fluctuations of this kind are very common. At what point does the lower price become the de facto retail price, rather than a "sale"? I'm not sure. 50% of the time, 75% of the time? It depends on how long you're willing to wait. For me, I'm not the sort who goes out and spends a few hundred dollars on photography gear on a whim. I spend (probably way too much) time reading about the lens, specs, reviews, and evaluating whether a particular piece of gear is right for me. And in that context, where I'm considering a lens over a period of weeks or months, there's plenty of time to wait for the "sale" price. And so, for me, $300 is the effective new price of the lens. Though, in this case, I snagged it on cyber monday for $200 :dance3:
  12. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Nov 7, 2010
    Nice to get a basic understanding of why I've always been thrilled by the 45/1.8 (95% shooting portraits) and yet many other folks think of it as more of an OK to good lens.
  13. cptobvious

    cptobvious Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 8, 2013
    I have not seen any field curvature issues with my 45/1.8 at typical landscape apertures (f/4-5.6). I noticed the test was at f/2.8, but to my eye the 45/1.8 gets sharp corner-to-corner above f/4. I am surprised their test found only minor copy variation with the 45/1.8, as my experience with about a half dozen copies I’ve owned/tested was the copy variation was significant.
  14. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    I'm surprised Panasonic still tries to price and market the 45mm macro as a premium lens. Based on my time with it, and this review, it is not worth anywhere near MSRP.

    It's not a bad lens if you can get it used for $350-400, but I feel bad for anyone who paid $900 full retail.
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2018
  15. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    But it's a Leica, and that's gotta be worth something, right?
    • Funny Funny x 1
  16. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    When you read a comparison between cars, do they state the MSRP for the cars, or the price you may be able to pay for the car based on negotiations, rebates, financing, etc.?

    I agree with you that many times throughout the year the lens is less than $400 (I bought mine for $250 back in early January), but at the end of the day you have to compare like vs. like, which in this case is the MSRP of the lens.

    I do agree that it may be worth mentioning that the lens typically is on sale multiple times throughout the year for a significant discount, but for the scope of this testing (i.e. optical performance), price isn't really a factor. Roger simply presents the quantitative data (i.e. optical performance). It's up to the user to discern that qualitatively (i.e. the value of performance : price).
    • Agree Agree x 1
  17. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    I don't think someone writing a lens review should use anything but MSRP, but we, on this forum, don't have to pretend it costs $400. I'd go as far as to say you got duped if you pay that much for it.
    • Agree Agree x 3
  18. RyanM

    RyanM Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 16, 2017
    These are all good points. At the end of the day, it just seemed a bit odd to me that he specifically mentioned that the Panasonic 42.5mm f/1.7 was the cheapest and that he wanted it to do well because it's cheap, even though the Oly 45mm f/1.8 is usually cheaper.
  19. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    That is a bit odd. They have the same MSRP, actually.
  20. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Yes, that is odd. It seems that Roger used the current pricing (there is a $50 discount on the Pana 1.7, and a $200 discount on the Pana 1.2) rather than MSRP, which is what should've been used.

    Comparing MSRP, the O45 & P42.5 are the same ($400), while the 45 PRO comes in at $400 cheaper than the Nocticron ($1200 vs $1600, MSRP).
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