Looking for new wide angle best iq group portrait prime

Discussion in 'This or That? (MFT only)' started by pix530, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. pix530

    pix530 Mu-43 Regular

    72
    Oct 2, 2013
    BC/WA
    Need wide angle prime for ocasitional indoor shooting of group and single portraits indoor.

    Price is 2nd. Great IQ is most important.
    Most shootings with remote ttl flash or manual strobes.

    Looking for something in between 12 to 18mm.
     
  2. SpecFoto

    SpecFoto Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    424
    Aug 28, 2012
    So Cal
    Jim
    I shoot portraits a lot with my primes and I have been waiting for the same lens for quite a while.:(

    My 17mm f1.8 is better at distances, rather than close up. I have been mostly using my Oly 12-40mm f2.8 Pro zoom when I need that FL range, as it is pretty sharp across the frame. I am looking at the new Sigma 16mm f1.4 but waiting for some reviews before giving it a try. At $450 US it is not much of a gamble, and I have been happy with the Sigma DC DN 30mm f1.4 I purchased earlier this year. Was looking at the Oly 17mm f1.2, but at $1,200 I will pass on it.

    Using a 12mm lens will result in some distortion on facial features for people not lined up on focal plane. You can correct with post processing, but using a longer focal length will help eliminate this.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017
  3. ionian

    ionian Mu-43 Top Veteran

    989
    May 20, 2016
    Kent, UK
    Simon
    I rely on my 12-40 as well. The image quality is as good as most primes and the flexibility of the zoom is great. If you are using strobes, f2.8 is more than sufficient for light.

    The two primes I have in that wide range - the PL15 and CV17.5 - have great image quality but the difference between the zooms and primes is not huge, and the primes have their own compromises. Usually when shooting groups I'm looking to get the shots quickly to keep everyone's attention and I don't want to faff around too much.
     
  4. pix530

    pix530 Mu-43 Regular

    72
    Oct 2, 2013
    BC/WA
    I had 12-40. Iq was good for zoom. But not great. Yes it was convenient.

    My ex pana 25/1.4 gave me much better results but I am looking for wider.

    If I can find similar iq in wide range that would be a great hit.

    17/1.2 Probably works. But I ask myself if I want to have so much weight with me, pro lenses are not too heavy. But when I add 3 of them plus zoom plus body it become an issue.
    Price is not friendly too taking in consideration i prefer much longer lens for what I enjoy to do.
     
  5. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    PL12? PL15?

    BTW the 12-40 is best at 12mm, as you zoom out it gets progressively worse so comparing it at 25mm isn't really going to tell you a lot about it's wide angle performance.
     
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  6. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    wide angle for groups I can sort of understand... but portraits?

    If you are shooting with strobes or flash for group shots you are not going to shoot wide open to get reasonable DOF, so actually most lenses.. probably even the cheapest kit lens will deliver satisfactory results

    It wont be the lens that the limiting factor.. more the lighting.

    and anyway... what do you mean by IQ?....

    Anyway if you insist on a recommendation then look at the Panasonic/Leica 15mm. I hear only good things about it... probably the best your money can buy

    K
     
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  7. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    Not sure what you mean by "focal plane." AFIK that usually refers to the plane of the sensor.

    "Distortion" here is really "perspective distortion" (Perspective distortion (photography) - Wikipedia) and in the case of groups using a wide angle will increase the difference in distance between the person in the center of the group and the people at the ends. The people at the ends would be significantly farther away, hence appear smaller.

    I suppose in theory you could arrange the group in a semicircle with the camera at the center. Then everyone would be subject to the same amount of perspective distortion/would have the same big noses. (It would also put everyone in focus.) I've not heard of anyone trying this. Probably it is not practical in most situations.
     
  8. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Ian
    If speed is paramount, then the PanaLeica 12mm f/1.4 is the way to go.

    The PanaLeica 15mm f/1.7 is also another great option if 12mm is too wide or too expensive.
     
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  9. pix530

    pix530 Mu-43 Regular

    72
    Oct 2, 2013
    BC/WA
    IQ = image quality

    Thank you very much everyone for recommendations. I have enough information to make a decision.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. dirtdevil

    dirtdevil Mu-43 Veteran

    348
    Apr 9, 2017
    I always thought it was a very bad idea to shoot portraits with a wide angle lens because if deforms the face. For objects, we don't have the same reaction because we are not "programmed" to see something weird about the shapes, but for a human face, we tend to see something "alienish" on a face with distortion.

    I guess it's ok if the person is far away and not below 5 meters/15 feet away from your camera.
     
  11. dirtdevil

    dirtdevil Mu-43 Veteran

    348
    Apr 9, 2017
    I've had good results with the 25 1.4 but you need to make sure you have enough space behind you to be able to take a group shot.
     
  12. saladin

    saladin Mu-43 Top Veteran

    964
    May 29, 2015
    jason
    PL15 is a great little lens.

    The new Sigma 16mm might be worth looking at too.
     
  13. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    I am well aware of what IQ stands for.... I just have a personal pet peeve on the use of the phrase as a lazy shorthand.

    I don't think anybody actually makes bad lenses these days, and while you obviously get better performance the more you pay for a lens, I am not convinced that a vast majority of photographers will actually notice the difference, and almost certainly the audience for the photographs have no interest in how the image has been produced

    Just my way of thinking

    K
     
  14. dwig

    dwig Mu-43 Top Veteran

    687
    Jun 26, 2010
    Key West FL
    Arranging the group in an arc can help with some of the issues but will not fix all.

    There is a type of radial distortion that occurs when the image plane is flat. This "eggs out" the shapes near the edges and especially the corners. When shooting groups with wider lenses this can be rather pronounced. The only partial fix, other than using a longer lens, is to arrange the group so that the rear rows are shorter than the front (keeps heads away from the extreme corners) and, when practical, avoiding having anyone who is overweight near the ends of the rows as the distortion will make them appear wider.

    The m4/3 system specifies that lenses be "image-space telecentric". This reduces (nearly eliminates) the issues of sensor based color fringing and reduces vignetting to a very large degree. Many other of the better lenses designed specifically with digital imaging in mind employ this same design concept to a large degree.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  15. Cagey75

    Cagey75 Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Nov 16, 2017
    OP is referring to the line or plane of focus in the scene, for example a group of people split into 2-3 rows, the 'plane of focus' might have the people in the front row in focus but the row behind may be out of focus if you are using a wide aperture. Ideally you wouldn't be though, for large groups of people you want to be shooting between F/5.6 - F/8

    The 15mm 1.7 is ideal for groups, it's akin to a 30mm on FF and that is plenty good enough for this purpose. It'll do a good job for solo , full body portraits too, not so much close in head shots. You want a 25mm for that really.
     
  16. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    Except that the "plane" is, I think, an arc of constant distance from the lens.
     
  17. Repp

    Repp Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 27, 2011
    Oak Harbor, WA
    It's fun for creative shots. Get low and it can make a person seam like a giant or lengthen out a woman's legs. I've seen some really cool uses for it. It's all about perspective and correct placement, just do a google search for wide angle portraits, you'll get some cool examples. If you want a prime lens, as others mentioned currently your best bet is the Pany 12/1.4, though you could go with even wider options like the Laowa 7.5/2.0 or Samyang 7.5FE. I'd also say the Oly 7-14/2.8 and Pany 8-18/2.8-4 could also serve you fairly well.
     
  18. You must have a faulty copy, mine is fantastic at all focal lengths.
     
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  19. Repp

    Repp Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 27, 2011
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Both the Pany and Oly 2.8 zooms are fantastic, but all zooms have some compromises. In the case of the Oly 12-40, it looses sharpness as you go from 12 to 40. Not to say it's bad at 40mm by any stretch, it's still really good, but it is better at 12. Here is the chart from E-photozine's review.
    12mm on left, 40 or right

    330-Olympus1240mmMTF12mm_1397552249. 330-Olympus1240mmMTF40mm_1397552253.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017 at 2:48 PM