Macro lens choices: OLY 60 or adapted Manual glass

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by scottychop, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. scottychop

    scottychop Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 10, 2012
    Real Name:
    I have been doing a bit of research on Macro lenses recently. I was originally a Nikon shooter with a few old 55 micros. I no longer own them but wish I had one lying around to do a side by side of the new OLY 60. If you had $500 to spend on a macro lens, which avenue would you pursue?

    1. New OLY 60?
    2. Several old manual lenses...
  2. RichardB

    RichardB Snapshooter

    Nov 19, 2012
    Maryland, US
    Real Name:
    I bought a Micro-Nikkor 55mm/3.5 last summer for less than $50. I'd prefer the auto-focusing Oly 60, but for my casual purposes I'd rather have the $450 difference.

    I can't say I'd spend that difference on old manual lenses, though. My eyesight isn't as good as my camera's autofocus. I'm still on the lookout for manual-focus bargains (Nikon E Series! Super Cosina!) as I find them, but my expensive lens purchases are native MFT.

    If you want the highest quality and won't miss the $500, I'd bet the Oly 60 would make you happier than the Micro-Nikkor.
  3. heli-mech

    heli-mech Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 9, 2012
    Vancouver Island, Canada
    Real Name:
    I had a Tokina 90mm 2.5, one of the best manual macros ever and I sold it to get the 60mm. My reasons were this:AF(for general use), smaller size, able to sell my 45mm 1.8 as well to reduce my overall kit size/weight, weather sealed to match the om-d.

    I do miss the extra working distance granted by the 90mm (and external vs internal focus) and the feel of real manual focus but overall I'm happy. I do hope for a 100-150mm native macro in the future though.
  4. pake

    pake Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 14, 2010
    Real Name:
    I've had the Tamron 90mm f/2.5 for ~two years now and I thought it was an amazing macro lens... Until I got the Oly 60mm. I was happy with the Tamron but shooting with the Oly 60mm gives me the WOW-effect quite often.

    I've been editing my ~500 pics from the trip to Australia lately and every now and then there's some shots (whether it's macro/portrait/etc) taken with the 60mm and I can't but admire the image quality. Amazingly sharp and full of detail.

    I paid ~460€ (~US$600) for mine and I couldn't be happier. Totally worth it.

    EDIT: OK, to be honest, I COULD be happier... If it had max. aperture of ~f/1.x and the manual focus feel of the Tamron. :wink:
  5. garfield_cz

    garfield_cz Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 9, 2011
    Czech Republic
    Real Name:
    If you are occasional macro shooter then go with cheap old adapted lens. Otherwise I would suggest native Macro lens, either PL45 or mZD60 would be far better as both are razor sharp and superior in micro-contrast.
  6. McBob

    McBob Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 22, 2012
    I shoot a ton of macro professionally, and have been well-served by the aforementioned Nikon 55/3.5. With $500, I'd probably upgrade to the 55/2.8.

    I'm interested in the Oly 50/f2 4/3 macro, but haven't had the chance to test one yet.
  7. fin azvandi

    fin azvandi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 12, 2011
    South Bend, IN
    +1, that $500 can get you some other glass unless you shoot a lot of macros. I've got the excellent Kiron 105/2.8 and it's quite heavy, but other native glass is higher on my priority list.
  8. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Real Name:
    Just to mention, some folks here have gone with the Olympus 45 and some Kenko extension tubes and have gotten great results. The extension tubes support AF and go for $179 at B&H.
  9. scottychop

    scottychop Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 10, 2012
    Real Name:

    Thanks for all the responses. I am an occasional shooter, but do want really good glass for when I have the time to go out. Macro is my all time favorite way to shoot and what I am best at.

    Is the OLY 45 a macro lens?
  10. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Nope, the m.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8. The Leica 45mm f/2.8 Macro-Elmarit is.

    With extension tubes the m.Zuiko could be used for macro. Personally though, I would rather start off with a dedicated macro then add extension tubes from there to make it better.
    • Like Like x 3
  11. scottychop

    scottychop Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 10, 2012
    Real Name:
  12. Joe_B

    Joe_B Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 4, 2012
    Davis, California

    Over on The GetDPI Photography 4/3rds Cameras - Forum there is thread that looks at this very question.

    Tesselator has written a nice response addressing the pros and cons of using a m4/3 macro lens or other alternate lenses.

    It's post # 9 - lens choices - opinions please - The GetDPI Photography Forums

    If you look around you will see some of Amin Sabet's posts on the GetDPI 4/3's Forums.
  13. scottychop

    scottychop Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 10, 2012
    Real Name:
    Wow. A great read. Sure would be nice to spend money on those top two lenses huh?!
  14. vinay

    vinay Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 18, 2012
    For what it's worth, my old Micro Nikkor 60mm f2.8 AF-D out resolves my 14, 20 and 45(1.8) native primes.