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Need 50mm equivalent for zone-focusing

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by Jamie Furlong, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. Jamie Furlong

    Jamie Furlong New to Mu-43

    Aug 20, 2012
    On a boat
    Hi all,

    I have an OM-D having sold my Canon 5dii. No regrets except I miss my 50mm f/1.4. Not that it had a decent aperture ring but I would like to get a decent 50mm prime and adapter for zone-focused street shooting. I'd love to get the Voigtlander 25mm but it's outside my budget.

    Any tips on what old lenses (OM or other) to look out for? And any adaptor manufacturer I should aim for/avoid? Bear in mind I have no legacy lenses, just my m43 primes (12/14/20/45).

    Thanks in advance
  2. arentol

    arentol Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 29, 2012
    I use my Olympus 20mm f/1.7 for that kind of shooting. Personally I find 40mm (135 equivalent) to be a nice compromise between 35 and 50. Wide enough to add context via the background when needed, narrow enough to make it clear what the focus is meant to be. And of course I can always crop it a bit to bring it closer to 50, but I can't uncrop a 50mm equivalent shot to get to 40mm.

    My narrowest adapted lens is a 50mm, so I can't help you there.
  3. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    I would think that any of the Olympus or Nikkor 24's are going to be adequate and adaptors are super cheap. You could try and find a canon FD 24 1.4L but you may as well get the Nokton for that kind of money.

    If it were me? I'd save/sell and get the Nokton. That's the lens you really want and it's what you'll keep comparing every adapted lens to.

  4. MAubrey

    MAubrey Photographer

    Jul 9, 2012
    Bellingham, WA
    Mike Aubrey
    Legacy wide lenses don't do well in the corners for μ43. The details are all smeared. If you can handle that, then go for it. It's doable, you just need to be more aware of your framing. And be aware that it'll be worse for a 24mm than for a 35mm or 40mm.

    Corner crops from a wide angle lenses compared to native lenses:

    Here's a shot of mine from a Voigtlander 35mm (70mm equivalent) f/2.5 pancake. You can see the corners stretched:
  5. Jamie Furlong

    Jamie Furlong New to Mu-43

    Aug 20, 2012
    On a boat
    Hmmm, some useful examples and thoughts there, thank you.

    I thought for starters I'd go for a Canon FD 24mm f/2.8. Even with the adapter it's much cheaper than the Voigtlander (I've spent so much on my camera system recently I won't be able to afford that for another two years). I've never had a problem with not going below f/2.8 because of the high ISO capability these days. In street most of my work gets converted to b+w (so noise can become grain with a bit of pp) and it is possible to get away with those stretched corners. I'm not looking for beautiful pin-sharp portraits, I just like the 50mm equivalent focal length. I have the 20mm Panny and sometimes find it a bit too wide for 'normal' (I have proper wide if need be).

    If it turns out bad I only lost £100 in the experiment, most of which I'll make back by selling again, but I've had a look at some of the results with this set up on the OM-D and they look pretty good to me.

    BTW, I'm fairly new to this forum but I'm impressed with the comprehensive responses. Thank you, it's really appreciated.
  6. With my old E-PL1 and 20/1.7 I would prefocus to the approximate distance where I expected to release the shutter. Now with the E-M5 and 25/1.4 I just use the touchscreen AF which means I can use larger apertures and lower ISOs and still have reliable focusing.

    Amongst manual focus lenses I did use the Canon FDn 24/2.8 quite frequently but not anymore. It was a decently sharp lens.
  7. Hingo

    Hingo Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 31, 2012
    how is the distortion on the canon 24mm 2.8 fd lens?, I can find some reviews about the lens, but no test that show the sharpness of it at 2.8 and the distortion, especially for m43 camera.

    I'm looking for a cheap lens in the 50mm fov, so I'm ready to give this lens a change
  8. fin azvandi

    fin azvandi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 12, 2011
    South Bend, IN
    Like you I felt that the Lumix 20mm was a little too wide - I played around with the Vivitar 28mm f/2.8 Close Focus (manufactured by Komine) and found it to be a wonderful lens. You can find it in multiple mounts. (Of course, I then went on to sell both and get the PL 25/1.4...so maybe your wallet won't be happy if you follow my example!)
  9. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Legacy not that bad

    MAubrey post got me curious ...

    I tested the Nikon Nikkor 28mm F2.8 against the Nokton 25mm F0.95 @ F2.8 using a USAF 1951 test pattern placed in the upper left corner of the FOV.

    The Nikkor

    The Nokton

    I think not so bad and the contrast transfer function of the Nikkor is ~16% higher than the Nokton on the group 0 line set.

    I suppose we could start a 'my legacy is better than yours' thread but I'll pass. Always best to just get a lens as see how it works - lensreantals? Given the possibility of unit variation even renting could be a hit/miss proposition.
  10. I don't recall distortion being a problem, but I didn't specifically test for it. I still have the lens at home so I can pop it on and check.
  11. mr_botak

    mr_botak Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 4, 2011
    Reading, UK
    I find the OM 2.8/24 very useable, even at f2.8. It is also nice and light. Here's a sample handheld at f2.8:

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