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Need some advice!

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by sebs_color, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    Hey everyone,

    I am looking into buying my first lens here soon. I have had the E-PM2 for a little bit now, and have been messing with it a lot. I am currently living in sicily, and really would like to focus on landscape photography, and just large sceneries that are abundant here.

    any way, I have done research online about which lens to buy, and what kind to buy, but I was really hoping someone could give me their opinion on a lens they think I should buy. after all I am still very new to photography, and the knowledge I have seen shared on this forum is amazing.

    so if someone could help me out here that would be awesome! I am looking to spend around 250-500 max. willing to go used if someone knows about good deals I can get on ebay. again, thank you!
     
  2. DoofClenas

    DoofClenas Who needs a Mirror!

    943
    Nov 9, 2012
    Traverse City, MI
    Clint
    I'm assuming you only have the 14-42 lens?

    I use my 20mm 75% of the time with my epm2...it makes for a very compact combo. Add a gordy's wrist strap and it's jacket pocketable.

    No sure what the used market is like over there, but the 20 and the 45 combo has suited me well. If I need wider, I go with the kit lens, which is pretty good at 14mm. You also might want to consider the 7.5mm fisheye...it's only a couple hundred, and then you have UWA lens if held flat (or defished in post)
     
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  3. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    Thanks for all the info. Your assumption was right, I only have the kit lens. When you say the 20mm, are you referring to the Panasonic 20mm?
     
  4. DoofClenas

    DoofClenas Who needs a Mirror!

    943
    Nov 9, 2012
    Traverse City, MI
    Clint
    Yes the panasonic 20mm, just as an FYI, they make 2 versions of this...the first one less expensive, and equally as good.
     
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  5. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sounds like you are looking for an ultra wide angle lens. Unfortunately, most UWA lenses in the m4/3 range are outside that price range. There are lenses like the O12-50 and P12-32 which are in the price range, but are only somewhat wider than your 14-42. You could also try a wide angle converter that takes your 14-42 to 11mm wide, which was reviewed decently well here: http://www.ephotozine.com/article/olympus-pen-converter-lenses-tested-16886. Frankly though, with the above options I would be (and do, with the O12-50) stitching panoramas in software to get ultra wide views.

    Of course, there are many situations in which you just can't stitch panoramas, or its a PITA. The one option that I would favour personally is the Samyang 7.5mm fisheye, but only if a) you're comfortable with fisheyes, b) can MF (not difficult when the DoF you at hyperfocal is so huge), and c) don't mind doing a little software fisheye correction if you want to reduce or eliminate the fisheye distortion. The Samyang is so sharp that even after correction and cropping the stretched edges, it's still basically as sharp as a P7-14 or O9-18 UWA. There are plenty of examples on this forum on this.
     
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  6. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Sean Rastsmith
    The general advice I give people who are asking this is: Where do you feel limited? Is the wide end of the kit lens not wide enough for your landscapes? Do you want more reach than the long end of the zoom? Do you find yourself shooting a specific focal range often (within a 5mm boundary, aka, 18-23, 37-42, etc)? Do you shoot in low light, or have issues freezing motion? Only you know what parts of the kit lens are limiting you. Once you have figured it out then you know what lens to look at to give you what you want.

    It sounds like either A) the kit lens isn't wide enough for you, or B) you read that landscapes are supposed to be shot using a UWA lens. If A, the only ones that really fit in your budget are either the Samyang/Rokinon/Bower 7.5 fisheye, or trying to adapt a wide angle from another system. I know that there are cine-lenses that have been modified to cover the 4/3 sensor that are at 12mm, and Tokina makes an 11-16 for various systems that you may find used. If it is B), try shooting the landscapes with what you have. You may be surprised at what you get.
     
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  7. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    Thank you so much for all that information. I am going to look into some used models that you mentioned. I really just want to start learning as much as I can before making a serious commitment to lenses above my price range. But I will look into all you wrote. Thanks again for taking the time to write all of that!
     
  8. bikerhiker

    bikerhiker Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 24, 2013
    Canada
    David
    Landscape photography is such a broad scope genre that it's difficult to recommend a lens for you to try out.

    But I know the tendency of a new photographer in regards to landscape photography. They try to include as much as the human eye can see and then mistakenly believe that a wide angle or even an ultra-wide angle lens are used to CRAM every single stuff you see (trees, sky, grass, roots and even wild life) on to the sensor that they make a rather dull or boring set of photos. They are so many things going on in the photo that confuses the viewer. So in this case, I would not recommend shooting with a fisheye or a UWA. I would rather recommend staying with a kit lens -- either a 14-42 or a 12-50 and set them either @ 14mm or @12. At both focal lengths, they are plenty wide enough for the job.

    A wide angle lens creates an effect that anything that close to the lens is expanded and anything that further away from the lens is shrunk (become tiny) and this is the most common problem you see with a lot of wide angle shots. A newbie usually try so hard to cram everything in that make any distance objects like mountains, lakes and wildlife so small that you have so many expanded empty space right in front of the picture; usually that's closer to the camera which then makes for a spectacular effect but boring photo.

    If you want to create an expanded view using a normal wide angle perspective lens like a 28mm or even a 35mm to keep distance objects like mountains at a reasonable perspective size or sizes, you can create a panorama image by stitching several photos together. The software I use is called Microsoft I.C.E and it is free and is easy to use. There should be free software for the Macintosh that does exacty the same.

    This way, you can create incredible montage panoramic photos of your landscape with grandeur, not shrunk or fisheyed in any way that you can normally associate!!

    Have fun!
     
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  9. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    Initially I felt that the wide end could capture more if I had a different lens, but I will definitely continue to use the lens I have and see what I can get. I still have much much to learn, and I really appreciate your input. Thanks again!
     
  10. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    Thank you! I am definitely going to continue shooting with the kit lens and see what I can get my hands after I get more comfortable with using the camera
    Thanks for all that information!
     
  11. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    I have one more question for all you guys. Could someone explain to me what the difference is between the 17mm 1.8 and the 25mm 1.8 Olympus lenses? Or between those and the Panasonic 20mm??

    I understand the different sizes but what are the differences that stick to more experienced people like yourselves? Thanks again!
     
  12. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Sean Rastsmith
    Glad to know you are basing this "second lens question" on your actual feelings of what you believe is lacking (which I understand is hard, especially if you don't have any experience to work with). The difference between the lenses you mentioned is threefold. One is the different focal lengths will produce different angles of view. There are sites out there which will let you see the difference between them. The second is the f-stop, which is used to both control exposure and Depth of Field. The smaller the number, the more light it lets in, and compared to a larger number, allows for a faster shutter speed and less depth of field (but DoF is also a factor of lens focal length). The third is physical size. The P20 is the smallest physically, has the largest aperture (smallest number) out of the three you mentioned and is very sharp. Some people report it being slow to focus, particularly on Olympus bodies. The 17 1.8 has a clutch ring on it, which when pulling it back allows for a more controlled manual focus, along with distance markers visible for people who like to "zone shoot". The Olympus 25 isn't out yet, but Panasonic has a 25mm f1.4. It would allow the most shallow depth of field and the lowest light usage, but is the most expensive new. I would try setting your kit lens at each of the three spots for a bit, and see which one you seem to develop an "eye" for.
     
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  13. sebs_color

    sebs_color Mu-43 Regular

    191
    Jan 5, 2014
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Sebastian
    Can't thank you enough for all this information!