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New To MFT - Lens Collection Question

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by bobbywise, Aug 24, 2011.

  1. bobbywise

    bobbywise Mu-43 Regular

    130
    Aug 23, 2011
    Nantes, France
    Hi everyone,

    First off, what a great forum. I'm learning so much reading through all the different posts. I'll explain my situation, then follow in with my questions :smile:

    I pretty much an absolute beginner. I originally had a Canon 400D, and more recently I got myself a Canon 550D and have a small collection of lenses for that DSLR.

    Over the last few months I "stumbled" across the MFT format, I started to learn what's out there (cameras, lenses and adaptors) in terms of the MFT format. I concluded I wanted something compact with great results, and the MFT format seemed to be perfect for that need.

    After initially being "put off" by the "cons" mentioned in some of the Panasonic Panasonic GF3 reviews (e.g. no EVF option for example), I had my mind set on getting the Olympus EP3. But after continually waiting for the EP3 to come out, the price difference between the EP3 and GF3, and some reviews reporting "bad high ISO" performance of the EP3, I U-turned on my original decision and went for the Panasonic GF3 14 mm / 14-42 mm Kit. In fact I would have been happy with only the Panasonic GF3 14 mm Kit, but it was not available before my holiday, so I took the plunge on the slightly more expensive twin lens kit just to get the GF3 in time before my holiday.

    First off, I'm very impressed with the 14mm/2.5 lens, so I know I'll never get rid of that lens. My plan is to stick to using the MFT format, so I want to invest in some decent lenses.

    I have also recently ordered the Panasonic Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F4.0-5.6 ASPH MEGA OIS Lens as it seems a reasonably good performer for the price, and has more range than the more expensive (although better performing) Panasonic H-VS014140 Lumix G Vario HD 14-140mm F4.0-5.8 ASPH Mega OIS lens). I know this telephoto may be a bit awkward to use on the "compact" GF3, but I'll also use it in a future on a "larger" G3 or GF3 (when it comes out), or whatever I decide to complement my "compact" GF3.

    Now I've described my situation, now on to my Lens Collection questions:

    1. Panasonic 20mm/1.7 or Panasonic 25mm/1.4 or both ?
    I see how everyone rates the 20mm/1.7, some even saying how it's the reason to be on the MTF format. However, I'm tempted to just go for the recently released (but bigger) 25mm/1.4. Knowing that I'm happy with my wider (and slightly smaller) 14 mm/2.5, will I regret not having the 20mm/1.7 if I decide to only go for the Panasonic 25mm/1.4 ? Also, knowing how good the 20mm/1.7mm is, maybe I should aim to get both ?

    2. Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm/2.8 or the recent Oly 45mm/1.8 ?
    I would definitely only get one or the other. It's looking like the Oly 45mm/1.8 at the moment, but should stick with the (presumably cheaper and reasonable performing) Panasonic 45mm/2.8 ?

    3. How does the more expensive Panasonic 14-140mm F4.0-5.8 ASPH Mega OIS lens compare with the Panasonic Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F4.0-5.6 ASPH MEGA OIS Lens ?

    Although I don't plan on getting the Panasonic 14-140mm F4.0-5.8, if many people tell me it's a great lens, then it may sway my future purchasing decision when I decide to one day go for say a G3 or GH3 (if this lens gets bundled with these in the future -- it's currently bundled with the GH2 for example).

    4. How does the Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH Lens compare to a
    Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM ?


    I have the Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM for my 550D, and I love this lens. It was on my 550D 95% of the time during my week vacation in New York at the start of this year. However, on my recent summer vacation in Spain, I hardly took my 550D out with me and relied mainly on the GF3 14mm/2.5 combo, which generally was great. However, I regretted not having the 550D 10-22mm combo with me when in Valencia and wanting that extra wide shot. Would it be worth while investing in the 7-14mm/4 Panasonic for the GF3 ? I know it has great reviews, but with the slightly smaller sensor on the MFT format, will the 7mm on the MFT format be as wide (or wider) than 10mm on the 550 APS-C sensor ?

    I look forward to all your opinions to my questions above :big grin:

    With Well Wishes,

    Rob
     
  2. scarbrd

    scarbrd Mu-43 Regular

    144
    Jul 1, 2011
    Houston, TX
    On the Panasonic 20mm 1.7 vs the Leica 25mm 1.4, I have the 20mm currently, but have ordered the 25mm. I plan on selling the 20mm as I see no need for both.

    The only reason I can see is if you like the pancake style of the 20mm at times. Other that that, I think it's redundant.

    I struggled too with the 45s. I was really hoping that the Olympus would be a macro. Needing a macro and a portrait length fixed focal length, I just picked up the Leica 45. It's a little slower, but the dual purpose won out for me. Note: the Leica 45mm is much more expensive than the Olympus, not cheaper as you mentioned, but it is a macro lens as well.

    I can't help you on the others, except to say you should check out the Olympus 9-18 for the wide angle zoom. Much smaller and half the price of the Panasonic. At that level, 7mm is noticeably wider than 9mm, but not enough to matter for me. Plus, the Panasonic has a curved front lens making using filters a problem.

    Good luck and welcome to m4/3!!

    David
     
  3. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    Welcome to the forum!

    I will only attempt to give my feedback on your points 1 and 2 as I have been trying to decide the same.

    1) I have the 20mm/1.7 and love the lens. I have a preorder on the 25mm/1.4 also. as david said, I think there is overlap here, but the 20mm will be half the weight and half the length. I will keep both for a while to see if I use the 20mm as my pancake option. If I was starting from scratch, I think I would pick up your 14mm as my pancake (on my wife's E-PL3 now) and get the 25mm/1.4, skipping the 20.

    2) I purchased the Panasonic 45mm and have been very pleased with its outdoor candid/portrait performance. IMO, you really need to be into macro to justify this lens over the Oly 45mm f1.8 given the higher price of the Panasonic and the larger size and weight. I currently have my Panasonic 45 listed for sale... if it looks like it will go too low, I will keep and learn macro.

    Good luck!
     
  4. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    Whoops, just remembered that you had a G3, so no IBIS. This may make the Panasonic/Leica 45mm with its optical stabilization a better option. I am sure the Panasonic body owners around here can provide input on this.
     
  5. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    My 2 cents:

    1) get a 20mm/1.7, used if you can. It's a great carry-around, and it's cheap to try. The 25/1.4 will a) not be readily available at first anyway, and b) will fall in price eventually. I've had the 20 for a while, and am on a pre-order list for the 25. I'll judge between the two, but in terms of preserving your investment, I think the 20mm is a good first one to try out. In the end, though, you are not likely to lose with either.

    2) These are not comparable lenses. Do you like macro? Get the PL45. Do you like portrait? Get the 45/1.8. The macro does have IS, so if you do neither macro nor portrait, then maybe the IS would persuade you, but if you REALLY do neither, then save your pennies on the other lenses, and skip the 45mm length for right now. Or, buy a cheap OM 50/1.4 and adapter, and play around with legacy and MF for some cheap money. It's kind of fun!

    4) I never had the 7-14. I did have the 10-22 for a short time with my Canon (and also a 17-40 with my 5D), but preferred the Tokina 12-24 instead on my crop. I have had the Oly 9-18 with my EP1, which is more affordable and compacts down more than the 7-14, but the 7-14 is said to be better optically. Not an exact comparison, but here's my input: I was as happy with the 9-18 output as the Tokina, and I preferred the Tokina to the 10-22. Ergo, the 7-14 should be just as good or better than the 10-22 (does that make sense?) But given that the 7-14 and the 9-18 are both non-IS (I believe) -- you might consider the 9-18, just because it's a nice walk around length (out to 36mm eq. FOV) and collapses out of the way, but if you really like wide, people have done many spectacular shots on the 7-14. If you got the cash, and you liked the 10-22, then get the 7-14.
     
  6. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    I have been shooting micro 4/3 since the E-p1 came out... I still have only 2 native micro 4/3 lenses... the Zuiko 17/2.8 and the Lumix 20/1.7... never use the 17mm any more... its the 20mm or the 4/3 50/2 or legacy for me

    Long lenses don't work for me on the E-P1... balance is all wrong . If I want to go long I use my 4/3 camera and e-510

    if you like wide however..check out the Oly 9-18.... I have the 4/3 version and it does a good job

    I have the 25/1.4 in 4/3 mount and it is a stunning lens... not sure whether the micro 4/3 version will be quite as good

    personally I would save your dollars right now and learn the lenses you have before splashing out on every toy in the box....:)
    K
     
  7. Wormwood

    Wormwood Mu-43 Regular

    101
    Aug 17, 2011
    Sydney, Australia
    Just to jump on this discussion - will the 20mm/1.7 price drop more so when the 25 hits the streets? I am currently looking at getting a 20mm from this forum but if older lens price shift down when a newer model comes out I might hold and buy new or buy second hand more reduced.

    Great thread btw - solid info for Acolyte like myself


    Wormwood
     
  8. Art

    Art Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    I doubt so. These two lenses are not really competitors. Panny 20mm is much more compact pancake style lens. 25mm is full size Leica co-branded premium lens.
     
  9. Wormwood

    Wormwood Mu-43 Regular

    101
    Aug 17, 2011
    Sydney, Australia
    Thank you for that, Art


    Wormwood
     
  10. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
    :smile:
     
  11. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011

    I'd disagree with Art and say yes, definitely.

    Up till now, if you wanted a fast/normal with AF for MFT you could only get the 20mm/f1.7.

    Now if you want speed and don't care about size/cost, there are options. So I would image some 20mm owners will definitely shift.
     
  12. bobbywise

    bobbywise Mu-43 Regular

    130
    Aug 23, 2011
    Nantes, France
    Hi everyone,

    Many thanks to all of you who replied so far, and so quickly :2thumbs:

    So far, your comments are helping me closer to deciding my future lens buying plan.

    I didn't mention in my initial post, but for now, I'm only interested in getting native MFT lenses, and currently not interested in using adaptors. I'm pretty sure this as time goes on, I'll want to use non-native MFT lenses with adaptors, but for now I'm sticking with the natives.

    I also didn't mention in my original post, that for my 550D, I have the 100mm F2.8 L IS USM lens (which I've been slowly learning how to use), so yes, I'd like to be able to do Macro.

    Opps, I was mistaken on the price of the two 45mm lenses. Yes, the price difference is amazing. So the point of knowing whether I need macro, plus dual use for 'reasonable' portrait, plus OIS is important one to consider when the price difference is so large between these two lenses.

    Currently, this is how I'm starting to feel about my future lens purchasing (my feelings will probably change with time as more opinions come in from other forum users :rofl:) The order (over time), in which I buy the lenses is totally undecided, but here's how I'm currently feeling to my initial four questions.

    1. I'll go for the 25mm/1.4 since it could also probably be used as a reasonable portrait lens (if close enough to subject) with the larger aperture. Probably sometime far in the future, I'll get the 'legendary' 20mm/1.7 anyway, but in the short term my existing 14mm/2.5 and a 25mm/1.4 will ideal for me. Having said that, I'm not buying anything in the short term, so I'll wait to hear what others start saying on the newly released 25mm/1.4 before buying it.

    2. Macro, OIS and reasonable Portrait capability has won me over in deciding to get the Panasonic 45mm/2.8, even if it's far more expensive. The Macro shots from this lens look great, and if in portraits I couldn't achieve sufficient subject isolation with the F2.8 maybe using the 25mm/1.4 (closer to the subject) would be a good compromise?

    3. Still no intention on getting the 14-140mm. But who knows... If one day Panasonic release a G3 kit with this lens, or a GH3 kit with this lens, I might be tempted. But buying the lens outside of "camera kit" currently seems too pricey for me.

    4. Some great points about the far smaller, far cheaper, and similar 8-18mm Oly. The Panasonic 7-14mm constant F4 slightly edges it for me, but it's far bigger and far more expensive. For now, in the short term, I won't consider buying any Wide Angle for the MFT format, and I'll stick with my "heavier/larger" 550D 10-22mm combo. Although the far cheaper/smaller 8-18mm Oly is very tempting !
    Edit: Seeing Nick's recommendation on the Panasonic 7-14mm/4 now has me re-thinking that this lens is a must have and a replacement for my "heavier/larger" 550D 10-22mm combo :)


    Thanks again, and looking forward to more opinions :smile:

    Rob
     
  13. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
    :smile:
     
  14. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    OK, my two more cents, based on your revised observations.

    Go for the 25/1.4, and it will likely take good head and shoulders and body portraits. If you don't need the pancake, go with the PL25.

    Get the PL45. There's nothing wrong with that lens. I like the color and contrast. I already have a legacy macro (and I prefer MF for macro), so I lean to the mZD45, but the PL45 is a very nice lens. It doesn't really do classic "portrait" but it will do just about everything else (you can see my review of my OM 50 macro vs. PL45 here: https://www.mu-43.com/f102/panasoni...o-vs-olympus-zuiko-om-50mm-f-2-0-macro-12478/ and the PL45 image thread is here: https://www.mu-43.com/f80/panasonic-leica-45mm-f-2-8-image-thread-299/)

    Get either the 9-18 or the 7-14. They are both "wide enough" for most folks, but if you have enough money (and it seems that you do, or at least more than me :) then go 7-14. I think the 7-14 will be qualitatively different than your 10-22, the 9-18 will be like the 10-22 on an m43.
     
  15. dayou14

    dayou14 Mu-43 Regular

    59
    Jul 6, 2011
    Rob,

    You need general experience with MFT lenses, which you try to compensate by asking people on this forum. That's a great start. But lens preferences is in large part an individual preferences thing, so if I were you, I'd borrow, cajole, and event rent all of these lenses for several weekends, and just go out and shoot.

    After that, you will have the inner conviction which lenses to buy.
     
  16. dayou14

    dayou14 Mu-43 Regular

    59
    Jul 6, 2011
    Having said the above,

    I'd take the plunge and just get the 20mm F1.7 anyway. I won't call it as THE reason to be in MFT, but I think it's fair to say MFT would be a lot less attractive to lots of folks if this lens didn't existed.

    This lens stay on my camera and is hardly taken off, but now it is replaced by the 25mm F1.4. Still, I'm not selling the 20 1.7. I know I'll get round to using it again.

    Bian
     
  17. bobbywise

    bobbywise Mu-43 Regular

    130
    Aug 23, 2011
    Nantes, France
    Hi again everyone,

    So after more reading, and hanging around here, and looking at the photos from different lenses, etc. , I've decided to get the lenses in the following order:

    1. Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH MEGA O.I.S. HES045 Lens
    The more I see the shots from this lens, the more I want it. I think it will complement my existing 14mm/2.5 and my soon to arrive 100-300mm. I've even posted in the buy/sell section for this lens (see https://www.mu-43.com/f17/wanted-panasonic-leica-45mm-f2-8-macro-15730/#post142339), so I have my fingers crossed :big grin:

    2. Either a 20mm/1.7 or the new 25mm/1.4
    A little further down the line I want one of these. I'm tempted to get the 25mm/1.4 before the 20mm/1.7, but I will wait a while and see what people start saying about the 25mm/1.4. Again, when I see shots from the 20mm/1.7 I really want it now (plus with what other people have been recommending), but I'll really going to wait and see how things pan out over the next few weeks with feedback on the 25mm/1.4.

    Thanks again to all for your opinions.

    Rob
     
  18. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    Rob,

    Well thought out, and sounds like you're going to have a good time. When you get your new lenses, don't forget to post pictures!
     
  19. nickthetasmaniac

    nickthetasmaniac Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 11, 2011
  20. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Good choices. The PL45 is a truly fantastic lens, the only legit criticism is the price, which is easily addressed by buying used.

    Don't underestimate the effect of the size of the 20/1.7 - when you have a camera that capable, that small, you may wonder why the 25 is so big (at least I do LOL)
     
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