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Review Olympus 14-150mm f/4-5.6 II

Discussion in 'Reviews, Tests, & Shootouts' started by gryphon1911, Dec 4, 2018.

  1. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    Andrew
    Background
    An all in one, affordable, weather sealed lens for micro four thirds? Interested?
    This is the newest iteration of this "kit" lens by Olympus. The original was not weather sealed, so we have an upgrade there. Let's take a look at this lens.

    12-21-2016_PENF_tests_PC210005.jpg
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    1/200, f/6.3, ISO 200 @ 58mm

    Handling/Weight/Size
    Relatively, for its range, the lens is just slightly smaller than the Olympus 12-40/2.8 PRO. It is smaller in diameter as well as length. It is very similar in size to the budget friendly Olympus 40-150/4-5.6R lens.

    It is an f/4-5.6, which helps keep the size down. The lens does extend when zoomed. The zoom ring is smooth and responsive, the lens feels solidly built.

    This is a great option for those times when only one camera/lens is wanted or the ability to change lenses (high dust environment or raining/inclement weather) is not possible. The weather sealing is a great thing to have when you need it.

    The close focusing of this lens is welcome as well. You can get very close. It is not good enough to be a "macro" lens, but the close focusing capability will most likely satisfy a lot of photographers needs.

    OI000013-01.jpg
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    1/500, f/4, ISO 200 @ 14mm

    Image Quality
    Let's make no qualms about it...this is not going to rival IQ from lenses such as the PRO line zooms. It does start at f/4, so you lose some ability to have a shallow depth of field like you would get with an f/2.8 zoom or the f/1.x primes.

    What I planned on using this for was an all in one street shooting or every day carry lens.

    The image quality did not hold up to what I wanted, just too many compromises for the range you are getting. I'll stick with the current setup I have which is 2 lenses, the Panasonic 12-32 and the Oly 40-150R.

    I found that doing my part as a photographer, that I was able to get some shallow depth of field and that the transition and out of focus areas are quite pleasant. You can judge for yourself from the sample images, though.
    Image quality seems best at wide to medium telephoto and suffers at the long end toward the 150mm mark.

    All sample images taken with the Olympus PEN-F.

    OI000017-01.jpg
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    1/200, f/5.6, ISO 200 @ 54mm

    Auto Focus
    As to be expected with modern Olympus built micro four thirds lenses, this is a quick focusing lens. You'll have no complaints from me on its S-AF performance.

    12-21-2016_PENF_tests_PC210013-Edit.jpg
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    1/200, f/7.1, ISO 1250 @ 90mm

    12-21-2016_PENF_tests_PC210008.jpg
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    1/320, f/5.6, ISO 200 @ 150mm

    Bottom Line:
    In a kit or at the current $399 price(as of 12-22-2016), this is a great everyday carry option when versatility or weather sealing are needed and budget is a concern. If you want something faster with better IQ but need the versatility, I'd look more to the 12-100/4 PRO lens.

    It suffers most at the longer telephoto end in clarity. As stated previously, this is not a keeper lens for me and I'll stick with the 2 lens kit of the P12-32 and O40-150R.
     
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  2. mary

    mary Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    226
    Dec 13, 2018
    squirrel.jpg
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  3. mary

    mary Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    226
    Dec 13, 2018
    Maybe I got lucky but my sample of the lens is terrific
     
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  4. rloewy

    rloewy Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    May 5, 2014
    Ron
    Same
     
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  5. Sammyboy

    Sammyboy m43 Pro

    Oct 26, 2010
    Steeler Country
    .... I must be lucky too, mine is outstanding .....
     
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  6. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    Andrew
    Maybe some day I'll get lucky enough to be able to try another. I'd like nothing more than to have a competent super zoom. The version I had was just not good enough. Perhaps sample variation, perhaps I'm just being too strict.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2018
  7. Egregius V

    Egregius V Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    554
    Jun 14, 2015
    Massachusetts, USA
    Rev. Gregory Vozzo
    My 14-150 II is very sharp in the center, but can be weak away from the center toward the wide end - especially at 14mm. How weak seems to vary. Stopping down helps a bit - though I recommend avoiding apertures smaller than f/8 with this particular lens. Aberrations don't seem too bad to me. Used carefully, my copy is quite sharp across most of the frame, even at 150mm. My 40-150 R is sharper - in fact, it's sharp edge-to-edge. Still, I don't hesitate to use the superzoom when I'm in a hurry or want a sealed lens.
     
    • Appreciate Appreciate x 1
  8. StephenB

    StephenB Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Aug 29, 2018
    Somerset UK
    Steve
    Maybe I don't expect as much as others from a lens, but mine has impressed me. I have a Pro lens and a couple of primes for comparison. Without doubt my weakest lens is the 12-42 kit lens.
     
  9. mary

    mary Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    226
    Dec 13, 2018
    I bought mine used at Adorama..$299.00 . I was amazed at the price and the quality of the lens coming from Nikon lenses..its a steal!
     
  10. WT21

    WT21 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    This is my experience with the mark I. At the longest end, it was softer than I wanted. Although...it worked for portraits! I found I prefer the P12-60kit. A solid all-around range, and WR.
     
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  11. mary

    mary Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    226
    Dec 13, 2018
    In my experience stopping down the lens really sharpens it up..may not be ideal for portrait shooters looking for creamy bokeh but at 7.1 it really shines.
     
  12. Thai-Mike

    Thai-Mike Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 2, 2016
    Thailand
    Michael
    Yesterday I got my Olympus 14-150mm f4-5.6 Mark II and I te4sted at night handheld. I thought, after reading reviews that Low-light pewrformance is not that good,
    but I am amazed with it.

    handheld-1.jpg
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    • Like Like x 2
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