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Olympus 45mm/f1.8 Member Reviews

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by wanjeyin, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. wanjeyin

    wanjeyin Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 1, 2011
    Here's mine!

    My Olympus 45mm/1.8 arrived today from Japan (Ebay) after being pre-ordered back in July. During unboxing, I was presented with two instruction booklets (one english, one japanese), and a bubble-wrapped lens. No hood was included. This lens is intended to replace my current Canon nFD 50mm/f1.4 (to go on a tangent, I do also have the PL45mm/f2.8, but I reserve that lens almost exclusively for hiking and outdoor adventures).

    As for first impressions I'm amazed at how slender the lens is considering that it is a f1.8 and comparing to my current 14mm/f2.5 and 20mm/f1.7 pancakes! This is obviously a result of the lens being a non-pancake and non-IS, which I believe probably makes it simpler to manufacture. Proportion wise, it scales really nicely relative to the G3 body, which I use and really drives home the point of miniaturization of the system as a whole.

    Yes there is indeed a lot of plastic on this lens, but at least the mount itself is metal. Upon mounting onto the G3 the connection feels solid and secure. I must say, the plastics used in the lens do feel a tad flimsier than the plastics used in the panasonic lenses. Overall, the panasonic lenses feel more robust in my hand. I'm not so sure how long the silver finish on the plastic will wear. I suspect that the silver finish will wear off revealing the base colour over time. The only external moving part of the lens is the focus ring which itself rotates vary smoothly. Although a hood was not included in the box, the lens will take an accessory hood. The bayonet hood mount on the lens is protected by a silver plastic bayonet ring.

    As for the operation early indications are that this lens will sit in the body for a good chunk of time. As everyone has stated the lens is extremely sharp in the centre and does very well in the corners wide-open. Contrast is excellent. Bokeh is, well I'm sure you've all seen samples already (excellent!)! The only caveat is that my shutter speeds really are limited to 1/100s or greater on my G3 (which does not have IBIS). On a good day, I can go as low as 1/80s before camera shake sets in. In a typical cubicle office setting ISO400 is usually sufficient for me to get 1/80s or 1/100s wide-open.

    Compared to the Canon nFD 50mm/1.8, the Oly has slightly less reach at 90mm equiv, compared to 100mm on the Canon. While their aperture numbers are fairly close to each other, I'm able to get much higher shutter speeds on the Canon at the same ISO settings. Is this because of the larger image circle of the nFD lens which exposes the sensor to more light? Maybe you guys will know better here. In terms of "IS", the Oly feels more prone to shaking, likely as it is so light! The Canon, being a full-frame lens, is much heavier and more resistant to slight shakes of the hand.

    All in all, this lens will be a nice replacement for the Canon nFD 50/f1.4 and will likely find significant mount time on my G3.

    These are my initial thoughts so far. I hope you enjoyed reading my review!

    • Like Like x 14
  2. htc

    htc Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 11, 2011
    Thank you wanjeyin. This is like staring through candy store window from outside... :smile:
  3. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Thanks, AJW... can't wait for mine to arrive!
  4. ssgreenley

    ssgreenley Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 12, 2011
    Thanks very much! Just as a side note, why is the PL 45 relegated to hiking?
  5. wanjeyin

    wanjeyin Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 1, 2011
    I found the PL45 of limited use indoors because of its slower aperture speed. As such, before the Oly 45mm/1.8, I used a Canon nFD 50mm/f1.4 for use indoors. Outdoors, the PL45 is awesome as a dual-purpose telephoto-walkaround and macro lens. During a typical hiking/backpacking outing, a large proportion of my captures are macros. Indeed, my outdoor kit includes the 7-14mm, 20mm, and PL45. So the PL45, being a dual-purpose lens, practically gives me the option of using 4 lenses when I'm in fact carrying three.

  6. wanjeyin

    wanjeyin Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 1, 2011
    Here's a sample of the Oly 45mm/f1.8 on a G3 minutes after unboxing!

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    View image in gallery
  7. Armanius

    Armanius Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 23, 2010
    Congratulations! I'm jealous!

    Could you post more samples? And especially of portraits? Thank you!
  8. ZephyrZ33

    ZephyrZ33 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Nov 18, 2010
    Southern California
    If there was a "hate" button I'd hit in right now while sipping on my kool-aid.

    Congrats man! Give us more pix.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Thanks for the review. Need more images!!!
  10. wanjeyin

    wanjeyin Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 1, 2011
    A few more samples on first day. Don't have a lot of time with two kids to take care of! Third one of my kid has a bit of camera shake at 1/80s. The others were taken at 1/100s or faster. Last one is of my office secretary.

    Everything that has been said about the bokeh potential of this lens is true. Background objects seem to melt away!



    PS: Please don't mind the noodles hanging off my daughter's mouth!

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    • Like Like x 3
  11. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    Thanks for the review and images! Oh, and I hate/envy you! :biggrin:
  12. Danny_Two

    Danny_Two Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 30, 2010
    DP Review initial impressions and image gallery here.
  13. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    Sharp images! Thanks for the first impression review!

    Now, where is mine, B&H?
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