Olympus 9-18mm or Panasonic 7-14mm?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by majordude, Jan 19, 2013.

  1. majordude

    majordude Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 28, 2012
    When I had my old OM (film) series camera I always had a 70-150mm Tamron or something on my camera (I can't recall the brand or focal length). But 20 years later I am discovering that I like wide angles.

    My OM-1n came with a 50mm which I really disliked for some reason. But I liked the way faces came out in the 70mm setting.

    Now, I shoot a lot of group scenes (not just one face but a family) or a landscape which I could care less about when I was younger. It was all shots of chicas. :rolleyes: 

    I have the 12-50mm kit and almost always keep it at the 12mm setting.

    I recently bought the 7.5mm Rokinon lens which I really like but it's a fisheye and isn't a "normal" wide angle lens. Which had it's pluses and minuses.

    So I am thinking I want a good wide angle lens. The 12-50mm fits me well but I want to push the extreme.

    I've looked at the two lenses in the title and I am thinking I need to spend my tax return on one of them. :rolleyes: 

    The Olympus is around $600-700 and the Panasonic is $900+ depending on where you buy it.

    The reviews say the Pan is better optically than the Oly.

    Would you spend the extra $300+ on the Panasonic?
  2. Grinch

    Grinch Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 9, 2011
    I did go with the panny, and it wasn't the image quality. For me the deciding factor was the extra 2mm and all that they allow. The only downsides to the panny are size and difficulty with filters( although there are work arounds and a pricey option as well ).
    • Like Like x 1
  3. dav1dz

    dav1dz Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Nov 6, 2012
    If you can find an Olympus 9-18mm refurbed, they're great deals. If I didn't see it I wouldn't have bought it. Now that I have it I wish I had bought an UWA sooner.

    Having filters is a nice convenience. If there is a deal to be had it'll more than just $300 difference in price.
  4. tdekany

    tdekany Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 8, 2011
    I went with the 7-14. Supposed to be one of the sharpest lenses in the M4/3 world. Very happy with it. Paid $689 on amazon (look for the used ones, when it says like new, they really mean it). The oly can be had at a great savings from cameta.

    I am sure that both lenses are excellent, but between 7-9 there is a big difference.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. MAubrey

    MAubrey Photographer

    Jul 9, 2012
    Bellingham, WA
    Mike Aubrey
    I went with the 9-18mm for two reasons. First, I was able to pick it up refurbished with a year warranty for $499. That was huge for me, since my budget was tight. Secondly, the ability to zoom up to 18mm made, in my view, the 9-18mm a more useful lens for just walking around. For quite a while my entire kit consisted of the Oly9-18mm, PL25mm, and Oly45mm, which worked incredibly well. Image quality shouldn't be an issue. They're both quite sharp and I'd say the reviews over-emphasize the difference between the two.

    With that said, since you already use the 12-50mm, the benefit of being able to zoom to 18mm is less significant I suppose. Occasionally, you'll see the price of the 7-14mm go down to $800 new and $700 used. If I were in your shoes, I'd probably go for the 7-14mm.

    personally, what I'd really like is either an 8 or 9mm TS f/4 lens or a 7mm f/2.8 prime...maybe someday.
  6. The clear answer here is that we need a lens that fits right in the middle of these two :smile:

    8-18mm, sharper corners than the O9-18, no purple weirdness as per the P7-14, non-collapsible so that it feels solid, accepts filters and uses a standard lens cap, and is priced right in the middle of the two existing designs.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. jnewell

    jnewell Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 23, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Yes, I would and did (spend the extra money for the P7-14. Reasons: extra wide coverage and (less important) one stop faster at the longer end. I love having the additional FOV and would buy the lens again with no questions.
  8. LeoS

    LeoS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 6, 2012
    I've been really happy with my 7-14mm.

    Recently I picked up a used 9-18mm off Ebay to compare with and decided to resell the thing because I still highly prefer the 7-14mm.

    Advantages of the 9-18mm:
    - price
    - slightly smaller and lighter
    - threads for filter
    - 15-18mm
    - No purple blobs (which isn't that much of a problem for me)

    - Lens locking mechanism (similar to 14-42mm)
    - Not as sharp as 7-14mm
    - 7-8mm

    For me, the extra 2mm on the wide end (on a UW lens) and the visibly better IQ is really worth keeping the 7-14mm over the 9-18mm.
  9. BigTam

    BigTam Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 19, 2012
    Dortmund, Germany
    It depends on what you shoot, I think. I do a lot of church interiors, often with bright (compared to the ambient levels) light sources in the frame.

    On the EM5, that almost always produced large purple blotches. Other cameras don't seem to have the problem to the same extent.

    For me, that meant the 9-18 stays, even though I would have liked the extra width. But don't get me wrong, the m.Zuiko is a very good lens in its own right.
  10. Livnius

    Livnius Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    Melbourne. Australia
    Again, like so many others m43 lens comparisons, we are talking about 2 very good lenses here both of which are in some way a compromise. Much like the P20 vs PL25 or the PL45 vs O60 or any of the other commonly compared lenses, it boils down to which of the compromises you are most/least prepared to live with.

    FWIW...although I have shot both and could happily live with either (currently settled on the P7-14) I am keeping a close eye on the Fuji X series and its UWA, touted for release at the end of this year, it is I believe of similar focal range, takes filters and is about 1 or 1.1/3 stops faster. For the type of shooting I do with UWA lenses the slightly slower Fuji X focussing would be a non issue in this case....unlike the yet to be resolved LR 'watercolor' smearing of X-trans files !

    Options...we have plenty of them.if anyone is ever in doubt as to whether a particular lens is any good or better/worse than another lens...check out ANY lens image thread and see that each filled with just as many great images as the other...man, even the $50 body cap lens thread has some cool stuff.
    • Like Like x 2
  11. Nikstar65

    Nikstar65 Mu-43 Rookie

    Jun 28, 2012
    I too have the 12-50mm and want to crank my photography up abit. What did you decide on? The Oly 17mm or Pana 20mm?
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