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Olympus F2.8 60mm Macro

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by newphoto1, Feb 17, 2015.

  1. newphoto1

    newphoto1 Mu-43 Regular

    87
    Aug 24, 2014
    Oklahoma
    Colin
    I just ordered my second copy of this lens, after selling the first one. My plan was to let the 40-150 Pro serve my macro needs, but planning a trip to Costa Rica this summer and I just think I might find a macro very useful. My first copy was only used once on a tripod to photograph wildflowers. I used it on a tripod and I thought the images were a little soft. I manually focused using focus peaking, and I did not turn off IBIS. Shutter speeds would have put me in the shutter shock range. I also found the 1To1 switch function a little confusing. I can return this lens any time for two weeks. What am I missing here? This lens is pretty highly rated by websites and users, although some report difficulty using manual focus. Would welcome any opinions.
     
  2. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Macro is not the easiest thing to do. Technique is important, as is practice. IBIS is good, tripod is good. Small aperture is good. Flash is good, or very good light. The 60mm macro is an excellent lens - persevere!!
     
  3. Harvey Melvin Richards

    Harvey Melvin Richards Photo Posting Junkie

    Feb 15, 2014
    Southwest Utah
    The 60mm will reset itself whenever you turn your camera off. So you will need to reselect close-up with the focus limiter. It also turns back on Auto Focus every time you move it. I get very frustrated by mine, but the photos that I get are worth it. And it gets significantly closer than the 40-150 PRO.
     
  4. nuclearboy

    nuclearboy Mu-43 Top Veteran

    850
    Jan 28, 2011
    Ellicott City, MD
    Chris
    I had this lens too. It was really sharp sometimes and then blurry other times. This was not all due to my poor form. I believe this thing had a shutter shock issue when coupled to my E-P5. This was before the "fix" to the E-P5. I ended up selling it because I was disappointed too many times. Looking back, I think shutter shock was the issue that caused me grief. I now have the 75mm and don't need a macro that bad so my interest in the 60 is gone. It was a nice lens when it worked for me.
     
  5. newphoto1

    newphoto1 Mu-43 Regular

    87
    Aug 24, 2014
    Oklahoma
    Colin
    Yes macro photography is difficult. I have been doing it and teaching it for many years. I don't think technique had much to do with my soft results, but maybe the zero second shock setting will help. I also wasn't aware that it reset auto focus with movement, or resetting the focus limiter when turned off. All good info, but I can't help wondering what Olympus engineers were thinking when they designed it this way???
     
  6. johnvanatta

    johnvanatta Mu-43 Regular

    181
    Aug 5, 2014
    Oakland, CA
    It's a serious contender for the sharpest lens I've ever shot, at least in the center at close focus. Never had it go soft except when focus didn't latch.

    Did you try testing it outside of shutter shock speeds? You don't have to do anything fancier than just walking around outside in daylight. That's the first priority, to decide if it's a lens issue or a camera issue.
     
  7. Ted

    Ted Mu-43 Regular

    79
    Oct 10, 2014
    Tasmania, Australia
    Theo B
    I got mine a few weeks ago and have so much fun when I take it out to play, though I'm pretty rubbish with it! I was really surprised by how difficult macro photography really is, but it's so worth it when you move the images over to your computer and just gawk at the detail. Thinking I might need to get a monopod to keep it steady though and I still need to invest in some sort of flash for it..
     
  8. Paul80

    Paul80 Mu-43 Veteran

    254
    Jul 6, 2014
    The issue the OP had with his lens was probably answered by the OP himself in the first post

    He used it with his camera mounted on a tripod and didn't turn of IBIS, that was why he got soft results, IBIS would be turned of when a tripod is used. It is in the cameras instructions.

    When all else fails read the instructions ;)
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2015
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. Ted

    Ted Mu-43 Regular

    79
    Oct 10, 2014
    Tasmania, Australia
    Theo B
    I had no idea you were supposed to do that! What about on a windy day if the camera is moving a little bit? Leave it on I assume?
     
  10. banj911

    banj911 Mu-43 Veteran

    353
    Aug 12, 2014
    QLD Australia
    I think this is a stellar lens. I have found that I have the greatest success by using a flash to light the subject, as the flash duration essentially becomes the default shutter speed.
    I have also found that, especially using the flash, that maximum sharpness is achieved by setting IBIS to off, even hand held.
    One thing I have done is set FN Button 2 to enable manual focus, this way I can push the limiter wheel to enable max magnification, press the FN2 button and autofocus is disabled. This way I can quickly establish the focal distance and sway towards and away from the subject to nail focus on the live view screen prior to pressing the shutter. I never use image magnification for fine focus, the live screen is plenty good enough for me.
    Cheers
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. newphoto1

    newphoto1 Mu-43 Regular

    87
    Aug 24, 2014
    Oklahoma
    Colin
    I suppose IBIS on might have caused the soft results I got with macro on a tripod, but using the 12-40 F2.8 on a tripod with IBIS on does not affect sharpness at all???
     
  12. Paul80

    Paul80 Mu-43 Veteran

    254
    Jul 6, 2014
    When you use a macro lens you are magnifying everything, including any image or camera and with IBIS Turned on sensor movement, with the 12-40 it will still effect it but because of the lower magnification you probably will not see the effect under normal conditions, unless your tripod is pants that is ;)
     
  13. newphoto1

    newphoto1 Mu-43 Regular

    87
    Aug 24, 2014
    Oklahoma
    Colin
    Makes sense. I will be sure it is turned off on a tripod. Thanks.
     
  14. datagov

    datagov Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 2, 2012
    New York
    I bought this lens a week ago and have had some time to compare it to my two other Macro lenses - the Tokina at-x 90mm f2.5 and the Lester A. Dine 105mm f2.8. All three produce magnificent macro images and are relatively all the same when it comes to sharpness. The O60 has the best colors, but only by a small margin. It is lighter and I do enjoy the autofocus. I don't have to take five shots now to get one sharp one. But the working distance of the other two lenses is better, and I really don't mind manual focus. MF on the O60 takes some getting used to and it hunts for focus in low light.

    I will be keeping all three for different purposes.
     
  15. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    I don't use it a lot, but I do love my Oly 60 when I do. It's sharp wide open for macro and portraiture. I go against the grain and leave IBIS on all the time, even tripod mounted, and have no issues with this lens showing soft performance. I do use a cable release when shooting tripod mounted macro.
     
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  16. Harvey Melvin Richards

    Harvey Melvin Richards Photo Posting Junkie

    Feb 15, 2014
    Southwest Utah
    I do the same. I would like to see an actual test that shows a tripod photo is better with IBIS off, than on. I would do it, but I'm just too lazy.
     
  17. johnvanatta

    johnvanatta Mu-43 Regular

    181
    Aug 5, 2014
    Oakland, CA
    Perhaps my recent experience is relevant. I was using the Oly 60 at near 1:1 on some lichen spots. I have a metal screw-in hood mounted on it. I was stabilizing the camera by propping the edge of the hood on the rock. I had IBIS on initially, but I noticed when the camera was completely immobilized by pressure on the lens hood, things got visibly worse in the EVF. Turning IBIS off solved it.

    Anecdotal, yes, but enough to convince me that there is merit to the idea that when there is no movement to correct, the IBIS starts making its own.
     
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  18. Paul80

    Paul80 Mu-43 Veteran

    254
    Jul 6, 2014
    When I use my one Its always on my G6 so no Image Stabilization on or off worries (Its always off as the G6 & Lens has none) I try to always use flash so the duration of the flash acts as the effective shutter speed removing all camera shake issues and I if I am not using flash then I always try use the cameras electronic shutter as that gives a sharper image, as long as nothing is moving that is.

    Paul
     
  19. newphoto1

    newphoto1 Mu-43 Regular

    87
    Aug 24, 2014
    Oklahoma
    Colin
    When my new 60MM Macro gets delivered on Monday, I am going to test it on a tripod with same closeup, Ibis on and off. I will post the results if any.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. zulfur666

    zulfur666 Mu-43 Veteran

    254
    Jan 30, 2014
    no tripod needed..... HOLD your breath, hold steady, keep IBIS on, Center AF on, fire at your hearts content. AF works great, never use MF on this lens. Just sayin.... :)
    Heck I mostly use the 60mm Macro for underwater photography and thats a skill on its own.... never have a tripod there.... :) All great tack sharp images. One of my favorite lenses when underwater.
    Here's an example, those sea slugs are half the size of your pinky :)

     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2015
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