Olympus - M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 60mm - Where am I going wrong?

soundpete

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Jul 17, 2011
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I got into Macro two or three years ago using an EP-2 and a Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro. Just over a year ago I bought the Olympus - M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 60mm and have not managed to get anything even nearly as satisfying as the Vivitar 55mm out of it - at first I put it down to my lack of skill then the combination of old camera new lens until recently I bought a new EM-5… To my eyes at 1:1 - everything looks great in the viewfinder and even on the display after the shot it looks quiet good however when I get it on the computer everything looks really soft and slightly out of focus compared to the old Vivitar. I i have quite a few M43 lens and cameras so I am ruling out equipment. User error or lens fault seems most likely or maybe the Vivitar is just fooling me, if its user error where am I going wrong?

Any advice would be appreciated - thanks.

Both taken on tripod in strong sunlight then converted from raw to jpg in lightroom with no processing - the flower is about 5mm wide:
Olympus - M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 60mm
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Vivitar 55mm F2.8 1:1 macro
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picturewow

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Your shutter speed of 1/80 can be too low if it is slightly windy and the flower is moving. Try a static object in your home.
 

Dave Lively

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It looks like you used a different aperture with the Vivitar lens. That picture has less depth of field.

Diffraction starts showing up around f8 on m43 cameras. According to the EXIF you had the Olympus 60mm set to f11. Normally this is just a little softer than f5.6 or f8. But when you focus very closely the aperture you set does not always reflect the actual aperture. I do not know if your camera corrects for this but if it didn't you might have been shooting at f22 if that was a very small flower. And f22 will cause softness due to diffraction.

Try setting the aperture on your Olympus 60mm so you get the same shutter speed at the same ISO as when you used the Vivitar lens.
 
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Try setting the aperture on your Olympus 60mm so you get the same shutter speed at the same ISO as when you used the Vivitar lens.
I tried this with my M Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 Macro and Vivitar 55mm f/2.8 Macro. The wind keeps gusting, so I had a lot of failures. These are both the same Chive flower, both shot at ISO 1000, 1/2000th and f/8.0 on the Vivitar and f/7.1 on the Oly. I always thought the Oly was sharper, but of the 25 photos that I shot, I had better ones with the Vivitar. Gusty winds don't help. All were shot at 1:1, Manual Focus, and 1:5 magnification to help with focus.


Vivitar 55mm f/2.8 Macro

M1017645
by Harvey Richards, on Flickr


M Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 Macro

M1017648
by Harvey Richards, on Flickr​
 

GFFPhoto

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Maybe you have a bad copy. From what I've seen, its a pretty spectacular macro lens. Do a controlled test, indoors with a tripod, below f5 (to eliminate diffraction completely). If its not sharp, send it to Olympus for service (I'd say exchange, but you say its a year old).
 

wjiang

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In the chive flower comparison the 60mm shot is clearly focussed on the background rather than the flower petal tips like they are with the 55mm. Testing with wind is not going to be conclusive - too much variation in focus at macro distances. Try to set up a tripod indoors with a subject out of the wind when comparing.
 

tjdean01

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Feb 20, 2013
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From all my amateur testing over the past 15 years, I have NEVER, not even once, done a comparison between two cameras or lenses and had camera or lens "A" look better than "B" but on a more controlled test (or a pro review online) had those results reversed. In the old days I would test P&S cameras before they were released by looking at the photo on the LCD. Accurate? Not at all. Could it tell you which camera produced better results in a certain mode? Absolutely.

So, what I'm saying is, that you've done quite a few tests and the Vivitar is consistently better. Those Vivitars are good lenses, so vs anything else, I'd say that it's normal. But vs the modern O60? Hmm. I'd say you're doing something wrong with the O60 or else have a bad copy, dust on the back element, etc.
 

soundpete

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Jul 17, 2011
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OK just to clear this up - Oly UK suggested quicker shutter speeds and that seemed to improve things, so most likely me :smile:

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"800" height="600" alt="Dingy Skipper"></a>[/IMG]
 
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