Olympus mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6 Experience Diary

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus
Hello everyone,

through my Olympus contacts here in the UK, I have managed to secure one of the first production mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6 lenses, to be able to answer your questions here and to arrange for some hands-on impressions by Olympus Photo Safari Group members here in the UK.

I am not a paid reviewer, so please don't expect a lab review (here's one I recommend, by Andy Westlake) - I don't photograph resolution charts... this will be a hands on experience diary, with lots of example images.

OK, first off some sample images from today - all converted from raw using the free Olympus Viewer software, and shadows enhanced + scaled for web using Lightzone.

First off, the image I selected for my PAD image for today...

"This is ENGLAND"
E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/250s f/5.6 at 42.0mm iso200
View attachment 146224

Normally, I would carry the Pen with the 20mm f1.7 in my left hand with a wrist strap, ready to shoot easily... today I took the E-PL1 with the mZD 14-150mm lens and EVF attached. It took a little getting used to carrying with the lens protruding about the same distance at 14mm as the mZD 14-42mm extended - but the light weight of the lens made it possible to get comfortable... carrying with the lens retracted to 14mm

I took the shot above from the other side of the road, looking down into the EVF raised - so easy having the range to get just the right framing.

"One legged biker"
E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/160s f/5.6 at 63.0mm iso640
View attachment 146225

One of the most important features of this lens, apart from the incredible flexibility of zoom range, is being able to isolate the subject at full zoom...

Very shy guinea pig
E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/160s f/7.1 at 150.0mm iso640
View attachment 146226

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/640s f/5.6 at 150.0mm iso200
View attachment 146227

Notice the beautiful bokeh at the close focusing distance (a very useful 50cm).

I have the PL 14-150mm OIS for 4/3rds... tomorrow I will take some side by side shots to compare quality, but my gut feeling is that it is very comparable.

This is the most exciting lens for m4/3rds since the 20mm f1.7... it is beautifully made (better action than the mZD 14-42, fast, silent, compact and lightweight).

Please post any questions you have, or examples you would like me to provide...

Cheers

Brian
 

BBW

Super Moderator Emeritus
Well, Brian, you already know how much I enjoyed that first photograph of yours since I saw it in your PAD and let you know :biggrin: - that said, it's great to see these other photographs. I am very impressed by the strength of this lens at both ends of its spectrum.

I'll be looking forward to your continued updates on both this lens and that new 9-18mm, too.:2thumbs:
 

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus
This is a great lens for candid portraits, my youngest daughter... absorbed by a game on my iphone (at least it's not facebook yet! :rolleyes:)

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/50s f/5.6 at 150.0mm iso1600
View attachment 146246

I cropped this slightly to bring the focus into her face and ruffled hair... she's at the back of the room, so the light was low - ISO 1600 on the E-PL1 is very easy to work with.

Cheers

Brian
 

soundimageplus

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Questions.

Good Stuff. Very useful and interesting.
"This is England" is a true classic.

Could I ask a few questions?

How do you find it for CA and overall sharpness?
You know the 20mm very well so a comparison with that would be useful.
I'd value your opinions much more than any test charts anyway.

Have you ever used the Panasonic 14-140? I used one a lot and liked it very much but the weight of the Olympus is very seductive.
 

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus
Thank you David, I'm off out to do some side by side shooting with the E-PL1 + mZD 14-150 vs E-30 + PL 14-150 and will be able to give you a better idea on CA then...

In low light, the superior stabilisation of the E-30 at 150mm will make a difference in getting sharp images (vs the E-PL1 which supposedly has the weaker stabilisation system)... here's a shot from the same seat across the room of a cross stitch picture - the PL 14-150 is a tiny bit sharper and more contrasty wide open I think, but I don't think you'd notice it in a print or web presented image.

One thing to note - the mZD 14-150 at 150mm seems to be noticeably longer than the PL 14-150? I will do a tripod test to confirm this outside.

E-30 + PL 14-150mm f3.5-5.6
1/6s f/5.6 at 150.0mm iso200
View attachment 146247

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/8s f/5.6 at 150.0mm iso200
View attachment 146248

Both images developed straight from raw using Capture One 5 PRO - no processing to remove CA on either.

Cheers

Brian
 

tam

Mu-43 Regular
Lots of shots at the long end, what about some at the wide end? Also how's it to use with the IS off? Not a relevant question to oly user, but pany users might be interested as the low lens weight appeals.
 

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus
Hi tam,

it will take a while to exercise the lens in a good range of conditions and applications... here are a set I took this morning - I realise these are too small to pixel peep, but I'm happy to supply any raw files on request.

E-30 + PL 14-150mm f3.5-5.6
1/250s f/8.0 at 14.0mm iso200
View attachment 146260

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/500s f/8.0 at 14.0mm iso200
View attachment 146261

E-30 + PL 14-150mm f3.5-5.6
1/400s f/8.0 at 21.0mm iso200
View attachment 146262

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/640s f/8.0 at 20.0mm iso200
View attachment 146263

E-30 + PL 14-150mm f3.5-5.6
1/500s f/8.0 at 69.0mm iso200
View attachment 146264

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/1000s f/6.3 at 67.0mm iso200
View attachment 146265

E-30 + PL 14-150mm f3.5-5.6
1/400s f/8.0 at 150.0mm iso200
View attachment 146266

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/400s f/8.0 at 150.0mm iso200
View attachment 146267

I'll post some 100% crops from the 14mm shot.

Cheers

Brian
 

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus

Amin Sabet

Administrator
One thing to note - the mZD 14-150 at 150mm seems to be noticeably longer than the PL 14-150? I will do a tripod test to confirm this outside.
Especially with megazooms, this will vary with the focus setting. The focal length reported is for infinity focus, so they should give similar magnification at infinity, all other things being equal.
 

pxpaulx

Mu-43 All-Pro
Interesting shots - a questions not directly related to the lens - is the dynamic range that much better on the e-pl1 (shadows, door details in the 150mm shots) or is that just me? I can't wait for mine! The way this lens is performing it might just replace my 45-200mm soon after.
 

elandel

Mu-43 All-Pro
Do you think it may be worthwhile selling the 14-42 and 40-150 and buying this one using it as the only lens?

I think it could be something to consider becaue with ine lens you cover the focal lenghts of two lens and you don't have to change.:smile:

I'd like to know rhe price range of this glass.:wink:
 

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus
I was wondering about that... I had IBIS enabled, and this was tripod mounted - I'd like to try more shots to see whether this is consistent.

As for the 14-42 + 40-150... I'd probably go that way (having the 20mm f1.7 for when portability is essential), despite the fact the 14-42 is more compact and closer focusing.

Cheers

Brian
 

Djarum

Super Moderator
Do you think it may be worthwhile selling the 14-42 and 40-150 and buying this one using it as the only lens?

I think it could be something to consider becaue with ine lens you cover the focal lenghts of two lens and you don't have to change.:smile:

I'd like to know rhe price range of this glass.:wink:
I've been using the 40-150 alot lately, and the only real complaint is that in anything but good lighting, it misses or hunts for focus. When it does focus accurately, its a nice sharp lens.
 

Streetshooter

Administrator Emeritus
Geeze, that looks great. The natural perspective of her face. The tonal separation is wonderful.... The skin tones really show what the camera and lens can do...
oh, good model and a good shooter helps....


This is a great lens for candid portraits, my youngest daughter... absorbed by a game on my iphone (at least it's not facebook yet! :rolleyes:)

E-PL1 + mZD 14-150mm f4-5.6
1/50s f/5.6 at 150.0mm iso1600
View attachment 146282

I cropped this slightly to bring the focus into her face and ruffled hair... she's at the back of the room, so the light was low - ISO 1600 on the E-PL1 is very easy to work with.

Cheers

Brian
 

BBW

Super Moderator Emeritus
So true, Brian, however you do have a natural touch and use it so well. You better be sure to print that beauty.
 
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