Olympus OM-D better choice 45mm or 17 mm ?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by PantelisMor, May 23, 2013.

  1. PantelisMor

    PantelisMor Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2013

    I am owner of Olympus OM-D with panasonic 14-45 Lens. I am interest to buy one lens. My first problem was to buy Panasonic 20mm 1.7 or olympus 17mm 1.8.
    I ended on olympus..... After this i am wondering if it's better to buy 17mm 1.8 or 45mm 1.8 ??

    Which lens you think it will be a better choice ?? Which of the two i will use more ???

    In time i can buy only one of the two...

    Sorry for my english
    thx a lot??
  2. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    That all depends on you. :) Do you use your Lumix in the 14mm or 45mm range more often?

    There is one more thing I would add to the equation though, and that is at which lengths do you need the faster aperture? The Lumix 14-45mm is pretty decent for sharpness, so the improvement in aperture is probably going to be the most notable difference between using your zoom and using a prime. At wider focal lengths you don't really need a fast aperture (you have much less motion blur from both subject and camera shake, and generally want a broader DOF to keep more in focus, plus DOF is naturally larger so you don't notice subject isolation much), so I would personally start with the 45mm prime for that reason if you intend to continue using your 14-45mm alongside your new prime. The wider aperture feels more "wasted" on a wide angle lens, IMHO.

    If you wanted to go without your zoom though, you could pick up the m.Zuiko 45mm/1.8 then for very little extra add a Lumix 14mm/2.5 or m.Zuiko 17mm/2.8 pancake.
  3. nuclearboy

    nuclearboy Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 28, 2011
    Ellicott City, MD
    Real Name:

    The 17 will be much more useful. That is how my experience has been. I find the 45 too long for most indoors shooting (I need a bigger house I guess) and too long for many of the type of vacation shots I seem to take.

    The 17mm shots can always be cropped down a little. You cannot crop up the 45.
  4. riverr02

    riverr02 Mu-43 Veteran

    May 2, 2011
    New York
    Real Name:
    I've owned the 45 and currently own the 17. The IQ of the 45 is better than that of the 17, in line with many of the reviews. But the focal length and it's 'good enough' IQ results in much more use for me- it's on my camera more than the 45 ever was. One other thing is that I've got the 75 which is a fantastic lens, better for my portrait purposes than the 45; hence my reasons for selling the 45. Down the road, this may be important to you.

    So in a nutshell, my vote goes for the 17. But as Ned said, it all depends on what you prefer shooting.
  5. Photodan1

    Photodan1 Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 26, 2012
    Nashville, Tennessee, USA
    Real Name:
    I have both and I think there is agreement, depending on your use. The 17 is on my camera probably 80% of the time. The IQ is quite good and the build is fantastic. The 45 is also a great lens and for portrait sessions with just one person, it is my go to lens. You won't go wrong with either of them but it is comparing apples to oranges.
  6. PantelisMor

    PantelisMor Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2013
    Thx a lot for your help.

    I think on my last travelling in Berlin, i use more 14mm and after i cropped my photos with LR... The reason which i am interest to buy a prime lens is for better IQ and Bokeh ..

    The best soloution it will be to buy the 17 and later if i have the money the 75 mm.

    Although i have seen a lot of pictures from 45 mm 1.8 and i am very impressed.....
    i found this lens used for 200.00 euro.

    Very hard decision......
  7. Andym72

    Andym72 Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 4, 2013
    Reading, UK
    Download ExposurePlot and check out how many shots you have taken at which focal lengths. Then compare the number of shots with your 14-45 fully zoomed in (there is likely to be a big peak here, from when you've wanted more reach but that's as far as the lens will go), verses the shots between 17mm and 25mm. This should give you an idea if a wide or long prime would more suit your shooting style.

    I did this recently, and found my most common FL was 22mm (very close to the m43 sensor diagonal, i.e true normal) with a gradual drop off shorter and longer than this. So the 17mm would suit me better out of these 2 lenses.
  8. PantelisMor

    PantelisMor Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2013
    Thx alot for your advise, nice application... The winner of results was 14mm. I think my choice must be 17mm 1.8. :smile::smile::smile:

    however 45μμ 1,8 samples are amazing.....
  9. pictor

    pictor Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jul 17, 2010
    That's the kind of questions only the asker can give an answer to. 17mm and 45mm are very different focal lengths and it completely depends on what you like to shoot. Does it really help you, that at the moment my 45mm stays on my E-M5 most of the time? Other people love 17mm as much and others 25mm.
  10. SteveF

    SteveF New to Mu-43

    Oct 14, 2012
    Take the oly 45 .....you will not be disappointed in my opinion.
  11. PantelisMor

    PantelisMor Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2013
    I think i will buy for now the 17mm and later 45mm or 75mm if i have the money..

    I want to ask you something else very important, will i see diffetrents between panasonic 14-45 and oly 17mm in this focal length ?? What differents ?

    Do you think it deserve to buy 2 primes for example 17mm and 45mm and sell the pana 14-45 ??
  12. riverr02

    riverr02 Mu-43 Veteran

    May 2, 2011
    New York
    Real Name:
    If it were me, I'd keep a zoom and get the 17mm, then save to buy the 75mm (it's really that good). For me, I like having a zoom around for those times when I'm travelling with family and need various focal lengths. I stuck with the 12-50 kit lens until the 12-35 switched. That is currently the best zoom in its range, and some say is sharper than the 17mm primes from Olympus- albeit with a little over a stop penalty aperture-wise. And it's weather-resistant (as is the 12-50) which is another significant plus.
  13. Bravin Neff

    Bravin Neff Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 25, 2011
    Real Name:
    Bravin Neff
    The 17mm is a far better choice in terms of practicality. Almost every point and shoot and camera phone is centered on the 17mm FOV or close to it, and for this reason: there are very few real world shots that can't be taken with the 17mm, but there are plenty of shots that cannot be taken with the 45mm.
  14. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 7, 2010
    Tough question that is asked all too often with details lacking from the asker. That doesn't limit the answers though!

    For most people, the 17mm is more useful. You've confirmed that applies to you as well PantelisMor.

    I think there is general agreement that the IQ of the 45/1.8 is better than the 17/1.8, but the difference is not so large that most people will care. Maybe it would be better to consider how the 17 compares to your 14-45 at wide end and how the 45 compares to your 14-45 at long end. That difference may be a bit more pronounced, in favor of the 45/1.8 I think.

    In terms of bokeh, I don't have an opinion on the 17 or 45 being "better", but you can get more background blur with the longer focal length lens, so the 45 would be the choice in that regard.

    I guess I'd go with the 45/1.8, as long as you are OK with using the 14-45. If you really want the prime to use most of the time then the versatility of the 17/1.8 makes more sense.
  15. Azimuth

    Azimuth Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 12, 2012
    Thornbury, Victoria

    The 17mm for general photography, places, people & things.

    The 45mm for flattering people photography.
  16. PantelisMor

    PantelisMor Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 14, 2013
    I bought used 17 mm yesterday for 400,00 euro...i will tell you my impressions when i receive the lens... Thx a lot....
  17. metalmania

    metalmania Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 19, 2012
    Totally agree. There is no need for 17/1.8 if you have the 14-45 but 45/1.8 will become handy.
  18. brutto

    brutto Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 17, 2011
    Since you already have the Pana 14-45 which is an excellent lens, I suggest you go for the 45/1.8. I find the extra depth of field control more useful at this focal length. Now I come to think about it, this is the combo I have, E-P3+14-45+45.

    *** Edit: Ooops, sorry just noticed your post saying you went for the 17mm. Good choice :2thumbs: ***
  19. Microman

    Microman Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 16, 2012
    You can get both and add an extra camera body so you can quickly switch between them.
  20. TetonTom

    TetonTom Mu-43 Regular

    Even though I don't use it as much as some do, I can't imagine NOT owning the 45. It's my only prime, and to me it's a logical choice for a wide aperture lens; more often than not, I'm not using the lens in low light, but for a DOF effect. In a wide or "normal" focal length I'm usually trying to create a more substantial DOF, so in essence the wider aperture is not so important.
    For me, low light usually calls for higher ISO and not a faster lens. I routinely shoot my EM5 at 1600 without worries.
    I also have found that I do hardly any shooting between 17 and 45, so my zoom + prime kit now is 9-18 + 45...