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Olympus wide-angles on Gf1/Gh1 : 9-18mm vs. m9-18mm

Discussion in 'This or That? (MFT only)' started by edwinthebuffalo, Jun 14, 2010.

  1. edwinthebuffalo

    edwinthebuffalo New to Mu-43

    3
    Jun 7, 2010
    I've tried looking for info on this on the forum, but couldn't find exactly what i was looking for - so here's the question:

    I'm currently using the 7-14mm Panasonic (which is fantastic), but would like to have the ability to use filters on a number of occasions - so i'm thinking of switching to one of the Olympus 9-18mm lenses. The options would be:

    - Olympus 9-18mm 4/3, with 4/3 to m4/3 adapter
    or
    - the newer Olympus 9-18mm m4/3 'collapsible'

    I've heard that the 9-18mm 'focuses very slowly' on the Panasonic cameras - but does this apply to both the 4/3 and the m4/3 versions? and how much slower is it than the 7-14mm (i.e. is it marginally slower, or annoyingly slow)?

    for those of you who have tried both, is one significantly better on the Panasonic body?

    The need to buy a 4/3->m4/3 adapter is not a problem, since i'm thinking of getting such an adapter anyway to use the Oly 50mm/2 macro.

    Any comments would be much appreciated.
     
  2. Brian Mosley

    Brian Mosley Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Hi edwin,

    the ZD 9-18 does focus relatively slowly compared to the Lumix 7-14 and mZD 9-18 due to the different focusing motors and arrangement of focusing elements.

    I think you'd be better going with the mZD 9-18.

    Unfortunately, the Panasonic bodies are incapable of auto focusing the ZD 50mm f2.

    Cheers

    Brian
     
  3. edwinthebuffalo

    edwinthebuffalo New to Mu-43

    3
    Jun 7, 2010
    Hi Brian,

    thanks for your swift response.

    I'll wait to get my hands on the mZD 9-18mm then, and give that a try. I will not need an adapter for that, to fit on a GF1 - is that correct?

    I presume the optical quality (on what i've read on this forum) is not much worse on the mZD collapsible, than the non-micro 9-18?

    Regarding the 50mm/2 - that's a real bummer, I somehow forgot that. I was really hoping that this would AF on the Panasonics, since I didn't really much enjoy the Panasonic macro lens (wish it was f2 as well) :(
     
  4. Brian Mosley

    Brian Mosley Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    That's correct - as a native m4/3rds lens, the mZD 9-18 would fit straight onto your GF1... it may even autofocus, being a new development.

    Apparently, the optical quality is at least as good (maybe better) as the ZD 9-18... although I'll be able to confirm that in person soon, hopefully.

    Do you have the Panasonic 45mm f2.8 already? I haven't tried that one, but it's obviously a lot smaller than the ZD 50mm f2 with 4/3rds adapter.

    Cheers

    Brian
     
  5. edwinthebuffalo

    edwinthebuffalo New to Mu-43

    3
    Jun 7, 2010
    thanks brian - do let me know when you find out about the mZD 9-18mm, i would be very interested (as i'm sure would be many other forum members).

    regarding the macro - no, i don't own one yet, the f2.8 is putting me off a bit (would really prefer f2) as well as the price tag.

    since the Panasonic G series is my second system (for travel/light work), i'm not sure how much i would need a macro lens that doesn't do great portraits. If i really need to do seirous macro shooting, the nikon 70-180 macro comes out - but that's not really viable for travelling.
     
  6. Jonas B

    Jonas B Guest

    91
    Apr 23, 2010
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    I thought it was the other way round? Maybe wishful thinking, I haven't tried the lenses at the same time but decided to keep my old Zuiko 9-18 as the M.Zuiko, from reports, isn't as good, from reports and reviews.

    It would be nice to see some direct comparisons. Maybe the differences are small enough not to really matter?

    regards,

    Jonas
     
  7. PeterB666

    PeterB666 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    780
    Jan 14, 2010
    Tura Beach, Australia
    Peter
    You might like to provide some links and references for the "from reports, isn't as good, from reports and reviews." as all the reviews I have read are that the two Olympus lenses are pretty much line-ball for IQ and that is good as the older lens punched well above its weight.

    The Olympus M.Zuiko 9-18mm is probably one of the fastest focusing lenses out for the Olympus PEN. I would like MF to be a little better as there is very little movement between infinity and close focus - it can be difficult to manually focus accurately but due to the wide angle's depth of field, that rarely presents a problem.
     
  8. Jonas B

    Jonas B Guest

    91
    Apr 23, 2010
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    I'm sorry for my sloppy language. Well, I read words written by different folks at forums. I try not to put to much weight to that but what I have read tells me that the old bigger design probably holds up better towards the edges and corners. To me that is important with an ultra wide lens (as opposed to, for example, a portrait lens).

    I went and had a look at the DPR lens test widgets putting the two versions side by side. The differences shown aren't big but still, better borders and corners with the 4/3 version. That may or may not be important. If you print big it will certainly show.

    To this one can add several reports telling us about de-centered lens elements in the micro model. The size and AF speed (if the landscape moves fast) are in favour for the ยต4/3 version of course, but I wouldn't recommend buying one unless the buyer is sure he/she will be happy with the performance, and the seller allows for a return should it be de-centered. This is not a cheap lens.

    regards,

    Jonas