OMD em-10: what lenses for a new dad?

Discussion in 'This or That?' started by Roast, May 21, 2014.

  1. Roast

    Roast Mu-43 Rookie

    May 21, 2014
    Hello Everyone,

    My wife and I recently had a baby girl (she is now 4 weeks old) and I am looking to get a new camera to capture our experiences. I currently have a canon g10, but I am looking something that will be a little more versatile. After quite a bit of deliberation, I think that I have decided to go with a em-10. It seems to fits my needs as a beginning photographer and will give me room to grow. What I am having a tough time deciding is what lenses to get. My plan is to get a few lenses that will work well for when she is young, then branch out once she gets older. My budget is ~$1000 dollars. The options I am deliberating:

    - buying the em-10 kit
    - buying the em-10 body and buying a 17mm 1.8 with the lens promo
    - buying a em-10 body and a 20 mm 1.7 (used) and will be able to afford another lens sooner
    - I am open to other suggestions.

    Any feedback is greatly appreciated:)

  2. PatrickNSF

    PatrickNSF Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 30, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    Real Name:
    I prefer the 25/1.8 over the 17/1.8 for this kind of photography. If possible, consider the E-M10 with the kit zoom and the 25/1.8 using the current lens promotion.
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  3. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 12, 2012
    Real Name:
    Get 20 1.7 and later on the olympus 45 when your kid is getting older and faster :) this is my two lens setup and i love it
  4. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Real Name:
    Congratulations on your little girl!

    I wouldn't get the 20/1.7 without trying it first. Many (most?) people find the slow autofocus in lower light to be a major headache. It's a nice lens otherwise, but it does have that flaw.

    The 17/1.8 is a good option - it's not quite as svelte or as sharp as the 20/1.7 but it's a lot faster at focusing. The 25/1.8 is the other good option in this range. The 17/1.8 is wider, which makes it a bit easier to use in small spaces, but it'll also give more perspective distortion when used up close (edges of the frame will look more stretched).

    However, I'd make sure to get the kit lens too. No, it's not spectacular in terms of sharpness, and it won't be as useful indoors or in low light, but for convenience and practicality it's a no-brainer. There are lots of situations where the ability to zoom in and out will be quite valuable and the prime lenses just won't give you that.
  5. DoofClenas

    DoofClenas Who needs a Mirror!

    Nov 9, 2012
    Traverse City, MI
    Real Name:
    I shot the EPM2 with a 20mm for the longest time...while I love the compact size and the sharpness of the lens, the AF was very frustrating at times. I'd recommend the 17 1.8 and 25 the 1.8 or 1.4.
    The 45 is awesome too, but I think I'd start with those other two first.
  6. jziegler

    jziegler Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 15, 2012
    Salem County, New Jersey
    Real Name:
    Don't forget to consider the Sigma lenses, perhaps the best value m43 lenses available. Until I got my 45mm, the Sigma 30mm was my most used lens for photos of my son (now 22 months old). I also use the Panasonic 14mm a good bit. Now that I have the 45mm, I use it more than anything else, but I think something wider is important first.

    The Sigma lenses have fast focusing and a moderate aperture. Wider aperture than the kit lenses, but not as wide as most of the other primes. But for the price, they really are worth a look.
  7. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 12, 2012
    Real Name:
    Ok I give my p20 and O45 setup more info; p20 is a little slow yes. But at static subjects its no problem. And kids are not always running around:) but when the do u just use the o45.

    M43 strong card is size and P20 is the realdeal in that area.
  8. vbi

    vbi Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 15, 2014
    Cape Town
    I would take the kit lens and the O45 for beautiful portraits with nice separation from the background. While the O25 is a nice lens it cannot give you the same pop as the O45.
  9. Uncle Frank

    Uncle Frank Photo Enthusiast

    Jul 26, 2012
    San Jose, CA
    Real Name:
    I have both the O25/1.8 and the O45/1.8, and their their "pop factor" is quite similar.


    The P20/1.7 is a terrific lens. It's been my mainstay for 2 years, but I've recently upgraded to the O25/1.8. Once your baby becomes a toddler, you'll appreciate the faster focusing.
  10. D MATIC

    D MATIC Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 18, 2012
    I agree with this. I just had my second daughter and my only regret was not getting the O45mm sooner. When they are babies, they are small and you will be getting closer to them to take a photo which introduces barrel distortion and it will make their face bulge. The O45mm lets you be farther away (which reduces barrel distortion) and the 45 gives a much more pleasing out of focus background. Your kids are only this age once, def recommend the O45mm.
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  11. esnift

    esnift Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 17, 2013
    Boston, MA
    Real Name:
    I was in your same situation a little while back. I ended up going with the 20mm 1.7 first, but then sold the 20 when I came across a second hand 17mm 1.8 for a great deal locally. It was perfect timing because my daughter had just started being more mobile and the slow AF was a shot killer (I also found the slim pancake awkward to MF). Now that I have enjoyed the 17 I wouldn't go back to the 20. I feel they are very close image quality wise and I much prefer the styling and crazy fast/accurate AF of the 17.
  12. karma

    karma Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 19, 2012
    Los Angeles
    Real Name:
    I agree with the general consensus to avoid the P20. I had a P20 when my daughter was born earlier this year, and the slow AF hunting was driving me nuts. Most of our photos are taken in our apartment where we don't get much natural light during the day.

    I picked up the O25 as a replacement and love it so far. I also have an O45, but it's a little long for most of my shooting, which is done while I'm interacting with the baby. The 25 FL seems to fit really well.

    Not to hijack this thread, but I was wondering as an owner of the O25, does the O17 provide enough of a perspective difference to be worth owning as well? I find the P14 tends to be a little too wide, and I do miss the perspective that the P20 provided.
  13. gotak

    gotak Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 28, 2012
    I took all of my 1 yr and 4 month old's photo with an em5 and a 25 1.4. It's i think 2k shots and counting.
  14. orfeo

    orfeo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 27, 2013
    I love the 20mm focal length, it's just magical and refreshing. I never been a fan of the old plain 17mm FOV but every individual has different tastes!
    You will do a lot of photography with that camera, not just kid picturing right?
    All the advice here is pretty good, and you won't go wrong with any of the above lenses.
    My take is:
    12mm f2 and 25mm f1.8 if you want Oly brandism
    15mm f1.7 (upcoming) nd 25mm f1.4 if you want something else.
    and dépends on your wallet 45mm f1.8 or 42.5mm f1.2.
  15. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    I would probably go with the body + Lumix 20mm/1.7, or if you rely more on AF then the body + m.Zuiko 17mm/1.8.
  16. Roast

    Roast Mu-43 Rookie

    May 21, 2014
    Thanks everyone for your replies. I will be using the camera for more than the baby, but right now she is the focus. I think that I will scratch the 20mm off the list as I had fears that It would be a bit slow. I am now going between the 25mm 1.8 with em-10 kit or the 17mm with em-10 body. They are both about the same price with the promo. The 45mm 1.8 will be a future purchase. Thanks again for the quick feedback and I would love to hear others views.

    Thanks again,

    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43
  17. PatrickNSF

    PatrickNSF Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 30, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    Real Name:
    Brent, one thing to keep in mind is that the 17mm/1.8 and 45mm/1.8 often show up as refurbs in the Olympus Outlet, and are sometimes available during the 20% promotions. That's how I picked up my 45mm/1.8. I haven't seen the 25mm/1.8 there, so it may be worth getting it as part of the rebate/discount deal when you purchase the E-M10.

    I'll also note that I purchased my first dSLR – a Canon 10D – soon after my son was born in 2002, followed by other dSLRs when he was young. I would have loved to have had something more compact like the E-M10 during these years.
  18. Art

    Art Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    PL25 should be your top priority. Perfect lens for kids. Forget P20 - unreliable focus in low light and perspective distortion. Your kid will grow up, you don't want to miss a chance to capture photos with outstanding Leica rendering. It is my most used lens on E-M10. IBIS works perfect for both stills and video with this lens.

    Sent from my iPhone using Mu-43
  19. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Real Name:
    Sean Rastsmith
    Not sure what everyone elses is, but my P20 is fast enough for me. Not lightning quick, but my 6mo. old doesnt move that fast.

    Sent from my LG-P769 using Mu-43 mobile app
  20. sircam1

    sircam1 Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2013
    I own the Oly 12, 17, 25, 45, 75 & 12-50 , using on an Em-5. Have tried a mates Pany 20. Recently also tried the PL25 when deciding on my Oly25. I got the EM-5 as my first Fathers Day present, and soon after preferred to use the Em5 over the 5DII & 7D with L lenses, I was impressed with the overall picture quality of the m4/3 lenses (maybe not so with the 12-50).
    My son is now 29mths old and all the Caon gear is gone. My photography is mainly family, events, travel, street so sable in a bit of everything, yet good at nothing. So take he below as you wish...
    If I had to do it all again now & focus was photos of my son: EM-10 over em5. Due to price. ALS newer processing ability. 3 v 5 axis IS don't think would be material difference and weather sealing no biggie for pics of your baby. Compactness means it's even easier to carry it in diaper bag or pram. I would start with the 17mm. I have only had the 25 for a couple of weeks now & really liking it too. Jus the 17 is a bit more compact & feels sturdier. Both allow you to get more in (the difference is noticeable)when in confined spaces. 12mm gets a bit more distortion when up close. 45mm comes into it's own if you have the space & want that subject isolation up close. It's my favourite to take when going to the park with my son.. It's also my favourite from a "bang for buck" perspective.

    Sent from my iPhone using Mu-43 mobile app
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