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OMD Lens help

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Dan1942, Apr 27, 2012.

  1. Dan1942

    Dan1942 Mu-43 Rookie

    Apr 25, 2012
    I am new to the whole M 4/3 thing and now have a OMD EM5 (black) with the 14-42mm kit lens on the way (should be shipping today).
    I need some suggestions on lenses I have a budget of about 2600 (including the Camera) money that I had put aside for a Canon 5D II. Here is what I was thinking.
    12mm F2 Oly
    45mm 1.8 Oly
    Plus I am trying to find the grip in stock somewhere. That puts me at around 2600. I am looking at mostly taking pictures of my kids 5 and 7 their various sports and landscape as well. I also will trying to do some larger prints with it as I have a epson pro 7900.
    The big question is the 12mm at 800.00 worth it compared to maybe getting 2 other primes for that amount of money?
    THanks in advance for your time and help!
  2. everythingsablur

    everythingsablur Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 4, 2010
    Toronto, ON
    Many people consider the 12 one of the best lenses in the platform, up there work the 20 and the PL25. Is it worth $800? Depends if you really value a pretty fast wide angle prime.

    If you don't need to be that wide, you can also go with the 14mm f/2.5 for really cheap, then get another lens as well, such as the aforementioned 20 or PL25.
  3. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    The 12 is a good lens, but the 12-50 kit lens appears decent at the wide end. The main advantages of the 12/2 are wide aperture and fancy manual focus mechanism.

    My recommendations:
    -telephoto zoom (Olympus 40-150 or Panasonic 45-200) - reach past 45mm will help for kids and sports, and these are reasonably-priced lenses
    -fast normal (Panasonic 20/1.7 or 25/1.4) - closer quarters or indoors with the kids

  4. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    Yeah it well worth it for the 12mm but you also need to get the hood and a decent polarizer if you want to get the most from the camera. Since you are printing large I take it you're shooting raw right? If you're going all in then go all in. :smile:

    Now that we have a camera such as the OMD in the system high quality optics is playing a more important roll then ever. You will see a big difference with the 12mm especially when you shoot at f/4 of f/5.6. Same goes with the 45mm 1.8.

    Both these lenses are the sharpest I've own and I owned plenty of optics in my time.
  5. bitmatt

    bitmatt Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 7, 2012
    I have & love both the Oly lenses you are eyeing. I also highly recommend the Panasonic 20mm for your midrange lens. It is small & sharp. It makes for a great "walking around" lens.
  6. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    Hey, Dan. Welcome to the forum! Based on your requirements and budget, I would recommend going with the 14, 20 (or 25), depending on which you can find) and the Oly 45.

    The 20 is a fantastic lens. The only downside on the 20 is that, compared to the latest m4/3 lenses, focus speed is a bit slower. I have noticed when trying to keep track of fast moving younger kids, it struggles compared to the other m4/3 lenses. If you are also getting the Panasonic 14mm and Oly 45, they can do the kid focus thing just fine, so not really a big deal. On landscapes, 40mm it isn't a traditional field of view, but Tanngrisnir posted a cool link or two with photos using this lens for that purpose:


    The 14 is super tiny and the focus speed is actually quite fast. It is a tad less wide than the 12 and I have found that its field of view can serve a bit better as an all a rounder. It will stillwork really well for landscapes. The Oly 12 will pull away in the corners when stopped down, and I really love the field of view, but if I had to choose, I would much rather have both the 14 and 20 (or 25) than just the Olympus 12. Lens resell values remain pretty high, so you can always sell of the 14mm in the future for minimal loss, if you decide you want to move up (or I guess down) to the 12.
  7. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    Or if you don't need it that fast, you can get the 9-18mm Oly zoom or the 7-14 Panasonic zoom. I've got the 7-14, and it's capable of excellent images; sharp and contrasty. And a true ultra-wide is capable of very dramatic images.

    Why do you think you need the grip? I'd try the camera without it first, and unless you find the handling to be a real problem you can put that $300 toward lenses, or travel to someplace to take pictures.
  8. everythingsablur

    everythingsablur Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 4, 2010
    Toronto, ON
    Agreed. I think the 7-14 is a fantastic lens, and I find myself being the most intrigued and challenged when shooting with it. I know my low "keeper ratio" with the lens is completely the fault of my abilities, and not the lens. UWAs are hard to figure out...
  9. thearne3

    thearne3 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 28, 2010
    Redding, CT USA
    I haven't seen many who recommend a polarizer so generally, Giulio, could you expand on that comment? Is this specific to the WA lens, all lenses? Do you recommend linear or circular? This is an area of total ignorance for me...don't mean to sidetrack the thread! :smile:
    • Like Like x 1
  10. The one lens I look forward to using more than any other on the E-M5 is the PL25/1.4, whether it rattlesnakes or not.
  11. jcurious

    jcurious Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 14, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    If you shoot things that scatter a lot of light or is partially reflective, you can use a polarizer to really clean it up. And, in some cases "see thru" that reflected light. Photos that involve clouds, lakes, and glass are all good candidates.

    random link I googled:
    All about Polarizers - Linear and Circular
  12. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    Although I don't use a polariser for all subjects I do find them very useful to get the best color posible and they are very helpful when you want to shoot video with a larger f-stop.

    Although I understand that you can use linear polarizers I choose circular just out of habit. The AF sensors with the Pen and OMD allow you to use either but a camera like a 5D can only use circular since the linar polarizer will interfere with the autofocus.

    The link that jcurious posted looks like a good one explaining the benefits of polarization but I suggest if you do get a polarizer get a good one and get a slimline. I use either B+W or Heliopan both are expensive but very much worth it. The quality of the glass is the same as those used inside a lens so they are less likely to cause flare robbing your capture of contrast. The slim filters are thiner and less likely to vignette your image but you can't stack them and I'm ok with that since I don't stack unless I'm using gel filters.

    Also consider that any good optics could last the rest of your life. I own many polarizers some very old but they still last because they are made to last.

    I'll probably get into more detail on my blog in the future as I'm kind of a filter snob. I also don't use any UV filters on my glass but its all personal preference.

    Hope this helps. :smile:
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Dan1942

    Dan1942 Mu-43 Rookie

    Apr 25, 2012
    Thanks for all the replies and help!! I think I am going to go with the 45mm 1.8 and the 12mm 2.0 and in a few months pick the PL25 and maybe some longer zoom like the oly 75mm -300mm. I am pretty excited to try something different then a DSLR and am hoping I will actually carry the EM5 with me where a my DLSR always stays home ( I hate lugging it around).

    I am really hoping I can print at least 16X20" with it on my epson.

    Thanks again!
  14. Dan1942

    Dan1942 Mu-43 Rookie

    Apr 25, 2012
    @Gsciorio Which of these are a slimline filter for the 12mm f2


    Thanks for your time!
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