Opinions wanted: swap 17mm f2.8 for 20mm on EP-1?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by agentlossing, Oct 10, 2014.

  1. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing
    So I've been pondering what to do with my EP1 system. I like it a lot, for the classic 12MP Olympus look to the jpegs and the great ISO 100 performance. The major downside is the quality of the LCD, which makes it nearly useless in my experience for manually focusing. No biggie, I stick with the GX1+LVF2 for my legacy lenses. I would however like to maximize the quality of this particular package, keeping around the same focal length so I can continue to use the VF1 optical viewfinder. I definitely still enjoy the little 17mm pancake, but is there really any reason not to sell it and upgrade to a 20mm f1.7?

    I also considered the Sigma 19mm, which I assume would still be close enough for the VF1 to work nicely, but it would kill the compactness of the package and wouldn't provide me any larger aperture. Thoughts?
     
  2. Wisertime

    Wisertime Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 6, 2013
    Philly
    Steve
    Consider the 17 1.8 or the 14 2.5 too (if compact is important). The 17 2.8 isn't a terrible lens, but depends on the subject.

    I agree that the LCD sucked...very tough in bright daylight too. I did like the JPGs too, but using manual focus adapted lenses was a big challenge. I pretty much sold it for that reason and it had a slight shutter lag (or seemed like it). I know the 45 helped out the IQ and lower ISO use on the EP1 when I had it, but I never tried (or didn't have) some of the other better lenses at the time. EM5 got all the attention. I'm wondering how much slower the 20mm would focus on the EP1...fast focus on those early lenses wasn't a strong suit. Ok for landscapes I'd say, but not for anything requiring quick response. I never used the VF1..thought it was useless.
     
  3. nstelemark

    nstelemark Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 28, 2013
    Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada
    Larry
    I really like the 20 1.7 on my E-PM1. As an example:

    P7260228.
     
  4. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    P20 is a great lens. Might be a tad slower AF than the 17, but it's a much better (and wider aperture) lens, without much loss on size.

    A bonus -- if you are using the Oly 17mm viewfinder, it actually is sized to the P20 better than Oly's own 17, IMO.

    Get the P20 first and compare, or even keep the 17 (it's not worth much), but the P20 is worth it, IMO.
     
  5. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing
    The 17mm f1.8 isn't really an option - too expensive for me. I can justify a used 20mm if I sell the 17mm f2.8, but the 1.8 model is both too expensive and larger than I want. I've owned the 14mm, never really took to it. I don't want to regress to that 28mm FOV, I much prefer something around 35mm-40mm.
     
  6. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    I use the 17 2.8 with the VF1 optical finder. The 20 is sharper across the frame but I think the 17 is good enough the the 12 MP resolution. The EP1 is nice with the optical finder.
     
  7. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing
    Yeah, I'm not knocking the overall rendering of the 17mm pancake. However the 20mm would give me the option of shooting ISO 100 in more situations with its larger aperture, which was one of the reasons I started thinking about it.

    I really like the VF1, and I use it for the overall character of the package. EP1 heft and classic handling, 35mm-ish FOV, optical vf for framing. It's just fun to use!


    GX1•EP1•GF3•17/2.8•30/2.8
     
  8. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    I should point out that I also have the 20 which is a great lens. I just keep it on a different body.
     
  9. madmaxmedia

    madmaxmedia Mu-43 Veteran

    335
    Feb 20, 2010
    I don't really see any downsides to switching to the 20mm, since your budget affords it.

    Much better optically and faster. The AF speed for both lenses is relatively slow, so not a big difference in usage compared to the advantages.

    That E-P1/20mm combo cost quite a bit of money back in the day. ;-)
     
  10. svenkarma

    svenkarma Mu-43 Top Veteran

    566
    Feb 5, 2013
    mark evans
    I would try the 20 first, because you might feel about it the way you felt about the 14.
     
  11. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing

    Hmm, care to elaborate?
     
  12. svenkarma

    svenkarma Mu-43 Top Veteran

    566
    Feb 5, 2013
    mark evans
    You seem quite happy with the 17. The 14 (which I like) has an imho not dissimilar rendering to the 20 (which I don't like).
     
  13. Edmunds

    Edmunds Mu-43 Regular

    158
    Oct 16, 2012
    I would switch in a heartbeat. The panasonic 20mm is the best m4/3 lens - the perfect combination of size, sharpness, and brightness.
     
  14. jssaraiva

    jssaraiva Mu-43 Regular

    155
    Jan 26, 2013
    Porto, Portugal
    José Saraiva
    Why not the 17mm 1.8? These days they sell used at reasonable prices. Maybe people moving to 15mm 1,7... Perfect match to the VF1 and a significant upgrade on speed (both focus speed and aperture).
     
  15. Larry H-L

    Larry H-L Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Aug 6, 2013
    Ohio, USA
    Larry
    I don't know if the EP-1 will accept an EVF, but if it will, that could be an answer to your focus troubles. I might try that option before a different lens. I think I've seen VF-3s for as low as $99 new.
     
  16. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing
    Jssaraiva, it's still over $100 more used than the 20mm. Larry, it won't, unfortunately. I think I might give the 20mm a whirl...
    GX1•EP1•GF3•17/2.8•30/2.8
     
  17. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    Don't sell it.
    Buy a 20mm anyway, maybe spend a huge £80 on a second e-P1/e-P2 body ...

    My e-P1 keeps the 17mmF2.8,
    My e-P2 with VF-2 is for manual focus lenses,
    the 20mm sits on an e-pm2 mostly for low-light no-flash.
    The 20mm isn't an upgrade from the 17mm, more like a sidegrade with better aperture, better shrpness but a loss in "dealing with light", hard to explain.
     
  18. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing
    That's pretty cryptic, can you help me understand what you mean?

    And I don't really have the budget to own both at the moment, unless I can "sell" the addition as a second walk around lens for the GX1 my wife likes to use. Hmm...
    GX1•EP1•GF3•17/2.8•30/2.8
     
  19. BLT

    BLT Mu-43 Regular

    187
    Jan 13, 2013
    London
    James
    20mm is SUCH a great lens. That lens on my E-P1 for 3 years made me so happy so often!! The 20mm on the E-P1 doesn't take pictures, it Paints them.

    The 20mm lens is the reason I am in the M43 system. If it didn't exist I would have never bought the E-P1, and if it disappeared right now, I would probably buy fuji.

    Don't get me wrong, I love Micro43 as a system, it was just that the existence of the small and wonderful 20mm was/is the deciding factor.

    Get It Get it!!