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Panasonic 20mm f1.7 - hood or no hood?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by ean10775, Jun 18, 2012.

  1. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Eric
    So after a lot of thought I've decided to keep my 20mm f1.7 despite its slow focusing and tendency to miss focus on my E-PL1. I'm keeping it because I like the FL and when it does focus in time and in the right place, the images are simply wonderful.

    I'm now debating whether or not to get a hood for it. I typically use hoods with all my DSLR lenses and with legacy glass on my E-PL1 to prevent flare and improve contrast, however, a hood with the 20mm f1.7 defeats some of the advantage of its pancake design. How much difference does a hood make with the 20mm in terms of preventing flare and improving/maintaining contrast? I'd prefer not to use a hood with the lens (I'm not worried about protecting the front element), but will get one if it really does make a difference in the images. Any experiences?
     
  2. bob madison

    bob madison Mu-43 Regular

    62
    May 23, 2012
  3. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Eric
  4. bob madison

    bob madison Mu-43 Regular

    62
    May 23, 2012
    Yes. The hood folds all the way back on the lens.
     
  5. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    I use hoods on all my dSLR lenses and µ/43 lenses. The exception being my two pancakes, the 14mm and 20mm. I just think that adding a hood sorta self-defeats the principle idea of a pancake. Sure, hoods are helpful and can/will improve one's images ... Sure, hoods can look cool especially the retro-rangefinder vented hoods ... Sure, hoods have added value by protecting the front element ... But, (the big but), all those positives, for me, get trumped by the question "... Then why did I get a pancake if I un-pancake it with a hood?"

    Gary
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Eric
    That's what I was getting at - I know all the advantages of hoods and use them on my other lenses, but I don't want to use one on the 20mm for exactly the reasons you mentioned. I guess my real question isn't 'do people use hoods?', its 'is there noticeable contrast loss if a hood isn't used with this lens?'
     
  7. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    I second the recommendation of the collapsible rubber hood with the P20. It doesn't really impact the size (when collapsed it only a couple of millimeters of depth).

    Here are [post=224871]some images[/post] that another user shared of his 20mm with the rubber hood.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Eric
    Thanks. To me, even folded back, that defeats the purpose of a pancake lens. Still, if it really makes a noticeable difference in the images I'll consider it.
     
  9. bwidjaja

    bwidjaja Mu-43 Regular

    67
    May 30, 2012
    Agree with the hood for a pancake. What I use is a 46-37mm step down ring which serves as a hood and protection with no vignetting. Forgot the website that recommended it, but you can get it cheaply. You can have a hood and a pancake too... ;)
     
  10. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    You're certainly entitled to your opinion but I'm curious as to how you feel the purpose of the pancake is defeated. The additional depth is minimal when the hood is folded back (no more than a standard filter). The only downsides that I have encountered after using this type of hood for a couple of months are twofold:
    1. the rubber sometimes "grabs" a bit when trying to pocket the camera, and
    2. I occasionally flip the hood open before I pull of the lens cap, which makes the cap a bit harder to remove, although it can still be done without flipping the hood closed
    Other than these minor annoyances (the second of which can be attributed to user error), I don't have any gripes with the rubber hood and I feel like it does a decent job of reducing lens flare and also adds a sort of "bumper" to protect the lens.
     
  11. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Eric
    Simply, when the hood is extended, it essentially doubles the length of the lens. Part of the appeal of a pancake for me is that in use it is very discreet. It certainly can be debated, and any m43 camera with a 20mm+hood is still going to be more discreet than say a DLSR with a small 50mm lens, but its still bigger than I'd like. If there isn't a substantial improvement in contrast with the hood, I prefer the small size, that's all.

    Many people feel that the design of Canon's EF 50mm f1.8 II, with its recessed front element basically negates the need for a hood in most circumstances. I'm wondering what people's experiences are with the 20mm. Do people get noticeably better photos with the hood or is it only a minor improvement in some situations.

    I certainly don't doubt the advantages of the folding hood over a rigid one and it is indeed compact while being stored.
     
  12. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    Into or approaching a bright light source, sure, a hood would help, but I don't feel I'm trashing a significant number of images shooting sans hood. When I feel it has become a significant issue I'll pop for one of those sexy vented rangefinder hoods and pretend I have a Leica.

    G
     
  13. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    I think any hood on most any camera/lens takes it up a notch as far as discreet goes. Any dSLR gets people looking, and gripped dSLR has the entire block swivel-necking, a tiny camera like the GF/Pen series gets down into a tourist P&S, but a hood knocks it out of P&S (of course - IMO).

    G
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    Thanks for the further explanation. I agree that if you're going for "discreet" then you should probably forgo the hood (although you could just leave it retracted in that case). As Gary noted, you're not likely to lose much IQ by going hoodless.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    Anyone wanting discreet is typically for Street Photography, a little lens flare ... a little gritty light quality may even enhance a street shot.

    G
     
    • Like Like x 2
  16. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Eric
    I was reading on another forum how someone got the new Canon EF 40mm f2.8 to be able to shoot more discreetly on the street with his 5DII - the opposite happened as people were constantly looking at this camera with a stubby little lens and asking what it was because it looked so odd.

    I think I'll probably just forego the lens hood then.
     
  17. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    Trying to be "discreet" with ANY lens on a 5DII would seem difficult, but it's interesting that the smaller lens brought more attention.

    P.S. In searching for an image of the 5D with the pancake mounted, I came across this, which I had to chuckle at:
    [​IMG]
     
  18. SimonL

    SimonL Mu-43 Regular

    97
    Apr 15, 2009
    NW England
    The Panny 20mm is one of the most flare resistant lenses I've ever used.

    I too have hoods for most of my other FF lenses but have never seen the need to buy one for this lens. Contrast stays well within acceptable limits even directly into fairly fierce 'solar opposition'
     
  19. drewbot

    drewbot Mu-43 Top Veteran

    702
    Oct 21, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    Contrast is perfectly fine without a hood.
     
  20. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    No hood. The defense rests.

    G