Panasonic 20mm F1.7 II on OMD

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by bmacw, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. bmacw

    bmacw Mu-43 Regular

    28
    May 30, 2012
    It seems like I'm the only person on earth that's interested in the performance of the new 20mm lens. Everyone is talking about the EP5 and the GX7... and that's all they talk about.

    I shot with the original v1 of the 20mm for 1 day on my OMD, immediately returned it the next day. The focusing speed is just ridiculous. I don't mind if it's a bit slow, but the lens would hunt for focus a lot. I'm a very experienced user of mirrorless cameras and using single AF point, I know where to point to help the camera's CD focus system. But to me, that speed was just unacceptable especially because it's hard to use manual focus override on the pan cake lens.

    Part of the appeal of the current generation of the m4/3 system is the faster AF speed compare to NEX and other APS-C systems. So I was not willing to deal with that.

    Anyways long story short. I got my v2 lens today from Amazon. It's quieter, but still the same slow performance in AF.

    If you are happy with the speed, good for you. But please don't be delusional about it and say it's normal. Because, it has to be the worst current generation lens in terms of AF speed.

    I had high hopes for this version, but it's going back in the box. Frankly this is quite a joke on Panasonic's part for releasing something with so little improvement. They could've had a real winner here.
     
  2. st3amco0ker

    st3amco0ker Mu-43 Rookie

    21
    Feb 7, 2012
    I pre-ordered it then cancelled after hearing about the focus issue was not fixed.
     
  3. CiaranCReilly

    CiaranCReilly Mu-43 Veteran

    485
    Oct 18, 2012
    Dublin
    Ciaran Reilly
    In fairness, I don't think there was one single rumour that AF speed was improved, and there are lots of users on here making really exceptional images with this lens, "delusional" is a little strong a term for those people who can make the best out of what they've got!! :) I have to say I don't find my V1 20mm hunts on my E-PM1 once it's in good light and I pick something sensible to let it centre-point AF on. Low light or poor contrast subjects are a different story, but in good light I find it's slow but not a hunter.
     
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  4. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    Larry
    I used my v1 20mm (Since replaced with the PL 25) for nightime street shooting in Thailand and Laos, and came away with lots of good captures. It always focused on a hot spoy for me with little difficulty. Sorry it does not meet your needs, but I,ve been taking pictures fo 40 years and I am not delusional when I know a lens works for me. I replaced it for the 25mm focal length, which I prefer.
     
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  5. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    Texas
    Since Panasonic never officially stated the lens had improved auto-focus speed, perhaps the "delusional" rests within those that misread/misinterpreted the press release...

    What they did promote was "..new lens system uses two aspherical lenses effectively to minimize both distortion and chromatic aberrations, achieving super high resolution from corner to corner. .."

    Nowhere did they state improved auto-focus speed...
     
  6. Zannh

    Zannh Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Aug 12, 2013
    Sydney, Australia
    Chris
    I think the more disappointing thing is that they don't seemed to have fixed the banding. Then again they never said they were so in that respect we shouldn't be to disappointed.
     
  7. bmacw

    bmacw Mu-43 Regular

    28
    May 30, 2012
    I used the word delusional to describe some people saying the v1 AF speed is perfectly fine/normal. Before someone was able to get the hands on the v2, the sentiment was 'oh, there was never anything wrong with my v1'.

    I'm not saying they said anything about AF. That's why I made this post, because the information was vague and not apparent, yet I'm entitled to have a little faith. (I was wrong)

    Whether or not subjectively, it's okay for one's needs is not the point here. But objectively, and comparatively this lens is very slow. And to have this much time to improve an otherwise fantastic lens but not come up with anything is almost like going backwards.

    It's like apple selling you iphone 3g 2 years later with a metal case instead of plastic.
     
  8. htc

    htc Mu-43 Top Veteran

    579
    Jan 11, 2011
    Finland
    Harry
    But I still think we all had high hopes instead having a new version just "painted and oiled". I did.
     
  9. bmacw

    bmacw Mu-43 Regular

    28
    May 30, 2012
    It's a new lens, it's just slower than just about current line of m4/3 lenses. That's a fact.
    I'm just trying to give everyone some quick info to put out their hope that this version might be faster.

    I can focus much faster with my M9, and my DP2M. And it's really not a matter of technique. All things being equal it's just slowER. (Don't mean it's slow for you)

    It's just when the AF gets in your way, and you don't have an effective way to MF quickly, it's annoying.

    As consumer, it's not too much for us to expect more. That's how market drives progress.
     
  10. bmacw

    bmacw Mu-43 Regular

    28
    May 30, 2012
    Exactly my point! Maybe I'm wrong, I was expecting too much.

    That's okay. I am wrong. I just want everybody else to know. Hopefully this info is useful.

    Maybe there is some magic on GX7, but on my OMD, I can't notice much difference from V1.
     
  11. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Don
    This is disappointing news.

    One certainly would expect an upgrade of this lens to include a significant improvement in AF speed and performance. The original was an awesome lens, simply needing an AF upgrade.

    I'll be keeping my original version and not bother upgrading to the II.
     
  12. stripedrex

    stripedrex Do or do not. There is no try.

    374
    Jun 8, 2012
    Long Island, NY
    Alex
    I've had the GH2 and now have a GX1 and OMD. For some reason the 20mm V1 is faster on the Panasonics and awful on the OMD. I also notice autofocus in video with the OMD in general is FAR worse with Panasonic lenses than Olympus ones and hunts a lot more than any of the panasonics (I've also had a few GFs) regardless of lens. So it seems when these lenses are developed they may be tweaking it for the slight differences in how the 2 companies think AF should work.
     
  13. bmacw

    bmacw Mu-43 Regular

    28
    May 30, 2012
    I suspect you are right. As disappointed as I am with panasonic, I can't imagine them releasing this lens with the GX7 as a kit if the focus was not at least a bit faster than what I'm experiencing on the OMD.

    My observation is from using the new lens on the OMD only.
     
  14. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    Can someone name a fast pancake prime with close focus abilities? I can't think of any other lens like the 20. It's a lens that compromises on focus speed to achieve it's size advantage. I think if they designed it with a silent focus motor and put it in a fixed focus sized lens barrel, it wouldn't be a pancake anymore!
     
  15. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    Texas
    How does the 14mm ƒ2.5 pancake compare :confused:
     
  16. htc

    htc Mu-43 Top Veteran

    579
    Jan 11, 2011
    Finland
    Harry
    You got that right. MUCH faster.
     
  17. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    Perhaps Panasonic just doesn't want to cannibalize the 25mm 1.4 sales? :tongue:
     
  18. Trankster

    Trankster Mu-43 Regular

    105
    Jan 19, 2013
    Irvine, CA
    Michael
    Before you write off the II, let's see some objective data. Also, is the slow focus something that is correctable with a firmware update?

    I received mine today and took some evening shots in low light to try it out-- cars, house, moon and trees, plus indoors of dogs, furniture etc. Most of the time the focus was acceptably fast, just not instant. I compared it to my 12-35mm indoors and focus speed seemed comparable. Night sky with moon and distant trees focused in under two seconds (my guess) whether I used the moon or distant trees as the focal point. A couple of times it searched when there was no distinct object to focus on, just a general background. It did focus instantly as soon as I moved the focus zone to a vertical line or clear object. I will use it on some travels in a couple of weeks and give it a more thorough go.

    Sent from my SM-T310 using Tapatalk 2
     
  19. htc

    htc Mu-43 Top Veteran

    579
    Jan 11, 2011
    Finland
    Harry
    Good point :smile:

    I have to highlight though that this is still a very good lens and I even like the new silver "paint".

    For me the focus is slow when I try to catch a moving object (child, pet?) with the not-so-good-tracking and full aperture. For landscapes and so on it doesn't matter.
     
  20. stripedrex

    stripedrex Do or do not. There is no try.

    374
    Jun 8, 2012
    Long Island, NY
    Alex
    What body are you shooting with?