Panasonic Leica DG Nocticron 42.5mm F1.2 Review Part II - Real-World Results

Sahib7

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Jan 25, 2013
Messages
48
Sorry!
I have to admit: my fault. Mea culpa....

Must have been confused ;)
 

Ricoh

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Nov 2, 2013
Messages
978
Location
UK
Real Name
Steve
Your photography is a class act Napier, I'm sure you could make a disposable point and shoot 'sing'.
This is your living, I take it, its your 'day time' job. Can I ask, do you use what's termed 'professional' cameras, i.e. full frame Nikon or Canon, or do you use M43 exclusively? I think there's a perception that pro means the large plastic systems mentioned, and M4/3 due to its diminutive size is something less. Do you encounter this at all with your clients?
 

MCMLXXIII AD

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Mar 18, 2014
Messages
50
Location
London
Real Name
Mahesh
Thank you!

And yes. It's hard to notice immediately without a direct comparison, but having shot with the 45mm for a couple of years now, I know what to expect from that lens in any scenario, and the Nocticron virtually always outdoes it. I did try comparing them directly several times just giving a look through live view, but it wasn't worth posting without matching things meticulously for every variable. This is also apparent if you compare the 45mm to the 75mm F1.8, but despite the superior contrast and overall quality of the 75mm, the two lenses still manage to render very similarly and give that "Olympus look". The Nocticron feels like a completely different type of lens, although which is better can be subjective. I also don't think a simple contrast/clarity adjustment in LR does the trick either; there are more subtleties to a lens' rendering than can be managed by simply manipulating things quickly in post.

Exactly my observation too, which is why I returned Nocticron. The extra weight and price (though it wasn't a consideration) wasn't worth over 45/1.8.
It might be if you are shooting professionally.

For my purpose I could live with slightly less contract OOC with 45/1.8, could increase that later in LR.
 

napilopez

Contributing Editor
Joined
Feb 21, 2012
Messages
826
Location
NYC Area
Real Name
Napier Lopez
Your photography is a class act Napier, I'm sure you could make a disposable point and shoot 'sing'.
This is your living, I take it, its your 'day time' job. Can I ask, do you use what's termed 'professional' cameras, i.e. full frame Nikon or Canon, or do you use M43 exclusively? I think there's a perception that pro means the large plastic systems mentioned, and M4/3 due to its diminutive size is something less. Do you encounter this at all with your clients?

Thank you! I do a number of other things--I like to keep myself busy and varied--but photography takes up most of my time when not studying physics, and is my primary source of income.

Nowadays I use Micro Four Thirds almost exclusively for my professional work. I started off on this system, but with an old G3 that just didn't provide the workhorse performance I needed, so I generally would either borrow a close friend's gear(usually a D7000, sometimes a T3i), or rent FF DSLR gear as needed. Since I purchased the E-M5, however, I've felt very little need for anything else, and when I want that FF "look" I'd just a rent one of the Voigtlanders. To give you an idea, I usually use a DSLR like the D7000 as a backup camera when shooting weddings, not the other way around. Then again, I've only been shooting for 2 years, and sustainably for about 1, so it's not like I'm the most experienced fellow.

There is indeed a perception that "bigger is better", and clients are often surprised by my tiny kit. However this has never been bad thing. Look at it this way; my clients hire me because they see my photos and like them. Almost all of my photos are shot with Micro Four Thirds gear. At the end of the day, they don't care about what I'm shooting with, as long as I give them the same results they hired me for. No one is going to be disappointed with the fact that you show up with a Micro Four Thirds camera, or tell you "Hey, that camera is tiny, I don't want you to shoot this any more". Just get them nice photos, and change their perception!

In fact, I've noticed people being distinctly more comfortable when I'm shooting with M4/3 gear than when I'm shooting with a DSLR. It's just less intimidating for people who don't like taking pictures. Sometimes I'll be asked about my camera and gear, and I'll explain to them the benefits of the system, which they seem to find interesting.

Much more frequently I'm inquired about why I'm not using flash in incredibly low light, hehe. This often happens with guests at a wedding reception who happen to be photographers themselves. I just tell them I don't like flash and my lens is bright enough to handle it. No one's ever complained about my low light results.


Exactly my observation too, which is why I returned Nocticron. The extra weight and price (though it wasn't a consideration) wasn't worth over 45/1.8.
It might be if you are shooting professionally.

For my purpose I could live with slightly less contract OOC with 45/1.8, could increase that later in LR.

And that's the wonderful thing about being on Micro Four Thirds! Not only do you have variety, but your low end options are still excellent products too!
 

Ricoh

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Nov 2, 2013
Messages
978
Location
UK
Real Name
Steve
Glad to hear you're studying the purest of sciences. Although I read electronics many years ago, my interest is very much Physics - for interest I bought the 'red books' written by one of the best physicists of all time, Richard Feynman I'm sure your familiar with the great man's work, he's my all time hero.
 

kwalsh

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Mar 3, 2012
Messages
848
Location
Baltimore, MD
OT, my wife's father was actually in Feynman's original undergraduate lectures (Feynman actually only taught them once, the same poor souls of one class had him for freshman and sophomore physics and he never taught that material again). Apparently it was quite awful, disorganized and not well presented.

Fortunately a whole lot of other folks in the department put great effort into taking his unique presentation and refining into the books in a more organized and presentable way. And that's the red books we have today! Still few places use them for courses, when I took the freshman class at Caltech it was being taught by someone who was such a huge fan of Feynmann he's published multiple books on various lost lectures. And even he decided he didn't want to use the Feynmann lectures as the text for the class!

But for reading on your own, a unique and wonderful thing.
 

napilopez

Contributing Editor
Joined
Feb 21, 2012
Messages
826
Location
NYC Area
Real Name
Napier Lopez
Glad to hear you're studying the purest of sciences. Although I read electronics many years ago, my interest is very much Physics - for interest I bought the 'red books' written by one of the best physicists of all time, Richard Feynman I'm sure your familiar with the great man's work, he's my all time hero.

The Feynman lectures are what gave me my start! Still some of the greatest physics texts despite being nearly 40 years old.

OT, my wife's father was actually in Feynman's original undergraduate lectures (Feynman actually only taught them once, the same poor souls of one class had him for freshman and sophomore physics and he never taught that material again). Apparently it was quite awful, disorganized and not well presented.

Fortunately a whole lot of other folks in the department put great effort into taking his unique presentation and refining into the books in a more organized and presentable way. And that's the red books we have today! Still few places use them for courses, when I took the freshman class at Caltech it was being taught by someone who was such a huge fan of Feynmann he's published multiple books on various lost lectures. And even he decided he didn't want to use the Feynmann lectures as the text for the class!

But for reading on your own, a unique and wonderful thing.

Hehe, I also wouldn't teach an introductory physics class with the them, but I feel they're great at communicating some of the wonders of physics along with the actual work behind it.

Woops, getting quite sidetracked here. Umm, I'm sure if Feynman were a photographer, he'd like the Nocticron. Yeah.
 

rparmar

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Jun 14, 2011
Messages
654
Location
Limerick, Ireland
I liked your previous article, but now I am less sure. I see very little (or perhaps nothing) here that I haven't already achieved with the Olympus 45mm. It's hard to make a direct comparison, since you are a very good photographer!

However, there is something quite wrong here with the images your present, if (as you say) you have done minimal PP. In most of your images you've lost the blacks due to cranking contrast. This may be your style, but it is not the Nocticron rendering. (At least I hope not.) It then seems disingenuous to say that the lens has more contrast. Surely it doesn't have so much contrast that detail in dark areas is lost!

After examining many photos, I would say that the Nocticron does indeed seem to have an edge on resolution once stopped down a little. And I like the rendering more than the Voigtlander. I prefer the Nocticron OOF areas to the Olympus in those few cases where the subject to background distance is fairly close. But then one must shoot wide open and give up on that resolution. (Though it looks very very good when wide.)

However, this is nothing that can't be dealt with by correct composition or, in extremis, in developing.

FWIW I like the Olympus look, which reminds me quite a bit (not exactly) of Zeiss. And I always preferred Zeiss rendering to Leica. So maybe it comes down to taste.

To me the Olympus 45mm is a miracle lens. Perhaps it would get even more praise from some quarters if it cost $1000.
 

Latest posts

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Forum GIFs powered by GIPHY: https://giphy.com/
Copyright © Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom