PL45 vs CZ Sonnar 50mm f1.5

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by brutto, Apr 23, 2011.

  1. brutto

    brutto Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 17, 2011
    I'm enjoying my E-P1 so much that I'm going to push the boat out and treat her to a fine lens and have narrowed things down to these two. I am happy with manual focusing (in some ways I prefer it) but there are times that AF would be very nice. Has anyone used both of these lenses? Any comparative shots?

    Has anyone used the PL45 on an E-P1? Was the focus okay?

    For me it comes down to autofocus vs DoF control. Plus the feel of the images. I do like the Sonnar "look". What do you think?

    (Btw, I'd be buying the Sonnar on Leica M mount as I already have a Metabones M adaptor. I'd be selling my Contax CZ Planar 50mm f1.4 C/Y mount to part fund it. I prefer the balance of the smaller M-mount lens on the E-P1 and prefer the "look" of Sonnar to the Planar.)

    Many thanks for your thoughts.
  2. m43dex

    m43dex Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 5, 2011
    Recently picked up PL45 and I use it on the E-PL2.... Focus is ok in limited mode... But in Full mode which you need to use for macro focusing it can be much less that optimal. I often have to manual focus for close in shots. The sharpness on the lens seems good but I am still new to the lens so hopefully you will get more tenured replies.
  3. Bokeh Diem

    Bokeh Diem Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 14, 2010
    PL45 Macro and Need for Intervention

    GH2 w/ PL45/f2.8 Macro... handheld f2.8 over 1300 shutter, morning light after rain. Light warming tone, light sharpening.

    This lens was recently repurchased after having sold mine last fall.... I am just giggly having a copy back in the stable. Masterfully sharp.... I was just comparing it to the Pany 14-140.... and there IS no comparison IMO.

    As with ALL macros, they need to be tightly controlled to produce the best results (aside from additional lighting if desired). That means MANUAL focus and APERTURE work to manage the DoF.

    The shot herein is straight out of the box and it highlights the need for intervention..... the PL45 preselects a wide open stance and focuses on what it wants.. in this case the first thing it sees. You can see how added DoF and additional aperture work could have improved this shot somewhat, by pulling more than the leading edges of the central part of the composition into focus.

    You must get in front of the software to create Macro shots that consistently have merit, whatever lens you ultimately choose to use.

    Attached Files:

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  4. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    That is my only complaint about the focus speed, it really seems to hang up in transitioning from normal mode to macro mode.

    Personally, I think it could be fixed by a firmware update to change the switch to be "near" or "far" instead of "full" or "far"
  5. Conrad

    Conrad Mu-43 Veteran

    When in "full", use also the "spot" focus mode instead of matrix or face recognition. At least on my GF1 it makes a huge difference. When doing macro it is the most useful setting anyways, and the "intelligent" algorithms behind the matrix and face recognition modes drive the lens continuously from infinity to closest focus.

    When doing portrait, always use face recognition and the limit mode. Using the spot focussing at 2.8 can give you out of focus headshots. It will find more contrast when focussing on the hairs at the side of the face than on the eyes.