Please, help me to decide my gear

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by nachetetm, Dec 17, 2014.

  1. nachetetm

    nachetetm Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 22, 2014
    Hi everyone!

    Christmas is coming, and would be the perfect time to add a new lens to the collection. The problem is that I cannot decide which one :smile:

    The first interchangeable lens I had was the Zuiko 14-42IIR that came with my E-PL3. The camera is gone, but the lens is still with me. Quality was fine at the beginning, until I decided to buy the Zuiko 45mm :frown: Suddenly, the images I was taking with the zoom looked poor to my eyes compared with the little 45mm. After a while, I decided to jump into the newly released (at the time) E-M10, and with the new camera came a second hand Lumix 20mm pancake. At that point I became so spoiled with the rendering and the sharpness of that lens that I almost stopped using the zoom, and I found myself going out just with the two primes. Even the looks of the Zuiko don't seem so special anymore, and I started to understand what the people mean when they say the zuikos render a more "clinic" image, while the lumix are a bit more "organic". Definitely, I am on the "organic" fanclub.

    After some months with this gear (Zuiko 14-42IIR, 45mm and 20mm) and a few trips, I realized that I could shot almost everything with the 20mm (even environmental portraits). I really like the 40mm focal length but (there is always a "but" :wink:) with this lens I was missing some wide shots. I have the zoom for that but, as I explained before, those pictures look bland to me. Changing lenses in the street is also not my prefered choice, but I became kind of used to do it.

    So here are my three possible choices for my next lens:

    1) Buy the Lumix 12-32 to use when I need something wider, or for those occasions that I prefer to use a zoom. However, I was very close to buy one second hand a few months ago but, when I saw some pictures taken with that lens, I cancelled the purchase. I am pretty sure that copy was decentered, but now I feel I bit skeptical about the quality of the lens.

    2) Buy the Lumix 12-35 f2.8 (second hand). With this lens I hope to have the same quality and rendering I obtain with the 20mm, with the versatility of a zoom. However, I am afraid despite the price tag, this lens is not going to have that special rendering I appreciate so much in the Lumix 20mm.

    3) Buy the Panaleica 15mm. This lens seems to be perfect. Better rendering, less purple fringing, no banding on the E-M10, faster focusing and wider to cover those shots I cannot take with the 20mm. However, the jump from 40mm to 30mm seems quite big, and I am afraid it may be too wide for me (I do not shot much at 28mm with the zoom, to be honest) Its price in Europe does not help either, TBH :rolleyes:

    Obviously I arrived to this point because I read so much about these lenses that I became enormously confused. I would like to hear (read) your thoughts, maybe your experience will help me to find the right lens.

  2. alex66

    alex66 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jul 23, 2010
    I have the 12-32 and love it, my copy is very good, I like what I have seen from the 12-35 and if it were not for my preference for small I may have bought one. Have you thought of trying the 14mm panasonic? Its a good lens though if you find that length hard to work with perhaps both it and the 15mm are not for you. The second curve ball I will throw in what about either the Panasonic 7-14 or the Olympus 9-18mm lenses? perhaps one of these would cover your wide needs and some.
  3. hemuni

    hemuni Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 18, 2014
    Of the three I would prefer the 15mm, but I would also suggest starting with the 14mm panny. Its tiny, sharp, has great colors and the AF is quiet and fast and it's a steal second hand. Then you can always move to the 15mm later on if you feel you need that extra stop and a half.
  4. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Legend

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    The 12-35 is a fantastic performing lens, probably my most used lens out of 5 lenses I own.

    However if you really need speed (in terms of aperture and AF performance), I'd recommend you take a look at either the Olympus 12mm f/2, or the Panasonic 15mm f/1.7. The Olympus is a good bit wider than the Panasonic, and 12mm on m43 is a pretty good length, especially if you like doing a lot of landscapes or photography in the city where you like capturing the background/buildings. The 15mm is going to be a bit sharper than the 12mm, and is 1/2 a stop faster. I wouldn't bother with the 12-32, as there is a good bit of barrel distortion, and the aperture is quite slow at f/3.5 (1 2/3 stops slower than the 12mm prime).

    Honestly, I would recommend renting both the 12mm and 15mm prime lenses, and see which one you like more. There is a huge difference in terms of FoV between a 24mm and 30mm lens.

    If it turns out you like the 15mm best ,and you really want to spoil yourself, sell the 20mm and get a Panasonic 25mm f/1.4. It's truly a special lens.
  5. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    The little Lumix 14mmF2.5 is cheap and takes a nice wide picture. Very small too.

    Or go WIDE with one of the zooms : 7-14 or 9-18
  6. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    If you can afford the 12-35 and it's not too big for you, then get one. It's a fine lens and will do everything you want.
  7. mjgraaf

    mjgraaf Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 9, 2014
    Do you really expect help posting such a question on this forum? You'll only be driven into more analysis-paralysis [emoji1] You started wirth a choice of 3, how many do we now have? [emoji12]
  8. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    MJGraaf has a point.
    Give up hope, all ye who enter here with a "what to buy next" thread ...
    • Like Like x 1
  9. DaveEP

    DaveEP Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 20, 2014
    I had the 20 before the 12-35. Now I have the 12-35 the 20 almost never gets used. Take from that what you will.
  10. nachetetm

    nachetetm Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 22, 2014
    Thanks to everyone, your answers have been of great help. I'm going to purchase the 12-35, but it will not happen soon :frown: My laptop just died, so the money is going into a new one. As soon as my pocket recover I will be looking for a nice second hand 12-35.
  11. Chris5107

    Chris5107 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    If you do not mind the size, this is a great choice. It does render very nicely and you will really like the 12mm end too. I love my primes but once I got this lens, I don't use them as much as I want to because this one is just that good.
  12. mjgraaf

    mjgraaf Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 9, 2014
    And there might be good options used, now that everyone os running after the 12-40 oly :)