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Prime lens or tele?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by thelug3r, Mar 29, 2012.

  1. thelug3r

    thelug3r New to Mu-43

    Mar 18, 2012
    What should i get as my next lens for my Olympus E-PL1? I only have the first version of the 14-42 f/3.5-5.6 and need another lens. Should i get a prime (oly 17mm) or a telephoto lens (it would most likely end up being the oly 40-150)? I do some sports photography, but i think having a prime lens would give me a new perspective on my photos. I definitely would like the extra range from the tele though. I am on a budget and its one or the other. Thanks
  2. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    This is really a question only you can answer.

    Look at the shots you've taken with the zoom. Are are large percentage at the wide end?

    Think about the pictures you CAN'T get with your current gear. Would the zoom or the prime help you get those shots more readily?

    What do you hope to get from the 17mm that you can't get from your zoom? It's only about a stop faster, so it's not going to make a huge difference in available light shooting, and you've got the focal length covered. You could try setting the zoom on 17mm, leaving it there, and going shooting. Then decide how well that focal length works for you.

    If you're looking for a faster lens, I'd save for the 20mm 1.7. If you want to shoot some sports, go for the zoom.
  3. D@ne

    D@ne Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 23, 2012
    Of those 2 lenses, I vote for the zoom...sounds like you're leaning toward that anyway. I've not tried the 17, but it doesn't seem to get stellar reviews.
  4. Bhupinder2002

    Bhupinder2002 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Olympus 45 mm 1.8 ... exellent lens ur money can buy for MFT.
  5. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    buying the 17 seems a bit crazy... if you think an small prime lens is what you want... then the 20mm panasonic is the one to have...its a great general purpose lens that will allow you to take pictures in lower light, and encourage you to get closer to your subject

    on the other hand if you do sports, and thats what you enjoy, then go for the longer zoom lens....but be warned... if you are looking to get sports shots you see in magazines you may find that the 150 is still a bit short

  6. Warren T.

    Warren T. Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 10, 2010
    San Francisco
    Based on what you said about your shooting preferences (some sports), I recommend that you get the tele-zoom first. And to approximate the feeling of shooting with the 17mm prime, set your 14-42mm to the 17mm position, and try to have the discipline not to move to another focal length for a whole shooting session (or scene).

  7. phdezra

    phdezra Mu-43 Stalker Subscribing Member

    Dec 6, 2011
    New York, NY
    My two cents:

    If your first--and thus far only--lens is the kit's 14-42, then it would be fair to say that you are a typical prosumer in this class. The 14-42 is a nice lens, but now the question that nearly everyone in you situation asks is exactly: what is my next lens? Choices:

    Oly 17mm (Or Panny 20mm) -- no (imho). This lens doesnt give you any benefits of a new focal length. However, it does give you a thin camera with a fixed 35mm/40mm angle of view. Not bad, and nice. But your 14-42 isn;t really a whole lot larger.

    Oly 40-150: Maybe. It's a nice telephoto zoom with decent reach. However, how often will you truly need a lens equiv to approx 300mm on the long end? Only you can answer.

    Oly 45/1.8.
    YES. This is a tad longer than your zoom, but more importantly top-notch optics in the form of a prime lens that begins to TEACH you to compose and 'zoom' with your feet.

    Oly 14-150: All around lens that many people get. Mixed results from what Ive read and seen. Some people love it, others are just so-so on it.

    Oly 75-300 or Panny 100-300 - Not just yet.... now you are talking wild safari (or peeping voyeur in NYC :biggrin: )

  8. thelug3r

    thelug3r New to Mu-43

    Mar 18, 2012
    Thanks for all the suggestions! Now that i really think about it the tele makes more sense for me. I do luge, and like to take pictures of my friends when I'm either walking the track or doing sled work, and because I can't exactly get right in their faces with a 17mm lens, the tele would work well, as well as at the start. Again, thanks. Now I know what Im saving up for
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