Sharp Zooms?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by jjbigfly, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. jjbigfly

    jjbigfly Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 6, 2013
    Needing a bit of free help with zoom lens (or lenses) for the EM5.
    Wanting sharp images. I have tried both Oly and Pany longer zooms (14-140 and close) and did not care much for the sharpness at all. A couple of them can be quite sharp at mid length, but I am wanting more. I understand that a $500 lens might not do what I want. I can learn to save :).....
    Any suggestions for good sharp zooms (2) for short and long reach?
  2. elavon

    elavon Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 1, 2012
    Tel Aviv Israel
    For short and in your budget the P14-45 is very sharp and the P12-35 is sharp fast and expensive.
    For the longer end I do not have there are plenty of zoom from Pany and Oly in the 40-175 range and most are quite sharp and cost in the 200$ range.
    I have the P100-300 which is very sharp but big heavier and costs about 500$.
    In the shorter range there is the P35-100 which is very expensive >1300$ it is sharp and fast.

    Here is table with all :43: lenses
  3. slothead

    slothead Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 14, 2012
    Frederick, MD
    elevon, your hennigarts link seems to be broken.
  4. Promit

    Promit Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 6, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    Promit Roy
    You're never going to get across the range sharpness in one of those big 10x zooms or anything like it. The physics are not in your favor; the price and size required to defeat the sharpness problem will be far beyond what anyone wants to deal with. If you want image quality, you need to narrow your range.
  5. elavon

    elavon Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 1, 2012
    Tel Aviv Israel
    It is working from my computer.
  6. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    How reliant are you on AF? The Four-Thirds system had some of the sharpest zoom lenses around, and are easily adapted to Micro Four-Thirds. Their high-quality lens selection is much more complete than the m4/3 lens selection (as it should be, having been around for a lot longer), including a top-pro lineup that can't yet be touched by m4/3. For lenses that are comparable, 4/3 lenses are much more affordable, besides offering many lenses which aren't available to m4/3. They are not made for CDAF however, so do not autofocus as fast on non-reflex bodies (though that will likely change when the E-M1 comes out).

    Or you could save up for some quality m4/3 zooms like the Lumix X 35-100mm/2.8 or Lumix X 12-35mm/2.8.

    But why does it have to be zoom? You can't get quality, speed, and affordable pricing all in one package when you have to add in a zoom range. Why not just collect prime lenses and get the speed and sharpness you want at an affordable price? A single prime lens can cover a similar range as a standard 3x-4x zoom lens just by adding a few big steps forwards or backwards (less so when you go ultra-wide or super-tele). Zoom is nice, but not as big a deal as some make it out to be.
  7. uscrx

    uscrx Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 26, 2011
    Shasta Cascade
    Are we talking IQ or sharpness?

    Sharpness at telephoto range becomes more of a "focus" & "shutter speed" issue.

    Hand shake and out of focus are probably 2 biggest culprits in producing "blurry" pictures.

    at 150mm...equivalent to 300mm FF, rule of thumb is to use shutter speed of 1/600 or faster unless your camera is on a tripod.

    or you have extremely steady hands and your subject isn't moving.
  8. winnie123

    winnie123 Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 9, 2012
    London, U.K
    And mine - it's useful - thanks :smile:
  9. STR

    STR Mu-43 Veteran

    May 16, 2013
    Top 5 zooms, in order:
    Panasonic 12-35X (starts at $950)
    Panasonic 35-100X (starts at $1050)
    Panasonic 7-14 (starts at $900)
    ...(gap in sharpness)
    Panasonic 14-45 (starts at $225)
    Panasonic 45-175X (I think this goes for $300 most of the time)

    Everything else is (mostly) similar to each other, and honestly aren't that much worse than the 14-45 and 45-175. Olympus 12-40 should bump the 45-175 off the list and probably land in the top of the list.
  10. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    Broken for me at work. Content Filter. Probably fine at home.
  11. jjbigfly

    jjbigfly Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 6, 2013
    A great deal of thanks for all of the replies. I am going to re-think the zoom thing as I really do like the pics I get with the primes. I have the OLY 17, 60macro and the 75mm. A 45 might for be good for now. I like the 75 but it is a bit long at times. Am really looking forward to a nice zoom (came from Canon L series zooms) but these primes are really nice.......IQ (as I understand it) and sharpness is everything I want so far.
    While I had not considered it, perhaps primes only could be a good deal.