Should have I sold my OM 50mm 1.8

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by rich00, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. rich00

    rich00 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 8, 2011
    Hi all,

    I'm fairly new to photography and in particular m4/3. I bought an e-pm1 as a step up from a point and shoot and didn't want the bulk of DSLR. I got all excited with idea interchangeable lenses and bought a legacy OM 50mm 1.8 lens. I had it for about 2 weeks then I sold it as I was getting a little frustrated with the manual focusing, especially trying to take pic of my young kids.(wish they would stay still until I could focus). Now I'm looking at some pics and sort of regret my decision. Would a vf-3 help with focusing or the magnification option provide the same experience ?

    Here are some pics taken

    OM 50mm 1.8.
    <a href="" title="062.jpg by Rich_00, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="062.jpg"></a>

    Kit lens 14-42mm
    <a href="" title="PB051555 crop.jpg by Rich_00, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="PB051555 crop.jpg"></a>
  2. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Real Name:
    Manual focus is tricky. The first point is that even if you're good (really good) you won't get anything close to a 100% success rate with moving subjects.

    The VF-3 will help significantly, although if you can afford it, the VF-2 is will help considerably more (larger viewing area, and significantly more detail). Focusing using the rear LCD hard.

    Another possibility is the new Olympus 45mm f/1.8 lens. It is about 2x the cost of the viewfinder, but it has AF, and does so quickly and quietly.

    Personally, I've decided to forget about manual focus for anything that isn't completely stationary, but with a better VF and some practice, you should have more success too.

    Good luck,

  3. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    AF doesn't give you 100% success rate with moving objects either... :rolleyes:

    Yes, the VF-3 (or better yet the VF-2) as well as the Magnify button will both help immensely with manual focus. You should use at least one or the other (of course the magnify is cheaper). If you need to use it with action type shots then the VF-2 is of course the speedy choice, but the Magnify is great for more static objects to get that critical focus.

    Thankfully, the 50mm/1.8 is not terribly expensive and is quite a common lens, so you could probably find another one for cheap... as long as you didn't sell your adapter. ;)

    If you liked the photos you got out of it (and I don't see why you wouldn't!), then I think you should get another one. Or maybe try a 50mm f/1.4... that's one of my favorites.

    Manual focusing is a skill. Like any skill it needs to be learned, but if you're serious about photography then it is a skill you need to have. So you should take the time now to learn it. ;)
  4. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Real Name:
    I would just pick up another 50mm f1.8, unless you're going to hunt down one of the later versions of the 50mm f1.4. The 1.8s are cheaper, slightly smaller, lighter and are typically quite sharp wide open, while my 1.4 needs to be stopped down to f2 to get anything other than a very glowy image. You would also most likely find that focusing accurately at f1.4 is even harder than at f1.8
  5. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    Well, of my manual lenses my 50/1.4 and 50/1.8 MIJ are some of the few lenses that I would have a very hard time selling. Go ahead and find another 50/1.8. They can be found inexpensively in very good shape.
  6. manju69

    manju69 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 1, 2011
    Stroud, UK
    Real Name:
    I gave up on using manual lenses to take pictures of my boy. I got some lovely shots as your example shows but deleted 95% of the rest. I love the AF on the native lenses, and the native oly 45mm is a real gem. Still the OM 50mm is easy to get and cheap too for the quality.
  7. Offriver

    Offriver Mu-43 Regular

    May 17, 2011
    I'd say skip the vf2/vf3 for right now and spend the money on the 45mm f1.8 native micro four thirds lens instead. The autofocus is really speedy and you'll get more keepers w/ your fast moving subjects than trying to master manual focus even w/ the viewfinder. The field of view and depth of field will be similar to the 50mm.
  8. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    I love my 50 1.8om but I think for your action usage you made the right decision.
  9. kahren

    kahren Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 21, 2010
  10. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    It's true, the VF-2 will take up almost 75% of the cost of an m.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8. In the short-term, the 45mm would definitely be the better purchase to improve your performance capabilities. However, the VF-2 will be a more versatile investment in the long run, allowing you to use it on any lens and even letting you save money on legacy lenses down the road. That is assuming the PEN system stays its course with current body forms (ie, doesn't get an integrated EVF in a body you prefer), and that you don't switch to a Panasonic. In which case the 45mm f/1.8 will end up being more versatile long-term investment, as it can be used on any Micro Four-Thirds body. ;)
  11. geoffox23

    geoffox23 Mu-43 Rookie

    Feb 5, 2010
    Brisbane. Australia
  12. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Aside from what everyone else has said, learning how to manual focus can actually improve your understanding of photography -- depth of field, pre-focusing, anticipating the shot, etc. With the right lens and enough practice, MF can often be faster than AF!

    The viewfinders help. I think sticking with MF and a viewfinder for, say, 6 months can be rewarding both in your photography skills, and in the pictures you'll get.

    The VF also helps with native lenses, too, so it's in general a big help.
    • Like Like x 3
  13. rich00

    rich00 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 8, 2011
    Well I've gone an bought another om 50mm and plan to get a vf soon. I suppose learning to manual focus will help my technique an plan my shots more as previously suggested. Thanks for all the responses.
  14. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Exactly. Those skills will carry you through your AF lenses as well, and will also give you the ability to focus quickly in low light or other situations where AF works particularly poor.
  15. rich00

    rich00 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 8, 2011
    Thanks all for the responses. I've just recieved my second om 50mm 1.8 and it's actually in better shape than the one I sold. I've got vf-3 and finally have got the hang of manual focus.

    Here is sample so far.
    Can't remember if these are 1.8 or 2.8
    <a href="" title="P1125514 by Rich_00, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="P1125514"></a>

    <a href="" title="P1125510 by Rich_00, on Flickr">[​IMG]"500" height="375" alt="P1125510"></a>

    I'm pretty impressed, so I've got a vivitar 28mm 2.5 coming in the mail.
  16. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Great shots, and your daughter is at the right age where you want to take LOTS of photos, and the rendering is beautiful on those old legacy lenses. My 11 year old no longer wants me following her around with a camera, so take all the shots you can now!
  17. rich00

    rich00 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 8, 2011
    Thanks, most of my shots are of the kids. They don't seem to mind at the moment but I'm sure that will change later on.
  18. wlewisiii

    wlewisiii Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 16, 2011
    Hayward, WI
    Real Name:
    William Barnett-Lewis
    Nice work. I've really enjoyed using my Nikon glass and even used having this new E-PL1 as an excuse to buy a "new" wide angle for my Nikon kit. A 24/2.8 makes a nice wide angle on film and an equally nice normal on the digital.

    The VF3 is a good investment - I like mine. Put MF on one of the buttons and make use of the magnify function as you need it. Also, if you don't already know the concept, google "Hyperfocal distance" - learn that and MF lens can be almost P&S fast.
  19. rich00

    rich00 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 8, 2011
    The vf3 has made a huge difference. What I have found is that I haven't been needing to use MF. The sample photos have been, taken without MF.

    Thanks for the tip on hyperfocal, definitely reading up on that.
  20. Bhupinder2002

    Bhupinder2002 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Yes I agree. I use manual focus on my Olympus 45mm 1.8 and its more fun now.I can focus as quickly as AF ..its good fun and results are better ..