THE m4/3s Lens (45mm)...

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by tjdean01, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    It's common knowledge that the 20/1.7 was THE must-have lens in a m4/3s user's bag. Small, cheap, sharp, fast, wide-normal FOV. Today, there are more choices. The 17/1.8 and the 25/1.4 pretty much split off the 20's popularity, and now there's a 25/1.8. Sure, the 20 is sad about this, but it's good news for the rest of us!

    If the only standard zoom were the Panasonic 14-42 II for $150 then I'm sure that'd be something everyone has, but there are a half dozen lenses that cover that range, not to mention the 12-35 and 12-40, neither of which are ultimately popular amongst everyone because of the price tag and well, since there are two, the sales are split in half. Again, this is all good for us. The 75 is a one-of-kind lens, but it's too long for many uses and is prohibitively expensive.

    So, the ONE lens that it seems to me that every has (or everyone should have!) is the Olympus 45/1.8. On sale it's only $300 new. It comes in two colors, it's light, it's small, it gives good bokeh and has decent close focusing capability, it's extremely sharp, it can be used at 1.8 without much issue, etc.

    It seems like everyone just has this lens.I'm sure the 20 has sold more than this, and maybe even the 12-35 has outsold it. I don't know. But as far as native lenses go, there is nothing even close to the 45. The Sigmas are 30 and 60, plus f2.8s. Panasonic has the 42/1.2 but I can only imagine the price. The 45/2.8 has never been super popular and is not as petite physically or on your pocketbook.

    I'd be curious to see sales of lenses, year by year.
  2. szanda

    szanda Mu-43 Regular

    Well 45 is great, but its use is very limited, you can't shoot in interiors and sometimes you just simply want that wide fov.

    Ideal lens for me would be non stabilized, autofocusing 21,5mm f/1.4, that would by instabuy for me :smile:
  3. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Sean Rastsmith
    Personally, I am a fan of the MD 45/2. All of the IQ, but $25 for a NOS one. Add in an adapter, and you are still 1/8th the price of the Olympus, and a stop faster. Does mean you have to MF though...
  4. broody

    broody Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 8, 2013
    I agree, the 45mm Zuiko is easily the best value in M43... It may not be a "must have" because there are plenty of telephoto primes in this format, and they're all pretty great. But this was my first true quality lens for M43 and I am constantly blown away by the results I get from it. These days it's always in my bag along with the 17mm 1.8, and I wish for nothing else.
  5. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    And you can shoot IN interiors, you just can't shoot the interiors themselves with the 45. I've done lots of shots of people, dogs, and cats with the 45, as well as of object I want isolated from the interior they happen to be in. If you want a picture of the room itself, it's not very useful, but for any number of things inside the room, it is perfect.
    • Like Like x 1
  6. T N Args

    T N Args Agent Photocateur

    Dec 3, 2013
    Adelaide, Australia
    call me Arg
    The lens that just sits on my camera until I need a different view, is the Leica 25mm f/1.4. I had to have it.

    But, yes, I had to have the 45mm f/1.8! :th_salute:
  7. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    I have to agree. This is the one lens that I've owned the longest and the one I have never considered selling. I have used it repeatedly indoors and out. I tend to carry two bodies and most often one has the 25mm mounted and the other the 45mm. It is an exceptional lens.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    The 45 is one of those lenses I take even when I know it's probably not the best focal length. I just like the results. I also feel that way about the 14. Not as technically good as the 45 but none of that really matters when you like the images it produces.
  9. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    I don't have the 45mm . I am sure it's a very nice lens, but like some others I am content for now to use the old manual focus 50mm lenses instead.
  10. madogvelkor

    madogvelkor Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 22, 2013
    The 45 is great, but unless you really use that focal length all of the time a legacy 50mm is almost as good and 1/10th the price.
  11. DynaSport

    DynaSport Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 5, 2013
    I consider all three of my primes must have lenses. The 14 2.5 is so small and cheap if you buy either used or one split from an old kit. The 45 is a wonderful lens and for a long time I did fine with just the 14 and 45. But since I bought the PL25, both those lenses sit in the bag more than on the camera. I can't imagine only having one lens, but if I did, it would be the PL25 hands down.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    When the O45 came out there were not as many options, including good short zooms, as there are now. For me, the O17 is the one prime choice.
  13. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    I tested a bunch of lenses in the 45-55mm range, all of them except the Oly 45 were manual focus lenses. -- An old Zuiko 50 f1.8, an older Summicron collapsible 50 f2, and an Industar 52mm f2.8. Even the Industar did well by f8, though it was a bit of an under-achiever at wider apertures compared to the others. I wouldn't get rid of the 45mm for them, but they did well, and I still frequently use the 1953 Summicron on my E-M5. In terms of pure resolution the native lens win, but it is surprising how well the old lenses do on a medium (digital sensor) they were not designed for. The Summicron just has a look that I want sometimes, like the shot below. The lower contrast of the 1953 lens helped me to retain shadow information in a tricky lighting situation. The homemade memorial at a cemetery nearby had a feeling to it, a poignancy that I felt the older lens helped convey. Or maybe it's my imagination.

  14. orfeo

    orfeo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 27, 2013
    For me it's the PL25, it is just a blessing of a lens for this system. The new Oly 25 is sure good news for Oly shooters, but for the rest of us we have The must have lens in the pana leica. Of course your mileage may vary if you like 35mm eq. FOV
  15. orfeo

    orfeo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 27, 2013
    Always felt the same with digital sensors that low contrast lenses is a good thing. Manual focus though is not most of the time.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    My most-used lens is the O9-18. But...I do a lot of travelling and with that come lots of interior, landscape, seascape, etc shots. However, for general use, yeah...I'd say the O45 is a no-brainer for M4/3 owners. I do love mine!
  17. Livnius

    Livnius Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    Melbourne. Australia
    I don't think there is such a thing as THE must have lens or THE best bang for the buck lens since what works for one may not (and usually doesn't) work for everyone else.

    As far as I'm concerned for ME the 'must have' or whatever you want to call it lens is the PL's a focal length I'm very comfortable with which lends itself very well to everything from landscapes to torso portraits, it's fast both in its large f1.4 aperture and in AF speed, is easily within my own size/weight limits and feels perfectly balanced on my EM5 and importantly I really like how it draws. However, ask the next person and they'll probably say the O17/1.8 or P12-35 is their 'THE' lens.
    • Like Like x 3
  18. Fmrvette

    Fmrvette This Space For Rent

    May 26, 2012
    Detroit, Michigan
    I bought a 45mm to replace a Nikon 50mm f/1.8 because I don't like manual focusing on the E-M5. That being said, I rarely use the 45mm; the last time it was on an outing was in July, 2013.

    It's a nice lens but it's just not a focal length that I use very often. :frown: While it is capable of much more I tend to use it as a short portrait lens and I just don't take many portraits. I probably don't give it the usage (and respect) that it deserves.

    I agree that if one shoots with prime lenses then the 45mm is a "should have" in the kit - when ya need it, ya need it, and it's a bargain at the going price.

    (One of the great pleasures, for me - others mileage may vary, is being able to put an E-M5 with a 20mm prime mounted, a 14mm prime, a 30mm prime, and the 45mm prime in my Domke bag and have it feel like it weighs nothing at all :2thumbs:. )


  19. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    I have a fair chunk of the primes. 14, 17, 20, 25, 45 and 75.... but basically I now shoot just with the 17 and the 75. and occasionally the 25.

    the 45 is a fine lens and great value... but it just doesn't work for me.

    If there has to be a must have lens then I would vote for the 75. Its way way more than just a portrait lens... very versatile in my opinion

    I echo Jims comment... it is wonderful to be able to carry a whole bunch of lenses in a simple Domke messenger style bag, with room to spare for a book, and ipad, and other stuff

    I did a trip to tokyo last year with just the 17, 25 and 75, and never felt i missed anything

    i did a blog on the trip

    and some of the shots are here

    we all have our own needs and goals.... so there is no 'one' lens... personally I have no need or desire for anything wider than 14mm... yet others seem to think that is essential... nobody is right and nobody is wrong... its what rocks your boat

    • Like Like x 3
  20. nardoleo

    nardoleo Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 2, 2013
    Its very hard to pick a must have lens, for me, my current set up are all the must have lens I must have. :p

    I favorite lenses or "must have lenses" in my kit are the Pana 25mm, Voigt 17.5mm and the Voigt 42.5mm.

    The 2 voigtlanders are just magic. Really enjoy shooting with them. The pana 25 is my go to lens. if I am using the 25mm, I will always throw in the 12mm as well and that makes up a really compact kit.

    The 75 and 12-40 are for specific occasions.

    Choices, choices.

    Sent from my trusty Samsung Galaxy Note 2
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