Tough choice

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Rob1975, May 14, 2011.

  1. Rob1975

    Rob1975 Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 31, 2010
    I have a dilemma and I hope the trusted members of this forum can help me out once again!
    I have been asked to shoot some pictures for a local high school... just some shots of students in classes, interacting in the halls, etc. Nothing posed, lit, or pre-planned. Probably some nice environmental portraits, too. Again, not lit (besides window light).

    I have come up with two possible solutions that fit my budget. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

    Choice 1
    - Purchase the Leica 45mm (90mm equivalent) f2.8mm lens.

    - Fast lens, with autofocus
    - Paired with my 17mm (35mm equivalent), wide and telephoto are well covered
    - no need to sell my e-p1 (which, silly as it may sound, I have become quite attached to because it was the first camera I took a picture of my son with)

    - Forced to use only the rear screen as a viewfinder. This is very difficult to use when manually focusing a lens.
    - more expensive than Choice 2

    Choice 2
    - Purchase an Olympus e-p2 with Electronic View Finder

    - Can easily use all my manual focus lenses (using EVF), including a 28mm f2.8 and 50mm f2.0 (I also have a 25mm holga lens that makes the camera a digital holga)
    - composition is easier in bright light
    - selling my e-p1 will lower overall cost compared to Choice 1

    - I would have to part with my beloved e-p1 (took my first pics of my son with this camera)
    - The hassle of selling the e-p1 on e-bay
    - Would have to depend on manual focus for any shots that required the 28 or 50mm lenses.

    One last thing... I do not want to shoot with anything but a PEN, so please keep that in mind when commenting. Thanks!
  2. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin .

    Oct 9, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Real Name:
    I swear I must be the only one who doesn't find this to be a problem. Sorry, that doesn't solve your problem, just thinking out loud...
  3. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    I am a former E-PL1+VF2 owner (traded it for an E-P1) and I have to say that using the LCD alone isn't terrible. It takes a bit of practice but the LCD shimmer that happens when an item is in focus makes it pretty simple.

    Mind you, I think the VF2 is terrific, but I also understand the attachment to the E-P1.

  4. Pan Korop

    Pan Korop Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 31, 2011
    Phare Ouest
    Why not keep your beloved E-P1 and buy a G1 as second body? I guess a G1 would be cheaper than the VF2 alone, and it remains a great camera.
  5. mauve

    mauve Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 9, 2010
    Paris, France
    3rd : bite the bullet, treat yourself with a Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 for indoor / hallways group shots, and find a decent MF 50mm + adapter for posed portraits. Less expensive than the Leica, certainly just as good, requires a bit of practice for manual focusing but nothing extraordinary if you have a good vision overall (and your subject don't jump inside the frame).

    I've found the 17 mm f/2.8 too dark for any substantial indoor snaps.

  6. Rob1975

    Rob1975 Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 31, 2010
    With AF lenses, I love the LCD... it's quick and easy, and I can move the camera to capture different angles quite easily! It's when using the manual focus lenses that I want the EVF

    Tried the G1 a while back... hated the noise at the higher ISOs. I just didn't care for the Panny files, regardless of whether they were Jpegs or RAW files.

    I've actually been considering this solution as well... thanks for offering!
  7. travisennis

    travisennis Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 27, 2010
    I'm with you. I never have any issue with manual focusing on the LCD screen. Of course, I only use a 28mm and a 50mm lens. A longer telephoto lens might prove more of a challenge, but I can't say from experience. Now, with that said, manual focusing using the viewfinder on my wife's G2 is a pleasure.
  8. Rob1975

    Rob1975 Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 31, 2010
    Of course, that Panny/Leica 25mm that is supposedly coming soon would be perfect, although totally out of my budget...
  9. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    If you want an EVF then you can't go wrong with the VF2. It's a great EVF. The again for half the cost of an EP-2 with a VF2 you could pick up a new G2 or GH1 and keep the E-P1. The G2 has an EVF that is just as high resolution as the VF2 and has IQ on par with an EP-2. I have an EP-1 and a G2 and the difference in IQ between them is negligible.
  10. Rob1975

    Rob1975 Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 31, 2010
    What about high ISO noise? Could you send me some high res shots at ISO 1600 and 1250 to my email? rfphoto2000 (at) Thanks!
  11. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    The Panasonic Leica 45/2.8 is one of my favorite lenses ever. I recommend Choice 1.
  12. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    x3, using the PL14-50 f2.5/3.3

    Agreed, and they are frequently available at pretty good prices, eliminating the only real complaint people have about the lens.
  13. MajorMagee

    MajorMagee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2011
    Dayton, OH
    Here's an example of what you can get with the Zuiko 50mm f1.4 when shooting in an environment like what you describe.



    The more light gathering you can get, the better because people will be constantly moving.
  14. slackmachine

    slackmachine Mu-43 Rookie

    Jun 23, 2010
    Unless you really need the EVF because the rear screen of the E-p1 is unsuitable for you to take pictures, I'd suggest option 1. The 45mm provides a new focal length and viewpoint, while the EVF simply gives another way to look at a viewpoint you already have. Either way you should have a nice kit though :)