Which 25 do you use, and why?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by pdk42, Mar 19, 2015.

  1. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    OK - so I've found myself in the embarrassing situation where I have both the 25s (don't ask!). I'd decided to keep the Oly and let the Pany go since (a) it's smaller & lighter, (b) the hood reverses for storage, (c) it's cheaper (by less than it used to be - Pany prices seem to have softened a lot), and (d) the IQ seems pretty close.

    However, I'm struggling to find a buyer for the Pany, so I keep giving it an airing and I'm beginning to like what I see. I know that f1.4 and f1.8 aren't much difference in DOF blurring, but there is a difference nonetheless. The Pany seems to be slightly sharper in the centre too, which again isn't a lot, but it's there.

    Net, net - I'm wondering if I should change my mind. Never one to be a sheep - I thought I'd see what you guys and gals think... ;)
  2. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Those are the same reasons I bought the Olympus. Also after looking at Robin Wong's comparison I couldn't see much between them. Got the O 25mm new for under $300 and it seemed like a no brainer.

    I do wonder if I should have gone for f1.4, though. There are so few (AF) m4/3 lenses faster than f1.7.

    If I was in your shoes, I might just put them both up for sale and let the free market decide which one gets sold! :)
    • Like Like x 1
  3. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    Real Name:
    That is a really, really hard call. There are some people that prefer the rendering of the Panasonic over the Olympus.

    I was one that liked the smaller size and found the IQ differences pretty much a non issue. Picked the Olympus (didn't hurt I got it for cheap from the Olympus refurbished store).

    If the P25 is growing on you, there must be a good reason. Is that reason enough to have you prefer it?

    The other thing to consider is the rumor of the super fast Oly primes that may be coming soon. They say they will be f/1. Might be worth selling one or the other now and possibly save the funds for those primes.
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2015
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Jfrader

    Jfrader Guest

    I have the P25mm f/1.4 and like it very much. A tad faster and a bit sharper than the Oly with good, quick autofocus. As you mentioned, the disadvantages are size and that funky hood that won't reverse, so it takes up more room in the camera bag. I just learned to live with those things. It is now the fastest m4/3 lens I own which is the reason for buying it originally and for keeping it. If someone comes out with a "normal" in the f/1.2 or less range, I'll probably have to look at it but for now I'll keep using the little Pany.
  5. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 7, 2010
    My thought has always been that the PL 25 is worth the extra cost & size if it is a primary focal length for you. Otherwise the Oly is more than adequate. I think there is a bit more "character" with the PL (and I say that as someone who really dislikes those kinds of adjectives when describing a lens), but you are certainly at a point of diminishing returns when moving from the Oly.
  6. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Real Name:
    Andrew Lossing
    Try maybe listing the Panasonic on Amazon seller and pricing it aggressively? I've had a lot of luck with lenses through Amazon.
  7. bassman

    bassman Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Apr 22, 2013
    New Jersey
    Real Name:
    I got the PL25 before the oly came out. If they were both available, I would have bought the Oly for the size. But it doesn't seem worth switching.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    Real Name:
    Another vote for Amazon. I've done pretty well there recently.
  9. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    Real Name:
    The Olympus has better edge to edge sharpness but is not as sharp in the center as the PL25. Sharpness isn't the end all of lenses and neither one is wanting in the detail it can resolve. I've had both and it would be hard to choose between them again. The Olympus is a wonderful lens, and I'll probably get another for the price, but there is something special about the PL25, and I've kicked myself often for letting mine go.
  10. PowerHawk2015

    PowerHawk2015 Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 8, 2015
    For me, it's the PL25. It's basically welded onto my OM-D. I bought it sometime after the Oly 25 was released. Being two thirds of a stop faster and slightly better IQ it was a no brainer. I'm willing to give up a little size to gain something in return. It's not like the PL25 is that much bigger than the Oly 25, both won't fit in your pocket, both lenses will fit in the same bag, not like you need a larger bag/case if you have the PL25 mounted to your cam. The hood is a non issue personally, I never take it off or flip it around. The PL has a better dampened focus mechanism, I haven't come across any other lens that has a smoother action than the PL25. I also believe it has a slightly better build quality, it is quite dense and solid.
    The Oly is made to a pricepoint, whereas the PL isn't.
  11. nardoleo

    nardoleo Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 2, 2013
    Real Name:
    I have the Pana 25. I would still get it over the Oly because it gives me a different rendering from my primary lens, the oly 12-40mm zoom.
    And the f1.4 gives me that slight edge from my f2.8 zoom when I need to go dark.
  12. gravijaflare

    gravijaflare Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 28, 2014
    A planet called Gaia
    i've had the panasonic 25mm and it was the reason i let go of the 20mm. but eventually shifted to something wider but still has that similar rendering, the 15mm.

    now if panasonic will release a version 2 of the 25mm, in a leica-style metal build, with af/mf switch and better hood, then i'd probably get one again. :)
    • Agree Agree x 2
  13. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Yeah, $400, which is what FF 50mm f1.4 lenses often sell for. You make it sound like they cut corners and put out a cheapo lens.
  14. PowerHawk2015

    PowerHawk2015 Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 8, 2015
    To start off, comparing a FF lens to a M43 lens is obsurd, even price comparison. To construct a lens to a pricepoint means cutting corners. The constructions is great (Oly 25), the materials used for construction is not so great.
    To make it smaller means tighter tolerances.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2015
  15. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    How are the materials worse than the 95% plastic Panasonic?
  16. PowerHawk2015

    PowerHawk2015 Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 8, 2015
    Well, I'll make this as easy as I can and as short as I can.
    Take the lens hood, with the oly hood I can easily break it with 2 fingers squeezing it. This isn't the case with the PL. This should give you a rough idea on the construction materials used in both.
  17. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    The hood? Really? That's what it is down to? Should hoods have high build quality or should they be light and get out of the way?

    Ok, I'm getting in over my head. I think they are both great and would happily shoot either one. I'll just leave it at that.
  18. PowerHawk2015

    PowerHawk2015 Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 8, 2015
    Well, yeah. Higher quality Oly prime lenses come with equal quality hoods. The 12 and 75 are metal body lens, that come with metal hoods.
    The 17 is a metal body, and is offered with a metal hood as an accessory.
  19. eteless

    eteless Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 20, 2014
    You must have strong fingers or I'm getting old, the official Oly hood is made out of some pretty damn tough plastic... I can get it to flex with two fingers but break? not a chance.
  20. shaolinmonk

    shaolinmonk Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 31, 2013
    Toronto Canada
    Panny for the rendering