Which 25mm lens should I get?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by acuriousman, Jan 7, 2014.

  1. acuriousman

    acuriousman Mu-43 Rookie

    Jul 20, 2013
    I want an amazing M 4/3rds lens for shooting video and ONLY video. Preferably, as beautiful as possible and with great colors.

    Right now, I'm torn between the Leica 25mm F1.4 and the Voigtlander F0.95. Does anybody here have experience with eitheir or both of these?

    Also, will the GH2/GH3's focus assist (Hitting the touchscreen and having it zoom in for focusing) work the Voigtlander since it's manual?

    Thank you for reading.
  2. Jay86

    Jay86 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 26, 2012
    No contest for video ONLY you should grab the Voigtlander... but this is not a first hand opinion so take it with a grain of salt as I haven't had the pleasure of actually ever using the V25mm. But based on what I have seen and its feature set for video ONLY its the lens to get at the 25mm FL within native M43 lenses. Now if you start considering legacy glass and its a whole other story (especially the performance/dollar ratio).
  3. orfeo

    orfeo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 27, 2013
    for video and the crop 16/9 or ultra wide ratio I would advise to use the 20mm F1.7 as your normal lens.
  4. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Real Name:
    Bruce Foreman
    Each respondent will give you their opinion based on what their frame of reference is. Ultimately you have to make your own decision based on what your eyes tell you. Look for example videos shot with each lens recommended, try to assess the skill/experience level of the videomaker and consider each as it applies to what you would expect.

    Both lenses you mention are "amazing", and so is the 20mm f1.7 also suggested.

    My choice was this: I already had the 20mm. I kept it and added the Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 25mm f/1.4 for the following reasons.

    1. Functions with all features of the GH camera bodies. Although I use manual focus a lot I want autofocus for when it is needed to get rolling fast.

    2. I'm a sharpness nut. This lens is very sharp with excellent color tones and good contrast EVEN WIDE OPEN! Many praise the soft look of the Voightlander wide open but with good quality diffusion the PL25 can shoot nice 'n soft also. I have a set of 5 seemingly "graduated" Cokin diffusion filters (the actual diffusion could vary in those) left over from my portrait studio days that range from so subtle you can hardly tell diffusion was used, to "don't even TRY to focus through this one" (I focus first then put it in place on the lens). In addition the Tiffen Black Diffusion series works well.

    3. For low light, there is not a tremendous amount of difference between f/0.95 and f/1.4, around 1 stop (I'd have to refer to a table for that info). The PL25 serves me well enough there, as do the Oly 45mm f/1.8 and the Oly 75mm f/1.8. However the Depth Of Field (zone of acceptable sharpness) at f/0.95 is going to be so "razor thin" that reasonably sharp focus can become very difficult to get and maintain.

    So that was my choice and my reasons explain my frame of reference so you can compare with yours.

    On the focus assist question...It works but not necessarily as simple as tapping the LCD. I don't have any GH2's left but it seems there was a button press that activated the magnified focus assist with MF lenses. I don't have any MF only lenses handy to try on my GH3 to see what button or Fn button needs to be pressed but that will work with the Voight on the GH3.

    Hope this info helps.
  5. atmo

    atmo Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 11, 2013
    On the GF2, you can tap to zoom once you set the camera's focus mode to MF. Presumably that carries to the GH2 as well.
  6. acuriousman

    acuriousman Mu-43 Rookie

    Jul 20, 2013
    What about character? Do both lenses have comparable character/look?
  7. tosvus

    tosvus Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 4, 2014
    If I recall correctly, as long as it is set to MF, manual lenses should also work fine with tap-to-zoom, or alternatively by pressing one of the fn buttons twice.

    If for video, you plan to do a lot of focus pulling, the voigtlander is probably better. On the other side, it is nice having AF sometimes, even for video...

    Many people seem to prefer the voigtlander look for video, but the opinion seems more split for photos. Certainly, the PL25 is sharper wide open.
  8. weee

    weee Mu-43 Rookie

    Oct 2, 2013
    mind adding one more candidate? how about SLR magic 25/.95? anyone's using that? heard some positive things about it especially affordability and sharpness.