1. Reminder: Please use our affiliate links for holiday shopping!

Who says the kit lens stinks?! - Star trails photos

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by gardengirl13, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Jun 26, 2012
    US
    For those of you curious about the 12-50 kit lens, have no fear. It can be sharp and look very nice!

    I took this shot(s) with the kit lens. I really have been wanting some nice primes to get the best out of my OMD, but this shot really shows just what it can do. This is somewhat tricky as long exposures tend to soften images. But the original shot is SUPER sharp! I can't wait to get it printed! I've said it a hundred times here, I am SOOOO happy I dumped my DSLR for the OMD!

    147555355YV7pt0EB.
     
    • Like Like x 20
  2. mrjr

    mrjr Mu-43 Top Veteran

    518
    Sep 25, 2012
    Nice work. How long was the exposure?
     
  3. yekimrd

    yekimrd Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 14, 2012
    Cincinnati, OH
    Mikey
    Nice job here! The 12-50 is one great and versatile lens. I think the disappointment with it is because people tried comparing it to the 12-60 Four Thirds version which was faster (2.8-4) and sharper. Using a tripod negates any advantage of a faster lens for night shots or long exposures.
     
  4. Atom Ant

    Atom Ant Mu-43 Veteran

    241
    Oct 24, 2012
    Melbourne, OZ
    Adam
    If you measure how many by how many degrees the sky has turned you can work out how long the exposure was. :wink: :cool:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Jun 26, 2012
    US
    It's an hour total. With the digital sensors not being what film was I have to do 10 minute shots and put them together. With film I could do a 3-5 hour exposure with no noise.

    I'm not familiar with the older 12-60, so I can't compare. But I do think it's a good all around lens. A few times I wish it was wider or longer, but not too often. I got a longer tele to go with it so that helps. But it's my main walk around lens that's on the camera with me every day. Sure the bokeh of my 25 is better, but if you work it right you can get pretty good backgrounds with it. I am coming from film then DSLR so I'm quite impressed with what this combo can do. I was worried doing this switch would be a downgrade, but it's not! It matches my 60D in almost every way. The only complaint I have is battery life. With that system I did have the very cheap 28-105II which was a $200 lens that everyone bashed too. But I loved it. I have a few photos that people thought I used an L lens with and were shocked to see it was that cheap lens. Even without a tripod this lens has produced some great shots at night! I can't believe the IS on it!
     
  6. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    It surprises me how much haet there seems to be for the 12-50, I like mine just fine.
     
  7. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    Bob
    What a cool shot - I love it! :thumbup:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. SeeingtheWorldat25mm

    SeeingtheWorldat25mm Mu-43 Rookie

    20
    Sep 28, 2012
    Japan
    Tom
    Nice shot! Great composition!:2thumbs:

    I'll have to ask you for some tips about doing that type of photography. I've been interested in trying my hand at it, and was quite surprised when you mentioned 10 minute exposures.
    If you don't mind, I'd like to message you separately about technique.
    Thanks!
     
  9. M4/3

    M4/3 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    713
    Sep 24, 2011
    It's because the 12-50 offers only average speed and sharpness. Alot of todays m4/3 owners were using 4/3 Olympus cameras in 2009 and earlier years like the E-620, E-3, E-5, etc. and using the high grade Olympus 14-54mm and 12-60mm 4/3 zooms which were both faster and sharper than the 12-50 m4/3 kit lens. So naturally they had hoped the 12-50 m4/3 lens would be just as good so that they wouldn't be forced to buy a 4/3 to m4/3 adapter and use their bulky 14-54mm and 12-60mm 4/3 zooms on their compact OM-D's.
     
  10. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    So people are making the mistake of interpreting "not as sharp as lens x" to mean "not sharp"?
     
  11. ghetto

    ghetto Mu-43 Regular

    no! message about it on here so the rest of us can read it and the response... :biggrin:
     
    • Like Like x 2
  12. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Jun 26, 2012
    US
    If you have any questions just ask. If you want to PM that's fine but I don't mind answering them here. I tried star trails with film a few times and loved it. Then when I went digital I didn't think about it for a few years and just got back into it again. For me this time of year is better since you can do them at 6:30 instead of 10:30! I'll try to get e-mail responses so I know when people post here.

    If you want check out my "lost in space" gallery on my pbase page lost in space Photo Gallery by gardengirl13 at pbase.com
     
  13. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Jun 26, 2012
    US
    I do think this has a lot to do with it. I know on the other forum I'm on I think it's also they spent $1200 on an L lens and if someone like me takes a good shot with a $200 lens it kind of makes people question why they spent so much. I compared my 28-105II to the 24-105 and in 90% of the shots it matched it. The only difference was the color cast, I love how L's cast a kind of cool color. But it wasn't worth the extra money. Now the primes on the other hand, they were pretty good, but some of the cheap primes get right up there too, but there is something about those primes. I had the 70-200 f/4IS which was at one time one of THE best lenses to have. It got way too heavy for me so I switched to the very cheap plastic 55-250. In good light you couldn't tell the difference. It only made me want the L back in darker/poorer light. Otherwise it was fine.

    To me photography is like a lot of other things, 90% you 10% equipment. The biggest photo contest I won, I won third place with a $200 point and shoot. Most of my shots are just snap shots. I just sometimes luck out! ha ha!!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  14. savvy

    savvy Mu-43 Top Veteran

    714
    Sep 28, 2012
    SE Essex, UK
    Les
    Noooo!!!!

    Share any techniques for the benefit of all, this is what a forum is all about.
     
  15. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    Too true, and I think a lot of people would agree when this is pointed out, but there is always some person/group that attempts to have the "best" gear, by however they measure best, whether it's by the most megapixels, or the ultimate in sharpness, or the lowest noise at the highest iso, etc. If gear doesn't match those measures, it's no good junk. Lately, I've started just looking for stuff I like to and can afford to use, that performs well enough that I can get the shots I want.

    Someone's sig here (and I apologize I can't remember who's sig this is) goes something like "Learning to appreciate photos at 400% like the rest of the internet." And I realized after really internalizing that, that it's a pretty good attitude about the whole thing. I don't typically print 400%, so I've quit really obsessing about it.
     
  16. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    75% you, 20% lighting, 4% glass, 1% camera. :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. LovinTheEP2

    LovinTheEP2 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    619
    Feb 15, 2011
    Toronto
    Only people saying that are PIXEL peepers and analytical obsessed technicals vs. photographers who actually use the glass. There is hardly a bad lens in M43 lineup.. some are stellar and amazing ones and the rest are great.. with a couple of average ones. The original 14-42 wobbler was bad from Olympus and the 17mm Olympus pancake is average but the rest I would say are above average when compared to NEX offerings and a lot of Nikon and Canon offerings for the APS and FF cameras.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Jun 26, 2012
    US
    OK I can see that one too!

    I have some awesome shots where the lighting was real funky and there was tons of noise and movement and it was soft. Some of the best photos I've taken. No great bokeh, not sharp, subject movement etc that people seem to strive for. Yet people really respond to them. Not "oh great sharp shot" more like "man, it makes me feel ..." That means more to me.


    But I do admit I'm am somewhat lusting after a good 14/17 prime right now, I'm not 100% sure about the lower priced ones since I need (not WANT) fast and accurate AF, and real good low light capabilities. I need this for what I shoot not because I think it'll make better photos. As of right now though I think the cheap 14 will be ok.


    ETA: case in point, this photo (sorry it's older not from my OMD so I'm linking instead of posting it here) is fun. It speaks to me, reminds me of the chaos of the moment. I didn't plan it. Saw it and snapped it. http://www.pbase.com/gardengirl13/image/116729335
     
    • Like Like x 1
  19. IcemanYVR

    IcemanYVR Mu-43 Regular

    105
    Nov 16, 2012
    Vancouver, BC
    Allan
    I used to shoot these on slide film as well, nothing like looking at a perfect 4 hour exposure on a transparency.

    What is your technique for "stacking" the images? Which program are you using? What was your ISO for these shots...

    ... sorry for all the questions but somehow doubt I'm the only one.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. SeeingtheWorldat25mm

    SeeingtheWorldat25mm Mu-43 Rookie

    20
    Sep 28, 2012
    Japan
    Tom
    Hi Kris!

    Like I said, great shots!
    I did some reading a while back (while researching moon photography) on the web and come across some varied techniques to obtain the star trail result.
    I'd be interested (as it looks like others are as well :smile:) to learn more about your technique, experiences and challenges for this type of photography, especially if one plans to print their results. Of course, you don't have to give away all your secrets. :wink:
    I know with digital, you have to limit the exporsure time to minimize the noise and "hot pixels", which I've come across when doing some daytime long exposures.
    So as a start, I'll ask a few questions, and I apologize if they aren't really in a logical order - just putting them down as they pop into my head :smile:.
    1. You mentioned an exposure time of 10min intervals (at least for this photo). I assume this based on experience, so what helps you determine the exposure time interval?
    2. For the 10min exposure interval, did you have to use anything extra on the camera, such a light ND filter to lessen overexposure of the building light in the photo?
    3. In your experience, what helps to determine the ISO setting, and f/stop?
    4. I'm assuming you do some test shots before hunkering down for the long haul. Is there anything in particular in the test shots you are looking for that help with the overall result?
    5. I think someone did ask this, but what software are you using to stack the photos? (Actually as I wrote that question, I was thinking maybe even the in camera stacking option could be used.)
    6. Have you come across any equipment challenges when doing these shots, especially in the colder weather?

    Ok, I've probably missed some obvious questions, but I'll cap the questions at that! :smile:
    Looking forward to reading the responses!

    Tom