Wide angle battle , Pl8-18 vs O9-18 vs laowa 7.5

amit

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Oct 10, 2019
Messages
192
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #41
I w
on an em10, the Olympus 9-18 would be a very nice small companion.
Review: https://www.opticallimits.com/olympus--four-thirds-lens-tests/529-oly_m918_456

View attachment 841072

I have the Pan/Leica 8-18, as a ‘replacement‘ for a Nikon 17–35 f2.8. Beautifull lens, but considerbaly larger then the Oly 9-18.
https://www.opticallimits.com/m43/1043_leica818f284

View attachment 841071

And the Olympus 7-14:
https://www.opticallimits.com/m43/961_olympus714f28pro

View attachment 841073

Laowa 7.5

https://www.opticallimits.com/m43/1001-laowa75f2mft

View attachment 841074

In German I believe they call it: ‘Die Qual der Wahl’. I have suffered it extensively, and I think it’s very just others do as well :p


Pics stolen from Opticallimits. :whistling:
I was looking for that ,thank you.
Lenstip didnt review the 9-18.... and I think the resolution is what makes the photo crystal clear .

Anyway ,correct me if I wrong , comparing the resolution :
9-18 , seems to remind a kit lens ..
8-18 -similar to the 12-40
Laowa- really sharp at the center ,corners are not so.
Oly 7-14 -crazy sharp at the center!
 

wimg

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Dec 10, 2016
Messages
653
Location
Netherlands
I w
I was looking for that ,thank you.
Lenstip didnt review the 9-18.... and I think the resolution is what makes the photo crystal clear .

Anyway ,correct me if I wrong , comparing the resolution :
9-18 , seems to remind a kit lens ..
8-18 -similar to the 12-40
Laowa- really sharp at the center ,corners are not so.
Oly 7-14 -crazy sharp at the center!
Actually, crazy sharp in the corners too ....

Personally, I think it makes quite the difference, to have sharp corners from wide open, especially as I tend to compose off centre most of the time :).

Kind regards, Wim
 

wjiang

Mu-43 Legend
Joined
Sep 7, 2013
Messages
7,686
Location
Christchurch, New Zealand
When I compared the 9-18 with the 8-18 at the wide end, I found that when both were stopped down to f/5.6, the 9-18 was slightly sharper in the center than the 8-18. The 8-18 trounced the 9-18 at the edges though, irrespective of stopping down or not.
 

PeeBee

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Sep 17, 2012
Messages
1,649
Location
UK
When I bought my 9-18mm new, it was around half the current high street price, and even then I thought it was overpriced, since it does look and feel like an older generation kit lens and it was still £100 more expensive than my EF-S 10-18mm. In it's defence though, I've generally been pleased by the images I've captured with it. Maybe it's the type of shots I take with it, maybe I have a better copy or maybe I'm just less critical than some users. Yes, its the budget offering in our format and it comes with some sacrifices, but in my opinion the IQ gets more criticism than it deserves.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)




It's also very compact and light lens, which is a plus.

I haven't yet felt compelled to upgrade my 9-18 but the rumoured 8-25 f4 Pro might just change that.
 

wonglp

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2011
Messages
650
Location
Singapore
I have the O7-14Pro, P7-14 and Laowa 7.5.

7-14pro would have the best optics (center+corners), flare resistance (there's still flare as it's more bulbous but better than Laowa 7.5 still) and distortions.
Laowa has a fair bit of barrel distortions compared to Olympus, I don't think there's a lens profile release for this lens either. For what is worth, it's nonetheless a nifty lens for traveling and portability and holds up well against the mainstream lenses. Star burst is very nice too.
I've heard good things about PL8-18, but haven't heard much.
 

JohnJeffrey

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Sep 17, 2018
Messages
34
Hi !
I need a wide angle lens , for landscapes and more , mostly outdoor.
I really enjoy my samyang fisheye ,but many times the fisheye is not the right tool.

My current gear is em10 ii , and oly 12-40 which I love , I can get a lot of fine detail with this lens and would love to get a wide lens at its level.

Oly 7-14 , I belive it would be too bulky for me (the12-40 is my limit).
Oly 9-18 , not sure about the quality, can it stand next to the 12-40 ?
Laowa 7.5 mm , I see wonderfull samples on flickr , however , for me ,manual focus is really hard (some old eye injury I carry).

And there , we have the 8-18, the size seem to be as the 12-40 , takes filters , and a bit expensive .
Not sure about using pana lenses on olympus body.(I know that P7-14 is a bit problematic with olympus )...

What do you guys say?
:)
Compromises & tradeoffs! I have Pen-f with Zuiko 12mm f/2 for travel WA tasks beyond the 12~40mm comfort zone. Have you used or considered panorama stitching feature of Oly cameras? The 12~40mm works nicely for hi-res & stitching. On to your lens quest. I rented the Pan-Leica 8~18mm and would own it in a heartbeat except for the price /per use for me. It is a delightful lens! So is the Zuiko 7~14mm! I just don’t use them enough to warrant full ownership. Have you considered the Zuiko Pro 8mm f/1.8 fisheye? Or, do you need a rectilinear UWA? Just my 2cents as an old guy still loving the hobby & art! 😊
 

AmritR

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Jun 18, 2017
Messages
86
Location
Alkmaar
When I bought my 9-18mm new, it was around half the current high street price, and even then I thought it was overpriced, since it does look and feel like an older generation kit lens and it was still £100 more expensive than my EF-S 10-18mm. In it's defence though, I've generally been pleased by the images I've captured with it. Maybe it's the type of shots I take with it, maybe I have a better copy or maybe I'm just less critical than some users. Yes, its the budget offering in our format and it comes with some sacrifices, but in my opinion the IQ gets more criticism than it deserves.

View attachment 841227



It's also very compact and light lens, which is a plus.

I haven't yet felt compelled to upgrade my 9-18 but the rumoured 8-25 f4 Pro might just change that.
Cool, that’s the Isle of Portland?
Spend a wonderfull holiday in that region a few years ago :)
 

AmritR

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Jun 18, 2017
Messages
86
Location
Alkmaar
I w
I was looking for that ,thank you.
Lenstip didnt review the 9-18.... and I think the resolution is what makes the photo crystal clear .

Anyway ,correct me if I wrong , comparing the resolution :
9-18 , seems to remind a kit lens ..
8-18 -similar to the 12-40
Laowa- really sharp at the center ,corners are not so.
Oly 7-14 -crazy sharp at the center!
Well, the review was quite positive about the Oly 9-18:

https://www.opticallimits.com/olympus--four-thirds-lens-tests/529-oly_m918_456?start=2
A228588D-9E32-42EC-82C5-6386EA38909F.jpeg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


I bought the Leica/Pan 8-18 because it was a little bit wider then my old Nikon 17-35. And the Oly 9-18 a bit less wide.
With hindsight the Oly 9-18 would have been a better match.

imo:
The Laowa and Oly 7-14 are more specialized lenses.
The Pan/Leica a luxury version of the Oly 9-18, but also bigger and more expensive.
 

amit

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Oct 10, 2019
Messages
192
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #49
Compromises & tradeoffs! I have Pen-f with Zuiko 12mm f/2 for travel WA tasks beyond the 12~40mm comfort zone. Have you used or considered panorama stitching feature of Oly cameras? The 12~40mm works nicely for hi-res & stitching. On to your lens quest. I rented the Pan-Leica 8~18mm and would own it in a heartbeat except for the price /per use for me. It is a delightful lens! So is the Zuiko 7~14mm! I just don’t use them enough to warrant full ownership. Have you considered the Zuiko Pro 8mm f/1.8 fisheye? Or, do you need a rectilinear UWA? Just my 2cents as an old guy still loving the hobby & art! 😊
Panoramas will not work on shores and streams.
The fisheye can be cool with the newer bodies . By the way, do you know if the raw file is also defished?
 

hoggdoc

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
May 19, 2010
Messages
231
Location
Longview, Washington USA
Real Name
Wayne
Well... I wouldn't say "soonish" since they haven't even showed any mockup photos of the 8-25mm f/4 yet. I'm pretty sure it won't come out before next spring - if even then.
Also don't forget the up coming sale of the imaging division in the next few months. That will no doubt have a serious impact on any product development in the future.
 

hoggdoc

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
May 19, 2010
Messages
231
Location
Longview, Washington USA
Real Name
Wayne
Huge is reataive :). It is not as if my Pen F and EM-1 II are so much bigger if at all. I also have a FF setup, so either way this is very small to me :).

As to filters, you can't directly add filters to it, only a large filter holder allows you attach nd filters to it. The question really is how often you will use it? If you plan to do that a lot, I would think you would need to go for the PL 8-18.

Personally I have given up with filters for digital, as DR is so large that you generally can get from an image what you'd want anyway. The only reason, IMO, to still use a filter, is an ND filter indeed. Even so, properly stacking a bunch of images could well give you the same effect - I should give that a try some time myself :).

Kind regards, Wim
When talking about ND filters, I have in the past used variable ND filter very effectively. Those threaded into the lens like most filters.
 

PeeBee

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Sep 17, 2012
Messages
1,649
Location
UK
Cool, that’s the Isle of Portland?
Spend a wonderfull holiday in that region a few years ago :)
Yes, it is Portland. I've worked there numerous times but the day I took that image was my one and only leisure trip, specifically to visit the lighthouse. Despite the sun's best efforts, it was a bitterly cold day with plenty of heavy rain showers. The dramatic cloud cover was great for photography, there was also a decent rainbow at one point, but as the rain become more persistent, we had to cut the visit short and didn't get to explore any more of the isle.
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,277
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
Panoramas will not work on shores and streams.
The fisheye can be cool with the newer bodies . By the way, do you know if the raw file is also defished?
With the Oly 8mm f/1.8 Fisheye PRO lens, the RAW files are NOT defished. So if you have a body like the E-M5.3 or E-M1.3 (or others, I think), you can set it to create (and show in the viewfinder) defished jpgs, but you still get unmodified RAW images. Very handy. The only negative is that it is easy to get your fingers or even toes in a shot and not know it because they won't show in the defished viewfinder view. Just to be cleasr, you do not have to use this feature (you can get fishy shots in jpg and RAW if you want).
 

Julia

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Mar 9, 2013
Messages
541
Location
Dresden, Germany
What do you guys say?
I've owned all the lenses you mentioned, save the 7-14. I currently use an Olympus EM1.1, before that an EPL5 and EM5.1, with the 12-40, the Laowa 7.5, and a cheap Panasonic 45-150. Here's my take:

Olympus 9-18
Had this one ages ago, and it was a fantastic little lens. Considering price, size, and weight (tiny and light), it gave me great images. Plus, since the lens doesn't bulb at the front, easy to attach filters if that's what you are interested in. Considering you're using a small(ish) camera body, it would be a good fit. As for corner sharpness etc – I never felt that my copy of the lens was awful. Sure, you can always do better, but mostly you'll also have to go bigger then.

Olympus 12-40
That's been my go-to lens for a couple of years. It covers almost the entire focal range that I usually need (landscape photography) and I wouldn't trade this lens for the world. It's THE most used lens in my arsenal.

Panasonic 8-18
I owned this lens for a couple of months last year, on my trip to the Dolomites, because I wanted a wide lens that wouldn't give me a fisheye look and take filters (the same ones I use on my 12-40). The image quality from this lens is superb, and yes, you can go really wide. But for me, there were two significant downsides:
  1. It's really big. I mean, it's basically like the 12-40. If you're hiking and weight and storage space is something to consider, it's gets tricky quickly. I struggled to get 3 lenses (12-40, 8-18, 45-150) and a camera body into my backpack without applying a lot of force.
  2. The focal length is quite limited. For me, at least, the 8-18 is not a lens I can leave on my camera and just keep it there for the entire day (as I can with the 12-40). That'll depend on what you like to shoot, but I got annoying at having to handle this huge lens all the time just to take a wide-angle shot. The downsides didn't make up for the image quality and the extra millimeters.
Olympus 7-14
Even though I've read fantastic reviews and saw amazing pictures of this lens, it would have required that I also get a completely new filter set. My existing set (for the 12-40) would not have fit and I just couldn't justify the cost. If that's not a consideration for you, and if you're ok with the weight and size, it's certainly a great lens. But keep in mind that, just as with the 8-18, your focal length is limited. So you'll have to carry more weight, in a potentially larger backpack, for a very specialized use case.

Laowa 7.5
That's the winner, in my opinion. I bought a copy last year, and returned it originally because it sucked (sharpness etc). Then had the 8-18, and sold that one because it was too big/heavy for my setup and bought a second copy of the Laowa 7.5. And that one was perfect. This lens is *tiny* and incredibly light – it doesn't take up space and it weighs about as much as a protein bar, so I don't have any hesitation to take it with me. Sure, it covers a very specific use case and only a specific focal length, but honestly, I only used the other wide lenses at their widest anyway. To me, fiddling with changing lenses is always annoying, but with a tiny package like the Laowa, I can live with it considering the great images I can get from it.

Manual focus is a consideration if, as you said, you're having trouble with your eyesight. I keep swearing at the screen of the EM1.1 which just doesn't give me quite the confidence that I want. But unless you're taking photos of something that's right in front of you, the "far distance setting" (the unlimited symbol) on the focal ring does a pretty good job and I've been getting sharp images from this lens when I've used it, even without checking on the rear screen first. I think there's also a hack that lets you set up focus peaking on Olympus bodies (Panasonic has this by default, I can't fathom why Olympus doesn't) that will help.

Oh, and needless to say, this lens rocks because it's not a fisheye look and because it accepts the same filters I have for my 12-40. That sold me.

I do have a few images in my Flickr gallery taken with most of these lenses, if you want to have a look.
 

amit

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Oct 10, 2019
Messages
192
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #56
I've owned all the lenses you mentioned, save the 7-14. I currently use an Olympus EM1.1, before that an EPL5 and EM5.1, with the 12-40, the Laowa 7.5, and a cheap Panasonic 45-150. Here's my take:

Olympus 9-18
Had this one ages ago, and it was a fantastic little lens. Considering price, size, and weight (tiny and light), it gave me great images. Plus, since the lens doesn't bulb at the front, easy to attach filters if that's what you are interested in. Considering you're using a small(ish) camera body, it would be a good fit. As for corner sharpness etc – I never felt that my copy of the lens was awful. Sure, you can always do better, but mostly you'll also have to go bigger then.

Olympus 12-40
That's been my go-to lens for a couple of years. It covers almost the entire focal range that I usually need (landscape photography) and I wouldn't trade this lens for the world. It's THE most used lens in my arsenal.

Panasonic 8-18
I owned this lens for a couple of months last year, on my trip to the Dolomites, because I wanted a wide lens that wouldn't give me a fisheye look and take filters (the same ones I use on my 12-40). The image quality from this lens is superb, and yes, you can go really wide. But for me, there were two significant downsides:
  1. It's really big. I mean, it's basically like the 12-40. If you're hiking and weight and storage space is something to consider, it's gets tricky quickly. I struggled to get 3 lenses (12-40, 8-18, 45-150) and a camera body into my backpack without applying a lot of force.
  2. The focal length is quite limited. For me, at least, the 8-18 is not a lens I can leave on my camera and just keep it there for the entire day (as I can with the 12-40). That'll depend on what you like to shoot, but I got annoying at having to handle this huge lens all the time just to take a wide-angle shot. The downsides didn't make up for the image quality and the extra millimeters.
Olympus 7-14
Even though I've read fantastic reviews and saw amazing pictures of this lens, it would have required that I also get a completely new filter set. My existing set (for the 12-40) would not have fit and I just couldn't justify the cost. If that's not a consideration for you, and if you're ok with the weight and size, it's certainly a great lens. But keep in mind that, just as with the 8-18, your focal length is limited. So you'll have to carry more weight, in a potentially larger backpack, for a very specialized use case.

Laowa 7.5
That's the winner, in my opinion. I bought a copy last year, and returned it originally because it sucked (sharpness etc). Then had the 8-18, and sold that one because it was too big/heavy for my setup and bought a second copy of the Laowa 7.5. And that one was perfect. This lens is *tiny* and incredibly light – it doesn't take up space and it weighs about as much as a protein bar, so I don't have any hesitation to take it with me. Sure, it covers a very specific use case and only a specific focal length, but honestly, I only used the other wide lenses at their widest anyway. To me, fiddling with changing lenses is always annoying, but with a tiny package like the Laowa, I can live with it considering the great images I can get from it.

Manual focus is a consideration if, as you said, you're having trouble with your eyesight. I keep swearing at the screen of the EM1.1 which just doesn't give me quite the confidence that I want. But unless you're taking photos of something that's right in front of you, the "far distance setting" (the unlimited symbol) on the focal ring does a pretty good job and I've been getting sharp images from this lens when I've used it, even without checking on the rear screen first. I think there's also a hack that lets you set up focus peaking on Olympus bodies (Panasonic has this by default, I can't fathom why Olympus doesn't) that will help.

Oh, and needless to say, this lens rocks because it's not a fisheye look and because it accepts the same filters I have for my 12-40. That sold me.

I do have a few images in my Flickr gallery taken with most of these lenses, if you want to have a look.
Thanks for that ,you have some beautiful work there.
Both shots with laowa and 8-18 are impressive.
 

WhidbeyLVR

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Feb 14, 2014
Messages
2,061
Location
Whidbey Island
Real Name
Lyle
Panoramas will not work on shores and streams.
The fisheye can be cool with the newer bodies . By the way, do you know if the raw file is also defished?
I have read this often, but my direct experience is quite the opposite. I have had good results with panos of moving water, such as this.

I understand your preference is to compose and frame the image in-camera, and that is great. Please just be careful about assuming what is and isn’t possible with various post-processing techniques. Just as in-camera technique gives you fulfillment, digital darkroom does so for some of us.
 

RAH

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Dec 1, 2013
Messages
1,277
Location
New Hampshire
Real Name
Rich
I have read this often, but my direct experience is quite the opposite. I have had good results with panos of moving water, such as this.
Nice pano! I don't find it surprising that moving water is easily acommodated in a pano. I mean, like trees, it should be easy enough to blend waves that moved from one stitch to another; harder than leaves, but certainly not too tough. Nice job.
 

amit

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Oct 10, 2019
Messages
192
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #59
I've owned all the lenses you mentioned, save the 7-14. I currently use an Olympus EM1.1, before that an EPL5 and EM5.1, with the 12-40, the Laowa 7.5, and a cheap Panasonic 45-150. Here's my take:

Olympus 9-18
Had this one ages ago, and it was a fantastic little lens. Considering price, size, and weight (tiny and light), it gave me great images. Plus, since the lens doesn't bulb at the front, easy to attach filters if that's what you are interested in. Considering you're using a small(ish) camera body, it would be a good fit. As for corner sharpness etc – I never felt that my copy of the lens was awful. Sure, you can always do better, but mostly you'll also have to go bigger then.

Olympus 12-40
That's been my go-to lens for a couple of years. It covers almost the entire focal range that I usually need (landscape photography) and I wouldn't trade this lens for the world. It's THE most used lens in my arsenal.

Panasonic 8-18
I owned this lens for a couple of months last year, on my trip to the Dolomites, because I wanted a wide lens that wouldn't give me a fisheye look and take filters (the same ones I use on my 12-40). The image quality from this lens is superb, and yes, you can go really wide. But for me, there were two significant downsides:
  1. It's really big. I mean, it's basically like the 12-40. If you're hiking and weight and storage space is something to consider, it's gets tricky quickly. I struggled to get 3 lenses (12-40, 8-18, 45-150) and a camera body into my backpack without applying a lot of force.
  2. The focal length is quite limited. For me, at least, the 8-18 is not a lens I can leave on my camera and just keep it there for the entire day (as I can with the 12-40). That'll depend on what you like to shoot, but I got annoying at having to handle this huge lens all the time just to take a wide-angle shot. The downsides didn't make up for the image quality and the extra millimeters.
Olympus 7-14
Even though I've read fantastic reviews and saw amazing pictures of this lens, it would have required that I also get a completely new filter set. My existing set (for the 12-40) would not have fit and I just couldn't justify the cost. If that's not a consideration for you, and if you're ok with the weight and size, it's certainly a great lens. But keep in mind that, just as with the 8-18, your focal length is limited. So you'll have to carry more weight, in a potentially larger backpack, for a very specialized use case.

Laowa 7.5
That's the winner, in my opinion. I bought a copy last year, and returned it originally because it sucked (sharpness etc). Then had the 8-18, and sold that one because it was too big/heavy for my setup and bought a second copy of the Laowa 7.5. And that one was perfect. This lens is *tiny* and incredibly light – it doesn't take up space and it weighs about as much as a protein bar, so I don't have any hesitation to take it with me. Sure, it covers a very specific use case and only a specific focal length, but honestly, I only used the other wide lenses at their widest anyway. To me, fiddling with changing lenses is always annoying, but with a tiny package like the Laowa, I can live with it considering the great images I can get from it.

Manual focus is a consideration if, as you said, you're having trouble with your eyesight. I keep swearing at the screen of the EM1.1 which just doesn't give me quite the confidence that I want. But unless you're taking photos of something that's right in front of you, the "far distance setting" (the unlimited symbol) on the focal ring does a pretty good job and I've been getting sharp images from this lens when I've used it, even without checking on the rear screen first. I think there's also a hack that lets you set up focus peaking on Olympus bodies (Panasonic has this by default, I can't fathom why Olympus doesn't) that will help.

Oh, and needless to say, this lens rocks because it's not a fisheye look and because it accepts the same filters I have for my 12-40. That sold me.

I do have a few images in my Flickr gallery taken with most of these lenses, if you want to have a look.
Wait how come?
The 12-40 use 62mm filters and the laowa 46mm , it seems like thehood will prevent bigger filter with step down adapter...

Now I have 2 really good deals nearby , both used and told to be in great shape.
8-18 for 650usd
7.5mm for 300usd.

Great prices , I have to make a decision soon:)
 

Julia

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Mar 9, 2013
Messages
541
Location
Dresden, Germany
The 12-40 use 62mm filters and the laowa 46mm , it seems like thehood will prevent bigger filter with step down adapter...
Oh yeah, you just have to use a step-down ring for the filters. But I'm using the same m75 Nisi set for *all* of my lenses (also fit the 8-18 PanaLeica). A step-down or step-up ring is just a few Euros (I think I paid around 10 Euros per ring), whereas a new filter set is a couple hundred Euros :)

And in case that wasn't clear: I'm using the rectangular filters that you slot into a holder. I'm not using circular filters that you screw on the lens.
 

Latest posts

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2009-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom