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Wide angle dilemma

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Ricoh, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. Ricoh

    Ricoh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    906
    Nov 2, 2013
    UK
    Steve
    I'm after some advice please.
    Wide angle photography appeals to me but I'm finding my MZ 14-54 Mk II not wide enough, and the Samyang is a fisheye of course.
    Currently I'm considering:
    O12mm f2.0 - but is this too close to the 14-54?
    O9-18mm
    Panasonic 7-14.

    Apart from optical performance, build quality is also important to me. I try to avoid lenses that are too plastic-like unless of high quality, and anything that feels a bit flimsy. Bearing this in mind, which of the above lenses would be my best option ?
    Thanks.
     
  2. kwalsh

    kwalsh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    775
    Mar 3, 2012
    Baltimore, MD
    12 is by no means an ultra-wide angle but the difference between 12 and 14 is pretty significant. I recall in 35mm film days definitely noticing the difference between a 24 and a 28 and I still do today on m43.

    The 12/2 is very nicely constructed and solid feeling piece of glass.

    The 7-14 isn't metal like the 12 but it feels like a solid and very quality piece of workmanship. It really looses nothing in IQ to the 12/2 at equivalent apertures and is more flexible of course but a lot larger and doesn't take filters. Word of warning the 7-14 has a purple flare issue on the E-M5 and other Olympus bodies (near UV internal reflections that are filtered by Panasonic cameras UV/IR sensor filters but not Olympus cameras which have a slightly wider passband). Search over on DPR for threads on this, especially by Anders W who came up with a clever solution to the problem.

    I don't have experience with the 9-18 but I suspect from a build quality - or really more like build "feel" - I'm sure it is the least of the three. IQ wise it does trail the 7-14 by a little but I'm not sure specifically about its performance at 12.
     
  3. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    If you are happy working with the 14-54 on micro-4/3rds you might look around for a cheap used 4.3rds 9-18 ... I did, and I like it very much on various bodies.
    I have never had the micro-4/3rds wide zooms, but with such lenses I never think fast focus speed is important...
     
  4. wushumr2

    wushumr2 Mu-43 Regular

    137
    May 20, 2013
    I've also got a 4/3 9-18, but I started with Nikons and my Tokina 11-16 was glued to my D7000 when I traveled and that ENDS at 24mm equivalent. If price is no issue, go for the Panasonic (unless you use filters...has no one come up with a solution like was developed for the Nikon 14-24?). Next would be the 12/2 because it has good build quality, fast focusing, and fast aperture. Then would be a 4/3 9-18 (you sacrifice focusing speed and size for build and possibly better optical quality than the m4/3 9-18), then lastly the m4/3 9-18.
     
  5. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    I've ran both the 9-18 and the 7-14 for a while and ended up keeping the 9-18. The 7-14 is marginally better optically and in build, but it's bigger, heavier, doesn't take filters and can suffer from purple flare in some circumstances. OTOH, 7mm is notably wider than 9mm, so if super wide is what you need, then you have your answer!

    To satisfy my wide angle lust, I bought the Sammy fisheye. It's a great lens and defishes quite nicely too.
     
  6. Ricoh

    Ricoh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    906
    Nov 2, 2013
    UK
    Steve
    Thanks guys. What I'd like to see is a series of pictures showing the same scene taken with 7, 9 and 12mm and possibly 14mm to see what I'm getting. Has anyone done this, or know of a link?

    In de-fishing the Sammy, do you set a preset such as huggin and apply to all shots taken with the Sammy? What I find difficult is composing with the fisheye (I like it were I'm deliberately looking for the effect, of course) thus my search for a wide or ultra wide.
     
  7. kwalsh

    kwalsh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    775
    Mar 3, 2012
    Baltimore, MD
  8. jnewell

    jnewell Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 23, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Build quality on the 12/2 is superb, but I have had two of them and neither was sharper than the 7-14/4 at equivalent apertures and FLs.
     
  9. Anthonys

    Anthonys Mu-43 Regular

    167
    Nov 17, 2011
    Sydney
    Anthony
    I had the same dilemma a year or two ago. Rented the olympus 9-18 for a week but wasn't too convinced by the build quality for it's price. The 7-14 looked too big in comparison and the olympus 12 didn't seem to warrant purchase over the much cheaper 14, sure it's metal and slightly wider but was 5 times the price.

    So I ended up with the 7.5 FE plus defish plugins and the 14 pancake. Total cost was less than the 9-18 and I decided the combination solves the same composition challenges. The draw back is having to change lenses and the FE is manual focus and can't preview the defished version until PP.
     
  10. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    842
    Feb 20, 2013
    Maybe try that ultra-cool 9mm fisheye for $99. Take some pics with that and since it will end up being wider than everything else (way wider than the 9mm suggests), you can play around and check and see just how wide you need. If you need widest, get the 7-14, if you need not as wide, go 9-18. If, using something like the handy chart kwalsh posted above, 11mm is fine, you could buy the Panasonic wide-angle converter for $100 which fits on the 14 as well as a couple of the kit zooms.

    For me, once you get up to 14, for most instances, it's wide enough. But I did get the 12-32 over the 14-42 for that purpose (as well as the fact it's tiny). I have the wide converter which I only use to photograph the inside of rooms in houses for work. The 12 would work for this but it doesn't quite get all four walls in. The Samyang fisheye would work but then I'd have to defish.
     
  11. Ricoh

    Ricoh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    906
    Nov 2, 2013
    UK
    Steve
    Thanks again for the feedback - food for thought.
     
  12. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Despite there bring a number of lens choices in the UWA area, none of then completely fits the bill IMHO. It's an area on u43 that needs some improvement:

    - Oly 12mm f2 - expensive for what it is and not as sharp wide open as it should be. Also not really that wide.

    - Panasonic 14mm f2.5 - good value for money and quite sharp, but even less wide than the 12.

    - Oly 9-18 - a good range (but it could do with being a tad wider :wink:). However, IQ is "ok", but nothing more, esp in the corners. Also, it's slow at f4-5.6

    - Panasonic 7-14 - great range and IQ is a bit better than the 9-18. However, it's comparatively large, doesn't take filters and suffers from flare problems.

    - Samyang 7.5 FE - fantastic lens, but manual focus and no EXIF info. Also, not rectilinear (obviously!)

    I'd really like to see an 8mm f2.8 rectilinear prime and a better 9-18. The new Oly 7-14 will probably beat the Panasonic version, but it looks like it too won't take filters and will probably be pretty expensive.
     
  13. Ricoh

    Ricoh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    906
    Nov 2, 2013
    UK
    Steve
    I keep looking on eBay for one of the three logical choices, the P7-14, O9-19 and the O12, bidding to my limit if the lens in question is in good condition. Would probably like to have the 12mm for its speed for interiors, and something wider for landscape.
    I've read far and wide about the purple fringing of the P7-14, especially on olympus bodies, but assume it can be resolved in LR.
     
  14. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    It's not purple fringing - which is relatively trivial to correct - it's a propensity to exhibit blobby purple flare in a lot of light source in or near frame situations on the E-M bodies and I believe to a lesser degree the GH3. Probably something to do with internal reflections and sensor coatings. There's no good or easy Lightroom fix, just a slightly complicated adding a gel UV filter to the back of the lens using OEM parts designed for a different lens solution. I may still try that one soon but it isn't an easy or quick fix.

    I still love the lens, but it flares worse on my E-M1 than it did on my E-M5.
     
  15. Ricoh

    Ricoh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    906
    Nov 2, 2013
    UK
    Steve
    Ah, so the 'purple blobs' aren't easy (or possible) to resolve in post processing - damn.
     
  16. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Nope - and in some circumstances it's a significant problem. It can be minimised by recomposing, but there are times when the composition you want just gives purple blobs.

    I tried the gel filter fix, but it's not ideal either. The filter holder is easy enough to fit, but impossible to buy in the UK - I got mine via a colleague in the US. The gels themselves though are a different story. They are easy to scratch and so consequently need replacing periodically. They're also small and fiddly and IMHO reduce the contrast and sharpness a little too. On the positive side, they are quite effective at removing the blobs (not 100%, but pretty close).

    I'm beginning to wonder if the Samyang 14mm + speedbooster might be a solution... mind you, that would be even bigger than the 7-14, won't take filters, will be manual focus and no EXIF, so maybe not!!
     
  17. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    And not wide enough. The Samyang 7.5 defished may be a better option. Plus it's tiny.
     
  18. Ricoh

    Ricoh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    906
    Nov 2, 2013
    UK
    Steve
    Yeah, I've got one of those. The only downside is that you can't see the end product until sometime later in Lightroom, or similar. Great lens though, both optically and in terms of build standard.
     
  19. cmpatti

    cmpatti Mu-43 Veteran

    263
    May 8, 2011
    Berkeley, CA
    Contra some of the other posters, I've found the rear filter modification to be a simple and complete solution to the "purple blob" problem that the 7-14 sometimes exhibits on Olympus bodies. I ordered the filter holder direct from Panasonic and had it within a week (I'm in the US). It took less than 5 minutes to install. The gel filter was easy to cut and install, and after over a year, I'm still on my first one. (The 3x3 gel sheet could probably produce 9 separate gels, so I doubt I'll ever have to buy another one.) I haven't seen a purple blob since installing the filter, and my testing showed no optical degradation from the filter. (It does have a very slight warming effect which can be corrected in PP, but I hardly ever notice it.) The 7-14 is an awesome lens, but I was ready to give up on it because of the purple flare. Now, I'm completely happy with it.


    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43 mobile app
     
  20. langer318

    langer318 Mu-43 Regular

    83
    Sep 17, 2013
    Upstate, NY
    cmpatti, what filter holder did you need to order from Panasonic?