Wide Prime Options

PeeBee

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Thanks Mike. I did intend to get all 3 Sigma 1.4s. I started with the 30, since it filled a gap between my P20 and S60 that I had at the time. I then sold the S60 after I bought 40-150 Pro, since it covered 60mm @ f2.8. The S56 was next on my list, but I found great deals on both O45 f1.2 and O60 f2.8 Macro this summer, so it's hard to justify adding the 56mm now. The 16mm was therefore promoted to the top of the list and this thread was to consider the alternatives.

The only lenses I've had with OIS are consumer grade Panasonic zooms. I'd rather have a faster aperture than rely on IS..
 

PeeBee

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Yes, must not appear rude. Maybe you should of grabbed two? ☺
I think I only need the one :biggrin:

Yesterday, my wife suggested I buy yet another EM1.2 to get one of the other f1.2 Pro lenses for free, and sell the camera to offset the cost. She's changed since her visit to Stepford :laugh1: Shame the offer has now expired.
 

PeeBee

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The Siggy 16 has arrived. Ya could have warned me it's so BIG!!

I'm joking, I was fully aware of its size, marginally larger than my 45 f/1.2 though slightly lighter. It balances nicely on the EM1.2, though might be a tad front heavy on small MFT bodies.

Due to it arriving on the first day of lock-down (by intention), I've only tried it around the house. The FOV feels wider than I expected. AF is very snappy. I've only looked at images on camera, they look plenty sharp and DOF is nicely shallow at f/1.4.

So far, the vibes are positive :thumbup:
 
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The Siggy 16 has arrived. Ya could have warned me it's so BIG!!
It's the same size and weight as the 12-40 pro, right?

So far, the vibes are positive :thumbup:
That sounds really good. I saw a good deal on a used 16 1.4 the other day. I just find the size & weight a bit much for a prime.
I would be very interested in any comparisons between it and the venerable 12-40 pro.
 

PeeBee

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It's the same size and weight as the 12-40 pro, right?
The Sigma is 7mm longer and 25g heavier, but in real world terms, there isn't much difference.


That sounds really good. I saw a good deal on a used 16 1.4 the other day. I just find the size & weight a bit much for a prime.
I would be very interested in any comparisons between it and the venerable 12-40 pro.
The main advantage with the Sigma is its 2 stops faster max aperture. I've also noticed that geometric distortion seems really low, however that might be just in my mind, I need to compare it to the 12-40 @ 16mm. I'm a little limited in my testing opportunities at moment since we're back in lockdown. I have a really busy weekend ahead but when I get the chance I'll do some comparisons.
 

PeeBee

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A little update on this, the Siggy 16 has been returned :eek-31:

When I tried to register for the lens warranty, it was rejected due to the lens serial number not being listed as an authorised UK import. It also appeared to have a tendency to back focus and I've seen this mentioned on some online user reviews too, so I'm reluctant to order a replacement. The PL15 would be have been the obvious alternative, but since DXO have recently released PL4 with DeepPRIME nr, I'm going to see if that gives me the confidence to push the iso higher, in which case I might get away with the 12-40 f2.8 for my low light, wide angle option. A zoom would certainly be more versatile and PL4 added no additional weight to my camera bag :)
 
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A little update on this, the Siggy 16 has been returned :eek-31:

When I tried to register for the lens warranty, it was rejected due to the lens serial number not being listed as an authorised UK import. It also appeared to have a tendency to back focus and I've seen this mentioned on some online user reviews too, so I'm reluctant to order a replacement. The PL15 would be have been the obvious alternative, but since DXO have recently released PL4 with DeepPRIME nr, I'm going to see if that gives me the confidence to push the iso higher, in which case I might get away with the 12-40 f2.8 for my low light, wide angle option. A zoom would certainly be more versatile and PL4 added no additional weight to my camera bag :)
Interesting.
I had a little photo shoot yesterday (low light, indoors) and used the 25mm f1.8 and 17mm 1.8.
Those had been my low light options so far but I realised they may not be adequate during the darker months. I was taking pictures of a friends kid in christmas outfit, he doesn't understand the concept of sitting still so increasing the shutter speed was not an option. My prime lenses were already pushing the ISO beyond my previous limit, which was 3200. It is the general consensus that ISO 6400 is still decent with the newest sensors, but I still feel ISO 1600 and below is desirable for best quality.

After the shooting I realised I have a new 17mm f1.2 lens at home from Olympus, and how much better it would've been for the shooting. Half of the keepers were shot with the 17mm 1.8, using the larger lens would've allowed me to reduce ISO even further.
Intrigued, I took the 17mm 1.2 out for a shoot today as the sun was starting to set - first time outside the house for this lens.

Wouldn't you guess it, shooting around f2-f4 the images came out with outstanding sharpness and clarity with this lens. The question is how often does one need outstanding sharpness in day-to-day use.

That lens is also a ~700€ resale value as it is still like new, so I'm considering selling it.

I could get a used Sigma 16mm f1.4 for around 250€ and have similar low light capability, and I was seriously considering that option. Heck, for 700 I could get 2 or 3 Sigmas. And they can change the mount for you if you switch systems, which is a huge plus for the Sigma should the JIP Olympus acquisition turn out to be a dead end.

But these mixed statements about the quality of the 16mm f1.4 are making me reconsider. I adore the Olympus, but it really is a luxury item for me. Who actually needs luxury?
 
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PeeBee

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Interesting.
I had a little photo shoot yesterday (low light, indoors) and used the 25mm f1.8 and 17mm 1.8.
Those had been my low light options so far but I realised they may not be adequate during the darker months. I was taking pictures of a friends kid in christmas outfit, he doesn't understand the concept of sitting still so increasing the shutter speed was not an option. My prime lenses were already pushing the ISO beyond my previous limit, which was 3200. It is the general consensus that ISO 6400 is still decent with the newest sensors, but I still feel ISO 1600 and below is desirable for best quality.

After the shooting I realised I have a new 17mm f1.2 lens at home from Olympus, and how much better it would've been for the shooting. Half of the keepers were shot with the 17mm 1.8, using the larger lens would've allowed me to reduce ISO even further.
Intrigued, I took the 17mm 1.2 out for a shoot today as the sun was starting to set - first time outside the house for this lens.

Wouldn't you guess it, shooting around f2-f4 the images came out with outstanding sharpness and clarity with this lens. The question is how often does one need outstanding sharpness in day-to-day use.

That lens is also a ~700€ resale value as it is still like new, so I'm considering selling it.

I could get a used Sigma 16mm f1.4 for around 250€ and have similar low light capability, and I was seriously considering that option. Heck, for 700 I could get 2 or 3 Sigmas. And they can change the mount for you if you switch systems, which is a huge plus for the Sigma should the JIP Olympus acquisition turn out to be a dead end.

But these mixed statements about the quality of the 16mm f1.4 are making me reconsider. I adore the Olympus, but it really is a luxury item for me. Who actually needs luxury?
I would say don't let my experience put you off trying the Sigmas. There are more good reviews on the internet than bad, but also remember that these are relatively cheap lenses and you can't expect them to offer Oly Pro quality. I may have been unlucky (it happens frequently). If I hadn't been tempted by PL4 this week, which could possibly boost the low light performance of all my lenses, I may have ordered a replacement 16mm and gave it another go. Since I have bought PL4, I think it makes sense to see how much benefit that gives me before I make any further decisions.
 
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but also remember that these are relatively cheap lenses and you can't expect them to offer Oly Pro quality. I may have been unlucky (it happens frequently). If I hadn't been tempted by PL4 this week, which could possibly boost the low light performance of all my lenses, I may have ordered a replacement 16mm and gave it another go. Since I have bought PL4, I think it makes sense to see how much benefit that gives me before I make any further decisions.
Thanks, now you really sold it to me (the Oly pro!). :D
I have plenty enough lenses that don't offer Pro quality, I don't need another one (especially not one that is huge).
For example, I still have the PL15, and 15 f1.7 vs 16 f1.4 is not a big enough difference to warrant a new investment. 17 1.2 vs 17 1.8 is a more noticable difference.

Also this review: Sigma 16mm f/1.4 DC DN C vs Olympus M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8 – The complete comparison (mirrorlesscomparison.com)
showed that the Sigmas are really quite good for the money, and the 17 1.8 is really expensive for what it is.
Buying used these lenses are often within 50€ of each other. Here, you are actually paying Olympus for the smaller size.

But look at the corner sharpness at f 5.6 - here the lead Sigma has is not that impressive (I tend to shoot landscapes between f4 and f8). And also chromatic aberrations - I know I can correct these in software but I don't want to edit every image, and CA is the reason I got rid of most of my Panasonic glass.

And lastly sealing, the sigma is 'supposed to be splash-proof' but there is no guarantee. With an Olympus body and PRO lens you can be sure it will survive just about anything the elements can throw at it.

If I ever buy into an APS-C system, I will give the Sigmas another good look though. A 30mm f1.4 would become a 45mm equivalent FOV, smaller than the 16mm and perfect for a walkaround lens.
 

PakkyT

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I would say don't let my experience put you off trying the Sigmas. There are more good reviews on the internet than bad, but also remember that these are relatively cheap lenses and you can't expect them to offer Oly Pro quality.
Sigma is a big lens making company and designs & manufacturers more lenses than Oly or Panny put together by a LARGE margin. And they make a wide range of lenses from the "kit" level to the "pro" level. Heck even Oly uses Sigma designs in some of their lenses and I suspect a lot of other "Branded" (Canon, Nikon, etc.) lenses are actually care of Sigma. So I wouldn't base an opinion on Sigma on one lens especially if it was one of their cheaper ones.

And speaking of Oly Pro quality, some have compared the Sigma patent to the Olympus published design for the 45 f1.2 Pro and found them to be a complete match. So it would seem you can sometimes compare Sigma to Oly Pro quality if that OIy Pro Quality is really Sigma in sheep's clothing. 😜
 
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And speaking of Oly Pro quality, some have compared the Sigma patent to the Olympus published design and found them to be a complete match. So it would seem you can sometimes compare Sigma to Oly Pro quality if that OIy Pro Quality is really Sigma in sheep's clothing. 😜
True - thanks for giving more insight on the process. I read about this Sigma/Olympus ambiguity a few times but as you said, Sigma is a large company and they make lots of different lenses for different use cases and mounts. The Micro Four Thirds lenses are recycled APS-C designs, though.
I just wrote a longer response just a second before you that rules out the 16 1.4 specifically for my use case on M43.
I'm sure there's this and lots of other high quality Sigma lenses that make a ton of sense on different systems but I think the 16 1.4 specifically is too large for what it offers on M43 compared to e.g. the PL15mm f1.7.
 
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