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So tell me about lenses...

Discussion in 'Micro Four Thirds Forum' started by Fuddlestack, Dec 9, 2012.

  1. Fuddlestack

    Fuddlestack SC Regular

    138
    Dec 1, 2010
    Alsace, France
    I have an E-P3 + 14-42mm on the way for Christmas. My birthday looms mid-January, and seems an excellent opportunity to build a small battery of lenses. My shooting habits flip from street to landscape, the latter mainly during long-distance cycling expeditions.

    I'd be delighted to receive people's recommendations for a couple of lenses to supplement the somewhat bread-&-butter 14-42, bearing in mind that the available budget will not be excessive.

    Cheers!
     
  2. greyelm

    greyelm SC Top Veteran

    844
    Oct 1, 2011
    London, England
    I recommend the Pana 20mm f1.7. This is a superb lens, check the image thread. Being a pancake it will make the camera pocketable.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    You should certainly have either the Olympus 17mm (and there should be a BUNCH of them hitting the used market soon with them releasing a fancy new 17mm) or the Panasonic 20mm (I shot almost exclusively with that lens for over a year). If you have either of those, you can probably leave your kit zoom at home.

    The Panasonic 45-200 is a steal of a lens in the price to performance ratio.

    Enjoy your new camera! The E-P3 is great camera.
     
  4. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    The trouble is, they're all good ... prepare therefore to be deluged by a torrent of advice by people to buy their own favourite!
    (mine's the 17mm so you should definitely buy one)

    Judging by your signature, you're not exactly a beginner ... pick a couple of favourite focal lengths and start shooting;
     
  5. greyelm

    greyelm SC Top Veteran

    844
    Oct 1, 2011
    London, England
    +1 on the 45-200, fantastic for wild life.
     
  6. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
  7. stanleyk

    stanleyk SC Top Veteran

    558
    May 23, 2011
    Taylor, Texas
    I used MFT for awhile. There are some really good lenses. I tend to agree that the Panasonic 20mm is the best lens I used with that format from a price/performance ratio. I don't particularly like zoom lenses so I'm not sure on those. Actually the Panasonic 14mm is really for the price. The Olympus 12mm is supposed to be very good, but now you are at a price point where you better like the focal length. The Olympus 45mm is a very good lens too.
     
  8. Fuddlestack

    Fuddlestack SC Regular

    138
    Dec 1, 2010
    Alsace, France
    Thanks, all.

    I do have a liking for wide angle and most of my formative shooting was done with primes: in the 60s you took whatever Kodak had glued into the lens cell, but even in the 80s I did most of my stuff with a 24, a 50 and a doubler. Still got them all, too. Well, just one of the Kodaks.

    Anyway, plenty of grist for the mill here. The Panny 20 is a definite runner - nice bokeh on the DP Review shots, and decent sharpness across the frame from 2.8 to 4, judging by their test results. I do like short f rather than standard, and the 17 edges a bit that way with a good shove from the $$$ aspect. But that converter has really got my attention - definite wish-list item.

    Thing is, I've got a TZ30 being re-assessed by the local camera shop - I say it's just a lousy camera, they say it might be defective and have sent it for repair - and if it is simply lousy and I get a refund I'll swap it for a GF3 to produce on Christmas Day for the missus. If that happens, we could build a nice wee pool of lenses. We did with OM1's & 2s in the 80s, then diverged.

    Another one I've been looking at is the Samyang 7.5 f/3.5, but I'm not sure it wouldn't just be a novelty that'd wear thin pretty quickly. Anyone tried it?

    Cheers.
     
  9. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I tried the fisheye, but didn't give it a fair chance. Using one well is a discipline unto itself and for me the learning curve was just too steep. In the hands of most users frankly, it is a novelty.
     
  10. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. SC All-Pro

    Nov 8, 2012
    New Mexico
    Larry
    My personal favorites are the PL Summilux 25mm f1.4 and the Olympus 45mm f1.8, and I'll be getting the new 17mm f1.8. I'm not really a wide angle guy, so probably will buy the cheaper Panasonic 14 over the olympus 12.

    The panasonic 20mm is a wonderful lens, but I sold mine to help finance the purchase of the PL25mm, which, though large, is really a "must have" lens for m4.3 shooters who love the traditional "normal" point of view.

    Good luck. Enjoy your new camera. I've found m4/3 meets all my needs for a digital system.
     
  11. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    The fisheye is a cool novelty lens if you have your more critical lenses covered. I have one, use it very rarely, but love it when I find the right context for it. For a wide angle prime, it's tough to beat the cost effectiveness of the Panasonic 14mm, which is optically decent, reasonably fast at f2.5, and has incredible AF speed. The Olympic 12mm is that much better in each respect, but at a huge premium. The 20 is a nice lens and great value if the focal length works for you and you don't care about fast AF. But it's really a pleasing lens optically with a nice fast aperture. The 25 is a good bit better, but also a good bit more expensive. The 14 and 20 might be a good way to go on a budget. The 12, the 25, and the soon to be released 17 f1.8 a great combination if you have some money to burn.

    At the portrait lengths, the Olympic 45 is the value of the decade and the 75 is an amazing lens at about double the price.

    -Ray
     
  12. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Jul 3, 2010
    If I could only have two lenses, they would be the Panasonic 14/2.5 (sells for ~$170 on Ebay) and the Olympus 45mm f/1.8 (Cameta sells like-new factory demos for $330). Both are small, fast focusing, and tiny.
     
  13. CapoDave

    CapoDave SC Veteran

    225
    Dec 3, 2011
    Mission Viejo Ca
    Dave Kavlich
    I don't have the 14, but the 12 on my E P3 has produced some spectacular images.
     
  14. Lili

    Lili SC Hall of Famer

    Oct 17, 2010
    Dallas, TX
    Lili
    love my 14mm and long to try the 45....I
     
  15. Fuddlestack

    Fuddlestack SC Regular

    138
    Dec 1, 2010
    Alsace, France
    Thanks for the great advice, everyone - just the kind of thing I was after.

    Poking through our collection just now I came across a 1950s hot-shoe Acoll viewfinder for Leica-style cameras. It's for an f=35mm lens. It even has parallax adjustment. With the 4:3 crop factor it should be fine with the 17mm lens. I also have a collapsible 50mm Leica M39 lens. Since an adapter should place the lens mount at the same distance from the sensor as it would have been from the film in a 35mm camera, I should theoretically be able to collapse it into the body of the E-P3... shouldn't I? Dunno how desirable that would be, although it would be nifty if it worked.
     
  16. stanleyk

    stanleyk SC Top Veteran

    558
    May 23, 2011
    Taylor, Texas
    I agree with this. That 14mm is really underrated. The 45 is excellent.
     
  17. ajramirez

    ajramirez SC All-Pro

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    Antonio
    Distance to the sensor should theoretically be the same, but the room around the sensor is much smaller than the room around the 35mm frame. I seriously doubt it would collapse into the body.
     
  18. ajramirez

    ajramirez SC All-Pro

    Jul 9, 2010
    Caguas, Puerto Rico
    Antonio
    When I had my m4/3 system, I had the following lenses: Oly 9-18, Lumix 14 2.5, 20 1.7, 25 1.4 and 45 2.8. FWIW, I was extremely happy with this set. The 25 ended up replacing the 20 (except for when I wanted an extremely compact set up) because even though the 20 is a terrific lens, there is something really special about the 25. Having said that, there was not a bad lens in that group.

    I think you really cannot go wrong with any of the current m4/3 offerings. Even the 14-42 Oly kit lens is quite competent.

    Cheers,

    Antonio
     
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Fuddlestack

    Fuddlestack SC Regular

    138
    Dec 1, 2010
    Alsace, France
    Thought of that, but I have a hammer. :smile:
     
  20. grebeman

    grebeman Old Codgers Group

    Jul 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Barrie
    I seem to recall in the early days of m4/3 that this came up in discussion, possibly on the mu-43 forum, and the conclusion was that collapsing this lens into an m4/3 body was most unadvisable.

    Barrie