Olympus 45mm, bad/unsharp copy?

Started Oct 8, 2012 | Discussions thread
SammyToronto
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Re: Olympus 45mm, bad/unsharp copy?
In reply to DElliott, Oct 8, 2012

DElliott wrote:

wazeggie wrote:

I've been using the 45mm for some time now, and to be honest i don't find it to be as astounishing as all the reviews suggest. On different forums/sites i hear people rave about this lens, but i can't seem to relate to all these postive sounds. Ofcourse, it is a nice lens, but i find it quite unsharp at lower apertures. From f/4.0 i think it is indeed really sharp, but below that, not at all.

So now i am questioning myself, do i have a bad copy, or is it just me expecting too much from a rather cheap lens. I've set it up on my epm1, on a tripod, 2s shutter delay, and compared sharpness via RAW files in LR. In the link you can see a 100% crop on f/1.8, and on the right with f/4.0. Focus wasn't changed, just the aperture.

What do you think?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/wazeggie/8066822650/

Although I haven't noticed such dramatic differences between f1.8 and f4.0, I'm also not particularly impressed with my Oly 45.  I'm not sure mine ever gets as sharp as yours does.  But I think part of my disappointment may be due to my comparison of it with the Panasonic 20, which I find noticeably sharper.  Photozone's and Lensrental.com's tests of the two lenses also show the 20 being at least somewhat sharper than the 45.  Perhaps that's the difference I'm seeing.  Or perhaps I have a bad copy.  Unfortunately, I'm well beyond any return period.

slrgear.com has a useful graphical representation of sharpness levels at different FL/aperture combinations. According to them (and the graphs), the 45mm should be sharp in the center at widest aperture and sharp pretty much everywhere starting at f4 all the way to f11, which are also my findings. The panny 20mm is similarly sharp wide-open, but less sharp at higher apertures (relative to the 45mm, but still sharp in its own right), which is also consistent with my experience.

Check for yourselves (move the slider up and down to change aperture):

45mm:

http://slrgear.com/reviews/zproducts/olympus45f18m/tloader.htm

20mm:

http://slrgear.com/reviews/zproducts/panasonic20f17/tloader.htm

Based on that and the troubleshooting/experiences the original poster and others have contributed, it does seem like he/she has a bad copy and should return it while they can.

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