audio recordings to compare differences in focus speed between Panny 20 and Oly 17

Started Sep 3, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Pikme
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audio recordings to compare differences in focus speed between Panny 20 and Oly 17
Sep 3, 2013

Many people complain about the slow focusing of the Panny 20 and others insist it isn't slow to focus at all. I was intrigued by reports from people I generally trust that demonstrate it has fast focus, while so many people strongly believe that it is the slowest focus lens in the lineup.

So I tested my own copy of the Panny 20 (first version), using the Oly 17 f1.8 as the comparison lens and my EM5 as camera. Obviously this only relates to my own copies of these lenses, but I thought some might find it interesting nonetheless.  I'm not trying to 'prove' one lens is 'better' than the other, but trying to figure out for myself why I've never really gotten on with my copy of the Panny 20.  I know it is a sharp lens and has nice color and contrast, but I've just never enjoyed using it.

I'm not a scientist and haven't ever posted these sorts of comparisons because I know I'll get raked over the coals for not doing something right. Feel free to post comments and criticisms, but try not to assassinate me in the process!

First, I recorded each lens while I continually pressed the shutter button to AF while moving the camera from random subject to random subject around the room for about a minute each. This was done indoors during the day. The room has a full wall of windows with indirect light and there were no electric lights on. It was easily light enough to read comfortably (we never have lights on during the day), but there are definitely some shadow areas and contrast is variable about the room. Listen to the entire recording of each in order to hear the differences.

https://soundcloud.com/pikme/olympus-17nr

https://soundcloud.com/pikme/panasonic-20nr

The next test was moving each camera/lens combination back and forth to focus on the same two subjects, one farther away and one closer.

https://soundcloud.com/pikme/olympus-172nr

https://soundcloud.com/pikme/panasonic-202nr

The last test involved moving the camera back and forth to focus on the same two subjects (some distance between subjects but not as extreme as the previous test), while holding the camera very close to the microphone.

https://soundcloud.com/pikme/olympus-close-upnr

https://soundcloud.com/pikme/panasonic-close-upnr

My conclusions are in next post.

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Roberto M.

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