Olympus 12-40 f/2.8 vs the older 14-35 f/2

Started 8 months ago | Discussions thread
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gregbartgis
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Olympus 12-40 f/2.8 vs the older 14-35 f/2
8 months ago

Hi all!

I want to stir the waters - or muck - a bit by asking for  opinions, experiences and guidance. As anyone can see from my gear list, my collection of gear is rather eclectic, unorthodox and a somewhat mangled jumble of everything under the sun. Of course, listing my entire gear collection on this site is so excruciatingly complicated and slow that I've listed only a tiny fraction of the gear I actually own. My question here has to do with comparing two lenses. They are the new Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8 and the older 14-35mm f/2  4/3 zoom. Forgetting the slight difference in range, the weight and other meaningless differences, I'm most interested in optical performance. All apertures and throughout the zoom range. I'm biased toward the faster lens as I do a fair amount of low light shooting without flash and I'm aware of the differences in weight and size. I already have the 7-14mm f/4 Oly and love it. I always use my cameras set for manual focus as I've never found auto focus reliable enough for my needs. I like what I see covered in the specs of the 14-35 - it being marketed as among their Super High Grade (SHG) range of lenses which include dust/drip proofing and mechanically interlocked manual focussing. I love the feel of my 7-14. I'm counting on modern high end zooms to produce as good quality images as any prime within their range. I have primes mostly because they're either faster or because they focus closer - as in  macros. For walk around shooting I prefer the widest of wides up to short tele - so, two lenses and another body with a macro attached. I'll carry a  medium longer tele to shorten the distance between me and the subject and not much else. I'm using two E-M5's as my workhorse cameras and am planning to get an E-M1 soon. I'll spend my money on the best of the two lenses. I prefer the 14-35, but  will the 12-40 prove better? I know I'm asking a lot, and the only responses I'll weigh are going to be by those of us (you) who have actually had the experience of using both. Opinions are welcomed, but actual experience is what i'm seeking. Tell me (us) your story!

Thanks!

 gregbartgis's gear list:gregbartgis's gear list
Voigtlander Nokton 17.5mm F0.95 Aspherical Olympus PEN E-PL1 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH OIS +44 more
Olympus E-M1
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