Why f1.2?

Started 7 months ago | Discussions thread
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Ednaz
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Why f1.2?
7 months ago

For the m4/3 camera bodies I own - GX7 and G6 - with contrast detect focusing, an f1.2 lens makes focusing fast... REALLY fast.  I took the 42.5 f1.2 out on my G6 just for the heck of it when playing with my dogs.  Tracking my herding dog driving his 22 inch 15 pound plastic ball around the yard and through obstacles, and being able to capture decent shots of my frisbee dog when I'm also having to be the thrower, are my acid tests of focus speed.

With the kit zoom, or with the 60 2.8, m4/3 (at least what I own) doesn't pass the test, I lose more pictures than I get.  My DSLR just captures everything, whether I'm shooting with an f1.4 or f2.8 or f4.  My Fuji XPro1, with an f1.4, gets really close to the DSLR.  However, the 42.5 f1.2 gets really close to the DSLR also.

I doubled up on the test, forcing the lens to f1.2 for all shots, and trying to track and shoot.  Surprising how many shots it actually nailed.  I'm VERY forgiving of when it focused on the dogs' ears and missed the eyes, or the nose and missed the eyes - hey, it's f1.2...  If I was shooting seriously, I'd have been at f2.8 or f4 for exposure, and the speed of focusing combined with a thoughtful choice of aperture, I'd have gotten DSLR level results.  When this combo missed action focus, it missed by an inch or two.  At f4, it would have never missed.

And then there's the bokeh.  Love it.  At this distance, only the close side of his head is sharp (but it's freaky sharp.)

At an action distance, most of the shots were eye-sharp... when they weren't eye sharp, they'd locked on to his nose... and the DOF at f1.2 won't make sharp eyes then.  Or locked on his ruff or ears, which misses sharp eyes.  I did a little math, if I"d been at my usual f4 for shooting action, I'd have caught every shot.

at this distance, nose to front of ears sharp.

And at portrait distance, straight on... the nose is blurred (good thing because he bumped it hard and was bleeding a bit) and about two inches behind the eyes is blurred.

I'd really like two more f1.2 primes.  Something around a 35mm equivalent, and something around a 20mm equivalent.  If I had that, I'd have a perfect 3 lens m4/3 kit for what I shoot.

Fujifilm X-Pro1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7
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