Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review

Started Apr 18, 2013 | Discussions
mshafik
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Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
Apr 18, 2013

I wrote a little about my impressions on this lens combo with the OMD after using for a few months, and I wanted to share with you, in short, best lens I have, that is, until I try the 75 1.8.

Here's the link:

http://betterfamilyphotos.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-tale-of-seven-cameras-and-one-subject.html

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Corkcampbell
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Thanks! Enjoyed your camera odyssey.
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

Given your photo interests, you will enjoy the 75mm 1.8, I think.

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tjuster1
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It's a Panasonic
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

http://www.panasonic.com/us/consumer/cameras-camcorders/lumix-lenses/H-X025.html

Yeah, I know Panasonic puts "LEICA" on the front, but it's not built by Leica, it's built by Panasonic. This is a true Leica lens: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/586190-REG/Leica_11_602_50mm_f_0_95_Noctilux_M_Aspherical.html.

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DerpyWebber
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Re: It's a Panasonic
In reply to tjuster1, Apr 19, 2013

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the optical formula of Leica design?

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Muffin!

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Scott P
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

Seems like the Olympus 75mm f/1.8 would serve your portrait needs well.  Thanks for sharing.  Some good images.

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Chris Noble
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Branding
In reply to DerpyWebber, Apr 19, 2013

DerpyWebber wrote:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the optical formula of Leica design?

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Muffin!

Just as much as the lens on the Sony RX1 is a "Carl Zeiss" design.

They are just labels that the trademark owners sell to the highest bidder.

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captura
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

This is I believe the best m43 lens, with a DxOMark rating of 21. It is as good as the Sony NEX lens, the 35/1.8, which also scored 21.

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Joseph Prawiro
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

very interesting blog, i can relate to the article you attached

I started with canon g9 and then went to 400D waited for an upgrade then with the addition of family a new member i dediced to upgrade and jumped ship to omd, i gues FF wasnt for me since my apsc camera get left behind all the time.

btw good pictures posted on the blog and have fun taking picture, as other poster said 75mm f1.8 could satisfy your style and DOF needs

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RoelHendrickx
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It is quite clear to me
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

The biggest upgrade you have gone through, is the upgrade in your own skill as photographer.

Looking at the photos from over the years, the first are snapshots (in themselves OK and priceless for the memories they contain, but snapshots), the later ones are accomplished photographs.

And that is good news, because it would be sorry (but this happens often enough with other people) if you would have to conclude that you still have the same skill, but are just using newer and better cameras...

The hardware upgrades are an eternal process, but the skills you have acquired are yours forever.

I bet that if you went back to your older cameras, picked them up now and shot again with them, the shots would look really different from what you produced with the 5 years ago.

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slimandy
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to captura, Apr 19, 2013

captura wrote:

This is I believe the best m43 lens, with a DxOMark rating of 21. It is as good as the Sony NEX lens, the 35/1.8, which also scored 21.

I cringe when I see people say a lens is the best based on a DXO Mark score.

Best for what?

A similar ranking at lensrentals puts it behind the 20mm f1.7 and the 14mm

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/05/wide-angle-micro-43-imatest-results

Does this mean you have to change your mind?

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Chatokun
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to slimandy, Apr 19, 2013

slimandy wrote:

captura wrote:

This is I believe the best m43 lens, with a DxOMark rating of 21. It is as good as the Sony NEX lens, the 35/1.8, which also scored 21.

I cringe when I see people say a lens is the best based on a DXO Mark score.

Best for what?

A similar ranking at lensrentals puts it behind the 20mm f1.7 and the 14mm

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/05/wide-angle-micro-43-imatest-results

Does this mean you have to change your mind?

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www.andrewsandersphotography.co.uk

The test there is also pretty bad to make a decision on. It only judges resolution (and likely on an uncorrected raw). While DxO tests resolution, it also tests light transmission, distortion, vignetting, and CA. Still, even that isn't the best test of a lens, as many other factors are included in choice (especially used like a Portrait lens as the OP has done): quality of bokeh, colors, contrast, and I suppose the immeasurable "character".

The 20mm is an excellent lens. In fact, few m43 primes aren't excellent. Each person needs to make a choice as to whether what one lenses offers better than the other is right for them. 19mm is sharp, quick focusing, cheaper, but slower aperture. 20mm is fast, extremely sharp, pancake size. 25mm has great bokeh, a more standard focal length for those who care, and other benefits, while remaining quite sharp when stopped down if need be (between the 20mm and the 19). 17mm has a great following, despite complaints of it's resolution by simple testers, because the lens works for people. I've seen wonderful shots from it.

Tests are useful for information and comparison, but they aren't the end all discussion to a lens.

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mshafik
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

mshafik wrote:

I wrote a little about my impressions on this lens combo with the OMD after using for a few months, and I wanted to share with you, in short, best lens I have, that is, until I try the 75 1.8.

Here's the link:

http://betterfamilyphotos.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-tale-of-seven-cameras-and-one-subject.html

Guys, I'm really sorry, I made a terrible mistake, and I posted the wrong link, this is not the review I meant:

http://betterfamilyphotos.blogspot.com/2013/04/panasonic-leica-25mm-f14-summilux.html

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mshafik
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Re: It is quite clear to me
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 19, 2013

RoelHendrickx wrote:

The biggest upgrade you have gone through, is the upgrade in your own skill as photographer.

Looking at the photos from over the years, the first are snapshots (in themselves OK and priceless for the memories they contain, but snapshots), the later ones are accomplished photographs.

And that is good news, because it would be sorry (but this happens often enough with other people) if you would have to conclude that you still have the same skill, but are just using newer and better cameras...

The hardware upgrades are an eternal process, but the skills you have acquired are yours forever.

I bet that if you went back to your older cameras, picked them up now and shot again with them, the shots would look really different from what you produced with the 5 years ago.

Thanks a lot for your kind words, but I'm afraid I made a mistake and posted the wrong link.

http://betterfamilyphotos.blogspot.com/2013/04/panasonic-leica-25mm-f14-summilux.html

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slimandy
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Re: Leica 25mm f/1.4 - Pictorial Review
In reply to Chatokun, Apr 19, 2013

Chatokun wrote:

slimandy wrote:

captura wrote:

This is I believe the best m43 lens, with a DxOMark rating of 21. It is as good as the Sony NEX lens, the 35/1.8, which also scored 21.

I cringe when I see people say a lens is the best based on a DXO Mark score.

Best for what?

A similar ranking at lensrentals puts it behind the 20mm f1.7 and the 14mm

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/05/wide-angle-micro-43-imatest-results

Does this mean you have to change your mind?

-- hide signature --

www.andrewsandersphotography.co.uk

The test there is also pretty bad to make a decision on. It only judges resolution (and likely on an uncorrected raw). While DxO tests resolution, it also tests light transmission, distortion, vignetting, and CA. Still, even that isn't the best test of a lens, as many other factors are included in choice (especially used like a Portrait lens as the OP has done): quality of bokeh, colors, contrast, and I suppose the immeasurable "character".

Excatly right! Thankyou!

The 20mm is an excellent lens. In fact, few m43 primes aren't excellent. Each person needs to make a choice as to whether what one lenses offers better than the other is right for them. 19mm is sharp, quick focusing, cheaper, but slower aperture. 20mm is fast, extremely sharp, pancake size. 25mm has great bokeh, a more standard focal length for those who care, and other benefits, while remaining quite sharp when stopped down if need be (between the 20mm and the 19). 17mm has a great following, despite complaints of it's resolution by simple testers, because the lens works for people. I've seen wonderful shots from it.

Yep. 17mm f1.8 for me. It's the focal length that most suits me. It's also a very good lens, reasonably fast aperture, fast to focus, nice compact size. DxOMark and lenstip don't consider most of the reasons I bought the lens.

Tests are useful for information and comparison, but they aren't the end all discussion to a lens.

Yes. You can't quote a table of lenses from an test as being the right answer. They ignore too many variables and they don't know our individual requiremrnts anyway.

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DerpyWebber
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In reply to Chris Noble, Apr 19, 2013

Actually, the lens on the RX1 is made by Carl Zeiss. You're thinking of the RX100, I think.

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Muffin!

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pcb_dpr
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Re: Branding
In reply to Chris Noble, Apr 19, 2013

What I've seen/heard, both in print and in conversations at photo shows, is that Leica/Zeiss do the lens designs, specify materials and quality control standards. Though no longer in production, Contax-branded Zeiss lenses were built by Zeiss employees in Kyocera's factory in Japan. They don't appear to be simply allowing their name to be stamped on others' product without any input/involvement.

I suppose you could maintain that everyone involved is lying, but I'd be interested if there were any real evidence to support this.

Chris Noble wrote:

DerpyWebber wrote:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the optical formula of Leica design?

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Muffin!

Just as much as the lens on the Sony RX1 is a "Carl Zeiss" design.

They are just labels that the trademark owners sell to the highest bidder.

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pinnacle
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Leica is very careful about who publishes it's name...
In reply to tjuster1, Apr 19, 2013

tjuster1 wrote:

http://www.panasonic.com/us/consumer/cameras-camcorders/lumix-lenses/H-X025.html

Yeah, I know Panasonic puts "LEICA" on the front, but it's not built by Leica, it's built by Panasonic. This is a true Leica lens: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/586190-REG/Leica_11_602_50mm_f_0_95_Noctilux_M_Aspherical.html.

The lens has "Leica" printed right out front for all the world to see and Leica corporation has given it's oversight and approval for the design and manufacturing process. If you have issues with whether the lens is a "Leica" or not, perhaps you should take up your case with Leica Corporate in Germany?

Dan

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pinnacle
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In reply to mshafik, Apr 19, 2013

mshafik wrote:

mshafik wrote:

I wrote a little about my impressions on this lens combo with the OMD after using for a few months, and I wanted to share with you, in short, best lens I have, that is, until I try the 75 1.8.

Here's the link:

http://betterfamilyphotos.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-tale-of-seven-cameras-and-one-subject.html

Guys, I'm really sorry, I made a terrible mistake, and I posted the wrong link, this is not the review I meant:

http://betterfamilyphotos.blogspot.com/2013/04/panasonic-leica-25mm-f14-summilux.html

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You do not owe anyone an apology. Your blog is wonderful. Both stories are a good read for anyone interested in some insight about what kind of camera they are choosing to use and the factors to consider in that choice.

Please keep posting more stories. I enjoy reading them.

Dan

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clengman
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Looks like a sigma lens to me.
In reply to pcb_dpr, Apr 19, 2013

Sigma Patent for 25mm f/1.4.

The above design was patented 6/16/2011. Two months or so before the panasonic 25mm was made available to the public.

Compare to the Panasonic design below:

They're the same.

pcb_dpr wrote:

What I've seen/heard, both in print and in conversations at photo shows, is that Leica/Zeiss do the lens designs, specify materials and quality control standards. Though no longer in production, Contax-branded Zeiss lenses were built by Zeiss employees in Kyocera's factory in Japan. They don't appear to be simply allowing their name to be stamped on others' product without any input/involvement.

I suppose you could maintain that everyone involved is lying, but I'd be interested if there were any real evidence to support this.

Chris Noble wrote:

DerpyWebber wrote:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the optical formula of Leica design?

-- hide signature --

Muffin!

Just as much as the lens on the Sony RX1 is a "Carl Zeiss" design.

They are just labels that the trademark owners sell to the highest bidder.

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Chris Noble
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Re: Leica is very careful about who publishes it's name...
In reply to pinnacle, Apr 19, 2013

pinnacle wrote:

tjuster1 wrote:

http://www.panasonic.com/us/consumer/cameras-camcorders/lumix-lenses/H-X025.html

Yeah, I know Panasonic puts "LEICA" on the front, but it's not built by Leica, it's built by Panasonic. This is a true Leica lens: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/586190-REG/Leica_11_602_50mm_f_0_95_Noctilux_M_Aspherical.html.

The lens has "Leica" printed right out front for all the world to see and Leica corporation has given it's oversight and approval for the design and manufacturing process. If you have issues with whether the lens is a "Leica" or not, perhaps you should take up your case with Leica Corporate in Germany?

Dan

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Life is good.

You call it "oversight and approval", I'll call it marketing a trademarked brand, and I'm in the IP business. My guess is that it's both.

Actually, I don't really care how much Panasonic paid for the brand license, or whose name they put on the lens. As long as the lens is good, that's all that matters. I'm sure that Leica uses licensing professionals to make sure their licensing deals don't dilute the brand value.

Here's a "Polaroid" camera. Polaroid went bankrupt years ago and consists entirely of a branding activity for the investors who bought the trademarks:

http://www.polaroid.com/iM1836-android-camera

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