Oly 75mm or...

Started 5 months ago | Discussions
kcinesser
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Oly 75mm or...
5 months ago

Hey all,

In need of some advice. Had the EM5 for a while now, and looking to add a lens or two to my setup. So far, I have the regular 12-50mm kit lens, the 17mm, and the 45mm. This has worked well for most of my uses, with the 17mm staying on the camera most times, and the 45mm finding quite a bit of use, but sometimes I find myself wishing for a little more reach.

I'm a big fan of primes, so I've been looking at the Olympus 75mm quite a bit over recent weeks. Looking at some sample pictures, I'm loving the DoF/isolation it provides and the sharpness/bokeh is very attractive to me, as well as the quick aperture for night. I do, however, have some concerns. Mostly the odd focal length, and the price.

For those that have used/own the 75mm, how do you find using it? Obviously it's pretty great for portraits, but how about for just general use? Do you find it difficult to use as a walk around? For example, if I were at the zoo and needed some reach, does the 75mm do the job? I guess my question is, what situations do you find yourself using this lens the most?

If it weren't so pricey, I wouldn't be so hesitant, but it would easily be my most expensive lens purchase. Are there many other alternatives out there? I've seen the Sigma 60mm for a fraction of the price, but it doesn't seem to give a whole lot more reach than my 45mm, doesn't have the fast aperture, and optically I've heard it can't really touch the 75mm.

Thoughts, advice, stories?

Thanks in advance.

mferencz
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

It works well, but it takes getting used to.  150mm is definetly telephoto.  There is a bit of a tunnel feeling to it.  I have to find what I want to shoot before I look through the veiwfinder.  I probably should be doing that anyway, but my 25mm spoils me in that regard.  Great lens and isolation is top notch.

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MAubrey
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

For me the 75mm is a lens that turns the phrase "horses for courses" on its head. Normally you have a particular purpose in mind and you choose a particular lens or set of lenses to use to satisfy that purpose. With the 75mm, it's so good that you find yourself just putting it on and then going out and looking for ways to use it.

It's just that special.

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Gregm61
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

It's an awesome lens. The images I have captured with it are really, really sharp and the 75mm FL with the F1.8 speed can create some really narrow depth of focus.

The issue I have with the lens is, the times I do carry it the number of times it gets used are few and far between. For me, it's too short to carry as the only tele option to the 12-40, so most of the time I'm using the 12-40 combined with either the 35-100 f2.8 Panasonic for the much better versatility, the 50-200mm f2.8-3.5 Zuiko for speed and reach or the 75-300mm M. Zuiko if I want reach and lighter weight to haul around compared to the 50-200.

If I were in a position of not being able to buy something else without first selling something I already had, the 75 would have probably been gone some time ago.

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kcinesser
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to MAubrey, 5 months ago

Hmm, that good huh? Like I said, I've been crazy impressed with images I've seen around the web, but that price just keeps staring at me from my computer screen. Unfortunately, where I live there isn't really an opportunity to test one out somewhere. Would you say it's worth the price?

Cheers.

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arbuz
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

kcinesser wrote:

I've seen the Sigma 60mm for a fraction of the price, but it doesn't seem to give a whole lot more reach than my 45mm, doesn't have the fast aperture, and optically I've heard it can't really touch the 75mm.

Where did you hear that? nstead of hearing thing I suggest to chek few tests and see the pictures.

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kcinesser
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to arbuz, 5 months ago

arbuz wrote:

kcinesser wrote:

I've seen the Sigma 60mm for a fraction of the price, but it doesn't seem to give a whole lot more reach than my 45mm, doesn't have the fast aperture, and optically I've heard it can't really touch the 75mm.

Where did you hear that? nstead of hearing thing I suggest to chek few tests and see the pictures.

Well, I meant "hearing" as in "reading" those tests. I've seen a few comparisons and it seems the general consensus is the Olympus is quite a bit better than the Sigma, but I don't know if its $600-ish better. Unfortunately, I don't really have any way to test either of these, so I can really only believe what I read, and then make a decision off that.

Have you used either/both? If so, which do you prefer?

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Skeeterbytes
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

kcinesser wrote:

Hmm, that good huh? Like I said, I've been crazy impressed with images I've seen around the web, but that price just keeps staring at me from my computer screen. Unfortunately, where I live there isn't really an opportunity to test one out somewhere. Would you say it's worth the price?

Cheers.

Since you don't have anything nearly as long, it's a double-benefit addition to your kit with greater reach and very shallow DOFs. Have had one for a short while and really enjoy shooting it, even as a walkaround lens. It's sharp and contrasty, corner to corner. Only fly in the ointment I've seen so far is purple fringing wide open, correctable but something to watch for. In sum, zero regrets on getting one (without trying it out beforehand).

Happened to get a reconditioned one, which do show up occasionally, otherwise you can always wait for the next rebate/discount. Nine-hundred is a significant hunk o' change.

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penghai
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

I'd suggest you to also consider Olympus 60mm macro. Though the 60mm is only f2.8, you are not limited by the minimum focus distance of 75mm and thus you still get lovely bokeh.

BTW, I also think 75mm is too limited a focal length. Unless you are really into this focal length, it will be of very limited usage.

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kcinesser
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

kcinesser wrote:

arbuz wrote:

kcinesser wrote:

I've seen the Sigma 60mm for a fraction of the price, but it doesn't seem to give a whole lot more reach than my 45mm, doesn't have the fast aperture, and optically I've heard it can't really touch the 75mm.

Where did you hear that? nstead of hearing thing I suggest to chek few tests and see the pictures.

Well, I meant "hearing" as in "reading" those tests. I've seen a few comparisons and it seems the general consensus is the Olympus is quite a bit better than the Sigma, but I don't know if its $600-ish better. Unfortunately, I don't really have any way to test either of these, so I can really only believe what I read, and then make a decision off that.

Have you used either/both? If so, which do you prefer?

And to clarify, I'm not saying I've heard BAD things about the 60mm. Quite the opposite. Just that the 75mm is THAT good.

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Miron09
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75mm is magic
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

https://plus.google.com/photos/110955796927925538104/albums/5838119997598599937/5838126001757980402?banner=pwa&pid=5838126001757980402&oid=110955796927925538104

if money is no object:

Panasonic 7-14, 2.5 14mm, 20mm, panaleica 25 mm (heavy), 42.5 Nocticron (heavy)

Olympus 17, 25, 45, 60, 75 (heavy)

The 20 & 14 mm always reside in the outside pocket of my camera bag (small size)

Out of the rest I pick 2 to 4 lenses, one or two of the heavy ones, depending on what I expect

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Miron09
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Oly 60mm is excellent
In reply to penghai, 5 months ago
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CrisPhoto
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Re: Oly 75mm or... TRY IT!
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

I know your situation ...

I had read alot and then tried the lens at my local shop. At this time I did not know what to make of it. Was not overly impressed there.

Buuuut: What helped me was one trick: I fixed my zoom lens to 75mm for a weekend and walked around to see if I find anything interesting with this focal length. And I was really surprised: I liked 75mm much more than expected. It is a very nice focal length because it covers exactly the field of view when I look at something interesting. Like some flowers. Or a face. Or, or or ...

When I finally bought the lens, I was impressed a second time:
not only does the FOV fit to me, the sharpness and the bokeh are really unique in mFT world. I sold my 45mm because the 75mm had 100% replaced it.

But you have to find your own opinion. Be warned, I love tele lenses but not everyone does. At least for me it is THE lens. While I do about 10% of my shots with it, at the end it is the lens for 30% of my keepers. And the lens for 50% of my very best shots. It is really hard to make a bad shot with it ...

How can you make your decision?

What about setting your 12-50 to 37mm and enabling the 2x tele converter???

Try what you can do with this FOV and then imagine how the pictures would look like if they would have been done with a nearly perfect lens ...

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arbuz
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

kcinesser wrote:

arbuz wrote:

kcinesser wrote:

I've seen the Sigma 60mm for a fraction of the price, but it doesn't seem to give a whole lot more reach than my 45mm, doesn't have the fast aperture, and optically I've heard it can't really touch the 75mm.

Where did you hear that? nstead of hearing thing I suggest to chek few tests and see the pictures.

Well, I meant "hearing" as in "reading" those tests. I've seen a few comparisons and it seems the general consensus is the Olympus is quite a bit better than the Sigma, but I don't know if its $600-ish better. Unfortunately, I don't really have any way to test either of these, so I can really only believe what I read, and then make a decision off that.

Have you used either/both? If so, which do you prefer?

I haven't. I omnly read test and seen pictures. I was not really interested in fixed lenght eq of 150mm (which for me would be very limiting) but wanted to understand what teh hype is about. One of the tests:

http://www.lenstip.com/351.4-Lens_review-Olympus_M.Zuiko_Digital_75_mm_f_1.8_ED_Image_resolution.html

http://www.lenstip.com/376.4-Lens_review-Sigma_A_60_mm_f_2.8_DN_Image_resolution.html

I've seen also various samples to check the bokeh. For me Olympus 75mm is not worth the price (is very expensive and is only f1.8 while rather big) but then I have not much use from fixed 75mm lens. Sigma is a good choice to see if you like fixed lenght tele. If I had the monay to spare for 75mm I would buy panasonic 35-100mm for it's quality and versality. But again, it's just me.

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CrisPhoto
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to arbuz, 5 months ago

arbuz wrote:

kcinesser wrote:

arbuz wrote:

kcinesser wrote:

I've seen the Sigma 60mm for a fraction of the price, but it doesn't seem to give a whole lot more reach than my 45mm, doesn't have the fast aperture, and optically I've heard it can't really touch the 75mm.

Where did you hear that? nstead of hearing thing I suggest to chek few tests and see the pictures.

Well, I meant "hearing" as in "reading" those tests. I've seen a few comparisons and it seems the general consensus is the Olympus is quite a bit better than the Sigma, but I don't know if its $600-ish better. Unfortunately, I don't really have any way to test either of these, so I can really only believe what I read, and then make a decision off that.

Have you used either/both? If so, which do you prefer?

I haven't. I omnly read test and seen pictures. I was not really interested in fixed lenght eq of 150mm (which for me would be very limiting) but wanted to understand what teh hype is about. One of the tests:

http://www.lenstip.com/351.4-Lens_review-Olympus_M.Zuiko_Digital_75_mm_f_1.8_ED_Image_resolution.html

http://www.lenstip.com/376.4-Lens_review-Sigma_A_60_mm_f_2.8_DN_Image_resolution.html

I've seen also various samples to check the bokeh. For me Olympus 75mm is not worth the price (is very expensive and is only f1.8 while rather big) but then I have not much use from fixed 75mm lens. Sigma is a good choice to see if you like fixed lenght tele. If I had the monay to spare for 75mm I would buy panasonic 35-100mm for it's quality and versality. But again, it's just me.

You never used the lens and never tried to get use of this focal length.

Your opinion surely is great help for the OP ...

(And saying the lens is to big for "only being f1.8" is funny. Do you realize, that 75mm/1.8 has to be quite big? Did you ever get your hands on this lens? You would have seen that it is 90% heavy glass with some metal around it. Can't imagine what Olympus could throw away to make it lighter, maybe some cheap plastics to save 20gr weight ...)

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Sho-Bud
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

Just another thought: have you considered the Olympus 60mm macro lens. Also very sharp and great for portraits, plus the added macro possibilities.

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kcinesser
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Re: Oly 75mm or... TRY IT!
In reply to CrisPhoto, 5 months ago

CrisPhoto wrote:

I know your situation ...

I had read alot and then tried the lens at my local shop. At this time I did not know what to make of it. Was not overly impressed there.

Buuuut: What helped me was one trick: I fixed my zoom lens to 75mm for a weekend and walked around to see if I find anything interesting with this focal length. And I was really surprised: I liked 75mm much more than expected. It is a very nice focal length because it covers exactly the field of view when I look at something interesting. Like some flowers. Or a face. Or, or or ...

When I finally bought the lens, I was impressed a second time:
not only does the FOV fit to me, the sharpness and the bokeh are really unique in mFT world. I sold my 45mm because the 75mm had 100% replaced it.

But you have to find your own opinion. Be warned, I love tele lenses but not everyone does. At least for me it is THE lens. While I do about 10% of my shots with it, at the end it is the lens for 30% of my keepers. And the lens for 50% of my very best shots. It is really hard to make a bad shot with it ...

How can you make your decision?

What about setting your 12-50 to 37mm and enabling the 2x tele converter???

Try what you can do with this FOV and then imagine how the pictures would look like if they would have been done with a nearly perfect lens ...

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P12-35, O75-300

That is a good tip! I'll have to give that a try later tonight.

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kcinesser
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to Sho-Bud, 5 months ago

Sho-Bud wrote:

Just another thought: have you considered the Olympus 60mm macro lens. Also very sharp and great for portraits, plus the added macro possibilities.

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I have thought of the Oly 60mm. However, since I have the 45mm, I just feel like the 60mm is too close in focal length, and might not be enough reach for what I'm needing.

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MFiftysomething
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

I just sold my Sigma 60mm, it is a nice lens and I can remember seing shots that compared very well to the 75mm (it might have been at 2.8 also) but I found it a bit long for portraits of my kids; I ended up running in a much larger circle around them than with the 45mm and now I have the Pan 35-100mm F2.8 with OIS as well it is just not needed.   I would love to try the 75mm though.

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brentbrent
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Re: Oly 75mm or...
In reply to kcinesser, 5 months ago

kcinesser wrote:

Like I said, I've been crazy impressed with images I've seen around the web, but that price just keeps staring at me from my computer screen. Would you say it's worth the price?

I admit that I had to swallow hard to shell out $850 for it.  Whether it's worth the price may depend on your own situation and what you value.  Is a $75 bottle of excellent wine worth the price? (Maybe for an anniversary dinner, but not every night!)

I can say that I'm very glad to have it, enjoy using it, and love the images I get from it.  For me it's worth the price.

I've used it for indoor performances that aren't well-lit, portraits, and increasingly other diverse subjects.  One example: we took our dogs to an expansive off-leash dog park and I had fun shooting with the 75 as the only lens I took.  Putting aside any comparisons of different focal lengths and their usefulness, it is the best lens I own.

But, ouch, that price!

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