SHG/HG VS Zeiss ?

Started Mar 8, 2013 | Questions thread
erichK Veteran Member • Posts: 5,874
There are no magic lenses...

But there are some hugely overpriced ones.  As a German who had a late relative working for a top optics firm, I was quite surprised when, learning that I wanted to become a photographer, almsot four decades ago, he urgently advised me *not* to buy the Leica M4 and Summicron 50 f2 I was just trying out, and instead look at the new OM system and also Nikon's cameras.

When I told him that I wanted the best and weren't Leitz (and Zeiss) the best., his answer was "sometimes" and much the same that Chris Mak says here.  But also that I would need a camera system, and because each lens for the Leica would cost as much as a whole brace of lenses for the Olympus or even Nikon, even if he could get some at a discount.  Because some of these lenses, he confided, were, even by this top German optics firms testing,, very good indeed.

I only briefly made a living at photography, but have continued to pursue and enjoy it, mostly using Olympus (and occasionally Nikon).  When I tried a Sony 900 and some of the Zeiss lenses for it a couple of years ago, then looked at the five figure total that buying this camera and a cheaper second body plus Zeiss lenses to replace my 12-60 and 50-200 SWD zooms and 50f2 macro and 11-22mm zoom would cost, I very much remembered what my uncle had confided.  Instead, I spent about a third as much adding a used 150f2 and a "demo" 7-14 SHG and a Panalaica 25 f1.4 to my collection.

Lately, I have been gratified to discover that all three of these lenses also work quite well on my OM-D.

Certainly *some* of the Zeiss lenses are magnificent,  you have the money and time and interest - and strong back! - you might be to take some great pictures with them.  The post about the "professional" usage of such lenses is quite relevant here. However, for general shooting the very rational range of Olympus HG lenses, with their relatively light weight is pretty hard tp beat.  And most of the SHG range actually give the best of Leitz and Zeiss a pretty good run for the money in such special areas and bouquet and quality of construction.

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saskatoon, canada
Photography is a small voice, at best, but sometimes one photograph, or a group of them, can lure our sense of awareness.
- W. Eugene Smith, Dec 30, 1918 to Oct 15, 1978.
underwater photos:

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