Are m4/3 cameras too expensive when you…

Started Apr 30, 2013 | Discussions thread
Anders W Forum Pro • Posts: 21,468
Re: Any system is expensive

marike6 wrote:

Anders W wrote:

marike6 wrote:

Art_P wrote:

if you go on a buying frenzy.

Basic needs are usually covered by the kit lens... or maybe the two kit lenses.

Most of the better lenses in m43 are the faster f1.7 or f1.8 primes.

But yes you can cover from 28-400 with two zoom lenses as long as you are not expecting the ultimate IQ or DOF control that m43 can provide.

Photography is an expensive hobby.  I do think that m43 gear has gone a bit crazy with pricing in recent times compared to what's available with APS-C DSLRs considering that a Nikon 35 1.8 is $196 and a 50 1.8G $225.

While the 20/1.7 and 45/1.8 cost about a hundred bucks more than the two Nikons, they are also better lenses optically speaking.

How do you figure that two software corrected lenses are better optically than two Nikkors?  The Nikon 50 1.8G is a FF lens designed to cover a much larger sensor.  A 50 1.8G on any Nikon FF or APS-C body for that matter with resolve more than a 45 1.8 on any m43 body.  This is a fact.

I am afraid you are poorly informed as usual. Here are the Lenstip test results (center/edge in lp/mm), with the results for the Nikkor multiplied by 1.28 (the square root of the ratio of the APS-C sensor area to the MFT sensor area) to make up for the sensor size difference between APS-C and MFT.

Nikkor 35/1.8 on D200

1.8 45/31

2.0 47/35

2.8 55/44

4.0 58/45

5.6 56/45

Panasonic 20/1.7 on E-PL1

1.7 61/44

2.0 69/47

2.8 73/53

4.0 74/59

5.6 72/58

Nikkor 50/1.8G on APS-C-size crop from D3X

1.8 35/31

2.0 36/31

2.8 49/36

4.0 58/43

5.6 58/52

Olympus 45/1.8 on E-PL1

1.8 67/46

2.0 70/50

2.8 76/62

4.0 73/64

5.6 70/60

In addition, it is worth mentioning here that the bokeh of the 45/1.8 is of course vastly better than that of the 50/1.8G. The first is designed as a portrait tele with special consideration given to bokeh. The 50/1.8G, by contrast, is designed for use as an FF normal lens.

The 20 1.7 and 45 1.8 (like ALL m43 lenses) use software correction for distortion, CA, vignetting, etc.  Nikon optical engineers have corrected ALL aberrations with OPTICS, not software.

Again, you are wrong about the facts. Correction for vignetting is optional with MFT, just as for Nikon. As to CA, this is auto-corrected only for Panasonic lenses (when used on a Panasonic body). Distortion is auto-corrected by both Olympus and Panasonic. However, with the 45/1.8, no correction is applied since the lens does not need it.

Further, recent Nikon models offer optional correction of these aberrations via firmware as well as via Nikon's RAW converter. Why would these options have been added if the lenses didn't need such correction?

Last but not last: It's the end results that count, not the means by which they are achieved. Why would anyone care whether the correction is done optically or via software if the end results are good, which they obviously are.

Aside from that, focus-by-wire is simply not pleasant to use if manual focus is important to you.

It rarely is important to me. But when it is, the focus-by-wire works OK and a magnified EVF image is preferable to an OVF if you want to see what you are doing.

For AF, the two Nikkors have AF-S motors that are silent and fast, unlike the Panasonic which is very slow.

Apparently you have overlooked this test of the AF speed of the Panasonic 20/1.7 showing that under normal conditions, its AF is no slower than that of other lenses:

Besides that f1.8 on m43 in not all that interesting in terms of DOF control.

The 45/1.8 and 75/1.8 both provide sufficient DoF control for my needs. I wouldn't normally shoot my FF 85/1.8 at a larger aperture than about f/4 due to too shallow DoF. At 20 mm (40 mm EFL), I am not really interested in shallow DoF compositions.

I like the 45 1.8, but let's be real.  $400 for a 90 f3.6 equivalent lens or in the case of the 75 1.8, $1000 for a 150 f3.6 lens is expensive no matter how you look at it.

If you bought into MFT on the premise that the lenses would cost as much as two stops slower FF lenses, you have been misled. It is just as difficult to design/produce an x mm f/n lens for MFT as it is to design/produce a 2x mm f/n lens for FF. Price is set accordingly.

So now you have your low-light needs covered.  And you can buy an Nikon DX 18-105 ($200) or a refurbished 18-200 ($500) or one of the Sigma or Tamron equivalents, with one of the 35 1.8 or 50 1.8 primes and you'll have 27-300 3.5-5.6 covered with low-light.

Sure you can have your low-light as well as standard zoom needs covered by for both MFT and APS-C. I never questioned that.

What you are paying for in m43 is small size. But m43 vendors don't seem to factor in the fact that it cost less to manufacture lens meant to cover a m43 sensor vs a FF lens.  There is no way in the world that the Panasonic 35-100 2.8 should cost $1500, close to the price of many FF 70-200 2.8 lenses.  And the 75 1.8, and great, but overpriced specialty lens.

I don't consider the 75/1.8 overpriced for what it delivers. The 12/2, on the other hand, could do with a price cut.

See my last paragraph above.

As far as I can see, that paragraph says nothing of relevance with regard to the price of the 75/1.8 or the 12/2.

There is no doubt that you can spend thousands on a decent lens collection in m43, and you still will not have a single long telephoto lens with faster than f5.6 max aperture.

That is unless you want to purchase the 35-100 2.8,

If you consider 100 mm on MFT long tele, there is the 75/1.8 which is so good that it can be cropped to the same FoV as the 35-100 at the long end and still go about equal for resolution. As you might be aware, there is also a 150/2.8 on its way from Panasonic.

a $1,500 lens that doesn't take teleconverters like a Nikon 70-200 2.8 VR or 70-200 f4 VR, and is not as good optically.

I am not particularly interested in TCs due to the significant performance as well as light loss they entail. And on the APS-C system that you use as the point of comparison throughout your post, the 70-200/2.8 VR cannot compete for MTF values with the Panasonic 35-100/2.8.

These lenses are designed for a much smaller sensor, but vendors are don't seem to be taking this fact into account in pricing.  APS-C lenses are less expensive than FF lenses.

Only sometimes. As you have already shown, the 35/1.8G costs about as much as 50/1.8G. Both are normal lenses on the sensor for which they were designed.

So too should m43 lenses.  Sadly they are not.

See my general comment about pricing further up, about mid-way through the post.

 Anders W's gear list:Anders W's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH +28 more
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