Olympus 12-40 easily beats the Canon 17-55 at f/2.8 (but not when stopped down).

Started Nov 3, 2013 | Discussions thread
Beach Bum Senior Member • Posts: 1,055
DxO Analysis - the Panasonic 12-35 beats it also

Paul De Bra wrote:

My previous camera-lens combination was a Canon 450D with 17-55 lens. When I replaced the Canon by the E-M5 I kept longing for an equivalent lens. Now that I have the 12-40 I can state that technology has really moved on. Below are two pictures I took with the Canon 450D in 2008: one at f/2.8, one at f/8. They are followed by pictures I took today with the E-M5 and 12-40, one at f/2.8, one at f/4 (not stopped down more because wind would cause subject motion blur). Look at the originals: the Olympus 12-40 at f/2.8 blows the Canon 17-55 away. But stopped down there are no meaningful differences to be seen because the images are not under controlled circumstances and also taken 5 years apart and maybe processed differently.

Look at the DxO analysis (field map) of the 17-55 on the Canon 50D (a 15MP camera) compared to the Panasonic 12-35 on the GH2 (a 16MP camera). The 12-35 wins hands down in sharpness, even though it's on a smaller sensor.

I kept the Panasonic lens at its peak sharpness of f/4 and the Canon lens at its peak sharpness of f/5.6.

Of note, the Panasonic also handily beats the Canon when both are wide open at f/2.8, with the Panasonic on a 16MP MFT sensor, and the Canon on a comparable (or even slightly higher) APS-C sensor.

Canon Acutance 17mm f/5.6

Panasonic Acutance 12mm f/4

Canon Acutance 28mm f/5.6

Panasonic Acutance 18mm f/4

Canon Acutance 35mm f/5.6

Panasonic Acutance 25mm f/4

Canon Acutance 55mm f/5.6

Panasonic Acutance 35mm f/r

It's the same story of MFT vs the big boys we've seen repeatedly. The smaller lenses on smaller sensors can in fact out-resolve the monster lenses on larger sensors.

Nothing new here.

Size Comparison Canon 17-55 with Panasonic 12-35

Gee, this is a tough choice.

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