Why is the 42.5 F/1.2 $1600 when the Fuji 56mm F/1.2 is only $1000?

Started Mar 2, 2014 | Discussions thread
Ken Strain Regular Member • Posts: 449
Re: Why is the 42.5 F/1.2 $1600 when the Fuji 56mm F/1.2 is only $1000?

BeaverTerror wrote:

Ken Strain wrote:

I like to use a smaller, lighter camera for mountain photography (E-PM2, most often, though it takes a bit of thought regarding its limited controls).

For this kind of use an EVF is mandatory.

Sure, I was thinking that an EVF would be needed.

That limits the choices to the OMD's and the various Panasonic SLR shaped bodies, plus the GX7.

Fair enough, although the VF4 won't fall off my E-PM2 and it is a little nicer than the one in my GX7, a built in EVF has some obvious advantages too.

In this class the weight differences are not significant enough to come into play. The image below was taken last October with the Panasonic G3 and the Olympus 9-18. The low contrast on the left side is due to my breath condensing on the lens. It was a bit cold up there. I tried to bring the contrast back up in Lightroom as much as I could, and this was the best I could do. With zoom lenses, there is the issue of moist air being drawn in as the internal volumn changes. This is unavoidable even with weather sealed lenses. The best you can do is to not operate the zoom inside the tent, and once you're off the mountain, operate the zoom repeatedly to drive out any internal condensation. I expect my lens will mold up over time. Nothing to do about it. If you zoom in on the sky, you can see that the earlier M43 cameras are quite noisy even at base ISO in daylight. This was at above 5000m, and it was BRIGHT. You can also clearly see noise in the cloud shadow inside the valley. In reality though, nobody is going to look at this photo and say "that sky is noisy". Any of the mirrorless cameras on the market today can take this photograph and you'd be hardpressed to tell the difference.

Someone pointed out earlier the total cost of switching systems, "gear acquisition syndrome", etc. I've been using my G3 since 2011 and thoroughly trashed it. It looks like it went through a washing machine, though it still works flawlessly. I'm due for a camera upgrade not because of image quality, but because the technology that has appeared in the past three years will make a tangible impact to my photography. I'm in a lot of situations where an electronic level gauge would be really handy. Olympus' live bulb feature makes night photography much easier.

Yes, it is a neat feature.

I often wish I had focus peaking to help me with manual focus. I would really enjoy the EM-1's 1/320s flash sync speed and 1/8000s shutter. I could do with a weather and freeze proof body so I didn't have to keep my camera inside my jacket, where it suffers from severe condensation.

I can see that 1/8000s is going to be helpful.

While I've had batteries lose capacity in the cold, I'm often surprised how little trouble there is with the cameras themselves. I've not been in really cold places.

At the end of the day, photography is a hobby just like mountaineering. We make purchase decisions based on perceived value. Can I afford $1600 for a lens? Sure.

It seems likely that the price will drop, unless production is restricted.

Alternatively, I could take my money and fly to Vietnam (I'm in Shanghai) for a week of sea side rock climbing. There are three kinds of camera buyers: the kind who buys a kit and never purchases a second lens; the kind who frequents DPreview Forums and has enough money to play with every new toy from every manufacturer; and the kind who is committed to one system, buys a body every several generations, and spends most of their budget on lenses. Given the good things I said about the new M43 cameras in the previous paragraph and my collection of M43 lenses, Panasonic has really screwed it up when they set a price so absurd that someone like me, who I assume represents their most consistent customer base, looks at the label and says, "maybe I should switch to Fuji because that's the rational thing to do".

Whichever you choose,  it seems to me that the only strange choice would be to take two different camera systems. I'd almost certainly make minor mistakes if I tried that.


Maybe Olympus can annouce the same lens without IS and price it at $1000. Then I can buy that and get on with taking photos.

Panasonic G3; Olypmus 8-18 @ 9mm; F/7.1; ISO 160; 1/500 Sec; Polarizer

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