Oly 17mm 1.8, Oly 25mm 1.8 or the sigma 19mm?

Started Apr 19, 2014 | Questions thread
Marty4650 Forum Pro • Posts: 15,334
From personal experience

There are probably not very many people who own every lens you mentioned, but I do own both the Olympus 17mm f/1.8 and the Olympus 25mm f/1.8 lenses. So I can only tell you what I know from my personal experience.

  • The Olympus 17mm f/1.8 is an outstanding lens. It is small, light, and fast, and perfect for street shooting. This is roughly the same equivalent focal length of the Fuj X100s and the Sony RX1, both of which are great street shooters. I traded in my 17mm f/2.8 pancake lens towards this lens because it is so much better (and to be honest, the 17mm f/2.8 isn't a bad lens at all; the f/1.8 lens is simply better.)
  • The Olympus 25mm f/1.8 is one of the very best lenses for M4/3. This is fast becoming my favorite lens. A rareity, it even came with a lens hood! (And probably only because the Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 comes with one.) This is a great all purpose lens and a good performer in low light.

And now for things I have no personal knowledge of, but heard about from others:

  • The Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 lens is also one of the very best lenses available for M4/3. It is slightly faster than the Olympus 25mm lens, but is also larger, heavier, and more expensive. I have never heard of anyone who owns this lens say they regret buying it.
  • The Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 is a very nice lens too. But there are some reported problems when used on an Olympus camera (slower AF speed, banding at high ISO, and CA that isn't corrected by most Olympus cameras.)
  • The Sigma 19mm f/2.8 lens is said to be the sharpest of all these lenses. And it is very well built, has fast AF speed, and is relatively inexpensive, making it a bargain. But it is larger and slower. 

These are all good lenses, so you really can't go wrong. With prime lenses, the choice often comes down to focal length, but even that isn't so critical. The focal length difference between a 17mm, 19mm,  20mm and 25mm lens just means you might have to move a few steps forward or backwards to frame a photo.

Since you already own a 45mm f/1.8 lens then either the 17mm f/1.8 or 25mm f/1.8 would compliment it nicely. I own all three of those lenses plus the 14mm Panasonic f/2.5 lens, so you can tell I like using prime lenses. I'm even tempted to sell one of my kidneys so I can get the 12mm f/2.0 and the 75mm f/1.8 lens!

my blog: http://marty4650.blogspot.com/

 Marty4650's gear list:Marty4650's gear list
Panasonic LX100 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX85 Olympus Zuiko Digital 11-22mm 1:2.8-3.5 +14 more
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