Oly 12mm f2.0 vs Pana 12-32mm f3.5-5.6

Started Mar 19, 2017 | Questions thread
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LarsPolarBear Regular Member • Posts: 384
Oly 12mm f2.0 vs Pana 12-32mm f3.5-5.6

Dear Forum Members,

I am currently considering to get an additional lens to upgrade from my Oly 14-42EZ lens.  While I purposely got my E-PL7 with this lens due to its small size, I am not totally happy with its image sharpness and its slow "speed" of f3.5-5.6.

I am using it mostly for traveling and hiking, as well as for underwater photography with the Oly PT-EP 12 underwater casing for wide(er) angle, zooming in on more dagerous animals and in combination with a diopter also for macro.  Especially underwater I would love to have a faster lens due to the low ambient light available (I only use the build-in flash and no additional strobe).  Furthermore, for landscape and big fish (sharks, barracudas etc.) a wider angle would be appreciated.  The biggest limitation I have is the underwater casing, which works only with a very limited variety of lenses, which includes the 14-42EZ (but not the 14-42RII, which I also own, but consider to big as my walk around lens), the 12mm f2 and a limited number of other primes (17mm, 25mm...) which are of no interest to me.

So, I was considering the 12mm f2.0, but am not totally happy with that idea, since it would not give me the flexibility of the zoom and would also (according to the Oly system chart) not work with the macro diopter for the underwater housing.   My alternative idea was to see if the Pana 12-32mm f3.5-5.6 would fit into the housing and try to get a zoom gear made for it. It would not solve the slowness of the lens, but should at least improve image quality.


1. Could those of you who own the Oly 12mm and the Pana 12-32mm please comment on their image quality (also in comparison). Is there a significant difference, especially when fully open (f2.0 or f3.5).

2. Could someone please measure for me how much the 12-32 mm extends at its longest point  as measured from the camera (Pana Website only supplies data as fully collapsed). Thanks!

3. Is anybody using the 12-32mm with the PT-EP 12 housing and has a solution for the zoom gear?

4. Any other suggestions to solve my dilemma (please do not suggest to get a different camera with different housing or a new port for the housing, as they are not cost effective). Thanks!

Thanks for your help!!!


 LarsPolarBear's gear list:LarsPolarBear's gear list
Canon PowerShot G1 X Olympus E-PL7 Olympus M.Zuiko ED 75-300mm 1:4.8-6.7 II Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 EZ +1 more
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Olympus E-PL7
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