Olympus 17 mm f 1.2 Pro, 45 mm f 1.2 Pro, Voigtlander 17.5 mm f 0.95

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Sbarnaveli Junior Member • Posts: 25
Olympus 17 mm f 1.2 Pro, 45 mm f 1.2 Pro, Voigtlander 17.5 mm f 0.95


This is my first ever post on a forum of any kind (and starting with a very long one ) . I guess I became too desperate been going back and forth for over a week now.

I have been shooting with an EM10 (original) and with the recent promotion of EM1 Mk II where it comes with a "free" 1.2 lens if you buy it new, I bought the camera but now I'm torn between the lenses and don't know which one to choose. Here are some useful facts that should help me explain my question better.

  1. First of all, I'm definitely happy with m4/3 as I'm doing quite some hiking high in the mountains (and some mountaineering as well) as well as traveling with my camera to different cities and countries (when there's no corona), therefore portability is very important for me as well as having around 3 lenses with me. And the quality that I can get even from EM10 is enough for me (went for EM1 mainly for ergonomics and weather sealing as EM10 died on me once and resurrection of it's dead motherboard was a miracle by a friend electrical engineer using chemicals). Also, I think I can easily work around the limitations of the sensor just as people have been able to produce amazing landscapes using canon 5D Mk III (or even older) and EM1 Mk II is in some areas even better than it as well.
  2. Lately I'm mainly shooting portraits (www.flickr.com/sndro ) and working on developing my compositional techniques, as I realized that that is way more important than chasing crazy shallow depth of field all the time (sometimes I also like having it, though).
  3. The latest portraits have been taken with 7-14mm Pro (there are more in the editing works, so not online yet) and 20mm 1.7 Lumix.
  4. Besides, lately I've been watching a lot of beautiful movies and started noticing more and more environmental portraits in shots and really like them and would like to work on environmental portraits more. Here are some screenshots of the scenes that I liked from Emma (2020):

  5. However, my main issue is Bokeh. I really like the the bokeh in the above scenes - First of all, it is blurry enough to separate the subject from the background, but not overly blurry - all the details in the background are still visible. At the same time, the foreground is very crisp and colors very nice. I really would like to be able to replicate these traits in my photos in the future.
  6. Even on the widest of them, there is a slight blur in the candles and there's still a clearly visible separation of the subject and the background.
  7. In the meantime, sometimes I also like to have the blurriest possible lens to get shots like this:

  8. The lenses that I currently own are: Zooms: 7-14 Pro, 12-40 Pro, 40-150 4-5.6. Primes: Samyang 12mm 2.0, Lumix 20mm 1.7, Lumix 25 1.7, Olympus 45 1.8 and Olympus 75 1.8.

So now finally to the question: currently I am thinking of going for Olympus 17 f1.2 (reminder: it will be free). As I am aware, that the T stops for 1.2 primes for mft are around 1.8, so not much of a lowlight capability gain. But I mainly care about the bokeh - I need the bokeh that I described above for the separation purposes (and sharpness is also welcome). But I am worried, that

  • The bokeh might not be of a good quality as according to the Lenstip review, there are some onion rings.
  • And due to the wide angle of view, I'm not sure if I will see that "feathered bokeh" that is being marketed strongly.

Alternatively, I really like 45 and initially was actually not even considering other lenses, when I saw the promotion. + everyone seems to love the 45 1.2 lens and it will be easy to see the feathered bokeh with it and if there's enough distance to the subject, I guess I can get the same look as in the screenshots above even with 90mm equivalent fov and definitely enough bokeh. Besides, I can also use it for portraits with blur as the one above (shot on 75mm @ 1.8). And I will probably still lust for it if I don't get it now... Not sure if I will buy it then, though. However the "problems" with 45 are:

  • I'm just not so sure that I will be able to get the same amount of environment (e.g. a second person) into the frame like in the pictures above and sometimes it is hard to find that additional space.
  • I already have 45 1.8 and 75 1.8, so not sure how sensible it is to add 45 1.2. It is clearly better in bokeh and sharpness than 45 1.8 and more convenient indoor fov than 75, but still, seems like 17 would actually be able to bring something new to my lens collection in terms of capabilities not possible before. Basically heart tells me to go for 45 but brain votes for 17. (although 45 can also bring something new and useful)

And finally I am also thinking maybe it is safer to go for a 45mm pro and just add a Voigtlander 17mm 0.95 to the set later? I like focusing manually and all my pictures are slow paced and I usually have time to focus manually. And Voigtlander will definitely give me enough bokeh. The problems though:

  • Not sure about enough sharpness and contrast for the foreground at 0.95
  • Ideally would be happy to just have 1 new lens and not spend additional 600-900EUR on another MFT lens.
  • I want a calm bokeh, so not sure if there will be any swirls or stuff like that with Voigtlander.

So... these are my thoughts and not sure which one to get. Leaning towards 17 Pro, but not sure because of the bokeh amount and quality.

Any sample pictures (especially if they prove a point) would be very welcome!!

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