Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

Started Jun 18, 2014 | Discussions
MysteryLemon Regular Member • Posts: 344
Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

I'm after a new prime lens for my E-500.  Size is no concern but ideally I'm looking for something around f1.8, around 25mm and under £150 used.

I've seen the Olympus 25mm F2.8 pancake lens which I seem to be able to get for around £100-£130.  It's defo in my considerations but I would prefer something faster and I have no concern over it's size.  I would prefer a faster, larger 25mm prime.  The E-500 isn't really going to get any smaller with a small lens on it haha.

I've seen Sigma do a 24mm f1.8 prime for 4/3 but these seem very hard to come by and when they do come up for sale, tend to go out of my budget.

Are there any lenses I'm missing.  It's hard searching ebay and the like for 4/3 kit these days as people don't seem to know how to list them and any 4/3 kit often gets muddled in with m4/3 kit.

Any suggestions welcome!

Olympus E-5
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frisbe54 New Member • Posts: 20
Re: Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

Sigma EX DC HSM Aspherical 30mm F/1.4 HSM EX AF DC Lens For Olympus/Four Thirds.

I got this lens for my E-520 years ago and have used it on E-30, E-5 and now on E-M1.  There is a significant improvement in AF performance using this lens on E-5 and E-M1 in low light conditions over my other two cameras.  Only drawback is not weather sealed but I use it mostly indoors.

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goblin
goblin Veteran Member • Posts: 3,323
Re: Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

The 24mm f:1.8 is your one and only. It has a little bit of color aberrations wide open, but is sharp once you stop down. Plus it has macro capabilities.

The 30mm 1.4 has a faster AF, is as good optically (except wide open where it fares worse both in sharpness and CA, but then again we're comparing f:1.4 to f:1.8), but most of all - it's a little bit of a lottery to buy it for a camera body with no micro AF adjustment option (E-30/E-600/E-620/E-5), as it tends to serve some bad surprises sometimes.

Don't get spooked by asking the prices of the 24mm 1.8 on Fleabay - those tend to be overinflated lately as most are listed from Japanese sellers who list them at crazy prices hoping theirs are the only ones left. Keep an eye out for "real" sellers, looking to sell, with no buy it now and no reserve prices. In these cases, the 24mm 1.8 would rarely go for more than $250.

I know of at least one currently for sale now. Many sellers would refuse international shipping lately, but it doesn't hurt to still ask. Good luck.

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historianx
historianx Senior Member • Posts: 2,840
Re: Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

So would a gently used Panaleica 25mm F1.4 for 4/3 snap your budget?  Ive seen them for less than $400 US on eBay, when they are there.  I have one and it's a fine lens, albeit a little big and hefty.

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GBC Senior Member • Posts: 1,251
Re: Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

Agreed. Best bet for sure.

sirharold
sirharold Contributing Member • Posts: 520
Re: Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

If you don't mind going old school purchase the MF-1 4/3 to OM Olympus adapter and buy yourself some great OM optics. You have the 50mm f1.8 on the cheap under $30.00 US. The 50mm f1.4 for around $75.00 US. You can also grab up the 50mm macro optics. The knock off adapters are a waste of money.

The main thing is to have a good time but how to save cash...

Happy Shooting..

Chris

KEH on ebay has the MF-1 for $42.00

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rovingtim Veteran Member • Posts: 8,640
Myth that has recently been busted.

sirharold wrote:

If you don't mind going old school purchase the MF-1 4/3 to OM Olympus adapter and buy yourself some great OM optics.

If the lens is not made for the camera's sensor stack, then you won't get sharp results.

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/53818577

sirharold
sirharold Contributing Member • Posts: 520
Re: Myth that has recently been busted.

This is one of the many macro shots I have taken with the MF-1 OM Adapter. If I remember correctly I used my 50mm f1.8 the MF-1 and my E-3. I guess this shot is not sharp enough for some. The E-3 was hand held no tripod or monopod.

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Jon Schick Veteran Member • Posts: 4,099
Re: Fast, affordable, standard prime for 4/3

I think finding a fast and affordable lens around the 25-30mm mark is going to be quite difficult and can't think of any suggestions beyond those already made.  If you find a good Sigma 30, then they can be really great lenses - I've used it in PK mount.

I also love using legacy lenses but they're not going to help much; if you were looking for 50mm it would be a very different kettle of fish, but legacy 28mm lenses don't often tend to be much to write home about.  Tamron did make quite a nice 24/2.5 Adaptall lens, but I wouldn't buy it in preference to the newer Olympus pancake.

I also wonder whether you may be better getting a good 14-54 2.8/3.5 unless you already have one.  Yes I know it's not a prime, and it's not as fast as you'd hope, but it is a great lens, easy to find secondhand, and at standard focal lengths is probably very close in performance to a good prime in any case.

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rovingtim Veteran Member • Posts: 8,640
compromise

sirharold wrote:

Well, my opinion has always been that sharpness is far over-rated. My strenuous objections to accepting artifacts in order to get apparent sharpness (it is not even real sharpness) is one of the reasons I got branded as a 'troll' on this forum.

See files from the E5 and anything after. Your E3 file is blissfully free of alias artifacts.

Personally, I think other photographic factors far outweigh sharpness.

However, having said that, I can see the effect in your photo. It is most apparent on the edges which is where it is observed to be in the tests.

So, if sharpness is your thing, then don't use lenses not designed for your sensor stack.

However, if other things (such as colour, bokeh, contrast) are more important to you, then perhaps adaptors are the way to go.

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