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View Full Version : 50mm f1.8 OM lens for my E510 - worth buying for low light ?


alaneglinton
14th August 2009, 02:55 PM
Hi folks,

First post and a complete newbie to the slr world.
Been scratching around looikng for cheap lenses and I see the 50mm f1.8 (or 1.4 for a bit more ) come up a lot for 25 ish + OM adaptor for 10.

My questions is would it buy me anything in terms of low light, indoor shots versus my e510 kit lenses (14-42 mm 1:3.5-5.6, 40-150mm 1:4.0-5.6).

Feedback most welcome...

cheers, alan

mike_j
14th August 2009, 03:04 PM
Yes it's worth getting. It will need an adaptor, 10 or so from ebay, bit more if you buy the one with focus confim chip.

It is usful, not only for low light, but where you want a wide aperture to blur the background, isolating the subject. It makes a good pertrait lens.

Archphoto
14th August 2009, 03:13 PM
I have the 1.8/50mm from my OM 1 and use it on my Exxx on occasion.
Good lens, well worth putting it onto the Exxx.

Peter

Graham_of_Rainham
14th August 2009, 03:15 PM
Indoors the 50mm will be a bit long, equavalent to a 100mm. The 24mm f/2.8 is considered to be the best of all the om lenses on the 4/3rds body. I use my one quite frequently and really like the "Old School" feel of working with a fixed length manual lens. Results are very good and 48mm (equiv) is a good indoor working length.

*chr

alaneglinton
14th August 2009, 07:14 PM
Thanks for the great advice everyone, a couple of questions before I go and buy one....

Is the 28mm equivalent to the 50mm in terms of low light capability ?

I think I would be shooting roughly 3-6 feet from my subject (portrait / candid) so is the 28mm better ?

Both answers probably v. obvious to most but I'm just starting out, so bear with me !

Lastly, can you get focus confirmation from any of these lenses ?

Thanks again, alan

Xpres
14th August 2009, 07:59 PM
Unless you're after head shots the 28mm or 24mm would be better, but the 24mm f2.8 referred to is a slower lens so not quite so good for low light or shallow depth of field. You could get a 24mm f2 or 28mm f2 - both very expensive though.
A Vivitar or Soligor 28mm f2 would be a good alternative.


Oh.. focus confirmation will depend on your adapter - it needs a chip. But many prefer to be without the confirmation. :)

alaneglinton
14th August 2009, 08:16 PM
Unless you're after head shots the 28mm or 24mm would be better, but the 24mm f2.8 referred to is a slower lens so not quite so good for low light or shallow depth of field. You could get a 24mm f2 or 28mm f2 - both very expensive though.
A Vivitar or Soligor 28mm f2 would be a good alternative.


Oh.. focus confirmation will depend on your adapter - it needs a chip. But many prefer to be without the confirmation. :)

Thanks again for the replies...

OK, what kind of distances would I need to be away to get anything from head+shoulder to full body length shots from the 28 and 50mm ?
Is there a way to calculate it ?

Maybe I need both lenses !?

Lastly, given the 28mm is slower, will it be much better than my kit 14-45 lens in lower light?

cheers, alan

mike_j
14th August 2009, 08:30 PM
Since you have the 14-45mm kit lens you can get a good idea of the area covered by other lenses using the zoom on your kit lens.

The lenses on 4/2 have roughly twice the effective focal length of the same lens on a 35mm film camera so a 28mm on 4/3 (Oly and Panasonic) is roughly equivalent to 56mm on 35mm film.

alaneglinton
15th August 2009, 05:47 AM
Since you have the 14-45mm kit lens you can get a good idea of the area covered by other lenses using the zoom on your kit lens.

The lenses on 4/2 have roughly twice the effective focal length of the same lens on a 35mm film camera so a 28mm on 4/3 (Oly and Panasonic) is roughly equivalent to 56mm on 35mm film.

Thanks for clarifying the focal length, so if I understand it correctly....

What I see at 56mm on my E510 14-45 kit lens is equivalent to the OM 28mm and my 40-150mm lens set at 100mm will give the equivalent view of the 50mm OM ?

thanks, alan

mike_j
15th August 2009, 08:54 AM
No, what you see on your kit lens at (say) 28mm is what you would see using an OM 28mm on the same camera. Focal length is focal length, regardless of lens. It's just that any 28mm lens on your 4/3 camera has the same coverage a lens of twice that length on a 35mm camera. This is due to the smaller sensor cropping the image.

It's probably best if you look at this http://www.digital-slr-guide.com/crop-factor.html which explains it better than I can.

alaneglinton
15th August 2009, 09:26 AM
No, what you see on your kit lens at (say) 28mm is what you would see using an OM 28mm on the same camera. Focal length is focal length, regardless of lens. It's just that any 28mm lens on your 4/3 camera has the same coverage a lens of twice that length on a 35mm camera. This is due to the smaller sensor cropping the image.

It's probably best if you look at this http://www.digital-slr-guide.com/crop-factor.html which explains it better than I can.

Thanks for clarifying, told you I was new to all this !

Last dumb questions...
So does that mean I won't get what I see in the viewfinder in the final image and I'll get roughly half the area with an OM lens ?
If I used Live view that would be accurate in terms of final image size ?

Thanks, alan

Archphoto
15th August 2009, 11:09 AM
What you see in Live View is what you get.
The view finder in your camera covers about 92% of that.

So: the 50mm OM lens becomes a 100mm on the E.

Peter

David M
15th August 2009, 11:44 AM
I think this thread's become needlessly complicated for a newbie.

A 50mm lens will always be a 50mm lens. So an OM 50mm will have the same field of view and viewfinder magnification as your 40-150 kit lens set at 50mm.

Ditto for a 28mm, setting you 14-42 kit lens to 28mm will give you the same field of view and viewfinder magnification as a legacy 28mm.

alaneglinton
15th August 2009, 12:32 PM
I think this thread's become needlessly complicated for a newbie.

David, I agree ~!:confused:

Nearly there,,,,I just need to know if the final shot stored in my E510 will be basically be the same size as what I see through the viewfinder with either the E510 kit lens or new OM lens.

thanks for your patience, alan

David M
15th August 2009, 01:08 PM
David, I agree ~!:confused:

Nearly there,,,,I just need to know if the final shot stored in my E510 will be basically be the same size as what I see through the viewfinder with either the E510 kit lens or new OM lens.

thanks for your patience, alan

The stored image will be the same size (magnification) whether using your kit 40-150 at 50mm or an OM 50mm.

alaneglinton
16th August 2009, 07:30 AM
The stored image will be the same size (magnification) whether using your kit 40-150 at 50mm or an OM 50mm.

Thanks everyone, now clear.*chr
I obviously need to go and do some reading about SLR theory and how a 50mm lens is really a 100mm !!!
Messed around with my kit lens to suss out what I'll get and I will go for the 28mm first but I can see scope to use both.
cheers, alan

HughofBardfield
16th August 2009, 09:24 AM
Lots of examples and info here:

http://www.flickr.com/groups/om_four_thirds_adapter/
http://www.flickr.com/groups/olympus_e-system_information/discuss/72157605705375497/

Evaluations of different OM lenses on 4/3rds bodies here:
http://www.biofos.com/cornucop/omz_e1.html
http://www.biofos.com/cornucop/omz_e330.html

Review of one of the chipped AF-confirm adaptors here:

http://www.biofos.com/cornucop/af_adapter.html

The OM 50mm f1.8 has been rated as almost as sharp as the ZD 50mm - link for this seems to be down ATM

Bottom line: "legacy" (ie designed for 35mm film cameras) lenses are often cheap and can offer good quality but can be difficult to focus on cameras with smaller viewfinders (E4xx/E5xx). As well as chipped adaptors, replacement focusing screens with a split image centre are available as an aftermarket add-on for some E-system cameras (see http://www.katzeyeoptics.com/page--Custom-Focusing-Screens--store.html - cheaper Chinese clones, of variable quality, available on Fleabay)

Archphoto
16th August 2009, 02:10 PM
One remark (and explanation) on the chipped adapters: as there is no electrical connection between the legacy lens and the adapter/camera, the camera can not see the choosen aperture, so with the chip the camera will see a simulated f:2.8 and without the chip nothing, showing -.- for the aperture.

The chip tricks/tells the camera that a ZD lens is mounted, nothing more.

The acuracy of the focus indication is camera dependant, not of the chip.

Actualy, it should be posible for Olympus to build this feature into their camera's without any hardware modifications: it is just a matter of software.

Peter

alaneglinton
16th August 2009, 04:58 PM
One remark (and explanation) on the chipped adapters: as there is no electrical connection between the legacy lens and the adapter/camera, the camera can not see the choosen aperture, so with the chip the camera will see a simulated f:2.8 and without the chip nothing, showing -.- for the aperture.

The chip tricks/tells the camera that a ZD lens is mounted, nothing more.

The acuracy of the focus indication is camera dependant, not of the chip.

Actualy, it should be posible for Olympus to build this feature into their camera's without any hardware modifications: it is just a matter of software.

Peter

Hi Peter,

Thanks for the explanation, the AF confirm accuracy being dependent on camera, is there anywhere I can find out about how well the E510 specifically performs with a chipped OM adaptor ?

Looked at the links from Hugh (Thanks :)). Really good information.
They review the E3.

cheers, alan

Archphoto
16th August 2009, 05:22 PM
As long as the chips gives the propper information (ZD lens attached) the rest is up to the camera and you.

I will be back in Holland in September and will start testing one of those chips with my E410 and E520.

Peter

HughofBardfield
17th August 2009, 01:53 PM
As Peter says above, the chip only tells the camera there's a lens attached. The AF focus sensors in the camera do all the work, so all other things being equal, there should be no difference in performance from a chip compared with focus-confirm with a ZD lens in manual focus mode. As Peter says, it has been demonstrated that all that would be needed is a firmware tweak to make this work WITHOUT the expense of a chipped adaptor - but, hey! Why would Olympus want to give customers a feature they have CONSISTENTLY asked for since the E1? :mad: ( :/rantmode OFF: )

I recently bought the chipped adaptor recommended by John Foster in the link I quoted above and - to the limited extent I've had time to trial it - it seems to perform very well on my E510 with 300 and 500mm lenses. My use is for longer lenses, so the limiting factors are the photographer's mild DTs and optimistic use of slower shutter speeds :) Of course, you also need to set the focal length of the lens you're using for the IS (see the IS menu).

You can go thru a tedious rigmarole to "tell" the chip what FL, aperture and so on you're using so it records in the EXIF (this is what is mostly covered in the "instruction manual" that comes with the adaptor), but I can't see the point, myself.

One final point, with all legacy lenses, matrix (ESP) metering tends to be confused - presumably because of all that light spilling around from the 35mm-size image circle. Centre-weighted or spot metering tends to give more reliable results.

snaarman
17th August 2009, 03:07 PM
it has been demonstrated that all that would be needed is a firmware tweak to make this work WITHOUT the expense of a chipped adaptor - but, hey! Why would Olympus want to give customers a feature they have CONSISTENTLY asked for since the E1? :mad: ( :/rantmode OFF: )


Yes.. A worthy rant my friend.. Come on Olympus!!

Pete

alaneglinton
17th August 2009, 05:46 PM
Thanks Hugh + everyone else for my legacy lens crash course !
Ready to buy a 28mm, 50mm and chipped adaptor + see how I go

thanks, alan*chr

Jim Ford
17th August 2009, 06:12 PM
Don't forget that the Konica Hexanon lenses will fit Olympus cameras with very little modification. In particular, the 40mm f1.8 is highly regarded for its compactness and image quality.

Jim