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Standard zoom and mid range Lenses with focal lengths larger than 12mm, but no longer than 60mm, includes standard zooms and portrait primes plus some macro lenses.

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Old 15th September 2013
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Lightbulb Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Today, despite overcast weather and, at the end, spits of rain, I shot some back/back comparisons of the new 12-40 and the old favourite 12-60 SWD using an E-M1, fitting the 12-60 via an MMF-3 adapter.

The ISO was 200, and for the JPEGs the noise filter was switched off. A link to the RAW file is provided as well. Each lens was used at 12, 25 and 40mm and each focal length was used at full aperture, f/4.0, f/5.6 and f/8.0.

The JPEGs were imported into Lightroom 5.0 for inspection and selection but no image changes were made. These images were not taken under laboratory conditions - and the 12mm shots may have had some spots of rain in the lens surface. But the camera and lenses were tripod mounted and levelled as best as I could. The lenses were only focused once for each focal length on each lens photographed. A 2 second delay was used to allow the camera to settle before each exposure was made.

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These images are Copyright Ian Burley. They are provided for your personal evaluation only. If you are going to post these images or part of these images elsewhere on the Web I request that you post a link back to http://fourthirds-user.com and acknowledge my copyright. PLEASE DON'T POST LINKS TO THE FILES ON OUR SERVER! If you want to post the entire file, download it and serve it from your own web space (provided you include a link back to http://fourthirds-user.com) and acknowledge my copyright).

Micro Four Thirds M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro:

Four Thirds Zuiko Digital 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 w/ MMF-3 adapter:
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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

If anyone does not follow the linking and copyright instructions I will remove these files.

Ian
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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

So which is it Ian? Not that I plan on replacing my 12-60. It's only the second zoom lens I've kept in nearly 4 decades. The 7-14 was the first.
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

I haven't actually spent any time comparing them - just getting the shots taken, sorted and uploaded!

I have to do the shopping and cook the Sunday roast now so I will reserve my judgement for later!

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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Interesting. I had a quick compare of the 12mm f2.8 files and figured one of them was very very slightly sharper (by which time I forgot which was which).

Checking, it looks like the new one has the edge If so, well done Olympus.
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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

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Originally Posted by snaarman View Post
Interesting. I had a quick compare of the 12mm f2.8 files and figured one of them was very very slightly sharper (by which time I forgot which was which).

Checking, it looks like the new one has the edge If so, well done Olympus.
Even if the 12-40 is sharper, the attraction of my already paid for, and superb performing 12-60 is a compelling reason just to get the em1 body.
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

I'm not going to attempt viewing the files on this BlackBerry. But as my sample of the 12-60 is so good it doesn't really matter.
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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

That's fantastic, just the comparison i called for in another thread. Looks to me that at 12mm and 25mm the 12-40 has the edge over the 12-60. At 40mm it's not so clear cut with the 12-60 being sharper at the edges generally. At 25mm the 12-40 seems to outperform the 12-60 by some margin at the edges.

Two fantastic lenses for Oly m43 (in the guise of the EM-1).
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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Thanks Ian. The 12-40 generally looks slightly better. The 12-60 at f=25mm, @ f/3.4 looks pretty soft on the left edge, but fine on the right, and at the other two focal lengths.

Bruce
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Old 15th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian View Post
Today, despite overcast weather and, at the end, spits of rain, I shot some back/back comparisons of the new 12-40 and the old favourite 12-60 SWD using an E-M1, fitting the 12-60 via an MMF-3 adapter.
Great work, Ian !

The rain left some soft spots on either lens, so this part already seems to be confirmed

At a first glance examining the jpg only, there is a slight difference in exposure between the two, which makes the new 12-40 come out darker thus seemingly with a tad more contrast.

As for resolution, for now I didn't see anything that would make me consider to switch to the new 12-40 nor to say the 12-60 is way ahead.
Less distortion is a real benefit tough and of course the low min focus distance of that lens. Biggest con to me is the relatively small zoom range.

Interested what your findings will be.
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Old 16th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

OK, I have now spent some time looking at the images. Based on examination of the JPEG images, sadly, I have to put my hand up and admit two failings; the 12-60 40mm shots are very slightly mis-focused compared to the 12-40 shots and the 12-60 lens sample does look de-centred, with the top right looking sharper than the top left.

Therefore I have decided to re-shoot the entire exercise and will use a different 12-60 and hope it is a better sample. The weather today is much better and sunny although forecast to deteriorate this afternoon. I need to wait for the light to shine on the front of the building later this morning before I can start but I will publish new images this afternoon.

But given the above comments, at 25mm, comparing the best areas of the 12-60 to the 12-40 there is not much difference except of course the 12-40 is 2/3 or so stops brighter fully open and doesn't seem to lose much to the 12-60 at f/3.4. At 12mm wide open and this time both at f/2.8 I think the 12-40 has a very slight edge in sharpness but we'll have to see how a different 12-60 sample works out. Surprisingly, given that the E-M1 is supposed to correct Four Thirds lenses for distortion in the JPEGs there is still quite a bit of barrel distortion with the 12-60 compared to the 12-40. I should also add that the 12-40 was more consistent in focus accuracy (using CDAF) than the 12-60 (PDAF) although the conditions weren't ideal.

Finally, the previous comments elsewhere that have referred to reduced sharpness at f/5.6 - I can concur and can only think that is a diffraction issue as it appears to affect both lenses.

Ian
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Old 16th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Here is a new set of comparison images shot today using a different 12-60. This doesn't look very sharp on the extreme right of the frame in the 40mm shots, but I think it's more representative than the first lens I tried.

Unfortunately the clouds raced in so these shots are again taken in overcast conditions.

The ISO was 200, and for the JPEGs the noise filter was switched off. A link to the RAW file is provided as well. Each lens was used at 12, 25 and 40mm and each focal length was used at full aperture, f/4.0, f/5.6 and f/8.0.

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These images are Copyright Ian Burley. They are provided for your personal evaluation only. If you are going to post these images or part of these images elsewhere on the Web I request that you post a link back to http://fourthirds-user.com and acknowledge my copyright. PLEASE DON'T POST LINKS TO THE FILES ON OUR SERVER! If you want to post the entire file, download it and serve it from your own web space (provided you include a link back to http://fourthirds-user.com) and acknowledge my copyright).

Micro Four Thirds M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro:

Four Thirds Zuiko Digital 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 w/ MMF-3 adapter:
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Old 16th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

I decided to try opening the RAW file (P9150179.ORF) of the 12-40 lens at 12mm, f8 in a Win8 app Foto & it did showing just how much barrel distortion there was before the correction had been applied to it (in the jpeg) which includes a fair amount of crop too, (which is how it opens in Olympus Viewer 3 (version 1.1)). Of course it shows it rather flat too without settings applied.
I just though it would be interesting to mention it.

BTW, OV3 also shows the Color Creator in the Picture Mode selection too as well as the Highlight & Shadow Control (which can't be used on E-M5 RAW files).

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Old 16th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ross the fiddler View Post
I decided to try opening the RAW file (P9150179.ORF) of the 12-40 lens at 12mm, f8 in a Win8 app Foto & it did showing just how much barrel distortion there was before the correction had been applied to it (in the jpeg) which includes a fair amount of crop too, (which is how it opens in Olympus Viewer 3 (version 1.1)). Of course it shows it rather flat too without settings applied.
I just though it would be interesting to mention it.

BTW, OV3 also shows the Color Creator in the Picture Mode selection too as well as the Highlight & Shadow Control (which can't be used on E-M5 RAW files).

Thanks for that - there are some comments on the same topic on FTU now.

I have shot some comparisons between the Panny 12-35 and 12-40 as well as the 12-60 in better light and will sort them out and upload tomorrow.

Ian
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Old 16th September 2013
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Re: Comparing the new 12-40 Pro with the 12-60 SWD on an E-M1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian View Post
I haven't actually spent any time comparing them - just getting the shots taken, sorted and uploaded!

I have to do the shopping and cook the Sunday roast now so I will reserve my judgement for later!

Ian
Gosh Ian...Sunday Roast??? Haven't had one of those for a long time...can I come over for din din??

I looked at a couple of your posts and can't see any diff........they are sharp!! Than's all that matters!!
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