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Old 26th June 2014
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Re: Seeking Advice on Lenses

For wide-angle there are 2 choices: Zuiko 9-18mm f/4-5.6 and Lumix 7-14m f/4.
The Zuiko is smaller, lightweight and cheaper.
The Lumix is a bit more exotic, faster and with even more dramatic perspective but more prone to flare due to its curved front element.

Both provide very good image quality with the Lumix having the edge in my opinion.

There are more options for a standard lens (40-60mm).
Lumix 20mm f/1.7 provides excellent image quality in pancake dimensions but I find it to be pretty slow in AF performance (even the newer version), especially for its price.
Zuiko 25mm f/1.8 is a wonderful lens in all aspects, providing very good IQ in compact size and with stylish design. Maybe a bit expensive though.
Sigma 30mm f/2.8 is quite a surprise in both IQ and price but it focal length isn't the optimal.
Leica 25mm f/1.4 is the most expensive option but hey, it is f/1.4 and it says Leica on it!

Telephoto options are also respectable.
The cheapest option is the Zuiko 40-150mm f/4-5.6 but is not a bad lens. Compact, lightweight, with fast AF and adequate IQ it's very convenient lens to carry around.
Lumix 45-200mm f/4-5.6 provides longer focal lenght but is substantially heavier (though better built) and if you get a good copy, then you have a gem.
Lumix 100-300mm f/4-5.6 is a personal favorite of mine, super-telephoto and great even wide open across the zoom range.
Lumix 35-100mm f/2.8 is a professional grade lens with great optics, bright and fast. Great lens.
Zuiko 75-300 f/4.8-6.7 II is a lens i haven't tested but it is slower than the Lumix 100-300 and probably not as good.
I have no experience from the Lumix 45-175mm but from what I read, it's not something special.

As for macro, both Leica 45mm f/2.8 and Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 can provide excellent IQ but I would prefer the Zuiko for its longer focal length and more consistent performance.

What you choose heavily depends on your budget and, of course, your specific needs.
After breaking through the technology barrier,
you run into the barrier of accepted wisdom.
-Yoshihisa Maitani
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