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Lens focus The place to talk about your camera's glassware.

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Old 11th April 2012
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Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

I'm still fairly new to MFT, I have an E-P1 and a Canon 50D APS-C.
My PEN E-P1 is very very nearly as good as my 50D considering output but the 50D scores on focussing.
I'm investing more in MFT with a OM-D on pre-order. I will likely sell the 50D and 24-105 and 70-200 lenses if I'm happy with the OM-D.

My question is this - is there any benefit in investing in Four Thirds lenses and using an adaptor over MFT lenses?
or are the MFT lenses as good?
I have an Olympus 14-42 and 40-150 and a Lumix 20 f1.7 at present...will soon have an Olympus 12-50 too - ordered with the OM-D.
I also have a 50mm 1.8 OM lens (and adaptor just ordered from ebay).

Sorry for such a long winded question....I'd really appreciate your wisdom on this ...I'll soon be hankering after a 12 f2, 9-18 and 75-100....so I need to choose the right direction.
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Old 11th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

Well Olympus 4/3'rds lenses are well known for their quality - and that applies for all the HG and SHG lenses, and for most of th SG lenses. The m4/3'rds lenses are regarded as good - but Olympus has only just started to populate the HG end of the range.

But it's not that simple, 4/3'rds lenses will give the same high performance on a PEN or OM-D as they do on a native body. But there are restrictions on focus speed, they focus a bit slower than they would on a 4/3'rds camera and are restricted to S-AF or MF.

I'd suggest it depends what you are shooting - landscapes/portrait etc then choose the best out of the combined range for the job/pocket. Sport/nature/action then the m4/3'rds will probably suit you better (particularly at longer lengths) as they are optimised for the focus method of the cameras.

Nick
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Old 12th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

Well summed up by Nick.
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Old 12th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

One thing to bear in mind, depending on just why you chose m4/3. The m4/3 was designed, partly, to reduce weight and bulk of camera systems. Whilst undoubtedly the HG and SHG 4/3 lenses are amongst the best in the world, they are neither small nor light. Which, for me at least, negates the reason for going m4/3 in the first place.

There aren't many m4/3 lenses which are bad. And the number of excellent ones is increasing all the time. My advice is to largely ignore the pixel-peepers and go with what feels right for you.
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Old 12th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Temple-Fry View Post
Sport/nature/action then the m4/3'rds will probably suit you better (particularly at longer lengths) as they are optimised for the focus method of the cameras.
Mostly Nick has it spot on. However I have to disagree with this bit, at least for sport/action and some nature (birds and stuff) - this is where we need fast long lenses. There are no equivalents (yet) in m43 and there are significant compromises - as Nick mentions - in using the lovely fast big43 lenses with an adapter.

Ciao ... John
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Old 12th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bikie John View Post
Mostly Nick has it spot on. However I have to disagree with this bit, at least for sport/action and some nature (birds and stuff) - this is where we need fast long lenses. There are no equivalents (yet) in m43 and there are significant compromises - as Nick mentions - in using the lovely fast big43 lenses with an adapter.

Ciao ... John
The m.Zuiko 75-300 is not very fast, but it is a high quality lens and focuses very effectively. I have tried oncoming car continuous shooting (L mode - 4fps) with C-AF + Tracking on using the E-M5 with mixed results - it works well up to a certain distance when the relative motion of the car gets too much.

The Panasonic 100-300 is also a very good performer - not much to choose in image quality and it is slightly faster and cheaper.

In general, there is a compromise, optically, when making lenses smaller. Some of that compromise is balanced out by the fact that the Micro Four Thirds Flange-Back distance is shorter, especially for wide angle lenses. Panasonic seems to favour designing lenses that exhibit more geometric distortion and CA, but very good sharpness and contrast and then correcting distortion and CA in-camera (although only for JPEGs).

Ian
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Old 12th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

If I was spending a grand plus on a new camera body, I would want full functionality with the glass that I already have. If I was not getting this full functionality, such as is likely to be the case with the E-M5 (at least until Oly does something about it), then I would feel I was losing out on something very fundemental, the focusing performance and usability. I would have to shell out for an expensive adapter as well.

I accept that everything else would be great but I would feel that I would not be getting my moneys worth from the E-M5. Replacing my glass would just be too costly to do and would not give the equivalent of what I have.

For me, sticking with full 4/3 would be far better and by waiting for the future E-7, which is likely to tick ALL the functionality boxes albeit at a higher price than the E-M5.
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Old 12th April 2012
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

Thanks for your advice and comments. I'm inclined towards Stephen's advice as I think we often look for the ultimate when less than the ultimate satisfies the need - I especially like not having to hump a big dSLR kit around and feel a lot more creative with a smaller camera. That will probably be the case for me - stick with MFT lenses - as long as I can print 12x18 and upload to the libraries then thats probably all I need....however if the results from four thirds format are stunning in terms of IQ when compared to MFT then the full size lens may well be worth it. Now is not a bad time to sit it out and wait for new MFT lenses as there seems to be a few in the pipeline. The 12mm will probably be my first objective for landscape followed by the 75-300 for shooting the dog.

One last question if I may....although functionality i.e. focussing speed is better with Four Thirds, does it follow that IQ is better too?
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Re: Four Thirds Lenses v Micro Four Thirds

It depends on the lens. The 4/3 12-60 is better glass than the m4/3 12-50. But the 4/3 70-300 is probably no better than the m4/3 75-300. But like I said, there are other factors in play, such as the camera sensor, processing firmware, anti-alias filter, image stabilisation, etc, etc. You need to really try a lens, if it provides the quality you or your library seek then fine. If not, sell it! There's no paper answer, only real-world experience.
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