Wednesday, November 21, 2012
This photo was taken as a local Bubbalous we'd stopped at to pick up our smoked Thanksgiving turkey. On the way back to the car I spied this combination of items which triggered something odd in my mind. Right before we left I grabbed a shot of this with my Olympus E-P2 and the Panasonic 20mm opened up to f/1.7, the 20's fastest aperture. Ignoring the "quality" of the image for the moment I want to direct your attention the lack of distortion in the photo, all those very straight lines. The JPEG was converted from Raw (ORF) in Lightroom 4.2, with no distortion correction applied. The straight lines came right out of the camera as it were.
Compare this to the latest Olympus 1.8/17mm µ4:3rds lens which Olympus is currently selling for $500. Just about everyone who's tested the lens has damned it with faint praise, except for Lenstip, who came right out and bluntly stated that "it lags behind everything you were used to when dealing with Olympus optics." One particular con was "very high distortion", especially in Raw. When the lens was announced I'd thought I might get the new 17mm and sell the slower 2.8/17mm and Lumix 1.7/20mm. But now, maybe not.
It was good to have the Olympus E-P2 and the Panny 20mm with me today. The Panasonic 20mm image quality is superb, especially when compared to the Sony E-mount 18-55mm, and it would appear, to Olympus' latest 17mm. I have discovered the real differences between the Olympus Pens and the Sony NEX. If you have the time to compose the photo, and are in an artistic mood, then the Pen and its various primes are my go-to tools. But if I have to grab-and-go and I need to know I'll have something reasonably adequate no matter what, then the NEX is the camera to use. It's also the best camera to set up on automatic and hand to someone else. All those photos of my MAKOplasty were taken by the nurse after I set the 5N to full auto. And they all turned out just fine. I'm going to keep both systems.