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  • Typical lens dilemma

    For a long tome, I have been drooling every time I saw PanaLeica 25/1.4 being sold for a good price, but sadly, there were no money I could've spend.
    Now it seems I may have enough money to buy one (if I won't eat, etc. ) soon, but there is an obvious cheaper option to consider - Sigma 30/1.4.
    So, I would like to ask all of you, who owned or still owns one or both of these lenses, if the 25 is really that good to cost 50 percent more (used) and what are negatives of both. Sigma seems to have slightly more pleasant bokeh as long as there are not many point light sources, while Panny's 25mm seems to be a slightly better choice for indoor shooting in tight spaces..
    One more thing, how these lenses performs on micro bodies (preferably E-M1, but others as well)?
    Regards, Pavel.

    E-1(x2) | ZD 14-45 | ZD 14-54 | ZD 40-150 Mk.1 | ZD 70-300 | FL-50 | Velbon Sherpa 750R
    M42(Pancolar 50/1.8, Pentacon 200/4)+ M42->4/3 reduction

  • #2
    Re: Typical lens dilemma

    I have the PanLeica 25, but I've never used the Sigma, so I can say a bit about the PanLeica, but can't really make a comparison. (Actually, the PanLeica is the only AF MFT lens I've used; my other is the fully-manual Samyang 7.5mm fisheye.) I've been very pleased with the PanLeica. It's extremely sharp. Focusing is very quick and perfectly accurate on the E-M5, especially in bright light. It only struggles to focus in dim, low-contrast situations, but I believe that this has more to do with contrast-detection AF than with the lens. I have not had any problems with the lens at all--no aperture chatter, no reliability problems, etc. The lens feels solid and the focusing ring turns smoothly. I would have expected slightly higher-grade materials for the lens barrel given the price, but again, everything has worked perfectly as-is.

    The biggest reasons I chose the PanLeica over the alternatives (Sigma 30mm, Panasonic 20mm) are the sharpness of the PanLeica and that I prefer the "normal" field of view and perspective of a 25mm lens. If I were making the choice today, there is a good chance I would get the upcoming Olympus 25mm f/1.8 instead since it costs a bit less (comparing new lenses) and it appears to be at least as sharp as the PanLeica from early test reports.

    - Hal -
    A Still Mind - Photography, Music, Meditation, Ministry - www.astillmind.net
    Olympus E-M5; Panasonic-Leica DG Summilux 25mm; Zuiko 12-60 SWD, 50-200 SWD; Sigma 105 Macro; Rokinon (Samyang) 7.5mm fisheye; Olympus 8/1.8 PRO fisheye; FL-50R; Giottos MT-8361 tripod with Gitzo GH2780QR ballhead.

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    • #3
      Re: Typical lens dilemma

      Thanks, Hal. For now, I would like to have a lens I can use on my E-1s and later on E-M1, once the price drops to a reasonable level. The new 25mm m.Zuiko looks like a very nice lens, but is Micro4/3 only and costs quite as much as these faster lenses (comparing eBay prices of new m.Zuiko to used Panny and Sigma), otherwise I might be interested in that one too, as it is significantly smaller.
      Regards, Pavel.

      E-1(x2) | ZD 14-45 | ZD 14-54 | ZD 40-150 Mk.1 | ZD 70-300 | FL-50 | Velbon Sherpa 750R
      M42(Pancolar 50/1.8, Pentacon 200/4)+ M42->4/3 reduction

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      • #4
        Re: Typical lens dilemma

        Oops . . . I thought you were asking about MFT lenses. My experience is with the MFT Panasonic-Leica DG Summilux, not the older 4/3 version.

        - Hal -
        A Still Mind - Photography, Music, Meditation, Ministry - www.astillmind.net
        Olympus E-M5; Panasonic-Leica DG Summilux 25mm; Zuiko 12-60 SWD, 50-200 SWD; Sigma 105 Macro; Rokinon (Samyang) 7.5mm fisheye; Olympus 8/1.8 PRO fisheye; FL-50R; Giottos MT-8361 tripod with Gitzo GH2780QR ballhead.

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        • #5
          Re: Typical lens dilemma

          I've used both, and still own the PL 25mm. I found my copy of the 30mm 1.4 to be hit or miss when it came to focus, and focusing in low light was a chore. The images were tack sharp however when I got the focus right, and pleasant bokeh. I also felt like the images suffered from a different type of noise or grain. The PL 25mm has been great, and is my go to lens just to carry around. With the E-M1 I purchased in December, I've actually found it to be the quickest focusing of all my lenses (I don't own any micro four-thirds lenses, they're all in my signature). The PL 25mm is just as sharp as the Sigma and far more consistent for me. I don't know how the Sigma would focus with the new bodies however.
          E-30 w/HLD-4 I DMC-L1 I 25 f2.8 I 30 f1.4 I 14-50 f2.8-3.5 I 35-100 f2 I 50-200 f2.8-3.5 SWD
          Rokkor 45 f2 I Rokkor 50 f1.7 I Vivitar 55 f2.8 Macro
          http://allurexpressions.com

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          • #6
            Re: Typical lens dilemma

            Thanks, s4ean. Focusing in low light is one of the important factors, as I plan to use it mainly for shooting club concerts and other dimly lit events.
            Got my eye at one Sigma at the moment, with some luck I could get it really cheap. If I won't win the auction, I guess I will save money for a while and buy Panny later.
            Regards, Pavel.

            E-1(x2) | ZD 14-45 | ZD 14-54 | ZD 40-150 Mk.1 | ZD 70-300 | FL-50 | Velbon Sherpa 750R
            M42(Pancolar 50/1.8, Pentacon 200/4)+ M42->4/3 reduction

            Comment

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