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Thread: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

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    Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    For various reasons I have sold my full frame DSLR outfit and moved back to an MFT kit based around a GF1 and a G2.

    I am fairly sorted with lenses now but need to get myself a wide angle zoom. The choices are pretty restricted being the Olympus 9-18 or the Panasonic 7-14. I have used the Panasonic in the past and know it is a stellar lens in terms of IQ but I am struggling with the huge price difference here (899 vs 499)
    I've done the usual trawl of reviews and generals consensus seems to be that the Panasonic is sharper at the wide end but towards the longer end some say the Olympus betters it.

    I like the fact the Olympus is perhaps better as a walkaround lens and I also like the smaller size but I would really value some input from people who have used the Olympus lens on a Panasonic body, does the camera implement distortion and CA control as it would with the Panasonic lens.
    Also any feedback from any guys who have used both lenses and their views would be very helpful

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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    I have the 7-14 and have not tried the 9-18 but I'll say there's a surprisingly big difference between 7mm and 9mm and once I've used the 7-14mm at 7mm I can't imagine settling for 9mm. Plus the 7-14mm is one of the most amazing lenses available for any camera in any format so if you can afford it, I wouldn't hold back.

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    Senior Member Amin's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    Your Panasonic camera will implement distortion but not CA control with this or any other Olympus lens. Lateral CA is pronounced with this lens at 9mm but easy to fix in most postprocessing apps. If you shoot RAW, it's easy to address the CA in Lightroom or C1.

    The tradeoffs are what you said. The Oly has good performance, but not as good as the Panasonic when both are compared at 9mm. The ranges are different. Some people want that extra wide angle. I think I prefer the Oly range (9-18) over the Panasonic. The size/weight difference is very, very noticeable, and it's nice that the Oly takes filters.

    I've long had the Panasonic, but if I were choosing between them today, I think I'd go for the Olympus, which I had for a brief while on loan from B&H for review.

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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    As I answered you on DP Review - one lens is ultra ultra wide, second is ultra wide. Difference of 2mm on wide end is huge.

    I do have 7-14mm and use it mostly on 7mm to play with perspective distortion. I was walking recently through NY with it on one body and 45mm on secondf body - and it was perfect as walk around lens, too. Size is small for me, I used to have 16-35mm II on 5D II in past. So it is tiny and light for me.

    Let me pass the same link as onm DP Review, may be useful for readers of Get DPI:
    http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/how-...ide-lenses.htm

    It is rather rarely when Panasonic owners use Olympus u43 lenses. But may be different with 43 lenses.

    Some shots on 7mm:












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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    Thanks for the input here guys

    I have today been down to the camera store and bought myself the Olympus 9-18, the main reasons being it suits me better as a general walkaround lens (although I might at some point miss the 7mm) and I love how compact it is.

    The size means it really suits my GF1 and means I can carry the GF1 with the 9-18 plus my 20mm pancake and newly acquired 14mm pancake.

    The additional benefit was that for the price of the 7-14 I got the 9-18, plus the 143mm pancake plus a flash

    Again, thanks very much for all the input

    Dave

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    Senior Member ggibson's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    I see you've already made your choice, but I thought I would give my input in case others are reading this trying to make the same decision. I own both. Bought the 7-14mm first, then the 9-18mm when it became available. Advantages of each:

    7-14mm:
    + 7mm does make a difference if you can use it
    + Slightly better image quality
    + Build quality is great

    9-18mm:
    + 9mm is still super-wide
    + Tiny size
    + Takes filters--my CPL lives on this lens. NDs also for slowing the shutter speed.
    + 18mm feels more "normal" compared to 14mm
    + Much more affordable

    Honestly, I bought the 9-18mm because the 7-14mm was TOO wide. It's difficult to use ultra-wide lenses well, and I didn't feel comfortable owning a $1000+ lens that I only brought out 10% of the time. I'm much happier with the Olympus and being able to spend the difference elsewhere in my kit

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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    I handled the Olympus 9-18 next to the Panasonic 7-14 at the store a couple of weeks ago. Personally, I'd take the 7-14 over the 9-18 purely on feel ... I'm not a big fan of collapsible lenses, they don't feel as solid I my hands.

    How well they perform compared to one another is mostly irrelevant as both seemed very good indeed, but I expect the 7-14 will stand out better on Panasonic bodies due to having both CA and geometric lens correction parameters, which Panasonic bodies use and store in the raw files as well.

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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    I also decided for the 9-18. Not so much for the size (howevr the smaller size doesnt hurt) but for the range which I find more usefll when you do not want to switch lenses too much and use the lens more often.
    The 7-14 still sounds interesting as a more special lens (and constant f4.0).
    If I was using m4/3 as only system then I might want the 7-14.

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    Re: Olympus 9-18 vs Panasonic 7-14 - advice please

    I had the 9-18 ZD lens which I used by adaptor. While I liked it a lot and feel that the 9mm end is about as wide as I'd like to go, it might be handy at times to have 7mm.

    I very much liked the build quality of the Oly ZD 9-18 and appreciate why Godfrey would say he may tend towards the 7-14 for that reason. Of course that comes to money and budgets.

    The 4/3 format is not as wide as I like (being a fan of 6x9) and so while I like a 21mm lens on my full frame 35mm I think I'd need more like 8mm to equal that on 4/3

    A parting shot from my 9mm showing perhaps enough perspective distortion on an interior to convince me that I don't want wider without shift!!


    vaticanInterior7 by obakesan, on Flickr

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    re: ... a little digression

    Quote Originally Posted by pellicle View Post
    I had the 9-18 ZD lens which I used by adaptor. While I liked it a lot and feel that the 9mm end is about as wide as I'd like to go, it might be handy at times to have 7mm.

    I very much liked the build quality of the Oly ZD 9-18 and appreciate why Godfrey would say he may tend towards the 7-14 for that reason. Of course that comes to money and budgets.

    The 4/3 format is not as wide as I like (being a fan of 6x9) and so while I like a 21mm lens on my full frame 35mm I think I'd need more like 8mm to equal that on 4/3
    The 21mm FoV on 35mm Film (2:3 proportion, 24x36 mm) format is 81.2 horizontal x 59.5 vertical, 91.7 on the diagonal.

    For the similar FoV on FourThirds standard format, 11mm nets 76.3 x 61.2, 89.1 and 9mm (on FourThirds cropped to 2:3 proportions) nets a little wider: 87.7 x 65.1, 98.2.

    But I tend to find that "90 degrees on the diagonal" about as wide as I want 99+% of the time. I'm more inclined to use the 35mm Film camera's 24mm FoV for my ultra-wide work nowadays. I find for my use with the SLRs the Olympus ZD 11-22/2.8-3.5 is a perfect balance of ultra-wide to wide-normal FoV, speed, quality and overall size/weight. It's a superb performer.

    My small, cheap wide lens for the G1 is a Cosmicar 12.5mm f/1.4 TV C-mount lens I butchered to fit a mount adapter. It returns a nice square field with just a little corner vignetting. Example comparing its FoV with a couple others:


    A very handy lens and a pleasure to shoot with. Cost me nothing but the price of a mount adapter since I had the lens rolling around in a drawer from a dead video surveillance camera. ;-)

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    Senior Member pellicle's Avatar
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    Re: ... a little digression

    Hi Godfrey

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    The 21mm FoV on 35mm Film (2:3 proportion, 24x36 mm) format is 81.2 horizontal x 59.5 vertical, 91.7 on the diagonal.

    For the similar FoV on FourThirds standard format, ... 9mm (on FourThirds cropped to 2:3 proportions) nets a little wider: 87.7 x 65.1, 98.2.
    ok ... so my memory was close but wrong way round (I sold the 9mm some time before leaving Finland); the 9mm on 4/3 is a wee bit wider (in the horizontal) than that of the 21mm on the 35mm frame.

    thanks :-)

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