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Old wide angle lenses (24mm, 28mm) on m43 ?
  • Hi everyone,

    I read that wider than 35mm RF (Leica) lenses doesn't perform well on m43 (for some optical reasons), does anyone have a wide reflex lens that works well ? I'm looking for a cheaper alternative to the Nokton for a friend, and was wondering if a canon fd 24mm 1.4 would be a good purchase for around 400€.
  • 105 Replies sorted by
  • Anything against Panasonic 25mm F1.4 ?
    You must understand that old full frame glass normally can't compete with Noktor, and especially Leica glass.
    You can look at 28mm Vivitar, I mean cheap F2.8 lenses.
  • >Anything against Panasonic 25mm F1.4 ?
    Apart from the focus-by-wire, not really, but it's not for me, and I'm just looking at possible alternatives.
    The reason I looked at Leica lenses was because I may buy an M6 sometime in the future, and because I have a friend who already have one and a GF1, it could have been a nice photo/video combo.
    I may start buying a good canon FD body (ie F1), to use the FD lenses I bought lately. I will look at M6 if I'm enjoying 35mm film photography
  • The Minolta Rokkor 28mm 2.8 is not bad, but the 21mm 2.8 has pretty bad CA.

    In wide-angle land, legacy glass below 35mm can't compete with modern lenses, I second Vitaliy's comment.
  • i have just bought a Samyang mc automatic 1:2.8 f=28mm (canon FD mount) and is sharper than the (probably bad copy) Canon 28mm 2.8 (canon FD mount) i used to have (that one cost me U$60)
    , the funny thing is that i manage to get an unopened box, so my samyang is brand new :)
    it cost me arround U$60

    also, i now have a Canon 20mm f2.8 (canon FD mount), (that i get on a trade, i exchange a 80-200 f4 canon fd + the canon fd 28mm 2.8 + U$40) and i must say that i absolutely love it, specially because i can place a wide adapter in front, of course loosing some sharpness in the corner but not on the center, but, i still can use it wide open with the adapter, and i actually use a 58mm wide adapter with step down rings ( being the canon fd 20mm, 72mm in the front) without any vignetting, so i can have something like a 15mm at 2.8; the wide adapter is a Vivitar series1 0.43x threaded in the back at 58mm, and that cost me U$15 on B&H a few months ago
  • ap, and the Samyang has a close focus of macro 1:6x wich is about 20cms, it can be used without changing any hardware setting just by rotating the focus ring.

    i can take some pics if you are interested in pixel peeping, but to me it looks reeeeaally good, new lenses to me look oversharped and videoish
  • I can highly reccomend the Nikkor 28/2 AIS - lovely old school glass.
  • I have the Canon FD 24mm f/2.8, 20mm f/2.8, and 17mm f/4 lenses. The 17mm is one of my more expensive FD lenses and honestly, I don't really love it. I typically slap on the Panny 14mm pancake instead. The 17mm is rare for legacy glass this wide in that it's rectilinear, but I'm planning to buy a modern 12mm manual focus lens for wide angle use. (Either the Nokton or Olympus) Modern glass and the m43 format really do have a hands down advantage at this focal length.
  • As was mentioned above, I haven't had great results with legacy glass <35mm. On a whim I just bought a collection of old lenses that included a 28mm Focal MC Auto f2.8 (Minolta mount). I was very pleasantly surprised at the performance of this lens. Great contrast and sharp focus. I think I was lucky as it appears the previous owner/s took very good care of all of the lenses in the collection.
  • I got a Yashica ML 24mm f/2.8 in C/Y that works really well. I noticed some CA/fringing in overexposed white areas against dark branches when they were in focus etc.. though that kind of situation you'd want to advoid anyway.
  • @lenuisible
    It is true, I had horrible results with a Contax G 28mm lens. Apparently there is an issue if the rear element gets too close to the sensor. Something that wide angle range finder lens do. It was a big bummer for me. I guess film emulsion thickness solved that issue. Our sensors don't work that way.

    Thats a good price on the FD if its in good shape, you could resell it for a profit or break even with out too much trouble. I had the 24mm FD F2 which is suposed to be a better performer then the 1.4L -

    Here is a test I did with the 24mm F2 I did a long time ago.


    Here is a test with the Contax G so you can check out the IQ issues with using a wide RF lens on a m43 camera.

    @ :15 look at the corners. No way a contax G lens would do that on a contax g body.
  • I sold my Voigtlander 21mm cos I didn't like the colours even though the glass is very sharp. I was also getting a bit of ghosting on the side, despite having a Voigtlander hood on. Purple fringing everytime there is light to my left.

    Right now my widest is the 20mm Flektogon. Not the best lens for m4/3 - lens not maximised for its ability to shoot architecture with little distortion. Compared to the Voigt, maybe not as sharp.
  • Thanks everyone for your answers, it seems there are some alternatives, more in the f2.8 range than the f1.4, and more in the reflex then the RF, but good to know !

  • I just tested my Zeiss/Contax 21mm F2.8 (the CY fully manual version made in Japan) and compared with the Panasonic 14-140 at matching focal lengths and from wide open to F11, printed full frame (down rezed in Photoshop) 8x10's and 200% blowups. Little difference. The Zeiss was sharp corner to corner, but to my surprise the 14-140 was as well. Obviously the Zeiss is faster, but lacks zoom and OIS. So not all 35mm wide angles are bad on the GH2.

  • I tried a Vivitar (Komine) 28mm f2.0. Almost no contrast and very soft when wide open, and when stopped down a couple of stops still easily beaten by the short end of the14-45mm Lumix. Avoid.

  • One of the sharpest lenses in my collection is the Sigma 24mm ultra wide II. The copy I have is AF, and I use a cheap adapter that has an aperture wheel. It is sharp to the edges even in full frame. For 28mm I use the Vivitar Close Focus SMS, they are hard to find in Pentax but you can sometimes find them in MD mount for a bit less money. Of course, there are pricier alternatives.

  • I've tried the Sigma 20, 24, 28, 30, and 50mm primes in Nikon and Four Thirds mounts. While they're a little soft wide-open for still photography, they're plenty sharp for HD video resolution. The Sigma 20, 24, and 28mm in Nikon mount have manual focus rings with hard stops at each end. making them very usable with follow-focus gears. The Sigma 30 and 50mm have HSM focus rings that lack hard stops. However, the 30mm has virtually no focus breathing and is very fast at f1.4.

  • The 28mm Takumar is only f/3.5, but it's really crazy sharp right at the start. The sharpest i've seen with the 20mm 1.7 pancake, really. Don't really know why it's so underated, cause i also have the 50mm SMC 1.4 and the 24mm 3.5 to compare with.

  • I have a Rokkor 24mm 2.8 VFC, and that beast is tack sharp from the start.

  • Had a 21 mm Konica but F4 - v sharp edge to edge - Lomo 28 F 2.5 is funky and cheap

  • Ive just been given an old OM 24mm 2.8 Olympus / Vivatar and for a freebie its pretty darn good! It was made by Cosina in either 1986 or 76 judging by the serial. :-)

    OM Vivatar 24mm 2.8 at f4 in motion.png
    2560 x 1440 - 3M
    microgrowth on the shed roof - vivatar 24mm 2.8 at f2.8.png
    2560 x 1440 - 3M
  • So can the canon fd 20mm 2.8 be recommended on a gh2? I was offered it for little money...It is not the perfect 35mm equivalent, but almost...

  • I believe this theory (old lenses below 35mm performs badly in GH2) is completly wrong. Of course there are lenses better than others. And using the old lenses you need to stop down one fstop to get good sharpness, because m43 sensor enlarge the middle of the lens image and this increases imperfections.

  • I am just testing a Tokina RMC 17 f3.5 on the Lumix cameras. Resolution appears to be similar to Lumix 14 mm Pancake, but without digital sharpening. Seems to be pretty close to ideal for video with minor barrel distortion, but no color issues. Tokina RMC 24 f2.8 is not bad either. For both lenses contrast is slightly reduced at full aperture, but manageable.

    Vivitar above appears to be nice. If the serial on Vivitar's starts with 37****, then they are supposedly the same lens as the Tokina RMC 24 f2.8. As a sidenote, when using lower contrast lenses, it is a good idea to try other Film Mode than Smooth or Nostalgic (Vibrant, for example) to capture the highest amount of hues.

    tokina17pic1.jpg
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