Panasonic Lumix G 14mm f/2.5 and Pentax DA 21mm f/3.2 - An Informal Easter Shootout

vincechu

Veteran
At times me too. Sometimes I'm not sure how I can improve my sharpness anymore without PP, as I've tried AF fine tuning. However, despite all this I'm really liking the look I'm getting in my photos from the Pentax and FA31, just a shame about these minor niggles. Have to say I'm considering selling my Pentax stuff going back to m4/3rds with a GH2 and one of the Oly Pens (the used prices are really attractive atm in the UK!) with the 20 1.7, PL45 and 14-140mm. Really missing the lightweight and discreteness of it all.

Amin and Armando, I'm getting the feeling that both of you would keep the GH2 if you had to pick one system only?
 

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Location
Houston, Texas
Real Name
Jack
Yes, I'd pick the GH2.

It's weird how I keep coming back to liking the m4/3 more than others, after trying to move away from it -- first with the A55, and then with the K5.
 

vincechu

Veteran
Amin: A while back I think you had a G1 and GH1? Do you find the GH2 to be significantly better in terms of IQ only? (G1 i guess would be an easy yes, but DXO rates the GH1 sensor better than the GH2 i think)

The used prices for the other two are 1/4 or 1/2 of the GH2 at the moment, so they're very tempting as I could use the savings for glass. I really need to get down to a store or rent a GH2, to try it out, I guess I'm a littled tired of trying to find the right gear and want to find it soon, so I can focus on my actual photography lol

Armando: Haha I went from G1 to D7000, then thought about GH2 but got the K5... now I'm thinking about the GH2 lol. Somehow I think I should have kept the G1 and invested my money in glass instead of wasting money on switching systems all the time, and then bought the GH2. Have to say the Oly Pen's are really tempting too, for a more discrete street solution, and look very sexy with leather cases... my gear addictions kicking it right now lol I'll make my decisions in 2 weeks time though, as I'm busy with exams :-( Guess I'm scrapping the GXR idea and going for the GH2 and 14-140mm,, 20, PL45, and a dressed up in leather sexy Pen (see here: http://aki-asahi.com/store/html/E-PL2/case/EPL2LeatherCase_e.php) as I wont afford a leica any time soon.
 

intense

Regular
I was a Pentax user too. I can say Pentax has some really nice lenses and very useful features in their bodies. But the main reason I switched to Olympus was the camera's jpeg engine. The jpegs from a pentax body are just not processed right in my opinion. That's why after every weekend hike I used to come back with several hundred Pentax RAW shots and that's when the pain started every time. Hours and hours of post processing is just so boring. I got really pleasing results, but at a high cost. I lost some money in the system switch (50/1.4, nice wireless flash and superb 75-150/4 legacy lens), but I have no regrets.
 

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Location
Houston, Texas
Real Name
Jack
Amin: A while back I think you had a G1 and GH1? Do you find the GH2 to be significantly better in terms of IQ only? (G1 i guess would be an easy yes, but DXO rates the GH1 sensor better than the GH2 i think)

The used prices for the other two are 1/4 or 1/2 of the GH2 at the moment, so they're very tempting as I could use the savings for glass. I really need to get down to a store or rent a GH2, to try it out, I guess I'm a littled tired of trying to find the right gear and want to find it soon, so I can focus on my actual photography lol

Armando: Haha I went from G1 to D7000, then thought about GH2 but got the K5... now I'm thinking about the GH2 lol. Somehow I think I should have kept the G1 and invested my money in glass instead of wasting money on switching systems all the time, and then bought the GH2. Have to say the Oly Pen's are really tempting too, for a more discrete street solution, and look very sexy with leather cases... my gear addictions kicking it right now lol I'll make my decisions in 2 weeks time though, as I'm busy with exams :-( Guess I'm scrapping the GXR idea and going for the GH2 and 14-140mm,, 20, PL45, and a dressed up in leather sexy Pen (see here: http://aki-asahi.com/store/html/E-PL2/case/EPL2LeatherCase_e.php) as I wont afford a leica any time soon.

I have/had a black leather with white stitching Aki Asahi case for the EP2 that I donated to my father. It is indeed one sexy looking camera dressed in black leather. But then, so are other things dressed in black leather! :eek: Just kidding!!!

Not sure if the digital Pen is that much more of a discrete street shooter than a G series. IMO, I think the ultimate camera for discrete street shooting (notwithstanding using a small P&S) is the NEX with its swivel LCD. Too bad it doesn't have more pancake lenses. Heck, too bad that it just doesn't have more lenses for it, period!

A local computer store has the G1 kit, which includes the original 14-45 lens for $350. The 14-45 alone is now being sold for $350. At one point, I think the GH1 body only was also on sale for $350.

Good luck with the exams!
 

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Location
Houston, Texas
Real Name
Jack
I was a Pentax user too. I can say Pentax has some really nice lenses and very useful features in their bodies. But the main reason I switched to Olympus was the camera's jpeg engine. The jpegs from a pentax body are just not processed right in my opinion. That's why after every weekend hike I used to come back with several hundred Pentax RAW shots and that's when the pain started every time. Hours and hours of post processing is just so boring. I got really pleasing results, but at a high cost. I lost some money in the system switch (50/1.4, nice wireless flash and superb 75-150/4 legacy lens), but I have no regrets.

The JPG from the K5 is actually decent. I am a RAW shooter, even when I use the EP2 and other Oly cameras. But I accidentally had set the K5 in JPG using the "bright" profile. The bright profile increases contrast, sharpness, and saturation. The photos came out very nice and didn't need any PP. I am with you about not wanting to spend hours and hours in PP. Fortunately, I've used LR3.3 enough to get all my basic PP done pretty quickly.
 

Amin

Hall of Famer
Amin: A while back I think you had a G1 and GH1? Do you find the GH2 to be significantly better in terms of IQ only? (G1 i guess would be an easy yes, but DXO rates the GH1 sensor better than the GH2 i think)

To me, GH2 has noticeably (though not massively) better IQ than the G1. Comparing to GH1 is more difficult, in part because the GH1 defines nominal ISO differently. The GH2 exposes RAW to preserve highlight headroom, and the GH1 exposes RAW to preserve shadow latitude. I think this was necessary with the GH1 because that camera's sensor had issues with banding in shadows. The GH2 has minimal banding even when shadows are pushed. For me, the lack of banding and snappier AF with GH2 makes it worth the price difference over GH1, and I'd pick the GH1 over any MFT camera aside from the GH2.

I hear there are some GH1s without the banding issue, but I can't speak to that from experience. I can say that Nik Dfine is very good at removing banding from affected GH1 files.
 

Amin

Hall of Famer
I don't exactly feel the need for the DA70, but it is nice in that it gives me the opportunity to go a bit more shallow w/ DOF. Also, the DA21 and DA70 make a very nice two-lens kit when going out with the Pentax.

Here's an example of the difference in DOF between the DA70 wide open on the K5 (first) and the PL45 wide open on the GH2 (second):

5671304476_41b34154c8_b.jpg


5671304454_32443b0a3e_b.jpg
 

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Location
Houston, Texas
Real Name
Jack
Definitely shallower on the DA70 with bigger aperture, larger sensor and longer length. That being said, I'm pleasantly surprised at the DOF of the PL45. And pretty smooth bokeh too! I'm very tempted to get a PL45. And DA70. I just re-picked up an Oly 14-150 though, to be my walkaround daylight lens.
 

Amin

Hall of Famer
You have to mask in Photoshop, but Photoshop has some tools that make it pretty easy now. Hair is tricky, but in this case the part around the hair was already blurred, so it was easy. Took less than 5 min. I'm going to review Bokeh 2 for S.C. I think it's a great product!
 

Naveed Akhtar

Regular
Location
London, UK
Hi Amin, since you were asking for a good 50mm f1.8 at Pany camp, have you seen or tried the new Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 ASPH Leica DG SUMMILUX? What is your reaction if you did? and if you liked it, do you still wanna keep Pentax K5 gear? Sorry for too many iffs!
 

stillshunter

Super Moderator Emeritus
Location
Down Under
Real Name
Mark
Same here. The main thing keeping the Pentax in my house is the 70/2.4. If Olympus or Panasonic make a good 50/1.8, I think my K5 will be in the classifieds.

Mighty glad you don't have the FA31 and FA77 then Amin...otherwise you'd be in a real quandary parting with the K5. Having said that I'd love to have witnessed a shoot-out between the FA31 and the PL25. I've had, and loved, both. Unfortunately never at the same time. However I think I actually prefer the rendering of the Leica Panasonic offering (and for those unfamiliar with gravity of Pentax's legendary 31/1.8 please assume this is a big call) ....now if the PL25 had the FA31's build quality and distance scale I'd almost class it as perfect :blush:
 

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