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miked2372 Feb 5, 2008 5:10 AM

Hi All,

I currently have an E500 dual kit with the standard kit lenses and an FL36 flash. I have been contemplating buying a lens for closeups/macro shots as I enjoyed taking them with my old P&S. I do not have an unlimited budget so was looking at the Oly 35mm Macro but am worried that it could be slightly restrictive in what it can do. Would I be better off paying the extra for the 50mm for the F2, slightly longer reach and capability for portraits/low-light aswell as macro?
Also, how does the 105mm Sigma compare with these?

Thanks in advance for any input/advice :cool:


jorgen Feb 5, 2008 7:12 AM

I have the 35mm macro and love it. Most of the macros on my blog (choose Show more options and click on macro) are taken with this. I see no limitations with this though lots of people will tell you that you need longer working distance; however, I don't crop my photos much if at all). A good alternative is buying the extension tube and use it with the 40-150mm; however, you will not get 2:1 (in terms of 35mm film) with this.

The 50mm seems to be excellent too and is with f2 a lovely lens. Olympus is expected to bring out a 100mm.


zig-123 Feb 5, 2008 7:14 AM

good morning,

Since I have not used a 35mm macro or the Sigma lens, I can't offer any comparisons to the 50mm macro F2. I do have the 50mm macro and use it primarily for taking portraits. It is without question the best lens that I own. The IQ is great.

you might try running a search in this forum for prior posts on this lens as well as the 35mm macro.

Here is one that I found:

Also, if you haven't read it already, Wrotniak wrote a very detailed analysis of the 50mm macro

HarjTT Feb 5, 2008 5:12 PM

Hi Mike

From all the reviews of the three lenses that you've listed you can;t really go wrong. The 35mm for the price is a simply fantastic lens and I may pick one up in the next month or so. The sigma 105 macro from what I've seen looks to be an an excellent lens and the 150 possibly even better. Check out's reviews of the 35, 50mm and the 105mm - from their review the Sigma 150mm macro seems to be as good as the 50mm F2, although its a stop slower.



tkurkowski Feb 6, 2008 5:09 AM

jorgen wrote:

Olympus is expected to bring out a 100mm.
Has anyone heard anything about this? Speed? I can't find anything on the web, except the Oly lens roadmap says 2008.


miked2372 Feb 6, 2008 6:04 AM

Thanks for all the responses so far, they are much appreciated.

Would the 50mm give me a few more options beside the macro for the price. I am very new to DSLR photography so would like something that covers a few bases aswell as macro (such as low-light, portraits etc) so that I can learn more andfind outwhat areas of photography I am more interested in?



jorgen Feb 6, 2008 8:14 AM

Yes and no. The lenses are said to be equally sharp.

You get half the magnification with a 50mm, meaning that it is somewhat less useful for small insects unless used with an extension tube. The 35mm is also not too long to be used as a walk-around lens. And it is very, very light.

The 50mm is heavier, better built and weatherproof with e1/e3. Some also say it has a tendency to hunt a lot for focus (i.e. try to focus the very long walk from infinity to macro). Quite another thing is that not everyone wants too much sharpness in portraits, but then again you can easily make it less sharp in PhotoShop.


miked2372 Feb 6, 2008 10:40 AM

Thanks Jorgen

Great pics on your site by the way :cool:

What is peoples opinions on the better focal length for portraits as I would like the lens to cover this aswell. I'm beginning tothink the 50mm may be a little too much for me and am starting to consider the sigma 105 or save a few more pennies and get the 35mm!!

Decisions, decisions!!:angry:

jorgen Feb 6, 2008 2:08 PM

Portraits: long enough so the model does not feel you are sticking the lens up his or her nose, but close enough so you can communicate woth signs and words.

In the very old film days a 135mm lens was called "the portrait lens". I have always thought it was too long and used an 80 (or was it 85?)mm f2 in my film days. I had a 100mm as well but this felt slightly long too. But it is an individual thing. Zooms were not very good in those days; today I would use a zoom. Though I have an excellent tripod, I prefer to shoot handheld and move around. There is absolutely no need to get any special lens. Use your 40-150mm and see what suits you.

A 105mm become a 210mm, which is definitely too long.


miked2372 Feb 7, 2008 3:23 AM

That's great advice, thankyou.

So, I will use my 40-150 more for taking any portraits.

Will I see much benefitwith the 50mm zuiko over the 105mm Sigma for low-light situations and is it worth the extra £££?:?

Sorry for coming back with what seem like the same questions but I only really want to buy one lens to cover as much that I am missing as possible (or am I expecting too much!) I know there will be limitations either way with regards to it either not being a great macro lens or not being that good in lower light situations!!

I guess I have to decide which capabilityI want more and then tailor my decision to suit!!

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