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Old Feb 9, 2011, 4:56 PM   #1
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Default Good (yet not too crazy expensive) lens for indoor w/o flash

Hi,
I'm not getting the pictures I want with my E-510. I have two lenses, the standard kit-lens and the ED 18-180. Both having f/3.5 as minimum.
Indoor photos of my kids portraits or playing activities generally require either flashing or a ridiculous ISO or a ridiculous shutter. Also, I have the feeling that the autofocus is impacted - I sometimes need a LOT of focus-flashes.

So I want to move to a better lens and was looking at the Olympus pancake. However, this is 'only' f/2.8 and I'm afraid it won't dramatically improve the sitation. On the other hand, I don't have the money to spend on that Panasonic f/1.4 or Olympus f/2.0. Finally, I don't want another huge lens like the 18-180.

Can anyone recommend something?
thx,
Michiel
ps: would moving to the E-450 be a good alternative??
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 5:33 PM   #2
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What kind of budget do you have?
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Gears: OM-D E-M5 Mark II and E-M1 MK 1 with 14-150mm Mark II, 12-40mm f2.8, 15mm f8 cap lens, 60mm Macro, 75-300mm, Olympus Trinity -> 25/45/75mm f1.8. On the 4/3 side: 9-18mm and 50-200SWD with the MMF-2 4/3 adapter, FL-36R and FL-50. Also Rokinon mFT 7.5mm f3.5 Fisheye, Pentax 50mm f1.7 with K to m4/3 adapter, Olympus OM 200mm with OM to m4/3 adapter.
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 7:24 PM   #3
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Do you have an accessory flash? You can always use the AF assist beam on the flash to help assist with the focus and keep the flash from going off at the moment of exposure by disabling the flash on the super control panel on the back LCD of the camera. The AF assist light on an accessory flash like the FL36R would be much more efficient and less annoying than what you have using the built-in flash.

About the only faster dedicated lens I can think of would be the 25mm f2.8 pancake..

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc..._ED_Zuiko.html

That's about as good as you are going to do on the cheap.
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 7:40 PM   #4
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The other alternative will be to find some second-hand Sigma 24 or 30mm with their aperture as high as 1.4 or 1.5 ...
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 3:33 AM   #5
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I don't have accessory flash and really don't want to as it makes the whole thing too unwieldy.
My budget is about 150 to 200 which is about $200-$270. I don't mind going second-hand. The 25mm pancake is 200 here - new. But is that one fast enough...? It would be fine to shelf out a few bucks more for a much faster 2nd hand lens...

Thanks for the replies so far!
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 6:34 AM   #6
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This sounds like it may be outside your budget but a pretty good deal on a lens that would go a long way in solving your issue:

A Sigma 50mm 1.4 lens olympus mount

http://forum.fourthirdsphoto.com/showthread.php?t=64213
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 7:41 AM   #7
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If it was just "a few more bucks" than what the 25mm pancake costs, sure, an f2 prime would be great. If you find one, get it. It (whatever "it" is) might be the only one that exists at that price!

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Feb 10, 2011 at 9:37 AM.
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 9:42 AM   #8
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At time of writing B&H (in NY) has a used 50mm f/2 but it's out of your budget at $379US (not incl. shipping, VAT, etc.).
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 2:01 PM   #9
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To the best of my knowledge there are only four moderately fast or better prime normal lenses for the 4:3 mount. The 25 f/1.4 Pany/Leica ($900), the 25mm f/1.8 Sigma (~$540), the 30mm f/1.4 (~$530) and the Oly 25mm f/2.8 (~$230). The Oly would work for me in my living room because I've enough light to make that work at ISO 800-1250 on my e620 and I've used those ISOs enough to be comfortable with that ISO for computer viewing and 4x6 prints. I can't comment of the e520 at those ISOs.

I not sure you could find any of those within your budget used except for the pancake.

A. C.

Last edited by ac.smith; Feb 10, 2011 at 2:05 PM.
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Old Feb 11, 2011, 7:58 AM   #10
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The best thing that happened to my indoor photography of kids with my e510 was a fl36 flash, used as bounce flash. Focus assist is much better too, (no stuttering flashing). Even with an f2 aperture it's just hard to capture moving objects indoors.
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