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Old Mar 24, 2012, 10:22 AM   #1
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Default 14-42 MZuiko Better Than I Thought

Am doing a product review on a high power LED marine aquarium pendant and needed some decent detailed shots and I was surprised at what the 14-42 could deliver. Not quite macro quality, but good enough for web work. May not need that macro lens after all for this purpose.


DIF 50XP Lens Removed by James Gasta, on Flickr

DIF 50XP LED Multichip by James Gasta, on Flickr
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Old Mar 24, 2012, 11:54 PM   #2
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The Olympus kit Zuikos are very, very good. Very commendable job there.
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Old Mar 25, 2012, 12:27 PM   #3
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The Olympus kit Zuikos are very, very good. Very commendable job there.
Thanks Greg. The LED technology is pretty awesome. That particular pendant uses 50 watts and has the power output of a 250 watt metal halide lamp and by just using 50, one watt LED semiconductors. It also comes with a price tag of 700 bucks. This LED, if ran for 10 hours per day, would last at least 13 1/2 years with no color shift and throws very little heat.
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 12:27 PM   #4
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Optically speaking, the Zuiko Kit lens is good (I'd not consider it very very good, though). I think the Lumix 14-45mm is a better lens overall. The thing with the Zuiko kit is that it feels cheap (perhaps because it's so light weight) and it's slow. When I use my EPL1 with the Lumix kit lens, I notice a huge difference in AF speed.
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 12:58 PM   #5
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I think the Zuiko James has is the "II" MSC version that is night and day, AF speed-wise, compared than the original, slow focusing 14-42. They also corrected some issues the original 14-42 had with blurred shots. Even with the E-PL1, the current MSC-designated Zuikos focus very fast.
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 1:06 PM   #6
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I would agree that the 14-42mm II lens AF's as quickly as any of the MFT lenses I have. I also think it feels cheap due to the plastic construction used including the lens mount I also find that the barrel on mine is a little looser than I would expect from Olympus... I think the final contributor to the cheap feel is the made in china logo..

That said it still is a nice lens that I really need to make a point to use more often.

p.s. off topic the LED is very interesting but at $700 it might never pay back the additional cost compared to a 250 MH especially if electronically ballasted.
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 1:43 PM   #7
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I would agree that the 14-42mm II lens AF's as quickly as any of the MFT lenses I have. I also think it feels cheap due to the plastic construction used including the lens mount I also find that the barrel on mine is a little looser than I would expect from Olympus... I think the final contributor to the cheap feel is the made in china logo..

That said it still is a nice lens that I really need to make a point to use more often.

p.s. off topic the LED is very interesting but at $700 it might never pay back the additional cost compared to a 250 MH especially if electronically ballasted.
Yes, I do have the II version Oly lens. I don't feel the plastic lens mount is a problem. As often as the lenses will be changed there would be minimal wear at best.

As to the LED, there is actually a big difference in savings long term. The LED has an expected life range of 13-14 years with no color shift or loss of intensity. Kilowatt usage amounts to 0.04 per hour which costs me $1.50 per month to operate on a daily 10 hour photoperiod. A twin 175 watt metal halide light cost 10.36 per month to operate. Cost of lamp replacement must be considered as well. A typical metal halide lamp of the correct wavelength for growing corals will run 70.00 each and only lasts for 6-12 months before negative color shift and/or loss of intensity occurs. LEDs also have no heat issues as far as water temperature is concerned. So when you consider the total cost of 264.00 per year with the twin metal halides vs 18.00 per year with the LED, a yearly savings of 246.00 will quickly make up the cost of the pendant.
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 2:58 PM   #8
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Yes, I do have the II version Oly lens. I don't feel the plastic lens mount is a problem. As often as the lenses will be changed there would be minimal wear at best.
I don't think it's necessarily a problem, it just makes it feel cheap compared to the metal mount lenses.

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As to the LED, there is actually a big difference in savings long term. The LED has an expected life range of 13-14 years with no color shift or loss of intensity. Kilowatt usage amounts to 0.04 per hour which costs me $1.50 per month to operate on a daily 10 hour photoperiod. A twin 175 watt metal halide light cost 10.36 per month to operate. Cost of lamp replacement must be considered as well. A typical metal halide lamp of the correct wavelength for growing corals will run 70.00 each and only lasts for 6-12 months before negative color shift and/or loss of intensity occurs. LEDs also have no heat issues as far as water temperature is concerned. So when you consider the total cost of 264.00 per year with the twin metal halides vs 18.00 per year with the LED, a yearly savings of 246.00 will quickly make up the cost of the pendant.
okay I guess the savings would be significant. Have you looked at the electronically ballasted HIDs as they do not suffer from the color shift and loss of intensity that the magnetic ones do, they also don't hum?

Anyways does it actually produce the same Lumens? I've always found the CFL equivalence measurements to be less than accurate, i.e. they say a 15 watt CFL is equivalent to a 60watt incandescent but I would say you really need to get a 20 watt or higher CFL to get to the 60watt equivalence...
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 4:42 PM   #9
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I didn't realize that the EPL2 came with the new 14-42mm.
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Old Mar 26, 2012, 5:33 PM   #10
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Yes, the E-PL2 was the first Pen to ship with the "II" version.
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