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Old Dec 12, 2012, 10:46 AM   #1
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Default Lumix 20mm f1.7 for my existing EPL-1 or buy a new EPL-3 for the same price?

Hi there -

I'm going to apologize in advance for my lack of knowledge, as I'm pretty new to the whole world of Micro 4/3 and for that matter, photography in general.

I bought an EPL-1 a year ago which came with a 14-42mm kit lens and a zoom lens (M.Zuiko ED 14-150mm f/4-5.6). The main reason for buying this camera was to take pictures of my very active 5 year old boy indoors, and sadly the kit lens isn't very good.

After doing a bit of research I saw that the Panasonic 20mm f1.7 lens would be a good choice for low light photos, so I'm strongly considering that. However, at $350 for the lens, I'm wondering if i should just spend an extra $100 and buy a new m4/3 camera, since there are m4/3 cameras around that price range (such as the EPL-3 or the Lumix Gf5).

I'm not familiar with whether these m4/3 cameras I mention come with a better kit lens than the EPL-1 kit lens (which isn't working for me).

Any thoughts on this would be much appreciated! Am i just better off using the 20mm f/1.7 on the EPL-1, or just buy a new m4/3. I would ideally like to keep within my budget of $400-$450.

Thanks!
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 12:30 PM   #2
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If you buy the E-PL3, you are still getting basically the same lens but an updated version. It will be no better in low light. The f1.7 Panny would be a much better lens in low light. Check Ebay, there are a few used models in there that you may be able to get for under 300.00.
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_trks...at=0&_from=R40
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 2:27 PM   #3
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James has it right. At this point low E-PL3 prices are out there because the new E-PL5 and E-PM2 have been introduced. If it's better image quality you are after, one of those are what you want. If it's the price, go for the 20mm f1.7. The E-PL3 with be faster operationally than the E-PL1, but image quality should be very similar, if not equal since the two models use the same sensor.
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 4:06 PM   #4
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I would get the lens. You can always buy another olympus or panasonic m4/3 camera and use the existing lenses you have bought. The prices on the cameras continue to drop, but the lens prices are pretty level comparatively.

The EPL-1 isn't the fastest focusing camera and the newer cameras will beat it, but I think you will be more pleased with a better lens. Additionally, you could get the 25mm f1.4 panasonic, which will auto focus faster, but it is more expensive (500 new).
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Old Dec 12, 2012, 8:28 PM   #5
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Thank you all for responding. After going through all of it and doing some additional research, i've decided to go with the lens. Now, the question is, WHICH LENS? Panasonic 20mm F/1.7 or the 25mm F1.4 ?

I've read that the 25mm focuses faster and the auto focus isn't noisy, like the 20mm (esp. for video). The 25mm is also much more expensive. I've read a lot of the pros and cons between the two, but what i really want to know is this:

Should i shell out the extra cash for the 25mm to be used on the EPL1? Or just get the 20mm? I've only been using the auto settings on the camera, but i'm slowly learning how to manually change the settings.

Thanks!
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 7:40 AM   #6
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Well the 25mm is actually a Leica lens which is excellent glass and the lens is a little faster. If I were faced with that decision I would probably go with the Panny/Leica. Keep in mind that you will lose some field of view with the Leicca (5mm) but probably not enough to matter.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 7:52 AM   #7
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go with the lens, it will open up a new dimension of photos for you. And it works great with the epl1, and will worth adding to the lens line up you have. And later when you update the body, it will do a great job on the new body as well.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 7:55 AM   #8
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Actually on m4/3 25 vs 20mm is 40mm vs 50mm. The difference is actually quite a bit. for candid shots, you may not be able to back up enough. And it is not a pancake so it is not as compact.

with the correction with the m4/3 for the lens, you will be hard press to notice the difference without pixel peeping.
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 10:36 AM   #9
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i would get the 1.4 which requires 1/3 less light at the same shutter speed

oversimplified:

the f stop (1.4~1.7~2.8~5.6, etc) is a measurement/ratio of the lens' light gathering/admittance ability

the smaller the #, the more light it admits, resulting in a faster shutter speed, resulting in a less blurry image (due to motion of subject)

f1.4 is 1.5 times as 'fast' as f1.7

each number is 2x the next as to exposure:

f22~f16~f11~f8~f5.6~f4~f2.8~f2~f1.4~f1.1~(impossib le to attain f1)

due to construction and mfgring the cost increase is geometric

so, comparing the leica 1.4 to the lumix 1.7 :

leica vs 'wanna-be' ~ leica wins
1.4 vs 1.7 ~ 1.5 times faster worth $150 ~ your decision
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Old Dec 13, 2012, 11:33 AM   #10
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It is .5x faster, not 1.5x. in a low light situation that .5x really does not mean to much. shutter speed at .33 sec or .5 is not going to make a huge difference. If it were 1.5x then it would make a difference.
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Last edited by shoturtle; Dec 13, 2012 at 2:18 PM.
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