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[OM] Re: The Harrison Ross Poll

Subject: [OM] Re: The Harrison Ross Poll
From: "Carlos J. Santisteban Salinas" <cjss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 24 Mar 2004 00:57:33 +0100
Hi all,

>What are your 3 favorite Zuikos?
> Why?

28/2 => Superb sharpness from f/2.8-4, and not bad wide open. Nice FOV,
size/weight OK, 49 mm filters. Also makes a great 'standard' lens on the
EOS-300D ;-)

85/2 => Just amazing. Most comments on the 28/2 also apply here, plus this
lens makes *beautiful* pics.

These two lenses make a great all-purpose, small kit. Now, let's go for the
third one...

21/3.5 => Very wide and tiny. Not the sharpest Zuiko, but nice performer at
f/5.6-8. Remarkable lack of light fall-off even wide-open. Also good for
extreme macro with a reversing ring.

Notable runner-ups:

40/2 => The *right* FOV for me, interesting close focusing. I find its
sharpness OK -- not up to the excellent technical performance of the miJ
50/1.8, but I prefer the 40's "image style" (plus the FOV).

35-70/3.5-4.5 => Compact, lightweight, excellent picture quality
(contrasty) and rather good protection against flare, plus an acceptable
minimum focusing distance. A bit slow and limited focal range, though.

135/3.5 => Nice reach, amazingly small -- feels much smaller than its 2.8
brother. A bit critical on flare, though.

> Which features (sharpness, bokeh, size, weight, close-focusing, etc) make
>them rise above the others in their category? (eg.35/2.0 vs 35/2.8)

The 28/2 is the fastest Zuiko in a focal length which is very useful for
me. It's relatively compact, very sharp and contrasty -- an easy choice!

Although I have no experience with the 85's "competition", the 100/2 has
only a bit more reach, but it's bigger and heavier -- ditto for the 90/2.
OTOH, the 100/2.8 is about the same size of the 85, but a full stop slower.

The 21/3.5 is, well, the one I have... however, I'd really like to try the
21/2 -- that should be a dream of a lens!

>Which other lenses in this category have you also used?

All Zuiko 28mms, including the 28-48/4. This one, together with the 28/2.8,
are good performers; just not to my taste. OTOH, the 3.5 takes nice pics,
but it's slow. Also a Vivitar 28/2, Tamron 28/2.5, Z*iss Distagon 28/2.8
and two 28mm Nikk*rs (f/2 & f/3.5).

The closest thing to the 85/2 I've ever used is the Tamron SP 90/2.5 --
quite different, though.

Some time ago I had a 18-28/4-4.5, and just before the zuiko 21mm, my main
ultra-wide angle was the Z*iss Distagon 18/4.

>How does this Zuiko compare to lenses  by other manufacturers you've used
>(N*kon, L*ica, C*non, etc) ?

The Vivitar 28/2 (wide open) is way below the Zuiko's performance. The
Tamron 28/2.5 is "so-so" at f/2.5, nice at f/4 and excellent (nearly Zuiko
quality) from f/5.6. The Distagon 28/2.8 is a fine lens, but not up to the
usual Z*iss standards -- I have no direct comparision with Zuikos, though.
And both Nikk*rs perform very similarly to the equivalent Zuikos -- maybe a
tad sharper wide-open, but 'harsher'.

The Tamron 90/2.5 is an excellent lens, but it doesn't have the 'magic' of
the 85/2 ;-)

The 18-28 was a poor performer at the widest f-stops, plus with heavy
distortion. The Distagon 18mm is tack-sharp at any aperture, but suffers
from severe vignetting at f/4 -- and it's much bigger too, with 86mm



Carlos J. Santisteban


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