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Old September 6th, 2011, 10:42 PM   #16
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

you aren't very popular with my wife right now Jeff!!! She wanted to know where I got the idea to spend more $$ on glass.....sorry but I had to cough up your name!!!!

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Old September 7th, 2011, 02:39 AM   #17
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Oooops, sorry about that, Mark!

If you buy it, I hope you like it as much as I do. With all of the complaints we've had about not having a wide, fast lens, I'm surprised there aren't more of us raving about it. It costs, but you do get what you pay for in this case.

DOF is deep, which makes it so much easier to work with. I can walk around with it and virtually all of my shots are in focus, which feels close to a miracle. I am not using any regular video cameras at this time, so it is really handy for me.

There is a crusty old guy that works at a camera store locally, and I asked him what lens he uses most, and he answered without hesitation "wide". Now I see why!
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Old September 7th, 2011, 07:10 AM   #18
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

So Jeff, do you think this lens will take the place of the 20mm pancake? Do you still feel they are comparable in low light?
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Old September 7th, 2011, 08:19 AM   #19
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Hi Tim. The 20mm is F/1.7, certainly better in low light, but f/2.0 is comparable.

The 12mm will not take the place of the 20mm for me. I need both. They really are completely different lenses. I am using the 12mm for things I used to use the 20 for, with more success. I can take the camera off the tripod with the 12mm attached and dive into the dance floor when it's packed and get stable footage I couldn't with the 20mm. With the 20mm it's too tight to do that when your in the middle of the partiers, cause you keep having to watch focus, and often you must back away to get a whole scene in the frame. The 12mm has such a deep DOF focus has become a non-issue. I lightly depress the shutter button to achieve focus, and I'm there, without things going from out of focus to focus in obvious fashion, it's just smoother with the 12mm, cause it tends to be close to in-focus most of the time anyway. The 20mm is more of a problem in that department.

It is still a fixed lens, and whenever I run the thing I am wishing it had a zoom, but it doesn't, of course.

I am finding the whole format restrictive, but that is my own fault for going with all GH2s. My videos no longer have the extreme closeups they used to, and it has really killed the emotional impact of the videos I make. I really miss/want/need a video camera.
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Old September 13th, 2011, 04:49 PM   #20
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

....
I wish I had not read this post either...
The wife is going to be pissed if I spend more $$ LOL
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Old September 14th, 2011, 07:47 AM   #21
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Story of my life. The better question is when is my wife not upset with me for buying new toys. I was just considering buying a telephoto lens but now Jeff has the the gears turning in my head again.

For all the reasons Jeff likes the 12mm is the reason I almost bought the 14mm pancake. Easy to use in run and gun and quick auto focus. The 12mm is so much better in low light however.

Tough choices.
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Old September 14th, 2011, 04:06 PM   #22
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

As a follow up, I've shot four weddings using the 12mm as of this past weekend.

It is still my favorite lens for general purposes. I am not very skilled using the GH2, I should be clear about that firstly. I am 55years old, and it is true we learn slower as we get older, and I never was a fast learner to begin with.

With this in mind, I like the 12mm because it: A. captures great images B. It is easy to use.

I shot a getting ready segment using the lens this past Saturday, all hand held, and the footage came out great. You can get moving shots with it using the classic handheld methods. I'm not very steady, and my footage looked pretty damned good. Mind you my exposures were not perfect, nor my focus, but that has more to do with me than the lens.

If you are a wedding shooter, it is almost a must have, IMO. The Olympus 12-60mm F/2.8-4.0 is also extremely handy, just as wide, but with a zoom, and of course you lose lowlight ability when you zoom, but I still love that lens also.

If you are a casual shooter or hobbyist, the 12mm F/2.0 might be skipped for the 12mm-60mm or the Olympus 14-54mm F/2.8-3.5. If I didn't shoot weddings, I'd definitely skip the prime and go for the zoom, same price and you get alot more bang for the buck.
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Old September 30th, 2011, 09:05 AM   #23
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Hey Jeff, I'm just about ready to pull the trigger on the 12mm. I just have one question for ya, how well is the auto focus working in low light at receptions? That's my main concern because I will be using it on a steady cam some and will not be able to use manual focus. From what I've read, the continous focus is working really well on the 12mm, just not sure about how well it does in low light. I'm guessing not to well if there is back light from bands etc.
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Old September 30th, 2011, 09:14 AM   #24
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Tim when there's low contrast in the scene the lens has a hard time auto focusing. Any camcorder does. I use it all the time on my glidecam and the af100 at the reception. Works incredibly well on a large sensor camcorder. I give it a double thumbs up. Check your email as I'll send you a link to a job I did using that lens.
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Old September 30th, 2011, 09:20 AM   #25
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Tim, just watch this, and you'll not hesitate for one second: GH2 Hack wedding with new 12mm Olympus

Tim, it's a near perfect lens for me, it's auto focus is superb.
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Old October 1st, 2011, 09:42 AM   #26
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Thanks for the link. I had just watched that film the night before I posted you the question and the reason I got so interested in the 12mm. No doubt, those are some beautiful images......most of it is in very good lighting though. 90% of the weddings I do have bands with a very dark dance floor, so it's up to me to light it up but you can only do so much.

Would love to see some footage of the 12mm on a steadycam using auto focus..... in a darker reception hall.
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Old October 2nd, 2011, 11:59 PM   #27
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Tim, in low light any lens will have issues with continual autofocus, it's just the nature of the beast. But the feature works better on that lens than on any M4.3 lens with the GH2, so there's no where else to go. For a steady cam, in low light, 12mm at f/2.0 is as fast and wide as we will probably ever see for M/4.3, but hey, I've been wrong many times before. I would ask, what are the better alternatives? There are none, at least that I know of.

The depth of field is such on that lens you could adjust it to a fixed focus, and just stay good just by watching where you go with the steadicam, and then readjust as needed between flights.
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Old October 3rd, 2011, 07:08 AM   #28
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Good suggestion Jeff.

The lens is on it's way just in time for Saturdays wedding. It will be my first wedding with the GH2.
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Old October 3rd, 2011, 09:29 AM   #29
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Congrats Tim. I mentioned fixed focus, but as I recall Gary H used continuous auto focus for his clip, didn't he? It really works well, but you'll have to test it in lighting similar to what you'll be exposed to, I guess. Good luck, you'll like the lens, I'm sure.
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Old October 3rd, 2011, 11:46 AM   #30
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Re: 12mm a winner for sure

Does anyone know how well the new 12mm works when adapted to a follow-focus?

In one review that I read, it mentioned that the focus-by-wire adjusted differently depending on how fast you turned the focus ring. When using a follow-focus (which isn't the most necessary thing in the world on a wide lens, but it can be useful), it is important to have consistently repeatable focus adjustments. I understand that some focus-by-wire systems are pretty consistent once you get them set up (and don't turn the camera off between takes, etc.), but if there's variability from shot-to-shot, this diminishes the usefulness of the lens for "cinema" applications.
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