Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Wide Angle vs. Fisheye - Help Needed


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 shaky

shaky

    Starfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 26 May 2012 - 03:16 AM

Hi, I need some help deciding between a wide angle lens (Olympus 9-18mm) and a fisheye (Lumix 8mm) for my Olympus EPL 2. I have been thinking about this for a couple of weeks and am changing my mind almost every day.

This is what I would like to use it for: My next trip will hopefully be to Sipadan (so mostly turtles, reef sharks, etc) but I am also hoping that I'll be able to do the shark dive in Fiji or even humpbacks in Tonga at some point. In addition I would like to give close up wide angle a shot as well. I would be nice if I could also use the lens for topside photography, but guess the fisheye optic is a bit limiting here (though i have seen a few really cool fisheye images recently).

I read somewhere that the fisheye lens is a lot harder to use. Is that true?

Any help making that decision would be most appreciated....

#2 Alex_Tattersall

Alex_Tattersall

    Great Hammerhead

  • Industry
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 867 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:UK

Posted 26 May 2012 - 04:00 AM

I'd probably go with the zoom. The Panasonic fisheye is very wide!
www.flickr.com/photos/alextattersall

www.nauticamuk.com
www.uwvisions.com
Exclusive official importer of Nauticam products into the UK and Ireland

#3 chris_l

chris_l

    Wolf Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 125 posts

Posted 26 May 2012 - 05:14 AM

I have the 9-18 with the Zen dome and I like it.
I have considered the FE lense, but I'm going to wait and see on the whole EM-5 thing before buying another port for the oly epl2 housing.
On land, the 9-18 is amazing. It gives the same view as the tokina 12-24DX but it's about 1/3 the size and weight.

You could also look at the panasonic 7-14. It's a bit wider and generally considered a better lense than the 9-18.
I went for the 9-18 for a couple or reason, price and also the fact that I could use the 9-18 & 14-42 in the same Zen port with the same zoom ring.

#4 shaky

shaky

    Starfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 26 May 2012 - 07:59 AM

Thanks for the responses. Now I have another lens to look at, which doesn't make any easier :-)

I am really considering the Panasonic 7-14 right now. Chris, do you actually use the 14-42 in the zen dome? I am thinking that if I use the 14-42, I would like to have more macro capabilities (i.e. use original oly dome + wet lens), or is changing domes to difficult?

Guess it all comes down to money (as usual). I probably pay $500 for the dome either way, its then the lens that's about $450 more.....on the other hand if I actually make it to the humpbacks (or larger sharks/mantas) I probably really want to have the additional 2mm.

#5 holloways

holloways

    Moray Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 75 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 26 May 2012 - 12:21 PM

I have the same question. I'm 1 week away from buying a Panasonic GX1/Nauticam housing and all the stuff that goes with it. Now I'm trying to figure out the lens situation (I think we are talking about the exact same lenses). Advise welcome.

I like shooting schools of fish - not so much into nudies but I do like small stuff too. I am trying to keep it small. Tropical diving - always requiring multiple flights to get to.


RE: wide: I'm leaning towards a Panasonic 7-14mm lens. The thing is bloody expensive ($900-1000+/- for just the lens) and requires a 6" dome port (the size of which concerns me since I'm trying to stay very small). Would it be better to buy the Olympus 9-18mm wide-angle lens (in a 4" dome port) or the 8 mm pancake instead or the 7-14???? Are there other wide combinations I should know about that wouldn't require such a large dome port (maybe I'm making too much of the size thing)?

RE: Macro: I'm leaning towards a diaptor for now, passing on the existing 45 mm lens and probably waiting for the new 60mm lens to get released. Is that a good idea? If so - which brand or features of diaptors do you all like? Strength??? +5 vs +10??? . Same question re: macro - Are there other macro combinations I should know about?

Finally re: the kit lens: - I've heard kit lens aren't typically all that great (although I know nothing about the Panasonic 14-42 kit lens - bad or good). Would it make more sense to skip the kit lens altogether and instead get a nice wide and macro lens to start? The price of equipping the kit lens and a diaptor would basically equal the cost of the 45 mm macro and associated ports.


Thanks so much. It is all so baffling!










Thanks for the responses. Now I have another lens to look at, which doesn't make any easier :-)

I am really considering the Panasonic 7-14 right now. Chris, do you actually use the 14-42 in the zen dome? I am thinking that if I use the 14-42, I would like to have more macro capabilities (i.e. use original oly dome + wet lens), or is changing domes to difficult?

Guess it all comes down to money (as usual). I probably pay $500 for the dome either way, its then the lens that's about $450 more.....on the other hand if I actually make it to the humpbacks (or larger sharks/mantas) I probably really want to have the additional 2mm.



#6 chris_l

chris_l

    Wolf Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 125 posts

Posted 27 May 2012 - 07:09 AM

Thanks for the responses. Now I have another lens to look at, which doesn't make any easier :-)

I am really considering the Panasonic 7-14 right now. Chris, do you actually use the 14-42 in the zen dome? I am thinking that if I use the 14-42, I would like to have more macro capabilities (i.e. use original oly dome + wet lens), or is changing domes to difficult?

Guess it all comes down to money (as usual). I probably pay $500 for the dome either way, its then the lens that's about $450 more.....on the other hand if I actually make it to the humpbacks (or larger sharks/mantas) I probably really want to have the additional 2mm.


Yes, I use the 14-42 behind the Zen dome. The 14-42 is a very versatile lense. My complaint with it, is that it is not as sharp at the long end.
I have not tried it behind the original Oly port, maybe I will. But, I do like the convenience of not having to change ports. I've only changed the port once, to put the Zen on and then never touched it again. I've used it on 2 dive trips so far.
Back to the 14-42. It did well at the shorter focal lengths. What I need to do is really test it at different focal lengths with different apertures and come up with an acceptable range.
To further complicate things, I now have the oly 45mm/f1.8 lens. It is very sharp. I intend to try it out behind the Zen dome. On land it seems to work fine, need to get in the pool and try it out before my next trip in July. I know it's not a macro lense, but the sharpness of this lens is very nice, so should allow for good cropped pictures.

On my last trip after seeing the results of the 14-42 at the long end, I pretty much used the 9-18 the last few days of the trip.
If the 45mm works out, I have a feeling I'll be using it and the 9-18.
The 14-42 is not terrible, just not as good as the 9-18 and if I'm not using it at the long end, might as well have the extra width of the 9-18 available.

#7 chris_l

chris_l

    Wolf Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 125 posts

Posted 27 May 2012 - 07:11 AM

I've read good things about the panasonic 14-45.
If I were going panasonic & nauticam, I'd think that would be a great, versatile combo.

the pany 14-45 is considered better than the 14-42 from either pany or oly.

I just looked at the nauticam site and it doesn't look like they have support for the 14-45.
It might work behind the same port for the 14-42, but you'd be on your own coming up with the zoom gear.

Edited by chris_l, 27 May 2012 - 07:17 AM.


#8 holloways

holloways

    Moray Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 75 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 27 May 2012 - 10:38 AM

Thank you - this is very helpful.

Hate to sound so lame - but what makes one lens better than another - particularly when they are so close in numbers (14-42 vs 14-45)? Is there some "number" or rating that is available to the clueless folks like me - so we can figure this out ourselves? Quit laughing!






I've read good things about the panasonic 14-45.
If I were going panasonic & nauticam, I'd think that would be a great, versatile combo.

the pany 14-45 is considered better than the 14-42 from either pany or oly.

I just looked at the nauticam site and it doesn't look like they have support for the 14-45.
It might work behind the same port for the 14-42, but you'd be on your own coming up with the zoom gear.


Edited by holloways, 27 May 2012 - 10:40 AM.


#9 chris_l

chris_l

    Wolf Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 125 posts

Posted 27 May 2012 - 11:02 AM

Thank you - this is very helpful.

Hate to sound so lame - but what makes one lens better than another - particularly when they are so close in numbers (14-42 vs 14-45)? Is there some "number" or rating that is available to the clueless folks like me - so we can figure this out ourselves? Quit laughing!


I'm no expert, but from what I've read, the 14-45 is considered sharper.
you can look at some of the lens test sites and decide for yourself. I've never used that particular lens, but it is considered the best "kit" lens ever offered on any micro 4/3 camera.
It has nothing to do with it being 45mm vs 42mm on the long end.
Just considered sharper.

http://www.dpreview....cGF1/page19.asp

#10 Alex_Mustard

Alex_Mustard

    The Doctor

  • Super Mod
  • 8375 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Peterborough

Posted 27 May 2012 - 01:15 PM

I did my first dive today with the 8mm and was very impressed:

GOZ12_am_10044.jpg

I'll post some more pix in a new thread - so as not to hijack this one.

Not tried the wide angle yet.

Alex

Alexander Mustard - www.amustard.com - www.magic-filters.com
Nikon D4 (Subal housing). Nikon D7100 (Subal housing). Olympus EPL-5 (Nauticam housing).


#11 Alex_Mustard

Alex_Mustard

    The Doctor

  • Super Mod
  • 8375 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Peterborough

Posted 28 May 2012 - 12:42 PM

Here are some more fisheye shots - this time with 8mm and Oly E-PM1:

GOZ12_am_10884.jpg

GOZ12_am_10956.jpg

Alex

Alexander Mustard - www.amustard.com - www.magic-filters.com
Nikon D4 (Subal housing). Nikon D7100 (Subal housing). Olympus EPL-5 (Nauticam housing).


#12 Moscht

Moscht

    Sea Wasp

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

Posted 28 May 2012 - 02:38 PM

Hi,

I am in a similar situation planning to get the Nauticam GX1 housing.

Regarding the wide angle I will go for the 9-18 mm Olympus since it can use filters for topside photography and the 4'' port is quite compact.

It is also interesting that Nauticam offers a 67mm Adaptor for this dome, but I found no additional information about this. In my opinion it only makes sense to use it with macro wetlenses and standard zoom lenses since the 9-18mm might vignette.

Maybe this adapter allows a setup where a true 28mm (ful frame) wide angle perspective and macro can be used on the same dive.

Does anyone have experience with panasonic standard zooms (14-42 or 14-45) behind this dome and macro wetlenses?

Sorry, I do not want to hijack this wide angle thread but the 4'' dome might be interesting for other lenses too.

regards

Martin

#13 matt215

matt215

    Sting Ray

  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 200 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Franklin, TN

Posted 28 May 2012 - 02:46 PM

I did the shark dive in Fiji. I had a canon 17-40L but wish I had brought my fisheye. The sharks come very close. We were lucky enough to have 2 tiger sharks show up, and I had several good shots that I couldn't use because the tail was cut out of the image. I brought my fisheye to Fiji, just never dove with it. Bad decision on my part.
Canon 5D mk2, Ikelite housing, Ikelite 125 strobes, 17-40 mm 4.0 L, 100 mm, 24-150 mm L, 100-400 mm 5.6 L
Visit My Website
Visit My Website

#14 shaky

shaky

    Starfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 29 May 2012 - 07:42 AM

To sum it up: I probably want to have a wide angle lens and a fisheye (ideally both working with the same dome). Downside is that after buying that setup I probably won't be able to afford the trip to Fiji/Tonga :-)

My Sipadan trip has been postponed, so I do have a bit more time to think about how to combine the right equipment and maximize time spent underwater....Thanks again for your responses, that has been helpful indeed.

#15 holloways

holloways

    Moray Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 75 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 29 May 2012 - 09:15 AM

Hi Martin
After much angst - I have pretty much decided on the 8mm fish eye ($650) and 4.33" port dome ($480) and the 14-42 kit lens / Nauticam gear ($150) /port #72 ($270) and a +10 Subsea diopter ($225) with a Nauticam 67mm adapter ($120). I would have purchased the 7-14 WA lens - but the 6" dome port looks so big it sort of defeated the whole purpose of a small form factor (lens/port/gear about $1500 fully equipped). I haven't seen the 6" dome yet - so I may change my mind... but this is my plan for a Panasonic GX1 in a Nauticam housing. I din't hear great things about the 9-18 lens.

I looked into the Olympus 12-50 mm ($500), but was advised that the macro mode on the 12-50 mm lens locks the focal length at 43mm, so the macro performance with a diopter will be about the same as with the 14-42, and you lose the ability to zoom.

What is the function of the 67mm adaptor for the 4" dome?

Hope this helps

-----


Hi,

I am in a similar situation planning to get the Nauticam GX1 housing.

Regarding the wide angle I will go for the 9-18 mm Olympus since it can use filters for topside photography and the 4'' port is quite compact.

It is also interesting that Nauticam offers a 67mm Adaptor for this dome, but I found no additional information about this. In my opinion it only makes sense to use it with macro wetlenses and standard zoom lenses since the 9-18mm might vignette.

Maybe this adapter allows a setup where a true 28mm (ful frame) wide angle perspective and macro can be used on the same dive.

Does anyone have experience with panasonic standard zooms (14-42 or 14-45) behind this dome and macro wetlenses?

Sorry, I do not want to hijack this wide angle thread but the 4'' dome might be interesting for other lenses too.

regards

Martin



#16 Moscht

Moscht

    Sea Wasp

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

Posted 29 May 2012 - 01:34 PM

Hi holloways,

Lens decisions are not easy for this camera. :-)

I think the 8mm fisheye should be the best option for underwater use, but I like the 9-18 mm focal length for climbing/landscape use, so for me it looks like a more viable option especially regarding costs.

The kit lens, flat port and a subsea diopter is also planned, but I am not yet sure if the +5 or +10 version is better. unfortunately the panasonic kit does not not allow a high magnification, (due to dpreview or photozone) so the +10 makes more sense but the working distance is really short. Even though it is expensive the reefnet swing adapter is my choice since handling will be more effective under water.

Unfortunately there is no port where the macro switch of the 12-50 can be used.

I was quite surprised when I saw this 67mm adapter for the 4'' dome port. It would be really interesting to hear if someone used it successfully for macro work.

On some dives it could be nice to have both a mild wide angle and a macro lens.

regards

Martin


Hi Martin
After much angst - I have pretty much decided on the 8mm fish eye ($650) and 4.33" port dome ($480) and the 14-42 kit lens / Nauticam gear ($150) /port #72 ($270) and a +10 Subsea diopter ($225) with a Nauticam 67mm adapter ($120). I would have purchased the 7-14 WA lens - but the 6" dome port looks so big it sort of defeated the whole purpose of a small form factor (lens/port/gear about $1500 fully equipped). I haven't seen the 6" dome yet - so I may change my mind... but this is my plan for a Panasonic GX1 in a Nauticam housing. I din't hear great things about the 9-18 lens.

I looked into the Olympus 12-50 mm ($500), but was advised that the macro mode on the 12-50 mm lens locks the focal length at 43mm, so the macro performance with a diopter will be about the same as with the 14-42, and you lose the ability to zoom.

What is the function of the 67mm adaptor for the 4" dome?

Hope this helps

-----



#17 Draq

Draq

    Wolf Eel

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 168 posts

Posted 30 May 2012 - 04:04 PM

In case it is of interest, Nauticam will do a custom gear for the 14-45 for $200 vs. $150 for a standard gear.

I am very fond of the 7-14, but one factor to consider if price and system size is an issue is that the 4" dome will work for the 9-18 and the 14-42 Panasonic and 14-45 Panasonic and I think even the 14-42 Oly lenses. As far as I know, the 6" dome is used solely for the 7-14.

I could see a very nice system being:

8mm Fisheye
7-14 or 9-18
14-42 or 14-45 (I like the 14-45) in a the 4" semi-dome
60mm Macro (when out this summer and whenever a port is available)

I am also intrigued to try and use the 45mm 1.8 Oly lens if I can figure out which port would be best. It is a very nice lens.

And last, I think it would be fun to try and use the 14mm Panasonic lens with their wide converter, which yields a 11mm 2.5 lens that is supposedly pretty decent. I have the lens but not the converter. I saw someone say it works in the 4.3" dome designed for the 8mm fisheye.

#18 Phil Rudin

Phil Rudin

    Great White

  • Industry
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1035 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA

Posted 30 May 2012 - 04:44 PM

Regarding the Nauticam 4.33 inch ports their are two listed with different shades. I have used the port with the following lenses.

Panasonic 8mm fisheye, Olympus 12mm (killer lens), Sony NEX 16mm and Sony fisheye and W/A adapters. The Sony 16mm is a pancake so I think all of the pancakes that are not zooms would work behind this port.

I will be interested to hear what port Alex mustard used on the Olympus E-M5 housing with the 8mm fisheye. I got the impression that the ZEN ports may not mount to this new housing and that the adapter would be needed with the 170mm dome port from the past Olympus DSLR housing systems.
This would be a real shame because the Zen ports are quite good and would need to be redesigned.

Phil Rudin

Edited by Phil Rudin, 30 May 2012 - 04:46 PM.


#19 Ryan

Ryan

    Great White

  • Industry
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1052 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Fort Lauderdale, FL

Posted 31 May 2012 - 06:42 AM

I still haven't seen a housing, but based on photos I'm pretty certain that the housing has a Sea & Sea RDX Mount, and our ports aren't compatible. If the housing doesn't ship until q4 and is as expensive as JPY-USD conversions indicate it will be we won't have any adapters or redesigns high on our priority list.

We shipped a DP-100-EP dome for Panasonic 8mm to the Olympus Gozo event, and Pete Bullen has WA-100-EP. Unfortunately I don't think the DP-100-EP arrived in time... I've been watching the updates on Facebook with interest, though!

https://www.facebook...1...e=3

founder of Reef Photo & Video
manufacturer of Zen Domes

distributor of Nauticam in the Americas

 

n2theblue at reefphoto.com