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GH4 lens recommandation

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Hello,

 

I would like to move to the GH4 with a Nauticam housing.

 

Someone recommend to me the panasonic 7-14 and the 45 for the macro.

 

What are your advices on this subjects?

 

Regards

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I think the 7-14mm is a great lens, and I love the 60mm Olympus macro - not tried the 45mm.

 

Perhaps the 8mm would be better for CFWA - but it all depends on what you want to photograph!

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Okay, I asked the same question before and people recommend the 12-50mm and it does macro. So which lens is the essential one to get for GH4?

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12-50 would only be 24mm FF equiv at the widest end. Not wide enough IMO.

 

I'd go with exactly what the OP said. Unless you wanted a fisheye instead of the 7-14mm.

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I think 12-50 is amazingly versatile, especially in the Nauticam port where you can access the macro mode.

 

My kit for micro four thirds would be:

 

Panasonic 8mm Fisheye for Close Focus Wide Angle

Panasonic 7-14 for Pelagics, Skittish Wide Angle

Olympus 12-50, Midrange and Macro

Olympus 60mm, Real Macro

 

I'd also carry Olympus 12mm /2 and 12-40 for topside shooting, but am not sure that I'd use them underwater.

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What would be the best lens between the Panasonic 8mm and the Panasonic 7-14mm for wreck exterior and interior/penetration photo and video? Any thoughts?

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Based on the research I have done, for starter set up, 12-50mm is the lens to get, but use the nautiam 60mm macro port. The 60mm macro port has 67mm thread so with 24mm of the lens, you can attach wide angle lens like point and shoot set up. I use an Opteka .45x lens on my Panasonic LX-7 (which has 24mm wide end as well). The Opteka help making the angle wider but not fish eye, there is always an improvise way to use an on land 0.3x lens for underwater use. Using the 60mm macro port also give you flexibility should you decide to get the 60mm macro lens later like Ryan mentioned. The 60mm macro port also allow you to manual focus.

 

To use the 12-50mm lens on the 60mm macro port, you need to get the zoom gear, which can be purchase from Italy, and in my case, I found the 3D design online and have a local 3D printing service print the gear for me for about $50.

 

I haven't get my GH4 yet as I'm still waiting to see if there is new camera coming out soon (keeping an eye on the Panasonic LX-8 right now). But if I ended up with the GH4, the above set up would be the way I plan on going, and it should cost around $5000 in total.

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Based on the research I have done, for starter set up, 12-50mm is the lens to get, but use the nautiam 60mm macro port. The 60mm macro port has 67mm thread so with 24mm of the lens, you can attach wide angle lens like point and shoot set up. I use an Opteka .45x lens on my Panasonic LX-7 (which has 24mm wide end as well). The Opteka help making the angle wider but not fish eye, there is always an improvise way to use an on land 0.3x lens for underwater use. Using the 60mm macro port also give you flexibility should you decide to get the 60mm macro lens later like Ryan mentioned. The 60mm macro port also allow you to manual focus.

 

To use the 12-50mm lens on the 60mm macro port, you need to get the zoom gear, which can be purchase from Italy, and in my case, I found the 3D design online and have a local 3D printing service print the gear for me for about $50.

 

I haven't get my GH4 yet as I'm still waiting to see if there is new camera coming out soon (keeping an eye on the Panasonic LX-8 right now). But if I ended up with the GH4, the above set up would be the way I plan on going, and it should cost around $5000 in total.

I am not sure I see a 60 port but there is a 65.

However if you intend to use a camera like this like a point and shoot with wet lenses and especially if you want to take video you are better off with the macro 35 port and the 14-42 zoom lens that has optical stabilizer. The port has a 67mm thread to add wet lenses and I know someone that has attached an Inon UWL-H100 to the port and despite all the 'don't do it' advice the images look as good as with the Olympus 9-18 he also uses

I would argue though that if you want to shoot a camera like this like a compact you are better off waiting for the next generation compacts. The RX100 Mark III has unfortunately a 70mm max zoom otherwise it would be excellent for what you want to do and 50 mbps MP4 at 24/25 is not that bad if this is your final format

If you get something like the GH4 you need to embrace the port system or you use the camera at half the possible optical quality

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I disagree with Moses's strategy of using the 12-50 in Macro Port 65, which doesn't allow use of the lens' built in macro mode. This is a really compelling advantage, depicted here:

 

post-820-0-32533200-1402525045_thumb.jpg

 

It probably isn't the highest quality lens available, but I don't know of any lens on any other format that gives the underwater photographer this range from almost wide angle to almost macro, then with the flip of a switch pretty serious macro. For someone looking for flexibility on a dive this is hard to beat.

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I disagree with Moses's strategy of using the 12-50 in Macro Port 65, which doesn't allow use of the lens' built in macro mode. This is a really compelling advantage, depicted here:

 

attachicon.gifSMC_on_12-50.jpg

 

It probably isn't the highest quality lens available, but I don't know of any lens on any other format that gives the underwater photographer this range from almost wide angle to almost macro, then with the flip of a switch pretty serious macro. For someone looking for flexibility on a dive this is hard to beat.

Ryan the macro port has a 77mm thread. Is it possible to fit the nauticam wetmate or something similar. If that is possible then the lens is a serious contender for video with 24-100mm equivalent and use of close up lenses albeit without stabiliser

That would be something interesting for me

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The $800 12-50mm port with macro that has 77mm thread was my initial thought, but I already have a few 67mm wet lens and the Nauticam wet lens flip adapter is another $260 (http://reefphoto.com/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=117_87&products_id=6057).

 

Long story short, I found at the Olympus forum here that people have been using the $300 Macro port 65 (for the 60mm macro lens) to house their 12-50mm lens using the after market zoom gear from Italy. Yes you can't switch between the 43.5mm Macro mode of the lens while in the water, but people compensate it with Subsee +10 and zoom the lens to 50mm and get good result. in some cases people just set the lens to the 43.5mm macro mode and use it as a decent macro lens if they know they're going to do a strictly macro dive.

 

I know I'm sounding really cheap here, but personally I think a $300 lens port (combine with my existing macro wet lens) could be a starter kit instead of jumping into that $800 port + $260 flip adapter right away. And if you want serious macro, get the 60mm macro lens and you can reuse the Macro port 65.

 

Interceptor121, I'm slowly embrace the interchangeable lens system but I have to start somewhere where it's affordable to my budget first. I'm keeping an eye on the Panasonic LX-8, but if the rumored spec is right, then I have to decide if I really need 10bit 4:2:2 4K on the GH4 or the 4K LX-8 is enough. And if the LX-8 has 5-axis stabilization like the Panasonic FZ-1000 then, there is more compelling reason to still stick with point and shoot for now especially for video, provided the 1" sensor is good enough.

 

It's a waiting game at this point, good thing I don't have any dive trip until December this year to dive in West Palm so I will buy some stuffs from ReefPhotos and if I have question, will swing by the shop to figure that out.

Edited by kc_moses

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Note that the 12-50mm in macro mode is 1:1 equivalent (25mm wide). Olympus specs on this lens are wrong. There are a number of threads here that discuss this and i've checked this myself.

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Ryan diagram is correct it is 33.5mm wide in macro mode so slightly better than 1:1. If there was a way to keep the 24mm equivalent in water this would be terrific for video. My only concern is the lack of stabilisation the 12-50 is not stabilised and am not clear if the GH4 has a sensor shift stabiliser or not

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First off I do not not believe there is a right or wrong answer to lens and port choices, it is a personal choice. I am thinking along the same lines as Ryan as far as lens choices for my EM-5 which I use in a Nauticam housing. However I decided to use the same macro port 65 for both the 60mm macro lens and the 12-50mm that came with the camera (the only two lenses I have at this point) for a few reasons:

 

  • For traveling I only need only one port for both lenses.
  • With after market zoom gear on the 12-50mm in the macro 65 port, plus a +5 Subsea the macro performance at 50mm is about the same as the 12-50 using its macro switch (at 43mm).
  • Using a flip diopter holder I still have the full 12-50 zoom range when not shooting macro subjects.
  • Although the cost of a subsea and flip diopter plus the zoom gear brings it up close to buying the dedicated Nauticam port for the 12-50, I still have a port to use for the excellent 60mm macro lens.
  • I can easily remove the after market zoom gear from the 12-50 when I want to use it topside. Not that easy with the dedicated Nauticam zoom gear I believe. I use the 12-50 for almost all my topside shooting when I'm traveling.
  • When I get the Panasonic 8mm FE and 3.5inch dome my guess is that I will be using the Macro 65 port just for the 60mm lens and the 12-50 will be largely my topside lens together with a yet to be decided fast prime lens.
  • I can still use the 67mm flip diopter on the macro 65 port although I will most likely go for a more powerful diopter if I want to go really super macro.
  • That just leaves me with a somewhat redundant bit of zoom gear for the 12-50

Still tossing up about wide angle options like a 7-14 zoom

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whats the best lens for the gh4 when shooting stills and video of humans and turtles 5-10 ft away(I will be working for a dive shop shooting their customers) I will be doing macro as well on other dives, but the majority of my shooting will be 5-10 ft away. I want to make sure I dont get the problems with fisheye on video. thanks

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Just to play devil's advocate...

 

I use both the Oly 9-18mm wide and the Oly 60mm macro with the Nauticam 4" wide-angle dome. I find it a good entry level set-up that gives me both wide and macro options with the same port. (BTW, both lenses are on sale now at a $200 discount at the Olympus store).

 

For wide angle, I add a +2 diopter to the 9-18mm lens for better corner sharpness.

 

For macro, I just leave the 60mm lens on full range since focus is quite fast. I also made a $10 DIY flip diopter holder for the Nauticam CMC for super macro shooting (the original one is almost $400!).

 

As I bonus, I was able to attach the zoom gear for the 9-18mm lens on a Rokinon 7.5mm fisheye lens. This allows me to manual focus with this lens when used with the Nauticam 4.33" dome.

 

Hope this helps!

 

Happy shooting!

 

Edited by michaeltsantos

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