MartinM's reviews

  • Olympus 25mm f/2.8 Zuiko Digital

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    Small, lightweight, sharp
    hood nod included, Swiss pricing

    I have seen many lenses, from Sony, while i had a Sony Alpha. This prime lense here is really nice. Not as sharp and sure not as fast as my Minolta 35mm f1.4 is had, but certainly very good.

    I have not noticed any CA. But honestly, i use this lens indoors and for available light. For daytime i have other lenses.

    In Switzerland its a bit expensive compared to what you get.

    Edit 21.2.2009: I sold the first one i had, before switching to the E-30. I got it back for a second time. It matches my 50mm lens and makes a great indoor use value.

    reviewed November 5th, 2008 (purchased for $290)
  • Olympus 40-150mm f/4-5.6 ED Zuiko Digital

    8 out of 10 points and recommended
    Small, lightweight, sharpness, fast AF
    focal lenght

    The best kit lens i've ever seen. Sony doesn't even have a chance.

    Lightweight, fits in a small pouch. Easy to carry.

    The focal lenght could be more convenient.

    40-200 / 4.0 - 5.6 would be the ideal range
    I think this would be feasible without the need of moving to Pro.

    Anyway, the IQ is very good and i cannot complain.

    reviewed November 5th, 2008 (purchased for $129)
  • Olympus 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 ED Zuiko Digital

    8 out of 10 points and recommended
    Small, lightweight, sharpness, fast AF
    focal lenght

    why the heck Olympus did not do a 12-60 / 3.5 - 5.6. It would have been that much more convenient without big cost impact.

    Apart from this, i am very satified with the IQ of this kit lens.

    It's fast and focuses well.

    reviewed November 5th, 2008 (purchased for $129)
  • Olympus 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    Sharp, fast AF, good focal length
    a bit heavy, old lens cap

    Noting to complain at all. This lens first perfect on my e520. Although it does not support contrast AF, the way i use it, OVF, does not matter.

    Its really sharp and the IQ is outstanding.

    Compared to the 12-60 it is very affordable adn offers almost the same focal length

    The weight and the lens cap is something that i don't like.

    reviewed November 12th, 2008 (purchased for $310)
  • Olympus 70-300mm f/4-5.6 ED Zuiko Digital

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    incredible focal length, image quality, build, weight
    af hunts in low light conditions

    I already have the double zoom kit and found this one in a second hand store. has a scratch on the lens hood. For 242 USD a truly affordable lenses.

    The focal length is incredible. 600mm !! And only 600g weight. Thats really good.

    The image quality is excellent. All the way from 70 to 300mm.

    I noticed that the autofous tends to hunt when used at low light. Specially starting at 200mm. From 70-200 the AF is fast and accurate.

    The e520 IS does a prefect work. However, at 300mm from time to time your shot is wasted cause IS fails.

    Overall, a 9. No 10 cause i believe the IQ of the 50-200 is ways better.

    IF you are looking for a well suitable telephoto lens and you are aware of some weaknesses this lens has, you will be very happy.

    I used the lens mainly for airplane spotting, for which it fits very well.

    reviewed December 9th, 2008 (purchased for $242)
  • Olympus 12-60mm f/2.8-4 ED SWD Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Sharpness, versatile focal lenght, fast focus
    Weight, F4 @60mm, price, Slow AF in LV, tends to hunt in LL

    No doubt, this is the killer lens. I found one for 750$, 2 month old. That was the end for my ZD 14-54.

    The whole lens adds another 100g of weight in comparision to the 14-54, however, the image quality and the versatile focal lenght of 12 to 60mm makes it truly worth.

    The price here in Switzerland is so incredible high, roughly 1500$, that it was a no brainer, till i found the LNIB one ;)

    Get it if you can afford it or if you have a lucky hand to find a used one.

    Edit: Some drawbacks from my earlier review.
    - TheAF in LiveView Mode is slower than the 14-54 II. SWD does not give a benefit.
    - In low light situation it can miss the focus.

    Edit 9.5.09: Much better with E-30 FW 1.1

    I have it on my E-620. Well balanced, tack sharp, fast AF makes this to one of the most versatil lenses of Olympus with superior image quality.

    reviewed December 11th, 2008 (purchased for $750)
  • Olympus 50-200mm f/2.8-3.5 ED SWD Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Compact size, Image Quality, AF Speed
    Price

    Difficult to say something, when almost everything is outstanding.

    The lens size is ways smaller than the Canon 70-200/2.8 IS USM and the weight is significantly less too.

    The image quality is outstanding. I cannot say anything about the TopPro Lenses but this one is great.

    The only issue i have, is the price tag. It left a huge hole in my pouch. I was lucky to get a used one. Here in Switzerland the best price you can get is 1800 USD.

    reviewed January 10th, 2009 (purchased for $950)
  • Olympus 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 II Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Sharp, fast AF, CDAF support, weight, Closest focus distance, price
    none

    After having issues with my 12-60 SWD on my E-30 i decided to switch to the 14-54 II. I already owned the 14-54 Mk1 previsouly and i was happy. The 12-60 was an improvement over the old 14-54.

    On the E-30 the 12-60 looses AF speed in LV and hunts in low light. This lens here does solve this perfectly.

    The focus distance of 22cm is almost the length of the lens. A bit hard to get the light on the subject, but perfect to do some nice macro shots.

    CDAF is fully suported, fast and accurate.

    Only 430g weight is perfect to carry around.

    I haven't found any difference in the IQ between the 12-60 and this lens.

    The price in Europe for the 12-60 is so exagerated that buying this lens, you can even afford to get a 50F2

    With the money i got for my 12-60 i was able to get a LNIB 50mm and an LNIB EC-14 + this nice lens of course.

    The 14-54 II matches my day to day needs in terms of focal length. I don't miss the 12mm of the 12-60. For panorama i would prefer wider anyway. I prefer a dedicated lens to that.

    it is an improvement over the 14-42 and as good as the 12-60 SWD

    The SWD speed is IMHO no argument for this focal length. SWD advantages comes into play when talking about the telephoto and fast moving targets.

    From my side -> highly recommended

    reviewed March 2nd, 2009 (purchased for $600)
  • Olympus 50mm f/2 Zuiko Digital Macro

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Small, lightweight, extremly sharp
    none

    I have the lens now for 5 days. In terms of sharpness, this is the best lens I've ever seen so far. Or at least as good as my Minolta 35/2.0

    Well built, light, small. You can carry it with you in the pouch of your jacket.

    Well worth the money.

    In comparison to the Minolta 35/2 were the prices are around 800 USD, this one here is a bargain ;)

    If you find it at a reasonable price, get it!

    reviewed March 2nd, 2009 (purchased for $325)
  • Olympus 18-180mm f/3.5-6.3 Zuiko Digital

    8 out of 10 points and recommended
    Versatile focal lenght, weight
    Hunts in low light, wide angle

    I had a chance to test the lens. No, i have not bought it. I have enough other lenses, so i won't get this one.

    I tested it on E-30 and E-620.

    I compare the lens with my Sony DT 18-250 / 3.5 -6.3
    This makes sense because it's well comparable

    The image quality is surprisingly good. Not perfect, when cropped.

    With the focal lenght of 180mm it has an excellent reach and the 6.3 at the long end are not an issue while outdoor and sunny wheather. ISO100-200. With covered skies i change directly to ISO400. Nothing special. I had to do this on the Sony too.

    The wide angle is not available. No problem for a walk around lens, but when you want some landscape panorama fotography, you'll need to change lens. I found the 9-18mm match perfect.

    CA, yes in some situations is found them. Dramatic? no.

    In general the lens is nicely built and well usable. But don't expect the IQ of a 12-60 / 50-200.

    I recommend this lens who is looking for a single (twin) lens solution and is not going to crop to much.

    Indoors, this lens is more or less not usable. My SAL-18-250 i had to cover indoors with a prime lens and this one you'll need to use a prime too.

    The build quality is excellent. Olympus build.

    reviewed May 10th, 2009
  • Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 ASPH LEICA D SUMMILUX

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Sharp, fast AF, CDAF support,
    Weight, Closest focus distance, price

    Probably one of the best primes i ever had.

    Tack sharp even at f1.4. Very good corner sharpness

    Zuiko 50 F2 is as good, however this one here has CDAF support, has F1.4 and is not too long for indoor shooting.

    It is no macro. 38cm focus distance is far from being macro capable.

    Distortion is well controlled.

    Large hood

    So far, worth all the money

    reviewed June 29th, 2009 (purchased for $900)
  • Panasonic 14-150mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH MEGA OIS LEICA D VARIO-ELMAR

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Focal lenght, tack sharp, CDAF support, Supersonic Motor
    Closest focus distance, price

    There is not too much negative i can say about his lens. It just a gem.

    The combination of a supersonic motor driven lens, that supports contrast autofocus and has a sharpness of the 12-60 SWD is simply great.

    Adding to this, the fact that you have a really superzoom that is not too heavy and with a outstanding sharpness at the long end, makes this a really perfect combination.

    No more lens switch, except in some occasions. At night and where more focal lenght is needed.

    There is only one drawback, maybe two.
    a. PRICE
    b. no dust and waterproof

    Apart from this, it is a perfect match

    Edit 17th January 2011:
    I have this lens now on my Olympus E-5 Body.

    Perfect match. It stabilizes the Video Recording while the IBIS is not active.
    It does not generate any noise while focusing in live view mode and it is accurate.

    reviewed July 5th, 2009 (purchased for $1,200)
  • Sony 24-105mm f/3.5-4.5 SAL-24105

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    Small, Light, Good focal lenght, price
    some vignetting

    I had this lense on my A100/200/300/700 days. I was always happy. It is a very suitable lens when you don't want to take too much equipment with you. It is certainly not a AL lens. You'll still need some addition to cover that need.

    It gives really sharp pictures on my A850. The color rendition is good. The A850 is not good if set to AWB. I strongly recommend to do it yourself. Bad WB = bad color rendition ;-)

    Yes, i admidt, on wide angle it has some light vignetting. I would say, that nor more than my Sony 18-250 used to have.

    The A850 Kit in Switzerland comes with a DxO 6.2 Elite Version (Full Release), which does effectively remove the vignetting.

    Compared to my 28-75SAM, this is a good carry on lens.

    Overall, for me as an amateur fotographer, this lens, give nice pictures, good enough to print on an 10x15cm format.

    Pro's my go for the CZ.

    reviewed May 28th, 2010 (purchased for $250)
  • Sony 28-75mm f/2.8 SAM SAL-2875

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    Weight, Size, Aperture 2.8, Wide Angle on FF
    Price, Cheap distance scale

    I bought this together with my Alpha 850. Sure its not the quality of the Zeiss 24-70 neither it has the wide angle of 24mm. It is a good standard zoom. I had the Minolta 28-75 on my A300. The 28mm were not appropriate on APS-C. On FF this is a complete different story.

    The price is insane, like lot of the Sony lenses.

    reviewed May 28th, 2010 (purchased for $900)
  • Sony 135mm f/1.8 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* SAL-135F18Z

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Aperture, IQ, solid build, perfect handling, focal length
    Price

    Not to much I can say about this lens. It is simply amazing. The IQ is outstanding and it pairs perfectly with my A850.

    A very useful focal length on full frame. good for nice portrait and even for spotting a the airport very useful

    Can be used with Sigma 1.4x APO EX DG (Non-HSM) with widest aperture at f2.8. Can't go wider as image blur

    reviewed September 4th, 2010 (purchased for $1,500)
  • Olympus 14-35mm f/2 ED SWD Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Tack sharp, silent, fast, build
    Price

    New E-5 needs a outstanding lens I said to myself and got an affordable copy with warranty here in Switzerland. Usually you don't find NIB copies for that price.

    The sharpness is impressive. Even wide open it remains tack sharp.

    The autofocus on the E-5 is accurate and fast. It has slight back focus, but on the E-5, this can be adjusted by adding +3.

    It is heavy, yes, but having had my A850 and the Vario-Sonnar ZA24-70/2.8 these 900gr are no big deal.

    The build is solid. Waterproof for sure. The Zeiss wasn't, I have to mention here for the same amount of money.

    Thinking about the comparision to my FF equipment, the 28-70mm are not too limiting. of course, 12-35/2.0 would have been better, but I can live with it.

    This is definitely the right lens if you want to do AL and not to be constantly switching to the primes.

    reviewed November 29th, 2010 (purchased for $1,900)
  • Olympus 35-100mm f/2 Pro ED Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Tack sharp, AF very reliable, ecellent built
    heavy, very expensive, a bit front heavy

    As a former owner of the Sony 70-200G SSM mounted on the A850, this is the system I can compare this lense here.

    FOV is equivalent to the 70-200G.

    Build:
    Outstanding and waterproof built. While the 70-200G is not even drip prove for 2200 bucks

    IQ: This lens is really tack sharp throughout the frame. The 70-200G generally was soft at f2.8, this one here is tack sharp at f2.0

    I haven't really noticed any drawback in comparision to the SSM of Sony or the 50-200SWD which I own. The AF is fast and accurate. 9 out of 10 shots are perfect.

    Tele Converters are excellent. 1.4x and 2.0x can be used.

    70-200 (140-400) with f4 is certainly a an excellent match.

    Without any doubt I can say that this is the lens which will replace my 50-200SWD and team up with my 14-35 SWD.

    reviewed March 25th, 2011
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Sharp, Fast AF, Weather Sealing, Compact Size
    Price

    I bought this lens toghether with my 5D Mark II. I used it at the Airshow just a few days after.

    The results were impressive. Very sharp even at 300mm.

    I was soaked by the rain in the morning, walking around with the lens. The sealing had no issue.

    I love the size of this zoom. I can easily fit it in my jacket pocket.

    A pitty that Canon genuine externders cannot be used. But as test showed, the Kenko 1.4x DGX does deliver better IQ anyway. So why not to get that one.

    For the IQ I reduced to 9, cause my 100mm L Macro is sharper.

    reviewed June 22nd, 2011 (purchased for $1,900)
  • Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    IQ, AF Speed, IS, weather sealing
    none i can think of

    I used to have the Olympus 50 F2 Macro, which dpreview rates as the best IQ they ever saw. Now actually this one is not better, but at least as good.

    The IS is a real help when taking movies with the 5D2 and of course when taking pictures on portrait distances.

    Due to its really fast AF, this lens is a very appealing dual purpose lens too. It can do excellent macro aswell as serve as a general medium telephoto prime.

    The 135L and the 200L2.8 have no sealing. This one has a full weather sealing. I'ld wish my other primes would have a sealing.

    Simply worth the price tag you pay.

    reviewed July 29th, 2011 (purchased for $1,050)
  • Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Sharp, Fast AF, Compact Size
    No IS, no sealing

    Very nice addition to my low light prime park. This prime is sharp and fast focussing. Addtionally I can add the Extender 2x II to enhance my daylight reach of my 70-300L to 400 F5.6 without loss of IQ or AF speed.
    The only drawback is the lack of IS and weather sealing.
    A Mark 3 with the IS and sealing of the 100L would be really cool.

    reviewed July 29th, 2011 (purchased for $750)
  • Canon EF 28mm f/1.8 USM

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    Fast and accurate AF, light, very good IQ at f2.0
    no hood, no leather case

    On my 5D Mark II this lens is the total opposite of the Ef 50 1.4. It is fast and accurate. Even if at f1.8 it tends to be a tad soft, at f2.0 this one is really good. I have no clue how so many people complain about this lens. I had the 50mm and that one was really not good. No 10, because the 70-200L IS II USM is sharper. ;-)

    reviewed February 3rd, 2012 (purchased for $450)
  • Olympus 150mm f/2 Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    F2.0, weather sealing, IQ, size, weight
    nothing really

    Now, thats my lens. The 300 f/2.8 I can get for free when I need it.

    Stellar performance. 300mm of reach with an aperture of F2 is really cool. Not speaking about the price I paid for.

    After adjusting the Front-focus on my E-5, putting in -4, this lens performs outstanding. IQ is fantastic and AF is fast an accurate.

    It size makes it very portable. I can put it side by side in my Lowepro Fastpack 350, with 12-60 and 50-200

    I still got to test the EC-20. The EC-14 and the EX-25 is perfect match.

    Gives you a great telemacro lens too.

    Works well, but not as fast on the E-M5. Tested it on that one too.

    reviewed September 15th, 2012 (purchased for $1,300)
  • Olympus 300mm f/2.8 Zuiko Digital

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    600mm, f/2.8, weather sealing, IQ, size
    price, weight

    This is a really nice lens. An incredible reach paired with sharpness. A dream.

    IQ and build are outstanding.

    Weight is a topic. I had it on a hike of about an hour hanging around my neck. Not exactly what you would like to take for a long walk.

    The price tag is ridiculous high. I will never ever be able to afford it. I rent it ;-)

    reviewed September 5th, 2012
  • Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

    8 out of 10 points and recommended
    Accurate and decent fast AF, IS, focal length, decent sharp results
    no hood, no leather case

    I have this lens on my 5D Mark II.

    It delivers a very usable focal range. Nothing similar available as L lens, which is a pitty.

    IS does well and image quality is very good for its price. I feel that 90% of the shooters out there would not notice the difference between the 24-105L and a 28-135 in terms of IQ.

    I have really seen worse lenses than this one. Who is going to complain for that price.

    Very usable for filming too!

    Only drawback is the lens hood which is not included and need to be purchased separately.

    reviewed April 4th, 2012 (purchased for $400)
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    Lightweight, Size, Build Quality, AF Speed, FTM, Zoom Lock
    No weather seal

    I have purchased this lens to have something small and portable with me on my business travels.

    The IQ of this lens is really good on my 5D Mark II. I see some softness wide open at 300mm. But this can be avoided by raising a bit the ISO, which on a 5D2 is zero problem.

    The lens is fast focusing and it has FTM. Ring-Type USM!

    It is build very solid and gives a very good feeling. Like holding an L-Lens.

    The lens extends/retracts by itself due to the weight of the tubus. No issue once you get used to it.

    Zoom ring goes firmly but smooth.

    The price I paid for a MINT lens is very nice. If I had to buy a new one, I would buy the 70-300L as it features weather sealing. For second hand, no issue.

    I think it is a very underrated gem, at least for me on FF. I have no experience on crop.

    reviewed April 10th, 2012 (purchased for $550)
  • Olympus 7-14mm f/4 Zuiko Digital

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Wide, excellent IQ, almsot without disortion
    none so far

    I have tested several wide angel lenses

    Sony Zeiss 16-35
    Canon EF 16-35 II
    Canon EF 17-40

    and among these, the Zuiko is the best lens, followed by the Zeiss. Canon has really no wide angle that has usable corners nor an acceptable sharpness wide open.

    This is really a very nice lens and it does almost not have a disortion at the wide end.

    Wide open, very far corners become a bit softer. But nothing really I could complain of. Paired with my 14-35, this is THE combo.

    reviewed October 18th, 2012 (purchased for $1,100)
  • Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Tack sharp, design, AF speed, IQ wide open
    prica tag

    I had now several standard zooms on Canon. All of them left much to deserve wide open.

    When comparing with the Zuiko 14-35 and the Sony Zeiss ZA 24-70, no Canon standard lens was close to them.

    Today I can positively remark, this Canon 24-70 made my day. It is sharp wide open and the focus is perfectly fast

    The new design with the smaller hood is outstanding. The new designed zoom and focusing rings are perfect to handle even with gloves.

    The missing IS might be the only drawback. But keeping in mind the ISO performance of my 5D III, the IS is no issue. For filming yes, to have IS is better.

    The new 24-70L IS that will show up shortly, might be a very good alternative if you don't need f/2.8

    reviewed December 3rd, 2012 (purchased for $2,200)
  • Olympus 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro M.Zuiko Digital ED

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    IQ, AF, Sealing
    None really

    Awesome lens. Perfect for my OMD E-M1. Worth every penny.

    reviewed February 19th, 2015 (purchased for $1,440)