ssj_george's reviews

  • Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 ASPH LUMIX G

    10 out of 10 points and recommended
    Light, small, very good performance, very good build quality
    vignetting wide open

    I have it mounted on a GF1 and it makes a perfect light and small package.

    Image quality is almost flawless. Shoot at f/2.8 for sharpest images and also at f/4 for eliminating the vignetting. I may have said that the lens is sharper at f/2.8 but you'll be surprised at the image quality at f/1.7!

    Its focal length (40mm equivalent) makes it a perfect lens for general purpose. It is good for landscape, for street photography and its f/1.7 makes it very very good (but not perfect) for portraiture and some interior shots.

    Autofocus is excellent. Very fast. And with the genial red AF assist lamp on the GF1 autofocusing in low light is easy.

    Manual focusing ring feels great. It is addictive using it.

    As I said the only flaw is the vignetting wide open at f/1.7 to around f/2. You can eliminate vignetting at f/4 or you can just correct it later in post processing (something very easy and 100% efficient with a good software).

    Falling in love with this lens is inevitable. Highly recommended when looking for something like this!

    reviewed June 15th, 2010 (purchased for $490)
  • Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS

    8 out of 10 points and recommended
    Light, relatively small, good focal range, good image quality, excellent pricing, stabilization is good, good macro capabilities
    vignetting wide open, apperture makes it restrictive for low light use

    I really like this lens. There are some strong points and some weak points.

    It is a very light lens for its focal range and also very compact. It makes it very easy to carry it around.

    I really like the focal range which covers serious tele range and also has a respectable wide range.

    The overall image quality is very good. It is not the sharpest lens but its resolution is very very good and related to its price the quality is excellent.

    Stabilization works great and helps eliminate camera shake most of the times. Just one recommendation here: When half-pressing the shutter wait for a couple of seconds (if you have the time) because I feel that the stabilization kicks in after a second or so. This is my opinion and haven't done any lab tests to prove this.

    The macro magnification is very good (x34) and this adds an extra strength to this lens. Try shooting an insect and you'll be surprised by the result (remember stand 1.1m away from the subject and zoom out completely at 250mm for maximum magnification).

    Two weak points:
    1. High vignetting when shooting wide open. Stop down at f/8 to completely eliminate the vignetting. But post processing makes it very easy to remove the shades so wide open isn't bad after all.
    2. The autofocus may be a bit slow at times and especially when shooting street or action shots autofocus can spoil the shot.

    reviewed June 15th, 2010 (purchased for $245)
  • Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

    9 out of 10 points and recommended
    light, excellent price, compact, excellent optical quality
    plastic and cheap construction, a bit soft wide open

    This lens is probably the best bargain for its image capabilities. Relative to the money you spend, image quality is excellent. You may want to shoot at f/2.8 for sharper images (but when f/1.8 is needed the lens isn't at all bad).

    Here I will describe some weak points and may seem that they are a lot, but I really believe that when someone doesn't want to spend more on such a lens this is the perfect lens to get.

    The weak points:
    1. Plastic feel, manual focusing ring not the best. This does not affect performance so if you are cool with that (I am) that is fine!
    2. Autofocus may be slow when lighting is bad. This poses some problems. The best thing to do in these situations is turn on the MF mode and manual focus the lens...

    reviewed June 15th, 2010 (purchased for $80)