October 3rd is our National Holiday here in Germany. A perfect opportunity to take The Significant Other and my newly acquired (used – of course) “Nifty Fifty” for a walk into the autumnal landscape outside Nuremberg.
Last week I took the opportunity to acquire a used mZuiko 25mm F/1.2 Pro lens. As m4/3 has a crop factor of 2, this translates to a “Nifty Fifty”, a 50mm prime lens on a full frame sensor. A 50mm equivalent is a must-have, regardless of the brand you shoot or the size of your sensor.
With its versatility, you can use it for street photography, landscapes, portraits, or even beautiful close-ups. It can teach you a lot about photography. First, you have to learn to zoom with your feet. Then it allows you to play with depth of field, as almost no other lens can.
You can get deep depth of field with the whole frame in focus, you can get extremely shallow depth of field at the lowest aperture. It is also a versatile portrait lens, for those head shots with half the face in focus, but it is also wide enough for environmental portraits but also long enough for half or 3/4 length portraits.
I have always owned a “Nifty Fifty”, my first one with my analogue Olympus OM-1, later also for my Nikon APS-C bodies. After switching to Olympus m4/3, I bought a 25mm (again, this is the Nifty Fifty for m4/3 due to the crop factor) F/1.8, a tiny and remarkably sharp lens that fits perfectly on my PEN-F and that I use for my street photography.
When Olympus introduced a F/1.2 Pro version in 2016, I got a serious case of G.A.S. (gear acquisition syndrome), but stayed away because of the hefty price tag. But those awesome Pro lenses (dust- and water-proof, full metal-build) have started to appear on the used gear market. When last week I found a decent offer for a used one, I finally decided to make the splash.
The image quality is sublime, and during today’s walk I took it’s versatility to the test. Check out the photographs in this post to get the idea about the capability of this magnificent “Nifty Fifty”.
The big success were The Significant Other’s portraits, that she actually liked. Which says a lot about the quality of the lens – as this happens only once a year….maximum…;-)
A you can see in many of the above images, the bokeh of the Oly 25mm F/1.2 is awesome. I know, there are still people saying that m4/3 doesn’t have a decent shallow depth of field. And that full frame is the only way to go if you are serious about portrait photography. Well – I don’t need more than what this lens gives me. And hey, I just shot a full wedding on mirrorless m4/3. And my new “Nifty Fifty” will be an awesome addition for the next one.
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Wish you all a great Thursday!