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GH4 body + PANASONIC Leica DG Summilux 15mm F1.7 or?


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Hello,


I'm just about to buy the GH4 and am wondering what would be better for me to buy. GH4 body + the PANASONIC Leica DG Summilux 15mm F1.7 or the kitt with the 14-140mm lens?
Im a beginner and would use it mostly for video in tight spaces. The price difference is +100€ for the GH4 and 15mm F1.7 compared to the kitt. Or do you haw some other combo suggestions that fall in the same price range of 1800 € to 1950 € price range?


In the end it's my plan to sell the GH4 and get the Samsung NX1 when it gets available in my area.

Tomaž

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i would love to do shots with out of focus Background and nice bokeh. But the 14-140 mm is not that fast. And with a fast wide angle lens is it also hard to do.

I have another question i hope it's not to dumb: If i buy a Olympus m43 lens does the autofocus work on a gh4?

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i would love to do shots with out of focus Background and nice bokeh. But the 14-140 mm is not that fast. And with a fast wide angle lens is it also hard to do.

I have another question i hope it's not to dumb: If i buy a Olympus m43 lens does the autofocus work on a gh4?

​The 14-140mm is a great flexible lens. It's sharp, has pretty nice rendering and contrast and everything. But... personally I think it's a little too modern and tends to give off a slight clinical but also video look. Kinda lacks 'soul' so to say. The pancakes are pretty sweet, the 20mm f/1.7 and the 14mm f/2.5. Olympus has very sweet offerings too, and I like the character Olympus lenses give off quite a bit better, more organic with very nice rendering. Yes, they are e-native lenses, even the Olympus ones, they share the same e-mount, so in-camera settings and autofocus. With none of the Olympus lenses stabilization though, as Olympus doesn't build that into the lens, but into their camera bodies. But then again, the 14 and 20mm lenses also do not feature built-in stabilization. The closest thing to the 15mm f/1.7 Summilux might be the 17mm f/1.8 from Olympus. They're pretty similar in price. No experience with either here, so not sure which is the better performer. If you want it for tight spaces... there are the Tokina 11-16 or 11-20mm f/2.8 zoomlenses. Not as tack sharp as a prime, especially wide open, but very usable and flexible lenses I'd like to think. Could get one with a Nikon mount and cheap dummy adapter. Or a focal reducer/lens turbo. Or if you can accept the price and range the Sigma ART 18-35mm f/1.8 of course. But again, adapter needed, so no AF, full manual everything. Could be the holy grail amongst the choices though... In the end it's a tough call I guess. But you really have to be dedicated and sure of the choice for the 15mm f/1.7, because you're putting quite the constraint on your range. The 14-140mm again is just so great because it's so flexible. But if its character bothers you, then that's not really gonna work either.

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From my 95% stills, 5% video perspective, and owning (or having owned) most of the Panasonic and Olympus lens lineup, I'd say those are such completely different choices that you may not really know what lens you want/need to buy.

I had the 14-140 (version 1) lens. I also had the Olympus 14-150 superzoom. I ended up selling both - for stills shooting they simply underwhelmed compared to the primes, even at my normal viewing and printing sizes. In addition, you really need fast apertures on m4/3 to compensate for the increased depth of field and decreased high ISO performance to approach the flexibility of a larger format camera.

The Panasonic 15/1.7 is one of the better m4/3 lens choices in my opinion, if the focal length works for you. The Panasonic Leica lenses (PL 15, PL 25, PL 42.5, PL 45) offer beautiful, organic rendering that favorably compares with some of the best glass I use on full frame. I agree with Cinegain that in general the Olympus glass may be preferable to Panasonic, I don't believe that doesn't apply to the Panasonic Leica lenses. 

Remember the crop factor when shooting 4K with the GH4, so a 15mm (30mm FF equivalent) is not as wide as you might expect. While I prefer the 20/1.7 for stills based on focal length (though it is kind of clinically sharp compared to the 15/1.7), I prefer the 15/1.7 for GH4 4K video.

Why not look at getting the 12-35/2.8 so you get some zoom, stabilization, a faster and constant aperture, and excellent build quality and some weather protection (if that matters)? The 15/1.7 is kind of expensive, maybe you could pick up a used 12-35/2.8 for not much more?

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If I had the budget I would definitely buy the 12 to 35. 

I think I will go with the 14 to 140 mm. 

How do you think the marker looks for barely used gh4's ? I plan to sale it pretty quick when the NX1 is available in my area. How much loos can I expect? 

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You're from Slovenia? If that's the case, like I said in the other topic:

EU wide offerings: http://geizhals.eu/?fs=nx1&in= , so you could go with Foto Koch or Foto Erhardt for example.

​You could just order a NX1 already. Don't think that's a problem. If you're up for a little road trip, you could even cross the border and go up to Vienna where it's in store and pick one up in person. Don't think it's much of an idea to go up and buy a new GH4 kit and then sell it in a few months though. Unless you really have a shoot coming up where you need the 4K or something and you really need to buy it locally for whatever reason... I'd say there's little point to get the GH4 now if you're set on the NX1 already. But if you go GH4, pick one up 2nd hand. Must be some folks that went fullframe with the A7S and perhaps Nikon D750. Or the NX1, and now have to part with their beloved GH4. And once you're done with it, if you bought it second hand, you don't have to drop the price much lower than what you got it for. You'd lose more on a new one. And in the end either a new or 2nd one both can accomplish the same.

@ darrellcraig: you're right. I was mainly talking about the normal line-up like the 14-140mm and the 14mm and 20mm pancakes. From what I've seen the Leica branded ones are something else. But then again, so is the price, no? ;)

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I was thinking about the NX1 as well but went for a used GH4 (€1.000). What I like about the GH4 is the fact that it is very reliable and a "grown up" camera system with lots of glass. I only own 14-140mm and the 35-100 and use them very rarely. For video I use FDs, Nikon and M42 with cheap speedboosters and anamorphic adapters.

You could buy a cheap Canon FD 20mm 2.8 plus 100$ speedbooster and you are pretty wide and fast... :)

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I was thinking about the NX1 as well but went for a used GH4 (€1.000). What I like about the GH4 is the fact that it is very reliable and a "grown up" camera system with lots of glass. I only own 14-140mm and the 35-100 and use them very rarely. For video I use FDs, Nikon and M42 with cheap speedboosters and anamorphic adapters.

You could buy a cheap Canon FD 20mm 2.8 plus 100$ speedbooster and you are pretty wide and fast... :)

Yeah, that kind of scares me about the NX1 too. It's still pretty much in its early stages. And a big thing for me is lenses as well. I do like to have some native glass for hybrid shooting, it's just nice to have electronicly controlled lenses when shooting stills. But if I want really nice ones native for Samsung, it's the expensive S-series. There's not much else to choose from. And in meanwhile I have quite a history with micro four thirds, so it's not as if I can just 'switch' systems like that. And I do love the portability and the flexibility of the m43 system. That's why I haven't gone fullframe either. Size and lenses (and perhaps no internal 4K and vari-angle screen).

You just gotta love the M43's adaptability. Maybe TomazK will get a 2nd hand GH4 and then grow to love it, not having the need to go with the NX1 after all. For video vintage lenses are king and the GH4 adores 'em. Gotta love what they offer for the price. Great character and usually built like a tank as well. ​I haven't got much FD's yet, but from what I've gathered they are some of the sharpest. Actually only got the Canon FD 35-70mm f/4 myself (and a R.J. Lens Turbo FD -> M43). Some FD primes would be nice to have perhaps. I did kinda build up quite the massive collection myself in meanwhile. I guess a lot of you know how that goes. You start with one lens and then it kinda spirals out of control. lol. I guess the stuff I have can be divided into a couple of different character sets.

I might only have one FD lens, but I do have two Minolta's. The MD Rokkor 50mm f/1.7 and the 28mm f/2.8. Quite nice. Another that I really came to love is the Pentax-M SMC 50mm f/1.4 Asahi (not the Takumar). My Vivitar 135mm f/2.8 is quite nice too. Then I have a Tokina zoom which is really nice, the Tokina 28-85mm f/4. But I guess these lenses just have to form an oddball set together, as they don't have much similarities with some of my other glass.

A Russian M42 set might have more character with some wicked aperture blades going on... myself, I've obviously got the Zenit HELIOS 44M-4. If you don't own one... how come?! Then there's the MIR-1B, INDUSTAR-61 L/Z, INDUSTAR-50-2, JUPITER-9 and soon even a TAIR-11A. Was thinking perhaps a METEOR-5-1 would be fun too... not sure. Anyways. Great set to add anamorphic to. For that I use the HELIOS 44M-4 as taking lens with the Kalart Victorscope 2x.

I guess you could make a set out of fairly modern Nikon mounted glass. Lots of people like the older full manual lenses. Actually only got that new released classic, the AI-S 28mm f/2.8 MF. It's quite something! That's about as classic and prime as it gets around here Nikon-mount wise. Although the the wide angle Walimex Pro 8mm f/3.5 Fish-Eye II still counts; just isn't a classic. Do own the two modern Nikon zoomlenses which are famous for being used to shoot the Bourne movies with, the 28-70mm f/2.8D and 80-200mm f/2.8D. The Andy Lee recommendation; that man knows his glass! Nikon really has some quality lenses going on... although that does come at a cost. I guess in addition the Nikon mounted Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 II and Sigma ART 18-35mm f/1.8 might add a nice range to the mix. The Tokina is a tad soft, but you've got to love the Sigma ART line-up. The 18-35 on the R.J. Lens Turbo Nikon -> M43 is the combo you might end up shooting with most of the time, it's so brilliant. I actually started to buy Nikon-mount lenses because of aperture control with adapters adapted to M43 cameras. But recently there was a hot deal on the Nikon D5300 with 18-55mm II kitlens (449 EUR) that I couldn't pass on. So all these Nikon mount lenses suddenly became very useful.

The Veydra lens set is pretty brilliant too. They come in at roughly the same price as the VDSLR lenses from Samyang/Rokinon/Walimex/.. but are then dedicated cinema lenses for the M43 system. Adam Wilt regarded them as 'scaled-down Ultra Primes'. Currently only the 16mm, 25mm, 35mm and 50mm are out. The 12mm lens from the set ships out later and they will be adding a even wider option as well as a 85mm. If you followed NAB you know they will be working on dedicated anamorphic primes too. But that's just going to be too much at an expected 5000 USD a pop. I'd rather get a Letus Anamorphx adapter or something.

So a big thing for me: native mount lenses, since that's just the most convenient. The SLR Magic HyperPrime CINE 25mm T0.95 is still one of my favourites (perhaps because secretly I'm a sucker for fullframe like shallow depth of field), but it is of course still full manual, so not really benefitting from being native, just that you can forget about adapters for once. Same for the ZY Optics/Zhongyi 42.5mm f/1.2 and 24mm f/1.7. These all manual lenses actually come native mount, their image rendering kind of reminds of the old days. They're not the sharpest wide open, but they have some funky rendering. Bit artsy these are.

The Panasonic primes are really convenient for minimalistic shooting, I'm talking about the 14mm f/2.5 and the 20mm f/1.7. Smack 'em on a GH4 or what have you and it's such a compact package. And autofocus and electronic aperture is quite nice too when run 'n gunning. For flexibility there's the already discussed 14-140mm (that might lack a bit of 'soul' but I do feel it otherwise performs pretty great). For tele there's the 100-300mm (there's a really neat lens collar from r-roesch.de availlable). Like I said earlier, Olympus has really amazing and affordable glass, similar to the Sigma ART line, very sharp performers, with great rendition in color, details and out-of-focus areas. Very organic. Quite different to the Panasonic lenses (ok, excluding the Leicas then) that kind of have that modern sharp and contrasty video look, which like I said sometimes I feel might lack a little 'soul'. The 45mm f/1.8 is really great. Then I do have the 60mm macro lens, but I think it doesn't have that much use for video. The 17mm and 25mm f/1.8's I do not have, but they must be pretty cool too I guess. And who wouldn't want the 12mm f/2 or the 75mm f/1.8? But man, those don't come cheap! Pro line-up is really nice. Blessed to have the 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO which came with the Olympus E-M1. The 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO with teleconverter is still something to dream off, but again, that's the kind of prices that buys you a new camera! I mean, I would love to have Olympus everything, that might just make for the greatest set out there (well, from a hybrid (video AND photo) perspective), but that is just not going to happen. So I guess, roughly the same reason I'm not really eager to jump the NX1-train just yet, atleast with M43 there's lots of native mount alternatives. Another downside of an all Olympus set is the use on other brand M43 cameras... no stabilization! The E-M1's IBIS is amazing, but the GH2, GH4 and BMPCC that I also shoot these lenses with don't have that luxury. Actually, the Panasonic primes with stabilization might be an interesting buy (there are only 4 stabilized M43 lenses, all from Panasonic: the expensive Leica branded Nocticron 42.5mm f/1.2 and Elmarit 45mm f/2.8 macro and then we have the new Lumix 42.5mm f/1.7 and 30mm f/2.8 macro).

Then there are some electronically controlled lenses that aren't Panasonic or Olympus. I have two from Sigma actually. They had the earlier versions of the 19mm and 30mm f/2.8's, the EX DNs, on sale for 100 EUR a piece! Optically really strong. Mechanicly and material wise didn't really shine, but as long as the image was great and the price right... who can complain about that? Since, they've replaced them with a new line-up, including a 60mm. The new ones now have smooth surface focus rings, not a big fan of that.

So, I've got quite a bit of stuff going on. :lol: Kinda married to the M43 system now and it doesn't look like she's going to let me off the hook that easily... but I can't complain really, I'd do it all over again. Yeah, the GH4 might not have that awesome lowlight of the A7S, perhaps not the color, dynamic range, codec and upped slowmo of the NX1, but it's still an awesome camera. And personally prefer the flexibility the system offers (especially what native lenses for hybrid use concerned). But different folks, different strokes. Any of these cameras out there on the market today can give you killer results, atleast that much is for sure.

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@ Cinegain great post. I see that you realy Love the m43 sistem. Im not a pro shooter im a beginner with crazy ideas for short film's. There is yust no end to my imagination and everyone i talk about my ideas said i yust need to shoot them, couse if i wont i will regret it some day.


I was working on seweral sets as a extra in some production and got the feewer to do something in this busines.

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I dunno why people still think NX is still in early stages, it was the first mirrorless APS-C cam before the NEX even come out..  third party support is lacking that I agree on.

​Well, not the NX system, just the NX1. Where the GH4 is just a logical and evolutionary successor to the GH2 and GH3, mainly upping the resolution to 4K, the NX1 is a very bold approach, not so much evolutionary but rather looking at the future and deduct what could be made with the latest tech to make it relevant and ahead of its time. So, in that respect, I do find it in its early stages. The first big firmware update seemed to have improved it quite substantially and who knows what they'll give it next. So, I agree, it is a very cool player, but I do feel like the GH4 is more grounded. Just the way I see things.

@ Cinegain great post. I see that you realy Love the m43 sistem. Im not a pro shooter im a beginner with crazy ideas for short film's. There is yust no end to my imagination and everyone i talk about my ideas said i yust need to shoot them, couse if i wont i will regret it some day.


I was working on seweral sets as a extra in some production and got the feewer to do something in this busines.

​Yeah, definitly do something with that! It's great to shape ideas and make them a reality. Best of luck!

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Thx Cinegain. Oh the whole time I wrote ''just'' with a y, dam you tv for teaching me to speak English but not to write. :) True story. 

I think at the start i will go with the 14 to 140 and then I will expend my lens line up with some Canon FD glas, the Nikon Bourn movie lenses seem wery intriguing to me.

On  an other note that anamorphic footage from the Gh4 looks just amazing to me. Can't wait for the V log profile, the anamorphic-V log combo looks just amazing. 

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Just to help you in your choice (To get the 15mm or not) here you are video I shoot at ISO800 and Shutter speed at either 30 or 60 at night. I am personally satisfied with the output, then again, I am not a pro https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xeWsBXrrhGM 
Personally I am only using this lens for low light... for other shots I am going with the 12-35mm.

 

Good luck

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Just to help you in your choice (To get the 15mm or not) here you are video I shoot at ISO800 and Shutter speed at either 30 or 60 at night. I am personally satisfied with the output, then again, I am not a pro https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xeWsBXrrhGM 
Personally I am only using this lens for low light... for other shots I am going with the 12-35mm.

 

Good luck

​Nice video and good low light. Was this the Cherry Blossom Festival? Would Love to visit Tokyo sometime. Maybe at the time of the fireworks festival​ :)

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​Nice video and good low light. Was this the Cherry Blossom Festival? Would Love to visit Tokyo sometime. Maybe at the time of the fireworks festival​ :)

​Thanks, I am glad you like this example. Yes this was taken during "Sakura" the cherry blossom period in Tokyo. And until you find time to visit Japan/Tokyo, have a look at what I upload. Also be sure to let me know if one of my video sucks, I am hear to learn.

Cheers

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​Thanks, I am glad you like this example. Yes this was taken during "Sakura" the cherry blossom period in Tokyo. And until you find time to visit Japan/Tokyo, have a look at what I upload. Also be sure to let me know if one of my video sucks, I am hear to learn.
Cheers

​I Subscribed to your channel. I like the video with the apes tacking a bath in winter. As a suggestion your videos are pretty statick, try to get some movement in your schots.

in your Sakura video did u use the F1.7 aperture?

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​I Subscribed to your channel. I like the video with the apes tacking a bath in winter. As a suggestion your videos are pretty statick, try to get some movement in your schots.

in your Sakura video did u use the F1.7 aperture?

​Thanks for subscribing! Thank you for the suggestion, I am planning to put more movement with a slider soon, but the concept is : Contemplative videos : Static. But I am learning and little by little I will improve things.

Yes in the Sakura video I was at F1.7 most of the time.

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