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Thread: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

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    Default 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I currently have the first edition of the 14-54mm and was wondering how much difference I will see if I get the 12-60mm. Is it a big difference or should I just save my money?
    E-5 with grip,E-3 with grip, E-510, 14-42mm, 40-150mm, 70-300mm, 9-18mm, ex-25, fl-36, 14-54mm MK1, 50-200mm SWD

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    LOL. I'm not sure that you will get a clear cut answer to that question. I have the 12-60mm lens and really love it. But the owners of the 14-54mm lens are usually vocal lovers of that lens. Keep track and see how many votes you get for either lens, it will probably be close. Personally, I think the two lens must be very, very close to each other performance wise. So I can't see you spending your money to replace the 14-54 with a very similiar lens which will have basically the same performance.
    Steven R
    Tampa, Florida

    E-330, E-520, E-3

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    Fast, accurate focus and sharp, sharp, sharp. I love it on my E-5 and so would you.

    Cheers,

    Rick

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    The 12-60 is a better lens. Given that you can pick them up for $500 used, and probably sell your 14-54 MK 1 for $200, the lens is a steal at $300 net.

    The extra 2 mm on the wide end is really useful, IMHO. Sharp, and lightening fast on the E-3 or E-5

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I have both lenses, and while I haven't done any specific comparison between the two, I like the 12-60 better. I keep the 12-60 on my main camera (E-M1) and the 14-54 on my second camera (E5). If I only had one camera with the 14-54, I don't know that I would buy the 12-60 as a second lens.

    I like Jonnieb's recommendation.
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    iq is close but that extra 2mm makes all the difference for me.
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I agree the extra 2mm on the wide end may not seem like much, but it is. A difference between 28mm and 24mm (in 35mm terms). The extra 4mm on the long is also an advantage, a difference between 108mm and 120mm (in 35mm terms). It's fast, it's sharp and I have found it the perfect range for wide angle scenic landscape, large family portraits as well as headshots. Would I get one if I had the 14-54? Yes. But then, I need a back up lens and would relegate the 14-54 to that important status, which I do with the one I own.
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I don't have a 12-60, but I agree with everyone who is saying that there is a big difference between the 12 and 14mm (i.e. 24 and 28). So if you want more wide-angle coverage, the 12-60 absolutely would make a difference.

    Edit: this issue often comes up when trying to decide between point-and-shoot cameras. Nowadays, most come with a 28mm wide end, but some come with 24mm, which makes them more desirable, IMHO. For example, one of the resons I bought a Panasonic LX5 was because of the 24mm wide-end lens.
    Rich
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    More on the wide end is not an issue as I have the 9-18mm which I use for most of my landscape stuff.
    E-5 with grip,E-3 with grip, E-510, 14-42mm, 40-150mm, 70-300mm, 9-18mm, ex-25, fl-36, 14-54mm MK1, 50-200mm SWD

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    Almost every response you've gotten here is mentioning the extra 2mm. I think the reason is because that is the primary reason to pick the 12-60 over the 14-54. If you don't really care about the extra wide-end, I'd say stick with the 14-54 and spend the money on somthing else. I think the 12-60 is larger and heavier too. If so, another reason to be happy with the 14-54.

    I want to add that I myself would rather have the 12-60, but just because of the extra 2mm (even though I also have a 9-18).
    Rich
    Olympus E-M10; Panasonic GM5
    m4/3 lenses: Oly 75-300; Oly 14-42 f3.5-5.6 II R; Oly 17 f1.8; Oly 40-150 f4.0-5.6 R; Oly WCON-P01 adapter; Rokinon f7.5 fisheye; Sigma 19 f2.8; Pan 20 f1.7; Pan 12-35 f2.8; Pan 12-32

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    They are close enough to not matter IQ wise.
    When I was selling my spare 12-60, I persuaded buyer to actually not buy it since he had 11-22 and 14-54. At least he paid for Starbucks so I didn't waste time AND money.

    14-54 is smaller, lighter, it accepts smaller filter (same as 50-200) and it's faster at the far end + throughout range.
    12-60 is wider, longer and has somewhat measurable IQ.

    OldDigiMan had really nice post here when he professionally compared these two lenses - center, edges, aperture ranges - all together.

    I have them both - use 14-54 on E-1 and 12-60 on E
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    The IQ between the two lenses is very similar, and you have to remember that the 14-54 is brighter than the 12-60.

    If you don't need the 2mm on the wide end, I'd recommend buying a different lens. Maybe the 50mm f/2 or the EC-14/20 for your 50-200. The 7-14 is also one hell of an upgrade for the 9-18.
    Olympus E-M1 Mk II
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I rarely hang out in these forums any more due to shifting interests. Historically some points that usually come up in the 14-54mm vs. 12-60mm debates over the years include:
    • Obviously the 12-60mm has more range than the 14-54mm, so it makes more sense when you are carrying one lens. In general, more mm on the wide end is more noticeable than mm on the telephoto end, where you can often crop the photo to achieve the focal length.
    • However, historically there have been complaints that the 12-60 in the 12-14mm range suffers from a special form of distortion that some users call a double ended mustache. It bothers some people quite a bit, and others don't seem to notice it at all. I believe it shows up more when you are photographing buildings with straight lines (which are problematical for all wide angle lenses, but the 12-60mm is evidently a bit more). I don't recall people saying there is a good automatic software fix for the 12-60mm distorition.
    • Note, when you go wider than 14mm, you will not be able to use the pop-up flash alone without diffusion, and with external flashes, you will need to either use the diffusion panel provided with the flash, or some other way of spreading the light. It is easier to remember to switch to diffusion when you switch lenses (i.e. to 9-18mm or 11-22mm) than if you just turn the dial to 12-13mm.
    • I've seen complaints that the 2 SWD lenses (12-60mm and 50-200mm) take even longer to focus on micro 4/3rds cameras, but on the other hand on traditional 4/3rds cameras they focus somewhat faster when using the optical viewfinder (using live view mode on the E-5, it likely would be like micro 4/3rds cameras). The 14-54mm II lens would be slighly faster at focusing in micro 4/3rds cameras.
    • One thing I like about the 14-54mm and 50-200mm pair is that they use the same filter size and lens cap. If I'm only using the two lenses, then it is easy to swap the lens cap between the two.
    • If you care, the Olympus ring flash can only be used on 4 lenses: Olympus 14-54mm mark 1, Olympus 50-200mm mark 1, and the 35/50mm lenses with the extra adapter. You would not be able to use the ring flash on the 12-60mm.
    • As Edmunds mentions, the 14-54mm is slightly faster (about 1/3 f/stop if memory serves) in the range that the two lenses overlap. I'm not sure 1/3 f/stop matters in the real world.
    • I tend to think the 14-54mm and E-5 is perfectly balanced using standard batteries, and the 12-60mm would probably make it slightly top heavy. Also, I find the 14-54mm mark 1 is just the right height so that the camera sits flush on a table (same with 50-200mm mark 1), while the 12-60mm is slightly bigger, and the camera base would not sit flush.

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    Quote Originally Posted by Edmunds View Post
    The IQ between the two lenses is very similar
    I had the 14-54, tried the 12-60, and that was what my testing showed, really a toss-up. The extra 2mm is nice -- it does make a difference -- but in the end I like the smaller size and lighter weight of the 14-54 over the wider wide end of the 12-60.
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I have both the 14-54 I and the 12-60 and the 14-54 has pretty much been relegated to backup duty on my IR E520. The 12-60 focuses faster and quieter, it's got the direct-connect manual focus, it's wider (2mm is significant) and longer (not much difference there). But it's a bigger lens too and at 12mm, I have to make sure to remove the hood if the E-3's popup flash is used, otherwise it casts a pretty bad foreground shadow. The 12-60 is significantly bigger than the 14-54. You also lose 1/2 a stop at the long-end (f/3.5 vs. f/4.0)

    For me the biggest advantage are the fast, quiet, direct-connect focusing and wide angle coverage.

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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    I'll cut you a good deal on the 12-60. Pictures are in the for sale section
    Clint
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    Default Re: 12-60mm vs 14-54mm

    The 14-54mm II seems a perfect match for my E-M1; I really wouldn't want a larger lens on the camera.
    I would think you could get a 14-54mm and a 9-18mm for the cost of the 12-60mm lens.
    E-510 IR 665nm, 14-42mm II, 40-150mm II

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