Re: [OM] OM Zuiko 35-80/2.8 on sale at KEH

Subject: Re: [OM] OM Zuiko 35-80/2.8 on sale at KEH
From: Ken Norton <ken@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 10 Mar 2020 12:51:04 -0800
> Are you speaking of this lens historically with film or even today on a 
> digital body?

Even today. I used it very extensively on the OM-6D Mk1, as well as on
the stable of Four-Thirds bodies. I think it really hits its stride
with the lowly E-1, but it is good on most everything. Focusing is
sometimes a bear--especially at the 35mm end where the zone of focus
is deep enough that we can lose the snap that happens with lenses like
the 35/2.

> Perhaps you have been chanting OMmmm for so long now you are enraptured? Or 
> too long in the dark winter of Alaska and the exhilaration of light coming 
> is, ahh, affecting your mental state?

Well, duh. This DST switch really screws with us up in Alaska (and is
completely unnecessary). I'm just excited to be able to see the
thermometer get above zero for a second day in a row.

> Just wondering..., are there any newish lenses that you could similarly 
> embellish? or are they all too spec perfect to have that character? Perhaps 
> you can show us an "arms wrapped around" grizzly shot?

The one lens which I think punches above its weight in this regard is
the latest generation of Nikon 70-200/2.8. I think it does an amazing
job of subject isolation and has a similar "wrap-around" look that the
big aperture OM Zuikos have. While I love the Canon 70-200/2.8, there
is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Nikon's is vastly superior in
regards to the intangible.

The one Canon lens which is slam-dunk incredible, is the new 28-70 F2.
It's my dog's breakfast when it comes to focal length range, but the
look from that lens is definitely in a category of it's own. It has
that wrap-around look with a very smooth fall-off. While the bokeh is
engineered to be better behaved (softer edges to the balloons), it has
that same isolation that the OMZ 35-80/2.8 has.

The Sigma ART lenses are odd. I think the best thing I can say about
them is that there is little focus breathing, but the bokeh
characteristics look "engineered" to me. It's the optical equivalent
to a Photoshop "Plug-in".

> I know ~80% of my film photos were taken with the 35-80, but I don't recall 
> it having the same charm as the 100/2, for instance, when it came to 
> embracing people.

Well, given that both of them are readily available for a comparison test...

I'm going to say that when it comes to people photography with the OMZ
lenses, the ones I have would be ranked like this:

Full Frame (film or digital):
1. 100/2
2. 35/2
3. 35-80/2.8
4. 100/2.8
5. 300/4.5

Crop Sensor (digital):
1. 35-80/2.8
2. 100/2
3. 35/2
4. 50/1.4
5. 200/4

Obviously, the crop format is going to drive the focal lengths shorter.

On the Four-Thirds format, the 35-80/2.8 is the equivalent to focal
length 70-160/2.8. This is the rare time I wish the lens was 35-100,
but it does quite peachy.

Side note. The OMZ 28/2 is a bit of a problem child on some of the
Four-Thirds bodies, but was perfect on the Canon. There is a lot of
central hot-spotting with some sensors.

AG Schnozz
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