Olympus Macro Comparison – 30mm vs 60mm #RegularRandom

#regularrandom #regularrandom #regularrandom #regularrandom #regularrandom

The lovely Jude from The Earth Laughs in Flowers asked if I had compared my two Olympus macro lenses. I recently got the 30mm macro lens after having used the 60mm macro for the last few years.

I thought it was a great opportunity to compare the two lenses via our RegularRandom challenge, where we spend just 5 minutes shooting a subject. To join, tag your post regularrandom and link back to this post so that we can find you. The instructions can be found here.

For this week, I chose some pretty Lisianthus flowers and started with the 30mm macro lens on my Olympus OMD EM5 camera. The lens is an M. Zuiko 30mm f/3.5 Macro lens.

Then I switched over to the 60mm macro lens and shot them all over again. The lens is an M. Zuiko 60mm f/2.8 Macro lens.

I’m surprised at the results. I think the images from the 60mm are far superior to the 30mm and I really didn’t believe the difference would be so great. I think the 30mm photos are somewhat “flatter” than the 60’s, and there’s a softer and creamier and dreamier look to the 60mm shots.

I will say that the 30mm lens is 100% easier to use than the 60mm. The 30mm lets you get super close (9mm compared with 19mm on the 60) and I can almost always get my focus with it unless I’m too close, which is very hard to do on the 30.

The 60mm macro lens has taken me a lot of practice to get as comfortable with it as I am. This shoot has taught me that I’ve missed this lens and I shouldn’t be so lazy, I should use it more often. I used to use it all the time because it was the only macro I had!

Still, the 30 definitely has it’s place. It’s a lovely lens, it let’s you get very close, it was half the price and it still gives you very nice images. The 60 just takes it further.

What are you thoughts on my comparison?

Don’t forget to join #regularrandom and spend just 5 minutes shooting a subject! I look forward to seeing your shots.

x desleyjane

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22 Comments Add yours

  1. Without being daunted by technicalities and comparisons, I’ll just say all these shots gave me huge pleasure: the sprinklings of pollen; the intimate, may I say almost erotic, glimpses; the frilly petal edges. You were obviously in love with your subject.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      Thanks Meg that’s exactly how I felt – I have a few more of those intimate shots. I guess I was slightly more in love in the second set 😊

      Like

  2. susurrus says:

    The thing that strikes me, seeing these beautiful images, is how terrifyingly small the in focus area is. It’s lovely to be able to throw the background out of focus with the 60mm, but I would also include some of the 30mm ones in my favourites. The 30mm has a handy DOF (for example, the tight bud picture is lovely). I’d guess you’ll learn to love them both.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      That’s the biggest challenge with these lenses. I shot these at the end of the day so there wasn’t a tonne of light. So I was using a wide open aperture – hence very small depth of focus. I think I love them both. But I have learnt that I really really love the 60 😍

      Liked by 1 person

      1. susurrus says:

        There’s something really special about that way of seeing the world.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. desleyjane says:

          Totally agree 😊

          Like

  3. Your photos are lovely, Desleyjane. Big sigh of relief! I have the 60mm lens and worked hard to learn how to use it. I really didn’t want to hear that I now need to go out and invest in the 30mm. The last lens I bought was the 25mm. Although it’s not macro, I may do a similar comparison, as I am curious to see how the photos will compare.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      Thanks Susan. Yep I am in love (still) with the 60. Excellent – looking forward to your comparison.

      Like

  4. Helen Bushe says:

    Lots of lovely images with both lenses. I have a Fuji 60mm macro, which is good, but compares unfavourBly with my canon 100mm full macro. The Canon is so much easier to use.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      Thank you Helen 😊

      Like

  5. Heyjude says:

    I find it difficult to compare unless I have the two images side by side, but I think the 60mm is slightly sharper? Of course this is all subject to how focused you are as the photographer, as we both know it’s not easy to get this lens to behave. I love all the shots from both lenses and thank you for doing the comparison. I shall stick with the 60mm for now and try to improve on my shots. Maybe next I shall try using it with a tripod and see how that helps as I am not so happy with the sharpness of this week’s set. Have a lovely week!

    https://smallbluegreenflowers.wordpress.com/2017/02/26/five-minutes-with-hyacinths/

    Liked by 2 people

    1. desleyjane says:

      Yes it’s sharper and I think the images have a little more life. I contemplated putting them side by side and I might just go back and do that. I don’t know why I didn’t, just lazy I guess! Oops. Off to see your hyacinths now 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Su Leslie says:

    Lovely shots and great idea to do a comparison. Looking at them makes me realise that I’m drawn to composition and colour, so I like shots made with both lenses. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      Fabulous. Thank you Su.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I agree about the 60 being sharper, with that said there is a place for the soft dreamier look of the 30, especially with soft petals as this flower. Not that I can talk my macros aren’t half as good as yours hun! and my Tamron macro 90mm is VERY Soft. I have always loved the tack sharp images you got with your 60. Love all the images…….30 and 60, it is interesting to compare the differences. Not the same but I have compared my 35mm prime against the 50mm and I found the 50mm way sharper than the 35mm

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      Thanks hun. I enjoyed this and it was a bit educational as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. These are definitely one of my favourite flowers (so often mistaken for roses by those who aren’t familiar with Lisianthus), and these macros are lovely (both sets!).
    I have a five minute post, but definitely zoom rather than macro!
    https://elizabethkrallphotos.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/five-minutes-queen-mary-2-docks-in-sydney/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. desleyjane says:

      Excellent thanks Karen, popping over to have a look now 😊😊

      Like

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