Portraits and daily life. Hands on with the Olympus 45mm F1.2 Pro.

Those who know me know that portraits will always be my main stay in photography and that my roots started with Olympus long before I made it through Sony, Pentax, Leica, Ricoh, Panasonic  (well, basically almost every brand) before settling down on Fujifilm.

Kei on the Fujifilm X100F, Classic Chrome. Who says portraits must be shot at a 85-90mm equiv anyway?

Even so, Olympus’s micro-four-thirds series will always hold a special place in my heart and when I had the opportunity of a 10 hour span to test the not yet released 45mm F1.2 Pro half a month ago, I obviously jumped at it.

(I am not gonna bore you with the specs, so kindly drop by my buddy’s (Wong L P) sharing on the lens here if you want to read about stuff like how many ED elements, MFD , weight and the blah)

Pen F Oly 45 F1.2 Pro
the kit i had for 10 hours, the Olympus Pen F and 45mm F1.2 Pro

The 45mm F1.2 Pro aided with the fast focusing system on the Pen F (obviously the EM1 Mark II will be even faster and more reliable ) was a pleasant surprise to shoot. Handling was better than expected given that the Pen F was basically built for smaller primes. Nope, my fingers didn’t go into spasms or cramps.

Yes, I am going to say that some issues with MFT still persist such as the stagnant dynamic range etc and hopefully one day a breakthrough in their sensors will come but seriously , wow, the Olympus Pro series are worth taking a second look at and these lenses manages to take the system to another level.

As commonly said: good glass can make all the difference. 

Olympus 45F1.2 Pro0123
PenF, Oly 45 F1.2Pro at F1.2, ISO200.

Not to be too clinical about focal lengths, I will say that this lens can be an everyday lens so long as one can get used to the focal length given its small footprint and light weight. I am very comfortable using the approx 90mm focal length as an everyday lens.

 Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro
Pen F, Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro at ISO200, F1.2
Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro
Pen F, Oly 45 F1.2 Pro at ISO80, F1.8 , Monochrome filter exclusive to Pen F, added grains.

Not to end without even speaking about one of the most advertised abilities of this lens is its newly developed characteristic : feather bokeh.

There has been much emphasis on the feather bokeh on the Olympus 45mm F1.2 and of course, curiosity. Yes, the bokeh is really smooth, rounded, creamy with good drop off from the focus areas. Reminiscent of the bokeh from the Fujifilm XF56APD.

Olympus 45mm F1.2 Pro
Pen F, Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro at ISO200, F1.2

Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro cropped

PenF, Oly 45mm F1.2Pro at ISO200, F1.4

Don’t be surprised, its also really details galore for this setup (way cropped in too much image at the bottom from the top)

10 hours isn’t much, not even for a flight to the other side of the earth and back but what I can say that this lens definitely holds its own against the PanaLeica 42.5mm F1.2, which to me is and will always be one of the iconic lenses in micro-four-thirds.

If you are looking, Olympus sure has a good piece of glass worth considering here.

*disclaimer. These images from the Oly 45mm F1.2 Pro were all SOOC JPEG and adjusted only for exposure and cropped when needed. Raw support was not present back then for the Olympus 45mm F1.2 Pro. The kit has since been returned to Olympus Singapore and I was not paid in any form for this post other than the use of equipment for that short 10 hours. 

2 Replies to “Portraits and daily life. Hands on with the Olympus 45mm F1.2 Pro.”

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