View Full Version : Purchase dilema

Phill D
12-05-2009, 12:50 AM
Ok any suggestions guys. My wife & I decided we'd spend something on ourselves this Christmas as well as the kids. We said we'd spend ~150 each. So what do I get?
First thoughts
FL36 flash or,
35mm Macro f3.5 lens (always wanted the 50f2 but it's too expensive) or,
EX25 extension tube & spend the rest on booze or,
Sell my E510 & get an E620 might just be able to get there if I get a good price for the E510 (but I have to say I'm pretty happy with the 510 except for the occasional DR problem) or,
Put the money in the bank & save for a panleica 14-150 lens?

Not got long to make a decision so any thoughts or other ideas very welcome.

12-05-2009, 02:15 AM
You don't need a new body, yet, I'd say. If the E-410 had IS I don't think I'd have upgraded to the E-620. Wait until the next even better camera gets out.

36R flash sounds like a good idea.

35mm macro is OK, but I like the f/2.0 versatility of the 50mm better, unless you want the 1:1 macro.

Extension tube and booze sounds like a good idea, then you could make multiple lenses macro lenses at a variety of focal lengths. And get booze too.

Or, put it in the bank for a 50mm f/2. I can't imagine what the 14-150 superzoom is like, though it sounds awesome.

So in conclusion, the only thing I have helped decide is not to upgrade your camera yet.

12-05-2009, 06:13 AM
Personally I think the price on the FL36R is bonkers and the features of the R are beyond the capabilities of the E510. I'd go with the Metz 36 or 48. If you shoot macro a lot, then go with a macro over the extension tubes. With extension tubes you'll get closer focusing but a dimmer screen. As for dynamic range, when I run into a high DR problem I'm able to fix much of that in Lightroom using LR/Enfuse.

I have the E510, it's a solid camera. I do have my eye on the E620, though. Really I'd like the EP2 but the price just puts me off.

12-05-2009, 11:54 AM
I'd probably go flash first, then the extension tube. These two items increase the utility of the items you already have.

If you can, try and dig up a used FL36, because as Ken said, the 36R has capabilities beyond the E-510. If you can, you might be able to budget for both that and the extension tube.

12-05-2009, 03:08 PM
I'll be the first to tell you I don't know anything about extension tubes, etc. However I do know you can't go wrong with booze so that's my vote! :D ;)

12-05-2009, 04:24 PM
Many people want a macro lens without a really solid chunk of logic behind it. They're single focal length lenses, typical with a flatter focal plane, extended focusing helicals to get to 1:1 ratio and optimized for close distance work. The 1:1 is important since that's 1:1 to the 4/3 sensor, so that's a small area. Keep in mind that also gets you mighty close to an object unless you get a tele-macro. So unless you're keen of having a bee on a flower - that close to your face - this may not be really the lens you want. There are also close-up diopter lenses adapters that will get a lens in closer with the light drop off of extension tubes.

A good whiskey does make this science fluff more palatable.

Phill D
12-06-2009, 09:03 AM
Great advice guys thanks.
I'm of the same view Raven don't think I'll change body yet as Ken said DR isn't much of a problem. A flash was my first preference. I like macro shooting but also would like a wider aperture lens so will probably hold out for the 50mm some time rather than go for the 35mm now. Extension tube is an option as I'd like to try it with the 70-300 as I've seen some great shots done that way. Ken your comments re the FL36 vs Metz are interesting I hadn't thought of not going Oly as I wanted to make sure the flash was fully compatible. The Metz 36 is very cheap in comparison but looks a bit less integrated with the camera, even the 48 is a bit cheaper than the FL36 so it looks like a good choice but would it be as fully integrated with the camera as a dedicated Oly flash for someone who hasn't ventured into flash at all yet? What do you think Ken what would I be loosing out if I went for the Metz? Jekostas I like your thinking flash & ext tube maybe I'll try ebay for an older flash or maybe I'll just go for the booze as Builder suggested. Hey I could give the booze to my wife so she doesn't notice if I go over the price limit ;) Well it is Christmas after all.

12-06-2009, 01:32 PM
Just so you know, for the Metz flashes they will fully integrate with Olympus bodies, but you will lose about 20% of the stated guide number (so 36 really = GN30, 48 really = GN40).

Dunno why this is, but Metz has stated this officially.

12-06-2009, 09:50 PM
I'd trade the guide number for the other features of the Metz, like faster recycling.

Phill D
12-08-2009, 01:15 PM
Interesting info guys, I think I'm leaning towards the metz 48. I've a short upcoming trip to the US just before Christmas so who knows maybe I'll see something on my travels.

12-08-2009, 07:38 PM
If you make it by B&H or somewhere I notice there are some pretty insanely low prices. 50mm macro for $395. 70-300mm for $255. 12-60mm for $755. 9-18mm for $475. 35mm macro for $185. Not gonna find prices like that in the UK!

Phill D
12-09-2009, 04:02 PM
Raven yes they are pretty cheap especially the 50mm very tempting. They also have the oly flashes at discount which makes them a better bargain, although the Metz 48 at $199 still seems the best. Only snag for me is that I fly via Chicago & not Newark. I tried to organise it via Newark but it just wouldn't work out. Maybe another trip but thanks for the info.

Phill D
12-18-2009, 01:05 PM
Thanks for all your help guys I got the Oly FL36 in the end. It's small size was very appealing & it was a good discount price in the end at a convenient store. Unfortunately it's been seized & wrapped for Christmas so I can't try it out yet :( . Mind you it gives me time to think what to try it out on. Anyone got any recommendations for good books on flash photography for a beginner or maybe I'll stick to my original idea & spend the left over cash on booze!