The Olympus Pen 45mm Lens: Is It Worth It? A Photographic Comparison


The Olympus Pen has become the holy grail of blogging cameras, it’s impossible to go to an event and not see 10 of them hanging from necks by Vogue leather straps.



I took the plunge and bought one in January and, as someone who also owns a lot of much higher end photography equipment, it was a brilliant decision. Whipping out a big DSLR isn’t always appropriate either to the location – I like to keep things as low key as possible in restaurants, for example – or to your poor shoulder lugging it about.

The Pen is lightweight and versatile but the kit lens is extremely limiting. With the right lens (and understanding of manual settings) you can produce imagery that is easily as high quality as that of a much more expensive camera. The 45mm is usually the natural progression and is definitely a worthwhile investment if you hope to take your photography a bit more seriously than point and shoot.

It’s got a lowest level f stop of 1.8 which is very, very good for a lens that is firmly on the cheaper end of the scale. That essentially means that it produces a really nice depth of field, or background blur.

One of the things I see people getting a bit stuck with is how to take full length outfit shots or basically cope with how ‘zoomed’ in it is. The 45mm is a Prime lens which means that it doesn’t possess a zoom function, it’s fixed at a 45mm focal length. Which means you’re gonna have to move yourself!

I think it’s easier to show rather than tell so below are two shot scenarios taken on both the kit lens and the 45mm, with each shot taken twice in the same place – once with each lens!


Olympus Pen 45mm vs. Kit Lens


This was taken as far back as I could stand in my bedroom! I was probably about 2 metres away from the subject and held the camera down at around waist height to get an ‘eye level’ perspective.



For this shot – my preferred style to the one above! – I stood about a metre away and angled the lens downward. By being so close on such a low f stop (1.8) the lens is forced to choose where to focus and using manual settings I opted for the ‘body wash’ bottle in the middle.



This one was taken in my kitchen about 2-3 metres away from the subject (that lil babe of a donut)…



One of the best things about the 45mm is that lovely creamy background blur you can achieve with relative ease. It’s not a macro lens but it does a pretty good job of capturing detail! This was taken about half a metre away from the jammy babenut.





I hope that’s somewhat helpful in showing you what the lil 45mm can do and goes some way to ease your ‘zoom’ concerns! My heart is currently lusting after the 75mm but my bank account is screaming a big fat no.

PS. I am taking bookings for blogger shoots so feel free to hit me up on IG or Twitter DM, or email! xo


  1. September 10, 2017 / 3:20 pm

    Love the 45mm, just shows in your photos how good it is! Loving those streetstyle shots too.

    Kirsty x

    • Beth Sandland
      September 12, 2017 / 2:50 pm

      Me too! I want the 75mm next but I’m bank account is like noooooo 😩

  2. September 10, 2017 / 5:38 pm

    First things first, your photography is a dream! You not only take beautiful photos as you look beautiful as well! This post is actually very helpful as I had this camera in the back of my mind and it makes me think if it would be the right camera for me at the moment – I take most of my blog photos inside which means I don’t have a lot of space to move around but it would certainly be a great investment for those who take a lot of photos out such as outfit photos!

    • Beth Sandland
      September 12, 2017 / 2:52 pm

      It’s a really great little piece of kit and there are loads of lenses to choose from! The 45mm tends to be a natural progression because it’s significantly better but not too pricey. Good idea to consider your needs though! Xx

  3. September 12, 2017 / 8:05 pm

    I don’t have an Olympus I shoot on a canon but it looks great!

  4. September 12, 2017 / 8:55 pm

    Beautiful photos – this post has made me want to get the Olympus pen even more! I love the blurred out background effect xx

  5. Elizabeth
    September 24, 2017 / 6:48 pm

    Your photos are so beautiful, you’ve really mastered this camera! I dream of trying it but maybe in a few years, after I save my pennies haha! Honestly, I was unsure before but you’ve definitely convinced me 😀 xx

    elizabeth ♡ ”Ice Cream” whispers Clara
    (lets follow each other on bloglovin or instagram)

  6. October 1, 2017 / 9:29 pm

    Beautiful post! I agree 45mm is great and I love it! But you really need to step away from the subject. Not always my friends are keen for me to go two metres away from the table at restaurant to take a picture 😀 so I always have both lenses handy to switch quickly, but it’s amazing especially if you are just starting with photography and want your pictures to step up without you having high level of photography knowledge 🙂

  7. T.Davis
    October 3, 2017 / 7:43 am

    ‪Love the post. I bought a Olympus Pen last year and to be honest I rarely used. However just recently I started using it again & I realized why I love it‬

  8. Olivia Mulhearn
    October 10, 2017 / 12:36 pm

    can i just say your photos are AMAZING i love them! i have the lens to, it does take quite a bit of getting used to but it really can help to create some amazing images

    • Beth Sandland
      October 10, 2017 / 12:50 pm

      That’s so kind, thank you!

  9. October 10, 2017 / 9:44 pm

    This couldn’t have come at a better time, I’ve been browsing at new lens for my Olympus for ages but I think you’ve just sealed the deal! Ps. Amazing, A-MA-ZING photos!

  10. October 12, 2017 / 11:11 pm

    Such a useful post! Finally read it 😂 defo getting the 45mm xx

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