I recently got the 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro lens Dec 2, and am really happy with my choice.
The 40-150 Pro is a bit heavy at 880 g (660 g without tripod adapter), but due to the compactness of the lens, the weight is very easy to control. If I were shooting with any other OM-D I would probably NEED the add-on grip; but with the E-M1 already having a molded grip, I can shoot fine without the HLD-7 grip. Although the HLD-7 grip does improve the stability of the whole package, especially with the added grip strap GS-5.
The first thing I did when I got this lens was to just play with the controls and features, and get familiar with it. The snap focus ring is wonderful! It works just like the 12-40 Pro does, but is less likely to accidentally move into manual mode on the 40-150, due to the extra length of the lens.
The lens hood is also impressive, by the way you can slide it down for storage, or while not in use, and then quickly extend it outward for shooting. The only bad feature in this process is, when the hood is retracted back for storage, and you set the camera and lens down (with no tripod adapter in use), sideward force on the lens hood causes it to wobble on the barrel of the lens! Very Distracting! This could have been eliminated (or the affect lessened) by increasing the diameter of the zoom ring (and possibly the focus ring), which the hood wobbles against. But this has not caused a negative attitude about this lens hood! This hood has been well designed with the photographer in mind.
This lens takes really good photos! Very Sharp Images, with great colors, and great contrast. The quality of images matches the quality of the 12-40 Pro lens, or exceeds the 12-40. I mainly have shot subjects at close focus distances, and apertures from f/5.6 to about f/14. When you place your subject close (4 to 8 feet) to the lens (say a person’s face, or a blooming flower, etc) you sometimes need a smaller aperture to get proper depth of focus in the image. If I shoot a shot at 10 to 15 feet, or more, I will be going to f/2.8, f/4 or f/5.6 to get shallower depth of focus, so stuff closer to my subject will go out of focus quicker, especially since I will be zoomed out to the 100-150mm range for that shot.
Needless to say, the 40-150 mm Pro quickly becomes a fun lens to shoot with, having a great zoom range, as well as excellent sharpness from f/22 to an amazing f/2.8! Throw in the snap manual focus feature and a wonderful lens hood, and I cannot imagine a better set-up. (unless of course, it was Free)
And then there is Cost… $1500 is a Lot of money, offset by the value of what you get. This lens is Packed with value though!! First, it is an All Metal, Fully Weather Sealed lens. That suits me perfectly. I don’t desire cheaper plastic parts where possible; I Desire Quality. I would never have bought my original OM-1 film camera if it had been made with a plastic body!
Second, this lens sports an internal zoom design; the lens stays the same length All through the zoom range! This is my First lens of this type... I was surprised when I zoomed out to 150mm, and the lens did not stretch out. I really like that feature.
Lastly, this lens has the 9-circular blade aperture design. The 40-150 Pro will give truer circular highlights than the 40-150 f/4.0-5.6, or the 14-150 markII lenses, because of the 9 blades. (I’ve owned both those lenses; the 40-150 f/4.0-5.6 I sold because I did not want a lens with a plastic lens mount; the 14-150 II lens I really like, due to its super re-design of the lens, and it produces great images. I will always have that lens and this 40-150 Pro.)
But still, it is an expensive lens. The quality of the 40-150 Pro justifies the cost to me. I’m getting what I paid for. I wish Olympus had a system like Amazon, where you could go buy a gift card, and deposit into your Olympus account. That’s one method I use, to help save up for a costly item.