Sunday, 21 February 2010

micro 4/3: where are the compact lenses

I've been waiting to see if Olympus actually make something great with their announcement of a micro 4/3 version of their 9-18mm zoom.

Sadly, looking on DPReview this morning I don't see that they have:


Ok, it looks compact while its folded in and unable to be used, but to me the amount of extension happening makes it look like a flimsy mechanism and I prefer the Oly 9-18mm for 4/3.

I've been using that on my G1, which you can see shown here on the adaptor beside the very compact 14-45mm


Really this new lens is quite a joke, as my regular 4/3 Olympus 9-18mm even with its adaptor looks to be about the same size. So now to use the lens you'll have to unlock it turn the collar to wind it out and turn on your camera.

The old one via adaptor was at least faster and seems to be the same optical design looking at the lengths of this. Reading the specifications on this saying that:

57 x 50mm and 155g - new lens
79,5 x 73mm and 280g - old lens

reminds me a bit of the amplifier specification wars. While a professional level Yamaha claims 100W RMS per channel some chintzy home theater amp for 1/3 the price claims 200W but don't tell you proudly that this is the sum of all the channels and at Peak (a more attractive number not as meaningful as RMS).

I'm sure looking at the extension in those pictures above that with the lens ready to use that the lens will be at least 79,5mm as it is only 40% shorter in spec and the pictures seem to show it doubling its length.

Perhaps the reviews will tell a different story, but until I get my hands on one I'm thinking its just poor.


Lens Bubbles said...

Olympus can indeed create some magnificient lenses, but for whatever reason, they have decided to make some me too lenses. Where are the small and FAST primes? With the micro 4/3's extremely short lens register, they can make 25mm (50mm-e) f1.0 lens with little trouble if they want to. But none of the primes Olympus makes so far are fast then f2.8.

It's time that Olympus need to wake up and be different. Make something that nobody else has differentiate themselves from the me-too crowd.

Soundimageplus said...

Yes I've got the 14-42 kit lens, which is a decent lens. Looks great on the camera when its "folded away" but then out comes this telescope contraption which makes it look cheap and nasty. Then you have to fold it away again.
I wonder about the longevity of something like this.

The new 9-18 does look a bit better and its quite light but its still got this extending thing going on.

One of the nice things about the Panasonic 7-14 is its WYSIWYG.Though the large bulbous element does move backwards and forwards. Also since there's no way to get a protection filter on it I do fear for its safety sometime.