- Depictive performance that delivers feathered bokeh and outstanding resolution when shooting at f/1.2. This provides a 3-dimensional impression of your main subject, isolating it from the overall softened background due to the smooth transition from the sharp to the defocused areas of the image.
- Fast, high precision auto-focusing. Both lenses provide virtually silent and smooth high-speed focusing performance, even when using the maximum aperture of f/1.2 and work incredibly well with the Face Priority or Eye Priority AF modes.
- Lightweight, yet rugged construction. Each lens provides dust proof, splash proof and freeze-proof performance.
- Excellent close-up shooting. The 17mm f/1.2 PRO has a minimum working distance of 20cm while the 45mm f/1.2 PRO has a minimum working distance of 50mm.
- Premium design. All three lenses in the f/1.2 family are designed with the professional photographer in mind with a large focusing ring that allows for easy switching between auto and manual focusing by simply pulling back on the MF clutch. A programmable Lens Function button is also included.
Impressions of the New Olympus 17mm and 45mm f/1.2 PRO Lenses
Disclosure: I am an Olympus Visionary and as such, receive compensation from Olympus America. However, no compensation was paid for this review. I endorse their products because I truly believe in the quality of their gear.
In late 2016 Olympus announced the 25mm f/1.2 PRO - an incredibly fast and sharp lens with beautiful feathered bokeh. For the past year that lens has been pacing the waiting room anticipating the delivery of two promised siblings - the 17mm and 45mm f/1.2 lenses. The wait is now over.
As an Olympus Visionary I was recently provided the opportunity to work with both the 17 and 45mm lenses at a press event in Charleston, SC alongside respected journalists and reviewers in the industry. After a few days of shooting I walked away (actually flew away) with a thoroughly positive impression of both lenses. They meet or exceed all of the claims made by Olympus. So what are those claims?
When Olympus released their flagship E-M1 model back in 2013 it made quite a splash. Reviewers and photographers of all stripes were thoroughly impressed with its feature-packed design. Three years later it is still a highly-regarded camera, but alas, it's time for an upgrade. After spending some time working with the new OM-D E-M1 Mark II, I have no doubt that Olympus has another success on their hands.
Before I get into any details, I must provide two important qualifiers. First, this is not a technical review. It is a 'first impressions' write-up with a few supporting details and a lot of comparison to its predecessor, the E-M1. Secondly, all of the information in this post is based on a pre-production model of the camera.
If you would rather watch a quick summary of the E-M1 Mark II, check out my video description below.
The OLYMPUS OMD E-M10 MARK II and 12mm F/2.0 LENS
As an Olympus Trailblazer I have the remarkable opportunity to shoot with practically any camera body and lens that Olympus makes. As a nature/landscape photographer I admit that I usually turn to one of the weather-sealed options from Olympus - either the E-M1 or the E-M5 II. After all, I often find myself in weather conditions that may not be favourable. So why am I writing a post on the E-M10 II and 12mm f/2.0? Quite honestly, more and more often I find myself reaching for this exceptional combination.
Like most photographers I am always excited to try out a new lens, but the new 300mm PRO lens from Olympus is one that I’ve been eagerly looking forward to for over two years. I had the opportunity to shoot with the lens for a few days before the official announcement. Here are my thoughts, but be forewarned, this is not a technical review, rather more of an information piece with some of my first impressions thrown in.
Let's start by saying, "I don't write camera reviews." I leave that to the more technically inclined. This post is more of a "camera impression" and the reason I write it is because a few nights ago I was at a get together with some friends. I pulled out my TG-4, immersed it in my friend's pool and began shooting. Most of the people at this shindig had never seen a camera that could do this. When I showed them the resulting images they were quite impressed. I am also impressed with the new Olympus Tough TG-4 - the company's latest flagship drop-proof, dust-proof, freeze-proof, crush-proof, water-proof, life-proof camera.
My Top 10 Reasons for being impressed
At the end of January I received a phone call from Richard Pelkowski, Product Manager at Olympus, asking if I would be interested in shooting with a mockup of the new 8mm f/1.8 fisheye lens that Olympus would be releasing this summer. “Of course,” I said enthusiastically! Who wouldn’t agree to that request?
A week later it arrived at my doorstep and several things were immediately noticeable:
Peter Baumgarten is a professional photographer and educator. He is also an Olympus Visionary and NiSi Official Photographer.