Olympus 12mm review and 45mm first look.

The video on top is made by Steve Huff. This is really one of the must have lens (like the 20mm f/1.7 lens). It’s relatively cheap but with imrpessive performance. As Steve says: “I will have a review soon but I can already tell you that I love it and feel it is well worth the $399 investment.” You can check price and availability of the lens by clicking those links: Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.

There is a new Olympus 12mm lens test at Photoreview (Click here): “Imatest testing showed the review lens to be a good, though not stellar, performer on the basis of JPEG files from the PEN E-PL3. Best performance was at f/2.5. There was a gradual decline in resolution from f/5.6 on as apertures were reduced“.
The lens is in Stock at Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.

For US readers: The Panasonic 20mm pancake got another $10 price drop It is in Stock for $339 at Amazon (Click here).

New reviews of all three new PEN cameras!

Cameralabs (Click here) posted the full Olympus E-P3 review: “The most flattering thing I can say about the Olympus Pen E-P3 is that I would definitely take it on holiday again. In terms of portability and general handling there’s very little to find fault with. As I was travelling, I decided against taking additional lenses and found the M Zuiko Digital 14-42mm f3.5-5.6 II R kit lens proved to be really versatile and produced excellent results.” With an overall score of 83% the camera gets Recommended!

ThePhoBlographer (Click here) posted a new Olympus E-PM1 review: “This is a camera that us camera geeks can probably give to the less tech savvy members in the family providing we don’t mind wanting to play the role of tech support specialist. For the younger user that actively makes a camera a part of their life, they’ll become smitten with this camera. For the older generations, I’m not too sure what to say. My mother did figure it out when I walked her through it, but ended the session with, “Next you need to show me how to upload the photo to the computer.”

DC.watch (Click here) tested the Olympus E-P3.

Photoreview (Click here) posted the E-PL3 review and earned a good rating of 8.5/10: “Low-light performance was generally good with long exposures using ISO settings up to 1600, where image noise started to become apparent. Resolution began to decline from ISO 1600 on and noise was apparent at ISO 3200, although shots remained printable up to A4 size. By ISO 6400, noise was quite obvious in long exposures and at ISO 12800, colour reproduction was affected and images were blotchy and unsharp.

Also Digitalcamerareview (Click here) tested the E-PL3: “If you want a compact camera with articulating LCD, a great selection of lenses and very good image quality, the E-PL3 is a smart choice. However, you have to put up with a camera that is downright “painful” to hold, displays a relatively tiny image on only part of the LCD, lacks a built-in flash, and doesn’t deliver noise-free high ISO.

Those are the search shop links to all three new PEN cameras. Click on it to check price and availability:
Olympus E-P3 Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.
Olympus E-PL3 Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.
Olympus E-PM1 Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.

Double Panasonic X 14-42mm lens review!

You can now read the first Panasonic 14-42mm X lens review at ePrice (Click here for the google english translation). The image on top is enough to make me say WOW what a lens! A month ago would you ever have thought it would be possible to make a zoom lens that has almost the size of the 20mm f/1.7 pancake? I guess the answer is NO! ePrice posted a couple of image samples and some youtube videos. And if the google translation tool is annoying you to much there is another good news. The guys over at Clubsnap (Click here) wrote a short 14-42mm X lens preview in native English! More image samples have been posted by Reality Scanner here on Flickr.

Overall I am impressed by this lens. Image samples do look very good, powerzoom is smooth and responsive and it’s so tiny! I already preordered this lens which will be available soon in October!

Here are the direct search links to Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.

And below you can find all the shops I usually check to see if a the lens is in Stock:

Australia: CameraPRO, Amazon, BHphoto, Digitalrev, eBay.au
Austria: Amazon.at, Calumetphoto.de, Fotomundus, eBay.at
Belgium: Calumetphoto.be, Redcoon.be, Amazon.co.uk, eBay.be
Canada: Newegg.ca, Amazon.ca, Olympus Canada, TheCameraStore, B&H, eBay.ca
China: Digitalrev, Amazon.cn, eBay
Denmark: eBay
Finland: eBay
France: Amazon.fr, eBay.fr
Germany: Amazon.de, Calumetphoto.de, Fotomundus, eBay.de
Hong Kong: Digitalrev, eBay, Amazon, B&H
Ireland: Amazon.uk, WexUK, eBay.ie
Italy: Amazon.it, eBay.it
Japan: Amazon.jp, DigitalRev, eBay
Netherlands: Calumet.nl, Amazon.co.uk, eBay.nl
Norway: eBay
Poland: Redcoon.pl, eBay
Singapore: Digitalrev, eBay
Spain: Amazon.es, Redcoon.es, eBay.es
Sweden: eBay
Switzerland: Amazon.de, Calumetphoto.de, eBay.ch
United Kingdom: Amazon.uk, Jessops, WexUK, eBay.uk
United States: Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay

More Nikon versus Micro Four Thirds articles!

Cnet Asia (Click here) wrote a first take test about the new Nikon 1 V1 and clearly said that it cannot compete against m43: “The company tells us it aims to target entry-level users with the introduction of the J1 and V1. But we wonder if compact upgraders will choose Nikon over other brands such as Panasonic’s feature-rich Lumix series and Sony’s NEX series with their larger APS-C sensors. In an already crowded ILC segment, Nikon will need a clear marketing strategy in order to reach out to shutterbugs. ” You can see an image quality comparison on their Website.

Laurence Kim (Click here) says the Nikon is an epic fail: “My guess is that 5 years from now, Nikon’s lineup will not equal what m4/3 has available today.

Image Quality comparison at EosHD (Click here). It includes a G3 vs V1 comparison.

Nikon V1 vs Olympus PEN E-P3 vs Sony NEX-7 at Techradar (Click here): “The Olympus PEN E-P3, at the moment, seems to offer the best compromise. It has neither the biggest or smallest sensor, offers a decent range of lenses, has nifty features such as the touchscreen and comes in at the best price.

I repeat once again, I am certainly not a fanboy when I am say I do not like the new Nikon’s. Will it sell well? The new Sony NEX cameras made it into the top twenty of the Amazon Bestseller (or preorder) ranking (Click here to read the list). Just to say that it’s not just me and the reviewers being bad to Nikon 🙂

Full Olympus E-PM1 review at ePhotozine.

There is a new complete E-PM1 review at ePhotozine (Click here): “Image quality of the Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1 is excellent with excellent detail from the 12 megapixel sensor, with low noise and great colour. The PEN Mini E-PM1 is the most compact of the Olympus Micro Four Thirds cameras yet still gives you fairly quick access to controls through on screen functions, and three of the rear buttons can be customised“.

The camera gets “Highly Recommended” by the reviewer! Also the German website Digitalkamera (Click here) tested the E-PM1 and they seem to like it a lot.

The E-Pm1 is the last of the three new PEN cameras that are now in Stock. Check at Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay. Time for a new PEN Oly! Where is my digital Olympus 35? 😉