New cheap Micro Four Thirds lenses coming from China…

Image source: xinhuanet

Zhongyi Optics from China is developing a 28mm f/2.8 lens for Micro Four Thirds, which will have a 4 group and 5 lenses design. Price will be around CNY 500 (around 80 USD).

We already have a few cheap chinese manual m43 lenses:
SLRmagic 26mm f/1.4 eBay (Click here) SLR Magic 35mm f/1.7 eBay (Click here) Loreo lenses on eBay (Click here)

(FT4) Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 almost as big as the kit lens.

One of our sources told us the upcoming Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 Micro Four Thirds lens will be almost as big as the current Panasonic 14-42mm kit lens. If the rumor turns out to be true than the size will be a bit more than we expected (or hoped) to be for a lens that is “rumored” to come without in lens stabilization (OIS). It has almost double the size of the Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 lens pancake. We still don’t have the 100% certain specs so I hope there is room for a surprise that can explain the size (a bit faster than f/1.4? Incredible image quality? or last moment added OIS?). The lens is expected to be announced late March/early April.

Links:
– I used the awesome Four Thirds matching simulation to compare the lens size!
– The Four Thirds Panasonic/Leica 25mm f/1.4 lens (which should have almost double the size compared to the little Micro Four Thirds sister)
– The Panasonic 20mm pancake at Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay

UPDATE: Samsung doesn’t make any big secret about their lens roadmap and they just announced 5 new NX lenses (Click here to read more at MirrorlessRumors.com)

Why 2011 is the Year of Olympus (Zone-10). Weatherproof PRO M43 and Foveon camera coming?

So, after reading Thom Hogans opinion about Olympus future you might want to read a second opinion from Khen Lim at Zone-10. He mixed up history and speculations to give us a positive vision about Olympus upcoming products. He expects a lot from the Olympus pro-m43 camera but this are a mix of hopes and speculations so take it with a grain of salt! In short he expects a super tank built weatherproof PEN camera:

What is particularly interesting with Yamaki’s (Sigma) announcement was his company’s intention to develop its own interpretation of the mirrorless camera around the Foveon sensor.
The generation after the 1’s (E-P1/E-PL1/E-PL1s) and the 2’s (E-P2/E-PL2) will unfold Olympus’ bigger picture but we’ve already seen some of the company’s ideas in the form of that accessory slot behind the Pen’s hotshoe. That slot is going to be big business in many ways for Olympus but that’s not all.
“The diminutive XZ-1 also holds plenty of clues too. This is not a camera from a company that is shrinking away from the business. It is a bold move from one that is, instead, confident of where it wants to head.”
“In separate closed-door meetings with the two Germany companies (Zeiss and Schneider), Olympus would have shed light on to its future development roadmap, talked more keenly about its next generation of Pen cameras and the lenses they have now lined up. In and amongst all of these, Olympus would have revealed to the Germans at least the specs if not the pro-grade Pen prototype in the flesh. The Japanese would have discussed not just the E-P3 but the P4 and P5 and the plans they have to take the lead in this new market.”
Despite accusations that Olympus doesn’t listen to its users, some of us actually believe they do. Like Panasonic, Olympus keeps track of several key websites and blogsites throughout the Internet world, establishing a global communiqué with its key subsidiaries, each of whom has site coverage to closely monitor and find out about the movements on the ground. However while Panasonic is quick to respond, Olympus appears more sluggish to the point where people actually believe they’re not listening. Rest be assured they are, they do and they have been.
Olympus introduce weatherproofing to Pen camera . Olympus’ next-generation pro-grade Pen cameras will be nothing less than tank-built in quality. You’d be able to feel that quality in the palm of your hand.

Let’s hope Zone-10 is right and Olympus will really bring some major innovation. And honestly I would love if Sigma would make a foveon m43 camera!

Links:
Current Sigma foveon cameras at Amazon
– The newest foveon model the SD1 at BHphoto.

(FT5) Panasonic G3 (and new lenses?) by end of March/early April

The 25mm f/1.4 lens for Four Thirds will soon have a little Micro Four Thirds sisther :)

Now we now it for SURE (99%) that the new Panasonic G3 will be announced by late March/early April. As we already told you the new body looks different than current G cameras, but the new design will not have a DMC-LC1/L1 look!). The G3 has a new sensor and can take FullHD videos (but not at 24mbit/s like the new GH2). Let’s hope the G3 will not have the delay of the GH2 and the GF2 (In US only the Silver GF2+14mm lens is in Stock at Adorama (Click here)) and the GH2 is still missing.

We didn’t get any FT5 confirmation that the 25mm f/1.4 will be announced along the G3 but I would say it is FT4 (please read the explanation about the rumor classification at the bottom of the page!). We know the 25mm lens will not feature in lens stabilization and unlike the Four Thirds version the lens will NOT be Leica branded!

But there also could be one more lens coming (that’s FT4). We hope to know more about it soon.

Links:
– The current Leica branded 25mm Four thirds lens at Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay and Amazon.
– The 5 Megapixel DMC-LC1 at ebay and the 7 Megapixel DMC-L1 at Amazon.

Reminder: Rumors classification explained (FT= FourThirds):
FT1=1-20% chance the rumor is correct
FT2=21-40% chance the rumor is correct
FT3=41-60% chance the rumor is correct
FT4=61-80% chance the rumor is correct
FT5=81-99% chance the rumor is correct

When will Elicar release that lens?

Image courtesy: Photoscala.de

Ok Zeiss, Schneider and Cosina will make Micro Four Thirds lenses but there is also one more small company that will join the group. At photokina 2010 the japanese company Elicar showed that 4,5-6,3/300-600 Micr Four Thirds lens prototype. So what happened since then? Did you got some news about when the lens will be available?

Elicar already made lenses for Olympus OM, Canon FL and Minolta mount. You can see a list of lenses at eBay (Click here).