(FT5) UPDATED: There will be fast m43 lenses and new Four Thirds products too.

Image on top: The Olympus E-30 that could be replaced by a new model in 2011.

The chinese website Tech.sina interviewed the ex Olympus chief Mr. Watanabe (Click here to read the google english translation). The translation is quite terrible so I would be glad if some Chinese reader could confirm the news I am going to post here. Mr Watanabe added following interesting info:
1) Mr. Watanabe mentioned that Oly understands that consumers are waiting for large aperture M4/3 lenses, please look forward to this as Oly will bring out a few products that responds to this request. 43rumors note: The new bright lenses should be announced in late June.
2) There will be new Four Thirds product too. Both the single digit and double digit series will continue. The triple digit series has been officially replaced by the PEN cameras. 43rumors note: We heard the Olympus E-30 has been discontinued (Check at: Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay). So this could be the first camera to be replaced by a new model.
3) Watanabe believes the Fuji X100 is a good product but Olympus will not develop a similar product. 43rumors note: Fuji is a Four Thirds group member but has not released any 43 product yet. The Fuji X100 is available for preorder at J&R (Click here), Adorama (Click here), Amazon UK (Click here) and Digitalrev (Click here) and if you are willing to pay a huge extra than you can buy them in Stock on eBay (Click here).
4) Like Pentax did also Olympus will offer more color option in future cameras. 43rumors note: The Pentax K-r series has been quite popular because of the huge color options.

UPDATE: Our chinese readers helped us to highlight a few other points:
5) This P&E show in China will be focused on M4/3 as Olympus think China is a still a virgin market for EVILs (less than 10% market share)
6) Mr. Watanabe mentioned that Olympus is a camera manufacturer, unlike Sony and Panasonic who makes lots of consumer electronis products, so Oly products will be more like a real camera instead.(when being asked what he thinks of Oly EVILs might be more competitive than SONY or Pana etc. EVIL products)
7) Mr. Watanabe mentioned that XZ-1 has been selling really well world wide. Oly is happy.

I have to admit that I didn’t expect Olympus to continue the E-XX series. Let’s hope Olympus will not let us wait to much before to see some of the mentioned new products!

P.S.: An update about the not yet available Samyang 35mm f/1.4 Four Thirds lens. Samyang delayed the shipment start from March to April. That’s why you can’t find it on eBay yet. It should be available soon under the different names (Click on it to see the search results on eBay):
Samyang Walimex Rokinon Opteka Falcon Vivitar Bower

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

The Megapixel race (Sony making a NEX-7 with 24 Megapixel)

Panasonic is going to announce the new G3 with 16 Megapixel in May. If you need one more explanation why Panasonic and Olympus are not going to stick at 12 Megapixel you might read this: We have been told that Samsung will launch a 18 Megapixel NX20 and NX200 in Summer and Sony’s new NEX-7 will have…drumming….a 24 Megapixel sensor!

As you see the Megapixel racing is still ongoing and it doesn’t sound like there is an end insight. Maybe next year Panasonic will make a 20 Megapixel sensor for the GH3?

More info about the upcoming cameras from the competition
NX20 and NX200 at MirrorlessRumors (Click here).
NEX-7 at SonyAlphaRumors (Click here).

(FT4) Olympus 12mm f/2.0 with different design than the mockup.

After yesterdays Olympus lens rumor post a trusted source contacted me to add a little bit of new info. First the lens mockup Olympus showed a few months ago is not the real final lens. The design has been changed! The real final production lens will be a bit more compact. He also confirmed the specs I received from a new sources a while ago. The lens should be a 12mm f/2.0 lens. It’s the first Olympus High-grade lens. It’s very sharp also at f/2.0. Price is unknown yet but the lens will be announced in late June. Panasonic is currently offering a 14mm f/2.5 lens which is very compact and cheap (but not a very high-quality lens). The only faster wide angle lenses are CCTv lenses like the Pentax TV Lens 12mm f/1.2 (Click here to see that on eBay) and the soon coming new SLRmagic lens. But those are very low quality alternatives.

There are two questions I have for you. Try to be fair with your answer ;)

Will you buy the high quality 12mm f/2.0 lens if the price not to high?

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What would be a fair price for the high-quality 12mm f/2.0 Zuiko lens?

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(FT4) Olympus announcement late June? (two lenses for certain!)

By the end of 2010 our sources reassured me that Olympus will introduce quite a lot of interesting new m43 stuff. The good news is that the same sources are still convinced that Olympus will surprise us with some new cool stuff. The bad news is that it might take a bit longer than we have expected. As you can imagine it’s quite difficult yet to talk about product roadmaps. I heard from Sony deleting the new NEX stuff, Panasonic lenses coming in late summer only, and that because of power supply problems in many Japanese plants. According to our sources Olympus will release two of the three planned lenses in late June. They were originally planned to be released in Spring (see the official Olympus lens roadmap on top). Good for us that the lens that will not be announced is the 8mm fisheye! If that rumor turns out to be true than this was definitely a wise decision. We already have the expensive Panasonic 8mm fisheye and now even Samyang is making a cheaper manual 8mm fisheye lens too! To have a third 8mm fisheye really would not make a lot of sense! The other two lenses are high quality primes. One should have a 12mm focal length and the other one around 50mm. We received a few details about those lenses from new sources and I am still trying to get some feedback from trusted sources. If you know something more about those lenses drop me a line at 43rumors@gmail.com or use the contact form on the right sidebar. Thanks!

I am also trying to get more info about the next PEN cameras. There should be two new cameras announced within 2011. Let’s cross the finger!

P.S.: Samyang announced a few months ago that the 35mm f/1.4 Four Thirds mount would hit the market in March. Did you find the lens somewhere beeing in Stock??? All Samyang lenses for Olympus can be found on eBay only and under seven different brand names (Click on it to see all Four Thirds lenses from the specific brand!):
Samyang Walimex Rokinon Opteka Falcon Vivitar Bower

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

(FT5) Small pieces of G3 rumors…(and I am travelling to Antwerp)

A fake and completely unrealistic G3 rendering (but I liked it) Source: Iffo.nl

I am on the road to Antwerp (Belgium) and it will take a few hours (exactly 11 hours drive) until I will be there. I hope I will not find any big traffic jam like the historic Florence jam in December (9 hours stuck in the snow) and the jam in Aachen in late December (4 hours…again snow.). It shouldn’t snow in Belgium at that time :) so I am quite confident I will be at my home in a reasonable time. I am writing this because I will have no Internet connection and comments that do need moderation will have to wait for my arrival.

And here is the news:
I asked my sources if they can give me some more details about the G3. I didn’t get a lot of info. First, the announcement will be made on May 11th (London time) and not on May 12th. Second, I got confirmation that the new 16 Megapixel sensor is NOT a multi aspect sensor. It’s a completely new sensor, but I don’t know yet if Panasonic managed it to improve the noise performance and dynamic range. Third, the design. Confess, you got a heart-attack when you first saw the image on top or not? Like you I am also hoping that Panasonic will sooner or later make a Micro Four Thirds version of the L1/LC1 camera (Click here to see them on eBay). That would kick in the xxx of the Fuji X100 ;). Kill your dreams and let’s go back to the cruel real world. The G3 is not the L1/LC1 copy. Compared to the Panasonic G2 the G3 is…more compact. It’s a bit like the difference between the GF1 and the newer smaller GF2. Panasonic reduced the size, added more touchscreen options and removed some physical controls. Don’t know if you will like that change!
I didn’t hear anything yet about possible new “revolutionary” features and honestly I don’t think there will be spectacular surprises. The real new thing here is the 16 Megapixel sensor and the new design.

For the rest I am still trying to get some info about the next Olympus PEN. Sounds like it’s not in the near future (next 2-3 months). Don’t know yet if there was a delay or whatever. The good news is that I started to receive some info about the lenses. I am double-triple checking the specs with other sources. As usual if you can help me with rumors contact me at 43rumors@gmail.com or use the contact form on the right sidebar. You can avoid to send me your name and contact address and no IP-address gets stored. Thanks!

Links to the cameras discussed in that post:
UPDATE -> Link fixed: The dreamers camera, the LC1 search results at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay (don’t know if you can find it in Stock)
The older but very popular Panasonic GF1 at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.
The newer more compact and touchscreen Panasonic GF2 at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.
The Panasonic G2 at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.

P.S.: Message for Panasonic: take a look at the crazy expensive Fuji X100 auctions on eBay (Click here). You might get an idea why we want the LC1 back :)

P.P.S.: First 43rumors mini-meeting in Antwerpen (Belgium) on Saturday 23 April at 15.00. Location: Bar 2 (Vrijdagmarkt). For those of you that want to participate please drop me an email at 43rumors@gmail.com.