DxOmark: “micro 4/3 camera-lens combination is perfectly capable of replacing an APS-C combination”

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Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 12mm f/2.0 gets DxOmarked (Click here): “With its extraordinary sharpness for a micro 4/3 lens, the Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 12mm f/2.0 is a winner.Pitted against the Nikon 1 NIKKOR 10mm f/2.8, this Olympus 12mm holds an overwhelming advantage. Even more impressive is the fact that this lens can compete with much bigger lenses, such as the Canon 24mm L-series mounted on a 7D. In short, it really does seem that a high-quality, fully micro 4/3 camera-lens combination is perfectly capable of replacing an APS-C combination

Honestly, I couldn’t agree more!!!

Olympus 12mm price check: Amazon, Olympus US store, Adorama, B&H, eBay.

P.S.: A couple of days ago they posted the Panasonic 14-42mm X lens review (Click here to read it)

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USA deals roundup (GX1 + $200 off on selected lenses, Sigma for m43 $199)

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The new Sigma 30mm f/2.8 for Micro Four Thirds is now available for preorder at BHphoto (Click here). The price is $199. I don’t know how many of you will buy that lens :)

A much more interetsign offer is the $200 rebate on selected lenses when purchasing the GX1 body at BHphoto (Click here).

And don’t forget that Olympus launched a massive price drop on many cameras and lenses:

PEN rebates

$50 price drop on all Olympus E-P3 bodies and kits at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$100 price drop on the Olympus E-P3 double lens kits at Adorama (Click here).
$50 price drop on all Olympus E-PL3 bodies and kits at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$100 price drop on the Olympus E-PL3 double lens kits at Adorama (Click here).
$75 price drop on all Olympus E-PM1 bodies and kits at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$125 price drop on the Olympus E-PM1 double lens kits at Adorama (Click here).
$50 price drop on all Olympus 9-18mm lens at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$100 price drop on all Olympus 75-300mm lens at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).

Four Thirds rebates

Olympus E-5 body $100 price drop at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$50 price drop on all Olympus 14-54mm lens at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$100 price drop on all Olympus 70-300mm lens at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
$30 price drop on all Olympus 35mm lens at Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).

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New Olympus E-M5 news roundup…(new E-M5 accessories and info abotu Four Thirds lens support)

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Olympus E-M5 focus speed test.

There was an ongoing Olympus press meetings in Amsterdam and Yokohama and plenty of websites are now publishing new previews and videos. Here is a short roundup of the latest news:

Pen And Tell german report (Click here)
Interview at Akihabara (Click here).
New E-M5 accessories at Olympus Global (Click here and scroll down to see them).
Very basic ISO comparison at Zol (Click here).
E-M5 image samples on Flickr (Click here).

Biofos (Click here) has some news from Olympus UK about the Four Thirds lens support: “No AF improvement on 4/3 lenses I am afraid“. But Olympus made it also clear that they are working on that issue. Their goal is to make Four Thirds lenses fully operable on m43 cameras.

Focus Numerique now removed the ability to download the E-M5 RAW files. Our reader Olaf sent us this: “here is a raw-conversion from me aimed at maximum detail and less texture-smoothing than the internal jpegs, i think it really shows the potential of the E-M5, taken with a 300€ lens at f/1.8!
http://datenkeule.de/dl.php?file=file1329348705olympus-om-d-e-m5-preserie-exemple9.jpg
it is not easy to get the same sharpness olympus is doing with their jpegs while at the same time reducing noise and preserving texture-details.
now here the same file upscaled to 48mp (8000×6000) with a crop of here left eye (eat this nikon D800) ;-)
http://datenkeule.de/dl.php?file=file132934883148mp.jpg
here some crops to compare the potential of texture-preservation compared to the internal jpegs. 2 100% crops with jpeg to the left and the raw conversion to the right:
http://datenkeule.de/dl.php?file=file1329342465jpeg-raw.jpg
http://datenkeule.de/dl.php?file=file1329343823jpeg-raw2.jpg
unfortunately i wasn’t able to save all raws, i only managed to save 4 or 5 of them. maybe i can post some other conversions later, like the one from the bike and the other shot of the woman.

P.S: If you love analyzing RAW files than check Fujirumors (Click here). They just posted the first X PRO 1 raw files!

Full Preorder list:
1) Black E-M5 body at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here), BHphoto (Click here), Warehouse UK (Click here), Redcoon Germany (Click here) and Amazon Japan (Click here).
2) Silver E-M5 body at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here), BHphoto (Click here), Warehouse UK (Click here), Redcoon Germany (Click here), and Amazon Japan (Click here).
3) Black E-M5 body with 14-42mm lens at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here), BHphoto (Click here) and Amazon Japan (Click here).
4) Black E-M5 body with 12-50mm lens at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here), BHphoto (Click here), Jessops (Click here), Redcoon Deutschland (Click here), Amazon Deutschland (Click here) and Amazon Japan (Click here).
5) Silver E-M5 body with 12-50mm lens at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here), BHphoto (Click here), Jessops (Click here), Amazon Deutschland (Click here) and Amazon Japan (Click here).
6) FL-600R wireless flash at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and BHphoto (Click here).
7) MMF-3 Four Thirds adapter at
Amazon (Click here) and Adorama (Click here).
8.) HLD-6 power battery holder at
Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here) and Amazon Japan (Click here).

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Olympus Ex-Chairman and six more people arrested!

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Former Chairman Tsuyoshi Kikukawa and six more people have been arrested in Japan. You can read more about that story at Bloomberg (Click here).

I have not a lot to say, it’s a quite long and complicated story. The real important news will arrive at the emergency shareholder meeting on April 20 at which investors will vote on a new management. And soon we will also know who will become the new partner from Olympus. Sony, Samsung, Fuji or Panasonic are particularly interested in the medical business from Olympus. Effects on the camera business will probably be very marginal.

Reminder: First Voigtländer Nokton 17.5mm f/0.95 preorders in Europe at eBay (Click here).

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Hands-on with the new Voigtländer Nokton 17.5mm lens (with preorders in Europe)

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With all that Olympus E-M5 buzz we don’t have to forget that there has been another very exciting new introduction. The new Voigtländer Nokton 17.5mm f/0.95 lens! The Spanish website DSLRmagazine (Click here) posted a short hands-on article and video (the one you see here on top). That lens is twice as luminous as the Leica 35mm f/1.4 (and costs many times less). Valentin Sama says the lens has a top notch build quality (as expected) and the new pull down aperture ring which allows smooth rotation is completely noise-free (super news for filmmakers). The focusing ring is very long which is a good news if you want a precise focusing, bad news when you are in hurry :)  The only major difference with the also superb Voigtländer Nokton 25mm f/0.95 is the major size and weight of the lens (See size comaprison here). What I haven’t found yet are image samples. Did you?

A first preorder is available here in Europe on eBay (Click here). The lens should ship by late March /early April.

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