December 6, 2011
Posted in news

(UPDATED) Investigative panel report is out: “Olympus top management was rotten”

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The investigative panel published their Olympus report (Source: Reuters). UPDATE: You can download the pdf here.

Summary: Olympus had a huge speculation loss in the nineties. To cover the losses (and save Olympus?) Hideo Yamada and Hisashi Mori elaborated a “loss separation scheme” to hide the losses ($1.7 Million $) in acquisitions and fees. The report states that part of the management was aware of that (“rotten”), but that there is no link to the organised crime. That damaged the shareholders and the report clearly says that “fraudulent accounting” has been done. The report clearly advice the responsible managers to resign. In short, a revolution is needed.

The reaction of the market has been positive. Olympus shares had jumped as much 9% percent today (Source: Bloomberg). The main reasons for the jump is the chance that Olympus will not be delisted at the Tokyo exchange and that part of the board will probably have to resign.

But here is the “bad” question to you: What if they tried to hide the losses to keep the Olympus business alive? Wondering if Olympus would have survived if they wouldn’t have done that “loss separation scheme”.

December 6, 2011
Posted in news

a little bit of everything…


Teaser on a project about Sevillanos universe shot by Steph on GH2 with Voigtländer 0.95 and Noktor 12mm.

An Olympus camera sculpture at Henry Road.

OLYMPUS SH-21 12.5x optical zoom, High-sensitivity shooting, Touch shot (Olympus Global).

GF2 with Olympus 45mm lens samples at Google Plus.

Will Canon buy Olympus? (Zone-10).

The Panasonic GF1 – A Landmark Camera by KJ Vogelius (SteveHuff).

New aluminium grips for the E-P3 (DC.watch).

Mitmachen: Lumix Festival für jungen Fotojournalismus 2012 (Photoscala).

 

December 5, 2011
Posted in Rumors

(FT4) First Schneider Kreuznach Micro Four Thirds lenses coming at Photokina 2012!


A source just sent me the first info about the future Schneider Kreuznach Micro Four Thirds lenses. Schneider will offer a “range of lenses for the MFT-System starting Photokina 2012. Details will be announced in the first half of 2012“. Thanks to the anonymous source for sending me this! Keep us up to date with your “rumors” ;)

So we don’t know yet what kind of lenses they will announce but it is good to hear that they will offer a “range of lenses” suggesting that there will be many of them! I don’t know if these lenses will be mainly “cine lenses” like the one offered by Zeiss or more “photographic lenses”. Schneider has a long history of high quality lenses for Large and Medium format cameras. Currently Schneider isn’t making many lenses for the “pure” digital photography system. There are only two for Canon/Nikon/Sony:
PC TS Super-Angulon 50mm f/2.8 Lens (Click here to see on eBay).
PC TS Super Angulon 90mm f/4.5 Lens (Click here to see on eBay).

But Schneider also made many C-mount, FD, SL and M42 mount lenses in the past. Here are some of them:
Xenon 16mm f/1.2 (Click here to see on eBay).
Xenon 25mm f/0.95 (Click here to see on eBay).
Curtagon 35mm f/2.8 (Click here to see on eBay).
Componon 50mm f/1.4 (Click here to see on eBay).
Xenon 50mm f/1.9 (Click here to see on eBay).
Xenar 50mm f/2.8 (Click here to see on eBay).
Xenar 75mm f/3.5 (Click here to see on eBay).
Xenotar 80mm f/2.8 (Click here to see on eBay).
Xenar 180mm f/2.8 (Click here to see on eBay).

I am sure Schneider completely new designed and high quality lenses. But just to make them know in what kind of lens you would prefer:

What of the current C-mount lenses would you love to see in native MFT version? (3 votes max)

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In February 4 Schneider announced their membership of the m43 standard. And that was the press release:

SCHNEIDER KREUZNACH now a member of the Micro Four Thirds System Standard Group
BAD KREUZNACH, 4 February 2011. Schneider-Kreuznach has joined the “Micro Four Thirds System Standard Group” – a consortium of companies with the objective of improving the possibilities and quality of compact digital cameras. Developed by Olympus and Panasonic, “Micro Four Thirds” is a standard for lens mounts that is tailored to digital system cameras. “This standard has great potential. It simplifies and improves the options for compact digital cameras and offers an excellent opportunity for the industry as a whole, as well as for us as a lens manufacturer. We are working intensively on a corresponding series of lenses,” says Dr. Josef Staub, CEO of the Schneider Group.
The standard defines the sensor size, the lens mount together with the communication protocol, the aspect ratio and the flange back distance, as well as the optical requirements for production and construction. The industry standard has been developed deliberately without taking into account conventional lenses, cameras or sensor sizes. In this way, compatibility problems with older components are avoided as is the need to compromise when designing new components.
The forum standard policy means that any member company can make and distribute accessories for the system that meet the standard. It is therefore possible to combine components from different manufacturers.

Download the press release from Schneider (.pdf)

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

December 5, 2011
Posted in news

Olympus hid up to $1.7 billion

A short update about the Olympus fee scandal. As you know it’s a crucial month for Olympus. They have to release their financial report within December 14 otherwise they will be delisted from the Tokyo exchange. And tomorrow the the investigative panel will release their report about the Olympus fee scandal. But first bit of info are already coming out. Reuters reports: “An investigative panel has found Japan’s disgraced Olympus Corp hid up to $1.67 billion in losses from its investors, but is likely to say there is no evidence of involvement by organized crime in the cover-up, a source said Monday.

As I said before, I am crossing the fingers for Olympus. Let’s hope 2012 can be the year where Olympus can restart with new energy and clear ideas from the management!

 

December 4, 2011
Posted in reviews

New reviews roundup…(E-P3 is camera of the year).

Tokyo Storm from Andrew Reid on Vimeo.

The Olympus E-Pm1 gets tested at DigitalcameraInfo (Click here): “In our select awards we named the flagship model of this line, the Olympus E-P3, the mirrorless camera of the year. If you’re looking to save some cash and don’t mind compromising on color accuracy, the quality of the LCD, and the lack of an included grip (or if you simply want a smaller camera), then the E-PM1 is an acceptable alternative.“.
Also Reghardware (Click here) tested the Olympus camera: “With the E-PM1 Olympus has released a sexy, versatile, pocketable camera that manages to bring increased ease-of-use to the PEN family without sacrificing the creative and technical performance of its more expensive models“.
Get the camera at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

ThePhoBlographer (Click here) reviewed the Olympus 45mm f/1.8 lens: “Overall, I can’t help but recommend the Olympus 45mm f1.8 lens. It should be the portrait lens in the bag of every single Micro Four Thirds camera user and I will not retract or take that statement back“.
Lens price check at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

Photoreview (Click here) got their hands on the Panasonic 45-175mm X lens: “Imatest testing showed the review lens to be a first-class performer on the basis of JPEG files from the G3 used for our tests. It was well able to match expectations for the camera’s 15.8-megapixel sensor and produced resolution that was slightly above expectations at several focal lengths“.
The X lens is in Stock at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay.

According to Photofocus (Click here) the Olympus E-P3 is the camera of the year: “While Olympus as a company is going through some significant challenges right now, their cameras are first rate regardless.”
Get the camera at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

P.S.: Japanese SLR magic 12mm review at jintarow.

 

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