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(UPDATED: FT5) Busted? No 40-150mm f/2.8 coming…


Image on top shows the current Panasonic 35-100mm f/2.8 X lens lens.There is no f/2.8 from Olympus now.

For three weeks now rumors are floating around the web saying Olympus would launch a 40-150mm f/2.8 lens. That rumor has been circulating for a relatively long time before I decided to pick it up and post it with a FT3 value on 43rumors. Finally a trusted source contacted me to say that there will be no new 40-150mm f/2.8 lens. He said that this lens is not on the roadmap of Olympus for 2013.

UPDATE: Two more trusted sources confirmed the rumor is false. One of them also said “something else” is coming soon.

Certainly a fast zoom is something we are missing from Olympus. That 40-150mm rumor may was part of a collective subconscious need of fast zooms :)  Good that we still have some trusted sources bringing our feet to ground. By the way, the source only added one more info. There is really a LOT(!) to come from Olympus the next few months!

The two superb Zuiko f/2.0 zooms:
14-35mm f/2.0 on eBay (Click here) and via Slidoo eBay.
35-100mm f/2.0 on eBay (Click here) and via Slidoo eBay.

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


  • still expecting real telephoto lens: 50-200/2.8, 100-300/4, 300/4, 400/5.6 .. and when wakes sigma?

    • Anonymous

      Sigma will not produce any lens specificaly for u43, anything they bring out will be adapted from NEX at best.

      I like the wishfull thinking of a 50-200 as there appears no 40-150 will come but I fear that will have the same problems as has been mentioned before, physical size, for that speed there has to be a price in size of front element, which is probably why there will not be a 40-150, shame but there we have it.

      • Hubertus Bigend

        Personally, I’d be quite happy with some longer focal length lenses from Sigma whether they’re also available for Sony E-Mount or not…

        How about a 105/2.8 and/or 150/2.8 Macro for Mirrorless?

        How about a 70-200/2.8 for Mirrorless? Plus a dedicated 2x converter?

        Even if the lenses would not become much smaller than their DSLR counterparts, someone finally has to make such lenses before any mirrorless system can even start to compete with the major DSLR systems.

        Oh, and someone please make a decent 10x-12x superzoom. Until now, there’s only the Panasonic/Leica 14-150 for FT and the huge Canon EF 28-300 L for full frame SLRs. Every other attempt at a superzoom is mediocre at best in comparison.

  • JF

    Not very surprising…Olympus prefers to make silver expensive primes ! too bad yet olympus doesn’t decide to make a high quality standard zoom like the 43 12-60 and a high quality telephoto. That would make a panasonic alternative and the demand is there…

  • Let’s get the hybrid focusing before m43 moves into the fast telephoto realm. There is no real need for a fast telephoto except for BIF and action sports, and we all (should) know by now that a PDAF system isn’t as good as CDAF in these circumstances.
    Lots to come from Olympus? Here’s hoping for focus peaking in the new E-M5 firmware, I also hope they add the video tele-converter from the E-PL5.
    And then of course there’s a RF styled model to come……there’d better be!

    • Ross

      “There is no real need for a fast telephoto except for BIF and action sports”

      You must live in a limited world then. I would use it for concerts, dance socials, academic awards ceremonies etc., school concert events & the list goes on & various other indoor events where some reach is needed. There are lots of uses for a bright telephoto lens up to 200mm in various indoor occasions as well as outdoor use.

      • No, I don’t live in such a limited world, but I see your point. I use an old (& cheap) 200mm F3 MF lens for that sort of thing, or other similar lenses. That said, the high ISO available on newer models makes the slower lenses also viable.
        The problem with bring out a fast telephoto lens for PDAF, is that it won’t have compatible motors for CDAF.
        Would anyone be happy spending (say) $1500 or more on a 150/2.8, only to find it focuses relatively slowly on the next generation camera body? I daresay we’ll be about as happy as the current owners of fast four thirds glass…….
        My guess is that this is the reason we are not seeing fast long glass for m43. It’ll come when they get a hybrid system sorted. In the meantime, look for a MF 180 or 200mm prime. Mine works well (200/3.0 Vivitar Series 1, OM mount).

        • OMega

          I can agree with you DonTom, as for myself I use a 200 f4.0 Zuiko and if required the dedicated 2x on my E-P2, it works very well and have had satisfactory Lunar shots from this set-up. If I want something shorter, at present I use a Zuiko 50 f1.4 again with 2x.

          • That’s a good point about using the doublers if needed.
            @Ross, if you are really wanting a bright telephoto AF lens for those situations, try looking for a used Olympus Zuiko 50-2002.8/3.5. They can be found used for under $1000, and will be more than adequate for your uses if you have an Olympus m43 body with IBIS. You’ll never buy a m43 version for that price, even if they eventually release one, and your kids aren’t getting any younger in the meantime!
            If you have an E-M5, then it’s also the only weather-sealed option, and it may be a surprise performer if they eventually release a hybrid AF system.
            Actually, I think I just persuaded myself…….

        • Rasmus

          I would say fastness is MORE important for long lenses, not less. With a 20mm lens I can shoot handheld at about 1/40 s and get sharp images, and even longer shutter time with IS enabled. With a 300mm I need about 1/600 s to get sharp images. Which means I need a lot more light to stay at lowish ISO, and even at ISO 3200, which I consider of limited usefulness, I need quite a lot of light to keep shutter speeds short.

          And yes, sometimes I can get around this with a tripod, but a faster lens would definitely be very useful, because after all ISO 200 looks a lot better than 3200 and short shutter speeds are not only useful for eliminating camera shake blur. Also, an f2.8 stopped down to f5.6 is likely much sharper than an F5.6 (all long m43 lenses I know of are f5.6 or slower at the long end) wide open and stopping down the f5.6 won’t even do that much to image quality since diffraction starts kicking in even wide open.

        • high ISO may be better in the new generation of cams, but I can see a difference between ISO 200 and 400 that I don’t like, so I always prefer to use ISO as low as possible ;-)

        • Mike H (different one)

          The majority of birds where I live are very small, flit around a lot, only come out in the evening when the light isn’t the best, stay in shadowed areas, make frequent fast movements of their head even when at rest, and won’t let you get near them when at rest.

          Fast and long is an absolute must for me when shooting these birds, which is why I still have my Canon mount Sigma 120-300 f/2.8. I would love to see a 400 f/5.6 or 300 f/4 + 1.4xTC for m4/3rds though. Either would be fantastic for shooting birds.

  • Salty

    Olympus, your current zoom lenses are deeply unimpressive.

    Sort it out!

    • As opposite, their primes are among the best (excepting 75/1.8, which actually is the best).

      • Esa Tuunanen

        Some primes, not even nearly all.
        For example 12mm prime is softer than 12-60mm zoom because of semi fisheye level of geometric distortion… hardly complimenting for prime of that price.

        • The 12mm F2 is a fine lens, and as sharp a wide as there is in the M43 system – check out lens rentals testing, the only place where they average data from multiple copies…

          Sure, its a little overpriced, but the 12-60mm is quite simply ‘something else’ and obviously slower and MUCH MUCH larger.

  • Elf

    Admin do you have any rumors on the Panny GX-2 or working on any….Thanks
    Not surprised about the 40-150. I think right now a lot of OLY rumors are groundless dreaming of OLY fanboys. I like the primes, and don’t mind silver if they make great pictures…. and they do. So what’s not to like.

  • Ren Kockwell


  • Well, guys, you should admit that Panasonic really struggled to make even a 35–100/F2.8 relatively small and optically good, so it wouldn’t be a piece of cake for Olympus to make this in the case of a much longer telezoom.

    • Hubertus Bigend


      So, perhaps, they should stop trying to defy the laws of physics in order to make everything smaller than possible while still preserving quality, and start making good lenses even if they become as big as they need to? That would still be better than not offering such lenses at all, especially since Olympus has effectively stopped FT development, which otherwise could still be an attractive alternative for the telephoto range.

      • Walter

        They did a very sensible thing with 4/3 and divided lenses into three categories:

        SG: Cheap, small, slow, optics as good as they could manage
        HG: Middle cost, as big as they need to be to get performance
        SHG: As big and as pricey as they need to be to get superior performance

    • A small and not too expensive 50-150mm f/2.8-3.5 would be doable and quite welcome.

    • mahler

      If Panasonic can do it, why not Olympus even without OIS?

      • 100 mm and 150 mm long end are a bit different things…

  • chronocommando

    LOL I didnt believe it in first place :-)

  • This particular rumor was never very plausible. Olympus would be stepping on Panasonic’s feet too much (injuring both the 35-100 and the future 150mm in one blow). A slow, sealed, reasonably priced 50-200 makes much more sense in the near future.

    • Michael

      A sealed 50-200 makes more sense, as the longer alternative for the 12-50.

  • If sigma decides to make 2.8 zoom lenses for m4/3 I would be happy. I can see a use for 50-150 2.8 and 10-20 2.8 for m4/3 bodies. Many M4/3 users need afordable alternatives to panasonics 2.8 lenses !

  • lol

    simply because sony is better ;-)

  • Ya I don’t think Olympus is going to be coming out with any great zooms anytime soon. My guess is that they are focusing on primes.

    Speaking of, Any news on my 17mm release date admin????

  • Steve

    It seems Panasonic and Olympus have their own agreement that Panasonic is focusing on more Zooms, and olympus is focusing on more primes. So MFT users can buy both :)

    • beautemps

      +1000 The market is that small. They are coordinating their developments. For sure. And may be, they don’t talk with Sigma as a competitor, and thats why Sigma doesn’t want to risk a redundant development for m43.

    • WSG123

      Indeed, and the Panasonic 12-35 and 35-100 f/2.8 zooms are excellent, as are the Olympus primes. I’m not sure why people are hoping for crossover.

    • Esa Tuunanen

      I wouldn’t call it exactly as Panasonic not making any interesting primes:
      Leica DG 25mm f/1.4 is rather decently priced for quality and being actually fast unlike m.Zuiko 12mm f/2, which is neither super fast, nor high optical performance of its premium price.
      And with rumour about f/1.2 prime Panasonic might be looking to tackle Olympus also in high end primes.

  • mahler

    If Olympus does not pay attention, they will loose the current “pro Olympus” momentum very quickly againn to Panasonic.

    Whereas Panasonic’s achilles heel is the no IBIS bodies, Olympus is the neglect of high quality zooms. The two Panasonic 2.8 zooms have excellent build quality and very good IQ. Together with the 7-14mm Panasonic has the best three zooms of the m4/3 system. Olympus’ record is comparatively lousy: the zooms don’t have the build quality many people want (the zoom rings are often sticky), and image quality lacks often too much. Of course you get waht you pay for it, but there is certainly room for a high quality fast zoom line from Olympus in the range of 900 to 1300 €.

    Currently Olympus strong hold is the E-M5 and the prime lenses. The PENs and the zooms are far less convincing. Again, it seems that Panasonic gains the better differentiated product portfolio with a widec range of distinct enough types of camera bodies, and a very good portfolio if zoom lenses. Primes are the weak point although the rooadmap leaves some hope.

    If there wasn’t the lack of IBIS, Panasonic is close to ruling again the game.

    • But it’s one system! What prevents you from mounting a 12-35 on an E-M5 (or a 12 on a GH3)? Do we really need redundancy?

      • Rasmus

        Nothing prevents anyone to mount the 12-35 on the E-M5, but I suspect that the IS in the lens makes it a bit bigger and heavier than it would have been without it, and also I have the feeling that Olympus are better at weather sealing stuff than Panasonic. After all, how good can the weather sealing be on a lens with external zoom mechanism?

        • I’ve never had problems with my 4/3 zooms (11-22, 14-54, 12-60 and 50-200) and I do use them in rather dusty environments.

      • mahler

        We need competition, alternatives even if it is one system. You may call that redundancy.

  • Jens

    a lot?!
    – Pen 5 with EVF
    – OM-D successor
    -> new sensor ?!

    -> 43 compatible body or a pdaf adapter

    -> If that works, we might not need new zooms necessaryly, because the FT ones will be working?! Then we have the small Panasonic ones and the bigger and faster FTs.

    -> Will we get pdaf on the sensor, like the new NEX cams?

    And can Olympus, Panasonic and Sony agree on one full frame mirroless bayonet and eventually kicks Canikons @ss? :-)

    • Benjamin

      …Why do we need a sucessor of the EM-5 and why do we need a new Sensor? The OM-D can go the next two years, we need lenses…

  • I want such lenses

    14-40/2.8 and 40-150/2.8 will be good combo, if only size won’t be too big for micro43. But if the size will be too big, I accept f/2.8-3.5 to save size and weight.

    There is also need:
    – top prime, like in Canon system 85/1.2 or 50/1.2 – e.g. Zuiko 17/1.2, or 50/1.2, or 50/1.0 or 50/1.2, something with AF (voigtlender is not solution, maybe for movies but not for photos)
    – long prime faster then f/6.7 or f/5.6 – f/2.8 or f/4 will be nice to save weight and size
    – long zoom f/4 (90-250 f/4)
    – small, fast prime wider then 12/2 – maye 10/2
    – UWA prime, eg. 7mm f/2.8
    – tilt/shift at the end (with AF)

    • Mymaco on instagram

      Hahahahahaha Voigtländer is not for pictures?!?! LOL (and btw a T1/f0.95 lens with AF does not exist simply because noone can do it right now)

  • PENfun

    I prefer in micro43 more choice.
    I don’t want new 40-150/2.8. There is 35-100/2.8 in the sysem, and if 40-150/2.8 will be bigger or the same price (or more expensive) I don’t need it.

    The best idea is to make something like 14-54 and 50-200, both f/2.8-3.5. Or 14-40 and 40-150 f/2.8-3.5 – cheaper, lighter, smaller (and without IS) then Panasonic’s zooms. User will have the choice – f/2.8-3.5 (or f/2.8-4) – cheper and smaller, or f/2.8 bigger and more expensive.

    There is no sens to double offer in the same system. Please give us f/2.8-4 zooms, long prime f/4, UWA prime f/2.8, tilt/shift, long zoom f/4, versy fast primes with AF f/1.2 or f/1.0.

  • Timccr

    Personally I find all this encouraging. I just want a weather sealed EP5 with a tilt screen and ultra wide angle prime. They can be dayglo pink for all I care as I want to put them in a Nauticam housing. I am a bit surprised how many other people ask for an ultra wide angle but it seems there is need for one so come on Oly.

    • ph

      +1 for the E-P5 and the UWA.

  • Lily

    To hell with fast zooms, we need a WEATHERSEALED zoom! Come ON Olympus, this hole in your lineup makes no damn sense.

    • mahler

      Panasonic managed to design a small zoom, which is fast and weathersealed. Why not Olympus?

    • Anonymous

      Isn’t the 12-50 weathersealed? :-)

  • UWA

    I want UWA.

    1) for underwater photos – focal lenght is longer underwater – fast prime

    2) for architecture, without distorsion and CA, 10mm f/2.8

    3) 7mm f/2.8 or even 6mm f/2.8 (Sigma can make zoom 12-24 for FF, therefore Oly should be able to make good 6mm prime)

    4) There is lack of watersealed lens. Only 12-50 and 60 macro are watersealed, and 2 zooms from Panasonic. A very, very small…

    • twoomy

      +1000 for UWA! I’d give anything for a high quality prime anywhere between 7-10mm. Heck, even just an updated 9-18mm that has better corner sharpness.

      • bart

        There is a very nice 7-14 from Lumix.

  • Yun

    No Oly 40-150 F2.8 , no problem .
    Then go for Pana incoming 150mm F2.8 .

  • avds

    I don’t find the idea of any significant coordination between Olympus and Panasonic very plausible. There’s a lot of competition between them already. In fact, there are only a few lenses on each side that do not yet compete to any extent, mostly primes, whereas a 40-150/2.8 zoom would not compete with any Panasonic lens being considerably longer than the 35-100. I’m sure unlike many other rumors this rumor was a hoax in the first place so Admin was right to put a low credibility rank on it.

    The lens would be just outlandishly huge for any m43 body to handle. Besides, without a shorter counterpart such as a 14-40 it would look conceptually orphaned.

    I do however believe Olympus freedom to design higher end telephoto lenses for m43 must be at present severely restricted by Panasonic bodies’ lack of OIS. Judged by the number of reviews in online stores, stabilized Panasonic zooms are just massively more popular than Olympus zooms. I guess Olympus simply could be unable to recover R&D expenses on higher end telephoto lenses without any prospect of Panasonic users buying them.

    • JFo

      Very good point. As much as I like the idea of stabilization in-camera, the standard has been to stabilize the lens (with Canon & Nikon SLRs, etc.). In-lens stabilization aids the use of cameras like the GH3 and AF100 so much, that many users wouldn’t even consider a non-stabilized long zoom.

      • bart

        That standard has everything to do with it being rather difficult to move the film, so in-lens stabilization was the only option.

        We do not need such film era legacy, its a waste of material, causing extra weight, size and cost, and cannot correct for rotation properly.

        Rather, Panasonic needs to get a clue and start building cameras with in-body stabilization.

        • JFo

          I totally agree. I’d love for Panasonic’s cameras to have stabilization, but for now, the features I need are best served by the AF100 and GH3. The stabilized zooms help me hugely, but I do wish I had that option for other lenses (such as 3rd party primes).

          • bart

            AF100 and GH3… that very much sounds like you are a video guy.

            I do not know a single serious videographer who doesn’t use a stabilized rig for ‘handheld’ work, which makes it difficult for me to understand the ‘need’ for stabilized lenses… but maybe I’m missing something here.

        • Esa Tuunanen

          Panasonic doesn’t even have greatest ILIS (In Lens IS) in their every lens.
          Besides I don’t see fast primes getting ILIS so IBIS would further boost low light usefullness of system.
          And with m4/3’s one strength being easy adaptation of legacy/different system lenses availability of stabilization for all those through IBIS should be big mark on important advantages.

          There’s simply zero reason to avoid IBIS. And if it doesn’t work so well with very long teles those can be still built with ILIS.

    • bart

      So, which non-kit zooms does Olympus have that people might want to buy?

      Lets see.. the 40-150? and the 14-140… both of which are also available as kit lenses.. that leaves us with the 9-18.

      I rather doubt this has anything whatsoever to do with what you say, and everything with the fact that Panasonic actually sells a number of zoom lenses that would serve as an upgrade from a kit lens while Olympus essentially has none.

      • JFo

        I totally agree. I’d love for Panasonic’s cameras to have stabilization, but for now, the features I need are best served by the AF100 and GH3. The stabilized zooms help me hugely, but I do wish I had that option for other lenses (such as 3rd party primes).

      • Esa Tuunanen

        Really only non-kit/typical range m4/3 zoom for Olympus is 9-18mm…
        And Panasonic has that beaten with Lumix G 7-14mm if you’re on not so tight budget.
        In that situation any user who doesn’t blindly look brand but what range and aperture etc you get for your moneys doesn’t have much incentive to go for Olympus zooms.

        Unlike Panasonic with its G/GH models before E-M5 Olympus even didn’t have much of higher end body to go along with any higher specced/more special zoom and has been more interested about that Japanese girl camera concept.

      • avds

        My argument mostly distilled to the assumption that Panasonic bodies are more popular than those from Olympus, so there must be a pretty narrow target market for non-stabilized Olympus teles. However after I looked up sales rankings I think that assumption might be wrong. Still, I don’t think that the bias in the number of reviews towards Panasonic teles (the 45-200 in particular) can be explained by kit sales because Olympus kits with tele lenses don’t look to be hugely popular either (again, judging by relative number of reviews), so I guess there must be another explanation and one that would account for the high similarity of the 45-200 and Olympus 40-150 in terms of features (except OIS) and price…

    • ????

      How do you figure it would be outlandishly huge? It should be no large than the existing 100-300 from Panasonic. Mathematically they should even have the same size front element.

      • avds

        AFAIK the few existing zooms with similar specifications are much heavier and larger than the 100-300.

  • I wish Olympus would publish their lens roadmap as Fuji did, or is it so bad? No better zooms from Olympus next year and I will sell all my Oly stuff and buy a Fuji.

    • ph


  • Olympus Fanboy

    probably the surprising “something else” will be a new Olympus lens … for SONY! ;-)

  • hm, edit button disappeared? Anyway, I don’t want that Olympus will say that they bring out a new body with full functionality with Zuiko Pro lenses, like 12-60 or 50-200, so then we will have good lenses for mFT.

    1. I’ve buyed a E-M5 and don’t want to buy another body in the next years, and 2. I’ve buyed mFT cameras because they are small, I don’t want such big lenses adapted on a mFT body. I know, good and fast zoom lenses can not be produced in a very small way, but I want lenses with better optical quality then the existing ones and maybe with 3.8-4.5 or something like that. If you look at the Fuji lens roadmap and you see that they can do that, then Oly should also be able to do that, or not?

    Panasonic lenses are no option for me because then CA will not be corrected in camera when I use the E-M5, and some people have big problems with the new Pana lenses used with Oly bodies.

    • bart

      CA will not be corrected in-body regardless of what lens you use.

    • MikeH

      Perhaps someone should suggest to Olympus that they reconsider their lack of CA correction in camera for JPGs. Why do they refuse to add it?

      • bart

        Indeed that would be nice to have at times for sure.

        I use 3 Pana primes (14, 20, 25) on my PEN and OM-D tho, and it is seldom an issue. For that matter, its often pretty hard to tell if I used them on my G2 or on my E-M5 when just looking at CA. There are however cases where it does most certainly help.

  • And another problem, my mFT Kit-Zooms are full of dust after only 1 year of use! My kit lenses buyed with the E-620 have no problem with dust after 4 years… Maybe the mFT 12-50 will not have this problem because of weather sealing but it’s really not s sharp lens, even if I like the macro mode and the zoome range, and the focus mode for movies is also nice. But it’s really, really not a sharp lens, unfortunately.

  • like Fuji

    Surprising? Like 15mm f/8. Users don’t want such odd lenses.

    Oly, lets follow Fuji’s example. Fuji has standard zoom f/2.8-4. In micro43 is only expensive Panasonic f/2.8. There is necessary to make cheper 14-45 f/2.8-4 (or 12-35 f/2.8-4), small, light, optically good, waterproof… It could be even 14-35 f/2.8-4, but is should be small.

    • bart

      So go buy Fuji then, as they obviously do what you like.

      But why should everyone do what Fuji does?

      Surely there are actual reasons for wanting such a lens, but eh, because brand x does something Olympus should also do it? That makes little sense, there would be little reason to pick one over another for different requirements and situations.

  • Ren Kockwell

    Well, I don’t want the Panasonic 35-100 because it lacks the reach I need and the Olympus has gone the way of urban legends so it means it’s back to the gym for some serious upper body strength and back to Nikon DX and the trusty 70-200 VR.

    Goodbye guys, it’s been a blast here and thanks admin for your great service.


    • homer

      Oh no! What will we do with out you in the m4/3s community?! Everyone, let’s write millions of letters to Olympus! We need ten kockwell back!

      Don’t be so melodramatic, just wait for the 150mm f2.8 from Panasonic.

    • ph

      Bye bye.

    • Mukthtasheeshabab Ibn Kuth

      I am thinkink along those lines also. u43 does not have long fast lens and with Olympus not making such a lens, it will be a setback for some. Maybe setback for many.

      Kockwell choose Nikon DX and Nikon 70-200VR is correct choice in my opinion.

  • rombo

    Ok no bright zooms then. Can we have a nice 25mm/1.8 with quality and pricing of the 45mm/1.8 instead?

    • tim

      yes and please make it small as well ;-)

  • JeremyT

    Pretty disappointing – I was hoping for something to put a little price pressure on Panny if nothing else.

    Oh well. Maybe it’s something even more interesting instead…

  • Will we get to see this lens? Let me field the answer, Terada-style: “Maybe, maybe not.”

  • shanti

    @admin any news on a E5 successor?about to dump my Oly for Pentax as pretty sure they never will come up with the goods for us 4/3 users…

  • adaptor-or-die

    never seen the appeal of zoomies .. not when you can use a good prime. My favourite Zuiko glass is the OM 135mm f/2.8 works a treat on OM, e-4:3 and mFT in the latter two it’s 270mm focal equivilent is handy up close and off in the distance. It’s not a big tele, but it’s “sweet spot useful” Tons of Bokeh and DoF, and it’s bright … so if a ZD 135mm came out, that would be a lot more interesting [to me] than a zoomy dust pump! I look at the tiny mFT body with the Zuiko 135mm and compare that to a honking big Canon with one of those white monster primes on it … freaking codpiece.

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