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Lensrentals says: “The Olympus 75mm f/1.8 is expensive because it’s worth it.”


Image courtesy: Robert Cicala by lensrentals

Now this test is going to push the Olympus 75mm preorders ;)

Robert Cicala from Lensrentals (Click here) just published another kind of Olympus 75mm lens review. He actually disassembled the lens to see what’s inside. He didn’t care a lot about the image quality because…”I won’t repeat what has already been done more thoroughly elsewhere. But I will say the Imatest results are spectacular.

The real question was, how well is the lens made? He writes: “Some people are put off by the price, at least from the discussions I’ve seen online. My perspective is that sometimes things are expensive because they’re worth it. This seems to be one of those times. The build quality is different than the majority of mirrorless lenses. The ones that are built like this are about this price range.

Read the full article at Lensrentals (Click here) to get the nice feeling that Olympus that time did it right and didn’t save a single penny on the lens costs. Full image quality reviews can be seen at DSLRmagazine (Tranlsation here), Robin Wong (part two) , Robin Wong (part one), Pekka Potka and SLRgear.

And now to the preorder options and shipping info:
In USA Amazon (Click here), Adorama (Click here)J&R(Click here) and BHphoto (Click here), will start shipping the lens in a few days.
Also in Europe  Amazon Germany (Click here), Amazon UK (Click here), Amazon France (Click here) and Amazon Italy (Click here) will very likely ship the lens by end of the month.
In Asia it’s already available at Amazon Japan, Digitalrev and on eBay.

Hood alternatives:
As I told you days ago the original hood costs $80 at Adorama or 80 Euro at Amazon Germany. On eBay (via Hong Kong) you can buy a third party standard hood for $15 (Click here) and a tele hood for $16 (Click here).

  • This lens is Olympus saying, “We CAN do HQ lenses with mFT”.

  • still…for many people its hard to understand that mft lenses can be expensive with a good reason.

  • Incessant Troll

    if i can deprive the plebeians from using this magical lens by paying ANY price, it will be worth it for me

    • Anonymous

      threatened by amateurs using “your” gear much?

    • Andrew

      threatened by amateurs using “your” gear much?

      • Incessant Troll

        what happened to laughter and joy in this world

        • figjam

          It went to where the good jokes are…

          • Fish


  • Mike

    Olympus has always done HQ at their choosing.

  • Yun

    Strong motivation words to convince for the purchase .
    But still no call yet from my retailer to pick up this great gem .

  • Bob B.

    So Olympus…where is my well-made, expensive glass grenade already! LOL!

  • mert

    Good thing that Olympus arent responding to those who call for cheaper, cheaper, cheaper. There are those of us who want great glass and are willing to pay top dollar for it.

  • Chad

    I noticed in the blog photos “Made in Japan”.

    Though high-end gadgets/electronics manufactured in China these day already have excellent standards of quality control as imposed by their original designer/brand name companies i.e olympus/apple, you can still never beat the product that is made in its origin country. I’m being a bit sterotypical here but if it’s made in China it’s put together by the hands of a chineseman, where in Japan a jap bloke put it together. The soul in quality that lies in the japanese culture/heritage while not directly measurable is still valued by many people – hence the price premium.

    As far as I know the 12mm is the only other oly m/43 lens made in Japan? had the exellent 45mm been made in Japan as well it may have cost $100~150 more.

    • you must not forget that way back in the ’50s ’60 and even ’70s alot of western people considered japanese products as inferior. Its typical that nowadays only japanese made products are considered to be high quality if compared with production moved to other asian countries. I think its silly and narrow minded.

      • Bob B.

        Well at least if the lenses are made in Japan we can rest easy that they will not be loaded with sulfur, carcinogens, lead paint or less that specified internal parts. China has a ruthless reputation for being underhanded, cheap and outright. criminal.
        I have a customer who I am installing a white-primed French door for. We found that the door manufacturer whose French doors that we liked subbed their white primed doors to China. With the Chinese reputation being what it is and thinking that a coat of white paint could hide all kinds of horror under it…we decided to go with the $175 extra charge and buy the unprimed American made clear pine doors and paint them.
        I have seen an read ENOUGH to be VERY skeptical of any product that is manufactured in that country…and that reputation has been EARNRD.

        • dau

          Wheres the omd made?

        • Will

          While the Chinese can have some bad QC, it’s almost impossible to live your life without dealing with most things made in China. It’s cheap labour honey pot.

        • bart

          And that is exactly how people looked at Japanese products a few decades ago.

          Throughout my life I’ve dealt with tens of thousands of Chinese products for resale. Bad stuff happens, and happens a bit more often with for example Chinese products then German products, and that has a price. Your ‘horror story’ however has all to do with fesr and desinformation. With some common sense and care it is a total non-isdue.

        • Ofcourse such things happen in countries where local brands can take evasive actions regarding quality/manufacturing/health control. If you hate china manufacturing you should dump most of your things you own. Anyway, manufacturers like Olympus setup a high standard for their plants outside Japan. We should all be thankfull that lowly paid employees do exist ;-)

  • A review can twist around things around but the fact remains : Considering the price of a lens and its ambitions , there is NO excuse not to include the hood in the price


    • sorry my inglish

      and f1.8 actually, in FF is 3.6

      • Will

        Well in DoF sure, but even in FF land a 150mm f3.6 is going to give you more than necessary shallow DoF, in fact in this regards it’s a bonus as you get the advantage of the light gathering ability of f1.8 and slightly less extreme shallow DoF of F3.6, because f1.8 at 150mm in DoF could not be used in most circumstances.

      • Steve

        No, f1.8 is f1.8 is f1.8. It is not f3.6.

  • Mara

    My my then please don’t hold a phone to your ear or a hands free to your mouth. You never know what you might inhale.

    Seriously I agree that there are poor Chinese products and ruthless businessmen. But you Can differentiate the rotten from the good. Not all are of illegal and poor quality. Just ask apple and the millions of lithium ion batteries floating around.

    That said its our Chinese mindset to extract even the slightest profit thatll be our undoing.

    Mind you I fully appreciate the horrors of Chinese products. Think melamine in milk powder

    • Bob B.

      The problem in China is that this ruthless behavior is deep in the culture, We are talking about a country where their own government spread aids throughout the back-country uneducated farmers in the 90’s by buying plasma from them in the winter when they were desperate for money incorrectly pooling their blood at a time when there was no excuse for theis tech other than to maximize profit at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives and now a plethora of orphaned children. AND the government did NOTHING for these innocent people and children after they had taken their lives and parents.
      The government also farms the organs of executed criminals and sellsthem on the world market to the highest bidders. The families are not even given the remains so that they can bury their loved ones.
      Now that is how the government conducts itself in China…you can’t expect things to be much better in the business culture.
      The ruthlessness is pervasive in the culture as a whole. It certainly isn,t everyone…but the attitude is widespread,

      • Well, sadly not everyone in the world has the high moral standards of Northern Americans. Maybe you should send some born-again Christians there to make it a better place. I assume you have been to China several times and speak the language well to have aquired this deep understanding about their culture. Chapeau!

        • Bob B.

          The facts are the facts…ruthlessness and disregard for human life is rampant in the government and culture….I personally avoid supporting that whenever possible…it isn’t always possible.

          • Just a quick note, as you seem to be working hard to damn the chinese. The americans seem to be very good at sending their men and women halfway accross the world to kill people with all sorts of high tech devices.

            What would one think of a government whose top leaders whould say:

            Lesley Stahl on U.S. sanctions against Iraq: We have heard that a half million children have died. I mean, that’s more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?

            Secretary of State Madeleine Albright: I think this is a very hard choice, but the price–we think the price is worth it.

            –60 Minutes (5/12/96)

            Would refuse to count the civilians killed in Iraq, and would use all sorts of horrors such as depleted uranium, causing untold damage to local civilian populations by not allowing the battlefield cleanup.

            This with the full support of most western governments. So why dont you lighten up a bit.


            • Nikku

              You’re talking about two different things: a government invading another country in an act of war vs a government killing its own people for the sake of profit. Bob wasn’t talking about Iraq, maybe he strenuously disagreed with the invasion of Iraq. See my response to Mara below for fuurther discussion.

      • bart

        We could point at how killing inocent people is the business of the US government and point at many examples…

        Maybe you shouldn’t go there… or at least ensure you are without faults before making your kind of argument.

        • the problem is…we cannot critisize one country without leaving out other countries….the whole world is a mess…amen.
          and now lets go back talking about G.A.S. stuff

  • Mara

    I purchased this lens an oh so lovely bokeh and smoothness.

    • Mara

      China is a big place with a lot of people. Imagine N America’s federal structure and it’s many states, each with their own government. Now put that in context with the number of people in china and it’s growing economy and telecommunication infrastructure that is in many ways akin to that of first world countries under the context of widespread poverty (actual or perceived). You then have a hotbed for people with dreams and ambitions and with today’s tech, the means for miracles to occur such as that during the late 19th century and early to mid 20th century in first world countries.

      Unfortunately much of these come at the cost of human conscience. Now when you consider the many number of people in china there is no wonder there are so many reports of such.

      The main government is very vocal about turnin for the better but provincial governments act on their own accord and some with impunity. The focus unfortunately for the national government is to black out all news that may possibly destabilize social harmony.

      If they could turn their focus towards hanging those responsible for getting a quick buck, things can improve.

      But again, this does not mean all things and elements are bad. China is basically a representation of the wild wild west, where everyone is in it for the fast buck. In his day an age we deem it unacceptable but we have to remember all countries went through the same process, albeit wihout he technology and hence the devastating consequences some actions have caused to the local populace.

      • Very well put, thank you for this. And foreign companies producing in China should do their part and take a look at the local working conditions and how they can be improved. This holds especially in cases when these companies demand a premium price for their product, see Apple/Foxconn.

  • Chris K.

    Too bad focus-by-wire only. :^( Would buy in a minute with mechanical manual focus…a-la the 12mm.

    • Nikku

      [In response to Mara above] Well said. China is incredibly capitalist, despite being a “communist” country. In fact, the closest comparison is the late 19th / early 20th century United States. We had rampant child labor and disregard for human life during the industrial revolution…in fact, it took strong federal involvement to put an end to some of the dehumanizing labor conditions that existed at the time. China will get there in time, but that certainly does not mean that we condone their actions in the present. It’s perfectly valid to try and avoid buying Chineses made items because of their reputation and workmanship–in fact, I would argue that this sort of sanction is a legitimate way to speed up the process of bringing China into the 21st century when it comes to labor standards and human rights. By that same token, I understand that nations can change, and gladly look to the day when the Chinese are just as esteemed as the Japanese and Germans when it comes to manufacturing.

    • The 12mm uses electronics for focusing too.

      In fact, I don’t think there is a FT or mFT lens that uses true manual focusing, like film/;egac glass, at all.

      If you’ve used the 12mm and found the manual focusing to be so smooth, you didn’t notice it was electronic, then it goes to show that the build quality of these lenses are truely outstanding!

  • animal_264

    Robin Wong did a supreme job with the photos, and very upfront about the usefulness (or not) of this focal length. I surmise this is a photographer’s lens, especially since the DOF can be very shallow on an already-shallow telephoto lens (150mm equivalent). The portrait shots are very convincing to shoot with this focal length, even if it’s a bit odd, because the photos are super sharp with stellar bokeh if that’s the intended effect. There will be intrepid shooters who try to capture video of moving objects wide open. It can be done, and can be very creative. ‘Not a lens I intended to procure, but after seeing Wong’s post, it’s a consideration.

  • nicwalmsley

    I think most of the questions havd been about the usefulness of the focal length and the lack of a hood and pouch, not the cost of the lens.

    Give me a 17mm of thd same standard, I’m all over it.

  • Hendrik

    Look what Amazon Germany hast just done. They made a Pull-Down-Menue to choose between the 45mm and the 75mm lens AND they also combined the consumer-reviews of the two lenses… funny people…

  • I hope I get my lens soon, can’t wait :-)

    About the cheap lens hood…. why bother? just get the very nice original lens hood and metal lens cap, the lens deserves it!

    • Fish

      Do you work for Oly’s accessory division? Why bother? Mostly because of the principle of buying a premium lens at a premium price and not getting a complete product. I would rather support the company that can sell a $15 lens hood, include the shipping cost, and still make a profit – rather than the company who even after collecting $900 from me, still demands another $80 for a lens hood.

      I’m not thinking about what the lens deserves. I’m thinking about what I deserve… And after being loyal to Olympus digital bodies and lenses since the days of the e-500, I feel like I deserve a little better than to be treated like a sheep for the shearing.

      Don’t worry, the $15 hood will do just as good a job at reducing glare.

  • BLI

    75mm useful? I recently tested the 75-300/4.8-6.3… Some thoughts:
    * comparing it with Panny 100-300, it:
    — costs 50% more
    — “slower” (P has aperture 4-5.6)
    — comes without hood and pouch (I got a roomy Nikon pouch tossed in…)
    — optically, the lenses are reported to be similar (and average at 300mm)
    — faster AF, less overshoot (but still has overshoot at times)
    — feels better mechanically (at times weird feeling of friction in P when zooming)
    — slightly bigger reach (75 vs 100), lighter, shorter
    * at 75 mm, narrower angle than expected. I will play around more with the lens at 75mm to get a feeling of how the 75/1.8 can be used wrt angle of view
    * 75-300: ok AF at 75mm, poor AF at 300 — unless in bright sunlight; if focusing in a shadow under a tree on a very sunny day, AF struggled, and the colors got mushy.
    * possible to operate on the E-M5 without added grips — no problem for me, but probably not optimal.
    Final thoughts: since the 75/1.8 is not available in my store yet, this gives me a change to get some feeling for the angle of view at 75mm, which surprised me somewhat. Of course, the 75/1.8 is a totally different thing with far superior optics, and much faster (both AF and aperture).
    Another comment: there is a strong need for a better m43 long tele lens; the 75-300/4.8-6.3 is somewhat unsatisfactory; by all means, fun to use, etc, but an amateur lens. Either a 100-400/4-4.8 or 4-5.6, weather sealed, MSC, fast AF, better optical quality at the long end, or a 300 or 400 prime.

    • In order to get the right feeling for the 75 1.8, I think you better try the ZD 35-100 2.0 FT zoomlens at 75mm, I really love that one at all focal lenghts, just the size and weight are not my cup of cappucinno.

      • BLI

        The 35-100/2 is a little out of my range, being an amateur, I can not put that much money in it… But “speed wise”, definitely.

      • BLI

        Yes, the size… as I’m enjoying an iced cortado right now — not my iced cortado size-wize.

    • BLI

      Ah — a major flaw (in my view) of the 75-300: if I zoom to 75 (or anything), use AF, the re-zoom (e.g to 80), it is totally out of focus.

  • Kenny A

    I would have gotten one for my OM-D if it were splash proof.

  • Sorry but I simply won’t pay extra money just because the lens has so-called high build qouality.

    For god’s sake, what’s the problem with the “cheap” plastic look? The 45/1,8 isn’t good enough (speaking about build quality)?!!

    • BLI

      In my view, the 45/1.8 is very good. The color tend to darken slightly over time (the plastic oxidizes), but to me that is not critical. Still, I don’t mind good build quality. :-)

  • OK, China made electronics be it cellphones, cameras, lenses are manufactured under horrific conditions, no doubt.
    Still, I think Oly should have used the same philosofy as with the excellent low cost 45/1,8. Less expensive materials are used. It is small and compact. IQ is great. – And made in China. Make it in Japan or Thailand and the price is up a bit, but not that much.
    Consience-wise all electronics are fully are partly made in Asia under conditions that seriously hazard worker’s health. That’s why we afford to buy them. This is not only China, but it is worst. Above someone said the goverment should not be blamed for this: Really BS!!! The Chinese goverment is responsible. It is very corrupt. They and their familys make fortunes this way.

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