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Monday, 20 September 2010

Comments

Not sure these are good news for Oly users, but hey: it's the sign of the times.

Speaking of which, Mike, I guess this new camera could also make you salivate (even if it is still just a mockup):

http://www.dslrmagazine.com/digital/camaras-compactas-digitales/tocando-la-nueva-olympus-2.html

Is anyone shocked?

Didn't think so.

I must say this Miguel García is not me!
(quite a common name here in Spain)

Well, they are going to have a hard time regaining their current 4/3s users if they keep dropping systems... I suffered their lack of commitment twice already, first with the OM system and now with the four thirds, so I doubt I will be buying any micro 4/3s body.

Olympus; the Japanese Leica!!!

Is it time to weep yet? Wither a 35-100 updated with SWD? Wither a fast wide prime? Where's the incentive to buy new bodies if there are no new lenses forthcoming? Why am I being driven into Sony's arms? (Good Lord, please don't let them stop developing A850/900's and CZ glass...)

good point Martin :(

4/3 might have played better if there had been more players. As it is, there may be more companies making Nikon-mount lenses (or Canon) than 4/3. The idea of a wider range of bodies and lenses that worked together, and more competition, sounded good to me as a consumer, but oh well.

Meanwhile, micro 4/3 semi-accidentally launched the EVIL idea (at least in the mind of the public), and that's clearly important. So now I'm hoping that gets more players.

Finally, a bit of lens news that makes *me* happy.

('cause it's all about me, of course [g])

pax / Ctein

Smart for a company like them to stay focused. The fact that their new systems are pretty backward compatible while still pushing their advantages though seems like good insurance and smart business. I know a lot folks always want matching tracksuits, that is, bodies and lenses, but this allows Oly to move forward more aggressively than the 800 lb. gorillas of the market. I can use OM lenses (if I owned them) on 4/3 and I can use both OM and 4/3 on m4/3. Seems like a pretty smooth transition and progress, not abandonment of their users, rather an upgrade path (assuming the pro m4/3 body is up to snuff). The different systems with adaptable mounts avoids the confusion that you get from subtle changes in Nikon and Canon mounts. I always heard that any Nikon lens can be used on any Nikon, old or new, but that's not exactly true.

I have a 4/3 system, and will probably transition to m4/3 in time. Yeah, my lenses will be relatively big, but we all upgrade our lenses over time too, and this will allow me to do so at a reasonable pace. Not being a gadget freak who changes systems avery year or three, if people step back (emotionally at least) for a second and think about what would be the best way to handle existing customers while growing their customer base, this seems like a very smart approach.

That is...very very sad.

Good for Olympus, and I say that as a relatively happy 4/3 user (and as an *extremely* happy user of Olympus research microscopes, as well).

They understand the way forward, and are doing what they need to do to maintain the viability of their company and the well-being of their employees in a brutal economic climate.

They've also stated that 4/3 lens owners will always be able to use 4/3 lenses, implying that some new kind of system, not m43, is in the works (that has a new mount, but can use 4/3). But that's for the rumor site.

For me, I really like my Zuiko lenses, so I might actually spring for the E5, despite the underwhelming feature set, and be happy for a few years.

Now, guess why I have decided not to invest into my Pentax K-Mount system any more ...

Less than two years ago, Olympus promised not to let m43 influence the progress and support of 43 (I'm quite certain about having read something like this).

Bottom line: These are very interesting times, but interesting times are not necessarily encouraging long-term investments, e.g. in expensive glass ...

There is some dispute as to the translation of the quote. Some indications are as you have reported, but other translations indicate that there is no 4/3 lens CURRENTLY in development as resources are being used by m4/3 development, not that there will be no 4/3 lens development in the future.

Mike, Olympus are clearly ahead of the curve 'cos everyone knows the future is in fixed-lens cameras.

4/3 has never gained the recognition it deserves. It is the only camera system that put optics in the center, and what optics!
It is a sad day for photography (well, not entirely given the Fuji gem, but still). The day the sensor won.
Sic transit gloria mundi.

I'm not surprised. I will also not be surprised if the E-5 is in fact the last 4/3 body.

"clearly ahead of the curve"
Or,digging their own grave?

The biggest problem was that the 4/3 gear was never very much smaller (if any!) than the APS-C competition.

Micro 4/3 seems like the fulfillment of the 4/3 sensor-size theory, but even there it has to worry Olympus (and Panasonic) that Sony's NEX series undercuts their body size while retaining an APS-C sensor.

We've had instances of employees in the US/Europe saying something that later gets retracted by the Japan office. How sure can we be about what this guy says?

Charles L,
Short answer, we can't.

Mike

I can't say much more than -

This royally sucks.

Not sure if it's a smart business move by Olympus to announce the end of the 4/3 lens line this early in the game. They could have done what Leica did, let the R system rot for a few years before finally pronouncing it dead.

The uproar would be much more tempered.

How much more and for how long can Olympus really extract from that small 4/3 sensor, given the fact it has been shown it's possible to build even smaller cameras with bigger sensors ala the Sony NEX systems and the recently announced Fujifilm X100?

The main problem of such a news announcement be it through forums or otherwise is that whomever will start offloading Olympus 4/3 glass will sustain monetary losses. I don't think that Olympus handled this decision of theirs in the most graceful fashion... Sad news.

Well, yes, the relevant answer is not really clear in Google Translate. It may mean "no 4/3 lenses ever again" or "we have covered the areas we have intended to cover for a while and now are going to develop faster lenses for m4/3".

"Tenemos el catálogo de ópticas digitales más grande del mercado y cubrimos prácticamente la totalidad de lo que nos planteamos en su momento."

"En su momento". Doesn't this mean "at this moment"? Not really "at the time".

Hmm... I can't say I'm not disappointed (even if, from the start of m4/3, I knew this was going to happen), but I can see something good for me: in a few years, I think I'll be able to find used 4/3 lens and cameras at very low prices...

Adding E30 + 50-200 to what i have (E500 + 11-22 + 35macro + 50macro + 40-150) will make me happy for a long time.

Milo

I bought the GF1 and sold my pentax body, kept the lenses. The GF1+Novoflex adapter plus manual Pentax lenses works amazingly well in aperture priority (which is all I care about). If you can live without autofocus, It's a great combination. That said, since I love the Pentax slrs and the m4/3 Panasonics, the only thing I'm holding on to is my M135/2.5, M50/1.7 and the Limited 15 (which does work on the m4/3 bodies with the nifty Novoflex adapter that has an aperture ring of its own!). And I love using aperture rings, that are functional in that fashion.

"The biggest problem was that the 4/3 gear was never very much smaller (if any!) than the APS-C competition."

I agree with Ryan. I'd be willing to live with slightly higher noise and slightly less dynamic range in exchange for a smaller, equally responsive camera that uses small, fast, interchangeable lenses. Let's hope Olympus' pro Micro 4/3 meets these expectations, otherwise what's the point?

I'm with ctein; I'm happy to see Olympus putting their effort into lenses for their mirrorless systems, where they have a better chance of long-term success, and where I can benefit from their efforts!

I was seduced years ago by the OM system and then abandoned by Olympus both in the further development of the system and early statements that our cache of lenses would not be supported in the new digital cameras. So glad I moved to digital before they did. Olympus is only about what is profitable. Evidently they think that they will be able to maintain the ridiculous margin of the micro 4/3 system even when others start to compete in the same area. If not, they will just drop that too. Who in the world would buy that new E5 knowing this?

Micro 43 is the embodiment of the promise that the Four thirds meant to deliver.

Long live the new king.

I'm a little upset. I bought into the Olympus E-3 because of my admiration of the innovation they'd shown in the OM cameras. Also thought 4/3 might be the wave of the future. Now I'm hoping I didn't buy into a dead-end system.

"Now I'm hoping I didn't buy into a dead-end system."

I'd sympathize, but let me put my Konica-Minolta away first....

Mike

I'm not sure what this really means, but meh.

I have two lenses. I sometimes think I could use a new lens, but honestly, I don't.

Looks like they've revised their statement, and now say that of course they will develop more lenses for 4/3 in the future, and point out today's firmware upgrades for 3 lenses. For now they have paused 4/3 lens development in favor of m4/3.

Well, Mr. Johnston, now that you bring it up, I did own both Konica and Minolta cameras at one time. So I'm hoping I'm not falling into a bad pattern of betting on losers...

erlik wrote:
"Tenemos el catálogo de ópticas digitales más grande del mercado y cubrimos prácticamente la totalidad de lo que nos planteamos en su momento."

"En su momento". Doesn't this mean "at this moment"? Not really "at the time".

Allow me to translate that paragraph for you (as a native speaker of Spanish):

"We have the largest catalog of digital-optics in the marketplace and we cover practically all that we planned to at the time."

Sounds like they're saying: "we had a lens roadmap, we followed it, and we've now arrived at our destination; sorry guys, but there are no more lenses to make."

Well, it does answer one vexing issue I had when contemplating systems, which was that a high-end Olympus body would have made an excellent companion to a smaller m4/3 body if only the lenses were compatible in *both* directions.

Then I ended up falling into shooting mostly Canon FD gear and stopped thinking about DSLRs for a while.

Now, a digital system where I could have the pro body, a lightweight carry-around body (which would also act as backup), lenses and flashes shared by both, *and* the option of using my FD glass, well that's something I could see myself eventually buying into.

Assuming Olympus haven't driven their entire user base away by then...

Are we looking at the beginning of the end of optical viewfinders, and if so, to what end ? Is everything to be eventually pickellated ? Maybe we will have enhanced vision electronic glasses (e-veg) yet, to replace the obsolete rose tinted variety. It's late, I feel old.

Its a business decision. Losing money will never put Olympus in a position to serve photography in the future. That's the context I'm understanding all this.

"Micro 4/3 seems like the fulfillment of the 4/3 sensor-size theory, but even there it has to worry Olympus (and Panasonic) that Sony's NEX series undercuts their body size while retaining an APS-C sensor."

And yet with no advantage in image quality. Go figure.

"The biggest problem was that the 4/3 gear was never very much smaller (if any!) than the APS-C competition."

I agree with Ryan.

Um, guys, have you ever seen Canon's 400/2.8, for instance? And compared it to Zuiko 50-200/2.8-3.5? A huge rocket launcher against an Uzi for 2/3 of a stop faster. "Never very much smaller" does apply to the wide end, though.

I'd be willing to live with slightly higher noise and slightly less dynamic range in exchange for a smaller, equally responsive camera that uses small, fast, interchangeable lenses.

Hm. Can't say I don't agree with this. But, Gordon, take a look at what kind of marketing succeeds and what kind of marketing is prevalent around.

"Cleaner image", DXO marks, and all the other techno-weenie stuff. I don't think it's possible to educate everybody and anybody. It may be that the market forces will kill your (and mine) kind of talk. Kill it deader than a dodo.

Mmmm, better get the stock pages and see if this company is a real presence on this planet. Any ways, it's probably just a pause while another company picks up the slack.

Just like a rumour... to never ever be comprehensive and give all the details and keep every one out here wishing they never heard of 4/3 stuff.

Zeiss likes 4/3 material.... YummY!

So day 3 is the Bad News day in many respects now I got Bad News for these companies....

I'm getting a Pin Hole and Film thing now! haha

Count me as someone who was a bit surprised to even see the E-5 announced. I don't know whether this is a real announcement from Olympus or not--or the correct interpretation--why would they tell people they're not developing 4/3 anymore at the same time they release the E-5? At any rate, the E-system already appears to be reasonably complete from a commercial point of view--they offer multiple performance levels of zooms across most of the focal length range. I suppose anyone who expected more primes might be disappointed.

Olympus is only concentrating on micro 4/3 lenses for now. If they feel the need for another 4/3 lens in the future they will create it. I pretty much consider that the lenses they have now pretty much cover the gamut. Making stuff for just creations sake is a total waste. Look how many cameras Canon puts out there in hopes that consumers will buy it. Most are not significant upgrades and others (T1i) are basically a downgrade in image quality. In today's market companies have better be lean in their manufacturing. Just because Olympus is concentrating on micro 4/3's, that does need their attention right now, doesn't mean 4/3 is dead.

Abdul Rahman Bin Osman: Why do you guys stop developing 43 lenses? kinda sad man. i love the zuikos and thats the one main reason im thinking of going with you guys.

http://www.43rumors.com/official-olympus-press-conference-news/comment-page-1/#comments

Olympus Imaging Singapore: Hi Rahman, thank you for your concern on our Zuiko digital products. The press release had misinterpreted the message of our European staff.

We will be focusing our efforts on the the PEN system for 2011 and we are fully committed to the E-system.

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