I was over at Precision Camera today, to look at the new gear recently announced by Olympus. The OM-D E-M1 Mark II looks promising with an unbelievably fast shutter speed. It’ll be interesting to see how this latest mirrorless camera compares with DSLRs for sports and action.
I was attracted, however, to a new lens, the Olympus 25mm f1.2. Anything less than a f1.4 seems exotic to me — it’s something that you don’t typically hear about. While it’s a, not too shabby, 50mm f2.4, in full frame equivalents, you get a fantastic f1.2 of light gathering goodness. I asked Celissa to pose for me.
At f1.2, Celissa is sharp but the Olympus camera she was modeling is out of focus. More depth of field than I’m typically used to, with micro 4/3. The bokeh, or the quality of out of focus area, looks wonderful. The lens is a sturdy metal build and weather sealed. It’s not as big as I imagined and comfortable even with the modest grip on the OM-D E-M5 Mark II.
Here’s another one of Celiisa, which works better I think. The out of focus smartphone looks less distracting. With the smaller sensor, micro 4/3 typically doesn’t have as much depth of field, which is, of course, determined by physics. But with the new larger aperture primes, Olympus is overcoming this limitation to some extent. Even wide open, the lens is very sharp. It’s not the dreamy soft look of the Canon 50mm f1.4, for example. The f1.2 on the Olympus is very usable.
Even with the f1.2 aperture, like any lens, the further you get from the subject, the more that’s in focus. The top image of Brett and Celissa is nicely separated from the background. Step back further, again at f1.2, and a lot more is in focus. It makes for a fantastic low light lens.
Finally, here’s your chance to write the caption to this fun photograph. If you think of a good caption, feel free to write it in the comments area. We came up with a few:
The new Olympus camera comes in black, white and transparent.
Brett has the new Olympus camera, but it’s still under embargo, so we can’t show it to you.
The new Olympus camera is so small, you can’t see it.
The Olympus 25mm f1.2 looks like a winner, though at $1,199, it’s quite pricy. I have the Panasonic Leica 25mm f1.4, so I’m covered for now. But no doubt, this new Olympus lens is sure tempting.
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