Body cap lens: Why?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by Cederic, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. Cederic

    Cederic Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 14, 2012
    So I may be weird, but why do Olympus feel there's a market for a body cap lens (the 8mm I think).

    Do people take their lenses off the body and put a body cap on all the time? Am I weird for keeping my 14-42 pancake on the body as a default lens, replacing it with another lens if I'm outside of the city (but putting the 14-42 back on for travelling)?

    If people are using the camera, are they really going to use a sub-optimal (being kind here) body cap lens instead of a "real" one?

    What's the use case here? Who is the target market? Am I unnecessarily confused?
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  2. stripedrex

    stripedrex Do or do not. There is no try.

    Jun 8, 2012
    Long Island, NY
    Real Name:
    I'm equally perplexed and shocked ppl even pay $50 for this thing. Only use case I can think of is ppls bags may require body cap to fit all lenses. Id pay 50 for a new bag myself so it can fit w body plus lens myself so again .. perplexed :p. What's worse is there's a copy cat out now.

    Sent from my SPH-D700 using Tapatalk 2
  3. PaulGiz

    PaulGiz Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 3, 2013
    Rhode Island, USA
    Photography isn't always about sharp or technical perfection. Having a compact lens, set to hyperfocal distance can allow a spontaneity not easily achieved in other ways.

    Great photography is about freezing a moment, a mood or feeling in light and shadows.

    If you go with it, you might feel it.

    • Like Like x 3
  4. Fmrvette

    Fmrvette This Space For Rent

    May 26, 2012
    Detroit, Michigan
    Real Name:
    Hi Cedric!

    It's a 15mm f/8 lens.

    Check out the thread:

    I don't put a body cap on, but I do tend (these days) to put the 14mm f/2.5 on the camera before putting it away - also I set the mode on P and ISO on auto, so that if I want to do a quick 'grab' shot it's ready to go just by powering up. I used to go with the 20mm, but I like the extra headroom of the 14mm.

    Quite a few do, yeah. I don't consider it 'sub-optimal' - check out some of the images in the thread above. Some of 'em ain't all that bad :bravo-009:.

    Well, the lens is simply fun to use - the very limitations of the lens reduce the number of options when making a photograph; put it on hyper-focal focus and then one can just concentrate on the framing. It's not the sharpest lens in the kit, but the images made with the 15mm aren't about sharpness, they're about other attributes.

    I'm not sure who the target is, but I forked over $50 U.S. so I must be part of it.

    If you get a chance, try one out. (I've got a 'myset' configured for the 15mm - monochrome, 6x6 - reminds me of the photos I used to take with a Hawkeye Brownie fifty years ago.)

    You might find it to be fun.


    • Like Like x 10
  5. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    Real Name:
    +1 - Yep, just what he said. I'm very happy with mine. :smile:
    • Like Like x 1
  6. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    Because it's cheaper than any lens hood that they offer! :rofl:
    • Like Like x 5
  7. psu_13

    psu_13 Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 24, 2013
    Yeah really.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Fmrvette

    Fmrvette This Space For Rent

    May 26, 2012
    Detroit, Michigan
    Real Name:
    Olympus has lens hoods????



    • Like Like x 2
  9. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs Super Moderator

    Apr 17, 2010
    Near Philadephila
    It's a great street lens in good light. I use zone or hypefrfocal focus methods on the street anyway and f8 tends to be perfect in good light. And it's a good wide angle focal length for street work. Pair it with an EPM2 or EPL5 or any of the smaller bodies and its as small as nearly any compact. Here's another thread with some body-cap street images. It's a really nice little lens, just a limited one...

    • Like Like x 3
  10. Zariell

    Zariell Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 28, 2012
    Bountiful, UT
    Its fun, its affordable, it's like the Holga lenses I have, cheap at twice the price, but still worth it to have a great old time :p Is it going to perform like a expensive lens nope, but thats kind of the point.
  11. Mercurio

    Mercurio Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 17, 2012
    Bogot√°, Colombia
    Real Name:
    ¬°Just for the fun of it!
    On the other hand, it makes a second body, like an EPM-1, pocketable.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. gsk3

    gsk3 Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 29, 2012
    I, for my part, am continually amazed at the degree to which people turn to m4/3 only to impugn the most compact options in the system. Size matters. A lot. And having a body cap lens option on a GF or E-PM is a pretty cool option for true pocketability.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. snaimpally

    snaimpally Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 31, 2012
    Its a $50 lens! Its kind of like putting your camera in instamatic mode. Sometimes its nice not to have to futz around with the controls and just take pics. Forces you to pay attention to composition.
  14. napilopez

    napilopez Contributing Editor

    Feb 21, 2012
    NYC Area
    Real Name:
    Napier Lopez
    This lens is appealing to many because it's cheap, and to some it can be greatly beneficial, depending on how they carry their camera.

    Not everyone carries their camera in a bag. When I had my E-PL1 for a short time, I'd carry the body only with lens cap in one pocket, the lens in another pocket. During the winter, I'd also do this with my old G3. If today I were to have a small body like the E-PM2 or E-PL5 I would most definitely continue to carry the camera in this way, and a low quality 15mm f8 is certainly better at taking pictures than a body cap with no lens it.

    Also, despite it's low sharpness, it's simple design gives it quite good macrocontrast and very very natural looking colors. For some reason, this lens seems to render like film, even though that doesn't really make sense.

    Seriously, very pleasing colors. Here are just two random images I found on flickr:

    <a href="" title="Zona Expo Zaragoza by alorda, on Flickr">[​IMG]"600" height="800" alt="Zona Expo Zaragoza"></a>

    <a href="" title="E-PL1 + Olympus Body Cap Lens by joejoekuo, on Flickr">[​IMG]"537" height="800" alt="E-PL1 + Olympus Body Cap Lens"></a>

    And thes ones:

    Body Cap Lens 15mm 1:8.0 - Macro mode - handheld | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    Leica IIIf | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    Besides, it's cheaper than a leica body cap, and for all of Leica's amazing optics, their body cap sure loses out in image quality to Olympus' offering =P
    • Like Like x 3
  15. aldus

    aldus Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 24, 2012
    Fairbanks, Alaska
    Real Name:
    Dennis Moser
    I don't understand why other companies hadn't thought of this before now ... I guess that's why Holga exists and is making money.

    An awful lot of people think that you have to have a fast, super-sharp lens and that's how photography is defined. The fact is there's lots of room for the differences that this little lens offers.

    For anyone who wonders "Why?" I suggest finding a child that you can spend some time to teach photography using a pinhole camera. Back up two steps and think about why and what you're shooting. Are you REALLY having fun when you shoot?

    Putting this little lens on the front of that body and working with what it allows you to use, you just might have some fun again.

    And besides, it makes a "ready-to-shoot" body cap for your camera...
  16. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Its been done before.... with and without optic.... without being a pin hole cap.
  17. Zariell

    Zariell Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 28, 2012
    Bountiful, UT
    Well the good news here is Olympus isn't forcing anyone to go out and buy the lens, in fact they don't even list it as a lens, so if its not your cup of tea then you can pass it by and keep that 50 dollars in your wallet, or you can spend a few dollars and have fun.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Are we back to this again? This is not a serious lens but a fan one, an artistic one. I don't have it yet but will get one eventually. It may not have rated real high on DxO but sharpness and aberration control is NOT what this lens is about. I also think some of their ratings are off the wall anyway. If you don't understand this lens then it isn't for you, move on and let the rest of us shoot.
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  19. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    When Edmund Hillary was asked why he climbed Mt Everest he supposedly replied "Because it's there". Some of us are using this lens for that reason, and we get a kick out of using it like Hillary got a kick out of climbing Everest. I'd rather use the body cap lens than climb Mt Everest.
    • Like Like x 1
  20. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Which, unfortunately, is the case with all OEM hoods.

    I used to smirk when all my buddies were paying at least $65 or $75 for a simple Canon bayonet hood that was no better than the ones that came for FREE with EVERY Zuiko lens that I got from Olympus. Well, the Canon ones sometimes had nicer felt inside than the hard ridges of the free Zuiko hoods, but they sure as hell weren't $75 worth of felt!

    Funny how the tables have turned and now everybody criticises Olympus for simply doing what everybody else has been doing for decades, just because we no longer have the perks Olympus used to spoil us with for free. ;)
    • Like Like x 1