Interesting phenomenon noted with Olympus 12-40mm

Nov 19, 2013
Portland, OR
With SLRs and my OM-D, I typically shoot with both eyes open, so that my left eye can remain aware of what's going on outside the viewfinder.

I've noticed that while looking through the EVF of my E-M5 with the 12-40mm lens attached and set at 40mm, I get a nice stereoscopic image of objects
visualized in the finder (i.e. 3 dimensionality because both eyes are working together, and the apparent magnification of objects matches closely enough that my
visual system can fuse them). Interestingly the focus distance doesn't seem to matter.

Anyway it's notable because I haven't experienced the same phenomenon with other lenses (Olympus 40-150mm at 40mm, Canon 40mm f2.8 on 5D).

Not sure if it's something special about the 40mm focal length, the 80mm effective field of view, or the particular lens construction, but it's an interesting and
pleasing effect while shooting.


Mu-43 Top Veteran
Jan 24, 2013
Oakland, CA
It's just a question of matching the magnification of your eyeball.
This depends on the lens focal length and the viewfinder magnification.
Your 5D would show the same effect at a different focal length.
BTW, this works better in portrait orientation as the views for the two eyes are not vertically offset.
The additional horizontal offset generates a somewhat exaggerated 3D effect.

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