Review Olympus OM 75-150 4.0 (adapted / vintage)

connloyalist

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Sep 28, 2018
Messages
38
Location
Netherlands
Real Name
Christine
Hi All,

I wasn't sure whether I should put this under the "reviews" section or the adapted lenses. Moderators, feel free to move this if you feel that is appropriate.

The other day I picked up an Olympus OM 75-150 4.0 lens on eBay. Cheap. This is an SLR lens, production apparently started around 1974 (according to the Photography in Malaysia website. Also see that website for pictures of the lens). I have one of the later models judging by the inscriptions on it. The reviews I have seen on it are "not uniformly positive", but I decided to give it a try since the features were close to what I was looking for and it didn't cost me an arm and a leg.

Briefly the specs: 75mm to 150mm zoom. Constant aperture of 4.0 up to 22. This is a two ring zoom: the zoom ring and the focusing ring are separate. I prefer two ring zooms over the 1 ring "push pull" type zooms that were popular for a while. Built-in lens hood. And of course manual aperture and manual focusing with hard stops at both ends. No electronics whatsoever. Mine weighs 452 grams without the lens caps. As far as I can tell it is single coated. Since I do think I have a later one, it would appear that the later ones also were not multi coated.

All this is on an Olympus E-M5 Mark II with a Metabones ("straight", not speedbooster) adapter.

Performance wise I am very pleased with it. I would describe the sharpness at infinity as good, even wide open at 4.0. However, at 4.0 it does lack some contrast. That improves considerably when stopped down one notch to 5.6. Stopping down further to 8.0 might improve things a little bit more, but not enough where it makes it worth losing the stop of light (in my opinion).

Since it is single coated shooting into the sun is certainly not ideal, even without the sun in frame, but even then the colors don't wash out completely. With the sun behind you it does very nicely.

One thing that I should remark upon is that when zooming it doesn't hold it's focus. If you are at one extreme of the zoom range and focused in on something and then go to the other extreme of the zoom range you will see things going distinctly out of focus as you zoom. So with this lens you should always zoom first, then focus.

Bottom line: I really like this lens. The ergonomics of it are very comfortable for me and if you take its shortcomings into account I like the pictures it lets me take.

I went to the zoo this afternoon so that is where these example pictures are from. All are straight out of camera.

Below: Into the sun (see shadow of the monkey). Aperture 4.0, 1/320, ISO 200 and probably 150mm. E-M5 Mark II.

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When you aren't looking into the sun the results are better. Aperture 5.6, 1/100, ISO 200 and probably 120mm. E-M5 Mark II.
By the way, I loved this geriatric wallaby.

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Regards, C.
 

connloyalist

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Sep 28, 2018
Messages
38
Location
Netherlands
Real Name
Christine
Looking closely at the wallaby I feel I may have missed focus (on the eyes) just slightly. Perhaps this one is better.

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Regards, C.
 
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