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Olympus ZD 12-60 AF motor failing... again

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by dhazeghi, May 19, 2013.

  1. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Dara
    I was off hiking yesterday with my E-M5 and trusty ZD 12-60 (the 4/3 lens). At one point, I noticed the lens was having an extremely hard time achieving focus, sometimes failing entirely. In those cases, the motor would chatter away for 8-10 seconds before giving up. I tried it again this morning and it now entirely fails to achieve focus, and when it gives up, it makes a whining noise for several seconds.

    I had the AF motor on this same lens repaired about 18 months ago after it failed entirely. I wasn't thrilled then, but it was a 3.5 year old lens that I'd used quite heavily, so I figured it was just bad luck on my part. This time, the lens hasn't even been used all that much. It could be that I have really bad luck, but I'm beginning to think that the constant adjusting required by the CDAF algorithm has something to do with the AF motor's premature failure.

    Either way, a $900 lens requiring 2 $300 repairs within 18 months of each other is not making me very happy.
     
  2. Nepherim

    Nepherim Mu-43 Regular

    68
    May 27, 2012
    NJ, USA
    I loved my 12-60 on my E3, but decided that using it on the E-M5 was asking for trouble. There is no way that focus chatter can be good for the motor. Unfortunately looks like you managed to prove it out ;)

    On the other hand, a case study of 1 is not really much of a study...
     
  3. MAubrey

    MAubrey Photographer

    Jul 9, 2012
    Bellingham, WA
    Mike Aubrey
    One reason, among others, that I only MF my 50-200mm on my E-M5. I'm really sorry for your troubles. That's really frustrating.
     
  4. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Dara
    True enough.

    What concerns me is that these repairs will be a regular occurrence. I've taken perhaps 5k images using that lens in the past 18 months, which is pretty low usage for me. If the AF motor fails every 5k images, I'm going to have a serious problem.
     
  5. AFAIK, CDAF is not very good for any lens AF motor designed for PDAF, but it isn't something I've done frequently enough to experience any problems yet (touch wood).
     
  6. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Dara
    MF would definitely spare the motor, but I really find it a pain in general. That said, the 50-200/2.8-3.5 is such a beauty I can understand making an exception.

    Intuitively, that makes sense. OTOH, they don't mention such issues anywhere in the literature. So either I'm unlucky, or they're not expecting people to use their 4/3 lenses heavily on m4/3 bodies.
     
  7. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Pavel
    If you read Olympus DSLR forum on DPReview, there are quite a few disgruntled owners of this lens with failed motor who never used it on Micro 4/3. I remember reading about its problems as early as 2008. But using the lens on a CDAF body probably aggravates the issue.

    Sent from my GT-I9500 using Mu-43 mobile app
     
  8. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Dara
    Interesting. I've only seen one other report of the 12-60's motor failing. Do you by any chance have links?
     
  9. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Pavel
  10. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Dara
    I finally broke down and sent my lens in around two weeks ago. According to the website, the lens has been repaired (would have been nice to get an e-mail or something indicating that they'd received it). The good news is that they appear to have revised their repair fees - rather than the nearly $300 it was in 2011, it has dropped to $160. I'm still less than thrilled that the AF failed in the first place (and the second place), but at least the cost is somewhat more manageable now.