Where is Olympus fast zoom?

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by HNM43, Jun 26, 2013.

  1. HNM43

    HNM43 Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 7, 2012
    A few months these were rumors flying around about possible fast zoom from Olympus to compete againt Panasonic 12-35 & 35-100.

    Was wondering anybody hear of anything recently on that or this that dead in water?
  2. danska

    danska Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2012
    Portland, OR
    Real Name:
    Speaking with the Olympus rep at the EP-5 intro day, I was told there aren't any on the map at this point. I expressed that we as a community would like alternatives to the 12-35/35-100. He told me that their main focus was introducing the two new bodies and that there would be another zoom (not fast) option coming fairly soon.

    I also expressed my desire for something like the 50-200 f/2.8-3.5 and the 150mm f/2.8 but he couldn't say anything other than wait for the next OM-D to arrive and you'll be happy. As I can gather, no, I won't be. I'm not looking for big clunky lenses when we know the Panasonic 150 will be out next year, and it will almost certainly be cheaper than the 4/3rds 150mm f/2.8.
  3. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    It seems to me that Olympus and Panasonic have chosen 2 different lens directions. Olympus seems to be concentrating on fast primes and Panasonic on fast zooms.

    Perhaps that's your answer. Neither may want to compete with the other over the same group within the market. Some people want fast primes and Olympus is meeting their needs, while others want fast zooms and Panasonic is meeting that. Take a look at prime focal length offerings from both and apart from the fact that both offer a 45mm lens, Olympus a fast portrait lens and Panasonic a slower macro, there are no duplications in focal length from both companies.

    M43 is a smallish market in the whole photographic scheme of things and the proportion of that market wanting any particular lens is always going to be less than 100% of that market. Each company maximises its potential market group within the M43 community if they avoid duplicating a lens in the other's range as much as possible. With a bigger market direct head to head competition on a particular lens focal length and aperture would be more profitable and make a better business decision. With the current market size I suspect both are choosing their lens program very carefully with a view to the financial bottom line and that's not a bad thing in my view. I'd rather have Olympus alive and financially well and able to continue its camera business into the future than having it producing a lens to compete directly with a Panasonic offering and having their camera business suffer financially because they chose to compete for a small part of the market where Panasonic are already well established. That isn't the way to maximise sales of product.

    Personally I'd love to see an Olympus fast 25mm prime, even though I have the PL 25mm. If Olympus introduced one, a lot of Olympus camera owners who already have the PL 25mm wouldn't swap and Olympus would basically be competing with Panasonic for market amongst new M43 users and existing users who don't have the PL 25. Panasonic has already recovered a lot of, if not all, of it's startup costs for their lens and a reduction in future 25mm sales wouldn't hurt them badly. With a new lens, Olympus would be looking to get as big a share of the market as possible fairly quickly, but the biggest existing share of the 25mm market already has the Panasonic lens so their early sales are going to be slow, a lot slower than they would be for a lens which didn't duplicate a Panasonic offering, and that means a lot longer period to the break even point on the lens. That almost certainly isn't what Olympus' board want so I doubt I'll see an Olympus 25mm anytime soon. I bet Panasonic feel the same way about competing with either the Olympus 12 or 17mm lenses.

    It would be a totally different kettle of fish if there were only one M43 manufacturer but while there are 2 main players splitting a smallish market I suspect this is the way things will continue.
  4. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    Real Name:
    I think that if Oly produced some fast zooms that were as good as the 4/3 versions they'd bury panasonic. No doubt this is also the reason Oly actually isn't producing fast lenses - it wouldn't surprise me at all if there were an agreement on the approaches each company has taken with their lens line-ups, which to this point in time have almost entirely been complimentary rather than competitive.
  5. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    This makes a lot of sense, so unfortunately, you are probably right.
    All bets are off if that fabled "Pro" OMD Olympus becomes reality though. They just HAVE to package that with a serious lens.
  6. Clint

    Clint Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 22, 2013
    San Diego area, CA
    Real Name:
    Wait till the next OM-D is announced - a couple of pro class lenses will probably be announced at the same time.
  7. pake

    pake Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 14, 2010
    Real Name:
    We don't want to wait anymore! Bring us the fast zooms already! :biggrin:
  8. owczi

    owczi nareteV 34-uM

    I think what your post really says is that they just don't want to step on each other's toes and double up products, apart from consumer zooms maybe. As much as I love Olympus' products, to me The Panasonic lens offering seems very consistent as a replacement for a FF lens set. Olympus' seems like a never-ending experiment. OK, Panasonic have less primes, but they are not focused on zooms. They are focused on establishing a solid lens base rather than doing quirky stuff. 25/1.4 and the coming 42.5/1.2 are still the fastest (light wise) AF lenses for MFT.

    I was holding off with the purchase of the P12-35 because of the rumoured Oly fast zoom, but now we know it's not happening. Oly are basically going to "cheat" and do the FT users a favour and allow them to use their superb (huge for MFT standards) FT fast zooms natively. Well, that's not the reason why I bought into MFT. Panasonic: you're doing it right*.

    * - for MFT only users.
  9. owczi

    owczi nareteV 34-uM

    I want this to be true, but methinks na-ah.
  10. slothead

    slothead Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 14, 2012
    Frederick, MD
  11. jnewell

    jnewell Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 23, 2011
    Boston, MA
    I think this all has to be put into the context of a limited market for m4/3 and finite company resources for imaging generally and for m4/3 products. It doesn't make a lot of objective sense for two companies to throw a lot of resources and investment into overlapping or duplicative high-end lenses for a limited market when both companies are better off financially with the pattern that seems to have evolved. I'm not sure we aren't better off, too, since if Oly were trying to compete with the two Panny f/2.8 zooms we might not have lenses like the 75/1.8?
  12. Haans

    Haans Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 18, 2012
    I've been waiting for a "pro" Olympus since the E1. They just keep playing around the edges...:horse:
    My next camera...Fujifilm GA645zi...arriving tomorrow.