*Olympus m.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 PRO lens, a user review w/ @getolympus

P1070426

Ultra wide angle options for every system, tend to be expensive and/or compromised.  It can be difficult to optically correct and transfer light onto these digital sensors which are far less forgiving than film ever was, especially outside of the center frame.  Add to that, with various “crop” formats, the physical focal length needed to achieve these angles of view has to be remarkably short which provides other engineering challenges.  Panasonic saw the need for an ultra wide angle zoom lens from the very early stages of the Micro 4/3 format, and has offered a very solid 7-14mm f/4 lens for years, but many system shooters wanted both a faster option, along with one that was environmentally sealed for outdoor work.  Olympus answered that call with the m.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 PRO lens.  A substantial, weather sealed, tank like 14-28mm f/2.8 equivalent lens (in light gathering you FF fanatic naysayers, you) that costs a pretty penny, especially considering the Panasonic Lumix option at close to half the price, it’s not necessarily one for the budget minded shooter.  It is however, a pretty damn stellar performer.  I have had this lens for the better part of the year, and I’ve just returned from a trip to Portugal and Holland where I used this lens on the GX8 for my travel documentation needs.  I have some other shots sprinkled in, but I want to give a bit of perspective when using this lens as a travel companion. C’mon in for some shots and thoughts…

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*The Mighty Might, Panasonic GM1 on super sale

iPhone 5s vs Panasonic Lumix GM1

Adorama has the Panasonic, micro 4/3 GM1 camera with 12-32mm pancake zoom for $598 which comes with a $200 Adorama Gift Card, dropping the price for the camera and lens to an effective $398!  The lens itself retails for $348, and while that may be a little steep for the lens itself, it is a true 24mm e-fov wide angle lens that is sharper than many of the comparable prime lenses for the system at like aperture, across this zoom lens’ range.  While the asking price for the lens itself might be debatable, the quality and sheer minuscule footprint cannot be.  Sure that $200 gift card is only valid at Adorama, but if you’re like me, you’ll find a way to eventually spend two hundred bucks on something there.

That’s a pretty sweet deal for this little powerhouse of a camera and lens that I feel is the best kit lens I’ve used for the system.  

You can see the deal, currently running at Adorama via my affiliate links below:

GM1 (Blue) with 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 Lens (Silver) + $200 Adorama Gift Card HERE 

GM1 (Orange) with 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 Lens (Silver) + $200 Adorama Gift Card HERE

If you’d like, you can read my thoughts on the GM1 HERE and the 12-32mm Kit Lens HERE.

I bought my GM1 as soon as it was available, and it has been with me every day since, literally.  With the right lenses, this camera is pocketable and is small enough to go anywhere.  It has the same sensor as the GX7, which is rumored to also be included in the soon to be announced G7, which is a great performing sensor, especially for RAW file capture, and in my test/review, out performed the Sony sensor in the Olympus OMD EM5 in most every way.  The GM5 is essentially the same exact camera with a hot shoe and an EVF.  Both great additions, but for this price, I think it would be hard to find a better overall value of size, performance and build quality offered with the GM1.  It’s a great little machine, and by little, I mean tiny.

You can stay posted on reviews, tutorials and deals by finding me on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or Instagram or if you prefer to receive email alerts when articles are posted, feel free to add your email address at the top right of the page here.  

Happy shooting.

Tyson

*Olympus 45mm f/1.8 Lens on sale!

IMG_7115

I’ve been on the fence for years now regarding a moderate/short tele micro 4/3 lens having been pretty happy with my adapted Contax G Zeiss 45mm f/2 Plannar lens, until fate dealt me a debilitating blow last week which saw my trusty 12-32mm pancake zoom bite the dust.  I’ll get into that in more detail later, but looking to replace it, and having a difficult time finding one, I came across the current Olympus Lens Rebates (click here to see them all).  The Oly 45mm f/1.8 lens is largely regarded as one of the best lenses for the system, especially for the price.  Right now, that normal price of $399 is down to $349 as Olympus has issued a $50 rebate which runs through June 14th, 2014 according to Oly’s website.

While I’ll do a more in depth review on this little gem shortly, come on in for my initial thoughts and sale links.

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*Hallelujah!!! Apple finally supports Lumix GM1 RAW files! (as well as XE2, XT1, and others)

GM1 with green garda wrist strap

 

I may be speaking to a small audience on this one, but I cannot contain my momentary excitement, er, relief.  For those GM1 shooters who’ve been using Lightroom or ACR, DXO or Silkypix, this news will be of little consequence.  For those of us who use Apple’s Aperture, today is a good day.  FINALLY (seriously Apple, this camera was announced last Fall and has been in shooters hands for almost 5 months!) Apple has decided to properly support the .RW2 RAW files from the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1.

Along with the GM1, below are the cameras that are now supported in Apple’s most recent Digital Camera RAW Update 5.04:

  • Fujifilm X-E2
  • Fujifilm X-T1
  • Nikon D3300
  • Nikon 1 AW1
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GM1
  • Pentax K-3

If you’re a shooter with any of the above cameras, and use Aperture as your Digital Asset Management software, you can download the new version of Digital Camera RAW v5.04 – HERE or just go to your Software Update and it should be sitting there ready to go.

I will be testing the RAW files from the GM1 shortly and will have an article posted in due time.  In the mean time, if you’d like to receive that when it is posted, feel free to enter your email at the top right of the page to subscribe or find me on Facebook or Twitter.

Happy shooting,

Tyson

*Panasonic GM1 Reviewed – Say hello to my little friend

gm1 and friends

I have spent the better part of the last month shooting with this camera almost exclusively.  I wanted to really get a feel for this tiny machine, its ins and outs, before I wrote up any type of review.  While being the smallest interchangeable lens system camera body currently available, it certainly has some ergonomic drawbacks, but that begs the question, who is this camera for, and can it be a compliment or even replacement for another of the micro 4/3 system cameras, even {gasp} a larger system camera?  Well…

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*Lumix GM1, mine’s smaller. A quick look at the smallest MILC camera.

this little piggy...

How small is too small?  How about a micro 4/3 camera that is smaller than most any fixed lens compact sporting a 1/1.6″ or 1/1.7″ sensor (not to mention any of the 1″ sensor cams, or even most compact p&s cameras I’ve owned)?  Well, I’d heard that the Panasonic Lumix GM1 was small, but I don’t think I was prepared for HOW small this thing actually is.  Have a look…

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