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Keywords: Olympus F.Zuiko OM Standard Prime Adapter Four-Thirds Tested


Registered: December 2015
Posts: 1
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by wilsonpettit
Review Date: 12/2/2015 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $25.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: price
Cons: not much

Strengths: Sharp, even at f/1.8, gorgeous bokeh, cheap a sin (or so cheap it ought to be a sin, take your pick), built very solidly, small and light, renders light beautifully.

Weaknesses: OM mount is film-only so you'll need a mount adapter for digital, no autofocus (obviously) so you'll have to MF through the tiny viewfinders on today's DSLRs.

Bottom Line:
Wow, what an amazing lens for the price of a pizza delivery! I'm using it mounted to an Olympus E-300 digital (8 megapixel) with an OM adapter bought on eBay for half the price of a pizza delivery.

The lens renders light beautifully. Contrast and tonality are subtle and lovely, while in-focus areas are sharp. Bokeh is lovely. To a one, images from this lens have a timeless, clasic look that you don't often see anymore--even the "snapshots," especially at f/1.8.

I'm more than happy to sacrifice autofocus to have the opportunity to shoot a lens like this on a modern digital body. What a joy! | |

Registered: March 2013
Posts: 3
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by 108
Review Date: 3/24/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $45.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: cheap, light,sharp, excellent color rendition, fun.
Cons: none

Got interested in this lens after much reading on the Internet. I waited till I found a "made in Japan" engraved on the front since those are supposed to be the best, and MC also, according to OM gurus. I wanted to try these old lenses on my "old" E520, just for fun. I equipped months before the old body with a split image focusing screen purchased from Taïwan ( 75 euros ) and an viewfinder magnifier ( x 1.36 ) for 35 euros from Hong Kong. This has proven a very good decision and makes manual focus much easier.... until f5.6. Then at smaller apertures the screen darkens and it gets complicated. In very low light just forget it. Another alternative, and easier too, is using Live view on the Dslr or back screen on EPL-2 for exemple, works best with the EVF. It just means buying another ( OM to M4/3 ) adapter, preferably from some Hong Kong dealer since Olympus's are so expensive. So I finally purchased the lens on eBay germany and just could not wait to try it on. And man I just fell on my ass when I saw what I got with this little wonder. But first the manual focus, no confirmation from the body : tricky at the beginning, then it gets better and after a day or so you develop a feel for it, it's not just the aligned split screen it's that little extra brightness that indicates you got it. Now 90 % of my shots are in focus, and by focus I mean real focus, not the so-so AF I get from my Olympus kit lenses, good as they are, or from the Digital 14-54 mm, or even from my Pana Summilux 25 mm f1.4, expensive as it is. This lens is magic and I feel like a kid in a candy store. If you pay attention to what you're doing , you can get perfectly sharp shots at 1.8 or at least sharp shots of what you want to be sharp in the picture. At f2.8 and to f5.6 it becomes wonderful, never a miss. Color rendition and depth are super, and with the E520 you don't get that cold digital nikon-like picture treatment. it's a magic lens for portraits, details of houses, details of buildings, close-ups on table items, on machinery. For lanscape not worth it. i leave the aperture ring on f2.8 now, way enough for low light, and keep my iso at reasonnable 800, except naturally by broad daylight up to 5.6 and iso 100. This little lens is a joy to use and now that I caught the Zuiko fever I'll go for the 200 mm f4 and the 28 mm f2.8 as well.

Registered: February 2013
Posts: 1
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by cwrt
Review Date: 2/25/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $25.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp enough at F1.8 and gets pretty good by F4, nice colors, light weight, very cheap
Cons: a little stiff focus

This review pertains to a black nose F.Zuiko F1.8, Serial 16xxxxx, tested om E-PM1.

The particular copy I got is much better than Nikkor 50mm F1.8 from around the same time. I tried both E series Nikon and the normal one and both were much worse wide open. Stepped down they are probably comparable.

I don't see much CA or distortion. Wide open there is a little bit of 'soap coating' that you often see in old lenses wide open. It is however nowhere near the Nikkors. There are some flares even from distant objects that could be troublesome.

In terms of sharpness at F1.8 I would say it is on par with the M4/3 14-42mm kit. At closed-down apertures it is a little better.

One minor flaw could that, at least in my copy, the focus is somewhat stiff. This is a little of a problem during shooting video.

Registered: May 2012
Posts: 7
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by jnolan
Review Date: 5/31/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 7 

Pros: Size, Cost, Build
Cons: Performance with 4/3 sensor

I have a third party adapter that I use to mount OM lenses on my Olympus E-5. I actually have multiple adapters because the third party copies are so cheap (and functionally the same).

I have both this f-1.8 lens and the 50mm f-1.4 OM Zuiko. I find the f-1.4 superior to the f-1.8. The f-1.4 is definitely a pain to deal with wide open, but stopped down to an estimated f-1.8 it's clearer than this one wide open. At f-2, the f-1.4 lens objectively clearer. I've been using 'clearer' because it's not a focusing issue or the condition of the lens. Both lenses are clean, free of scratches and fungus.

As other reviewers have noted, there isn't one f-1.8 lens. the OM line existed for long enough that we're forced to lump a number of different lenses together as if they're the same product. I'm not sure, then, if my model is simply inferior to the other versions. I unfortunately don't have the lens with me right now, so I'm not sure of the details regarding its production run.

So, my review ends up being fairly useless. I guess you can take away the fact that the OM Zuiko 50mm f-1.4 lenses are decent. It's slightly larger than the f-1.8, but not that much larger.

Registered: May 2011
Posts: 1
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by Stoka
Review Date: 5/23/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 


I used this lens for several years in the early 1980's, especially on an Olympus OM10, which I used as a lightweight travel camera in India.
I've posted some images shot with this lens at the following flickr addresses.

Note that the slides are very old and I have just recently scanned them to digital.

Registered: March 2010
Posts: 1
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by SLRGuy
Review Date: 3/11/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 0 


"As a micro four thirds camera, the EP-1 produces a 2x ''crop factor,'' meaning lenses used with it provide an effective field of view that is double their listed focal length. So in this case, the 50mm ƒ/1.8 operates effectively as a 100mm ƒ/1.8 lens."

Not quite true.

On the E-P1 the effective field of view is HALF that of the lens if it were on a full-frame camera, not double.

Put the other way, the FOV is that of a 100mm lens on a full frame camera.

The focal length does not change. If you could change the focal length by altering the size of the sensor or film, we wouldn't need lenses of varying focal lengths.

Registered: July 2009
Posts: 6
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by Ashley_Pomeroy
Review Date: 7/9/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $30.00| Rating: 8 

Pros: Excellent image quality, small, light, chic, works well with adapters, cheap!
Cons: Slightly wobby aperture ring, not much "character"

Literally the day before this went up, I wrote a short article about the lens for my blog, where I tested it briefly on a full-frame Canon 5D. I was looking exclusively at its extreme corner performance at f/8. On a Canon 5D I concluded that it is at least as sharp as Canon's EF 50mm f/1.8, in the extreme corner, at f/8. The colour balance seemed to be relatively cool. Mine was a later version, with a serial code that indicates it was made in January 1983, with "Made in Japan" written on the front.

I imagine that its performance on a less pixel-dense sensor than the Four Thirds standard would be very, very good. If the Micro Four Thirds - OM adapter cost $17 rather than $170 it would make sense as a backup. For $200 it is silly. Of note, I have a Pentax Takumar 55mm f/2 which is almost as small as the Zuiko, and seems to perform just as well, at least in the corner at f/8.

It would be interesting to see how the Olympus 24mm f/2.8 fares with such a setup. I have one of these lenses and it is very, very sharp right in the centre even at f/2.8.

Registered: July 2009
Posts: 1
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by chucknorcutt
Review Date: 7/8/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 


Thanks for the review. It was good to see one of my favorite oldies given new life. But there are a couple problems with your review. There are at least 5 versions of the OM Zuiko 50/1.8. This is one of the older ones which can be determined by examining the text on the name ring. Despite your praise for the multicoating this version was not multicoated. And, even if it was, the mulitcoating shouldn't have any effect on chromatic aberration. The final version was multicoated (as were others before it) and is a superior performer to this one.

Chuck Norcutt

Registered: October 2007
Posts: 4
Olympus 50mm f/1.8 OM F.Zuiko review by adamleahyphotography
Review Date: 7/6/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 0 


Just wanted to say thanks guys for doing this test! I have this lens sitting on my desk right now. I carried it with my OM1 on my shoulder for about 20 years. The camera body was destroyed, but the lens survived. Anyway, I'm buying the new Pen as soon as it's available with the 17mm lens. I'll get the adapter to use my old 50mm too. Will post on my experience with it later. Smile Thanks again for doing the testing on this, can't wait to do my own.


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