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Keywords: Olympus Zuiko Wide Zoom Four-Thirds


Registered: March 2013
Posts: 3
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by 108
Review Date: 10/22/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $250.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: sharpness, IQ, contrast, colour rendition, ease of use
Cons: none so far

I bought this lens for a bargain one month ago . It's my 3rd high quality 4/3 lens after the 14-54 and the Panaleica 25 f1.4 and I must say I am very very pleased with the results . I wanted to use it for achitecture and real estate shots and this lens delivers . Tack sharp, good colours and contrast and overall this lens has a "personality" of its own just like the Panaleica . Issues I read above about soft corners on the newer 16 mp sensors i don't know , I use it on old 4/3 bodies, E620 and 510 . On my E620 it just shines . First post here mentionned better quality with the 14-54, well as far as my own copy is concerned the 11-22 beats it easily until 22 mm , and is much "finer" and more "elegant" IQ wise . My copy of the 14-54 is rather soft from 14 to 25, but becomes excellent thereafter and shines from 30 to 54 , so I suppose the two lenses complement each other pretty well ;-). I am awaiting a long and sweet relationship with this lens, the day my 4/3 bodies die I will have to get a E-M1 for it since it is not CDAF compatible like the 14-54 and Leica and takes ages to focus on my M4/3 Epl-2 .

Registered: April 2014
Posts: 7
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by MichaelShea
Review Date: 4/26/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $361.00| Rating: 8 

Pros: Great build, smooth handling, dust free, lack of distortion, centre sharpness, excellent contrast
Cons: Mediocre against glare, disappointing edge sharpness at widest settings

This is the only lens model I've purchased twice and despite its shortcomings remains my favourite wide-angled zoom. I have only ever used it on micro four thirds cameras and my original copy was wholly and necessarily manually focused on a Panasonic Lumix G1. I was instantly struck by its biting centre sharpness, superb colour rendering and interesting contrast. I found it a perfect zoom range to fit in with my own photo priorities, which involve architecture and landscape subjects.

It has a very solid and reassuring build quality and on DSLR-shaped cameras balances well. Even without image stabilisation, I have always found that it is easy to keep still. Manual focus 'by the wire' is rather a noisy affair, but accurate critical focus brings some outstanding results.

I came to regret parting with the lens during 2011, and experienced variable results with Pentax and Fuji systems respectively in a three year intervening period, before re-discovering (micro) four thirds recently. My newest MFT camera is a Panasonic Lumix G5 and by no means state of the art, but a marked improvement in terms of dynamic range. A few weeks ago I bought an ex-demo 11-22mm lens for a bargain price, to add to my 50mm macro and 14-54mm mk1 zoom.

To be brutally honest, the somewhat larger sensor of the G5 draws greater attention to edge blurring at wider zoom settings. Even in the middle of the zoom range, there is an obvious marked visible disparity between results in the centre and sides, and this is particularly apparent when the objects under scrutiny are distant and small. But the middle of the frame is still absolutely brilliant and the overall punchiness of the output makes all pictures taken with the lens memorable.

I feel however that contrary to many published reviews by Olympus four thirds users with smaller sensor cameras, the 14-54mm universal zoom is now pound for pound a better purchase, not merely because it covers a far more versatile focal range, but given that if anything, the overall image quality taking the whole of the frame into account is actually superior.

Low morning or early evening sun is a bit of a problem for the lens. Catch it at an angle and you are likely to experience flare and a purple tint. Use of the hood is essential, although that won't eliminate the issue altogether.

I should add that a neglected virtue of the 11-22mm lens that sets it apart from any zoom I've ever used for architecture pictures is the almost total lack of distortion. Never mind about software that removes it after the fact, the problem is never there in the first place because of the optics of the lens itself. So straight vertical lines remain straight, so long as you keep your camera level. And on seascape pictures, the horizon is dead level regardless of how close it is to the top or bottom of the frame.

Single shot auto-focus is acceptable on my G5. Video and moving subjects don't interest me much and if they did, I would not be buying four thirds lenses in this day and age, superb build quality or not. In due course I'll probably get an E-M1 for even better results, but it's a complete myth that four thirds lenses are unusable on other MFT bodies. The photographers who believe such nonsense have missed out on some of the finest enthusiasts lenses ever manufactured. This one is not in the very top drawer, but not very far down either.

Overall, I love this lens very much and can recommend it, subject to the provisos above. The pros still outweigh the cons and it is a joy to use.

Registered: May 2012
Posts: 7
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by jnolan
Review Date: 5/31/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $600.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: Image quality, Focal length range, Size, Weather sealing
Cons: Chromatic aberration, Distortion, Cost

I'd first like to address the cons I've listed above. The chromatic aberration and distortion are to be expected given the zoom range. In that regard, I suppose these cons are applicable to all but the most advanced wide zooms. In truth, I have no problem eliminating them in post-processing. The cost is a tad high.. around $800 new. $700 would seem more appropriate. That said, I got mine used so it's not really an issue.

The pros are much more apparent than the cons. I put this on my E-5, which means I never worry about the weather. It's a good sized lens, but it's not overwhelmingly huge. If you compare it to the 9-18 or the kit 14-42, though, it is certainly larger and heavier.

The image quality is very good. It's a High Grade lens, a its image quality is a noticeable step above the Standard Grade lenses such as the kit 14-42. The colors pop more and the contrast is more pleasing.

Of all the lenses I have, this is my favorite lens to travel with. It doesn't weigh enough for me to get tired, it offers great image quality, and its speed and focal length range suit my destinations.

One thing that sets this lens apart from the 9-18 is its speed. I've recently returned from a trip to Stockholm, Sweden. The old quarter of the city (Gamla Stan) has narrow streets and alleys. This lens isn't a crazy f1.4 or even a f2.0, but the f2.8 at the wide end is great for capturing these sorts of environments at the time of day when the light is good. 11mm is wide enough for my purposes. And it's long end, while not crazy fast at f3.5, is fast enough, and it's essentially a normal lens (technically, 21mm is normal for a 4/3 sensor.. remember a 50mm lens is not normal on 35mm film.. a 42mm lens is).

In short, you get everything from a decently fast, fairly wide angle to a normal, all with great image quality and sufficient speed.

To me, the only realistic alternative to this lens is the 12-60, but then you have to deal with the 12-60's complex distortion (and higher price).

Registered: December 2009
Posts: 1
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by donmcmahan
Review Date: 12/14/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $550.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: image quality, lack of distortion,
Cons: limited zoom range, zoom range overlap with standard zooms

since the introduction of the 12-60 this lens seemed to have no place in the overall lens lineup of the 4/3rds system. with the 12-60 being a standard zoom that is nearly as wide and the 9-18 even wider though not as fast and the 7-14 for the ultra-wide money is no object segment of the market the 11-22 was left out in the cold. but it is just too good a lens to not have a place in my bag. a used 11-22 and 14-54 combined, cost me a little less than a new 12-60. I think I got quite a good deal. i get an extra mm in width, a bit faster, outstanding IQ and the only trade off is the extra 6mm of reach at the long end and the convenience of just the one lens. i am happy with this combination.

Registered: February 2009
Posts: 3
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by Karellen
Review Date: 4/6/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 10 

Pros: Superb sharpness, CA, distortion; fast, wide; dust and splash-proof; vast DOF with Four-Thirds
Cons: expensive 72mm filters; exposed front element

This is the most distortion free optic I've ever used. In fact, I chose it over Olympus' excellent 12-60 for this reason. The psychological effect of seeing truly straight lines in a photo where they were straight in life is never forgotten once you've used a lens like the 11-22.

Registered: March 2009
Posts: 2
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by barcoiris
Review Date: 3/7/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $979.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: wide angle, fast, very fast focussing, weather proof
Cons: very expensive!

i have two E-1 bodys and the 11/22 stays for ever in one of them. all around lens with f2.8 at 11mm! almost allways at that range where you must pay attention to distortion. most of the times i have to use cs3 to correct lines wich makes me lose some area, but for interior is very usefull.

Registered: March 2007
Posts: 5
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by epixx
Review Date: 3/16/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $700.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, fast, great range, weather sealed
Cons: Nothing

This is my combined wide angle, walk-around and travel lens. It's wide enough for anything I do, but have reach enough to be a great walk-around lens as well. Since both this lens and my camera (E-1) are weather sealed, I never worry about rain, spray or dust.

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 4
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by KenH
Review Date: 1/2/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $629.00| Rating: 10 

Cons: None

This lens has very high Image Quality with very little distortion for such a wide angle.

This is a great lens to add to your Zuiko collection.

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 13
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by dccps
Review Date: 12/7/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $675.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: excellent size and very good field of view, sharp, good color
Cons: cost of Olympus lenses is relatively high

An excellent lens for scenics and traveling. Small while still fast enough (aperture) for flexible shooting situations. I am still not sold on 4/3rds system... (I use this system, however, when I want good photos and want to travel lighter than with my other SLRs) sensors are too small and noise a bit too high for higher ISOs, but the size and weight of these lenses is a great selling point and the optical quality of this lens is excellent.

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 4
Olympus 11-22mm f/2.8-3.5 Zuiko Digital review by Jay
Review Date: 10/23/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $675.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: moderate small, good apeture (F2.8/3.5) and excellent sharpness and Contrast
Cons: none

A fantastic lens -- very little distortion or chromatic aberrations, excellent sharpness and contrast. A good size -- not too big nor too small (smaller F-stops) and fits nicely on the E-1.

My travel kit is the E-1 with the 11-22 and the Sigma 18-125. These two lenses provide 22-250 field of view in 35mm terms. I like the overlap in the normal range so that I won't be caught with the wrong lens on the camera in normal situations.


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