Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ

December 14, 2011 | Zoltan Arva-Toth | Lenses | 5 Comments |
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The Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ is a new dust- and splash-proof, 24-100mm equivalent power zoom for the Micro Four Thirds system. Aimed at both videographers and photographers, the lightweight (211g) M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm f/3.5-5.6 comes with a new ultra-smooth, variable-speed, near-silent electromagnetic zoom mechanism and offers “blazing quick” AF speeds. The optical formula comprises 10 elements arranged in 9 groups, including 1 ED (extra-low dispersion), 1 HR (high refractive index), 1 DSA (dual super aspherical) and 2 aspherical lens elements. Offering up to 0.36x maximum magnification that allows users to fill the frame with a subject that measures just 48mmx36mm, the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED f/3.5-5.6 EZ also doubles as a quasi-macro lens. Priced at £349.99 / €399.00 / $499.99, the lens will sell separately and as part of a kit with one of the three newest PEN cameras: the E-PL3, the E-PM1 and the flagship PEN E-P3.

Olympus Press Release

Olympus makes zooming even smoother

A new zoom lens for a new PEN generation
The M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ

Hamburg, 14 December 2011 – Olympus’s new generation of multi-talented PEN cameras can enjoy a new Standard Zoom, the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ. It comes with a new ultra-smooth, near-silent electromagnetic zoom mechanism that powers the lens on its own – no potentially jerky wristwork required. This makes it easy for anyone to make great home movies. Add in variable zoom speed and blazing quick auto focus, and it’s the perfect zoom lens for recording movies and portraits. It’s also ideal for high-quality macros and wide-angle shots. With an 84° max. angle of view, 24-100mm* focal range and manual zoom mode, this exceptional lens gives PEN owners all the options. The PEN line-up has a multi-talented standard zoom lens to match. It goes on sale from end of January 2012, for €399.

Smoother and quieter
The M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ takes the movie zoom lens to a new level. An electromagnetically powered zoom mechanism lets you zoom in and out smoothly and quietly, at a constant rate. This avoids the camera-shake that often occurs when you zoom by hand and cuts out the noise of motor gears in the background, which can potentially ruin your movie. You can set the motor to zoom at one of three set speeds. The ‘slow’ setting allows time to concentrate on composing while ‘fast’ makes sure no shot is missed.

Faster and closer
The new lens delivers 4.2x standard magnification and is very quick. The electromagnetic motor makes for near-instant response and, in combination with Olympus’ proprietary MSC (Movie and Still Compatible) technology, ensures fast and near-silent autofocus. For this lens, Olympus enhanced MSC by adding a Linear Motor Drive that makes use of the electromagnetic motor to make focussing even faster, quieter – and better for recording movies.

Automatic and manual
As you’d expect from an Olympus PEN lens, the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ delivers superb image quality, thanks not least to multilayer coating on all the lenses and two aspherical lenses that correct common zoom aberrations. The pristine quality is particularly evident in Macro mode, which offers 0.72x* magnification at 20 to 50cm. Less familiar is the new L-Fn button (a first on a PEN lens), which prevents the camera focussing on the wrong subject by mistake. Should something suddenly come between the lens and your intended subject, you simply push this button to temporarily suspend autofocus until it’s moved out of the way. For fans of hands-on shooting, the lens offers another rare treat – the option to suspend autofocus altogether and switch to the manual zoom ring.

The Micro Four Thirds standard makes PEN cameras especially compact and portable, which allows PEN owners to shoot in all kinds of places and conditions. So it’s comforting to know this lens is fitted with the same top-notch dust- and splash-proof mechanism originally developed for high-end ZUIKO DIGITAL Top Pro Series lenses. Now, wherever you go with your PEN you’ve got a zoom lens that’s tough enough to go too. 

The M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ will sell separately and as part of a kit with one of the three newest PEN cameras: the PEN Lite (E-PL3), PEN Mini (E-PM1) and the flagship PEN E-P3. A matching protection filter, lens case and hood are also available.

* 35mm equivalent.

For a full list of specifications, please go to http://www.olympus-europa.com/consumer/pen-camera_pen_21693_accessory_m_zuiko_digital_ed_12-50mm_1_3_5-6_3_ez_-_specifications_25228.htm

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5 Comments | Newest Oldest First | Post a Comment

#1 sekura

There is no Olympus E-PM3.

11:28 am - Wednesday, December 14, 2011

#2 Zoltan Arva-Toth

Well spotted! The funniest thing is that the typo - which we've now corrected - was present in the original Olympus press release too.

12:10 pm - Wednesday, December 14, 2011

#3 Coffee

> ... the lightweight (211g) M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm f/3.5-5.6 comes with a
> new ultra-smooth, variable-speed, near-silent electromagnetic zoom mechanism ,,,

I wonder why manufacturers still bother with such useless gimmicks. There's nothing more intuitive, more instant than a properly designed, smoothly operating mechanical zoom ring. I can't imagine anyone preferring fiddly pushbuttons on the top or the back of the camera over such direct control on the lens when composing a picture. I also wonder how much extra cost went into the development and the manufacture of this "feature" and to what degree this useless extra will contribute to the overall repair returns in the long run? I think the money would have been better spent on further improvements in optical quality, choice of materials, durability and such. On the other hand ... a high quality 24-100mm lens is almost the ideal lens for me. If it was 20mm longer it would be even better as for me 24-120mm cover 95% of all photographic situations. Such a lens could become a fixed feature on my camera.

5:21 pm - Wednesday, December 14, 2011

#4 Pat

People need to stop complaining about this lens being a zoom, or it being slow. Yes, I'm sad its not a F/4 constant or a 3.5-5.6, but its $499. Also, stop complaining about the zoom, its a gimmick for still shooters and its a blessing for the thousands asking for a lens that makes the video SLR camera a viable alternative to small chip dedicated video cameras. Video Cameras have power zooms for a reason.

10:18 pm - Wednesday, December 14, 2011

#5 dj

its the Perfect outdoor nature lens! f3.5-6.3 is good enough for landscape photography. the close focus is excellent for outdoor macros and the weather sealing if perfect for when it rains. I use a tripod for 85% of my work so this little lens is gonna be great!

10:52 pm - Wednesday, December 14, 2011