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micro four thirds

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Panasonic 20mm f1.7 II product images first impressions (4 of 5)ISO 4001-500 sec at f - 3.5

Panasonic may be working on an extremely tantalizing wide-angle prime lens as Egami has spotted a new patent describing several 12mm lenses for Micro Four Thirds cameras—one of which has a maximum aperture of f1.2. To top it off the patent also says the lenses will all feature optical image stabilization. The OIS feature does not sound immediately useful for landscapes, but it could help in a pinch capturing spanning scenes at night or shooting stars without a tripod.

In the patent the Japanese electronics company is exploring multiple 12mm lenses all with different wide-open apertures including f1.2, f1.4, f2.0, and f2.8. We’re hoping that Panasonic decides to go forward with the f1.2 model, because of the two times crop factor of Micro Four Thirds sensors will effectively turn the lens into a 24mm f2.4 in terms of 35mm equivalency.

It’s not as fast as the Canon 24mm f1.4L but the lens is still an incredibly unique in the Micro Four Thirds world. Panasonic has already produced some incredible short focal length primes such as the 15mm f1.7 and 20mm f1.7 II so we expect a repeat performance from Panasonic once again with this rumored piece of glass.

 

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Panasonic GM1 first impressions Photo Plus Expo 2013 (7 of 7)ISO 64001-40 sec at f - 2.5

Big rumors in the Micro Four Thirds world say Panasonic is working on a new sensor that will be integrated with a new interchangeable lens body and a new fixed lens compact. 43Rumors has confirmed that much with an anonymous tipster and that says the cameras could be come by late August or early September putting it in the sweet spot for a reveal at Photokina. Other than confirming the existence of such cameras we do not yet have any specs on either of Panasonic’s future camera units.

The Panasonic LX8 has been long rumored to feature a new bigger sensor. While early reports suggested the high-end, fixed lens compact would feature a 1-inch sensor it made more sense if Panasonic leveraged the actual sensor technology it already uses. These latest rumors seem to corroborate this theory.

As for a new Micro Four Thirds interchangeable lens camera, Panasonic has been long over due for a new model since the GX7 launched last August. What’s more Panasonic has been playing second fiddle to Olympus for too long even with its highly regarded line of SLR-styled Lumix cameras like the GH4. So we’re hoping for something that will be truly eye catching to photographers as the Japanese camera company tends to cater to gear nuts.

Samyang Teaser

Reports say that Photokina will be a big show for Nikon, Canon, Fujifilm, and all the big hitters but what about the little guys? After a relatively quiet period, Samyang may introduce a new 50mm f1.5 lens for Micro Four Thirds cameras at Photokina according to a report from 43 Rumors. Taking the crop factor into account the lens would effectively be a 100mm f3 lens by full frame standards, which should make it a still bokehlicious macro and long portrait lens.

As with Samyang’s other lenses we expect this future release will come at a low price without sacrificing optical quality. That said don’t put up too many hopes on seeing image stabilization, autofocus, or many other features on this piece of kit. In order to stay competitive with other optics like the Olympus 50mm f2, Samyang’s new offering will have to stay below $500. Luckily the rumored lens will have a leg up with faster glass.

On the complete opposite spectrum of affordable there’s the SLR Magic’s Noktor 50mm f/0.95 HyperPrime lens. The only trade off to the extremely wide-open lens is it a manual focus-only lens, which some users might find difficult to use or gratifying to grab focus all on their own.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Olympus OMD EM1 Product Photos (2 of 8)ISO 2001-40 sec at f - 2.8

The Olympus OMD EM1 might have released last October but it seems the Micro Four Thirds still has some untapped potential. 43Rumors has received a tip that an upcoming firmware update will allow EM1 users to shoot 4K video plus a whole lot more video shooting options.

It seems almost too good to be true that a simple software patch supposedly coming this September would suddenly unlock 4K video-shooting capability. But we’ve also seen the way other software patches like Magic Lantern completely open up cameras for more dynamic range, RAW video, and other ways manufacturers never intended. So with that said, it could indeed be possible.

With 4K in its arsenal the OMD EM1 would be a real video-shooting powerhouse. Thanks to its built-in 5-axis stabilization and great electronic viewfinder, it would make for the perfect small digital video camera if paired with the right accessories.

On top of a purported firmware patch coming, the EM1 will also supposedly get a new silver model announced at Photokina. It’s pretty common to see camera re-released in new colors so this could very well happen. Unlike the OMD EM5 and EM10, the EM1 has only been available in black, so anyone holding out for a silver version of this retrofied camera might not have to wait much longer.

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Olympus OMD EM10 product photos (3 of 7)ISO 4001-60 sec at f - 4.5

43 Rumors has heard from two trusted Olympus sources that the company planning to announce a new OMD Micro Four Thirds camera at Photokina. Other than noting the possibility of a new entry in the OMD line there’s no word on specs, but with cameras like the OMD EM10 and EM1 already, Olympus has a great platform to build on.

Most likely we imagine—and this is purely speculation—Olympus will update either the OMD EM1 or EM5, for a fully weather-sealed camera body. We can also expect high-resolution sensor bumping up the megapixels past 16 along with an improved autofocus system adding more phase-detect AF points. The likely route is that they’ll update the EM5–though folks who purchased the camera have been waiting patiently for a firmware update to bring focus peaking to the camera.

Since announcing the OMD EM10 in late January, the Japanese camera company has been completely silent on what it’s planning next. This was also partially because the camera company released five new models in relatively quick succession over the past two years. Since then Olympus has practically repackaged the same, but excellent sensor, in-body stabilization and quick AF technologies into different camera bodies.

With the next iteration we expect Olympus will unveil something truly different–perhaps a ground breaking EVF or some other feature. The OMD has proven itself as a capable little street shooter to making professional grade landscapes and portraits, and its even the perfect camera for families. With in that mind we’re absolutely ecstatic about what Olympus could possibly have cooked up.

Whatever they come up with, it will need to win over folks from the Fujifilm, Samsung and Sony circles.

Mitakon 50mm f0.95 Sample Image

After producing the über-fast Speedmaster 50mm f0.95 lens for full-frame e-Mount cameras, 43 Rumors has heard word the Mitakon is “seriously considering” producing the same lens for Micro Four Thirds cameras.

While we haven’t had the honor of using the lens ourselves (yet!), from a few image samples we’ve seen how the lens produces dreamy bokeh with the smoothness of a milky fondue. Amazingly the lens also produces incredibly sharp images even when fully wide open. We expect the lens will have the same quality but slightly less pronounced bokeh due to the 2x crop factor of Micro Four Thirds sensors.

If Mitakon decides to really follow through with bringing the lens over to cameras like the OMD EM10 and EM1 it will come into a field of serious competition. Voigtländer has produced a very close Nokton 42mm f0.95lens and SLRmagic’s 50mm f0.95 glass.

If the Speedmaster 50mm f0.95 comes at a similarly affordable price it could be a killer lens for a bargain compared to the Voigtländer and SLRmagic.