What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?

Started May 6, 2012 | Discussions
jtan163
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What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
May 6, 2012

Like the subject says can anyone please tell me what the 'R' in Olympus MFT lens names stands for?

E.g. What does the "M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm f3.5-5.6II R" have, that the "M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm f3.5-5.6 II Standard Wide Zoom" doesn't?

Looking at the descriptions these pages, it is not at all obvious, to me:

http://www.olympus.com.au/Products/PEN-Cameras/PEN-Lenses/M-Zuiko-Digital-14-42mm-f3-5-5-6II-R.aspx

http://www.olympus.com.au/Products/PEN-Cameras/PEN-Lenses/14-42mm-f3-5-5-6-II-Standard-Wide-Zoom- (PEN)-(1).aspx

At first I thought aha! retractable, then noticed the other was also retractable.

Then I noticed that one of the descriptions mentioned "the first version", so again aha! "revised", only to then notice that later version was the non 'R' version.

I also noticed that all the 'R' models were illustrated in silver metal finish,, but then again not all silver metal finish models are 'R' versions, so that is obviously not it.

So please what is 'R' inOlympus lens nomenclature?

Thanks in advance.

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Klarno
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 6, 2012

"Revised" probably. All they changed with the R lenses versus the immediately previous model is the design of the lens barrel, to make the design look more coherent when mounted on the latest PEN cameras (E-P3, E-PL3, E-PM1).

The "R" lenses are more or less monochromatic, with the black 40-140 being all glossy black and the non-R lenses are two-tone, with the black version being matte black with a silver ring at the base.

The optics of the "II R" vs the "II" versions are identical, and so are the mechanics.
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judge_dredd
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 6, 2012

I recall reading somewhere that the R stands for "removable bayonet ring" which pertains to the cosmetic ring covering the bayonet connector that you spin off when you want to attach a hood or other accessory.

P

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Button Pusher
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 6, 2012

Could it be the I want to be a pirate line of lenses? Arrrrrr matey. Shortened to R?

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Bangers and Mash
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to Klarno, May 6, 2012

Klarno wrote:

"Revised" probably. All they changed with the R lenses versus the immediately previous model is the design of the lens barrel, to make the design look more coherent when mounted on the latest PEN cameras (E-P3, E-PL3, E-PM1).

The "R" lenses are more or less monochromatic, with the black 40-140 being all glossy black and the non-R lenses are two-tone, with the black version being matte black with a silver ring at the base.

The optics of the "II R" vs the "II" versions are identical, and so are the mechanics.

One of the reasons for the change 'R' is in the appearance. The newer version has a more metallic look to it. Not as plastic looking as the older version

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kgwhite
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 6, 2012

Looking at the 14-42 II and II R side-by-side. The II R has different grip surfaces for zoom and MF rings and a bayonet mount cover ring. Those is the only external differences as far as I can tell. There may be some internal differences.

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jtan163
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to kgwhite, May 8, 2012

Thank you all for your responses.

It doesn't sound like anyone really knows, oh well I have a few months to find out before I have to make the choice, I'll keep searching.

Thanks Folks.

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Timur Born
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 8, 2012

Isn't it that only the "R" lenses are advertised to: "incorporate the MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) mechanism and achieve fast, quiet AF using the inner focus method."

Sound to me like the old lenses got "r"evised while new ones don't need the "R" designation anyway.

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Klarno
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to Timur Born, May 8, 2012

Timur Born wrote:

Isn't it that only the "R" lenses are advertised to: "incorporate the MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) mechanism and achieve fast, quiet AF using the inner focus method."

Sound to me like the old lenses got "r"evised while new ones don't need the "R" designation anyway.

No, the predecessors to the R lenses also are MSC designated. There is absolutely no difference in optical design between, say, the 14-42 II and the 14-42 II R, and they have the same autofocus performance with latest firmware. Same with the 40-150 and the 40-150 R (which covers all the R lenses right there).

R was a cosmetic change for the kit lenses for the E-P3, E-PL3 and E-PM1, nothing more. The only Olympus lenses that aren't MSC designated are the 17mm f/2.8 and the original 14-42 which was the basic kit lens for the E-P1, E-P2 and E-PL1.

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AndyGM
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 8, 2012

It just means "Restyled", as there was just a cosmetic change between the Mark II & II R lenses. I actually prefer the styling of the Mark IIs, they look a bit less plasticy to me.

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Optical1
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, May 8, 2012

jtan163 wrote:

Thank you all for your responses.

It doesn't sound like anyone really knows, oh well I have a few months to find out before I have to make the choice, I'll keep searching.

Thanks Folks.

You're getting proper responses. There is no published answer to your question of what the 'R' stands for. I think you're overlooking the responses to your question - it's all cosmetic...buy the one you think looks better.

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Mingjai
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to Optical1, May 8, 2012

Optical1 wrote:

jtan163 wrote:

Thank you all for your responses.

It doesn't sound like anyone really knows, oh well I have a few months to find out before I have to make the choice, I'll keep searching.

Thanks Folks.

You're getting proper responses. There is no published answer to your question of what the 'R' stands for. I think you're overlooking the responses to your question - it's all cosmetic...buy the one you think looks better.

Or is cheaper...

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szlevi
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[R]ing (after the new ring design)...? (nt)
In reply to jtan163, May 8, 2012
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http://instagr.am/p/JvSMWFBYyl
(Now you cannot say I don't have a single pic! :P)

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jtan163
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to Optical1, May 10, 2012

Optical1 wrote:

jtan163 wrote:

Thank you all for your responses.

It doesn't sound like anyone really knows, oh well I have a few months to find out before I have to make the choice, I'll keep searching.

Thanks Folks.

You're getting proper responses. There is no published answer to your question of what the 'R' stands for. I think you're overlooking the responses to your question - it's all cosmetic...buy the one you think looks better.

Hi Optical and other posters,

Just to clarify I agree the responses I got were proper and appropriate and I have no problem with them and am grateful people took the time to respond.

As you say it's hard to find a published answer - I could not find one, which is why I asked here.

Anyway if I gave the impression that I thought the answers I had (and have since continued) to receive were not proper/acceptable/useful etc, then I apologise. That was not my intent.

I was trying to say that it looked like no one else had found or recollect an "official" definition of an "R" lense and that I'd keep looking.

I hope I haven't upset anyone.

Again, thank you all for your responses.
Jason

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jtan163
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, Jul 29, 2012

Ha!

I finally found what sounds like a credible answer from a credible source:

http://www.sansmirror.com/lenses/lens-faq/

Thom Hogan reckons that the R (at least on the 14-42) means a faster AF motor and a hidden converter bayonet.

II: This revision added a bayonet that supports add-on converters at the front of the lens

IIR: This revision hides the bayonet with a removable ring and reportedly also has a faster AF motor, which helps with the third-generation Olympus autofocus system (e.g. E-P3, E-PL3, E-PM1)

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Mike_PEAT
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I HATE their new ring disigns!!!!
In reply to szlevi, Jul 29, 2012

What was wrong with the old one?

The new knurled design has a scratchy feeling, like all knurled devices. I'm looking for the right size rubber bands to cover them. I much prefer te feel of the old style, like on my 14-150.

Knurled metal bothers me so much that I had to wrap my Maglight in tape so I don't have to touch the knurled section.

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rrr_hhh
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, Jul 29, 2012

jtan163 wrote:

Ha!

I finally found what sounds like a credible answer from a credible source:

http://www.sansmirror.com/lenses/lens-faq/

Thom Hogan reckons that the R (at least on the 14-42) means a faster AF motor and a hidden converter bayonet.

II: This revision added a bayonet that supports add-on converters at the front of the lens

IIR: This revision hides the bayonet with a removable ring and reportedly also has a faster AF motor, which helps with the third-generation Olympus autofocus system (e.g. E-P3, E-PL3, E-PM1)

I think that the faster AF was implemented between version I and version II. At least that is what most people said when version II was issued. I do really think that there are only cosmetic changes between version II and II R. But the I've Bly ad version I and II R in my own hands.

Version II was a great improvement over version I, if there were a lot of differences between version II and II R, why did Olympus not change the name to version III. I think that Tom Hogan is confused here.

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rrr_hhh

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Klarno
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Re: What does 'R' designate in Olympus MFT lens names?
In reply to jtan163, Jul 29, 2012

jtan163 wrote:

Ha!

I finally found what sounds like a credible answer from a credible source:

http://www.sansmirror.com/lenses/lens-faq/

Thom Hogan reckons that the R (at least on the 14-42) means a faster AF motor and a hidden converter bayonet.

II: This revision added a bayonet that supports add-on converters at the front of the lens

IIR: This revision hides the bayonet with a removable ring and reportedly also has a faster AF motor, which helps with the third-generation Olympus autofocus system (e.g. E-P3, E-PL3, E-PM1)

Except people who've used both on the later PEN models have found no difference in AF speed. And the 40-150 R doesn't have a fa├žade for the bayonet.

The 14-42 II and 40-150 were both updated via firmware to support the same "FAST" AF scheme employed in the E-P3, E-PL3 and E-PM1.

All the evidence points to a cosmetic change, and nothing else.
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deleted_081301
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Re: I HATE their new ring disigns!!!!
In reply to Mike_PEAT, Jul 29, 2012

My 14-42 1:3.5-5.6 has an L on it not an R

is this wildly different ??

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Klarno
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Re: I HATE their new ring disigns!!!!
In reply to deleted_081301, Jul 29, 2012

DickyUK wrote:

My 14-42 1:3.5-5.6 has an L on it not an R

is this wildly different ??

The original 14-42 was released with the E-P1. The 14-42 L was released with the E-PL1, with the same mechanics overall (the front element rotates as it focuses, right?) but with a plastic lens mount instead of metal. A "lite" version.

The 14-42 II was initially released with the E-PL1s in Japan, and then was included with the E-PL2 and E-P2 kits. This upgrade brought a silent "MSC" designated AF motor, internal focus, and a bayonet usable for a lens hood and various other attachments.

The current version, the 14-42 II R, was released with the E-P3, E-PL3, and E-PM1, both as a cosmetic change to fit the design of these metal-clad cameras, and to capitalize on the new "FAST AF" system in these cameras. The firmware of the 14-42 II was later updated to provide the same capability.

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