VERY nice! Composition, lighting... Very eye-catching.
WhiteBeard: About pricing... A long time ago, lenses were made with a lot of metal and glass - not polycarbonate - and 70-200mm zooms (35mm eq.) were the most popular and mostly least expensive zooms available. Now, Panasonic wants to make us believe that putting an O-ring, less glass (polished by much more precise and efficient automated means than before) and putting back some aluminum instead of the usual polycarbonate is sufficient to warrant a 1500$ price tag... Anybody out there familiar about Marketing Theory and the expression "Whatever the Market can bear"?
Yes, most - not all - Panasonic lenses come with OIS which increases cost but bear in mind that their optical design is sloppy in terms of distorsiom and CA since both are controlled by the camera. This brings cost down compared to older lens/camera systems. For example, the excellent PL 25mm F1.4 has ludicrously high amounts of barrel distorsion on its own.
I don't debate that fact; indeed, it's pretty much what I was saying: all lenses were once made out of metal as a matter of fact. Now, the simple adding of a metal barrel and focusing ring brings an aura of PERCEIVED pro-quality that helps to make buyers swallow their higher price. As for the real cost behind the "pro" lenses, a lot has to do with the more intricate design cycle to make everything right and yes, to the higher cost of the machinery needed (although that cost is amortized over thousands of lenses) and material but the market price is half cost and half (3/4?) perception. Ask Leica and Hasselblad...
About pricing... A long time ago, lenses were made with a lot of metal and glass - not polycarbonate - and 70-200mm zooms (35mm eq.) were the most popular and mostly least expensive zooms available. Now, Panasonic wants to make us believe that putting an O-ring, less glass (polished by much more precise and efficient automated means than before) and putting back some aluminum instead of the usual polycarbonate is sufficient to warrant a 1500$ price tag... Anybody out there familiar about Marketing Theory and the expression "Whatever the Market can bear"?
Thanks for the informative preview; shame about the ridiculou$ pricing though... BTW, kudos for the sample gallery; you manage to take great pictures even when they are meant primarily just to evaluate a lens!
One of my favorite lenses in my old Minolta SLR system was the 100mm f:3.5 Rokkor. I made tons of portraits and close-up macro shots with it and found it razor-sharp with great depth of field control so shots made at "large" aperture really made the subject in focus stand out. A quick comparison with the Oly will point out why I'm so impressed by this new 60mm:- The Rokkor probably weighted as much as the 60mm Oly WITH camera attached.- The Oly's F:2.8 aperture is a plus over the Rokkor's F:3.5: more stable handheld macro shots and better "bokeh", especially combined with the Oly's longer focal lenght (120mm eq. compared to 100).- The older lens needed an extension tube to cover the 1:2 to 1:1 range.- Price: The Rokkor set me back 295$ in 1974 (I know, Antiquity), so 500$ for the Olympus in 2012 is a bargain indeed. After the 25mm f:1.4 Pana-Leica, this is the one that makes my mouth water....
ProfHankD: What a strange problem to be lens specific!
The "banding" I've seen in postings is really pretty straightforward-looking single-pixel lines with consistently wrong color -- easy to recognize and fix. Actually, much easier to fix than the Fuji X10 "white orbs" problem that my free DeOrbIt tool fixed... but I didn't get all that positive a response to doing that work for the community, so I'm not rushing to put a post-processing fix up for this technically less challenging (and less publishable as research) defect.
Olympus should be able to fix this pretty easily as a post-processing step when the 20mm Panasonic lens is detected, but I'd guess they're trying to fix it at the cause, and that's probably some lens-induced electrical glitch disturbing sensor readout. Really impressive that Olympus cares at all about a problem that happens only with another company's lens.... :)
Correct. Instead of finger-pointing, they should put their brains together and come up first with a cause, second with a cure. At least, that would be the professional and responsible way of tackling the issue...
It would appear that, at least until we see full reviews on the new 12-35mm f2.8 Pana zoom (yum!), the best bet is still the "old" 14-45mm Pana f 3.5-5.6. Better built and having a much better center to corner resolution than the cheaper 14-42mm (non-collapsible) zoom. Of course, the 14-45 still needs to be handled with care regarding OIS; setting it to OFF when shutter speeds are higher than about 1/60 often yiels better (sharper) results than with OIS ON. Compactness and motorized zoom are a poor substitute for picture quality.
Very intriguing techology, but the proof is in the pudding - in this case, the pictures. I have looked at some of the pictures displayed on Lytro's site (http://www.lytro.com/living-pictures#living-pictures/294?&_suid=683) and came to a few preliminary conclusions:1) It IS a cool way to look at pictures, at least for a while.2) The focus-after-the-fact is nice but somewhat limited. For example, it often can't re-focus the background.2) The zoom-after-the-fact is very limited. Any "conventional" digital pictures of 5 Mpixels or more enable better "zoom" capabilities on-screen.3) The amount of chromatic aberrations is quite huge (see the branches in the forest picture referenced above) and overall IQ is only passable.
Probably the whole thing still needs to be tweaked a bit but for some jobs, it might be quite a usefull tool indeed.