Why no lens uniformity?

Started Feb 16, 2014 | Discussions thread
zuikowesty Veteran Member • Posts: 3,859
Re: Lens classes are as follow

DonSC wrote:

You can find the same categories on the USA Olympus website but it's not on the landing page for lenses. I'm not sure why they bury the categorization since it makes things easier to understand IMO. http://www.getolympus.com/us/en/lens_chip_layer You can even find a roadmap for both 43 and m.43 lenses by catetory. http://cache.olympusamerica.com/static/getolympus/files/lens_roadmap.pdf

The strategy looks good actually. With an exception or two, you have consumer zooms at the bottom, fast primes without sealing at the next level, and then fast zooms (not as fast as the primes) with sealing at the next level.

As was suggested, I think the answer about why some of the primes have more features is price. This is one of those damned if you do and damned if you don't situations. Some want the lenses cheaper. Some more feature rich. Personally I'd rather the primes be cheaper rather than feature rich because I can fill in the features with the Pro lenses. No doubt many others would have a different take.

But you posed an interesting question.

Thanks also for the roadmap link. I had not seen this updated version, although I knew most of the data presented.

One lens that stands out is the 17/2.8. It is one of the oldest, with the poorest reputation, and is still used as a kit lens. So why has it not been upgraded like the 14-42 kit lens? Surely improving the performance of a prime with moderate design goals should not be a huge task. For every "inferior" lens (compared to the competition and their own standards) Olympus sells, the more their reputation as a company known for excellent optics is questioned. For every customer who opts for a Panasonic 14 or 20 instead of the 17, Olympus stands to lose that customer on the next body or lens purchase. I put the 12-50 in the same boat, but it has some really nice features, so I hope a II version comes along.

The 17/1.8 is not a replacement - it's in a different category/price range, and it's not a pancake.

I should mention that I just bought a 17/2.8 and am waiting for it to arrive. This may seem crazy, but I want an affordable pancake, the 14/2.5 is too wide, and the 20/1.7 is too pricey, so I decided to try it, hoping to be surprised. The 20 is more than 2x the cost of either the 17 or 14 new or used on eBay. If the 17/2.8 isn't good enough, then I can try the 12-32 or the 14-42EZ.

Enough said on the 17/2.8 - I will wait to try it for myself...

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