Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

Started May 30, 2018 | Discussions
Peter Kovesi New Member • Posts: 4
Olympus TG-5 lens defect?
1

Get your TG-5, drive it to full zoom, and aim the camera at a dark background. Move the camera around a bit and perhaps try some alternate viewing directions. Without too much difficulty you should see a light purple spot in the middle of your image. This is not lens flare, you get this artifact on overcast days and even with the sun behind you. Indeed, I find it most noticeable on overcast days.

I have encountered this on 3 cameras, my original camera, the replacement camera that Olympus sent me after I complained, and on a display camera in a shop.

As far as I can tell up to about 2x zoom the image seems OK but much beyond this you are likely to end up with an unusable  image.

I have only seen one other reference to this problem

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4193624

Does anyone else have this problem with their TG-5?

Here are two example images from two different cameras

Olympus TG-5
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CheapCameraFan Regular Member • Posts: 136
Lens flare ... a common issue for TG-5

It's caused by lens flare, and can be worked around in the same way you'd deal with any lens flare. I've found references to it happening with the TG-4 as well.

I've seen it before (even at night) and worked around it.  Others claimed that it's the folded lens that makes the TG-4/TG-5 susceptible to this type of flare, but I'm just taking their word on that.

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OP Peter Kovesi New Member • Posts: 4
Re: Lens flare ... a common issue for TG-5

Thank you for the link to the same problem on the TG-4, I should have thought to look there.

I think it is more than just 'ordinary' lens flare. The defect is being observed on overcast days, or when the sun behind the camera and, in one case, even underwater!

Given that the defect is reported quite extensively on the DPReview forums I am very troubled that none of the reviews of the TG-5 in DPReview mention or investigate this defect.  If I had known about it I would never have bought the camera.

Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Lens flare ... a common issue for TG-5

That seems very strange. I've not had that issue with my TG5. I did order a CPL to cure a bit of purple fringing in strong direct sun, but I've not had any lens flair at all.

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Allen in Bethesda, MD Contributing Member • Posts: 532
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

During a recent cruise I took a number of photos with my new TG-5.  My photos did not have this sort of problem.  The fact that the spot is even and consistent in size leads me to believe that it is not lens flair.  That usually shows up in different portions of the picture and varies in size.  Have you looked at the surface of the lens to see if there is something on it?  How about the lens coating?  Do you notice anything odd in it?

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embie
embie Senior Member • Posts: 1,228
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

Allen in Bethesda, MD wrote:

During a recent cruise I took a number of photos with my new TG-5. My photos did not have this sort of problem. The fact that the spot is even and consistent in size leads me to believe that it is not lens flair. That usually shows up in different portions of the picture and varies in size. Have you looked at the surface of the lens to see if there is something on it? How about the lens coating? Do you notice anything odd in it?

Hi,

My lens is spotless clean and the coating looks fine, still I also have that purple spot in SOME of my photos, it seems to be a common problem with the TG-5, I think it has to do with the lens systems that stays inside and the position of the sun (angle of the light) when taking the picture.

To the OP : Rest assure, except this phenomenon (which is still a major !) there is nothing wrong with your specific camera, you just has to live with it.

eMBie

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Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

If it were a design flaw, all the TG's would have it all the time. No one would be buying them and there would be a major recall. This is not the case.

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OP Peter Kovesi New Member • Posts: 4
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

Yes, I agree that the consistency of the spot does suggest something other than flare.

I did get my camera inspected by the local authorised Olympus repair agent.  The technician assured me that this was a normal 'feature' of the camera.  Not believing him I took the issue up with Olympus directly and they eventually sent me a replacement camera.  The replacement camera exhibited the fault straight out of the box.  To be really sure it was a feature of the camera design I went to a camera shop and was able to demonstrate the problem on the shop's display camera (much to the amazement of the store manager).   Sadly it would seem that the camera technician was right.

To reiterate: a reliable way to reproduce this artifact is to use full zoom and point the camera at a dark background.  Also, I think an environment where the lighting is diffuse, such as on a cloudy day, makes the problem more apparent.

Interestingly my still operational TG-1 does not have this problem

embie
embie Senior Member • Posts: 1,228
Re: Lens flare ... a common issue for TG-5
1

Linnin wrote:

That seems very strange. I've not had that issue with my TG5. I did order a CPL to cure a bit of purple fringing in strong direct sun, but I've not had any lens flair at all.

LOL, looking at your thread you have exact the same problem.

Circular purple spot on bottom bass-box and stool.

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/61208015

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Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Lens flare ... a common issue for TG-5

embie wrote:

Linnin wrote:

That seems very strange. I've not had that issue with my TG5. I did order a CPL to cure a bit of purple fringing in strong direct sun, but I've not had any lens flair at all.

LOL, looking at your thread you have exact the same problem.

Circular purple spot on bottom bass-box and stool.

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/61208015

You are hallucinating!

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Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Lens flare ... a common issue for TG-5

Full Zoom A f4.9 ISO 1600 well diffused K5000 ceiling light

No post processing other than straighten & crop

You can see it very faintly

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PentaxNick Senior Member • Posts: 1,590
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

This is due to the design of the lens and only occurs at particular focal length and lighting conditions. I think it’s at full zoom (18mm) with bright but flat light. Occurs at most focus distances.

Just a characteristic to be aware of. If it occurs change position or zoom back a bit and it goes away.

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Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?
2

Just wondered if a circular polarizer would help, and it does! Here they are straight out of the camera with some cropping only.

Scenery Mode. Full Zoom. Cropping only.

Scenery Mode. Full Zoom with CIR-PL. Cropping only.

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CheapCameraFan Regular Member • Posts: 136
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?
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That was a good test, and quite a noticeable result.

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Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

So what next? Class action lawsuit against Olympus?

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PentaxNick Senior Member • Posts: 1,590
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?
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Linnin wrote:

So what next? Class action lawsuit against Olympus?

I doubt if they promised a lens would be free from flare. The nature of the flare on this lens is a bit different to normal lenses probably due to the folded design, but that’s all it is.

Litigation isn’t the answer to everything.

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Linnin
Linnin Regular Member • Posts: 206
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

PentaxNick wrote:

Linnin wrote:

So what next? Class action lawsuit against Olympus?

I doubt if they promised a lens would be free from flare. The nature of the flare on this lens is a bit different to normal lenses probably due to the folded design, but that’s all it is.

Litigation isn’t the answer to everything.

That's not lens flare, but it is a flawed design.

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PentaxNick Senior Member • Posts: 1,590
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

Linnin wrote:

PentaxNick wrote:

Linnin wrote:

So what next? Class action lawsuit against Olympus?

I doubt if they promised a lens would be free from flare. The nature of the flare on this lens is a bit different to normal lenses probably due to the folded design, but that’s all it is.

Litigation isn’t the answer to everything.

That's not lens flare, but it is a flawed design.

Certainly is lens flare. Occurs when there’s a bright light source to one side, even if out of frame, and reduces or disappears when the lens front is shaded.

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OP Peter Kovesi New Member • Posts: 4
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?

I agree that in most cases this kind of artifact is lens flare.  However, in this case I am convinced it is something different.

Here's the artifact in my shadow...

peterak Regular Member • Posts: 133
Re: Olympus TG-5 lens defect?
1

Linnin wrote:

Just wondered if a circular polarizer would help, and it does! Here they are straight out of the camera with some cropping only.

Scenery Mode. Full Zoom. Cropping only.

Scenery Mode. Full Zoom with CIR-PL. Cropping only.

This is very useful!  Thanks for posting.

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Peter

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