Olympus M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8mm Extra Sample Images

This blog entry is not really a review, but I thought many would like some extra sample images to look at. One of the important consideration of using the Olympus M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8 lens would be for stage shooting. Last Saturday, I have brought the Olympus OM-D E-M5 together with the 75mm F1.8 lens to a traditional Chinese Opera show at Panggung Experimen, ASWARA. 

I originally intended to use the Chinese Opera shots as my main review image samples, but I decided against it. I thought the stage lighting would pose a challenge for the camera to handle, but I managed to get away with extremely high shutter speed even at just ISO400 shooting at wide open F1.8. Furthermore, my seating position was a little too far for that "impact" shots, and to properly present these images, I might need to crop away the negative space, which would not show the true characteristics of the lens. Most disappointingly, the Opera show was not as grand and as entertaining as I expected, and I really did not have that much chance to produce many interesting shots. Not having the right opportunity to "torture" the lens and not being able to produce good enough images, I made a separate shooting session at Petaling Street and in sheer luck (sometimes I think there is such thing as Photography God and this was one time he smiled on me) I stumbled upon the Kung Fu showcase, which was a more appropriate testing scenario for the 75mm F1.8 lens. 

I did spend an evening shooting the Chinese Opera, and not using the images somehow felt like the effort was a waste. Hence, I am providing full resolution JPEG files (uncropped, RAW converted to JPEG directly via Olympus Viewer 2 version 1.31, all parameters and settings left at default) for your pixel-peeling pleasure. There are 12 images in there, all opera photos, except one baby portrait headshot as shown further below. 


I realized I have not mentioned anything about Chromatic Aberration, corner softness, distortion or vignetting. I find very little problem with chromatic abberation, with minor purple fringing at very high contrast situations. I did not see any noticable trace of vignetting or distortion. Nonetheless, for such technical analysis of the lens, I am sure there are many other better and more elaborate review sites you can go to, and one of which I like a lot is the 75mm F1.8 lens review done by Pekka Potka (click). Since Pekka Potka has done such a great job, I believe I should just be concentrating on using the 75mm lens to make good images instead ! I admit I am not technically equipped to challenge his results either. 

Before I round up my 75mm F1.8 review work, allow me to draw your attention to the following photograph:

100% crop from previous image

At first I thought: oh dear, out of focus !! As I scrutinized the shot further, the eye was actually in perfect focus, but the depth of field was so narrowly paper thin, that the eye lashes being just a few mm apart from the eye ball were already thrown out of focus !! This image was different from my earlier close up headhots, because the baby's head was very small and I went in very close to fill the frame, hence that dramatically reduced the depth of field when I was shooting at wide open F1.8. Stopping down to F2.8 or F3.5 would have solved this problem. 

I hope you beautiful readers have enjoyed my reviews on the Olympus M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8 lens, as well as those extra images I am providing in this blog entry. Thanks to all of you, my work here has been truly fulfilling. If you purchased the 75mm F1.8 lens, or the OMD, all I ask is for you to share your wonderful images taken with them to the world. Beautiful images are meant to be shared, not hidden. 

Kelvin Ng caught me chimping !!

Weekend is near, and I shall be having my shutter therapy !!


  1. The photo of that small boy is great, and the bokeh is gorgeous, and you discovered what I also saw: even with (µ) Four Thirds, I stop a bit down the closer I come. When using flash in a studio-like setup, it's mostly f=5.6 anyway, and more or less the whole head/shoulders part will be in focus.

    Nice portrait of you as well. The reflections from the table onto your hands/arms are superb, would probably work as well in B&W?

    1. Hey Wolfgang,
      Thanks for the compliments. I agree, I should have stopped down the aperture, but I got a little greedy there so I wanted to see what the F1.8 is truly capable of.

  2. That is some razor thin DOF. Thanks for calling that to our attention. That's something to keep in mind when shooting up close.

  3. Michal Baranski7/05/2012 09:21:00 PM

    The photo of the boy should be shown to anybody complaining about too great DOF in µFT system!
    Great review anyway (as always)!

  4. Thanks for the extra images and thoughts. Instead of using the 75mm as a portrait lens, I can see this becoming a good telephoto option along with the Panasonic 100-300mm. Even though the Oly 75mm is not cheap, it is certainly more affordable than the upcoming Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8 lens will probably be.

    1. Hey Wataru,
      Thanks for the kind compliments, and I agree, the 75mm seems like a good alternative for those who do not like to shoot with long lenses. Yet the 75mm is sharper, and has F1.8 !

  5. WOW WOW,

    Seriously, thanks for these shots. I must say these test photos are better than "official" shots I've seen.
    The Chinese Opera shots and the boy's portrait are stunning examples.
    Normally, I shoot with a 90mm Elmarit on M4/3 and have always been pleased with the DOF,
    I can't wait to finally shoot with an autofocus lens, with similar focal length and light qualities on the OMD.

    Thanks again!

    1. Hey Derek,
      You were bring too kind !! Thanks for the kind words.
      I am sure you will enjoy the 75mm on the OMD. It was as if the lens was made specifically for the OMD.

  6. Hi Robin

    The shot is as excellent as it can and I think I may have to switch to M43... lighter weight and more shooting.

    Thanks for the wonderful pictures

    Francis - Toronto

    1. Hey Francis,
      thanks for the kind words. I am sure switching to micro 4/3 system is a good move. The system has really matured now.

  7. Robin, I though you said you couldn't get close with this lens ? Nice shot BTW!

    Is the child at minimum focus distance ? Or could you have gone closer ?


    1. Hey c.d. embrey,
      I was not close enough, not because of the lens but my position. If only I was possibly 5-8 meters closer to the stage I would deliver better images.
      For the baby boy photo, I was not aware if I was already at the minimum focusing distance, possible I could go in just that bit closer. Sorry that thought did not cross my mind, all I considered was to fit and fill his head in my frame.

    2. Great again, Robin!!

      Love that depth of field on the child photo. This 1.8 looks terrific!!! I

  8. I had a Press pass to the Legendary Concert recently, and i was using the Olympus 45mm with my OM-D. I was about 10 meters away from the stage. If only i had the 75mm! Should have given you a call. But not being too close (or with a lens that is not too long) has it's advantages too, taking contextual shots is pretty nice too http://flic.kr/s/aHsjAkesjJ

    The Holy Trinity for the OM-D is the 12/2 45/1.8 and 75/1.8 With those three lenses, it covers nearly any scenario. You can conquer the world with them.

    1. Wah Aizuddin, you had Press Pass !! No fair haha.
      Nonetheless, you have already got some very impressive photos from the concert !! Well done.

    2. Thanks. Next time we have things going on, i'll see if i can swing you an invite and a pass as well. :)

  9. Many thanks Robin. I was not at all interested in this lens, but as I evolve into more personal projects and less studio shooting, it intrigues me.

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