Press Release by Olympus Malaysia:
Olympus today announced the release of the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm f3.5-6.3 EZ, a Micro Four-Thirds System standard-compliant zoom lens featuring a motorized zoom mechanism. With this new addition, Olympus can claim to have the widest range of lenses for this new system camera category, to date.
This new lens has a zoom ratio of approximately 4.2X, covering a range that extends from a wide angle of 24mm (35mm camera equivalent) – ideal for taking wide shots even indoors – to a medium telephoto focal length of 100mm (35mm camera equivalent), which is optimal for portraits.
It is the first Olympus interchangeable lens to incorporate a motorized zoom mechanism, especially useful in movie shooting, thanks to the smooth, quiet zooming mode. The AF system is based on the MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) mechanism enhanced by a newly developed linear motor drive that enables faster, quieter focusing.
To ensure the best possible image quality, this sophisticated lens comprises 9 lens groups with 10 elements, including three aspherical elements. Special glass materials are used extensively to correct various aberrations and all lens surfaces are multi-coated to ensure high transmittance and clear imaging performance.
The lens also features a macro mode for close-up shooting with a closest focusing distance of 0.2 meters and maximum image magnification of 0.72X (35mm camera equivalent). In addition, an L-Fn (Lens Function) button allows the user to stop auto-focusing temporarily.
Finally, as befits a lens designed for the highly mobile Micro Four-Thirds System, this new lens employs the proven dust-/splash-proof mechanism originally featured in the ZUIKO DIGITAL SHG and HG (Super High Grade and High Grade) series lenses. The result is a versatile zoom lens usable in the toughest conditions and capable of everything from close-up wide angle shooting to medium range telephoto shooting of both still images and movies.
The new M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm f3.5-6.3 EZ will be available from January 2012 and retail price will be confirmed at a later date.
1. 4.2X (approx.) zoom starting from a wide angle of 24mm (35mm camera equivalent) – ideal for wide shots even indoors.
The M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm f3.5-6.3 EZ is a zoom lens with a zoom ratio of approximately 4.2X, covering a range that extends from a wide angle of 24mm (35mm camera equivalent) – ideal for taking wide shots even indoors – to a medium telephoto focal length of 100mm (35mm camera equivalent), which is optimal for portraits.
To enable a wide 84-degree angle of view to be captured at 24mm wide-angle, this zoom lens uses a DSA (Dual Super Aspherical) element that requires high-precision manufacturing because of the extremely large ratio between the thickness of the lens center and periphery, as well as double-sided aspherical elements located at an intermediate position between the lenses to correct spherical and chromatic aberrations that can accompany ,changes in the zoom ratio.
In addition, an HR (High Refractive index) element and ED (Extra-low Dispersion) element are combined for optimum correction of color aberrations. Thanks to the extensive use of special glass materials, the 9-group, 10-element lens construction of the zoom lens ensures high imaging performance throughout the zooming range. In addition, all lens surfaces are multi-coated to ensure high transmittance and clear imaging performance even under unfavorable conditions such as shooting against light.
The use of an inner zooming system means that there is no variation in overall lens length during zooming, ensuring that stability can be maintained during handheld shooting.
2. Motorized zoom mechanism for stable zooming at a constant rate.
This zoom lens is our first interchangeable lens to use a motorized zoom mechanism. This mechanism enables smooth, quiet, stable zooming at a constant rate, which is especially convenient for movie shooting.
This mechanism drives the zoom lens at one of three selectable speeds and allows the user to control zooming as desired, including slow zooming during movie shooting, detailed composition setting, and quick zooming when required.
Manual zooming is also available, allowing the user to take full control over zooming if desired.
3. MSC mechanism enhanced by linear motor drive for faster, quieter AF control.
Developed independently by Olympus, the MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) mechanism features advanced optical design technology developed for fast, quiet focusing. The new M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-50mm f3.5-6.3 EZ enhances the MSC mechanism by a new linear motor drive. Driving the coil linearly with a direct electromagnetic force without using a gear that would produce noise, the new lens can drive autofocusing with swift start-up and faster, quieter and smoother operation. The smooth autofocusing enables comfortable, stress-free shooting with both movies and still images.
4. Convenient features including macro mode for close-up shooting at 0.72X magnification (35mm camera equivalent) and the L-Fn (Lens Function) button with focus stop function.
The macro mode can be set by pushing the zoom ring forward, while depressing the macro abutton on the side of the lens. In this mode, focusing is possible between 50 and 20 cm for close-up shooting with a maximum image magnification of 0.72X (35mm camera equivalent). Another new feature is the L-Fn (Lens Function) button, which can activate the focus stop function that stops the autofocusing operation temporarily. This makes it possible to avoid unintended focusing on an obstacle that may appear suddenly between the camera and the subject.
5. Dust/splash-proof mechanism.
Already proven with the SHG (Super High Grade)/HG (High Grade) series of ZUIKO DIGITAL lenses, our highly reliable dust/splash-proof mechanism is now incorporated for the first time in a product compliant with the Micro Four Thirds System. This mechanism uses multiple sealing rings fitted in key positions of the lens to prevent water splashes and dust from penetrating the lens.
Update: You can see my pics with the new 12-50mm lens starting from here