The Olympus Zuiko Digital 17.5-45mm f/3.5-5.6 is a standard zoom lens for digital 4/3 format cameras. This lens belongs to the so-called still-not-SLR-but-already-not-a-point-and-shoot-camera lens class.
The optical scheme employs a non-aging Ernostar lens design with an aspherical element as a meniscus.
The lens is simple and inexpensive, and at the same time this is a rather sharp kit zoom Olympus E420 and E520 cameras came complete with.
The lens body and the bayonet are made of flimsy plastic.
Real lens speed is much lower than claimed. When compared to a prime lens at the same aperture (f/5.6), the zuiko-KIT is 2 stops darker at 45 mm.
Hence ensuing consequences: focusing in the dusk is very difficult (without a good flash); The pictures taken indoors with a kit flash are somewhat dark. Shooting dynamic subjects is possible in the bright sun only, otherwise you will have nothing but blurring. There are AF errors even in normal lighting conditions. At the same time the lens can cope with a 10-second night city landscape. When shooting at 45 mm with minimum focusing distance, the lens produces a beautiful bokeh, no worse than that of a Zuiko macro lens (five times as expensive).
Pincushion distortion is visible at 17.5 mm.
Autofocus is not very fast, and its motor is moderately noisy.
The lens features a handy broad textured focus ring.
Posted by: vitaliian Date of publication: 29.03.2013