A versatile gem in search of a lens hood
April 04, 2014
I'd actually give this lens 4.5 stars. At $499.00 for a relatively fast (f2.8) lens with true macro (1:1), the Olympus 60mm is a gem.
It fits nicely on the Olympus Pen/Panasonic GX rangefinder type bodies as well as the OM and GH miniature DSLR bodies. It protrudes just an inch or so more than a kit lens with a small diameter, hardly adding any weight to the camera. It is plastic, but feels solid and its mount is metal.
Tuck it into a pocket and it’s with you at all times, which is good because the lens is versatile: its 60mm (120mm in 35mmspeak) means it is good for portraits as well for medium telephoto shots.
On its side is a round, button-type control allowing the user to set the lens to one of four distance zones, from macro to infinity, thereby reducing the lens’ travel and helping it to achieve focus quickly. But you do have to remember to set it for the type of shooting you’re doing. A convenient window atop the lens’ barrel gives direct readout and confirmation. The lens will hunt a bit if the subject is monotone or flat, but give it an edge or texture and the Oly grabs focus quickly.
Most important is image quality, which is excellent: free of distortion, sharp and detailed with good colour and contrast, the images will make excellent enlargements.
What’s to complain? I tend to fumble a little grasping the round button control; though I wouldn’t want it sticking out too much above the barrel I'd like to be able to grab it more easily.
And typically for Olympus lenses, the 60mm macro doesn’t come with a pouch or case which is okay, but what isn’t okay is that it doesn’t come with hood. That additional piece of plastic adds $52.00 to the price – 10% of the cost of the lens.
That aside, the lens is an excellent buy for your camera kit.
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