Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional Assessment

Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional Assessment

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is a wide-angle zoom lens constructed for the Micro 4 Thirds format. With a formidable 16-50mm full-frame equal focal size, the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens covers most panorama images wants. It even acts as a nifty fifty when zoomed in, giving it an unusually wide selection for on a regular basis images. With a most aperture of simply f/4, it’s not the quickest lens in my bag, although. Do the professionals outweigh the cons? I’ll reply that query in at the moment’s evaluation of the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional.

Close focus wide angle photography with the Olympus 8-25mm f4 Pro lens and a santa cruz island gophersnake
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 11mm, ISO 80, 1/200, f/10.0

Choosing a Lens for Micro 4 Thirds

At any time when I take into account a brand new lens for the Micro 4 Thirds system, I all the time pay additional shut consideration to those three facets of a lens:

  • Is the focal size helpful?
  • Is it quick?
  • Is it compact?

These concerns are linked to the 2x crop issue of the Micro 4 Thirds Format, which successfully doubles the focal size and f/cease in full body equivalence phrases. The results of the smaller sensor dimension (normally) is that extra attain is achievable with smaller lenses, at the price of a rise in noise.

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens has an equal focal size of 16-50mm, which may be very versatile with an extended zoom vary. At f/4, which behaves equally to f/8 on a full body, the lens shouldn’t be significantly quick. (I’ll get extra into the low mild skills limitations of the lens additional down.) Lastly, the lens shouldn’t be essentially the most compact Micro 4 Thirds lens I’ve shot with, nevertheless it’s nonetheless not huge, weighing 411 grams (0.91 kilos).

Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens and the Panasonic lumix g9 mirrorless camera

Dealing with and construct

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is a sturdily constructed, weatherproof zoom lens that options easy focus and zoom rings, plus a customizable perform button. When not in use, the lens will be retracted to suit extra conveniently in a digicam bag. To place the lens out and in of the storing place, merely rotate the zoom ring previous the 8mm mark. There is no such thing as a locking mechanism – you simply must push previous the resistance on the 8mm mark.

The main target ring is easy and works as anticipated. Akin to different Olympus Professional lenses, the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional incorporates a guide focus clutch which toggles the lens between guide and autofocus by pushing the ring ahead. I’m not a fan of this design as a result of it may be straightforward to by accident slide it out of the autofocus place, which has been a hindrance. That stated, as a (principally) landscape-oriented lens, this wasn’t too evident of a difficulty.

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is climate sealed, tolerant of splashing and dirt. Though I haven’t put it by as many trials as a few of my different lenses, it feels sturdy and conjures up confidence whereas capturing. That is even supposing it’s an externally zooming lens.

When prolonged, the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens reaches 4.5 inches lengthy (11.4 cm). In comparison with different wide-angle lenses for this method, it’s actually on the massive aspect. Taking pictures with the bigger lens felt clunky at occasions, particularly when capturing one-handed or when stability is vital in some other awkward place. But it surely’s nonetheless smaller than a majority of wide-angle zooms for bigger sensor sizes.

Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens


So what if the lens is a bit massive – does it make up for it in efficiency? In my view, overwhelmingly sure.

1. Sharpness

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is a really sharp lens. Pixel peepers like myself can relaxation assured that the lens is greater than adequately sharp, even nook to nook at f/4. The one time sharpness takes a slight hit is when at f/4 and at shut focus. In any other case, the lens excelled in sharpness.

Just a few crops of the beneath picture present how tack sharp the lens is:

the Olympus 8-25mm Pro sharpness performance
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm f/4 at 14mm

Heart crop:

the Olympus 8-25mm Pro sharpness performance center crop
100% crop of the unique picture

Nook crop:

the Olympus 8-25mm Pro sharpness performance corner crop
100% crop of the unique picture

A gentle sharpness enchancment is noticeable stopping down from f/4 to f/5.6 within the corners. For shut focus, I used to be capturing fortunately at f/7.1. Nonetheless, I all the time felt like I may take full benefit of the f/4 aperture if I wanted it.

2. Bokeh

As an f/4 lens, it comes as no shock that the bokeh efficiency is nothing to write down dwelling about. I wouldn’t plan on utilizing this lens for any kind of images that counts on creamy bokeh. Even when focusing shut, background particulars are stored principally in-focus.

Low bokeh performance with the Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 8mm, ISO 200, 1/2000, f/4.0

3. Chromatic Aberration

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens minimizes chromatic aberration. Upon extraordinarily shut inspection, some is noticeable however it’s negligible and simple to right. General the lens does an unbelievable job sustaining true colours.

4. Shade Constancy

One of many facets that stood out to me essentially the most concerning the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is how properly it retained the pure colours of a scene, even when capturing in unfavorable lighting situations.

The lens has little to no flare when capturing towards the sunshine. That is maybe attributed to the Zuiko Further-low Reflective Optical coating utilized. It does wonders as a result of I may shoot scenes into the solar they usually had been captured simply as they seem with the human eye. This isn’t one thing I can say about my different favourite huge angle lens I take advantage of for shut focus and astrophotography, the Panasonic Leica 9mm f/1.7.

The Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens has excellent color fidelity and limits glare for excellent sharpness and clarity
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 14mm, ISO 250, 1/100, f/11.0

5. Distortion

I noticed little to no distortion when capturing with the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens. At 8mm, some horizon strains turned ever so barely curved at 8mm, although nothing uncorrectable.

mild distortion on the horizon with the Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 8mm, ISO 80, 1/2, f/18.0

Discipline Use and Versatility

The strengths of this lens is available in its versatility. It excels as a 50mm equal lens for pure compositions, and in addition as an extremely wide-angle lens. Moreover, it focuses shut, yielding a 0.21x magnification ratio. Should you’ve been watching my images, you know the way necessary shut focus is to me!

1. Panorama Images

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is a superb alternative for panorama images, it’s impeccably sharp, minimizes any distortion, maintains pure colours even with powerful lighting situations, and covers very helpful focal lengths.

The one factor it lacks for landscapes is a quick aperture for astrophotography.

High color accuracy with the Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens with wildflowers
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 9mm, ISO 200, 1/1250, f/7.1

2. Shut Focus Images

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens has a minimal focusing distance of 9.1 inches (23 centimeters), yielding a most magnification of 0.21x. Whether or not at 8mm, 25mm, or one thing in between, the lens does an excellent job at enlarging small topics.

I personally get pleasure from wider-than-usual focal lengths for close-ups of small animals as a result of the attitude is extra intimate than you’ll get with a extra typical macro lens.

I like to recommend stopping down a bit at shut focus to keep away from some softness within the corners. I had the perfect luck with f/7.1. Even so, close-up pictures are on par with my sharpness requirements.

macro photography with the Olympus 8-25mm f4 Pro lens and a sidewinder rattlesnake
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 25mm, ISO 250, 1/250, f/13.0

3. Low Mild Images

The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens isn’t meant to be hand-held in low mild. I wouldn’t select the lens for transferring topics or in my case, photographing a sea cave from a transferring boat. I undoubtedly want I had my Panasonic 9mm f/1.7 with me this event! That being stated, the in-body picture stabilization of recent Olympus cameras helps you to get away with quite a bit! I’ll be aware that the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens doesn’t have its personal picture stabilization.

Lowlight performance with the Olympus 8-25mm Pro lens in a sea cave
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 15mm, ISO 1000, 1/8, f/4.0

Comparable Lenses

In relation to an extended zoom vary for a wide-angle lens, the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is certainly one of a form. No different zoom by Panasonic or Olympus covers that vary utterly.

Closest is maybe the Panasonic Leica 8-18mm f/2.8. This lens does have a substantial benefit with the a lot sooner aperture. Nevertheless, it doesn’t attain that 25mm focal size for the nifty-fifty look (it’s equal to a 16-36mm full-frame lens somewhat than a 16-50mm). The Panasonic lens additionally has a a lot worse most magnification of 0.12x in comparison with 0.21x. So, it’s sooner if you wish to work in low mild, nevertheless it’s much less versatile in different methods.

Olympus additionally presents some zooms that aren’t as ultra-wide, however prolong additional within the higher focal size vary. The Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, Olympus 12-45mm f/4 PRO, and Olympus 12-100mm f/4 IS PRO lenses all prolong previous the 8-25mm on the telephoto finish, they usually’re all of commendable optical high quality.

A last contender is the ever-intriguing Panasonic Leica 10-25mm f/1.7. In comparison with the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens, the Panasonic presents an enormous achieve in mild, whereas giving up slightly little bit of focal size on the huge finish. This lens can be heavier and dearer.

In fact, there are various sooner primes on the market, too. However what’s so engaging concerning the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is that very versatile zoom vary! Going from ultra-wide to nifty fifty is admittedly helpful. No different lens matches it for an interchangeable lens system, not even APS-C or full-frame lenses.

Close focus wide angle photography with the Olympus 8-25mm f4 Pro lens and a california mountain kingsnake
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 9mm, ISO 400, 1/80, f/7.1


It’s arduous to provide you with many weaknesses of the Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens as a result of the optics are prime tier. It’s a just about excellent 8-25mm f/4 lens. I actually want it had been sooner in order that I may put it to use for astrophotography and different low-light conditions, however that was all the time going to be the case for an f/4 Micro 4 Thirds lens.

I ought to point out that it’s a clunkier lens than what I’m used to with Micro 4 Thirds. At 411 grams (0.91 kilos), the lens weighs virtually as a lot as my digicam physique. It’s additionally on the massive aspect, even when retracted, taking over appreciable area in my digicam bag.

Lastly, the value is on the upper aspect at $1100 (although typically on sale for as little as $800, making it a extra engaging possibility). Contemplating the wide selection of lens selections for Micro 4 Thirds, there could also be higher choices for those who’re on a finances.

Close focus wide angle photography with the Olympus 8-25mm f4 Pro lens and a sidewinder rattlesnake in low light
OM-1 + OLYMPUS M.8-25mm F4 @ 8mm, ISO 500, 10 seconds, f/4.0

Shopping for Issues

Causes to purchase

  • Glorious picture readability, sharpness and coloration renditioning
  • Zoom vary covers most panorama images wants
  • Focus shut for max magnification of 0.21X

Causes to not purchase

  • Most aperture of f/4 not appropriate for low mild or astrophotography
  • Not essentially the most compact lens
  • On the costly aspect when not on sale


Sure the lens may very well be sooner, and I want it had been slightly smaller, however the glass is extraordinarily prime quality and delivers properly. The flexibility of the 8-25mm focal size and close-focusing 0.21x magnification skills are to not be underestimated. In brief, this is without doubt one of the most versatile lenses accessible, but you don’t pay an excessive amount of of a penalty for it in different methods.

I loved utilizing the lens for each panorama and wide-angle wildlife images. The Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional lens is a superb walk-around lens that can be utilized for the best composition in virtually any setting.

Should you’re planning to buy this lens, you may help our lens testing efforts by shopping for it by our affiliate hyperlinks beneath. The lens prices $1100, nevertheless it typically goes on sale for $800.

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Let me know within the feedback part beneath if in case you have any questions or feedback about this lens.

Olympus 8-25mm f/4 Professional
  • Measurement and Weight
  • Construct High quality and Dealing with
  • Sharpness Efficiency
  • Different Picture High quality
  • Worth

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