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Exclusive look at Olympus Micro Four Thirds 9-18mm super wide zoom lens

We thought the original Four Thirds 9-18mm was small, but look at this!

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That's the original Four Thirds 9-18 on the left and the new Micro Four Thirds one next to it.

At a press event in London to introduce the new Olympus Pen E-PL1 to UK journalists, we found a tiny pre-production Olympus m.Zuiko 9-18mm f/4-5.6 ultra wide zoom lens and hastily set-up a make-shift product studio to bring you these first independent pictures of the new lens.

As you can see, it's really small; narrower than the 14-42 kit lens, and only slightly longer. It's dwarfed by the Four Thirds version, itself regarded as a very compact lens for its specification. What isn't initially clear is that, like the 14-42, this is another 'collapsing' lens design from Olympus; it must be extended before it can be used. Unlike the kit lens, the front of the lens is non-rotating and it's designed to take a petal-style bayonet-fit lens hood, though my information is that it won't be supplied with the lens as standard.

I'm also told that the autofocus motor has been much improved over the units driving the 14-42 and 17mm pancake m.Zuiko lenses from Olympus, being faster and quieter.

The Olympus m.Zuiko 9-18mm f/4-5.6 will ship quite soon - at the beginning of April, while the other new Micro Four Thirds lens in the pipeline from Olympus, the 14-150mm superzoom, is expected in June.

Have a closer look at the Olympus m.Zuiko 9-18mm f/4-5.6 in our captioned product picture gallery.

Click on a thumbnail image below to see a larger view:



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