Olympus M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.2 PRO - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - (Micro-)Four-Thirds

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published October 2019

Introduction

Shallow depth-of-field photography is not at the center of the micro-four-thirds system due to the comparatively small sensor size. However, that doesn't mean that it is beyond its capabilities. The somewhat exotic series of Voigtlander Nokton lenses (all f/0.95) showed that quite a while ago already. However, there are also more mainstream options both from Panasonic/Leica as well as Olympus. In the scope of the review, we'll have a look at the Olympus M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.2 PRO. It also has a couple of in-house cousins of similar speed (17mm f/1.2, 25mm f/1.2). Unlike the faster Voigtlander lenses, the Zuiko features an AF motor which is pretty much a must-have for most users of lenses in this speed class. As the name implies, it is a member of the professional gang of Olympus lenses coming with a correspondingly high price tag of around 1100USD/EUR. 

The build quality of the 45mm f/1.2 PRO is excellent. Professional lenses have to be designed to withstand some abuse - and the 45mm f/1.2 PRO is dust-proof, splash-proof, as well as freeze-proof. It's an all-metal construction that maintains its length during focusing (aka internal focusing). Typical for MFT lenses, manual focusing is very smooth. Olympus also implemented a programmable L-Fn (lens function) button for easily accessible settings adjustment. A plastic, barrel-shaped lens hood is provided.

The AF is very fast, silent and, of course, precise. The Movie & Still-compatible (MSC) autofocus system is also aligned to smooth video recording. The lens features a focus-clutch mechanism for switching between manual and auto-focusing. It is a matter of taste but we are generally not a fan of this approach because you can never keep the focusing when switching between the modes. However, unlike conventional focus-by-wire systems, you do get a focus distance and depth-of-field scale on the lens here.

Specifications
Equiv. focal length (full-format)"90mm" (in terms of field-of-view)
Equiv. aperture (full-format)"f/2.4" (in terms of depth-of-field)
Optical construction14 elements in 10 groups inc. 1x ED, 4x HR & 1x aspherical elements
Number of aperture blades9 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.5m (max. magnification 1:10)
Dimensions70x84.9mm
Weight410g
Filter size62mm
Hoodbarrel-shaped (bayonet mount, supplied)
Other featuresdust, moisture & freeze proof, focus-clutch
MountMicro-Four-Thirds