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

Sample Images

Click on an image for downloading the full-size variant.

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed200
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/7.1
Exposure1/500s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed200
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/7.1
Exposure1/640s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed200
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/4.0
Exposure1/2500s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed200
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.2
Exposure1/60s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed200
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/2.8
Exposure1/13s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed640
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/2.0
Exposure1/25s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed640
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.2
Exposure1/125s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed320
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.2
Exposure1/100s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/2.0
Exposure1/3200s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/4.0
Exposure1/1250s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/640s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/8.0
Exposure1/320s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.2
Exposure1/8000s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.2
Exposure1/8000s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.6
Exposure1/2000s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed100
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.6
Exposure1/6400s

MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelE-M5MarkII
ISO Speed640
Focal Length45.0mm
Aperture:f/1.2
Exposure1/800s

Competition

As already hinted in the introduction, Olympus isn't alone in this market segment. The front-runner was actually the Voigtlander 42.5mm f/0.95 (to the right below) - and there's no competing lens faster than this one within the MFT system. If you want to push shallow depth-of-field photography to the max, this is the place to be. Its build quality is also fantastic. However, it's an all manual-focus lens without electronic coupling. As such it is probably more interesting for video, less so still-life photography. A more comparable competitor is the Leica Nocticron DG 42.5mm f/1.2 ASPH Power OIS (center below). The Olympus lens is probably somewhat superior to the Leica lens. However, Panasonic users may still consider the Leica lens because it supports dual IS with Panasonic cameras giving it an edge when it comes to low-light photography.

Visual comparison courtesy of camerasize.com.

Verdict

Olympus put all the right ingredients into the Olympus M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.2 PRO for making it one of the best, if not THE best, lens available for Micro-Four-Thirds. It is sharp as a tack at all relevant aperture settings. Lateral CAs are low and image distortions are nothing to worry about. Image auto-correction takes care of vignetting but even without the digital helper, it's quite decent considering its large aperture. Another highlight is the quality of the bokeh which is smooth as silk and as good as it gets in a conventional lens.
While some full-format snobs may frown upon the shallow depth-of-field capabilities, the reality is that for the vast majority of use cases, it's "good enough" really. And if you need something like a 85mm f/1.2 or f/1.4 on a mirrorless full-format camera - with an admittedly superior DoF potential - you also talking about system costs (and size/weight) two or three times as high. Thus it's a very different discussion then anyway.
The build quality of the Zuiko is also excellent thanks to a tightly assembled all-metal and sealed construction. We aren't completely sold on the rather shiny finish but that's a matter of taste. The same goes for the focus-clutch mechanism for switching between AF and MF. However, manual focusing itself is very smooth and precise. The speed of the MSC AF is also impressive. Furthermore, it's also a very lightweight and compact lens - making it a joy to use out there.
All in all the Olympus  M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.2 PRO is one of the best lenses that we reviewed - ever. As such - highly recommended!

Optical Quality:    
★★★★★
Mechanical Quality:
★★★★★
Price/Performance:
★★★★★

What does this mean ?