u4/3rds Olympus interview

Discussion in 'Olympus' started by RichA, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. RichA

    RichA Guest

    From dpreview:

    http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1022&message=28940080

    (Quick translation of interview with Ogawa Haruo, originally published
    in Japanese by DC Watch; the translator takes no responsibility for
    the accuracy of this translation)
    (Original: http://dc.watch.impress.co.jp/cda/dslr/2008/08/11/9015.html)


    Last week, Olympus and Panasonic announced "Micro Four Thirds" as "an
    extension of the Four Thirds Standard." By reducing the flange-back
    distance to 1/2 that of previous standard, and reducing the mount
    diameter by 6mm, it represents a branch out from the Four Thirds
    standard (which is being continued as before), that makes it possible
    to reduce the size of camera and exchangeable lenses.

    We spoke to the head of Olympus Imaging's SLR division, Ogawa Haruo
    (interviewer is Honda Masakazu).
    ā€ The Four Thirds Ideal does not change with Micro Four Thirds

    Before entering the main theme of our interview, Mr. Ogawa said he
    wanted to appeal once more to the strengths of the Four Thirds
    standard. "We've heard rumors that 'this announcement means Olympus is
    going to abandon 4/3.' But we are already scheduling to announce
    multiple 4/3 bodies within this year, and we have absolutely no
    intention of abandoning the 4/3 standard. So here, I first of all want
    people to stop thinking that the announcement of Micro 4/3
    (hereinafter M4/3 ) means that 4/3 fans have been betrayed."

    Mr. Ogawa was originally a technician and spent 20 years occupied in
    research. During his time in the labs, around 1996 research was
    progressing quite nearby regarding the issue of "the optimum SLR
    system for digital cameras."

    "During the film era with manual-focus cameras, we at one time
    abandoned the OM mount and withdrew from the world of SLRs. So we
    thought, if we didn't consider the past, and started out from zero,
    what kind of design would produce the ultimate balance of high image
    quality (equivalent to the 35mm SLR system) and portability? It was in
    response to that question that the 4/3 system was born."

    Ogawa contined with conviction, "At that point back in 1996, we were
    already thinking that lenses needed a minimum MFT of around 200 lines--
    that's about five times the resolution necessary for film lenses,
    which were okay with 50. Naturally, there were also issues about light
    falloff at the edges, degradation of resolution, moire, and false
    color [CA, etc.]. We said, wow, that's a tall order. Conventional
    thinking and common sense won't be enough here. 4/3 was announced in
    September, 2003, but that kind of step-by-step research lay in the
    background to that announcement. In short, 4/3 was our answer to the
    question of what kind of format would be optimum for producing
    sufficient resolution while preserving portability, so we're not about
    to throw that out and redefine another format."

    He added, "I want to say something about the issue of telecentricity.
    It's often said that the reason for seeking telecentricity is because
    'light won't reach the bottom of "deep wells" if it doesn't enter at
    the perpendicular. But in fact, there are a lot of other issues
    involved. Will (the sensor) resolve all the way to the borders? Can
    you aggressively create the images you want? For example, the
    depiction of the deep sky color sometimes called 'Olympus blue.' We
    can achieve that kind of color because we are bring the ideal light to
    the sensor."

    We often hear the knee-jerk response that "image quality is bad
    because the sensor is small," but excellent images cannot be produced
    except by excellent imaging produced by excellent lenses. Lots of
    manufacturers are heading toward 35mm full-frame sensors, but they
    have to be facing considerable issues, such as light falloff at the
    peripheries, MTF degradation, and chromatic aberration.

    "Needless to say, if you produced lenses for full-sized sensors that
    were 4x the size of 4/3 lenses, you could produce the same image
    results with full-sized sensors. And there are opinions to the effect
    that some of the shortcomings of lenses can be made up for by
    electronic means. But at Olympus we didn't want to digitalize the SLR
    by such short-sighted tactics."

    (Quick translation of interview with Ogawa Haruo, originally published
    in Japanese by DC Watch; the translator takes no responsibility for
    the accuracy of this translation)
    (Original: http://dc.watch.impress.co.jp/cda/dslr/2008/08/11/9015.html)


    Last week, Olympus and Panasonic announced "Micro Four Thirds" as "an
    extension of the Four Thirds Standard." By reducing the flange-back
    distance to 1/2 that of previous standard, and reducing the mount
    diameter by 6mm, it represents a branch out from the Four Thirds
    standard (which is being continued as before), that makes it possible
    to reduce the size of camera and exchangeable lenses.

    We spoke to the head of Olympus Imaging's SLR division, Ogawa Haruo
    (interviewer is Honda Masakazu).
    ā€ The Four Thirds Ideal does not change with Micro Four Thirds

    Before entering the main theme of our interview, Mr. Ogawa said he
    wanted to appeal once more to the strengths of the Four Thirds
    standard. "We've heard rumors that 'this announcement means Olympus is
    going to abandon 4/3.' But we are already scheduling to announce
    multiple 4/3 bodies within this year, and we have absolutely no
    intention of abandoning the 4/3 standard. So here, I first of all want
    people to stop thinking that the announcement of Micro 4/3
    (hereinafter M4/3 ) means that 4/3 fans have been betrayed."

    Mr. Ogawa was originally a technician and spent 20 years occupied in
    research. During his time in the labs, around 1996 research was
    progressing quite nearby regarding the issue of "the optimum SLR
    system for digital cameras."

    "During the film era with manual-focus cameras, we at one time
    abandoned the OM mount and withdrew from the world of SLRs. So we
    thought, if we didn't consider the past, and started out from zero,
    what kind of design would produce the ultimate balance of high image
    quality (equivalent to the 35mm SLR system) and portability? It was in
    response to that question that the 4/3 system was born."

    Ogawa contined with conviction, "At that point back in 1996, we were
    already thinking that lenses needed a minimum MFT of around 200 lines--
    that's about five times the resolution necessary for film lenses,
    which were okay with 50. Naturally, there were also issues about light
    falloff at the edges, degradation of resolution, moire, and false
    color [CA, etc.]. We said, wow, that's a tall order. Conventional
    thinking and common sense won't be enough here. 4/3 was announced in
    September, 2003, but that kind of step-by-step research lay in the
    background to that announcement. In short, 4/3 was our answer to the
    question of what kind of format would be optimum for producing
    sufficient resolution while preserving portability, so we're not about
    to throw that out and redefine another format."

    He added, "I want to say something about the issue of telecentricity.
    It's often said that the reason for seeking telecentricity is because
    'light won't reach the bottom of "deep wells" if it doesn't enter at
    the perpendicular. But in fact, there are a lot of other issues
    involved. Will (the sensor) resolve all the way to the borders? Can
    you aggressively create the images you want? For example, the
    depiction of the deep sky color sometimes called 'Olympus blue.' We
    can achieve that kind of color because we are bring the ideal light to
    the sensor."

    We often hear the knee-jerk response that "image quality is bad
    because the sensor is small," but excellent images cannot be produced
    except by excellent imaging produced by excellent lenses. Lots of
    manufacturers are heading toward 35mm full-frame sensors, but they
    have to be facing considerable issues, such as light falloff at the
    peripheries, MTF degradation, and chromatic aberration.

    "Needless to say, if you produced lenses for full-sized sensors that
    were 4x the size of 4/3 lenses, you could produce the same image
    results with full-sized sensors. And there are opinions to the effect
    that some of the shortcomings of lenses can be made up for by
    electronic means. But at Olympus we didn't want to digitalize the SLR
    by such short-sighted tactics."
     
    RichA, Aug 14, 2008
    #1
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