Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f2.8 Macro scores at DXO Mark: For super-sharp outdoor close-ups and video.

Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f2.8 Macro scores at DXO Mark: For super-sharp outdoor close-ups and video.

The Olympus M.zuiko 60mm macro scored a slight bit better than the Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH OIS lens, while costing less money and offering weather sealing on top of that.

"With strong performance across most of the DxOMark tests and a video-friendly MSC AF motor as well as a weather-resistant design, the Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f2.8 Macro is a good choice for outdoor macro shooting, such as nature portraits or close-up videos.  Compared to its main (and more expensive) competitor, the Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH OIS, it offers better quality for the money, delivering category-leading vignetting performance among Micro Four Thirds prime lenses as well as excellent sharpness.

Besides the Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f2.8 Macro, the only other dedicated macro lens made specifically for a Micro Four Thirds mount  and measured on dxomark.com is the Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH OIS, which has an average street price of around $680 (list price: $899.95).  The 45mm Panasonic Leica lens is equivalent to a 90mm for a 35mm camera and unlike the Olympus macro lens offers optical image stabilization, but does not offer a weather-resistant design.

We put the two macro lenses head to head (both mounted on the Panasonic GH2), to see how they compare and found that despite the price difference, the Olympus M. Zuiko was able to match or outperform the Panasonic-made Leica lens on all the DxOMark lens scores.

The lenses scored equivalently on the overall DxOMark Score, with the Olympus coming in at 17 and the Panasonic at 16, with the 1-point difference being statistically irrelevant.  At 9P-Mpix and 8P-Mpix on the Sharpness score for the Olympus and Panasonic lenses respectively, the measured sharpness of the two lenses is also very close and the difference not very noticeable, but looking at the field map at their maximum aperture of f/2.8 (below), you can discern that resolution of the Olympus lens is slightly sharper in the center of the frame."

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