Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm f/4.0-5.6 Lens Review


Hall of Famer
Jul 3, 2010
Are you sure? I was not aware of that. I knew that this was the case for in-camera JPEGs but wasn't aware that it happened with RAW files sent to Lightroom. I'll have to look at these files in Raw Developer to see how they look there where I can be pretty sure no automatic color fringing correction is being applied.

There is one problem with this statement, if you compare this with the 7-14mm: AFAIK, Lightroom corrects the chromatic aberration of Panasonic lenses but not that of Olympus lenses. Since you do not take this into account, your otherwise very fine review may be misleading in this respect, since it suggests an advantage which might not be there or at least not as big.


Jul 14, 2010
Are you sure? I was not aware of that.
It does distortion correction, too, and I have read that it also corrects chromatic aberration. I don't own any lens by Panasonic, but since you have provided the raw files, I can and will examine this further with a raw developer which does not apply any automatic corrections and post the result here. But you have to wait till the evening.


Jul 14, 2010
Richard Butler said:
What's being corrected?

From our testing, we've seen different manufacturers take different approaches and to different degrees. Panasonic's Micro Four Thirds lenses contain information about both geometric distortion and chromatic aberration (color fringing), Olympus's only contain geometric distortion information. Panasonic's camera bodies correct whatever they receive information about from the lens, and also pass that information on to their RAW files, while Olympus' only correct and retain distortion data. Samsung tells us its NX series doesn't yet do any correction but has the capability to do so if needed in future lenses.
Source: Distortion Article: 1. Page 1: Digital Photography Review


Hall of Famer
Jul 3, 2010
Pictor, I know that Lightroom corrects distortion and does so for both lenses but wasn't aware that it corrected CA automatically for any lenses. The DPR article above doesn't explicitly say what Lightroom does, only that the information is sent to the RAW processing app for Panasonic lenses with Panasonic bodies.

I just processed both 9mm f/4 files in Raw Developer, which doesn't apply any corrections. I pushed the exposure a bit during file development to brighten both by the same amount. Here is a crop from an area where CA is worst:

It seems that you were right about Lightroom correcting the Panasonic CA, as there is now some color fringing evident in the Panasonic crop from Raw Developer. However, the Oly CA remains significantly worse, so I wouldn't change any conclusions.

Here are the full-res files as converted by Raw Developer:
Panasonic: https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4101/4859346717_e8511d9386_o.jpg
Olympus: https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4143/4859345763_874cb0c54a_o.jpg
Nov 12, 2010
Excellent review!
I have purchased 7-14 when it first went out as i needed WA back then, and didnt hade a choice
Today i might been very tempted by the 9-18 because of the sheer size and price!
Very happy with 7-14 at 7mm its one of the sharpest lens i ever owned!
(coupled with GH1)

Looking forward for more reviews, would like to see 14-140 vs 14-150 review if possible, thanx!
(EDIT)-Just found the 14-150 vs 14-140 review posted! i like this site more and more :)
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7-14 vs 9-18

Thanks for the excellent review.
Am building a Micro 4/3 system and shoot superwide - ultra wide most of the time.
Am going to stick with Lumix lenses due to your analysis, even though I prefer the size of the Zuiko.
Need the acuity and correction.

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