Wednesday, February 9, 2011


CENTER VALLEY, Pa., February 8, 2011 – Olympus, acclaimed worldwide for its precision technology advancements, marks the 75th anniversary of Zuiko brand lenses during the Camera and Photo Imaging Show (CP+) in Yokohama, Japan, February 9-12.

With the introduction of the world’s first Zuiko lens in the “Semi-Olympus I” camera in 1936, the high-quality Zuiko brand was born. At CP+, its successor camera “Semi-Olympus II” (introduced in 1938), will be displayed to commemorate this historic milestone.

To mark Olympus’ dedication to the development of state-of-the-art, high-performance products, the mock-up of a new M.ZUIKO single focal lens concept will also be presented at the show. It is a high-end MICRO Four Thirds™ lens currently being developed for launch later this year.

Throughout history, Olympus has led in cutting-edge design and outstanding optical performance, making the Zuiko line more compact and powerful, with lens availability for advanced and amateur-level camera aficionados alike.

Olympus continues to be an innovator, developing new technologies to expand the frontiers of digital photography and leading where others have followed. Proof that Olympus enables consumers to capture it all.


It was in 1936 that the Takachiho Corporation, forerunner of today's Olympus Optical Co., Ltd., introduced its first camera, the Semi-Olympus I. The camera's lens was given the name Zuiko, a Japanese word that means "light of the gods." It was an auspicious name, chosen partially because the lens had been developed at the Mizuho Optical Research Laboratory and partially because the corporate name, Takachiho, is a Japanese word that means "mountain of the gods." But more than the name, it was the quality of the lens that sparked conversation at the time. Ever since, Zuiko lenses have been featured on succeeding generations of Olympus cameras. The Zuiko lenses are widely acclaimed for their remarkable imaging power, and have become one of the world's most respected high-performance lens brands.

Semi-Olympus I (1936)

Launched in 1936, the Semi-Olympus I was the first Olympus camera fitted with the newly developed Zuiko lens, which was mounted on a Semi-Proud body supplied by Proud.

Semi-Olympus II (1938)

In 1938, Olympus developed its own camera body, in addition to its own lens and shutter mechanism. The launch of the first Olympus-developed camera, the Semi-Olympus II was an important milestone. The side-opening design of the pressed sheet-metal body was unusual for a medium-format camera. It also featured a reverse Galileo tubular viewfinder.

Tatsuno Quality

Olympus’ Tatsuno Plant is the birthplace of many famous Zuiko lenses, including the OM-series lenses, which received worldwide accolades for their superb imaging performance. At Tatsuno, the skill of the craftspeople that produce a variety of legendary lenses is passed down from generation to generation. Tatsuno-made lenses have long impressed professionals worldwide with their high-performance imaging.

M.ZUIKO Digital Lenses

M.Zuiko lenses are designed exclusively for the MICRO Four Thirds System. The size and weight of these lenses is drastically reduced. Recent M.Zuiko lenses are equipped with Movie and Still Compatibility (MSC) function, which enables quick, smooth and silent auto focusing during movie recording. Seven different MSC lenses are currently offered from super-wide angle to super-telephoto.