RogerBW's Blog

Fisheye lens 28 September 2017

Another bit of kit I borrowed recently: an Olympus BCL-0980 fisheye lens.

This is a very crude beast, fixed f/8 and three focus settings. It's a 9mm lens; one can get down to about 7.5mm in the micro four-thirds format, by paying more than twice as much. (For 35mm cameras it's possible to get about 3.5mm without too much trouble, and given focal length conversions that's around a fifth the effective length of this one. So if you're being serious about fisheye that's probably the way to go.)

Initial test shot of the magnolia.

Here is a standard reference gazebo, with the camera braced against the support pillar that you can't see.

The gazebo roof and lighting system, mid-range focus.

The barbecue from close up.

Great fun, and when money allows…

[Buy this at Amazon] and help support the blog.


  1. Posted by Owen Smith at 03:38pm on 28 September 2017

    It's my fisheye lens. You obviously enjoyed it more than I did, it sits on the shelf unused most of the time. I have a rectilinear Olympus 9-18mm zoom lens (a hell of a lot more expensive than this toy fisheye) so I can get just as much in (not as much at the corners mind you) and it doesn't come out all distorted. The fisheye effect is a difficult one to appreciate. The 9-18mm by contrast is in my travel photography bag, having seen what photos are possible with a super wide angle lens I don't think I'd ever be without one.

  2. Posted by RogerBW at 04:23pm on 28 September 2017

    The impression I got is that it's well-made if simple, but it basically does one thing that I don't currently want to do very often. I might pick one up some time for fun, but not for the £90 it's going for on Amazon, and the ones on eBay cost more; I'd rather lay out more money for a more capable piece of kit, like that 9-18.

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