OM System OM-1 and 150-400mm f/4.5
Olympus / OM System,  Photo Gear

OM System 150-400mm Unboxing and First Impressions

It’s taken a long time, but I finally received my OM System 150-400mm f/4.5 Pro Lens with a built in 1.2x teleconverter from OM Digital Solutions.  In this blog, I’ll discuss the time it took to receive the lens, the shipping and packing, the unboxing, and my impressions of the lens after my first outing.

So how long did it take to get the OM System M.Zuiko 150-400mm lens?

It took a total of 249 days (just over 8 months) to receive the lens from the time I reserved it.

Timeline to Receive the M.Zuiko 150-400mm lens

 Key DatesDuration from Last DateCumulative Duration
Date ReservedNov 30, 2022  
Date OrderedJul 31, 2023243 Days243 days
Date ShippedAug 4, 20234 Days247 days
Date ReceivedAug 5, 20231 Day248 days

As you can see, the process moved quickly once I was able to order the lens.  The lens was shipped from OM Systems’ new USA third party logistics partner, Choice Logistics.  Choice Logistics shipped my lens using UPS Ground from Wayne, Pennsylvania which is only a 1 day drive from my location.

I’m not sure how the order process is supposed to work.  On July 31, 2023, I emailed OM System Customer Service inquiring about my position on the list and when I could expect the lens since it had been over 8 months since I reserved the lens.  The manager of eCommerce responded asking if I’d like to order one today.  I’m not sure if they missed me on the list or my lens had just happened to come in, but I’m happy that I sent the email and received my new lens.

OM System 150-400mm f/4 Packaging
OM System 150-400mm f/4 Packaging

What’s in the Box?

The lens was packaged in OM Systems new plain cardboard box packaging.  Also included in the box with the lens was: a lens strap, lens hood, lens cap, a big pouch to store the lens, warranty card, and manual.

The Olympus logo is now gone, with only the OM System and M.ZUIKO logos on the lens.

OM System 150-400mm and Storage Pouch
OM System 150-400mm and Storage Pouch

First Impressions of the OM System 150-400mm f/4.5 lens

  • Although the 150-400 is quite a bit bigger than my other Olympus / OM System lenses, it didn’t feel overly heavy to hold or carry.    I took it on a 2 hour photo walk for my first outing with the lens, and I didn’t find it difficult to carry or shoot for 2 hours.  I had the lens and OM-1 attached to my Black Rapid strap and easily carried it for a 2 hour photo hike.  The lens can also be easily carried using the tripod mount.
  • The lens felt balanced mounted with the OM-1, and can easily be shot handheld with the left hand holding the lens from underneath.  I’m Still figuring out where I want to place the tripod mount when shooting.  Right now, I have it set at around 4 o’clock looking from the back of the camera.  This seems to be out of the way of most of the switches and settings.
Bunny - 220mm (440 with Crop Factor), ISO 1600, f/8
Bunny – 220mm (440mm with Crop Factor), ISO 1600, f/8
  • After mainly shooting with the 300mm f/4 for birds and wildlife, I have to say, I love having zoom on a long telephoto lens.  There was a bunny along the trail during my hike and it was very convenient to switch off the internal teleconverter and zoom out to get the shot instead of backing up along the trail and zooming out with my feet.
  • The 1.25x teleconverter is also very convenient when you need a little extra reach.  You can get a focal length range of 300 – 1000mm (including the 2X crop of the Micro Four Thirds sensor) without adding an external teleconverter.
  • I also tried shooting with the Olympus 1.4x Teleconverter + the 1.25x built in teleconverter for a focal length of 1,400mm.  I was able to photograph at this focal length handheld and got some sharp shots.  The widest aperture using the 1.4x + 1.25x is f/8.
  • The lens is really sharp.  The Olympus 300mm f/4 was one of the sharpest lenses that I have photographed with, and it appears that the OM System 150-400 is also really sharp.  I do need more time with the lens in the field to fully test the sharpness.  But, so far, I like the sharpness of the lens.
Sandhill Crane, 438mm (876mm with Crop Factor), ISO 1000, f/6.3
Sandhill Crane, 438mm (876mm with Crop Factor), ISO 1000, f/6.3

Was it Worth the Wait and the Price?

Well, it’s still early.  I’ve only had one outing with the lens.  I really like the sharpness of the lens, the convenience of the zoom, the image stabilization with Sync-IS, and the focal length range with the 1.25x teleconverter. 

Although it is bigger than all other Micro Four Thirds lenses, I found that the size and weight were still very manageable and not too heavy to carry on a 2 hour photo walk.

The price still stings a bit, but I did sell my old Canon gear at MPB to offset the price.

I plan on publishing more blogs on the OM System 150-400mm lens as I use the lens more in the field.

Written by Martin Belan

Related Blog Posts
Field Test Results of the Olympus 100-400mm f/5.0 – 6.3 Telephoto Lens for Bird and Wildlife Photography
Should You Upgrade to the Olympus M.Zuiko 150-400mm f/4.5 Pro Lens for Bird and Wildlife Photography
How to Use the Olympus / OM System Internal AF Limiter to Improve Your Bird Photography

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6 Comments

  • Carbonman

    Your 300mm f4 is going to suddenly be very lonely. I had the 150-400mm for about 14 months before a wildlife trip to Costa Rica; that was where I really learned how to use it and how incredible a lens it is. It seems to be every bit as sharp and contrasty as the 300mm f4.
    I also park the hood knob and tripod foot at about 4:00 o’clock when stowing it mounted on a camera body. The handy strap mounts on the tripod collar have the PD buttons so I can switch straps around as needed. I also put one of those silicone wristbands that charities sell around the barrel where the IS switch is to prevent it accidentally slid to the ‘OFF’ position.
    The only thing I hated was the lens + lens hood fabric/velcro cover. I bought an aftermarket 95mm plastic lens cap and fabricated a Sugru edge over everything but the pinch points to prevent it being accidentally dropped against the front element. There’s an Australian gent that makes printed caps that are similar.

    • Martin Belan

      Thanks for sharing your tips and experience with the 150-400mm. I’m not ready to sell the 300mm f/4 yet. But, the 100-400mm may be heading to MPB.

  • Ian

    Great blog thank you.

    Can I please clarify that you carried both the camera and lens with the Black Rapid strap only attached to the camera tripod socket, effectively allowing both to hang and swing upside down. I’ve never been sure how much load on the camera tripod socket is acceptable without causing damage. A photo of the set would be great.

    Thank you for your help.

    Regards, Ian.

    • Martin Belan

      Hi Ian,

      Thanks for the feedback. I carried the OM-1 and 150-400mm attaching the Black Rapid strap to the Lens tripod Mount. I will clarify that in the blog and try to attach a photo!

      Martin

  • Tammy

    Martin,
    Similar to you. I ordered from B&H on 11/9/22 and got the lens 8/3/23. The 300 f4 has been my go-to since coming over from Nikon about a year and a half ago. I’m not making any quick decisions about that lens yet as I still need to put the 150-400 through its paces but I’m looking forward to the flexibility.
    Cheers!
    Tammy

    • Martin Belan

      Hi Tammy. Thanks for sharing your experience on purchasing / receiving the 150-400mm lens. It looks like OMDS is ramping up production.

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