Tamron, Kenko Tokina boost Micro Four Thirds lens alliance

Two third-party camera lens makers lend their weight to the interchangeable lens system backed by Olympus and Panasonic.

Micro Four Thirds logo

Tamron and Kenko Tokina, two third-party lens manufacturers, have thrown their weight behind the Micro Four Thirds alliance, helping Olympus and Panasonic during a major shift in the camera industry.

Olympus and Panasonic were the early entrants to a new class of interchangeable-lens cameras much more compact than traditional SLRs. They're both members of the Micro Four Thirds partnership that governs image sensors and lenses, meaning that Micro Four Thirds lenses can be used on either company's camera bodies.

The new membership, like that of third-party lensmaker Sigma before, means photographers can expect more variety for Micro Four Thirds cameras. That's important because right now, traditional SLRs have a much wider range available for photographers eager for fisheyes, supertelephotos, and anything in between.

Competing with the Micro Four Thirds group are several other incompatible lens-mount systems from Nikon, Sony, Samsung, Pentax, and now Fujifilm as well.

Olympus announced Tamron's arrival in the group today. Also joining Micro Four Thirds is another Japanese company, Astrodesign, which sells professional video and testing equipment

Via 4/3 Rumors

About the author

Stephen Shankland has been a reporter at CNET since 1998 and covers browsers, Web development, digital photography and new technology. In the past he has been CNET's beat reporter for Google, Yahoo, Linux, open-source software, servers and supercomputers. He has a soft spot in his heart for standards groups and I/O interfaces.


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