Posts Tagged ‘olympus’

Olympus ex-CEO-Turned-Whistleblower Writes a Book About the Scandal

It was almost exactly one year ago that Olympus fired then-CEO Michael Woodford and started a chain of events that culminated in one of the largest financial scandals in Japanese history. Woodford received an incredible amount of international attention for his role in the saga, since he was one of the highest ranking executives ever to turn into a whistleblower.

He may have lost his $8-million-a-year job, but he likely won’t ever need another: in addition to settling for a reported $15.5 million over the breakup, Woodford is also cashing in by writing a book that offers his account of what transpired.
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Hacker Reportedly Finds Hidden Features in the Olympus OM-D EM-5

The Olympus OM-D EM-5 is a powerful little camera, but what owners are using these days many only be a portion of what the camera is fully capable of. 43 Rumors writes that an anonymous hacker is claiming to have hacked the camera using some firmware update trickery. What he or she found was quite interesting: hidden and locked features such as clean HDMI 4:2:2 output and focus peaking!
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Photographs Shot Using Olympus’ Quirky 15mm Body Cap Lens

One of the stranger announcements last month was Olympus’ new 15mm lens that doubles as a body cap for your camera. If you’ve been wondering, how the quirky $110 lens performs, check out these sample photos by UK photographer Peter Norman shot using an Olympus OM-D EM-5.
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Sony is Now the Largest Shareholder in Olympus

Sony has agreed to pour $645 million into Olympus in exchange for 11.5 percent of the embattled company, becoming the single largest shareholder. While the companies announced that they are considering cooperating in the digital camera industry, the main motivation for Sony wasn’t photographic imaging but body imaging. Olympus is one of the major players in the medical endoscope market, holding about 70% of sales, and Sony’s investment allows it to dip its toes into this lucrative industry.
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Former Olympus Executives Plead Guilty to Carrying Out Massive Financial Fraud

It looks like the Olympus financial scandal is finally coming to an end. It has been nearly a year since it came to light that there were massive cases of fraud and coverups going on in the upper echelons of Olympus management. What started as a CEO’s firing quickly spiraled into one of the biggest scandals to ever hit corporate Japan — the country’s equivalent of the US’ Enron fiasco.

In the end, a number of the company’s top executives were arrested after submitting their resignations. The trials for those former bigwigs are only now starting to get underway. Three of them, including former chairman Tsuyoshi Kikukawa (pictured above), pleaded guilty today to charges of falsifying accounts and covering up more than $1 billion in losses. The camera company itself also filed a guilty plea.
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Dead Bin Laden Shot with an Olympus Point-and-Shoot, Reportedly a Tough

After Osama bin Laden’s death in May 2011, there was immediately a public outcry for the release of photos showing his dead body. The AP even took legal action to force the publication of the images, but that effort was squashed by a federal judge earlier this year.

While it’s unlikely that we’ll ever set eyes on the photos in question, more information on how they were captured is emerging.
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Olympus Launches a Quirky 15mm Lens that Doubles as a Body Cap

In addition to its pretty standard cameras and lenses introduced this morning, Olympus also announced something quite unique: a body cap lens. It’s a pancake-style MFT-mount 3-element 15mm f/8 lens that is designed to replace your body old body cap. In 35mm terms, the focal length is equivalent to 30mm — not bad for casual snapshots.
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Olympus Unveils the E-PM2, E-PL5, and X-Z2: Two Mirrorless and a Compact

Olympus is entering Photokina week with three new cameras: the E-PM2 and E-PL5 for its PEN Micro Four Thirds lineup, and the X-Z2 as a flagship compact camera. Both PEN cameras feature a 16.1MP CMOS sensor, a max ISO of 25,600, in-body image stabilization, a 3-inch touchscreen, touch shooting, 8fps continuous shooting, photo filters, RAW files with in-camera editing, and 1080i HD video recording.
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Sony Will Reportedly Give Olympus $646 Million for a Stake in the Company

As Olympus attempts to regain its footing after the devastating financial scandal that rocked it this past year, rumors are swirling that Sony might play knight in shining armor in the saga by swooping in with financial assistance. Reuters reports that a cash for stake agreement might happen before the end of this month:

Sony Corp is in the final stages of talks to invest 50 billion yen ($646 million) in cash-strapped Olympus Corp, with an agreement expected by the end of September, state broadcaster NHK reported.

Sources familiar with the matter have told Reuters that Olympus is in talks with Sony to accept a cash injection in return for a stake.

Olympus is staying mum about these rumors. Murmurings of this potential deal first emerged back in June, when we reported that it would be worth more than 10% of Olympus. Other companies that were rumored to be interested in similar deals included Fujifilm and medical device maker Terumo.


Update: As part of the impending deal, Sony and Olympus will reportedly cooperate in promoting and developing digital camera gear. Interesting…


Image credit: Trying some new stuff by joshduffyphoto

Olympus SP-820UZ Packs a Ridiculous 40x Lens, Great for Wildlife and Jousting

We’ve been saying that the “compact” camera will still have a spot in the camera market, even after cell phones drink most of its milkshake, due to the fact that they can be specialized in ways phones can’t. Here’s another example: the new Olympus Stylus SP-820UZ is a super-zoom compact camera that packs an absurdly long 40x zoom lens. In 35mm terms, this lens reaches from 22.4mm to 896mm — wide angle to super telephoto. In case that’s not enough reach for you (“we need to go deeper!”), the camera also features a “super-resolution zoom” that uses digital zoom to offer up to 80x.
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