Tales from the lens hood

Olympus makes great lenses.  Only problem is they don’t supply lens hoods with them unless you buy one of the pro lenses.  I find that unfortunate.  All lenses should come with a properly design lens hood that works efficiently.  We can dream can’t we?

Anyways, have you seen the price of some of the lens hoods Olympus offers?  Exactly.  If you went browsing on Amazon or other retails you will immediately come across third-party lens hoods that are significantly cheaper than the Olympus hood for the same lens.  I have to admit..I do own some of these.  And for the price (generally under $15 US) I had to give them a try.  How different could they be?  Everyone likes to save a little money right?

I bought the JJC brand lens hood for the Olympus 17mm, 45mm, and the 60mm macro.  The JJC hood for the 17mm is nice.  It is metal and works great.  I was quite surprised.  The JJC hood for the 45 works well too and is similar to the Olympus…but the fit is not 100% perfect.  It locks on and works fine…but you know its not 100%.  And then we came to the 60mm macro hood.

jjc lens hood review
Olympus hood on left, JJC on right

Both hoods look very similar.  The hood does actually fit well and locks into place.  That is where the similarity ends.  The interior of the olympus has grooves all around and seems to be more “matte” than the JJC.  The JJC seems to have more interior reflection.

jjc lens hood review
Interiors are different

The other big difference was in the sliding mechanism.  The 60mm macro hood works just like the 40-150 Pro sliding hood except you don’t need to twist anything.  You just push to slide it down over the lens, and then pull out to lock it back into place for use.  (this is the only multi-piece hood that hasn’t exploded on me yet…)

The JJC hood is a nightmare to slide.  It sticks and just doesn’t have a smooth motion at all.  It is rather difficult.  The Olympus need a firm push or pull to initiate and then slide smooth as butter.  It locks into place with confidence.

I was surprised how different this was.  The Olympus is worth the money in this case if you want the sliding action.

All in all, third party hoods seem to be a hit or miss depending on the model.  If all the JJC hoods were like the 17mm hood, they would have been a first choice for the price.  Sadly it seems more trial and error.  Then again, for the price maybe it works for you.  For the pro lenses, I haven’t tried any other hoods since Olympus supplies them.  So far so good there.  Have you tried any third party hoods?  Had any different experiences with the JJC branded hoods?  Drop me a line in the comments below!


8 responses on "Tales from the lens hood"

  1. I’m new to Olympus/Pen F, and have been building up my desired inventory of mainly prime lenses. Your comments mirror my own experiences almost exactly.
    I found a good 3rd-party (not JJC, but unbranded) metal screw-in lenshood for my 17mm, and my Sigma 30mm came with a hood, as did the Samyang 10mm. I bought a bayonet-fitting JJC hood for the 45mm, which is fine, but went for the Olympus hood for my 60mm macro.
    I wasn’t too happy with the 60mm hood price, but the reviews from people who’d bought 3rd-party hoods for this lens were mostly pretty dismal, so original for me there.
    My previous MFT experience has been with Panasonics, and I’m using a couple of old lenses from them; both of which were supplied new with hoods.

  2. I have a JJC hood for my Olympus 60mm lens. I had a Similar experience with it sliding action. I use a silicon lubeircu applied to the groves inside the hood. It does help but is not the answer to the sticking.
    Hope someone has a solution to this problem.

    • I’ve heard of people putting wax or other substances in the grooves as well. Some with good success. I don’t trust this. The last thing I need is for something to start melting, or leaking out, or who knows what when I am shooting in the sun in 100-degree F weather for an all day session. Then again, the right product applied might work. I’m not totally sold on this idea.

      • Hi Tony,
        I rubbed the grooves in the JJC hood with a piece of paraffin and left just a little bit of residue. Hardly enough to be visible, but it works fine to lube the grooves. Mine operates smoothly and reliably and no indication of anything flaking off. Works great for a lot less than the Olympus hood. I agree completely that Olympus should supply hoods with their lenses, like Panasonic does for most of theirs.

  3. I find the conclusion on the 60mm hood a bit strange. Because the jjc isn’t working as good as the original, then suddenly the heavily overpriced hood from Olympus is worth the money. No it is not. But because of the lack of properly working third party hoods. You are forced to pay.
    I have the jjc for my 75mm and 45mm f1.8.
    I find it very strange that a hood from Olympus is not part of the more expensive lenses.
    The 75mm as an example.

    • Kim you are correct…it is not magically worth the money…but when I am working I don’t have time for annoyances. The JJC was a super annoyance. I would just take it off instead of sliding it. That was actually less annoying. The Olympus hood just worked on the other hand. Yeah…I paid it. Olympus should definitely include it. Even if all their lenses were more to compensate I think people wouldn’t complain. We get some of these lenses for relatively low prices. Now people are used to that price point though. Hard to just raise it without getting flack. I think all the primes should have come with hoods. I understand the kit lenses without…but everything else should have.

      • I agree and I get your point.
        Jjc hood i have for 45mm 1.8 is very “plastic” and easy to put on wrong.
        Jjc on the 75mm is metal. I haven’t had in problems
        I have the jjc for the 40-150 not-pro and it feels similar to the 45mm.
        With the high prices, one should think there iwa a market for 3. Party good quality hood for half the price.

  4. I bought a JJC hood for my 75mm lens and it saved the lens when I tripped on a set of stone stairs (too much in a hurry to catch a shot!). The hood is now dented and scratched where the end hit the step, but the lens was fine. If you have a choice between metal and plastic, after that experience, I’ve always chosen metal.

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