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Lenses / Optics Posts

topblogs2016

As the year officially draws to a close, it’s time for our annual round-up of the most popular CineTechnica blog posts over the last 12 months. It’s been a busy 2016, and as usual a wide range of topics was represented – including new product announcements, comparison charts, workflow how-tos, custom scene files, and more.

Our Top 15 blogs are listed below in no particular order. Make sure to check them out, and let us know in the comments what you’d like to see us cover in 2017!

…continue reading Top Blogs of 2016

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Most cinema cameras today can work with lenses designed for cinema use, as well as those designed for still photography, but there are still important differences between these lenses. I teamed up with Snehal Patel from Zeiss to answer the question “what makes a lens a cinema lens”? In the video, we cover the wide range of Zeiss Cinema Lenses, which feature interchangeable shimmable mounts that allow them to work with just about every camera. We also demonstrate how to shim a lens and what that means. Zeiss cinema lenses also have full frame coverage, and we give a demonstration of what that means as well. Finally we discuss what make a lens a ‘super speed’ lens and what that looks like.

Watch the video above to learn all about Zeiss Cinema Lenses or jump to a specific topic using the links below.

…continue reading At the Bench: An Inside Look at Zeiss Cinema Lenses

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Fall Tech Expo

On Saturday, October 8, AbelCine held its first Fall Tech Expo. Taking place in our Chicago location on the Cinespace Studios lot, the expo featured a number of manufacturers displaying new gear for attendees to get their hands on. In addition, throughout the day, multiple raffles were held, along with presentations from manufacturer experts and our technical specialists on the showroom stage. Thank you again to all the manufacturers that participated as well to everyone who attended – we had a record turnout!

…continue reading Chicago Fall Tech Expo Recap

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zeiss 21-100As IBC 2016 draws closer, the internet is abuzz with rumors and announcements of new products to be introduced at this year’s show. One of the first official product announcements, published today, was the introduction of Zeiss’s newest offering in the lightweight zoom category, the LWZ.3 21-100mm T2.9-3.9.

The new 21-100mm lens weighs in at just over four pounds and features a speed of T2.9 on the wide end, which linearly ramps to around T3.9 when fully zoomed in. It is a very smooth and fairly subtle transition as you zoom in, one that is almost unseen in these type of variable aperture lenses. The minimum focus distance for the lens is right at about 2.9 feet with a generous 300 degrees of focus rotation, making this an extremely flexible option for both narrative and documentary shooters. Designed to match with both Ultra and Master primes, this lens will make a nice addition to round out a kit and provide the flexibility lacking in prime lenses’ single, fixed-focal lengths.

…continue reading Zeiss IBC 2016 Announcement: Lightweight Zoom 21-100mm

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ARRI’s line of Electronic Control Systems are popular accessories to use with many cameras, especially the ALEXA Mini. This is because ARRI’s wireless control unit, the WCU-4, not only controls motors attached directly to the Mini, but with the right license, the WCU-4 can also change settings on the camera. The WCU-4 works directly with the ALEXA Mini, as well as other ALEXA Plus cameras (ALEXA Plus, ALEXA XT Plus, and ALEXA SXT), or with their UMC-4 receiver, which means you can use it for a wide variety of scenarios.

In this video series, I will break down how to connect the WCU-4 with the Mini, and how to remote control the camera. Then in the second video, I give a demonstration of how to create lens mapping files to work with non-LDS or Cooke /i lenses. Check out the videos and let us know what you think in the comments section.

…continue reading At the Bench: ARRI WCU-4 Wireless Control Unit

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Full-Frame-Lens-Comparison-Chart062016

Zeiss’s new full frame lenses provide superior quality. With optimum image quality, full focus control, and cutting-edge design, the Milvus family of lenses are well suited for interviews, documentary work, music videos or corporate movies. The Otus lenses are designed for state-of-the-art cameras with high-resolution sensors. The Loxia lenses are perfect for filmmaking with their compact size. The Batis lenses are great for run-and-gun shooting, web videos, drone or gimbal shots. Our Full Frame Lens Lineup gives an overview of these Zeiss lenses and their various applications.

Click the image above to view a larger version of the chart, or download the pdf.

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In this Tech Talk, Rainer Hercher from CW-Sonderoptic joins me for a discussion of Leica’s new cinema products for NAB 2016. They’ve added the 40mm focal length, highly prized by many DPs, to the Summicron-C lens set. Summicron is Leica’s trade name for lenses that open to a T2 (or f/2 for stills lenses). Also new is a 15mm lens that will be available in October. This brings the Summicron line to 11 primes in all. The Summilux family, which all open to a T1.4, also has 11 lenses, but there are some minor differences in terms of focal lengths between the two lines.

Another new product is the Leica Cine Macrolux, a purpose-built macro diopter for digital cinema applications. Leica used a simple but highly precise optical design that yields no perceivable light loss, even when stacked. The Macrolux will fit any Summicron-C or Summilux-C cine lens (or any lens with 95mm front outer diameter). For more information, and to see these products in action, watch the video above.

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