Leica Macro-Lux Line Expands with +0.5 and +2 Diopters

Leica announced the original +1 Macro-Lux Diopter last year and it has quickly become the go-to clamp-on diopter for a wide range of productions. If you didn’t catch the announcement at NAB 2016, I’ll recap for you really quickly… The Macro-Lux +1 is essentially a super high quality clamp-on diopter. If you’re not familiar with diopters, think of them as a very quick way to achieve closer focus than what’s normally possible. A +1 is a pretty standard magnification which is why Leica released this one first. Now you can achieve even greater artistic goals with the +0.5 and +2 Macro-Lux. Continue reading Leica Macro-Lux Line Expands with +0.5 and +2 Diopters

Tokina’s Gateway to Cinema: The 11-16mm

I’ve written about the Tokina 11-16mm many, many times. In fact, I was temporarily banned from REDUser years ago for backhandedly plugging the Duclos 11-16mm conversion – breaking the rules of the forum. I’ve since cleaned up my act (sort of). I speak often of the Duclos 11-16mm, and when I do, I always give credit to Tokina for making such a great product. I wanted to take a post here and acknowledge the original lens, it’s heritage, influence, and evolution over the past (nearly) decade.  Continue reading Tokina’s Gateway to Cinema: The 11-16mm

The Ultimate Vintage Lens Test

Over the course of two days, in a studio in Burbank, California, a band of self-proclaimed “lens geeks” set out to complete the ultimate vintage cinema lens test. The project first began as a collaboration between ShareGrid’s Brent Barbano, and Duclos Lenses’ own Matthew Duclos. Initially, Barbano and Duclos had been planning to complete a rather small-scale lens test with the industry’s most popular and widely used vintage lenses. However, upon approaching director and cinematographer Mark Lafleur to ask him to participate, they discovered that he too was getting ready to carry out his own vintage lens test. The two sides decided to join forces, and before long a whole team was assembled. With Lafleur and Barbano as Directors and Executive Producers, and Duclos as Lens Consultant, Kyle Stryker was brought on as Director of Photography. The team also came to include Camera Assistants Matthew Borek and Michelle Diaz, and Nick Ferriero as Editor. Continue reading The Ultimate Vintage Lens Test

Field Test – Duclos 2x Extender

For many years now I have used 1.4x and 2x extenders with my still lenses for both photography and video, and I am familiar with their advantages as well as their shortcomings.  Since PL mount lenses have really become my gear of choice lately, I was in the market for a good PL mount 2x extender. I am now the happy owner of the Duclos 2x Extender and I wanted to take a minute to share my first impressions of it. Continue reading Field Test – Duclos 2x Extender

Rokinon Reveals Two New Xeen Primes

Not even six months ago, Rokinon announced a new line of cinema prime lenses deemed Xeen. This new prime lens set consisted of a 24mm, 50mm, and 85mm – intended to compete with the likes of Zeiss, Schneider, and Canon in terms of tech specs, features, and image quality. But there was no competition when it came to price. The Xeen primes halved the price of any of the aforementioned brands with little to no compromise elsewhere. Rokinon has filled in the obvious gaps with a 35mm T1.5 and a 14mm T3.1. Continue reading Rokinon Reveals Two New Xeen Primes

Phil Holland Takes The Otus Trio Out For A Spin

Phil Holland, a friend and Zeiss Embassador, recently published an article on Zeiss’ cleverly titled blog – LENSPIRE. The post explores the conditions in which Phil finds himself needing the absolute best image quality possible, and how the Zeiss Otus primes allow him to achieve his vision. With an ever growing line up, 28mm f/1.4, 55mm f/1.4, and 85mm f/1.4, the Otus line continues to set the bar for photographers and cinematographers alike. Continue reading Phil Holland Takes The Otus Trio Out For A Spin

Rokinon, Cine, Cine DS, and Xeen – What’s The Difference?

As with many lens manufacturers, Rokinon tapped into a market they may or may not have anticipated and as a result, their product line evolved along with user demand. The same thing happened with Zeiss when they realized that we were modifying their ZF line of lenses for cinema use. Back at headquarters in Germany, a quick visit to the engineering department and, BAM! Compact Primes. So what’s the difference between the Rokinon Cine, Cine DS, and Xeen primes? Is one better than the other? Why the big price difference? Should I sell my Cine lenses and get the DS lenses? Let’s take a more in-depth look at the line and try to answer these questions. Continue reading Rokinon, Cine, Cine DS, and Xeen – What’s The Difference?

PL Macro Extension Tube from Duclos Lenses

Ext Tube

Duclos Lenses has released a new Macro Extension Tube for PL mount lenses. If you’ve never used an extension tube before, head on over to Cambridge in Colour and soak up some knowledge. Continue reading PL Macro Extension Tube from Duclos Lenses

Micro 4/3 Wide Angle Comparo

wide angle comparo

Here’s a quick one for ya.
Veydra just began shipping the 12mm Mini Prime which completes the full set. I’ve had some time to play with it and I have to say it’s impressive considering it’s wide angle nature and the fact that it’s coming out of China. Like I said in previous posts with the other Veydra Mini Primes, these are probably the only Chinese lenses that I enjoy using. But how does it stack up to a few other options? Continue reading Micro 4/3 Wide Angle Comparo

Quick Look: Canon 50-1000mm Close Focus Performance

In this post, we’re going to take a quick look at the Canon 50-1000mm Cine-Servo – a lens that some may consider impractical or unnecessary. I disagree! A few weeks back I had a client that was considering adding Canon’s new super zoom to his kit. He does a lot of wildlife and nature documentary work but didn’t think that 1,000mm was a reasonable range. If you asked me that same question six months ago I probably would have agreed. However, after some hands-on time with the lens here in the shop, I’ve definitely found the silver lining. Continue reading Quick Look: Canon 50-1000mm Close Focus Performance

Rokinon Takes Aim with New Xeen Cinema Prime Lenses

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Rokinon posted a not-so-subtle hint at their upcoming Xeen product line to their Facebook page earlier today. The photo shows a Xeen branded pirate ship blasting a Zeiss CP.2 and Canon CN-E out of the water. Not much mincing of words there. Continue reading Rokinon Takes Aim with New Xeen Cinema Prime Lenses

Leica 70-180mm Cinema Conversion from Duclos Lenses

Duclos-70-180mm

Back in 2009 we began shipping our Tokina 11-16mm cine conversion. We honestly had no idea it would be so successful. About a week after we initially started shipping our 11-16mm lens, customers began asking what our next project was. You see… We don’t just convert any lens. We look for something different – something unique. At the time we released our 11-16mm lens, there really wasn’t anything else in the same category. There were a few high-end options that were 6x – 8x the price of our lens or some vintage lenses that simply didn’t perform very well when compared to the 11-16mm. These days you can find the 11-16mm with cinema features from any number of companies including lens shops in Germany, China, and even from Tokina themselves. I can confidently say that our cinema conversion is still the best option out there by a large margin. So – the next project… Continue reading Leica 70-180mm Cinema Conversion from Duclos Lenses

ShareGrid – A New Approach To Equipment Rental

ShareGrid - Super Speed

Rental houses have been the backbone of motion picture acquisition equipment for decades. They paved the way for professionals to get their hands on the gear they needed. The way I see it, there are a few different types: the seasoned professionals who demand nothing but Panavision gear for their projects. That’s fine… Panavision works very hard to meet the needs of their clientele and they deserve the reputation they’ve earned. Then there’s the other working pros who enjoy a slightly more progressive approach with more options. They’ll turn to popular rental houses such as Clairmont Camera, Otto Nemenz, Keslow Camera, The Camera House, and dozens more. The rental house environment has undeniable advantages for working professionals. The gear is properly maintained by qualified technicians, the prep space is an absolute dream at most rental houses, and the overall experience can make your entire production run more efficiently with a good rental house. But what if you’re looking for something a bit more budget friendly? Continue reading ShareGrid – A New Approach To Equipment Rental

Canon CN-E Primes – An In-Depth Look

cneclustrCanon announced their CN-E Primes back in 2011 with only a 24, 50, and 85mm. They quickly added the 14, 35, and 135mm to the line-up providing cinematographers an set of six lenses from 14 through 135mm. The lenses are plenty sharp and built rather well. Duclos Lenses saw the potential of these primes and took action. In this post, we’re going to dive into what makes the Canon CN-E Primes such great lenses and why Duclos Lenses chose these particular lenses for modification to PL mount.  Continue reading Canon CN-E Primes – An In-Depth Look

Veydra, First To Offer M4/3 Cinema Primes

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAUntil now, shooting cinema on a Micro 4/3 camera meant you were using still photo lenses or lenses that were adapted or modified for motion picture use. The new Veydra Mini Primes are the first lenses to be built from the ground up as motion picture cinema lenses specifically for the Micro 4/3 platform. Considering the super shallow flange depth and tiny sensor size of Micro 4/3, the options for adapting lenses is almost limitless. But what if you’re using a Blackmagic or Panasonic GH4 in a professional environment and don’t have time to fiddle with adapters or down-time for vintage lens repair? The Veydra Mini Primes seem to be filling a gap that no one else has with a purpose built Micro 4/3 cinema lens. Continue reading Veydra, First To Offer M4/3 Cinema Primes