The Ultimate Anamorphic Lens Test

Yep. We did it again. Last year the folks at ShareGrid, Old Fast Glass, a brilliant, talented crew, and myself came together to test a wide variety of vintage lenses to give the cinematography world a sort of sampling, flight, if you will, of the various vintage lenses and what sort of characteristics you can expect with when using them. It’s been shared thousands of times and utilized in who knows how many pre-production meetings to determine the visual aesthetics as it pertains to lenses for a specific project.

So what’s next… ANAMORPHIC! The subject that baffles so many with a shroud of mystery. Optics designed to provide a wider field of view when bound by a specific format, fashioned by unsung geniuses from around the world – some a shining beacon of optical engineering superiority, and others a trophy of intentional flaw for the sake of introducing artifacts and characteristics that, to the average viewer, carries a subconscious nostalgia, lending honesty and legitimacy. But most importantly… They’re beautiful! Continue reading The Ultimate Anamorphic Lens Test

The Missing Milvus Link: 35mm f/1.4

Zeiss launched their Milvus line back in September of 2015 and has continued to add focal lengths over the past two years including the still-new 15mm, 18mm, and 135mm. Originally, the Milvus line was Zeiss’ answer to the long-in-the-tooth Classic line of primes which desperately needed an optical design overhaul. The initial line of Milvus primes included a brand new, fast 50mm and 85mm, but lacked a fan favorite; 35mm f/1.4. Until now… Continue reading The Missing Milvus Link: 35mm f/1.4

The Pacific Northwest Lens Summit

That’s right. It’s a lens test. I’ll be joining host Michael Koerner at his facility Koerner Camera Systems in Portland Oregon in just a few weeks. The perfect bridge between NAB and Cine Gear – Koerner will be hosting a range of manufacturers to showcase their latest gear. Less of a shootout and more of a hands-on event, we’ll be pairing up cameras and lenses and giving each a go to see what works best in different situations.

We’ll have lenses and reps from the following:

  • Angenieux
  • Arri
  • Canon
  • Cooke
  • Fujinon
  • IB/E
  • Leica
  • Lomo Illumina
  • PS Technik
  • Raptor
  • Sigma
  • Tokina
  • Zeiss

So how about it? Join us! No need to RSVP. You can find the event details over on Koerner’s facebook page. Looks like it’s going to be a good time. Come hang out. Drink. Eat. Mingle. I’ll have some swag on hand to give away. If you’re a lens geek like me and Michael Koerner, you’ll be in good company.

Goodbye CP.2 – Hello CP.3!

Zeiss pulled the veil of their long anticipated update to the Compact Prime line which will officially be called the CP.3 and CP.3 xD. The new line will consist of FF35 primes ranging from 15mm to 135mm in a lightweight, compact cinema housing. The new lenses will feature high performance optics at affordable prices with a couple of features not yet seen in the Sub-$5K market. Let’s take a look at the details of Zeiss’ new cinema primes.

Continue reading Goodbye CP.2 – Hello CP.3!

A Closer Look at Rokinon’s New ‘Special Performance’ Line of Primes

I know… Another Rokinon post. What can I say? They’re in high gear and don’t show any signs of slowing down anytime soon. Samyang, the magicians behind the Rokinon line of photo and cinema lenses have another new line of primes. Several months ago they announced their native E-mount auto-focus lenses which I completely ignored since they don’t really interest me (google it if auto-focus E-mount primes interest you), but Rokinon has just begun shipping two primes in a new line they’re calling “Speical Performance” or “SP” for short. Currently, these two lenses consist of a 14mm f/2.4 and an 85mm f/1.2. I spent a few weeks with the new 85mm so let’s give that a closer look Continue reading A Closer Look at Rokinon’s New ‘Special Performance’ Line of Primes

Angenieux Adds 48-130mm to Optimo Style Line

Ahead of NAB 2017, Angenieux has announced another addition to the Optimo Style line of zooms – a 48-130mm T3. The 48-130mm features a 2.7x zoom range along with the other lightweight Optimo Style zooms, the 16-40mm and 30-76mm. It weighs 4.3 lbs and Angenieux states it is idea for hand held, steadicam and drones productions. Continue reading Angenieux Adds 48-130mm to Optimo Style Line

Fuji X-Mount for Veydra Mini Primes Coming Soon

The increasing popularity of Fujifilm’s cameras for quick, nimble motion picture work has begun another trend in the mirrorless realm – using legacy legacy lenses for cinematic work. Similar to the popularity of the Sony E-mount ecosystem, the X-mount features a similar shallow flange depth that makes adapting older SLR lenses a breeze with a plethora of cheap, accessible adapters. But what if you wanted an affordable, purpose built cinema lens for the X-mount system without using cheap, flimsy adapters?  Continue reading Fuji X-Mount for Veydra Mini Primes Coming Soon

Leica Announces New Thalia Line Ahead of NAB

Here’s something a bit different from everyone’s favorite German lens manufacturer – Leica’s new Thalia prime lenses which tout a massive 60mm image circle. More than enough to cover any current digital cinema sensors. The new Thalia line takes aim at cinematographers looking for a more character-rich image.  Continue reading Leica Announces New Thalia Line Ahead of NAB

Fujinon’s New MK Series Launches With An 18-55mm T2.9, TRY IT at Duclos!

Fujifilm has been busy… If you’re a Fuji fan like I am, you’ve been completely obsessed with the new GFX mirrorless medium format camera and haven’t been paying attention to the other projects they’ve been working on. Which, when you think about it – is mind boggling, that Fujifilm is doing so much at once. This particular move is a bit different for Fujifilm. Instead of making something that fits tightly into their own ecosystem, Fujinon Optical Systems has designed and manufactured a purpose built cinema lens, exclusively for E-mount cinema cameras. A whole new line they’re calling the MK series. The first lens in the line will be the brand new MK18-55mm T2.9. Let’s explore!
Continue reading Fujinon’s New MK Series Launches With An 18-55mm T2.9, TRY IT at Duclos!

LENS GUTS – A New Video Series from Duclos Lenses

Duclos Lenses released the first video in a new series they’re calling LENS GUTS. The name says it all. Lens geek, Matthew Duclos, sits down with a new lens each episode and tears into it, showing us the materials, build quality, and techniques used while he discusses the history or lesser known facts about each “patient”.  Continue reading LENS GUTS – A New Video Series from Duclos Lenses

Ever Wonder How Cooke Lenses Are Made?

When Cooke advertises their lenses as “hand built in the UK”, they’re not joking. As someone who’s been lucky enough to experience the Cooke factory first-hand, I can confirm that every single lens is hand built by skilled technicians. This video shot by Florin Gabor back in 2013 takes us on a nice tour through the factory and shows a glimpse of each step of the lens manufacturing process. Continue reading Ever Wonder How Cooke Lenses Are Made?

Rokinon adds 16mm T2.6 to Xeen Line

Last week Rokinon announced that the latest addition to their XEEN by Rokinon line, the 16mm T2.6 lens, is available immediately from authorized dealers. This is the first XEEN lens to be released since the 135mm lens began shipping last July, and is the first (but most likely not the last) XEEN of 2017. Continue reading Rokinon adds 16mm T2.6 to Xeen Line

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

Duclos Lenses Presents Sigma Cine at the ASC Clubhouse : A Photo Recap

Last month Sigma revealed that they were (finally) entering the cinema world with a brand new set of cine zooms and primes. On Thursday October 6th, with the help of Duclos Lenses, Sigma hosted a launch event for these new lenses at the ASC Clubhouse in Hollywood, California. Continue reading Duclos Lenses Presents Sigma Cine at the ASC Clubhouse : A Photo Recap

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