No Flares or the “Right” Flares? – ON THE COUCH Ep. 21 part 2 of 3 – ZEISS vs. SLR Magic vs. Samyang

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In the second part of this episode featuring lens manufacturers ZEISS, SLR Magic and Samyang, we covered different philosophies when it comes to designing lenses.

I started out by posing the question whether it’s possible or not to design a lens that satisfies both filmmakers and photographers, being able to switch the amount of focus through the lens barrel has. Due to the mechanical design of most professional lenses this is something that seems impossible to achieve though, according to Andrew Chan.

We moved on to lens flares, which are imperfections in lenses that cause light flares when pointed at light sources at some angles. ZEISS and SLR Magic have very different opinions on this topic – where ZEISS tries to eliminate any flares to make lenses “perfect”, SLR Magic invests a lot of time in “getting the flares right”.

JJ Abrams sure loves his flares - here a still frame from "Star Trek" (2009) (copyright Paramount Pictures, all rights reserved)

JJ Abrams sure loves his flares – here a still frame from “Star Trek” (2009) (copyright Paramount Pictures, all rights reserved)

The final topic covered in this part was the multitude of lens mounts available, and the difficulty this poses for lens manufacturers and customers alike. Samyang for instance offers 12 different lens mounts for their lenses. Andrew from SLR Magic mentions how a lot of customers have problems moving between camera systems because of their prior investment in lenses with a specific mount – which they cannot always change or adapt to the new system.


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