by Tim Fok | 29th November 2016
In case you hadn’t noticed, the industry is not done re-inventing the follow gear just yet. Canadian based Broken Anchor Design presents us with the ZERO on Kickstarter – the all universal, tool-less, seamless focus gear for stills lenses. There are predominantly two types of follow focus gears made for still lenses, the slim ones that you buy per lens, and the large ones that you only buy a couple of and that can accommodate a wide selection of lenses. ZERO falls into the second category, and the cool detail about Broken Anchor Design’s idea is that it is seamless – there no fixings around the edge to limit your focus throw. Below is their Kickstarter video. Don’t worry if you haven’t got 5 minutes, skip to 2:11 for all the relevant info. The ZERO universal focus gear uses an internal twist lock mechanism to grip lenses. Turning the lock will wind the fixings in until it reaches sufficient contact with your lens. This makes it quick to use and universally fitting any lenses between the 60-90mm diameter range. The outer, seamless perimeter allows continuous 360-degree rotation. Increasing the overall diameter of your lens to 125mm also means a reduction in gear ratio to extend the throw of your lens in conjunction with your follow focus. Despite the added bulkiness of a larger lens gear like this, the latter point makes sense and is a common problem when adapting to video that many do not initially think of. Another solution can be buying a follow focus specifically geared for a shorter throw, but this can often be more expensive if you want to retain the option to use it on larger cinema lenses also. The ZERO universal focus gear weighs 136g (0.29lbs), is made from aluminum and uses a standard 0.8 module gear pitch. It seems Broken Anchor Design has placed pricing in accordance to this being your only focus gear required for all your lenses. Excluding the early bird reward for speedy backers, the ZERO will set you back about $300USD. For more info on the ZERO focus gear, check out their Kickstarter page.Read more
by Fabian Chaundy | 5th February 2016
The Xeen cinema lenses released last year constitute the apex of Samyang’s catering towards filmmakers. Now, two new models have joined the Xeen family. A few years ago, Samyang’s affordable and all-manual photo prime lenses, became incredibly popular among budget filmmakers. Shortly after that, the Korean manufacturer built upon this initial success and continued to improve their range by featuring de-clicked aperture rings, focus gears and T-stop scales, and the Cine DS line of primes was born. Fast forward to 2015, when Samyang released their Xeen cinema lenses. Check out Richard’s article, from last August, which reveals why they are such a big deal. With an initial line-up of 24mm, 50mm and 85mm, the Xeen range offered a usable yet somewhat limited variety of focal lengths. However, promotional material on the Samyang page had been hinting at the imminent release of 2 new additions to the Xeen line. Well, they have finally been revealed. So, what new focal lengths can we expect from the new Xeen? Samyang is filling the centre gap with the standard and versatile focal length of 35mm. Landing between the 50mm—useful but potentially a little tight in certain situations—and the 24mm, which leans toward the wide angle side, the 35mm focal length will certainly be a welcome addition to the range. The other newcomer fills the gap at the ultra wide-angle end of the spectrum. With the release of a 14mm focal range rated at T3.1, we can see that Samyang’s Xeen range really reflects their previous Cine DS line rather than introducing completely new concepts, at least in what respects to focal lengths and T-stop rating. But Samyang couldn’t wait to leave us wanting for more. Upon revealing these two new additions, a new mystery lens has been added to their promotional material. Although it has been known for a while that there would be a sixth Xeen lens, initial speculation tended towards telephoto, perhaps a 100mm or 135mm. However, as you can see, we might see something quite different indeed. A strong contender for the new upcoming wide angle Samyang Xeen could be an 18mm, a focal length until now not available anywhere in the Samyang catalogue. There are of course other rectilinear wide-angle cine lenses in Samyang’s VDSLR range that they could draw inspiration from. The are, however, designed for APS-C or Micro Four Thirds sensors. All in all, considering the excellent build and image quality of the first three Xeen cinema lenses, we have nothing but high hopes for the new additions to the family. Be sure to check out Richard’s first impressions review for the low down on Samyang’s Xeen cinema lenses.Read more
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