Innovations From Panavision: New Large Format Lenses and LCND Liquid Crystal Active ND Filters

by | Jun 25, 2018 | News | 0 comments

PanavisionDXLwAB battAlthough not yet all rentable products, Panavision used the occasion of Cine Gear Expo to preview some interesting new innovations they are working on.  Besides a host of improvements to the Millennium DXL line based on Cinematographer feedback, they introduced several new lines of large format lenses.  Primo XThe new Primo X lenses, specially designed for use on drones and gimbals, are fully sealed, weather proof, and counterbalanced to be aerodynamic, and able to easily maintain a proper center of gravity.   They come in two primes – 14mm (T3.1) and 24mm (T1.6) – and one 24-70mm zoom (T2.8), and will be available in 2019.

PanaSpeed is a large-format update of the classic Primo look. At T1.4, PanaSpeed will be the fastest large-format lens option available on the market, and will be available in Q3 2018.  Ultra Vista is a series of large-format anamorphic optics using a custom 1.6x squeeze.  Ultra Vistas will cover the full height of the 8K sensor in the DXL and presents an ultra-widescreen 2.76:1 aspect ratio along with a classic elliptical bokeh and Panavision horizontal flare. They will be available in 2019, while the H series, a new set of spherical lenses, which tries to capture the feel of vintage glass with special coating for slightly elevated blacks for softer contrast, are available now.

Pana LCNDPerhaps most intriguing was a technology demo of a dynamically adjustable liquid crystal neutral density (LCND) filter. LCND instantly adjusts up to six individual stops with a single click or ramp.  This is a significant departure from traditional approaches to front-of-lens filters, which require either carrying a set and manually swapping individual NDs, behind the lens on a filter wheel, or opposing polarized filters, which means you can’t add a traditional polarizing effect.  The LCND starts at 0.3 and goes through 0.6, 0.9, 1.2, 1.5, to 1.8, and will be available in 2019.


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