Fujifilm Optical Division Blog

We had such a fantastic experience at NAB 2014, we’re still talking about it…but we’re not the only ones. For those who did not make it to Las Vegas this year, we’ve summarized “The Fujinon Experience” through a series of blog posts. Rounding out the recap, we bring you the words of some of the field’s most experienced and respected production, technology and engineering pros, as they appeared in posters featured throughout our booth.

“In our nearly 30-year history, we’ve always purchased Fujinon lenses for our six production trucks, and have put them through their paces. They are extremely reliable, and only require minor maintenance to keep them working properly. This kind of reliability is invaluable, particularly when working on a high profile assignment, such as the State of the Union Address, which we shot this year. One of the most challenging locations to use lenses is at The National Hot Rod Association’s drag racing events, which are extremely contaminated by gas fumes, car exhaust and burning rubber. If the lenses can stand up to these conditions, they can stand up to anything. The Fujinon lenses we’ve used are all securely weather proofed, so our engineers only have to do routine cleaning and replace front element lens filters to protect the front glass. Then, they’re ready to go.” - Spruce McRee, President/CEO, Crosscreek Television Productions

“We have had great success on all our virtual productions around the world using Fujinon lenses. The encoding, quality and configuration of the lenses are the best combination for our clients.” - Sam Nicholson, ASC - CEO and Founder, Stargate Studios

“I’m a longtime user of Fujinon lenses. The quality of the lenses has always been excellent, and from a technical standpoint it meets all our requirements. The Cabrio lenses in particular fit our niche market very well as a crossover between video and digital cinema. We buy those on a regular basis. We’ve also found the overall cost of ownership to be lower than competitors. Not only do we need fewer repairs on the Fujinon lenses, but when we do, it’s typically only for routine maintenance and service, and the costs are always lower than other companies. Plus, the service is great.” - Tom Dickinson, Chief Technology Officer, Bexel

“Since Nocturne Productions’ inception in the 1970s, we’ve only purchased Fujinon lenses and now have over 100 of their ENG, EFP and RoboCam lenses. Fujinon produces the most exceptional products in the industry, but they also provide unparalleled support. When we’re on a global tour with the biggest acts around, from Lady Gaga to The Rolling Stones, to Paul McCartney, they can’t stop in the middle of a show, and neither can we. If something goes wrong, it needs to be fixed right away, and the personal service I get from Fujinon can’t be matched.” - David Lemmink, Director of Engineering, PRG Nocturne

“We’ve been Fujinon customers here in the Nashville remote operations group for decades. There’s a reason we keep coming back. The quality and performance of Fujinon lenses is beyond reproach. Support from sales and service is unmatched, and they make a lens that meets our every need. Their new Cabrio line is the ideal mix of a cine-style lens with familiar broadcast-style controls. They were the natural choice for our entry into large-format imager technology.” - Danny Walters, Director, Remote Engineering, Music Group, Viacom Media Networks

“Fujinon’s new 99x has quickly proven itself as an effective tool for the "Entertainment and Award Show" side of the TV business. Awards shows such as the Oscars and Grammys need lenses with extreme optical and low light performance; they are placed into critical camera positions with challenging distances to the stage. Camera operators who specialize in these Entertainment shows prefer Fujinon lenses because of their smooth servo "feel," useful lens features, and reliable performance. Fujinon has earned a reputation in the live television production industry for quick and reliable service, emergency loaners, and dependable support.” - Keith Winikoff, Technical Director and Video Engineer for Entertainment and Live Award Show Productions

“The Fujinon Cabrio series has made a big impact on the way our clients shoot. Whether they shoot documentaries, live events or run-and-gun features, they love having the choice of a single PL-mounted zoom, where they might have had two zooms or set of primes. The servo motor serves ENG-style shooting flawlessly and it’s good enough for cinematic commercial shoots. The focal range, weight and quality put the Cabrio series in a class of its own.” - Erik & Oliver Schietinger, Owners, TCS

Have questions or comments about Fujinon lenses? Connect with us on our Facebook page, or tweet us.

Posted: 7/30/2014 1:27:04 PM by Thom Calabro | with 0 comments


NAB 2014 may be over, but our roster of accomplished and loyal customers is still going strong. If you attended the show and stopped by our booth, you undoubtedly noticed the many posters featuring some of the field’s most distinguished professionals, spanning the industry from cinematographers to engineers. For those who did not make it to Las Vegas, in a recent blog post we provided a sampling of the commentary that was featured. Now, we’re sharing it all. If you want to know how some of the most successful cinematographers are using Fujinon lenses in digital cinema, keep reading.

“I have used the Fujinon PL Zooms on my last two movies, Oblivion and Tomorrowland, and love them. They are sharp, no distortion, and are beautiful wide open.” -Claudio Miranda, ASC, Cinematographer

“I started using Fujinon lenses on Lone Survivor. The director, Peter Berg, wanted to shoot the film in a handheld, documentary-shooting style, switching focal lengths between takes instead of using prime lenses. When I came across Fujinon’s 19-90 at Keslow Camera, I was blown away. It holds the exposure consistently all the way through, and I love the image quality, sharpness, and how it holds the highlights. The lens flares are beautiful and I ended up using them as a lighting effect. It's the perfect handheld lens and it became my workhorse on Lone Survivor; I shot at least 70% of the film on the 19-90 and I don’t know how we could have done it otherwise.” -Tobias Schliessler, ASC, Cinematographer

“We’ve used Fujinon’s optical zoom lenses for the last 25 years. The first time I saw and tested the 18-85 PL Zoom lens, it was the best thing I’d ever seen and it’s still my favorite. Not only is it a T2.0 lens with an excellent range, but to me, 18-85 means I can put that lens on my camera, shoot 95% of all my interiors, and have excellent quality on film or digital. The T2 stop is extremely fast and honest; wide open, the zoom looks great. With all the zooms, like the 24-180 and the 75-400, when you focus, there’s hardly any breathing, and they match perfectly with Zeiss Master Primes and the Leica Summilux. They’re also extremely good with skin tones, so actors love them. We’ve used Fujinon’s zoom lenses on all kinds of pictures, including Iron Man 3, Dumb and Dumber, Fast and Furious 7, We Bought a Zoo, and RIPD, to name just a few. Quality-wise, they are the best there is right now.” -Otto Nemenz, Owner, Otto Nemenz International

“I grabbed the first Fujinon Cabrios in Hollywood and immediately put them on my new show, Real Husbands of Hollywood. I was impressed by the image quality and ergonomics. The director was thrilled—he could keep the spontaneity of the scene without having to wait for lens changes. This was a game changer for us. With the addition of the telephoto and wide versions, we can cover practically any shot with perfectly matching optics, with absolutely no compromise. We had some bigger, heavier lenses on the truck for special shots but we sent them back to the rental house once we saw what we had with the Cabrios. For handheld work, there just isn’t anything that comes even close.” -Bill Sheehy, Director of Photography

“Since I first used Fujinon’s 18-85mm, I’ve never gone back to another zoom lens. It’s the only one that gives you consistently superior optical quality from its widest setting to its longest setting, with no tradeoffs in between. The level of quality is something I’ve ever seen before in a zoom lens for digital cinematography and 35mm film. It’s a very fast lens that prevents me from having to make the kind of quality compromises other zoom lenses force cinematographers to make. The operation stays smooth and consistent in all kinds of weather conditions, and the lens hasn’t needed any maintenance or repair since I got it over a year ago. It’s given me a very versatile, capable tool to realize the director’s vision and the creative goals of the production. The 18-85 has raised the bar on optical excellence.” -Eric Steelberg, ASC, Cinematographer

“As a documentary DP, my lens is what brings me into the world of the story. The Cabrio 19-90mm is gorgeous, balanced, and the perfect range for vérité shooting.” -Tom Curran, Director of Photography, Night Train Pictures, Inc.
For even more insight, tune into our next blog, where we’ll share what some of the top production, technology and engineering pros have to say about using Fujinon lenses in broadcast and video applications.

Have questions or comments about Fujinon lenses? Connect with us on our Facebook page, or tweet us.

Posted: 7/15/2014 11:38:39 AM by Thom Calabro | with 0 comments


 

Fujifilm Optical Devices Director of Marketing & Product Development, Thom Calabro, introduces Fujinon's new PL 14-35mm T 2.9 Cabrio lens. The PL 14-35mm Cabrio lens has a detachable digital servo drive, and can be used as a self-contained ENG-style lens or cine style lens. This lens is ideal for shooters looking for a lightweight zoom that can be used as a handheld so they can capture wide angles in tight spaces.

Go to www.Fujinon.com, or follow us at www.Facebook.com/FujifilmOptical and www.Twitter.com/FujifilmOptical

Posted: 12/2/2013 11:11:23 AM by Thom Calabro | with 0 comments


We are pleased to share that Talamas Sales and Rentals, a broadcast equipment rental house in Boston, recently took delivery of the new FUJINON PL 85-300 (ZK3.5x85), making it the first in the region to receive the HDTV PL mount zoom lens.

Dave Talamas, president of the rental house, expects strong demand for the PL 85-300, following in the footsteps of the PL 19-90, with which they’ve had tremendous success.
Talamas credits the design of the two Cabrio lenses with providing exactly what the market needs: fast, lightweight, multipurpose lenses offering ideal focal ranges at a price point sweet spot.

While demand for the PL 19-90 has been very strong and feedback has been positive, Talamas customers were asking for something a little bit longer. When the PL 85-300 became available, the Talamas team knew the new lens’ longer focal length would be of great use for beauty shots, nature cinematography, sports documentaries, and other applications.

Talamas Chief Engineer Anthony Bottaro considers both lenses to be crossovers, as they combine the look, resolution, and other picture attributes associated with large sensor PL mount zoom lenses, but with the compact, lightweight “run and gun” functionality ENG/EFP shooters expect.

This lens seems to be particularly appealing to ENG shooters who like to be agile and follow the action. Talamas Senior Video Technician Daniel Ardizzoni tributes that to there being a digital servo handgrip right on the lens for zoom control in combination with today’s small, lightweight digital cameras.

While those shooting ENG-style are right at home with the servo unit attached to the lens, both Cabrio lens models are designed to allow cinematographers to detach the handgrip and shoot instead with industry-standard cine motors and matte boxes, as well as FUJINON wired or wireless controllers. The digital servo on Cabrio lenses has 16-bit encoding to ensure that lens data output is extremely accurate.
The FUJINON PL 85-300 offers a focal length of 85-220mm at T2.9 and 300mm at T4.0. Weighing 3.0kg with servo and 2.5kg without, the lens offers flange focal distance adjustment, 200-degree focus rotation, a short MOD, a macro function for close-ups of objects and the images captured cover a 31.5mm diagonal sensor size.

Have questions about the PL 85-300 or any of our other professional lenses? Leave a comment here, on our Facebook page, or tweet us.

Posted: 3/20/2013 2:39:48 PM by Thom Calabro | with 0 comments


The Fujifilm Optical Devices Division will show a variety of new lenses and upgrades at this year’s NAB Show at the Las Vegas Convention Center from April 8-11. FUJINON lenses for broadcasting, sports, digital cinematography and production applications will be on display at Booth C7525, including an enhanced version of the Emmy-Award winning, “Precision Focus Assist” technology and the latest in PL Mount, EFP, Studio and ENG lenses.

Making their NAB debut this year are two high-performance lenses: the Premier PL 85-300 Cabrio lens (model ZK3.5x85) and the XA99x8.4 UltraWide field production lens.

Designed using the latest optical simulation technology, the PL 85-300 Cabrio not only offers exceptional optical performance in the center of the image, but in the corners of the frame, as well. Like the highly acclaimed PL 19-90mm Cabrio (Model ZK4.7x19), the PL 85-300 is equipped with the same indispensable features including flange focal distance adjustment, a MOD of 1.2m, a macro function for objects as close as 97mm (3.8-inches), and it covers a 31.5mm diagonal sensor size. While the two lenses share many beneficial similarities, the PL 85-300’s longer focal length – 85-220mm at T2.9 and 300mm at T4.0, with 200-degree focus rotation – makes it ideal for shooting documentaries, nature and wildlife, and commercials. The entire range of Premier PL 4K+ cine lenses will also be at the booth. On display will be the 14.5-45mm T2.0, 18-85mm T2.0, 24-180mm T2.6, and 75-400 mm T2.8-T3.8.

The new XA99x8.4 UltraWide features a newly developed, patented image stabilization technology for the rock-steady performance critical for long-distance HD shots, making it ideal for producing live sports and entertainment events. Like other lenses in this product line, the XA99x8.4 comes with FUJINON’s DIGI POWER digital controls, offering high accuracy, flexibility and a host of production features. Additionally, high-resolution 16-bit encoders make the lens suitable for virtual, robotic, and digital signage, among other applications. FUJINON’s exclusive GO-TECHnology improves image resolution and reduces chromatic aberrations at all focal lengths. The XA99x is f1.7 to 341mm and f4.2 at 832mm with a zoom range of 99x, a focal length of 8.4 to 832mm, and MOD of 2.9m. Also on display will be the XA88x8.8 with an enhanced version of Precision Focus Assist, marking the first time this model has incorporated the technology.
Fans of Fujinon’s 1/3-inch EXCEED line can look forward to a new version of the 1/3-inch XT17sx4.5 lens, which features full remote control, for videoconferencing, weather cams, educational, and studio robotic applications. Other NAB highlights include lenses in the Premier Series of high-performance ENG lenses for 2/3-inch cameras: the HA19x7.4, the HA14x4.5 super wide angle and the HA16x6.3 lenses. The ZA Select Series lenses will also be on display in telephoto, remote control, and with and without 2X extender versions.

Have questions about these lenses or the NAB Show? Leave a comment here, on our Facebook page, or tweet us. We look forward to seeing you there!

Posted: 3/6/2013 10:57:00 AM by Thom Calabro | with 0 comments


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