Omega Broadcast Group Adds FUJINON Cabrio Lenses

Omega Broadcast Group, a video rental house in Austin, TX, has acquired five new FUJINON Cabrio PL Mount telephoto zoom lenses including four 19-90mm (ZK4.7×19) and one 85-300mm (ZK3.5×85) for 35mm and digital cinematography.

Prior to the arrival of the new lenses, Omega Broadcast Group wanted to show the Cabrio 19-90mm lens at its booth at the Austin tradeshow South by Southwest (SXSW), March 8-17, 2013. This was made possible by a “loaner lens,” arranged by Dave Waddell, South Central regional sales manager for the Optical Devices division, and Omega Broadcast received very positive feedback and social media buzz about its SXSW exhibit.

Since the lenses arrived in April 2013, Omega Broadcast has seen strong demand for rentals by its discriminating video production customers. The lenses, which are available for sale or rent, may be paired with Omega Broadcast’s Sony PMW-F5 CineAlta 2K Capable or PMW-F55 CineAlta 4K digital cinema cameras.

“As a rental house, we enjoy the flexibility these Cabrio lenses offer. Because they cover such wide focal ranges, they allow us to suggest Cabrios for most of our cinema camera rental packages,” says Gabe Proctor, rentals manager for Omega Broadcast Group. “With the versatility and range of these lenses, a director of photography (DP) can really reduce the number of lens changes during the course of a shoot, not to mention that there are fewer cases and shipping costs to weigh them down.”

The 19-90mm Cabrio Premier PL lens offers a T2.9 maximum aperture with 9 iris blades, while the 85-300mm PL Mount telephoto zoom lens offers a focal length of 85-218mm at T2.9 and 300mm at T4.0, both with 200-degree focus rotation. “Zoom lenses are suited to more production situations than primes. But the key thing is that, at each focal length, the performance of these Cabrio zoom lenses is very solid,” adds Philip Goetz, director of purchasing and E-commerce for Omega Broadcast. “This one zoom lens can replace prime lenses of varying focal lengths without quality compromises.”

Both lenses feature an exclusive detachable servo drive unit, making them suitable for use as a standard PL cine lens or an ENG-style lens, and both may be controlled using cinema industry standard wireless controllers as well as existing FUJINON wired and wireless units.

“Without the need for an externally powered zoom controller, I can imagine a much better outcome for a DP who chooses a Cabrio versus a non-servo Cooke or Arri lens to pair with a compatible camera like Sony’s F55,” Proctor says. “With the introduction of the new 85-300mm Cabrio, we have now begun to see more interest from photographers who wish to produce archival or large-format images for sporting events. Since these shooters can adjust Cabrio lenses so quickly, they’re able to concentrate on all of the game action unfolding live. Cabrios offer these clients all the comforts of an ENG type lens but delivered in a Super 35mm form factor.”

Proctor adds that the /i and LDS lens metadata contacts provided on Cabrio lenses offer a great way to archive important information about exposure and focal lengths with cameras that share these same features. But they also provide power to the built-in servo motors, which can be crucial on reality series and documentaries.

“Cabrio lenses offer a very low-distortion image and minimal breathing during focus effects,” Proctor says. “Considering how fast and lightweight these PL mount zoom lenses are, don’t be surprised to discover that an increasing amount of projects are being produced with 35mm and digital cinema cameras using these lenses.”