ZEISS Compact Prime CP.3 and CP.3 XD lenses
New ZEISS CP.3 XD Cine Lens Family: “Hollywood Technology for Everyone”
Via ZEISS Press:
The ten compact prime lenses provide metadata and enable the correction of distortion and shading. For the first time, even low-budget productions can employ visual effects.
OBERKOCHEN/Germany, 24/04/201: No matter if it is Star Wars, Harry Potter or Avatar: these days, just about every film features special effects. For many small film productions, having visual effects in their movie would be a dream come true. Unfortunately, making the image fit the look of the footage has required expensive tools – until now. At the NAB Show in Las Vegas, ZEISS presented new metadata technology that makes this possible: the company has equipped its new ZEISS CP.3 XD compact lens family with ZEISS eXtended Data.
ZEISS eXtended Data supports and enhances /i-Technology
What exactly is this? “ZEISS eXtended Data is the first metadata technology which stores the lens distortion and shading – for every single frame,” explains Christophe Casenave, Product Manager at ZEISS. “Moreover, all /i-Technology metadata are recorded, including the focus distance, aperture value and depth of field, which is supported by most cameras.” This makes the technology ideal for working with visual effects: by using the metadata, it just takes a few clicks to modify the image generated on the computer to fit the lens characteristics, and to then splice it together with the footage to create a realistic image. Distortion and shading can be corrected or even amplified in post-production.
“It used to be that only big blockbusters could take this approach,” says Casenave. “Cine lenses that provide metadata are relatively expensive and, up until now, distortion and shading had to be manually measured – a time-consuming and expensive process.” However, since ZEISS has incorporated the technology into its compact CP.3 XD cine lens family, low-budget productions can now take the same approach to creating their own special effects. “With ZEISS eXtended Data, we are offering Hollywood technology for everyone, providing small film teams with new creative opportunities.”
An end-to-end solution: cooperation with Ambient and Pomfort
With the ZEISS CP.3 XD, ZEISS not only offers the lenses with metadata, but has also given thought to storage and processing. It has teamed up with partners in the industry: the company Ambient has developed the MasterLockit Plus system together with ZEISS. It records all metadata along with a time code in case the technology is not supported by the camera. “This way truly everyone can work with ZEISS eXtended Data, no matter what equipment they use,” says Casenave.
Thanks to the cooperation with the software developer Pomfort, distortion and shading can be modified on the set in real-time using the Pomfort tool LiveGrade Pro. The film crew already gets a sense of what the final look will be during the shoot. The film clips and lens data can be consolidated and organized with Silverstack, Pomfort's file manager.
ZEISS plans to further expand the new metadata technology in the future. “Our customers will then be able to upgrade to the new version, making the CP.3 XD a long-term investment,” says Casenave.
Compact and light-weight
In addition to the metadata, filmmakers have even more reasons to get excited about the new lens family: the ten prime lenses between 15 and 135 millimeters cover full-frame. As is typical for ZEISS, the image has a clean, crisp look, and ZEISS says the image quality is excellent. “These lenses deliver outstanding results, even in light situations with a large dynamic range, i.e. highlights and shadows within the same scene,” says Casenave. The maximum speed of the seven focal lengths between 25 and 135 millimeters is T2.1, the 15, 18 and 21 millimeter lenses have a speed of T2.9. With a front diameter of 95 millimeters, the lenses are light-weight and compact. They are particularly well-suited for hand-held filming or shooting with gimbals, Steadicam or drones. ZEISS has also improved focusing: the manual focus is now noticeably smoother. According to ZEISS, it is comparable with the ZEISS Master Primes and can also be operated with a small motor. The focus rotation angle is 300°. The lenses are equipped with an interchangeable mount so that they can be used on almost any camera. In addition to the ZEISS CP.3 XD, there is also a version available without metadata: the ZEISS CP.3.
Price and availability
Initially, a limited number of ZEISS CP.3 XD and CP.3 lenses will be available at dealers.
Learn more about ZEISS CP.3 XD and CP.3 lenses.
Chemist – Artist – Architect
ZEISS Compact Prime CP.3 and CP.3 XD Lenses
Tailored for today’s cinema and beyond.
Digital technologies have transformed traditional filmmaking and refashioned the market. New and innovative technologies in both production and post-production have paved the way for a more versatile, cost effective and advanced workflow. The ZEISS CP.3 family is the latest contribution from ZEISS to support creative and progressive filmmaking with an affordable, future-proof and premium quality lens set.
The ZEISS CP.3 lenses offer the perfect combination of high image quality and reliable usability. They exhibit the clean, crisp characteristics ZEISS is known for, together with an interchangeable mount system and full-frame coverage.
The ZEISS CP.3 XD version features innovative and ground-breaking lens data technology to speed-up and simplify the workflow on set and in post-production.
The ZEISS eXtended Data is a unique technology which is based on the Technology and provides information about the lens’ distortion and shading characteristics in real time. With the ZEISS CP.3 XD lenses, even small productions on a limited budget gain access to the advanced techniques common in state-of-the-art, big budget films, commercials and television shows.
Learn more HERE.
(cover photo credit: snap from Zeiss Press)