Riding on the coat tails of Fujinon’s unprecedented success of their 19-90 PL Zoom, Canon has dropped a bombshell and announced their new 17-120 PL Zoom, both wider and longer.
Over the past year, I’ve personally seen a huge spike in the demand for compact zooms for reality TV, documentary work, live concerts and the like. The biggest obstacle has always been the limited range of the lens. Although Canon 17-120 doesn’t solve all the short comings it will, without doubt, become an industry standard in the above genres as the lenses become available.
Before you go out and buy a dozen (at an affordable $33,000), remember, we’ve been here before. The battle between Fujinon & Canon has been played out with the B4 2/3″ lenses for years. Each vendor outdoing the last by redesigning a new lens every year that’s just few millimeters wider and longer.
By Mark Ritchie
More info from Canon
|The CINE-SERVO 17-120mm T2.95 lens provides cinematographers and broadcast operations with a compact, lightweight design (only 6.4 lbs.) using Canon optical elements, while offering outstanding performance and reliability in professional shooting environments.The new lens is fully 4K-ready, with a high optical resolution and support for Super35mm large-format cameras. An 11-blade aperture diaphragm helps ensure an artistic and beautiful representation of out-of-focus areas (or “Bokeh”).
The lens also features a high 7x zoom magnification, wide focal length range of 17mm to 120mm, and a 180º smooth rotating focus ring. Acknowledging that broadcasters often need to control zoom, focus and iris/aperture in different ways than filmmakers, Canon has developed this zoom lens with full external servo control for drama, documentary and other broadcast productions.
The servo drive unit is compatible with industry-standard protocols for control from a number of lens controllers including Canon’s standard broadcast lens controllers (ZSD-300D/FPD-400D) and multiple industry standard cinema lens controllers. The drive unit can be easily removed for cinema-style shoots and can be easily re-attached without any manual re-alignment. A 16-bit metadata output enables connection to virtual studio systems.
Also available in EF mount, the lens can be converted at an authorized Canon service facility..