Anamorphic no longer has to be super expensive. There are now some entry-level options from smartphone attachments, to lens adapters, to simply affordable lenses themselves. Sirui is one of those making these new anamorphic lenses that are bringing anamorphic capture to the masses. They already put out 24mm, 35mm and 50mm options and have just followed up with a 75mm f/1.8.
Filmmaker Tom Antos is checking out this “anamorphic revolution” and took a good look at Sirui’s latest offering. If you are looking for a complete set then this telephoto option is likely something you will want to put on your list.
Prior to these Sirui offerings, anamorphic was tough and expensive. Cinema lenses were extremely pricey and some of the adapters required things like dual focusing. These new APS-C lenses are designed to be affordable in the sub-$1,000 range and are available for most common mirrorless mounts. Being an entire set with matched looks is a huge advantage too.
The 75mm joins the line with the same 1.33x squeeze – you’ll want to make sure you have something for proper monitoring. This will take a 16:9 aspect ratio video and produce a final product of 2.4:1. It’s that cinema look.
Of course, anamorphic isn’t all about the squeeze. Bokeh has a unique oval look at many people are a fan of. The 13 aperture blades help keep it smooth and natural. Plus, you are getting those serious blue lens flares. Sirui’s can get to be too much, like all anamorphics, but Tom recommends a matte box to keep them under control. Secondary flares and light blooms also look quite beautiful.
Tom does report that Sirui has kept the optics quite sharp even with the anamorphic optics. Traditionally, sharpness and anamorphic aren’t usually so tied together. This 75mm when stopped down just 1 stop can produce images on par with conventional optics.
That f/1.8 aperture will help you realize a shallow depth of field and take full advantage of the anamorphic look. Just be careful with pulling focus as this lens is a manual focus only lens. Construction and build feels good though and operation is smooth. Also, keep in mind the minimum focus is around 4’, so tighter shots might be tough without some extra diopters. There is a standard 67mm front thread.
Overall, this seems like an insane value for what you are getting. Anamorphic for under $1,000 and not being a pain to use has me sold. I just wish it was full-frame, but maybe in the future we will get those lenses.
Have you picked up any of Sirui’s anamorphic offerings?
[source: Tom Antos]