Canon has just announced a brand new lightweight servo lens. The Canon CN-E has a range of 18-80mm and T4.4. A great range, at an even more incredible price range of just over $5000.
A Canon servo lens bargain
Canon must have had a closer look at their lens market and might have just found a niche in untapped waters. With Canon Cine Zooms in the range of $40,000 – $60,000, and stills zoom lenses at $2000 benchmark, there was a big gap that needed to be filled. Particularly for cinematographers using Canon C100, C300, and C500, an affordable zoom lens that could be utilised for various filming styles is a major step forward.
The Canon CN-E 18-80mm is an EF Mount servo lens that covers both Super 35 and APS-C formats. It has a T-Stop of T4.4 (f4), which might not seem fast, but it is constant throughout the zoom range. Measuring 7.2″ long and weighing only 2.65 lb, this lens is designed to be a compact, lightweight solution for a variety of film genres, from narrative work to run-and-gun documentaries. The lens is also parfocal, which minimises focus breathing.
The Canon CN-E is equipped with a servo drive unit, which is compatible with industry-standard lens controllers, including Canon ZSD-300D and FPD-400D, for full zoom, focus, and iris control. Alternatively, the optional ZSG-C10 Control Grip can be used for ENG-style lens control and operation. The grip is powered by compatible cameras via the EF mount. For non-servo zoom control, the lens features cine-standard 0.8 mod gears, as well as a rubberised grip on the focus ring enabling comfortable manual operation.
The Canon CN-E 18-80mm Servo Zoom Lens has a built-in optical image stabilisation, something not often seen in cine lenses. The Compact-Servo also features autofocus compatibility with the EOS C300 Mark II and EOS C100 Mark II cameras. This lens has just been announced, so at this stage, we cannot judge on its optical performance. We hope to get our hands on it during NAB.
Canon CN-E 18-80mm Specs
- 18-80 mm zoom range, 4.4x ratio
- Maximum aperture: T4.4, equivalent to f/4.0
- No ramping of aperture throughout zoom range
- Close focus MOD: 0.5 m
- Optical image stabilization: On/Off and three levels of stabilization
- Iris: Auto/Manual
- Auto Focus / Manual Focus
- Power through lens mount or connector
- Filter thread: 77 mm threads for screw-in front filters
- Front outside diameter: 84 mm
- Weight: 2.6 lb / 1.2 kg
- Length: 7.2” / 182.3 mm
- Iris: 9 blades
- Servo handgrip: detachable with one screw
- Back focus adjustment under rear barrel
- Covers 31.4 mm image diagonal
- 20-pin connector for lens control and metadata: EIAJ RC5320A TYPE4 (5.5 mm diameter)
The Canon CN-E 18-80mm is priced at $5225 and is currently available on pre-order.