In case you hadn’t noticed, the industry is not done re-inventing the follow gear just yet. Canadian based Broken Anchor Design presents us with the ZERO on Kickstarter – the all universal, tool-less, seamless focus gear for stills lenses.
There are predominantly two types of follow focus gears made for still lenses, the slim ones that you buy per lens, and the large ones that you only buy a couple of and that can accommodate a wide selection of lenses.
ZERO falls into the second category, and the cool detail about Broken Anchor Design’s idea is that it is seamless – there no fixings around the edge to limit your focus throw.
Below is their Kickstarter video. Don’t worry if you haven’t got 5 minutes, skip to 2:11 for all the relevant info.
The ZERO universal focus gear uses an internal twist lock mechanism to grip lenses. Turning the lock will wind the fixings in until it reaches sufficient contact with your lens.
This makes it quick to use and universally fitting any lenses between the 60-90mm diameter range.
The outer, seamless perimeter allows continuous 360-degree rotation. Increasing the overall diameter of your lens to 125mm also means a reduction in gear ratio to extend the throw of your lens in conjunction with your follow focus.
Despite the added bulkiness of a larger lens gear like this, the latter point makes sense and is a common problem when adapting to video that many do not initially think of. Another solution can be buying a follow focus specifically geared for a shorter throw, but this can often be more expensive if you want to retain the option to use it on larger cinema lenses also.
The ZERO universal focus gear weighs 136g (0.29lbs), is made from aluminum and uses a standard 0.8 module gear pitch.
It seems Broken Anchor Design has placed pricing in accordance to this being your only focus gear required for all your lenses. Excluding the early bird reward for speedy backers, the ZERO will set you back about $300USD.
For more info on the ZERO focus gear, check out their Kickstarter page.