LockCircle has announced its newest product, the Prime Circle XE lens System, at this year’s National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) convention.
LockCircle, a still relatively unknown, but promising accessory manufacturer, is continuing its collaboration with Carl Zeiss optics, focusing with this new project on something that hasn’t really been covered yet in the film industry technology – remote aperture control.
Prime Circle XE system, aimed at filmmakers who want more control over the technical aspect
The set of 10 fixed lenses, ranging in aperture from 15mm to 135mm, feature design elements used in most cine-style equipment. Large focusing scales are present on both sides of the lens barrel, providing essential markers for precise maneuvering. The front mount has a width of 95mm, which is the usual size used for attaching filters. As for the actual mechanism, it’s made using optics from praised manufacturer Carl Zeiss, which has contributed to past LockCircle products.
Considering its expected high price, the Prime Circle XE lens set is meant to be used in high-budget productions, which employ at least one camera technician who handles lens settings, beside the cameraman. This is why critique about the usefulness of wireless aperture control has already started building up.
Nevertheless, we can assume that the system could successfully be used for fast action shots where the cameraman has too much going around him, in narrow spaces, or in the emerging field of drone cinematography, though a 300 feet wireless range is quite modest.
Prime Circle XE lenses can be attached on any EF mount Canon camera
Either way, LockCircle’s system will be achieving its future-oriented purpose with the use of two compact controller remotes. The first, the XE Controller, is dedicated solely to Canon EOS cameras. The second, the XE-Z Controller, allows connections to FZ and Micro Four Thirds mounts.
Both can be utilized for up to 18 hours of continuous shooting, the manufacturer claims. The company adds that the remotes will offer “LiveView on/off, focus function recalling wide open aperture for precise focus check and also start/stop rec…”
It sounds like a Google translation, but this quote is taken straight from the official press release. Unfortunately, LockCircle’s website is still playing catch up with the company’s new rising popularity, so details are scarce. We’ll just have to wait and see what these devices are capable of when they hit the testing stage.