A One Year Review of the RED Komodo

The RED Komodo is an interesting offering.  The Komodo is a Cinema camera, first and foremost, and one of the most affordable offerings from RED.  If you like the RED look you will likely satisfied by the Komodo and its crisp, 6k, raw image and its pleasant colors.  If you’re looking for a run-and-gun or a low light camera, look elsewhere.  We don’t think the sensor is as noisy as it’s made out to be as long as you expose with care which is a reasonable expectation of a cinema camera.  Our biggest complaint is how the highlights clip on this camera, as it happens a bit sooner than we would like, but that’s nothing we can’t work around.

Meike Announces the 75mm T2.1 Cine Lens (APS-C/Super 35)

Meike has released its third super 35 cine lens, the 75mm T2.1.  We are always happy to see more affordable cine lenses released as they are certainly suitable for some use cases.  These lenses are compact and a good value.  We hope Meike will continue to fill out their super 35 range with all of the usual suspects but we do know the current road-map includes 18mm, 25mm, 35mm, 50mm, 75mm, and 100mm all at T2.1.

Key specifications:

  • $599 price
  • 13 elements in 11 groups
  • 13 aperture blades
  • May cover some full frame sensors
  • EF or PL mount
  • 70cm minimum focusing distance
  • 77mm filter thread
  • T2.1
  • Available November 2021
  • 270-degrees focus rotation

New Leitz Elsie Cinema Primes

Leitz has announced a new series of full frame cinema lenses.  The set consists of 13 lenses with focal lengths from 15mm to 150mm.  Every lens in the set is at T2.1.


Relevant details:

  • Designed and produced in Germany
  • Has the “warmth and resolution that Leitz lenses are known for”
  • Intentional creation of a dimensional pop via a gradual falloff of resolution and illumination towards the corners
  • €19,000 per lens (roughly $22,000 USD but exact prices are not yet known)
  • Close focus of 1’2″ (0.35M) on most (all?) of the lenses
  • Weights of 5.3 and 4.4lbs have been reported
  • 95mm filter thread except on the 15mm, 18mm, and 21mm which lack filter threads and have a 114mm front diameter
  • 15 aperture blades
  • LPL mount
  • Initial 5 lenses of the set to become available in early 2022

And of particular interest is this statement from the company: “We believe that cameras with shallow flange depths and interchangeable mounts are the future of cinematography. Lens designs have always followed camera formats, and we expect other lens companies will follow our lead.”

TTArtisan 90mm F1.25 Lens Shot on the Sony A7S III

90mm F1.25 TTArtisan lens

This TTArtisan lens for Leica M mount (which is easily adaptable to mirrorless cameras) caught our eye because of its manual focus construction, very large aperture, and relatively low price.

Some of this lenses relevant specifications include:

  • 11 elements in 7 groups with 4 high index elements
  • Full frame coverage
  • 1 meter minimum focus distance
  • 2.23 lb or 1.01 kg weight
  • $769

The real question for us was how does it look and now we have a YouTube video shot on the Sony A7S III to show us:

Fujinon GFX 100 and GFX 100S to Get Blackmagic Raw (BRAW)

This is exciting news for owners of the Fujinon GFX 100 series owners. The 102MP, 43.8×32.9mm medium format CMOS sensor shared by both of these cameras provides a different look as compared to smaller sensors and may help set your film apart if the look suits your purposes. The GFX 100 has already been shooting ProRes RAW via the ATOMOS Ninja V recorder but BRAW will be very useful in some workflows and is a welcome edition. You will need the Blackmagic Video Assist recorder to record the BRAW.

External recording in Blackmagic RAW will be made available in October, 2021 via a firmware update.

Here is an example of the Fujifilm GFX100 and the Ninja V shooting in Pro Res Raw:

Chiopt EXTREMER: A Very Interesting, New Full Frame Cinema Lens

Chiopt Extremer Cinema Lens

Chiopt, a young Chinese lens manufacturing company, has recently announced and released images of a new, 3X zoom, 28-85mm T3.2 lens.  What makes this lens so interesting is:

  • It could be an affordable full frame cinema zoom lens, something that is lacking on the market (on the Chiopt website this lens is described as cost-effective but no pricing is provided)
  • Parfocal
  • Minimal lens breathing
  • Decent size and weight for a cinema lens of this zoom range (this lens weighs almost 6lbs)
  • 46mm image circle
  • Nice focus throw of 288 degrees
  • Minimum focusing distance of 1.3 inches (40cm)
  • 114mm front lens diameter
  • Both metric and imperial markings on the lens (on opposite sides)
  • User switchable mounts with PL/EF/E being available at the start and more to come
  • Rounded and natural bokeh
  • Adjustable back-focus

On paper this lens looks great.  However, this is a young company that has yet to prove themselves.  We’re glad to see them attempting something bold.  Let’s hope they can pull it off at a good price without sacrificing quality, reliability, or anything else significant to a degree that is not acceptable.  When we get some footage of this lens in action we will post it.

Visit the EXTREMER page on the Chiopt website for more information.

Chiopt Cinema Lens