June 2024

Lens Aberrations and Tunable Optics

The cinematographer’s choice of lens significantly impacts the visual expression of the story being told. Generally speaking, the cinematographer chooses a lens for an entire project or on a scene-by-scene basis. In most cases, the characteristics of the lens are fixed, and if the cinematographer wants more or less character, they must switch to a different lens. One of the most exciting developments in modern lens design is the introduction of optics that have variable characteristics within a single lens — and this goes beyond the amount of aberration that can be reduced in many lenses by stopping down. Several companies now offer more malleable options, giving cinematographers a great deal of creative control within a single family of...more

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Jay Holben

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