Canon has made a stunning product announcement, revealing a twin, RF mount fisheye lens that is a part of an all-new system known as EOS VR. Its goal is nothing lower than to rework digital actuality (VR) and augmented actuality (AR) manufacturing by making workflow less complicated than present VR seize programs, whereas delivering the standard of a full-frame mirrorless digicam.
The important thing product is the $1,999 RF5.2mm F2.8 L Twin Fisheye guide lens designed particularly to mount on Canon’s 8K-capable EOS R5 digicam. It is a extremely uncommon trying product, to say the least, with two bulging fisheye lenses mounted aspect by aspect. They’re positioned roughly 60mm (24 inches) aside to match human interpupillary distance and supply comfy parallax for VR and AR.
The lens works solely with Canon’s EOS R5, chosen for its 8K video functionality. When taking pictures, it initiatives two round pictures onto the digicam’s 45-megapixel sensor. It helps 190-degree seize, permitting for supply of stereoscopic 180-degree 3D footage or images at as much as 8,192 x 4,096 (8K) decision for AR or VR purposes.
The lens has some uncommon options, like a hoop that focuses each lenses directly and an Allen screw adjustment that allows you to tweak the main focus of 1 lens to exactly match the opposite. In any other case, you get options sometimes present in high-end Canon L RF mount glass, like coatings to regulate flare and ghosting, mud and waterproof sealing and a strong F2.8 to F16 aperture vary. Regardless of the odd seems, the lens is pretty compact and never a lot bigger than Canon’s 35mm F1.8 lens.
The lens is only one a part of the equation, although. Canon is engaged on a firmware replace for the R5 with new options to help the lens and EOS VR system. That features MF peaking and guide focus affirm by way of Canon’s Twin Pixel autofocus system, together with a “Magic Window” UI that helps customers plan for supply to various kinds of headsets.
As well as, Canon made its personal EOS VR Utility and EOS VR Plugin apps, every out there by subscription for $5 per thirty days (with a free trial interval). The VR Utility app flips the stereo pictures left to proper and converts them from round to an “equirectangular” sq. picture that may be considered on a VR headset. It additionally affords fast modifying instruments like trimming of clips and utility of a LUT, whereas letting you alter to preset resolutions and file varieties (DPX, Professional Res, H264, and so forth.) previous to export.
There’s additionally the EOS VR plug-in for Adobe Premiere that “will convert the twin fisheye imagery to equirectangular, whereas permitting the power to chop, shade, and edit with the complete management of Premiere Professional,” Canon advised Engadget. It additionally enables you to export footage to the specified spec for various kinds of supply.
On high of these apps, you can use the present Digicam Join app and Canon’s EOS Utility to regulate seize. Each will probably be up to date down the street to supply “distant management stay view performance for monitoring functions whereas on-the-go,” Canon stated in a press launch.
The system can be utilized for weddings, journalism, sports activities, coaching, occasions and extra, whereas providing an a variety of benefits over present VR cameras. To begin with, it is designed to ship higher high quality than standalone VR cameras with smaller lenses and sensors just like the $5,000 Insta360 Professional 2. On the identical time, you get all of the R5’s instruments like log taking pictures, RAW seize, 10-bit video and extra. And whenever you’re not utilizing the VR lens, the R5 can be utilized for normal video manufacturing or picture shoots, not like devoted VR cameras.
On the identical, the manufacturing course of is less complicated and cheaper than with twin cameras utilized in higher-end productions. These cameras should be rigged, synced, targeted and positioned accurately, with the tip end result being two information in lots of circumstances. Canon’s EOS VR system, in contrast, delivers related high quality however affords focus and setup like a daily digicam, whereas leaving you with a single file to edit on the finish.
Your complete system is not precisely low-cost, contemplating you might want to pay $1,999 for the lens and $3,899 when you do not have already got an R5 digicam, for a complete of $5,898. Nonetheless, contemplating how area of interest and strange the lens is, it prices lower than I anticipated. There’s additionally the difficulty of R5 overheating that limits 8K recording occasions to twenty minutes, with a 10-minute restoration interval. You’ll be able to enhance that by capturing 8K to an exterior Ninja V+ RAW recorder, however that’ll add $1,500 to your value.
Nonetheless, it seems very promising for VR manufacturing, which has boomed in recognition through the COVID-19 pandemic (although nonetheless is not precisely mainstream). It has been particularly in-demand for enterprise coaching and collaboration, a probably wealthy vein for video producers. Plenty of these of us, particularly in the event that they have already got a Canon EOS R5, may be prepared to leap into VR work if Canon’s new system is as simple to make use of because it guarantees. The lens and EOS VR system are set to reach in late December 2021.All merchandise really helpful by Engadget are chosen by our editorial group, impartial of our guardian firm. A few of our tales embrace affiliate hyperlinks. If you happen to purchase one thing by way of one in all these hyperlinks, we might earn an affiliate fee.