WOODLAND HILLS, CA — Panavision (www.panavision.com) has revealed advanced new tools for its large-format Millennium DXL 8K camera at the Cine Gear Expo earlier this month in LA. The company debuted a set of fast, wirelessly controlled Primo Artiste lenses that cover the full 8K HDR image, an HDR OLED Primo Viewfinder, the new PX-Pro color spectrum filter and DXL Control — an iPhone app for remote camera control.
“The DXL was designed based on feedback from veteran filmmakers who wanted a large format digital system to serve their vision, and these new tools extend that level of innovation,” notes Panavision CEO Kim Snyder. “We are excited that the camera has been met with great enthusiasm for what it offers in terms of creative flexibility and progressive technology at the service of the artist.”
Featuring Panavision’s premier large format optics and modular accessories, advanced 8K sensor technology from Red and unique color science and workflow optimization from Light Iron, the Millennium DXL became available in January.
“Filmmakers have chosen the camera to shoot major motion pictures, commercials and TV shows,” says Panavision and Light Iron senior VP of innovation Michael Cioni. “We’ve been listening to filmmakers and developing top-notch capabilities for the camera, as well as fine-tuning what’s next for its ecosystem. These savvy tools continue our solution-focused efforts to deliver the best in class.”
According to Panavision, its new Primo Viewfinder is the industry’s first HDR OLED viewfinder.
Designed, engineered and manufactured at Panavision, the Primo Viewfinder offers Panavision optics and proprietary mechanics, an HDR OLED screen, 600-nit brightness, image smoothing, a heater and custom Panavision glass to limit eye fatigue and make it easier to focus in very bright or dark environments. The viewfinder also boasts a theoretical contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1. In creating the Primo Viewfinder, Panavision has made liberal use of customer feedback.
“We have been extremely transparent with our trusted customers and shown them iterations along the way,” explains Cioni. “Their fingerprints go into this camera, because it’s their hands that touch the buttons.”
Panavision also showcased a prototype of its PX-Pro color spectrum filter, which ushers in a significant increase in color separation and dramatically higher color precision. The filters provide an infrared (IR) and ultraviolet (UV) cut that improves color clarity and reduces noise and IR contamination, which can corrupt or distort digitally captured images.
The Primo Artiste lenses, available by the end of 2017, are a full series of T/1.8 Prime lenses. The Artiste Series becomes the second series of Panavision lenses to include a fully internalized motor and complete metadata compatibility. The essence of the Artiste concept is an innovative design that takes advantage of the aesthetic flexibility available within large format digital imagers, and the resulting look evokes a quality reminiscent of vintage optics. The Artiste lenses will initially come in eleven focal lengths (27mm, 35mm, 40mm, 50mm, 65mm, 80mm, 100mm, 125mm, 150mm, 200mm, and 250mm) with expanded focal lengths available in 2018.
New DXL Control software mirrors the camera menu system on the user’s Apple device, allowing wireless camera control. The software is available now with a DXL camera rental, and was available to download for free from the iTunes store, earlier this month.
Cine Gear attendees also had a chance to see Light Iron’s post production solutions on display in a theater via an HDR Video Village Cart showcasing 8K HDR DXL footage. Light Iron representatives demonstrated how the system helps cinematographers evaluate their images simultaneously in high dynamic range and standard, or low, dynamic range. Having access to both image specs while in production enables cinematographers to better prepare for post production color grading, given that distributors are frequently requiring both standard- and high-dynamic range deliverables. Light Iron colorists were also on hand to discuss the finishing process as well as “Light Iron Color,” which is the custom color science built into the DXL.