Canon created a twin fisheye lens for a brand new VR video system

Canon created a dual fisheye lens for its new VR video system

Canon has made a shocking product announcement, revealing a twin, RF mount fisheye lens that is a part of an all-new system referred to as EOS VR. Its goal is nothing lower than to remodel 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 digital camera. 

The important thing product is the $1,999 RF5.2mm F2.8 L Twin Fisheye handbook lens designed particularly to mount on Canon’s 8K-capable EOS R5 digital camera. It is a extremely uncommon wanting 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 tasks two round photographs onto the digital camera’s 45-megapixel sensor. It helps 190-degree seize, permitting for supply of stereoscopic 180-degree 3D footage or photographs 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 without delay 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 manage flare and ghosting, mud and waterproof sealing and a stable F2.8 to F16 aperture vary. Regardless of the odd appears to be like, the lens is pretty compact and never a lot bigger than Canon’s 35mm F1.8 lens. 

Canon created a dual fisheye lens for its new VR video system


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 handbook focus verify through Canon’s Twin Pixel autofocus system, together with a “Magic Window” UI that helps customers plan for supply to several types of headsets.

As well as, Canon made its personal EOS VR Utility and EOS VR Plugin apps, every accessible by subscription for $5 per thirty days (with a free trial interval). The VR Utility app flips the stereo photographs left to proper and converts them from round to an “equirectangular” sq. picture that may be considered on a VR headset. It additionally presents fast enhancing instruments like trimming of clips and utility of a LUT, whereas letting you modify to preset resolutions and file sorts (DPX, Professional Res, H264, and many others.) 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 flexibility to chop, shade, and edit with the total management of Premiere Professional,” Canon instructed Engadget. It additionally permits you to export footage to the specified spec for several types of supply. 

On high of these apps, you can use the present Digicam Join app and Canon’s EOS Utility to manage 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 a number of benefits over present VR cameras. To start out 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 similar 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 photograph shoots, in contrast to devoted VR cameras. 

Canon created a dual fisheye lens for a new VR video system


On the similar, the manufacturing course of is easier and cheaper than with twin cameras utilized in higher-end productions. These cameras should be rigged, synced, targeted and positioned appropriately, with the tip consequence being two information in lots of instances. Canon’s EOS VR system, in contrast, delivers related high quality however presents focus and setup like a daily digital camera, whereas leaving you with a single file to edit on the finish. 

All the system is not precisely low-cost, contemplating you should pay $1,999 for the lens and $3,899 for those who do not have already got an R5 digital camera, for a complete of $5,898. Nevertheless, contemplating how area of interest and strange the lens is, it prices lower than I anticipated. There’s additionally the problem of R5 overheating that limits 8K recording instances to twenty minutes, with a 10-minute restoration interval. You possibly can enhance that by capturing 8K to an exterior Ninja V+ RAW recorder, however that’ll add $1,500 to your price.

Nonetheless, it appears to be like 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. Numerous these of us, particularly in the event that they have already got a Canon EOS R5, could be keen 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.

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