Hot on the heels of the Irix Cine 150mm T3.0 Macro 1:1 lens, Irix are now introducing its second cinema lens. The ultra-wide-angle Irix Cine 11mm T4.3 is designed to work with full-frame sensors and will be available in Canon EF, Sony E, Micro Four Thirds and Arri PL mounts.
The new manual focus lens is an adaptation of the 11mm f/4 Blackstone and 11mm f/4 Firefly that it already makes for Canon, Nikon and Pentax DSLRs - but uses 'a new optical formula, developed especially for cinematic purposes'.
There are 16 optical elements, of which four are made out of high refractive index (HR) glass, three others have aspherical surfaces and the last two are made with low-dispersion glass (ED). The lens offers a maximum T number of 4.3 which can be reduced to T22, thanks to the rounded iris blades. The The geared focusing ring rotates 180 degrees with a focus scale (with imperial or metric markings depending on the mount version).
What is a cine lens?
There are a number of key differences between a standard photo lens, and a cine lens (which Irix spells out in this blog post). These differences include:
1) Geared teeth on the lens housing
These are designed to be used with a follow focus attachment, that allows the camera operator to pull focus whilst recording smoothly from one subject to another.
2) De-clicked, manual aperture control
Cine lenses offer stepless adjustment of the iris diaphragm - and you are not limited to half-stop or third-stop adjustments as offered by most DSLRs and mirrorless cameras. This is because with video, you do not have the degree of control over shutter speed that you do with stills photography.
3) T number
As you can see from the name, the Irix 11mm Cine has no f/stop rating in its name, but instead has a T or Transmission value... in this case T4.3. The T value is based on actual light transmission to the sensor, and is a more accurate way of setting exposure when shooting video.
4) Long throw manual focus ring
The manual focus ring on this lens moves through a full 180 degrees - to allow for very precise manual focusing.
Price and availability
Announced at IBC 2019 in Amsterdam, the pricing and availability of the Irix 11mm Cine lens have yet to be announced.
The best cinema cameras in 2019