New Oprema Jena Biotar 75mm-C cinema lens announced

The Oprema Jena Biotar 75mm-C cinema lens I reported about last week is now officially announced:

New Biotar 75-Cine Lens Will Hit the Sweet Spot for Film and Video Makers

(Koblenz, Germany) Oprema Jena is moving boldly into the world of cinematic lenses, announcing today that it will add the Biotar 75-C to its lineup, bringing the look and feel of the historic Biotar Cine lenses to 21st Century filmmaking.

This is the third classic Biotar lens that startup Oprema Jena is modernizing and bringing back to the market. The Biotar 75-C will join the Biotar 75/f1.5 and the Biotar 58/f2.0 in the current campaign on the crowd-funding site Indiegogo.

Indieogogo supporters will get the chance to pre-order the Biotar 75-C for $2,799 USD, about 44% off its expected retail price.

The Bitoar 75-C will offer film and video makers beautiful and natural focus transitions, authentic color rendition, swirly, creamy backgrounds with center sharpness that is typical for the Biotar lenses, which were originally produced in Jena, Germany by the Carl Zeiss company. In fact, the first Biotar lenses were cinema lenses and were designed in 1927 by the famous designer Willy Merté of Zeiss.

While the new Biotar 75-C pays homage to the historic Biotar lenses, it has been redesigned and reengineered with modern sensors in mind.

Offering a cine lens was a natural move for the Oprema team, which includes former award-winning Leica designer André de Winter, who was one of the lead designers of the Leica Summilux-C cine lenses. The Oprema team also includes, Dr. Stefan Immes, who runs the German lens company Meyer Optik, and Dr. Wolf Dieter Prenzel, a leading expert in the design and modernization of classic lenses. The Biotar 75 C will be made in Germany.

“One major plus point discovered during the mechanical design was that it has a long back- focal distance (from the last lens vertex to the image plane) making it ideal for a Cine version,” de Winter said. “With the interest in classic, iconic lenses nowadays to resurrect good, vintage lenses, the Biotar-C was born. The mechanical design uses the well proven 3 cams and 3 cam followers focus system for a smooth, backlash free operation.”

With DSLRs and mirrorless cameras being relied upon more and more for filmmaking, the distinction between cine lenses and photographic lenses is blurring. But for professionals filmmakers and serious amateurs, the cine lenses still have essential differences.

The focusing scale of the Biotar C lenses works in a Cam focusing mode and is loved by camera assistants around the world. It focuses gently, which allows smooth pulls without the unwanted sudden snaps of sharpness. The Biotar 75 C will be equipped with a P/L mount.

The Biotar 75-C will be relatively compact and weigh about 3.1 pounds. It will be ideal to work with stabilized rigs, aerial cinematography, underwater cinematography, and stereoscopic 3D. It will be available with the PL mount.

Some background information on the main designer of this cine lens, André de Winter:

André de Winter is a renowned lens designers who has worked  for famous German camera and lens manufacturer Leica. He started at Leitz Canada Ltd. in the design department in 1969, directly under Dr. Walter Mandler and Gerhard Bechmann. He became the major lens designer for most Leica-M (i.e. Noctilux in 1970), and Leica-R lenses. In 1987, he did the opto-mechanical design of 10 Panavision lenses. He transferred to Leica Camera AG in Solms in 1989, where he headed the opto-mechanical lens design department. He left Leica and returned to Canada in 1999 where he worked briefly for Leupold & Stevens in Oregon, USA. He returned to Leica in 2001, upon invitation of Lothar Kölsch, manager of the design department, and Alfred Hengst, manager of the Sportsoptic department. In 2007, upon request from Dr. Andreas Kaufmann, André worked for CW-Sonderoptic-Wetzlar, designing the mechanics for the new Summilux-C, (cine lenses) for which he received the Scientific And Engineering Award® of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (“the Technical Oscar”).

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