Master Anamorphic Lenses on Full-Frame: Quality and Considerations

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Master Anamorphic lenses, co-developed by ARRI and ZEISS, are known for their exceptional performance and ability to capture the coveted anamorphic look. However, a question arises: does using them on a full-frame camera result in major quality loss?

Key Features and Benefits:

  • Designed for Anamorphic Format: Master Anamorphic lenses utilize an internal squeeze factor (typically 1.3x or 1.4x) to capture a wider image area on the sensor. This compressed image is then stretched in post-production to achieve the desired 2.39:1 aspect ratio, characteristic of anamorphic cinematography.
  • Minimized Vignetting: Unlike some full-frame adapted anamorphic lenses, Master Anamorphics are specifically engineered to cover the full-frame sensor, reducing light falloff (vignetting) at the edges of the frame.
  • High Image Quality: Master Anamorphics inherit the exceptional image quality of the Master Prime series, known for their sharpness, color fidelity, and minimal focus breathing.

Addressing Quality Concerns:

  • Slight Cropping: Due to the anamorphic squeeze factor, a small portion of the image circle might be unused on a full-frame sensor. This translates to a minor effective focal length change compared to using the lens on a Super 35 sensor. However, this crop is often negligible and can be compensated for through framing adjustments.
  • Potential for Vignetting: While minimized, slight vignetting can still occur in the extreme corners of the frame, especially at wider apertures. This can usually be addressed during post-production color correction.

Conclusion:

Master Anamorphic lenses deliver stunning image quality and the true anamorphic experience even on full-frame cameras. While a minor crop and slight potential for corner vignetting exist, these are manageable factors.

Q&A:

  • Do I experience significant quality loss with Master Anamorphic lenses on full-frame?
    • No, the quality loss is minimal. You might encounter a slight effective focal length change due to cropping and potentially some corner vignetting, but these are manageable.

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