World’s first-ever camera lens that captures video for immersive Virtual Reality: Canon is selling Dual Fisheye Lens for Stereo 3D 180° VR Capture in 8K for $2K

Canon Dual Fisheye VR Video Footage Recording Lens
A dedicated, single lens to capture 3D VR Video. Pic credit: Michel/Flickr

Canon is offering the world’s first camera lens that captures video footage for an immersive Virtual Reality experience. Viewers can consume the 3D VR content, captured using Canon RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens, through compatible VR headsets such as an Oculus Quest 2.

The equipment to capture videos for Virtual Reality isn’t cheap or simple. Canon is attempting to address both these hurdles to ensure content creators can bring immersive VR videos using a single video camera and lens.

The Canon RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens brings stereoscopic 3D Virtual Reality (VR) capture to the EOS R5 camera:

Canon U.S.A has introduced its first product designed to capture video footage for Virtual Reality. The EOS R5 camera can use the new RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens to record stereoscopic 3D VR videos.

Speaking about the new lens, specifically for shooting VR videos, Tatsuro “Tony” Kano, executive vice president and general manager of Canon U.S.A.’s Imaging Technologies & Communications Group, said:

“At Canon, we innovate so creators can push artistic boundaries. And this commitment to innovation is what led us to introduce the new RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens.”

“As Canon’s first entry into the world of virtual reality image capture, the EOS VR System represents an important milestone in our company’s rich history as a lens manufacturer and welcomes a bright future for VR content creation.”

“This new RF lens produces a stunning 8K virtual reality image and sets itself apart through its simplified workflow. Our goal is to make immersive storytelling more accessible for all.”

Canon engineered the RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye with high-quality L-series optics. The lens supports an interpupillary distance of 60 mm for delivery of 3D imagery in VR with natural parallax. Simply put, the new VR lens from Canon attempts to closely resemble human vision when users view the content through a compatible headset.

Specifications, features, benefits, price, and availability of Canon lens for VR video footage capture:

The new VR lens from Canon has a 190-degree field of view captured from two separate optical systems. The combined video footage aims to deliver content for 180-degree VR viewing platforms.

The dual fisheye design offers variable exposure control with a maximum aperture of a bright f/2.8 to a deep depth of field of f/16 with electronically-controlled apertures. There’s dust and water-resistant sealing and fluorine coating on the lens.

The lens should work with the Canon Camera Connect app and Canon’s EOS Utility program, after an update. Canon assures the update will also offer remote-control live view functionality for monitoring purposes while on the go.

The Canon RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens is part of the EOS VR System. The company is currently testing a new firmware for the EOS R5 camera. When the update releases, the EOS R5 should support this lens.

The camera should get new functions through the updated firmware specifically for shooting VR. Canon is also promising a software solution for conversion and processing.

The EOS VR System records left and right fisheye images to a single full-frame image sensor. This method addresses the main areas of concern in VR: stitching and synching.

Canon is reportedly developing two paid subscription-based software solutions. These will help complete the post-production process.

The Canon RF5.2 mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens will be available starting next month. The lens sports an MSRP of $1,999.00.

Shooting VR footage is quite complex. It involves two identical camera rigs. The technician has to precisely align the setup or else the end result can cause disorientation or discomfort. Canon’s lens promises to effectively eliminate these challenges.

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