Thread: Supreme primes vs Atlas Anamorphics?

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  1. #1 Supreme primes vs Atlas Anamorphics? 
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    Besides the format and technical differences, any input on what one would choose?

    Do supremes look “more special” than Atlas (which sometimes don’t even look anamorphic in some shoots.)?

    Anything else I’m missing with the two different modern lenses?
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  2. #2  
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    These are incredibly different lenses. Anamorphic vs spherical to start. Just depends which you will shoot more and which your clients will want more. Atlas are very soft wide open, breathe heavily, lots of CA, soft to the edges; they are very much an “old” anamorphic. Supreme primes are a clean modern spherical. I am honestly quite disappointed with the supreme primes; I would (and did) take a set of Tokina Vista primes over them. The supremes appear to be milvus primes rehoused for Cine use. They breathe, they have CA, they don’t have much character. Pretty skin tones but otherwise unimpressive for the money. If they were in the price range of the Tokina, they would be more interesting. For the price, I would buy used master primes.
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  3. #3  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joel Voelker View Post
    These are incredibly different lenses. Anamorphic vs spherical to start. Just depends which you will shoot more and which your clients will want more. Atlas are very soft wide open, breathe heavily, lots of CA, soft to the edges; they are very much an “old” anamorphic. Supreme primes are a clean modern spherical. I am honestly quite disappointed with the supreme primes; I would (and did) take a set of Tokina Vista primes over them. The supremes appear to be milvus primes rehoused for Cine use. They breathe, they have CA, they don’t have much character. Pretty skin tones but otherwise unimpressive for the money. If they were in the price range of the Tokina, they would be more interesting. For the price, I would buy used master primes.
    Yes I understand spherical vs anamorphic, usually used the Cooke anas or master primes.

    Haven’t used either of these lenses and both are meh to some degree with me. Supremes definitely ‘pop’

    Anyone know WHERE Atlas are made? Supremes I imagine are Germany?

    Miley’s vs Otis lenses I did test, and Milvus did not hold a candle to Otis, though I know some may disagree. I would be shocked if it’s milvus glass since supreme frames that I’ve seen were so so sharp with no CA.
    Milvus had CA from simple overhead fluorescent behind plastic diffusion (in the camera shop).

    I love how clean the supremes look but sometimes magical but then anamorphic 40mm? Could maybe be no slouch either. Atlas seem to have a nicotine stain color to their footage though... :/ ?
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  4. #4  
    Senior Member Ignacio Aguilar's Avatar
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    Lens character produces a feel that is highly subjetive. I can only recommend you to test, test, and test the different sets that you want to compare.

    My two cents:

    Atlas Anamorphics are anamorphics on a budget, but really well made. Soft wide-open with quite CA, they perform much better when you use them at T3.2 or T4, like many other anamorphics. By T5.6, they are very sharp, some may even say too sharp. I wouldn't consider them or their look "old". As most anamorphics, they have different looks depending on your stop settings. They have nice flares and well controlled distortion and of course, they breathe.

    I quite like Zeiss Supremes too. They are fast, compact and full frame, but they are not Master Primes in terms of perfection. I would say this is the way the lenses have been designed by Zeiss, in order to avoid in some sense that perfectly clinical look of modern lenses on HD cameras. They have more character also than Ultra Primes. Somehow I can consider them updated T1.3 Superspeeds for the 21st Century and Full Frame sensors. I don't know if these share any design with still photo counterparts, but Zeiss could have made them perfect (such as their OTUS line) but decided against. For those who still feel they are too good, Zeiss has released an alternate series (Supreme "Radiance") more prone to imperfections such as flares, veiling, etc. Being Zeiss, being Full Frame, and good performers, they really look like a good investment, for a different market niche (the higher end) than Tokinas, Sigmas, etc. which are very nice, but affordable, cinema glass.
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  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Dease View Post
    Yes I understand spherical vs anamorphic, usually used the Cooke anas or master primes.

    Haven’t used either of these lenses and both are meh to some degree with me. Supremes definitely ‘pop’

    Anyone know WHERE Atlas are made? Supremes I imagine are Germany?

    Miley’s vs Otis lenses I did test, and Milvus did not hold a candle to Otis, though I know some may disagree. I would be shocked if it’s milvus glass since supreme frames that I’ve seen were so so sharp with no CA.
    Milvus had CA from simple overhead fluorescent behind plastic diffusion (in the camera shop).

    I love how clean the supremes look but sometimes magical but then anamorphic 40mm? Could maybe be no slouch either. Atlas seem to have a nicotine stain color to their footage though... :/ ?


    Supreme primes are opticaly identical to Milvus lenses. Which is not really what zeiss sell em as, with their sales talk like ”built from the ground up, new inproved none breathing design etc etc. Its Milvus lenses in possibly the most expansive rehouses you can get.

    To compare Milvus or Supremes with Atlas lenses is a bit like comparing downhill racing skies with a swallowtail powder snowboard with footstraps. You can make nice turns down the mountsin with both but the experience is very much different between the two.
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  6. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    Supreme primes are opticaly identical to Milvus lenses. Which is not really what zeiss sell em as, with their sales talk like ”built from the ground up, new inproved none breathing design etc etc. Its Milvus lenses in possibly the most expansive rehouses you can get.
    I would believe this, but what's your source on it? There are a lot more Supreme prime focal lengths for sure so only some of the designs overlap.
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    Senior Member Tom Gleeson's Avatar
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    While it is easy to believe some optical design is shared between the Supremes and Milvus lines it should be noted that the Supreme 15mm is T1.8, the 18mm T1.5 and the 21mm is T1.5. The equivalent Milvus lenses are all F2.8 and that is a big difference. The Milvus 25mm, 35mm and 50mm, 85mm do share a common stop with their Supreme counterparts. But the Milvus 135mm is F2 and the Supreme 135mm is T1.5. Also most importantly these focal lengths are unique to the Supreme line including a 29mm T1.5, 40mm T1.5, 60mm T1.5, 100mm T1.5, 150mm T1.8 and a 200mm T2.2. I don't believe its fair to characterise the Supremes as overpriced rehoused Milvus glass. If you only owned the middle focal lengths of 25mm, 35mm, 50mm and 85mm and you were tolerant of their "stills" mechanics they would be a good budget buy for an owner operator. The Supreme line is a complete cinema set with the mechanics that go with that. They may not be too some peoples taste but I would certainly not be dismissive.

    Going back to the original question Andrew you have to ask what do you want glass for? Is it for your own projects or do you rely on clients to pay the bills? Fast Spherical Full frame glass can be used on the vast majority of gigs. I LOVE anamorphic but not every client is going to go with anamorphic and sadly I do not shoot anamorphic as often as I would like. Bent glass is more a speciality and less a workhouse format. IMHO I would buy spherical and rent the whacky glass when needed.
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  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    Supreme primes are opticaly identical to Milvus lenses. Which is not really what zeiss sell em as, with their sales talk like ”built from the ground up, new inproved none breathing design etc etc. Its Milvus lenses in possibly the most expansive rehouses you can get.
    IMHO they don't look anything like Milvus lenses, i really don't see that being the case.

    I'm not a huge fan of Zeiss in terms of look but i do think the Supremes look totally different - bokeh, dof fall off and so on.

    I tried to google optical diagrams but i can't find any, so is there a source for this?

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  9. #9  
    I have seen 4 of them side by side and they are identical. And I got it confirmed from a few sources.

    But yes the SP is a biger line up with more lenses and faster in the wide end and in the longer end.
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  10. #10  
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    So what are the Arri DNA LF lenses?

    The 47mm is a Kodak Ektar, right? A few must be bespoke. But they admit these are in part rehoused.

    Of course we will never know for sure. Canon doesn't have a 20mm f1.4 EF but the rest of their range seems to be rehoused (but different coatings and apertures) so it could be four of them are the same. I'm convinced the 28mm Contax is not the same as the 28mm standard speed, but the 50mm Contarex is the same as the Mk1 standard speed. Contarex would be an interesting full frame set no one is using, the 35mm f2 Distagon seems excellent.

    Art Adams was dropping hints that a lot of today's expensive "bespoke" cinema lenses really aren't... there's a potential for such high mark up... why wouldn't manufacturers take advantage of market segmentation like this...
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