RED Monstro Test: Xeen Lens vs. Canon Lens
- April 17, 2018
- Shane Hurlbut, ASC
The new Monstro 8K VV sensor from RED is a beast. It’s a huge sensor, not just in resolution, but in size. So, I wanted to know how well certain lenses covered this big of a sensor. The “VV” stands for Vista Vision which was a film format that ran horizontally through the gate exposing 8 perforations of film per frame, leaving the usable frame width size to 36mm. That’s basically “Full frame” as referred to in the still photography world. Or, what the Canon 5D’s shoot. Compare that against super 35mm, which has a much shorter frame width of 24.89. The Monstro 8K VV is actually 40.96mm wide, significantly wider than typical vista vision. So, now you’re cinema lenses have a much larger area to cover, and most don’t. So I put a couple of the most common lenses on the market to the test.
We put this test together to test the nature of distortion, skin tones, contrast, and sensor coverage of these lenses within a real-world scenario.
Some Notes and Observations About Xeen Lenses:
One clear difference is how the Canon lenses remind me of DSLRs, not of Cinema. And that look has gotten pretty tired. The Xeens seem to have a slightly more “dramatic” look.
The Xeen 14mm, 16mm, and 24mm cover up to 7K, which I’d like to remind you is actually closer to normal Vista Vision or “Full Frame”. The 20mm covers 8K easily and looks great. I’m not surprised either, because It’s one of their newer lenses and my personal favorite from the set. The 35mm, 50mm, 85mm and 135mm all cover 8K. That makes 8 lenses in the Xeen set! Hopefully they’ll make more too, like a 40mm or some macros?
I go more in-depth in comparing Xeen, Canon, Cooke, and Zeiss CP.2’s in my reviews with my Xeen 16mm Lens Overview, Xeen 20mm Lens Overview, Xeen Prime Lens Test 14mm-35mm Cinematography Education, Xeen Prime Lens Test 24mm, 50mm, 85mm Cinematography Education, and Xeen 135mm Lens Review.