Dulens APO Mini Prime Overview
The Dulens APO Mini Primes cater to cinematographers in pursuit of that elusive vintage, low contrast appearance with distinct flares. However, they’re not compromised by the uncorrected visuals of vintage primes that cause chromatic aberrations. These mini primes come in a cinema housing with a non-extending, non-rotating front. Their long, smooth focus throw devoid of backlash makes them perfectly suited for top-tier productions. Ranking as the tiniest large format cine primes, they’re optimal for minor productions, drone shoots, gimbal work, and other scenarios where compact and lightweight camera configurations are crucial.
Every Dulens mini prime offers a vast image circle compatible with nearly all large format cameras, including the Red Monstro and Arri LF. Specifically, the 58mm and 85mm can accommodate the ARRI Alexa 65.
“APO” denotes apochromatic, a lens design superior in correcting chromatic and spherical aberrations compared to the more prevalent achromat lenses. The APO standard in Dulens’ mini primes isn’t derived from aspherical elements but a refined lens design reducing chromatic aberrations. Asphericals have shortcomings, notably the disliked ‘onion bokeh’. Dulens ensures a pronounced, clear bokeh. Thanks to a high iris blade count, bokeh remains circular even at t5.6 or t8.0, without undesired bokeh texture like onion rings.
The Dulens APO mini prime lineup includes 31mm, 43mm, 58mm, and 85mm. More lenses, like the 21mm, are forthcoming. Dulens is also exploring both wider and lengthier focal lengths, all keeping the same design philosophy. All optics are original, drawing inspiration from classic designs but reimagined using contemporary techniques, targeting reduced chromatic aberrations and enhanced MTF. These lenses maintain consistent contrast, color, and flare characteristics, making intercutting effortless.
- 85mm: 7 elements in 6 groups
- 58mm: 9 elements in 8 groups (double-Gauss)
- 43mm: 10 elements in 8 groups
- 31mm: features an advanced retrofocus design
The lenses utilize a novel “V or VL” coating. While many cinematographers favor uncoated lenses for their unique flare and fog/bloom attributes, such lenses can challenge lighting, reduce light transmission, and impact color accuracy. The V coating offers a desirable flare style without the transmission loss seen with white glass or uncoated lenses. The lens flares exhibit dynamic, multicolored patterns, unlike most modern coatings that produce monochromatic flares.
Interchangeable Lens Mount
At Gafpa, we ensure lens collimation. Nevertheless, discrepancies might arise due to misaligned camera mounts or other factors. We’ll guide users on adjustments with a tutorial; a lens spanner and screwdriver are all that’s needed. Lenses come with a PL mount, but user-replaceable EF mounts are available, needing just two minutes for swapping.
Lens Markings and Focus Gears
The Dulens APO Mini Prime boasts all-metal 0.8 pitch focus gears for both iris and focus. Despite their compact size, these lenses can be operated by follow focus motors using two rods. Even LPL to PL mounts on the Alexa don’t obstruct motor operation. Furthermore, there’s no need to specify lens marking preferences as both metric and imperial notations are present on the lens.