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What is this... thing?! And what's so special about it?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/887615-REG/Canon_xj100x9_3b_af_lo_XJ100X9_3B_Digital_Zoom_Lens.html

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    What is not clear to you in the description that is given in the link you provided? Oct 14 '13 at 8:59
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    This question appears to be off-topic because, as the description clearly says, this is for HDTV.
    – mattdm
    Oct 14 '13 at 14:25
  • What's special about it? How about "everything"? Given the specs, I'm amazed that it's so ridiculously cheap! May 14 '14 at 8:58
  • Not really off-topic: Sort of a duplicate of this fine question: photo.stackexchange.com/q/20081/27832
    – feetwet
    Sep 11 '14 at 21:40
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Basically it is so expensive because it is a professional lens for HDTV broadcast video with 100x zoom from 9.3mm out to 930mm (1860mm with a 2x extender) with an f-stop range from 1.7 to 9.4.

It is very hard to compare the specifications of this lens with lenses made for still photography.

From the first page in a search on Google: http://www.canon.com/bctv/products/digi100af.html

  • Extremely high focusing accuracy in full HDTV specifications
  • Ability to focus from a completely de-focused status without hunting
  • Ability to focus on a high speed moving object
  • Size and position of the AF frame (target area) in the camera
  • VF can be changed from the Focus Demand FDJ-P31/P41. (The size of the AF Frame can be changed in 3 steps)
  • Two operation modes (Full Time AF / Part Time AF) of the Auto Focus system is the answer to a professional camera operator’s various demands.
  • Ultra High Zoom ratio 100x
  • Ultra Telephoto 1860mm with 2x Ext
  • X-Elements & Power Optical System
  • Optical Shift Image Stabilaizer
  • CAFS (Constant Angle Focusing System)
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    "Canon's Tripple Digit Zoom Lens with Auto Focus Function" - all that money on a lens and they still can't spell "triple". :) Oct 14 '13 at 14:25
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    After spending all that money on the lens they had no cash left to pay a subeditor
    – NickM
    Oct 14 '13 at 14:31
  • Often a name is intentionally misspelled to make it usable as a trademark. You could not trademark "Triple" but you can with "Tripple(tm)" and now Canon can use "Tripple" across any wide range zoom specialty lenses they make to create a brand. Oct 14 '13 at 18:25
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    Yeah, but what's the bokeh like? Oct 15 '13 at 19:12
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Generally, cinema lenses (such as this) are much more expensive because the focus needs to remain constant when zooming. This is why the Cinema EOS lenses run in the $24k to $75k range. This is a higher end lens than the Cinema EOS lenses designed for production studio video use on really high end professional cameras and is a very versatile lens, thus very complex. (Long range of focal lengths while maintaining fixed focus during zoom.) Additionally, this lense provides the feature described as:

CAFS (Constant Angle Focusing System): 32-bit CPU calculates and controls the zoom when focusing to counteract breathing (phenomena where picture size/ angle of view changes when focusing) and has zero zoom effect.

which means that it can also account for the change in zoom when adjusting focus.

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