Canon announces compact dual fisheye lens for VR content creation: Digital Photography Review

Image: Canon

Canon has announced the new RF-S 3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye, an APS-C lens for VR (virtual reality) content production.

The compact, stereoscopic lens captures a 144º field of view and is the first non-L series lens to feature Canon’s Air Sphere Coating. Its optical formula consists of 11 elements in eight groups, including two UD glass elements. The interpupillary distance (the distance between the left and right lens centers) is 60mm, which approximates human vision.

This is the second VR lens for the RF mount. Canon previously announced the RF 5.2mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye, a VR mount for full-frame cameras. The new 3.9mm lens appears to be aimed primarily at social media creators, with Canon emphasizing the lens’ affordability and usability for creating vlog-style VR content.

The new lens works with the EOS R7, though a firmware update will be required.

Image: Canon

Canon has previously indicated its interest in the VR, AR (augmented reality) and XR (extended reality) markets. In fact, during an exclusive interview earlier this year in Japan, Canon executives told us they believe the company is uniquely positioned to provide production tools for these markets.

The APS-C lens is compatible with the Canon EOS R7 camera, though a firmware update will be required for compatibility with the new lens.

Pricing and availability

The RF-S 3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye has a suggested retail price of $1,099 and will be available in June

Press release:

Canon unveils the future of everyday VR content creation with new dual fisheye lens

MELVILLE, NY, June 10, 2024 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, has announced the new RF-S3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye lens, bringing ease, affordability and quality for social media creators interested in exploring VR content creation. The RF-S3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye lens is compatible with the EOS R7 camera* and will be
available in June 2024.

The new RF-S3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye lens makes VR content creation with a mirrorless camera more accessible and efficient than ever. Engineered to empower creators of all types, this lens offers a perfect balance between clarity and usability for vlog-style VR creation. This APS- C Stereoscopic VR lens’ ability to achieve a 144º wide-angle view and utilize equidistant projection makes it ideally suited for every day, virtually hassle-free VR production. Also designed for versatility, this lens permits multiple methods of camera handling, from hand-holding, mounting on a gimbal, or tripod-mounting. Canon’s available EOS VR Utility software (separately available with a paid subscription) is designed for a smooth editing process.

“The RF-S3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye lens offers a solution to the growing demand for more affordable and accessible tools in the VR market,” said Brian Mahar, senior vice president and general manager, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “Whether you’re a social creator looking to expand your content into VR, or a filmmaker interested in making the jump from 2D to 3D content, this lens enables creators of all levels to comfortably explore VR content creation and generate amazing content.”

Get to know the RF-S3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye lens:

  • One-shot AF and Left/Right focus Adjustment with Focus ring, helping to create effortless and precise shooting in virtually any environment.
  • An Air Sphere Coating (ASC) is a first for Canon non-L Series lenses and helps to minimize ghosting and facilitate pristine image quality.
  • Rear filter holder that accommodates both 30.5mm screw-on filters and sheet-type filters, i.e. gelatin or polyester filters.

Pricing and Availability

The Canon RF-S3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye lens is scheduled to be available in June 2024 for an estimated retail price of $1,099.00

Canon RF-S 3.9mm F3.5 STM Dual Fisheye specifications

Principal specifications
Lens type Prime lens
Max Format size APS-C / DX
Focal length 3.9 mm
Image stabilization No
Lens mount Canon RF
Maximum aperture F3.5
Minimum aperture F16
Aperture ring No
Number of diaphragm blades 7
Elements 11
Groups 8
Special elements / coatings Two UD glass elements
Minimum focus 0.20 m (7.87)
Maximum magnification 0.03×
Autofocus Yes
Motor type Stepper motor
Full time manual Yes
Focus method Internal
Distance scale No
DoF scale No
Weight 290 g (0.64 lb)
Diameter 112 mm (4.41)
Length 55 mm (2.15)
Filter thread 30.5 mm
Filter notes Supports 30.5mm screw-type filter (rear lens mount) or rear-mounted gelatin filter.
Hood supplied No
Tripod collar No

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