After years of being a much-talked about prototype, the 3D lens for Canon’s XL1 DV camera has made its way into a commercial product at last. According to the company the lens will ship in October – although it won’t be cheap. Canon lists a suggested retail price of $8,499 (around £7,000).
The lens is actually two lenses in one. It uses a high-speed shutter that swaps between two slightly offset images at 1/60 second intervals. This means that the camera can output two NTSC 30fps signals of each offset set of footage. The two signals can then be imported into stereoscopic software for editing. The announcement of a 25fps PAL version of the lens is expected soon.
The lens, which offers 3x optical zoom, also includes a triagulation unit to measure distances between the camera and any subject. This makes setting focus and angle of convergence much easier, according to Canon. This also helps with importing the footage into 3D applications.