The College of Communication and Information at Florida State University, through its Seminole Productions subsidiary, is providing a real-world education for its production students with two HJ18ex28B super-telephoto portable HD zoom lenses from Canon.
Seminole Productions trains media and communications students in sports television production by having them operate cameras and perform other hands-on tasks. Adhering to deadlines and supervised by full-time, award-winning producers, students shoot FSU baseball, basketball and football games as well as studio productions telecast on a major statewide sports network.
Because of their long focal length settings, the Canon lenses are used to capture end zone and mid-level stadium angles. Most productions are shot in 720p60 for sports applications and occasionally in 1080i for corporate productions. Images are also displayed on the giant video display board in the school's Doak Campbell Stadium.
The 2/3in format Canon's HJ18ex28B super-telephoto portable HD zoom lens offers a focal-length range of 28mm to 500mm (1000mm with its built-in 2x extender), and has an optical speed of f2.8 up to a focal length of 286mm. The HJ18ex28B offers the longest focal length of any lens in its class, and yet weighs less than 6lbs (less than half the weight of comparable lenses) and requires no mechanical support system to mount to an HD camera.
The HJ18ex28B includes Canon's eDrive feature, which enables camera operators to pre-set focus, iris, and zoom position and speed settings, if desired. Inside the lens, design optimization strategies include high sensitivity, maximization of image contrast, and preservation of the highest MTF (modulation transfer function, essentially a measure of lens sharpness) over the long focal ranges.