Introduced in January, the IRIX Cine 21mm T1.5 is now officially on the market. But can this wide-angle keep up with the big kids?
IRIX is an interesting lens company. The lenses are produced in Korea, with support from a Polish company, and the whole thing is based out of Switzerland.
Each of these countries has produced some solid engineering marvels, and the IRIX Cine line attempts to capture that pedigree. But does it succeed?
The IRIX Cine Line
With the recent addition of the 21mm T1.5, the entire IRIX Cine Lens set expands to six lenses, covering an interesting selection of focal lengths.
This includes an 11mm T4.3, a 15mm T2.6, the new 21mm T1.5, a 30mm T1.5, the 45mm T1.5, and the 150mm T3.0 Macro. Oddly enough, a traditional 50mm isn’t on this list. Since IRIX is still releasing new cine lenses, we might see an 85mm and 50mm bridging the gap between wide and telephoto.
Each lens has a 95mm front diameter and an 86mm filter thread. The only exception is the 11m, since the front lens element protrudes too far out. However, the 43.3mm image circle across the entire line makes these lenses a reliable option for full-frame shooters as well.
Another interesting aspect of these lenses that make them an attractive option is that they’re all available in seven different lens mounts. This includes L, EF, RF, Z, E, M43, L.
But what about the new kid on the block?
The IRIX Cine 21mm T1.5
We are so glad you asked. According to Duclos Lenses, the 21mm T1.5 is an original cinema lens design from IRIX with almost no distortion.
The 21mm also matches the other lenses in the cine line, both in dimensions and gear position, which is great for on-set efficiency. Here’s some more detailed information in a handy list.
IRIX 21mm T1.5 Specs
- 43.3mm Image Circle For Full Frame/Vista Vision
- Available in PL, EF, RF, Z, E, M43, L
- Min. Focus: 13.4”
- Front Diameter: 95mm
- Filter Thread: 86mm
- Weight: 2.43 lbs
- Price: $1,195 ($1,295 for PL Mount)
Should You Buy It?
The entire IRIX Cine line is currently available for $1,195 per lens, including the 21mm T1.5. (At least for the non-PL versions.)
With full-frame coverage, similar dimensions, and gear spacing, the IRIX line is an attractive option for creatives and owners/operators to consider. The compact and lightweight design along with the fast T-stops is also a tick in the "pro" column.
If you already own a lens in the IRIX Cine line, the 21mm is a no-brainer, but there are things to consider if you’re thinking about buying into the IRIX ecosystem.
Some cinematographers might miss vital focal lengths between the 45mm and 150mm. Those might come out in the future, but how long you’ll have to wait is unclear. On top of this, the 11mm T4.3 won’t take filters due to its protruding lens element.
Whatever your choice, make sure it’s the right tool for the job.