Sigma Shows How the Internal Zoom of its New 16-28mm Lens Works

Sigma Cross Section

Sigma has shared a digital cross-section of its upcoming upcoming 16-28mm f/2. 8 lens that showcases the intricate internal focusing system in action.

Designed to operate within the delicate balance window of a handheld gimbal, the Sigma 16-28mm F2. 8 DG DN Contemporary lens keeps the zooming movement within the interior of the lens in order to keep the lens balanced along the entire focal length of the zoom range.

In a video posted to Twitter, Sigma shares a cross-section view of the upcoming lens that animates to show how the internal parts work together to control the zoom.

Take a look at the inner zoom of the new #SIGMA 16-28mm F2. 8 DG DN | Contemporary lens! This full-frame mirrorless lens is perfect for video editing on gimbals. #SIGMAContemporary #SIGMADGDN

— SIGMA America (@Sigma_Photo) June 14, 2022

The interior zoom design of the 16-28mm f/2. 8 lens keeps the center of gravity consistent while the zoom mechanism moves along the axis, which is helpful for gimbals to maintain and dampen out the camera shake while recording. Each group of lens elements also looks to move independently along their own separate zoom track, keeping the lens zoom smooth and steady while maintaining the balance point.

The advantages of using an internal zoom to shoot handheld video while attached to a gimbal is substantial. It can take some time for gimbals to balance. The lens array’s movement will affect the balance of a lens that has a typical zoom mechanism. The gimbal will then try to compensate for that shake based on the previous balance, however, rarely does it result in stable footage and the excess weight can often cause the gimbal’s motor to fail entirely.

Traditionally, cross-sections are dangerously achieved by camera makers who literally slice a camera in half so that they can show its internal workings. For demonstration purposes, Leica, Sony and Canon have done this in the past.

This digital cross-section shows how the camera functions without the need to use any hardware. It also allows the mechanism to demonstrate the movements virtually which is impossible with a traditional cross-section. This gives us a rare glimpse into the inner workings of photography’s most essential tool.