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Posted on Monday, March 26, 2012


Superb HD Imaging with a 40x Zoom Ratio Ensures Crisp Detail and Tight Shots
 for Coaches, Spectators, and TV Audiences Viewing a Diverse Schedule of Collegiate Athletics
LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., March, 2012Clemson University’s busy sports program – which includes baseball, football, basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, and more – places heavy demands on the college’s Athletic Video Services Department for coverage of a full schedule of competitions. High-performance HD production equipment capable of multi-tasking for different sports assignments is a must at the department, which is why it has recently added the long-reach telephoto capabilities of the HJ40x14B portable HD Image Stabilizer lens from Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions.
“Everything at Clemson has a dual purpose,” explained Rick Bagby, director of Athletic Video Services, Clemson University Athletics Department. “Lenses need to work in the studio and for ENG assignments, and they need to be flexible enough to handle game coverage and production highlights, coaches’ videos, and in-game live production. We are a multi-use facility, and the Canon HJ40 lens fits right into that philosophy.”
Capable of extending to a remarkable 1120mm, the HJ40x14B is a highly telephoto portable EFP lens designed for capturing superb HD images over very considerable distances. Leveraging Canon’s world-leading optical and mechanical technologies, the HJ40 incorporates Canon’s proprietary Optical Shift Image Stabilizer (“Shift-IS”) system that makes possible the capture of rock-steady HD video under the most adverse of field conditions.
“Our football stadium seats 80,000 people,” Bagby noted. “Part of the fan experience today is when spectators see themselves on the jumbo-size stadium display. With the telephoto range of the HJ40, we can see parts of the stadium that we could never reach before, or get great tights shot on the field that used to be impossible. When you couple the HJ40’s zoom capability with its Shift-IS feature, it’s phenomenal. The Shift-IS feature is a must-have, and my testing showed that it makes a huge difference. With the extender on, I can read an 8 ½-by-11-inch piece of paper on a door a block away. All of this helps to improve the game-day experience of those 80,000 people in the seats.”
In addition to its highly telephoto and image-stabilization capabilities, the unique design-optimization strategies Canon employed on the HJ40 provide the lens with high optical specifications and superb HD image performance. High contrast is ensured by excellent control of black reproduction, with optical and mechanical design innovations that substantially reduce flare, veiling glare, and any internal reflections. Similar attention to the minimization of ghost images and other highlight-related chromatic distortions caused by strong light sources on-axis and off-axis further extend the operational contrast range of the lens and provide excellent sensitivity with flexibility for creative shooting.
“The crispness of what you shoot is essential, because coaches take this video and blow it up on a large projection screen,” Bagby stated. “Coaches want to be able to see certain things in their video, and if you record something substandard, you’re just blowing-up grainy images. That’s why the integrity of the imagery that the HJ40 captures is paramount in coaches’ videos.”
Zoom, focus, and iris control of the Canon HJ40x14B lens is highly intuitive via an ergonomically designed compact digital servo drive unit mounted to the lens at a 12.5 degree angle to comfortably accommodate the camera operator’s hand. Additional flexibility in controlling the HJ40 is provided by Canon’s Enhanced Digital Drive technology, which employs a microcomputer-driven servo control that enables operators to pre-set zoom-position memory and other user-defined settings for repeatable operation, if desired.
The Clemson Athletic Video Services Department’s acquisition of its new HJ40 lens brings the total number of Canon HD lenses in its inventory to ten. These include both portable zoom lenses and “box-style” long-field zooms. In addition to obtaining superior optical performance from these Canon products, Bagby also reports satisfaction with the company’s commitment to customer support.
“Sticking with Canon is important to us, because their service has been terrific,” he affirmed. “Our show goes on rain or shine. We’re constantly putting our lenses to the test in various weather conditions, and students are learning how to use this equipment on the job. Put those two factors together, and the need to have Canon’s level of support is obvious.”
“I’m as competitive as any coach or player in my job,” Bagby added. “I love to win. Being able to do great things with our productions, equipped with tools like Canon HD lenses, is how we do that.”