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Atlas Orion Review

The Atlas Orion anamorphic lenses offer an affordable entry into the anamorphic lens market, initially making waves as a cost-effective alternative to higher-priced options like the Master series, which retails around $48,000. Priced at $8,999, the Atlas Orion primes have since been joined by other budget-friendly anamorphic lenses from brands such as Sirui and Vazen.

These lenses were tested using a Canon C500 MK II, which captures sharp 5.9K Canon Raw Light footage, making it an ideal camera to evaluate the cinematic capabilities of the Orion series. The Canon system's support for new anamorphic modes further enhances its utility for filmmakers exploring this format.

The Orion series lenses exhibit some of the common traits associated with anamorphic lenses, such as less sharpness compared to spherical lenses, unique bokeh, and distinctive flares. These optical characteristics are often sought after for their contribution to a film’s cinematic look.

The Orion lenses are available in both EF and PL mounts, which makes them perfect 

In technical terms, the Canon C500 MK II’s settings facilitate anamorphic shooting, accommodating the specific needs of these lenses. While some operational quirks, such as changes in display size in certain modes, require external monitors to manage, these are minor compared to the overall performance.

From a performance standpoint, the Orion lenses are sharpest between T2.8 and T5.6. They also demonstrate typical anamorphic characteristics like horizontal blue flares and mild fisheye distortion, which can be mitigated by adjusting camera placement or through post-production corrections.

Overall, the Atlas Orion anamorphic lenses provide filmmakers with a viable, budget-friendly option for achieving the anamorphic look, making them a solid choice for projects that desire a cinematic feel without the high cost of more premium lenses. Renting these lenses is also a practical option for those looking to use them on a project-by-project basis

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