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.

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 benefits of an internal zoom for shooting handheld video with a gimbal are substantial. Gimbals can take time to balance, and when a lens with a typical telescoping zoom mechanism moves in and out, that balance is affected by the movement of the lens array. 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 destructively accomplished as camera manufacturers literally cut a camera in half to showcase its inner workings. Leica, Sony, Canon, and Nikon have in the past for demonstrative purposes.

This digital cross-section, however, is able to show off how a camera works without having to sacrifice any hardware and enables the mechanism to show the movement virtually, something that wouldn’t be possible with a physical cross-section. The result is a unique look at the fascinating internal workings of one of the most important tools in photography.