The FORBES70 Large Format Motion Camera is designed and individually built in England by Richard Gale Optics.  At the moment we offer the system (and a camera tech) for rental as a full package comprising the camera head, lenses, and all required equipment.  We can also undertake build of multiple units should this be necessary.       

With its enormous 68mm wide image pick-up area (17:9), FORBES70 allows directors of photography the ability to obtain the dramatic look of medium format motion picture at up to 50 frames per second.  With such a huge frame the full image circle of high end German lenses from DHW Fototechnik are harnessed to provide extremely wide fields of view, supremely refined optical resolution when used with apertures fully opened up, and as such the depth of field and three dimensionality typically only obtainable in the realms of large format still photography.   

Rather than compete with the likes of large format offerings from Vision Research, Arri or Panavision, - all of which are designed and priced to fulfil the needs of projects who's cgi, post-production, and resolution needs are far beyond the needs of independent film productions; Our goal instead was to devise a camera system who's primary purpose is to deliver, and in many cases surpass the aesthetic and the optical quality of traditional 65mm celluloid motion picture technologies while being accessible for projects that don't justify the rental costs of other options.  The camera spits out a solid 10bit 4:2:2 4096x2160 output via 12G-SDI.

FORBES70 is the perfect choice for creative DOP's who desire the expansive large format look and a striking visual signature for projects who's priorities lie closer to traditional artistic expression rather than towards post production and special effects.  

In order to obtain a true large format picture the internals of FORBES70 have been designed to relay the 68mm wide image pickup area through a custom designed internal optical pathway, and onto a high dynamic range (12.5 usable f-stops) global shutter cmos sensor of 4k resolution.  Outputting uncompressed data via 12G-SDI into an external recorder of your choice.  The actual optical resolution transmitted onto the cmos chip is infact much greater than 4K since the large format image pickup area roughly equates to around 60-80mpx.  Since the internal relay optics are capable of transmitting around 6-8k of optical resolution onto the internal sensor, the result is very similar to oversampling within the digital domain.



Lenses (Schneider Kreuznach / DHW Fototechnik):-

40mm/3.5 - Super Angulon - (equiv to 16mm/1.4 lens on s35mm)

50mm/2.8 - Super Angulon - (equiv to 20mm/1.2 lens on s35mm)

80mm/2 - Xenotar  - (equiv to 32mm/1.0 lens on s35mm)

90mm/4 - Makro Symmar  - (equiv to 35mm/1.8 lens on s35mm)

150mm/4 - Symmar  - (equiv to 60mm/1.8 lens on s35mm)

180mm/2.8 Tele Xenar  - (equiv to 72mm/1.2 lens on s35mm)

300mm/4 Tele Xenar  - (equiv to 120mm/1.8 lens on s35mm)

1.4x APO Tele Converter (1 f-stop light loss)


Additional lenses available -

Hasselblad 50mm/2.8, 80mm/2.8, 150mm/2.8, 110mm/2

X-ACT2 Technical / Bellows camera system


Native ISO of 800


*internal sensor is rated at 800iso.  at 0db gain mode the optical pathway provides zero light loss meaning light meters are accurate if set to 800iso and lens aperture is used for exposure.  f2.8 on FORBES70 is the same exposure as f2.8 on any camera set to 800iso.

internal relay optics can be set to +3db gain meaning the optical pathway creates a 'speed booster' effect and a gain of 1 stop, at the expense of a slight drop of optical resolution.  The 1 stop gain should only be called upon as a last resort when resolution is less important than noise levels in low light.  Conversely, the internal optics can be set from their base of 0db (optimal resolution) down to -9db providing up to 3 stops of ND internally.  Each increase in negative gain provides a very slight improvement in optical performance and edge to edge resolution meaning bright conditions such as vast daytime exteriors benefit moderately better resolution at the furthest edges of the frame.