TCS Renting Harris Savides Collection

The New York facility has added four 1930s-era Baltar lenses owned by Savides to its rental inventory. The lenses have been professionally rehoused by Zero Optik.

New York rental house Technological Cinevideo Services has added a unique set of four Bausch & Lomb Baltar lenses owned and used by the late Harris Savides, ASC to its rental inventory. 

The Harris Savides Collection comprises a 25mm (T2.8), a 35mm (T2.5), a 50mm (T2.8) and a 100mm (T2.5). On loan from Savides’ daughter, filmmaker and actress Sophia Savides, the lenses join TCS’ line of original Baltars, which include a 30mm (T2.5), a 40mm (T2.5), a 75mm (T2.5) and a 152mm (T2.8).

Savides primarily used the lenses, which were designed in the 1930s, on fashion commercials. They are not to be confused with the 1960s-era Super Baltars, which the cinematographer used on such features as Margot at the Wedding and Birth.

Whereas many lenses made in the same period varied with manufacturing from lens to lens, the original Baltars typically display a consistent look from lens to lens. Uniquely, the 25mm and 50mm in the Savides set are uncoated first-generation lenses, whereas the 35mm and 100mm have single-coated optics, just like later Baltars. All lenses have good sharpness and contrast, with the wide lenses showing gentle corner fall-off.

Savides’ Baltars have been professionally rehoused by Zero Optik. The modern rehousing gives each lens a consistent 95mm front diameter, expanded focus and iris scales, identical gear placement, bodies of aerospace aluminum and stainless-steel PL mounts.

Savides' feature credits included Milk, American Gangster, Zodiac, Greenberg, Finding Forrester, Gerry, The Game and Somewhere. He also shot dozens of music videos and commercials. He died in 2012.

For rental inquiries, email [email protected] or call (212) 247-6517.

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