Tamron Introduces New 20-100mm F/1.6 Vari-Focal CCTV Lens

Tamron USA has announced a new addition to its extensive Vari-Focal lens line-up that covers the telephoto range. The new 1/3 20-100mm F/1.6 Aspherical Vari-Focal covers the telephoto range that is normally covered only by zooms, yet the zoom function that makes the lens more costly is not utilized in many installations. The new Tamron Vari-Focal is an efficient alternative from the point of view of both cost and size.

With a focal-length range that covers everything from moderate to super-long telephoto, a fast F/1.6 aperture that insures bright imaging even in dimly illuminated areas, and aspherical optics that provide outstanding image quality in a compact, lightweight package, Tamron's new 20-100mm F/1.6 for 1/3-inch CCD cameras is a significant new entry in the CCTV surveillance and security industry. Until now, security systems distributors, installers, and end users often use motorized zoom lenses just to get the reach they needed. Or they had to use shorter-focal-length lenses mounted on poles, a system that means greater installation costs for trenching and wiring, less convenient maintenance, and susceptibility to image-degrading vibration.

The Tamron 20-100mm F/1.6 eliminates all these problems, and provides far greater flexibility in security and surveillance installations than any previous lens in its class. A typical example would be a camera aimed at a parking lot gate for license plate identification. By allowing the camera to be mounted on a distant building wall or roof, this high-resolution super telephoto lets you achieve greater steadiness and stability plus easier camera maintenance and adjustment, all while capturing images of unparalleled clarity and definition. Also, being free to place the camera at a greater distance minimizes the need to conceal it in sensitive applications, and allows the camera to be mounted on a wall opposite the target area, giving a clear, direct shot of faces and other essential details. This latter capability is especially important at locations ranging from airports to casinos, where excessive camera-to-subject angles may prevent the camera from capturing critical information.

The 20-100mm Tamron F/1.6 Aspherical Vari-Focal covers an angle of 13.6 degress x 10.2 degrees (horizontal x vertical) at the 20mm setting, and 2.8 degrees x2.1 degrees at the 100mm setting, the latter being roughly equal to a 5-foot area at 100 feet on a 1/3-inch CCD.

According to Tom Lehrer, president of Alarm Products Distributors Worldwide, Inc. of Winter Park, Fla., a leading supplier of CCTV and home security equipment, the Tamron 20-100mm F/1.6 will have wide range of applications among his clients.

"The ability to get facial recognition at 50 yards or more is a great asset," says Lehrer. "You can have a less conspicuous, more stable installation on a house, garage or out-building. Also, the cost is a lot less than we've been paying for motorized zoom lenses when [we] didn't need the motorized feature."

Don Maxey, a CCTV specialist at Burtek Systems, Inc. of Toronto, Canada, is equally impressed with the Tamron 20-100mm specs.

"I believe this lens is an important new development for the security industry because it gives you the best possible reproduction and captures all the detail you need from a distance. The fact that the 20-100mm lets you mount the camera on distant buildings so you don't have to hide it in covert applications is a big plus. It also helps minimize camera shake as well as reducing labor costs for installation and maintenance. Most other long tele lenses for CCTV don't even get out to 100mm and the few that do are F/1.8 or slower. This lens not only provides a longer reach, but also a brighter viewing image. I think this is the lens my installers and clients will grab first in any long-range surveillance applications."

Joe Balistreri is the CEO of Vision Surveillance of Riverside, California, a leading systems integrator for casinos. "This new lens is going to be a big help when it comes to configuring and installing top quality surveillance systems for our clients, many of which are major casinos," says Balistreri. "With this lens you can get a tight shot of the tables even with the camera mounted on the typical high ceiling found in most casinos. And being able to read the pips on the cards from directly above is a tremendous asset for these guys in policing their operation. The 20-100 is also great for parking lot applications because it lets you mount the camera securely on a building and I.D. license plates from a great distance. I'm really excited about this new lens because it allows me so much greater flexibility in my installations."

The designers have even considered environmental impact by making a lens that is environmentally friendly in design: glass with no lead content was selected and lead-free solder is used to manufacture the lens. The 20-100mm lens features locking mechanisms built into each ring (focus, iris and zoom) and provide a built-in Slip Mount mechanism for precision installations. The locking mechanisms (iris, focus and zoom on the VM version; focus and zoom on the VG version) secure the position set by the installer will not change even when wind and vibration occur. Both models are compact and lightweight at 4-1/3 inches long and approximately 5-1/2 ounces, which also enhance their installation versatility.

The new lens joins Tamron's extensive line-up of Vari-Focal lenses for both daylight and IR light situations, including the following:

For color cameras
1/3 2.8-6mm F/1.4 Aspherical
1/3 2.8-12mm F/1.4 Aspherical
1/3 3.0-8mm F/1.0 Aspherical
1/3 5-50mm F/1.4 Aspherical
1/3 20-100mm F/1.6 Aspherical

For day/night and B&W cameras
1/3 2.8-11mm F/1.4 IR Aspherical
1/3 3.0-8mm F/1.0 IR Aspherical
1/3 10-40mm F/1.4 IR Aspherical
1/2 10-40mm F/1.4 IR Aspherical

The Tamron 20-100mm F/1.6 Aspherical Vari-Focal is scheduled to be available at the end of December 2004.


13VM20100AS / 13VG20100AS
Imager Size: 1/3 or 1/4
Focal Length: 20-100mm
Maximum Aperture: F/1.6
Minimum Aperture: F/360
Mount: CS
Angle of View: 
  Wide 13.6 - 10.2 degrees
  Tele 2.8 - 2.1 degrees
  Wide 10.2 - 7.6 degrees
  Tele 2.1 - 1.6 degrees

Focus: Manual w/lock
Zoom: Manual w/Lock
Iris: Manual w/Lock on Manual Iris lens, Auto on DC iris lens

Iris Types: Manual, DC Auto Iris