Kinotehnik LCDVFE Electronic viewfinder

By Dan Chung

The new Kinotehnik LCDVFE on Canon 5D mkIII setup

It’s been a while coming but according to Kinotehnik’s CEO Tõnis Liivamägi the new LCDVFE will be on show at NAB2012 and on sale immediately thereafter. Like other EVFs on the market it is essentially a 3inch, 800×480 resolution HDMI display with a loupe attached. What the company claims is different is that it uses an Altera Cyclone processor to achieve low latency. We have not seen the EVF apart from a non working prototype shown at NAB2011 – so we’ll be sure to check it out at this year’s show. It will be very interesting to compare with the Zacuto, Cineroid and recently announced Alphatron EVF.

In the meantime we had a few questions for Mr Liivamägi. Here is what he had to say:

Dslrnewsshooter: When you say there is no latency have you timed it?
Tõnis Liivamägi: We have timed it but it depends on the framerate set in camera, and also on the imager-to-HDMI-pipeline. To make it short – it’s about 1 frame @ 30fps in most cases.

Dslrnewsshooter: Will there be a remote option for magnifying the EVF image?
Tõnis Liivamägi: Yes and you even have the option to assign up to 5 custom presets under your thumb, each of which can hold all the EVF settings configurable.You have also the ability to configure the EVF from the manager/sharing software so you can have your wery own but shareable presets just as you prefer :).

Dslrnewsshooter:  Will there be a HD-SDI version in the future?
Tõnis Liivamägi: Yes, there will be but we have to see if it will be based on 3″ ish LCD screen or on a small 720P OLED display (sub 1″) – the availability and pricing of the latter is currently on military level, even by Sony. We don’t want to reverse engineer a display without permission as it is not legal nor moral for a manufacturer to do. We will see how the sales of the current unit will be as we have the ability now to come up with new EVF products within 6 months.

The LCDVFE menu

Dslrnewsshooter: Do you have a list of cameras you have tested it on?
Tõnis Liivamägi: C300, F3, FS100, NEX, AF100, RED and the most of the DSLRs.
SD resolutions:  480p59.94, 480pH59.94, 480i59.94,480iH59.94, 576p50, 576pH50,576i50, 576iH50, DMT0659p59.94
HD resolutions:  720p50, 720p59.94, 720p60,1080PsF23.98, 1080p23.98,1080PsF24, 1080p24, 1080PsF25,1080p25, 1080PsF29.97,1080p29.97, 1080PsF30, 1080p30,1080i50, 1080i59.94 and 1080i60

As it is EDID compatible it can also support all the non-standard signals like any DVI signal for up to 1080p

Dslrnewsshooter: What power options are there for the EVF? Can it be run from a D-tap or 5DmkII battery?
Tõnis Liivamägi: It can run off D-Tap/barrel from 4 to 17 volts (cable included) or off 4 regular AA sized batteries (two quick-change cartridges included) and you can power it via USB port too if needed. LCDVFE also boasts an intelligent power management system with suspend and wake up on-signal, power shutoff after pre set time etc, all timings are configurable – this way you will save precious battery juice when in the field.

Dslrnewsshooter: Will you have international distributors/agents?  or do we have to buy direct from you only?
Tõnis Liivamägi: Most of our current distributors will carry the LCDVFE in more than 25 countries world wide.

Dslrnewsshooter: Anything else?
Tõnis Liivamägi: We also have most responsive audio metering available of any external HDMI monitor currently on the market, including ballistics and peak hold although unfortunately 5D MKIII doesn’t output audio while recording.

As the EVF is hardware based device the power-on time is also under 1.5seconds, often even less than that – I’m sure there is no other monitor/EVF out there with such a powerful hardware configuration yet it is the most power efficient one by consuming only 1.9W.

Here’s the press release from Kinotehnik:


Kinotehnik launches much anticipated universal Electronic Viewfinder LCDVFE at NAB 2012

(LAS VEGAS, NV, April 16-19 2012). – Kinotehnik, a Northern-European maker of photo and video accessories, is launching the much anticipated universal Electronic Viewfinder LCDVFE at NAB Show in Las Vegas. The Electronic Viewfinder, compatible with a wide range of cameras with HDMI signal output, allows the operator to hold or mount the camera in various positions, turning DSLR and other cameras into professional, convenient filming gear.

„After the success with our non-electronic viewfinder LCDVF, we identified a clear market demand to develop a reliable electronic system in addition to it, closely following the same principles that have proven to be crucial to the film-makers community: unparalleled design and usability, excellent feature set, durability and last but not least — justified pricing“, said Mr. Tõnis Liivamägi, CEO and founder of Kinotehnik. „We believe that high-end products should be identified by their characteristics, not merely by the price tag. There is not much point in starting a technological revolution when no-one can actually afford to join it“.

Nevertheless, LCDVFE boasts with many unique features such as powerful Altera Cyclone FPGA architecture enabling latency-free image processing, super-crisp 3-inch display with 800×480 resolution, focus and exposure assist features with extensive customisation options, 1:1 pixel zoom feature with positional recall, HDMI loop through and high-end optics including diopter correction to name but few.

MSRP of LCDVFE is set to be as low as $980 (excl. tax) and it will be on sale immediately after NAB.

Kinotehnik, founded in 2009 and headquartered in Tartu, Estonia, Northern-Europe, designs and develops photo and video accessories. The products are geared towards documentary filmmakers, journalists and small camera crews, requiring compact, yet rugged products.
For detailed information on the product, including specifications, features and images please go to

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Posted on March 14th, 2012 by admin | Category: DSLR video news, EVF |

4 responses to "Kinotehnik LCDVFE Electronic viewfinder"

  1. cls150 Says:
    March 14th, 2012 at 9:03 am

    the most interesting on this post is that wooden handle… do tell
    im assuming oled will be the norm within a year from now

  2. lunelson Says:
    March 14th, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    Yes, what is that wooden handle?!

  3. Dan Chung Says:
    March 14th, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    Wooden handle looks like part of a Movietube rig. There are several other wooden handles out there now. Check out and

  4. simard Says:
    March 17th, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    What an interesting product – looks like it could really work well!

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