Cooke Optics is a UK based company providing specialist camera lenses and technology for the film and broadcast industries. Though headquarters in Leicester, Cooke operate globally through over 60 distributors and agents. The company also has sales offices in USA and Asia.
Created in 1886, as T Cooke and Sons, a creator of telescopes, the company soon merged with Taylor-Hobson. Now branded as Cooke Optics, as Taylor-Hobson have now specialised in meteorological instruments, the company has, over the years been owned by Rank and Bell and Howell but is currently independent.
The company is associated with invention and ground breaking technology. The Triplet Lens, created and patented by H.Dennis Taylor in 1893 was so sturdy and portable it accompanied Shackleton to the Antarctic in 1914 and several Everest attempts in the 1920’s. The Cooke Series VIII was used by the RAF in WW1 and in the early 1930’s it was Cooke that dominated the early Hollywood silent film industry. Indeed Cooke invented the world’s first zoom lens for film in the mid 1930’s. By the mid 1950’s many of the 35mms camera lens available were created by Cooke.
In recent times Cooke has expanded its lens range to include 25mms -135mms with the Anamorphic series, 12 mms -300mms with the S4 I range and new HD, 3D and special mini format models to cater for all filming requirements.
In 2013 Cooke was awarded an Academy Award for Merit in Design and Development of film lenses over the last 100 years.