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History

Humble Beginnings

1989 – 1994

Founded by brothers Pete and Rich Abel in 1989, Abel Cine Tech, as it was then known, began as film camera repair outfit in Staten Island, NY. Pete and Rich worked at the bench, specializing in the repair of 16mm cameras from the innovative French manufacturer, Aaton.

Three years later Abel Cine Tech was tapped as the East Coast sales agent for the Aaton equipment line, while the factory-owned and operated Aaton des Autres, in Burbank, handled sales on the West Coast. Most of our first five years focused on building Super16 awareness and the Aaton market.

In 1993, a resurgence in the popularity of 16mm acquisition helped Abel Cine Tech expand to include a full-fledged sales division, which fueled our steady growth.

AATON and the Super16 Revolution

1995 – 1999

By the mid-nineties, Aaton and Super16 had taken strong hold of the independent and mid-level television market, thanks in large part to Aaton-driven technical innovations, such as in-camera timecode, the 800 ft film magazine and high quality color video assist.

At this time, Abel Cine Tech was a passionate voice for new technology, publishing Practical Guides on Super16 and AatonCode, as well as expanded XTRplus and XTRprod User Guides. By 1997, we were granted exclusive US reseller status for Aaton and Canon cine lenses. That was also the year our first office in Los Angeles opened, and we expanded our sales to additional product lines to complement Aaton camera packages.

A Paradigm Shift

2000 – 2004

The end of the nineties saw great innovation from Aaton, with the introduction of the Super16 mini-cam, A-Minima, but the crisis of September 11 brought a startling new reality, and a whole new way of thinking. With Panasonic’s launch of the VariCam in 2001, Abel was once again in the role of evangelist – this time, as a voice for HD acquisition.

By the end of 2004, with an increasing number of 24p video cameras being brought to market by Sony and Panasonic, Abel Cine Tech had evolved from a service company into a full-faceted sales and rental organization. Our move from the original Staten Island location to Manhattan opened the door for greater opportunity and rapid growth and development.

Maturity & Purpose

2005 – 2009

By 2005, we had matured into a sophisticated sales, rental and service organization. As we expanded our knowledge base and reach, the company brought on more product lines and championed new technologies to a widening audience.

We pioneered tapeless workflows in the film and broadcast markets and helped bring the Phantom HD high-speed camera, which was conceived in the industrial market by the manufacturer Vision Research, to its current place of prominence in the entertainment industry. Our roots in film and digital technology served us well, as digital cinema played an ever-increasing role in the production market.

This was also a period of great physical growth for the company, as the LA operation moved to a new state-of-the-art facility in 2006. Our nationwide sales presence was further enhanced with the acquisition of Fletcher Chicago’s Sales Division and the subsequent opening of our midwestern sales office in 2009.

A Trusted Voice

2010 – 2014

In 2011, we rebranded the company as AbelCine to reflect our broader scope and changing role in the industry, as demonstrated by the three new departments launched that year: Training, Integration and Engineering.

The first half of the decade saw large sensor technology gain momentum, fueled at the wide end of the market by Canon HDSLRs and at the high end by ARRI, RED and Sony. We built a deeper relationship with ARRI, becoming the first ALEXA reseller in the US, and offering ARRI Pro Camera Accessories and Lighting product lines.

We made a significant commitment to the sales and service of the high-end cinema optics required by large sensor cameras, becoming the North American authorized service center for Carl Zeiss. This meant acquiring some of the most precise optical calibration devices in the industry. We later added Authorized Service designations for Angenieux and Canon.

To keep pace with our wider scope, we expanded our New York and Burbank locations. Along with state-of-the-art service and rental facilities, and enlarged, interactive showrooms, our flagship locations now included ample room for our training and community activities.

New Horizons

2015 – Present

As higher resolution acquisition moved from emerging technology to an industry standard, we helped our clients navigate this transition by providing the right combination of knowledge, services and gear. By 2015, our product lines represent every significant choice in digital cinema, from ARRI, Canon, Panasonic, Phantom, RED and Sony.

In the summer of 2015, our Chicago facility moved into a new home on the lot at Cinespace Film Studios, where we quickly became an integral part of the local production community.

That same year, VR and 360 video began to make an impact on the industry, and we continued our long-time role of evaluating technology, educating clients, and providing access to the best professional tools and technology available. By 2016, we signed on as a Nokia OZO reseller, as well as a rental partner for the Jaunt ONE system.

2016 also marked an exciting new chapter in our history, as we opened our Development Center in Brooklyn's Industry City. This facility is currently home to our Product Development, Engineering, Integration and IT Development units, with further expansion to come in 2017.

In 2017, we launched our completely redesigned and reimagined website as part of our commitment to serving all our clients with the best tools and resources available to realize their vision.