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Old October 15th, 2007, 02:24 PM   #1
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What kind of Lens for this Shot (picture)

http://www.tvbloggin.com/wp-content/.../04/caruso.jpg


What lens do i need to get the shot above? Im trying to find a lens (in Nikon photo lenses) that would give me that kind of out of focus background and in focus subject in a Medium shot like this (with M2 adapter)

Without an lens converter, as we know, there is no way to get this kind selective focus in a wide shot like this with ordinary DV/HDV cameras/. Here is another example bellow.

http://olympusdigitalschool.com/e-sy...746_header.jpg
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Old October 15th, 2007, 04:07 PM   #2
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There's a lot of separation between the subject and background, so it shouldn't be that hard to get. Any prime in the 50 to 85 range would be fine. If you needed to get wider, you would have to use a 1.4 lens wide open.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 04:08 PM   #3
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Medium range lens. Say maybe a 50 or 55mm and fast, not above a f1.8
wide open with ND filters for the sunlight is my first guess.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 12:14 PM   #4
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I would also guess that the 50mm at about f2.8 - f3.5 would do this for you because there is quite a bit of distance between the actor and background subject. It does not look too telephoto so I don't think it is the 85mm.

Last edited by Bob Hart; October 16th, 2007 at 12:16 PM. Reason: changed mind on last sentence so it is no more
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Old October 16th, 2007, 12:28 PM   #5
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I'm going to have to go ahead and disagree with you fellows on this one (shades of "Office Space" there). That looks like a good 100mm to me, there's a lot of compression between Caruso and the vehicle, and probably 10 feet between them. With a shallow aperture that would result in a very soft background but since this is a daylight image, it's reasonable to assume that it was taken at an f8 or more.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 07:46 PM   #6
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If he was going to be shooting it on a film camera, you're probably correct and I wouldn't think of even thinking about disagreeing with you. However you need to remember that most 35mm adapters are using 35mm still lenses and have an image area larger than s35mm. An 85mm still lens on an adapter by the time you zoom in past the soft/vignetted edges on many adapters, or as many people do zoom in to a s35 format, is going to be in the 100mm-120mm range.

Also, with DOF, the aerial image in most adapters adds quite a bit of DOF compared to what you would get if you were not using the adapter and resolving on the film plane. With the Brevis using the CF1 image element for example, I know that my 135/2.0 wide-open looks much more like the DOF i would get on a DSLR if I shot around 5.6. The added DOF depends on the diffusion of the imaging element. In general, the better the light transmission, the more added DOF.

Given how many variables are at play with an adapters image size, level of diffusion, vignetting, edge softness, zoom level, etc. ad nauseam, you kind of have to make a guess based on adapter use experience and not rely on what you know from DSLR/film experience.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 08:45 PM   #7
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EJ, I believe you have this backwards unless I am misunderstanding you. Given a comparison between 35mm still format and 35mm cine format, a 50mm lens will deliver a more telephoto field of view on the cine format. The image we are discussing is, in my mind an unquestionably telephoto image, and yes I was indeed defining it in 35mm cine terms (whether Super or standard 35mm is irrelevant since the frame is cropped square). However to achieve the same approximate frame in the still 35mm format you would need a LONGER, not shorter focal length. Even if your adaptor was zoomed in somewhat, it would still require a longer focal length to deliver the same field of view. In fact you would have to go well beyond a S35 frame to make a 50mm appear this telephoto, probably down into the S16 range (which of course would be the field-of-view equivalent of a 100mm in the S35 world).

<<An 85mm still lens on an adapter by the time you zoom in past the soft/vignetted edges on many adapters, or as many people do zoom in to a s35 format, is going to be in the 100mm-120mm range>>

Zooming the adaptor is not the same as zooming the lens, In your example, the 85mm lens when zoomed to the S35 format is still delivering an 85mm image--just in a different format. When zoomed out (as you may be able to without vignetting) to a larger format, you would need to INCREASE your focal length to duplicate this field of view.

The perspective compression visible in this particular image is to me indicative of a telephoto image, so I'm going to stick with my 100mm guess for the cine format, which if anything would be a wider frame on an adaptor that works from a 35mm still frame size.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 10:08 PM   #8
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Charles.

I bow to your judgement on reflection with a bit of a weak excuse offered.

The Caruso image might have been cropped from the right side for better final composition on the humans. The original framing for a widescreen frame might have incuded the nose of the vehicle. Maybe Tyson can comment on this possibility.

If it is a cropped image, then all my assumptions are wrong.

I am also a short sighted videographer, also red-green colour blind I am told although I don't believe it.

I have to constantly remind myself to bother to focus. I am also one of the statistical few who are both left-handed and left-eye dominant - what a mess, - the last sort of person you would want lens-monkeying for you.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 11:33 PM   #9
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When I say 'zoom' in on the adapter, what I mean is that the video camera lens is zooming in on a smaller portion of the ground glass of the DOF adapter. The image circle projected by the 35mm still lens onto the GG of the adapter is still frame size - 24mm x 36mm. When you zoom the video camera in on the GG image to approximate an S35 format, you're cropping the available image circle to a size close to that of S35.

Zooming in in on the GG reduces the field of view, and is just like the crop factor of smaller chip size DSLRs. An 85mm lens on Canon 30D is going to have the same field of view as a 135mm lens on a full frame Canon 1Ds.

Most adapters require some level of zooming to avoid GG vignetting or edge softness, so in most cases an 85mm still lens winds up the same FOV as a 100-135mm still lens.

Since you're talking 100mm on S35, an equivalent 35mm still lens would be a 150mm.

Clearly the cropped FOV has no bearing on perspective compression, so you would need a 135mm still lens for that, but you would then wind up with the FOV of a 180mm still lens.

I'll shut-up now.
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Old October 18th, 2007, 03:57 AM   #10
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EJ:

I understand what you are saying about the adaptors, perhaps I should explain that I have used them also (and I own a Mini35). What I was responding to initially was Tyson's question of what lens should be used to duplicate this still image, and several folks responded that it was a 50mm; you suggested between a 50 and an 85. My contention was and is that it would be at least a 100mm, and I think we have established that if that was to be a 100mm in the cine format, then it would likely be even longer given the still format used by most adaptors, or somewhere in between, allowing for the zoom to fill the frame. I can say with some certainty that a full-frame 50mm, which would be the equivalent of about a 35mm in the cine format, would not deliver this kind of telephoto compression. But then again I might be full of it, I'm starting to second-guess myself the more we talk about it.

Bob:

I think it's safe to assume that this still was cropped, otherwise it would have had to be taken by a medium-format camera which I have never seen on an episodic TV set other than for "gallery" work, where the actors are pulled aside and shot on a backdrop, as opposed to candids and production stills taken by the unit photographer on set as this appears to be. Most unit photographers are shooting full-frame digital these days, with a few still shooting 35mm film, generally in blimped housings. So the comparison in field of view/depth of field with adaptors using 35mm still lenses and near-full frame is actually an appropriate one.
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Old October 18th, 2007, 10:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Papert View Post
But then again I might be full of it, I'm starting to second-guess myself the more we talk about it.
Yeah, but I think most people would rely more on your doubtful second-guesses than most peoples 'facts'.

When I first looked at the image I was actually focusing more on the DOF since that seems to be the first concern of most adapter people. But you're right that the first image does look like it has more compression than an 85mm(still).
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Old October 18th, 2007, 12:55 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E.J. Sadler View Post
When I first looked at the image I was actually focusing more on the DOF since that seems to be the first concern of most adapter people.
More's the pity, E.J. There is a bit of bloodthirst that I have observed in many of the folk who are attracted to 35mm adaptors as they are exposed for the first time to shallow depth of field, a lot of the footage I have seen is all about "the shallower the better", and there are a lot of arbitrary rack focuses and distractingly soft backgrounds (yup, there is such a thing) in their early work, hopefully until the novelty wears off.

What I preach is that depth of field management should be simply one more tool in the tool box, along with all of the other decisions that are made within a single shot, such as focal length, camera height, distance to subject, framing options etc. Very often with interiors one has no choice but to shoot wide open due to light loss in the adaptor and a limited lighting package, but on a day exterior, the consideration of shooting stop becomes purely artistic (down to the point where the diffusion screen or groundglass becomes apparent). It is rare that I work on a feature or TV show that shoots anywhere near wide-open on day exteriors, as the super-shallow look is a rather stylized choice; yet I see a lot of this in people's work with these adaptors.

So what I'm getting in this instance is that one must do the detective work in the proper order. To duplicate the look of the CSI Miami image, the first thing I look at is the visual compression, which many in this thread felt was characteristic of a medium shot. While it may indeed be possible to duplicate the shallow depth of field seen here with a medium lens opened up on the iris, the shot will still have a very different feel. Once the proper focal length has been selected (along with distance to subject plus subject's distance to background), then one can rack through the iris on the lens until the depth of field is as desired. The exposure will vary of course, but it's fairly easy to look past this to evaluate the look of the background (and if your camera is placed on auto exposure, even easier). Then it's a matter of managing ND filters, shutter speed or iris control on the adaptor if present to get the right exposure for the shot.

Uber-long winded way of saying: when lining up a shot, lots of things to think about!
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Old October 18th, 2007, 06:26 PM   #13
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Zeiss 135mm - T1.9
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Old October 18th, 2007, 10:27 PM   #14
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I'd be using a 135mm, about 6 meters from Mr. Caruso at a fairly high f-stop as Charles observed. You won't have the light efficiency to get what you'd need beyond f8 though without some grain masking, even with a spinning adapter design. At the relative perspective of the background truck, no question that the lens is at a fairly high f stop. With adapters, the level of "blur" in the bokeh areas will vary, so the adapter has a large impact on the background/foreground apparent DOF.

Fun question!
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