ON A BUDGET: One fast prime or one not so fast (but more flexible) zoom? at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Alternative Imaging Methods

Alternative Imaging Methods
DV Info Net is the birthplace of all 35mm adapters.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old May 19th, 2008, 09:15 AM   #1
Tourist
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Montevideo, Uruguay
Posts: 3
ON A BUDGET: One fast prime or one not so fast (but more flexible) zoom?

Ok,
After having done a few small time projects, I'm finally filming a short fiction by the end of the year.

I have my lovely HV20, a Rode VideoMic, a boompole (well, in fact it's a painters pole that I adapted for holding the mic), a decent tripod and fluid head (manfrotto), a sound recorder, and AN ALMOST FINISHED SCRIPT!!! All of the action happens during the daytime, and I have a mixed bag of outdoors/indoors scenes in my script. Some of my shots will be in small places (elevators, rooms), other in big, spacious landscapes (beaches, highways).

My next step is to make a DIY static gg dof adapter (EOS mount), and then I'll need some lenses.

I already have a lovely fast Canon EF 50mm f/1.8. I have budget to buy one more lens, and I'm torn about what to get. I could afford a fast tele prime, a fast wide angle prime, or a slightly slower zoom. My candidates are:

FAST WIDE ANGLE

Sigma 30mm f/1.4 EX DC HSM Lens for Canon Digital SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Sigma-30mm-Can...051 44&sr=8-5

OR

Canon EF 28mm f/1.8 USM Wide Angle Lens for Canon SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Canon-28mm-Wid...048 62&sr=8-3

OR

Canon EF 35mm f/2 Wide Angle Lens for Canon SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Canon-35mm-Wid...04736& sr=8-1

OR

Sigma 20mm f/1.8 EX DG RF Aspherical Wide Angle Lens for Canon Digital SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Sigma-Aspheric...050 14&sr=8-7

OR

FAST TELE PRIME

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Telephoto Lens for Canon SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Canon-85mm-Tel... VHJ38M4D43DT

OR

SLIGHTLY SLOWER ZOOM

Tamron Autofocus 28-75mm f2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) for Canon SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Tamron-Autofoc... VHJ38M4D43DT

Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro Aspherical Large Aperture Standard Zoom Lens for Canon SLR Cameras
http://www.amazon.com/Sigma-24-70mm-...V HJ38M4D43DT

The zooms are really tempting, because I could cover quite a lot of ground with them, but I don't really know how well they'll work with a static GG. As far as I know, the DOF adapter eats a lot of light, and some people say that anything slower than f/2.8 shows a lot of the grain of the ground glass.

What are your experiences and what would you recommend? What would be more important as a second lens, a wide angle or a tele? Would the zooms do it? (I HOPE SO)

THANKSSSS!!!
Nicolas Raddatz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 19th, 2008, 09:06 PM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 276
Images: 2
I have no idea since you are making a static DOF adapter what you need to look out for but I love the wide primes for my LEX but I know Philip Bloom is using a Tamron... I THINK 17-35 that he really loves that is around a 2.0. I'd avoid the zooms myself, especially if they drop off as you push through them. I know Tamron has a couple that are the same app the whole way through and people really seem to like them but I'd still pick primes first.
Jeremy Hughes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 19th, 2008, 10:25 PM   #3
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Efland NC, USA
Posts: 2,315
Its a tough choice. My thoughts are this.. buy the lens with the best resale value. At the end of your project you can sell the lens and get most of your investment back to use as needed.

IF you are going to get a zoom I would highly recommend the Canon EF24-70F2.8L. I personally own this lens and it is super sharp, the aperture is constant, AND most of all its a parfocal design. Regardless of which lens you choose if you get a zoom make sure it is parfocal. The resale on this lens is excellent.
__________________
http://www.LandYachtMedia.com
Chris Medico is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 20th, 2008, 01:48 AM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,222
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremy Hughes View Post
I have no idea since you are making a static DOF adapter what you need to look out for but I love the wide primes for my LEX but I know Philip Bloom is using a Tamron... I THINK 17-35 that he really loves that is around a 2.0. I'd avoid the zooms myself, especially if they drop off as you push through them. I know Tamron has a couple that are the same app the whole way through and people really seem to like them but I'd still pick primes first.
There aren't any 35mm f/2 zooms. The f/2.8 zooms don't "drop off" as you zoom in as they operate at a constant f/2.8. Nikon makes a great 17-35mm f/2.8 zoom. Note that most zooms except the most recent Nikon releases (17-55DX, 24-70mm) are not as sharp as most of the fast primes at f/2.8, which is where you'll want to be for shallow DOF. Won't a lot of the Nikon DX lenses have a smaller image circle? I haven't tried my DX lenses as they don't offer an aperture ring, but I suppose I could just tape the aperture control open and guess.

Well, I'm off topic as the original poster wanted Canon lenses. I can only comment on Nikon lenses as that is what I have. I'm rearing to try the RedRock M2 + 400mm f/2.8 on wildlife as soon as I have a chance to go out.


I think you'll be happier with a fast Nikon prime than a zoom due to the sharpness and shallowed DOF. The 35mm f/2 and 50mm f/1.8 aren't very expensive.

Last edited by Gints Klimanis; May 20th, 2008 at 11:40 AM.
Gints Klimanis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 20th, 2008, 09:24 AM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 276
Images: 2
You're right Gints, my bad!
Jeremy Hughes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 21st, 2008, 05:55 PM   #6
Tourist
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Montevideo, Uruguay
Posts: 3
My budget is soooo tight

@Jeremy
At 17-35, all I can find in tamron line is a zoom that's 2.8-4.0, not vert good. Then, there's a tamron that has constant aperture it's the Tamron Autofocus 28-75mm f2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) which I mention as a possible purchase.

@Chris
Surely the canon zoom you mention seems sweet, but its waaaaay out of my league at the moment, it costs almost 4x what I'm willing to spend. As for the resale value, I intend to keep the lens afterwards, because i expect to keep on doing stuff, and I plan on using the lens on my Canon DSLR. How do I know if a zoom is parfocal? Is the tamron I mention parfocal? And...what does it mean that a zoom is parfocal anyway?

@Gints
Yeah, I'm starting to think I'll be better served with fast (f/1.8) primes. It's just that my budget is soooo tight that it kills me to buy primes...If I go that route I won't be able to have a decent tele and a decent wide angle for my short...it will be one or the other...

THANKS A LOT GUYS, and please, keep your comments coming!

Last edited by Nicolas Raddatz; May 21st, 2008 at 05:58 PM. Reason: Title
Nicolas Raddatz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 21st, 2008, 06:04 PM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Efland NC, USA
Posts: 2,315
Hi Nicolas,

You can see the list here:

http://www.rogercavanagh.com/helpinfo/30_parfocal.stm

Chris
__________________
http://www.LandYachtMedia.com
Chris Medico is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30th, 2008, 03:54 AM   #8
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: London UK
Posts: 1,939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremy Hughes View Post
I have no idea since you are making a static DOF adapter what you need to look out for but I love the wide primes for my LEX but I know Philip Bloom is using a Tamron... I THINK 17-35 that he really loves that is around a 2.0. I'd avoid the zooms myself, especially if they drop off as you push through them. I know Tamron has a couple that are the same app the whole way through and people really seem to like them but I'd still pick primes first.
it's a nikon 17-35mm f2.8, i got it cheap as the auto focus was broken. It's an expensive lens normally but a superb one
__________________
Philip Bloom
Cinematographer, Director, Filmmaker www.philipbloom.net
Phil Bloom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30th, 2008, 03:58 AM   #9
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Wales
Posts: 2,130
Check out www.photozone.de for lens reviews. They have detailed sections including Chromatic Abberations which can help your choice.
Steve
Steve Phillipps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30th, 2008, 04:15 AM   #10
Trustee
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: London UK
Posts: 1,939
I have written about what lenses I use and why here:

http://www.hostingphpbb.com/forum/vi...um=philipbloom
__________________
Philip Bloom
Cinematographer, Director, Filmmaker www.philipbloom.net
Phil Bloom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30th, 2008, 02:34 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 916
For zooms, I'd take a serious look at these Nikon zoom lenses. All have manual aperture rings and constant aperture. The 35-70mm f2.8d is the only one that does not have 100% internal focussing/zooming (the lens stays the same length) which is a great feature on the 17-35mm and 80-200mm. For mattebox use, this is really handy. The 35-70 has a push-pull zoom which is a pain when using a mattebox out front.

17-35mm f2.8d
35-70mm f2.8d
80-200 f2.8d

We've tested all of the these regarding corner to corner edge sharpness on our DSC labs charts, and all are very sharp wide open.
Dennis Wood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 30th, 2008, 03:00 PM   #12
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Zagreb, Croatia
Posts: 171
Working with zooms are more practical and time saving. I have sigma 24-70 EX DG macro. This is better lens then any of primes that I have (old nikon lenses). This one is sharper, color is much better then on my primes, when you are focusing sigma breaths only very little (almost none comparing to old primes), its great for run and gun (but to heavy for light stabilizer work, and thats why we keep our primes, and 50 f1.4 for "low light"). New sigma costs less then set of good primes. Only drawback is it has moving front barrel so you cant use fixed Mattebox. If you have Nikon/canon digital photo you will have great lens for it too. There is also a sigma 70-200 2.8 EX DG but this is heavy(and costly) beast (and this one has fixed length barrel).

PS
Why static DOF adapter? Instead of DIY static one, buy or make vibrating one and some cheaper prime, this will improve your picture more then any good lens.
Igor Babic is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Alternative Imaging Methods

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:23 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network