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Old July 5th, 2009, 07:57 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Chad Dyle View Post
I decided to buy the 50mm 1.2 and I was able to use it yesterday. I have to say that it is awesome in low light. The dof at 1.2 is pretty narrow though. It seems like a trade off that I'm willing to deal with though.

I love using the 5D, but my only problem right now is pulling focus (with any lens). The focus looks good on the camera, but later it isn't as sharp as I had thought. I have the Zacuto Z-finder coming in August, but I'm considering buying a small LCD to attach to the rig. I have an older Varizoom 7" (840x400), but it isn't that sharp. I was looking at a smaller Ikan monitor instead.
Chad, is the Varizoom what you are unhappy with for focus? I'm going to wait for the Z-Finder myself. With these type of lenses its easy to get it wrong simply because you can't see the image in high enough resolution.
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Old July 5th, 2009, 09:47 AM   #32
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The Varizoom was mainly used on my Glidecam. The resolution wasn't a factor for me when I was purchasing it (over a year ago). I wanted to use it for focus, but it really isn't sharp enough.
I have preordered the new Z-Finder, but that is still over a month away. It will be great for handheld stuff, but if I'm on a tripod, I would prefer a monitor. I was considering the 5.6" Ikan monitor. It has the same resolution 840x400, but being a bit smaller, I was thinking that it might be sharper. I saw the new one that just came out (SmallHD.com - 8.9" High Definition - the DP1), but it is a little big for my needs.
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Old July 6th, 2009, 06:55 PM   #33
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I love the look of the 50/1.2 with video, you can see a silly video I made here: Haiku Dinner Party on Vimeo
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Old July 6th, 2009, 07:06 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Chad Dyle View Post
The Varizoom was mainly used on my Glidecam. The resolution wasn't a factor for me when I was purchasing it (over a year ago). I wanted to use it for focus, but it really isn't sharp enough.
I have preordered the new Z-Finder, but that is still over a month away. It will be great for handheld stuff, but if I'm on a tripod, I would prefer a monitor. I was considering the 5.6" Ikan monitor. It has the same resolution 840x400, but being a bit smaller, I was thinking that it might be sharper. I saw the new one that just came out (SmallHD.com - 8.9" High Definition - the DP1), but it is a little big for my needs.
Yes, smaller monitors look sharper, but you gain no information (maybe lose some). You can get the same effect by standing further back from a larger monitor. It's all about the pixels.
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Old July 7th, 2009, 08:19 PM   #35
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The Sigma 50 1.4 is the best upscale normal lens choice for Canon. Do a search.
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Old July 27th, 2009, 02:35 AM   #36
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Since the Canon 50mm f1.2 is a $1350 lens, how does the Nikkor 50mm f1.2 compare? I'm aware you lose the autofocus ability and you'd have to use an adapter, but if you're only concerned with video and not stills... any thoughts? It's half the price.

In general, now that the manual firmware is out, does it make sense any longer to build a 5dMkII lens kit around Nikon glass (given the widespread availability of used manual Nikkor lenses)?

I'm coming at this from a background in narrative (frequently guerrilla) filmmaking, so I'm more concerned with good manual focusing action, aperture rings etc. than I am with the photo flipside. Searching the forums yields a lot of Nikon recommendations that were pre-manual firmware, and the 50mm is typically my workhorse lens so I wanted to build a kit around the fastest 50mm prime I can get.

Thanks for any thoughts,

R
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Old July 27th, 2009, 02:51 AM   #37
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Ryan,

I still think Nikon lenses make sense if you are on a budget or want to use manual focus for everything. While you do gain some extra controls from a Canon AF lens the benefit is limited and I for one still prefer a 'proper' aperture ring not a rear dial. That said some of the Canon L lenses are stunning, the 50mm f1.2L is one of them, the 35mm f1.4L, 24mm f1.4L II, 135mm f2L and 200m f2L IS are amazing too.

The Nikon 50mm f1.2 is pretty soft wide open , if you like that look then thats fine, otherwise on a budget go for something like the Voitlander 58 f1.4, a used Zeiss/Contax 50mm f1.4 or a manual Nikon 50mm f1.4

Dan
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Old July 28th, 2009, 11:17 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Chad Dyle View Post
Glen,

The stills from the video footage look great. How often do you find yourself shooting video at 1.2? It seems like getting the focus right would be difficult.
I have only had the chance to use the camera at 1 wedding so far. I was able to get the camera about two weeks ago. I don't even think I've taken pictures with all of the lenses I have so far.
My main concern is about pulling focus. I have a Varizoom 7" monitor that I plan on attaching to my rails for now. Its only 800x480, but I think it will do the trick. I was told that while you are recording, the camera outputs SD video, so anything higher wouldn't matter.
I was able to pick up a used 24mm 1.4 yesterday and from your pics, I'll probably go ahead and get the 50mm 1.2. I really appreciate all the help on this forum!
Sorry for the LATE reply! This entire shoot I stayed at 1.2, I rode the shutter to gain exposure in really bright areas. For the most part I try to keep it at 60 if possible though- and use a screw-on ND filter to squelch the blown highlights.

You will not be disappointed with this lens. I like it better than the legendary 85 1.2.

PS I'm glad I could help- be sure to post some of your work with the 50 1.2 when you get it!
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Old July 28th, 2009, 11:19 PM   #39
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What shutter speed were you using? There is very little motion blur, much less than you'd see with 1/50 or other normal video.
To be honest I'm not sure. I used the shutter to gain proper exposure while locking the iris at 1.2 for the entire shoot. Typically I don't like straying from 1/60th due to the increased stuttery look of high shutter speeds but slow action like a bridal prep it's not hard to get away with.
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Old July 29th, 2009, 12:53 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by Glen Elliott View Post
Sorry for the LATE reply! This entire shoot I stayed at 1.2, I rode the shutter to gain exposure in really bright areas. For the most part I try to keep it at 60 if possible though- and use a screw-on ND filter to squelch the blown highlights.
A variable ND filter would enable you to use 1/60 with F1.2. A 77mm Fader ND is only around $100.
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Old July 29th, 2009, 02:29 AM   #41
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The test report on Canon's first 50 mm f/1.2 was impressive, but they did point out that due to vignetting it was only f/1.2 in the centre of the frame, and noticeably down in the corners (about f/2). This is nothing against Canon, just the laws of optics coming into play.

Hasselblad (amongst others) have overcome this with centre-spot vari-ND filters, and I wonder if the latest Canon L series lenses have also found a way of evening up the exposure?

tom.
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Old July 29th, 2009, 06:42 PM   #42
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"Here are some video stills from a recent wedding I shot with the 50 1.2L"

It's hard to believe those are video stills. HDV is useless for video stills but these look nice and they are downsampled. I know 1080p stills are not suitable for print, but who prints anymore?. I think 2 megapixel stills from 5DII video can make great digital snapshots that might even stand the test of time even though computer monitors will likely increase in resolution tremendously in the next several years.
While I agree the stills from the native 1080p 5DmkII footage have an edge- here are a couple of stills from Canon XH-A1 footage (@ 1440x1080 HDV). I wouldn't say they aren't suitable video still or even print.



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Old July 29th, 2009, 06:46 PM   #43
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A variable ND filter would enable you to use 1/60 with F1.2. A 77mm Fader ND is only around $100.
I'll have to look into that! Does B&H carry them? What brands make these?
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Old July 29th, 2009, 08:45 PM   #44
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I'll have to look into that! Does B&H carry them? What brands make these?
There are two brands of variable ND filter on the market. The Singh-Ray that has been around for a while but is pricey at $400. Singh-Ray Filters: Vari-ND Variable Neutral Density Filter The new kid on the block & thus far only available from eBay retailers in China is the Fader ND at around $100 for the 77mm filter & $80 for the 72mm filter.

This is the guy that I got my Fader ND filters from. Delivery was within 7-10 days. He seems to be out of stock of the 77mm at present but I suggest sending an email to find out when he will have stock as he was very good with communication when I enquired previously. eBay Store - Light Craft Workshop: Recycle camera bag, C-PL, Loreo Lens in Cap

Philip Bloom has blogged about using these filters Philip Bloom Blog Archive Loving the Fader ND and Singh Ray Vari ND. Life savers in New Delhi!
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Old July 30th, 2009, 09:45 AM   #45
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I own the 50/1.4 and it's a fine lens for run n' gun shooting. At $1300 for the 1.2 version, you can get a 50/1.4 and a used 24/1.4 (version I) for the same amount... Think about that.. With the 1.2, you only get a half a stop more light and slightly better focus mechanism..
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