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-   -   XL2 with Nikon Primes! (http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/canon-xl-gl-series-dv-camcorders/103047-xl2-nikon-primes.html)

Paul V Doherty September 7th, 2007 05:19 AM

XL2 with Nikon Primes!
8 Attachment(s)
Just recieved the Novoflex XL-Nikon adaptor from B&H.
It is a very well constructed and engineered piece of solid metal with a nice
Nikon lens release mechanism.
Beautifully finished in either powder coat or anodised aluminium - I don't know which.

Shown in the photos are:

Tokina 28-80mm f2.8 Zoom
Nikon 85mm f1.4
Sigma Fisheye f2.8

A quick test in the backyard proved the combination of 35mm SLR lenses and the XL2 to be a vastly superior image than the stock Canon 20x XL lens.
Even with the 7.2x magnification factor, the image quality is simply so superior and the bonus of full manual control with nice full-throw focus on the barrel is hard to beat.
I would definitely recommend this setup for anyone with a need for full manual control if you can live with the massive focal length magnification.
It sure beats paying $$$$ for the Canon manual lens, and most people have some decent SLR lenses at their disposal.

I mostly shoot concerts, theatre and rock bands, so the 7.2x magnification is actually an advantage when shooting from the back or middle of the auditorium.

I highly recommend the Novoflex adaptor if you have some Nikon lenses lying around!!!!

Adam Bray September 8th, 2007 12:33 AM

You has video?

Martin Catt September 8th, 2007 08:13 AM

I went looking for the adapter on the B&H site, but couldn't find it listed. Do you have a B&H stock number for it?


Jack Barker September 8th, 2007 10:16 AM


Originally Posted by Adam Bray (Post 741082)
You has video?

Yeah, show us some vid, kid!

Chris Hurd September 8th, 2007 10:49 AM


Originally Posted by Martin Catt (Post 741160)
B&H site, but couldn't find it listed. Do you have a B&H stock number for it?

Here it is:


B&H# NOACXLN ($225 as of 08 Sep 2007).

Per Johan Naesje September 8th, 2007 11:43 AM

I would love to view some footage taken with the fisheye lens with 7.2 magnification! Problem will be you get approx 100mm focal lenght, so I dont think the fisheye effect will show up in any way?

Paul V Doherty September 9th, 2007 11:21 AM

Hi folks,

OK I'm rendering some footage in FCP as we speak.

I made some test shots of a static scene (Virgin Mary grotto in my Mum's garden!) at different focal lengths. Will post stills shortly.

Thanks Chris for finding the B&H link!

I can't commend the Novoflex adaptor highly enough - it is built rock solid with reliable German precision!!!!
Well worth the ~$200-250 (with shipping)

Paul V Doherty September 9th, 2007 11:46 AM

XL2 with Nikon Primes - Frame Grabs!!!
5 Attachment(s)
Ok Here are the frame grabs from FCP, with "Bronze" preset applied in Magic Bullet and matted to 2.35:1 coz I like it that way :)

Sorry they're just raw 720x576 anamorphic exported direct from FCP:

1) Sigma Full-Frame Fisheye (don't know the focal length - probably around 15 or 16mm)

2) Sigma 20mm f1.8

3) Tokina 28-80mm f2.8 Zoom @28mm

4) Tokina 28-80mm f2.8 Zoom @80mm

5) Nikon 85mm f1.4

Statue is approx. 2 feet tall. Tripod was approx. 8 feet from statue.

N.B. The visible difference in quality from the Nikon prime to the other lenses is marvellous. The Sigma 20mm f1.8 comes close though.
All lenses were stopped down to around f5.6 in order to achieve shutter of 1/50 sec. @-3dB gain in overcast daylight. Manual white balance performed with each change of lens.

Scott Lovejoy September 10th, 2007 12:26 PM

Sorry, I'm still a bit naive about things, so I hope someone can answer these questions:

1) Those shots look squished, almost like 16:9 footage shown at 4:3 without letterboxing (a la fullscreen).

2) What would an adapter like this do for DoF? I would guess that the effect would be minimal (a mini35 or m2 being the desired effect).

Answers welcome, thank you.

Richard Hunter September 11th, 2007 12:09 AM


Originally Posted by Scott Lovejoy (Post 742030)
2) What would an adapter like this do for DoF? I would guess that the effect would be minimal (a mini35 or m2 being the desired effect).

Answers welcome, thank you.

Hi Scott. No real impact on DOF. The posts before that mention changes in focal length due to use of this adaptor are not accurate. The lens focal length is fixed by its geometry and this does not change just because an adaptor is fitted. What does change is the field of view, which is much narrower than what you would get with the same lens on a 35mm camera and this is why it gives a zoomed in effect but without the shallow depth of field of a long lens.


Paul V Doherty September 11th, 2007 02:29 AM

I don't believe anyone in this particular thread stated anything remotely like the notion that this adaptor somehow magically gives you 35mm DOF and magically changes the focal length.

The 7.2x focal length magnification *is* mentioned many times. This is the *opposite* of stating that you get the full glory of 35mm FOV with the adaptor.

Put these Nikon Lenses in perspective: the top-shelf Nikon 85mm f1.4 prime is not as long as the stock 20x at maximum zoom, *however* it does give you an apeture of f1.4 at 85mm - something the stock Canon lens can never do. This will give you much narrower DOF than the stock lens.
Also, the *real* advantage of using top-shelf SLR lenses is twofold:

1) Top-shelf Nikon glass is infinitely superior to the stock Canon 20x
2) Most Top-shelf SLR lenses have *very* nice manual focus rings with nice long throw

Lastly, I did clarify already that the frame grabs were 720x576 anamorphic and matted to 2.35:1 - hence the "stretched" appearance.

Hope this clarifies the situation!!

Scott Di Lalla September 11th, 2007 08:06 PM

This may be a silly question. I have a bunch of lenses laying around from my F3 film camera. Does it have to be from a digital camera or can I use the film camera lenses?

Kevin Randolph September 11th, 2007 08:52 PM

lenses that you used with your F3 would be fine to use.

Paul V Doherty September 12th, 2007 01:57 AM

*Almost* any Nikon F-mount lens can be used.
That means virtually any Nikon lens made since the 1950's!!!

There are a few rare exceptions of Nikon lenses which have rear elements that project too far into the camera body for use with the XL2. These lenses cannot be used with most Nikon Digital SLR's and some film cameras either - they require a mirror lock-up feature so that the rear element does not smash the mirror!!
It is doubtful you will encounter these lenses in day-to-day scenarios.

You *can* use specially designated "DX" lenses made specifically for digital SLR's, however because they have no apeture ring on the lens (called "G" lenses by Nikon - other manufacters have other names for the same design) you will have to manually force the apeture open by stuffing a bit of paper into the apeture lever on the back of the lens. I have used my Sigma 12-24mm DX lens on my XL2 using the stuffed paper method in the apeture and it works nicely.
The reason you can use DX lenses is because although a DX lens only covers about 75% of the image area of a full 35mm film frame, the 7.2x magnification caused by the even smaller 1/3" CCD on the XL2 easily crops out the smaller image circle produced by DX lenses.

Just remember to remove the paper from the apeture lever when you want to use that lens on your digital SLR again!!!!!!!!

Be VERY careful when attaching any non-stock lens to the XL body!!!!
Watch out for two things:

1) The rear lens element must NEVER protrude so far as to come into contact with the glass covering the CCD block
2) Metal parts must NEVER come into contact with the XL mount electronic contacts inside the XL mount. I have heard of XL bodies being fried because of short circuits in the lens mount caused by non-stock lenses. (Actually it was Quyen who fried an XL during the development of his LetusXL adaptor - I have one and it's brilliant!, but I'm always careful when attaching it to the XL mount)

Hope that helps!

Michael Krumlauf September 30th, 2007 12:28 PM

Does this adapter have any magnification to the focal length or do u get 50mm from a 50mm lens?

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