16x Manual: Is this lens still viable? - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Canon XL H Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XL H1S (with SDI), Canon XL H1A (without SDI). Also XL H1.


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Old April 16th, 2007, 09:32 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Diewert View Post
Does that include Red #977? :)
Ha! No, I believe I will be hocking the company car and a couple of staff for that one. ;) All joking aside that is going to be a small chunk of change for us.


Marty,

The 20X is a bit "spongy" when I'm hunting for focus at times, could not agree more. With the peaking turned on, and I little bit of practice with a servo lens again, I'm managing. Not having a hard stop to set focus at full wide as you mention however is going to suck. I'm seriously starting to miss the manual control of a lens already... just not the 16X Fujinon. ;)


I'm more than sold on finding a good used lens.
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Old April 16th, 2007, 12:55 PM   #17
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Daniel: I too tend to use the 16x most of the time, especially handheld. I don't like (or trust) the auto focus on the 20x, and it's really almost the only reliable way to focus that kind of lens quickly (except I have recently found that I can focus the 20x using the Chrozsiel DV Follow Focus unit, because the small gear reduces the ratio and makes fine tuning possible).

I do use the 20x if I need OIS - and contrary to what I originally thought a year ago, I do find OIS useful.

I tend use it (the 20x) more since getting the 6x WA because the two lenses feel similar, and it's not such a shock when I change. But, in general, if I had to chose one lens to take on shoot (as I do today), it would be the 16x.

Marty: I agree that the 16x seems to have less CA to my eye... But ALL of the tests I've read/heard have said it has more, so in recommending one lens over the other I have to defer to the more technical types that have those nice pretty charts.
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Old April 16th, 2007, 01:14 PM   #18
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When I zoom to the absolute max and I am in a dark environment where I opoen up to f1.6 I occasionally see a little CA. WHile it stinks that it is there, at least you can do this. Try to see if the 20x has CA at full Tele and f1.6. You can't! Cause the 20x has no neck! (can anyone place that obscure reference?)
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Old April 16th, 2007, 08:52 PM   #19
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Steve,
Could you give me the full description of the filter you mentioned?(1/2 SoftFX ).
Thanks
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Old April 18th, 2007, 07:28 PM   #20
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Bruce: The Tiffen SoftFX series was originally designed for shooting close-ups of women's faces - it's basically a piece of optical glass with minute divits or dimples in it that create a soft diffusion. They are available from #1/2 (I wish there was a 1/4 and/or 1/8 as there is with Promists) to #6, I believe.. Anything over #1 starts to be too much. I have a #2 that I bought to shoot an interview with an older woman movie star (at her request) and I've never used it since.

Although intended for shooting faces in film, many, myself included, have used the #1/2 as a general softening filter for subjects other than faces in video. I started using it with DVCAM in the 90's because it gave a nice, less edgy, look to the footage I was shooting for a documentary TV series I was working on.

With HDV, I find it extremely useful to soften the (what I call) raw look of the format. It gives a "creamier" look to footage, even exteriors. As I said above, it really enhances the 16x. It looks great with lights in the shot, like bar signs, because the light's soft glow becomes very pleasing.

Problems are similar to any diffusion filter, mainly 1) if you shoot toward a light source there may be excessive flaring 2) if you shoot with the lens wide and stopped down below f4, the dimples may show up, especially if shooting toward a window. 3) When shooting wide with the 6x you need the aperature wide open all the time or the dimples WILL show in almost any lighting condition, just like dust specks.

I have a 1/2 SoftX in both clear and warm (the warm has an 812 added) for both my 3x3 and 4x4 matte boxes. I seldom shoot without one.
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Old April 19th, 2007, 03:42 AM   #21
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Steve,
Thanks for the info.I don't have a 16x.How will it work with the stock lens? Are you saying that it's not good for faces? Most of wht I'm doing lately is events like weddings, and I'm having to crank the gain in lowlight receptions. Would the filter be usefull in those situations?
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Old April 19th, 2007, 10:17 AM   #22
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Bruce - it works with any lens - I would imagine that it would be excellent for weddings - for that purpose you might also like the higher numbers too - much better than the ubiquitous fog and star filters...

If there's a pro store somewhere near you, try a few different densities... I would guess you'd like the 1/2, 1 and 2 (#2 is too dense for my tastes, but I don't shoot weddings).

And yes, it's great for faces, women love it (when I said "other than faces" I should have said "as well as faces")...

But, again, be careful to keep your aperature as open as possible to reduce depth-of-field and keep the filter's surface from coming in to focus (same as you would with a star filter or a ProMist).
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Old April 19th, 2007, 07:01 PM   #23
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Great info on the filters Steve. Have you even found a post process or plugin that comes close? Magic Bullet has a few presets that will soften/bloom with settings to tweak, but I have not compared to doing it with actual glass/filter. I'm always afraid to use too many on camera filters, figuring I would have more control in post (my girlfriend would say it's likely just commitment issues, HA).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Rosen View Post
... I have recently found that I can focus the 20x using the Chrozsiel DV Follow Focus unit, because the small gear reduces the ratio and makes fine tuning possible.
If you ever get a chance to post some pics of your setup it would be much appreciated. ;)

Btw, I should have a 16X manual lens sometime next week to try first hand, our Canon rep has been very good to us (not to mention all the evaluation time we had with the H1, more than accommodating on this point). I appreciate all of the feedback you guys have given on this lens, I'll be sure to share my own thoughts once it arrives.


Peace!!
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Old April 19th, 2007, 07:11 PM   #24
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Daniel: I posted a pic on Nov 1st that coincidentally does have the 20 on it - it's in a thread titled ARTICLE ON TV SHOW SHOT WITH H1 or something like that... I don't want to clutter this space up w/ repeat pix and I don't think you'll have trouble finding it...
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Old April 19th, 2007, 07:29 PM   #25
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Ahhh yes, I do remember seeing that setup, I liked it!
Nice customized package you did. Makes me want to get back into the shop and start cutting & grinding again. ;)
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Old April 21st, 2007, 12:10 AM   #26
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I guess this lens will have to do. Canon is never going to release a manual HD version of any lens for the H1. So grab the current 16x now before they stop making them all when the stop making the XL2. oh wait they are stopping the XL2.
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Old April 21st, 2007, 12:11 PM   #27
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Craig: I think you're probably right.. unless of course they repackage the current 16x so it doesn't have the "HD INCOMPATABLE" warning and add another grand to the price...

As much as I love this camera (and have learned to like HDV), I'm frustrated by the lack of pro support from Canon in terms of lenses and viewfinders...

As a result the new 2/3" Panasonic is very tempting to me for my upcoming feature length documentary... P2 cards, pro finder, shoulder balanced, 4.2.2 sampling to DVCPRO HD... (Don't know yet what chips they're using though)...

And you can bet that if, and when, I get one, it'll be with a terrific fully manual Canon lens...
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Old April 21st, 2007, 03:38 PM   #28
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I'm with you on that steve, 2/3" is always tempting, until you total everything up in earnet. I'm also not seeing a lot of pro supported items for the H1 yet. You could argue that the H1 is not a "Pro camera" at under 10K, but then that goes against everything that has been stated by Canon directly. And as such a professional camera should have gear to support the industry using it. The whole "Prosumer" term may be gone but the soapy film left behind is still hanging in there. Not directed at Canon but all of the current HDV cameras on the market.

Also, if you stop to think about it, the H1 is at the top end in cost compared to the other HDV cameras on the market (by nearly double in some cases), even a big jump in cost over the previous XL series cameras. Just a guess but I doubt it has helped market share by having a higher price tag camera, and fewer supported professional lens options. It's all a trade off I guess. After using all of the sub 10K cameras I'm more than familur with each ones weaknesses.

I personaly like being the odd man out for our area (just as we did working with our first HD100), and working with the H1. After all is said and done it's the end result that matters most.
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Old April 21st, 2007, 07:10 PM   #29
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Daniel: True, it is the end result that counts, and as such I have tolerated the "prosumer" label because the H1 images are just so damned good compared to almost anything but a Cine Alta...

I went head to head with an XDCAM a few weeks ago, and in my opinion the Canon more than held it's own - I thought it was better.. of course the XD owner doesn't agree.. and I was using the 16x at the time, so this comment is relative to this thread...

Cost isn't a huge issue for me (other than dropping more than 100Gs).. I would consider paying $30,000+ for a camera & lens because the documentaries I make are broadcast - and the next one, feature length, may go to film.. probably not, but I have to consider the posibility.. That's why I was testing the XD..

Now I've got to get my hands on the new Panasonic - and look at the Red... But I'm not selling my H1, or my 6x lens, or my 16x lens, or my A1 - yet - but stay tuned to this channel...
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Old May 18th, 2007, 10:33 AM   #30
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16x manual

I have had a serious problem with the 16x manual lens on the XLH1. I used it on an important set of interviews for a broadcast television project in preference to the 20x auto as I much prefer a fully manual lens to the horible infinite focus servo 20x1. On my old XL2 I nver had any problms with the 16x1. However when you add into the mix the horrendous viewfinder on the XLH1 you have problems waiting to happen. I thought I protected myelf at least by having a broadcast Sony monitor on location but that didn't help on this occasion. I shoot interviews more often than not in lowest possible lighting conditions with lens wide open and about mid way down the focal length to maximise depth of field out of focus effect in the background which is difficult in HD but important to my style. Key light is provided with a kinoflo which is wonderfully gentle. Well, the lens was hopeless nd the interviews, which are irreplaceable and cant be done again are nearly unuseable. It is impossible to find the point of focus in the picture nd the skin looks completely soft. Is the focus point behind the interviewee, or in front of them, frankly no-one can tell me, and I work in the professional broadcast sector on professional editing gear? As a result I abandoned the XL H1 on this project and all the rest is shot on digibeta. Crystal sharp! I'm not sure if I am going to persevere with the XL H1 to see if they bring out a proper HD manual lens that I an afford, or whether I will simply sell the whole lot and move on.
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