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Old July 17th, 2003, 06:54 PM   #1
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Recommendations for brands of 8 and 16 ND filters?

Anyone know some brands of 8 and 16 ND filters I can buy? Prices? What else do I need, I'm assuming something to hold it.... ;-)

Thanks,

heath
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Old July 17th, 2003, 09:49 PM   #2
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52mm filters screw right in. But, changing them is a pain!
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Old July 17th, 2003, 10:10 PM   #3
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I had put together a package to include the HD10 and a ton of accessories for a possible high-dollar grant - so I shopped for what I considered to be the absolute fantasy HD10 setup. So here's my 2 cents.

Since Chroziel apparently hasn't decided how they're going to support the HD10 yet (that may have changed in the last month or 2), I chose the Century Optics DV Mattebox, with the optional French Flag and 15mm rods support, the DSMB44-15, so as to be compatible with standard 15mm accessories down the road. I also liked the Cavision 15mm Mini DV Rods System, especially the flexibility to add accessories like side flags, balance part for mounting the camera farther back, centered on a tripod, extra long optional rods, and very adjustable handgrips. What I don't like about Cavision is the bellows-style mattebox, how it seems to be raised up a lot more that the Century in order to be centered on the mattebox, and the possibility that it's only set up for thin resin filters instead of the thicker glass filters in frames. Not sure about that, though - check with Cavision.

Also, go to studio1productions.com and check out the Pro Mini DV Shoulder Brace. It looks like a sturdy, lightweight support that could help with the (now) very front-heavy camera. My grand plan is to somehow marry the Century Mattebox with the Cavision Rods System, and mount the whole shebang on the Pro Mini DV Brace. That would give you a film-style filter setup, even when shooting handheld.

As far as filters, I have used the Formatt resin filters and sunshade on my Sony PD100, and have found them to be acceptable, but not great as far as image quality is concerned. They seem to want to hold a static charge that collects dust like crazy, and then you have to be overly careful in cleaning them to make sure you don't scratch the resin. For my money, nothing beats 4x4 Tiffen Glass. It will be especially important to have the best glass filters you can afford, as the HD10's higher resolution will almost certainly show more flaws in any filters. You might also want to add a polarizer and something in the Pro Mist or Low Contrast series into the mix.

As always, I would shop first by searching at B&H, as they seem to have everything under the sun in stock, and can give you an idea of what 10% off retail looks like.

Just as an aside, I saw Karl from cinetechonline.com at this year's NAB, and he was showing off a follow focus system for the Sony PD150 and Pana DSR100 using a split gear wrapped around the focus wheel! I know, I know - the PD150 and the HD10 have electronic focus rings, but it would still help in a lot of situations to have a film-style knob to pull focus with. I think a capable operator with a large LCD would be able to pull focus on the fly, if not hit repeatable focus marks. Karl's stuff is hellishly expensive, but he's been custom - building stuff for the film industry for years, and he could probably fabricate just about anything you could dream up. We can still dream, can't we?

/dreaming of shooting a feature with a consumer camera - finally!
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Old July 17th, 2003, 11:26 PM   #4
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Somehow I doubt that you could ever pull any kind of accurate focus with the focus ring on the HD10, because it just isn't manual, it's electronically assisted, but I could be wrong. Personally I think I'm going to wait for the professional model HD MPEG2 cams to come out before I spend any money on that kind of garb, and just enjoy the cam for what it is, an inexpensive camera with a exceptionally nice picture, but very un-professional controls. I went through all that accessory buying with the GL1, anamorphic lens, shoulder mount, beachtek adapter...and you end up spending as much as the camera cost again. Though having said that, I was looking at those Glidecam steadycam systems this afternoon...I'd love to see some HD10 footage shot using one of those! That and really good tripod...and a mattbox......and a ......helpppp!!!!
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Old July 18th, 2003, 10:34 AM   #5
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Paul, I was laughing out loud. Yes, the lamentable "accesssory creep" that happens with small camcorders is quite the ailment for some of us. (I wrote in a Steadicam Mini into my grant proposal, BTW) But I feel that if you choose your accessories wisely, you can upgrade lots of that equipment to future cameras, as well.

Tiffen 4x4 glass filters will still be suitable for all types of matteboxes, and the right mattebox would be suitable for any number of cameras. I just noticed that Century's mattebox is manufactured by Vocas, who also offers a line of matteboxes for larger lenses. I contacted Vocas's US dealer, prosourcebmi.com, and they are checking into what plans Vocas has to support this camera, besides the product they are offering through Century.

Even the (Vocas) Century DV Mattebox can fit larger, ENG style cameras like the Sony DSR-300, which has a standard ENG lens. The Steadicam Mini supports cameras up to 15lbs., which could be a fully loaded and accessorized HD10, or a field-stripped-down ENG camera.

Either way, it seems to me the trend will be towards smaller HD cameras, not larger (the Dalsa Origin digital cinematography camera exluded - that thing's a monster!). So lots of the types of lightweight, compact equipment for this camera will have a long lifespan.

If the next generation of HD can have small, manual lenses (a return to C-mount, anybody? I know an old 10-120mm Angenieux that's dying to work again) and either record to DV tape or some kind of compact, high capacity flash memory (how about a camera with no moving parts! and no digitizing, to boot) THEN we'll really be onto something! And every film school in the world could afford 5 of them ;-)
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Old July 18th, 2003, 04:11 PM   #6
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>If the next generation of HD can have small,
>manual lenses (a return to C-mount, anybody?
>I know an old 10-120mm Angenieux that's dying to work again)

damn straight! -- ive got (1) a 12-120 cmount (with a ttl viewfinder even, which is arguably much much more practical than 113000 crummy pixels) that sits quitely in the dust-covered case of a 16mm Locam .. (2) a 10mm switar(good enough for 7245 so its definitely good enough for 720p) .. and (3) a switar 25mm macro that's as sharp as a virgin tack.

here's an question for you, scott .. do you think its beyond the realm of possibilty to hire an ambitious machinist to pry the lens off of an hd10u and fix a plate with cmount threads?

over the last 9 months i have owned and used a sony dfw-x700 (1024x768, 15fps, cmount, 1394-to-disk). its design is brutally simple. it's just a 1k chip wrapped in plastic.

.
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Old July 18th, 2003, 09:47 PM   #7
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Chaim -

Ok, first off - you're crazy! Now that we have that out of the way...

There are several contributing factors as to why this would not be a good idea. First, from interior diagrams I have seen, the HD10 has a series of lens elements leading all the way back to the CCD. It looks like very tight quarters in there. Also, the body is magnesium, which is a difficult metal to work with. Lastly, even if one could fit a lens designed for 16mm, the focal length and depth of field would be vastly different due to the size difference between a 16mm film frame and the HD10's CCD. You might be able to fool mother nature, but you can't fool the physics behind optics.

Meantime, check out this link for some folks who had a similar idea:

http://www.zgc.com/html/p_s_technik_mini_35_adapter.htm
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Old July 20th, 2003, 12:25 AM   #8
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Frankly, this "pull focus" seems a bit "film school". It not used that much anymore and if you can't do it -- you can use two shots.
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Old July 20th, 2003, 05:53 PM   #9
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steve m wrote:
>Frankly, this "pull focus" seems a bit "film school".
>
>It not used that much anymore and if you can't do it
>-- you can use two shots.

actually "pull focus" is very "film industry":

.. when you're working with six inches of depth.of.field, and your actor leans forward to sip his drink -- pulling focus way well be the only handy thing in your bag of tricks that saves you from the "purity" of blurry face.

as far as breaking the action into two shots, well, that's certainly an option for the shooter/directors among us, but some us will be using the camera as a DP, and if the all-knowing, all-powerful director wants it all to happen in one shot, then what do you tell him? .. no?

i mean cmon, who here who would complain if this interesting JVC camera were released with a nikon or a pl mount?

if the consumer doesnt know what a lensmount is, then it just a tree falling in the woods that no one hears. but of course, if they do know, then theyre in heaven.

seriuosly, how much more could it have cost to implent. $800 per unit?

.
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Old July 20th, 2003, 05:55 PM   #10
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sorry for the pathologically bad spelling.
i gotta start previewing.

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