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Old February 3rd, 2009, 01:48 PM   #1
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17X lens with HD200 for live shows?

Been using my HD100 with 16X lens for IMAG on live shows lately. Usually shooting from about 40' to 50' (or less) and it's been working great. Been wanting to add a HD200 to my inventory and was wondering if upgrading to the 17X lens is worth the money? And how much farther could I shoot and still be able to frame a talking head at a podium?

Thanks,

Carlos
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Old February 3rd, 2009, 02:32 PM   #2
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If you do the math, the 17x5mm lens is 85mm at the telephoto end while the 16x5.5mm lens is 88mm, making the 16x lens longer. Having said that, if you are avoiding full telephoto due to chromatic aberration, the 17x should allow higher quality images at max telephoto. If you are using the 16x at full tele already, you may or may not notice that the 17x lens is a hair shorter.
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Old February 3rd, 2009, 03:03 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
If you do the math, the 17x5mm lens is 85mm at the telephoto end while the 16x5.5mm lens is 88mm, making the 16x lens longer. Having said that, if you are avoiding full telephoto due to chromatic aberration, the 17x should allow higher quality images at max telephoto. If you are using the 16x at full tele already, you may or may not notice that the 17x lens is a hair shorter.
Thanks for the info Shaun. Is there a better lens for shooting longer distances?
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Old February 3rd, 2009, 06:03 PM   #4
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There is also a doubler by Century optics (Snider spelling looks wrong?) for around $800 as I remember for 1/3 JVC ProHD camcorders. You then could use the good focal length range (20-40mm) and it would be like using a 17x at 40mm to 80mm. That's theory of course. A 17x would be a lot nice I bet. I might try the doubler anyway and still use it on a 17x if I get one next year.

I've seen some footage from the 17x, and from what I saw.. (I did not shoot it so I don't know the aperture and focal length) it looks at it's worst (full tele & wide) about as good as the 16x does at it's best (30mm or so at f4.8). So I think a 17x would be the choice. The 13x is too wide and the 18x is way expensive.
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Old February 4th, 2009, 05:32 PM   #5
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Look at some posts on using Nikon 35mm lens with an MTF adapter. Eric Gulbransen has posted some footage. This is a practical solution for very clean images at high telephoto.
Mind you, control will be clumsy - no zoom servo.
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Old February 6th, 2009, 12:09 PM   #6
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I think I might order sometime this month the Schneider/Century optics 2x extender that I mentioned earlier. $699 and I'm going to be doing a bunch of sports/nature work, and I'm too cheap to get a 17x lens right now. I'll post images if I get it.
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Old February 11th, 2009, 02:11 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Alex Humphrey View Post
I think I might order sometime this month the Schneider/Century optics 2x extender that I mentioned earlier. $699 and I'm going to be doing a bunch of sports/nature work, and I'm too cheap to get a 17x lens right now. I'll post images if I get it.
Alex, as Shaun pointed out, and I can tell you from direct experience, the 17x lens does not give you any extended focal length. The extra range is on the wide-angle side of the equation (as it should be!).
However, the 16x lens is at it's weakest optically as it zooms past 50mm or so. Put a 2x doubler on this, and I can gaurantee you that the optics will be the weakest link in your image quality. A nikon lens adapter is under $400, and excellant glass is available that will virtually eliminate chromatic aberration and softness issues of the standard lens at telephoto range, and considerably extend that range. Losing the servo zoom is the only significant con, and zooming footage is only for tyros anyway!
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Old February 11th, 2009, 06:53 PM   #8
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Sean,

My thought is, (it may be wrong) if I need 60-88mm on any lens, and at that range the 16x is fairly unimpressive, if I had a Century Optics doubler (between camera and lens) then I can put my 16x lens from 30-45mm and have the same focal range, but a more acceptable image. Later when I get a 17x lens, I'll probably still run with the doubler for sports and some nature shots.

Agreed 100% on a Nikon and MTF or similar adapter. But for sports, I need the servo.

Basically I need some better images starting next week at the full zoom lenghth and I'm toooooooooo cheap to get a 17x lens to have the 50-80mm range with the sharpnes I want. The difference of full zoom between the 17x and the 16x is fairly small. Basically they are to the eye, about the same (focal range) but the 17x is a lot cleaner at all fstops and focal ranges. I don't have a 17x, but I saw some raw footage someone gave me, and I thought even the wide angle shots were significantly sharper, and no I don't know what aperature the other operater used, but mine where at 4.5f or so.


Side Note: I was watching 28 days later, shot with a Canon SD 24f camera about 6 years ago. Looked ok. Doesn't compre with my JVC HD110 with the 16x lens. Funny what a few years and a format change does. So really I shouldn't complain too much. I honestly just wished that Fujinon had kept the lens from zooming past 70mm.. then all we would be complaining about was the focal range, not the edge to edge sharpness with the lens. But oh well. Just have to not zoom in all the way.
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Old February 14th, 2009, 03:23 PM   #9
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Alex - your right. I'm quite happy I opted for the 17x right from the start. I've used the 16x on a HD110 as well and the tele range is definitely problematic in comparison.
But even a quality converter like the Century is going to depreciate the lens performance. It's a compromise of the overall lens design, and I'd be very surprised if it gives an improvement by doubling the lower focal lengths compared to the lens native shooting at the same effective focal length. You'll also have extra concerns with flare and dust.

One other possibility, check out the 2/3" lens adapter. There is some fine 2/3" broadcast glass out there at very reasonable prices, and you'll be using it at native 2x effective focal length...
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Old February 14th, 2009, 03:53 PM   #10
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Sean, something i just discovered on the 16x about 10 minutes ago. (It's raining and not quite snowing here) I was interested in seeing if the magical f4-5.6 was true with the 16x at 88mm. I printed a 8.5 x 11 page with periods (.) and taped it to a wall. I then focused with a HD monitor and ran the shutter speed up and down to change the aperture. Weird thing.... Wide open and f11 and f16 looked the best. Worst? f4 to 5.6. weird. Then I tried the same thing at 40mm and the best looking aperture was closer to f5 or maybe f8. I think at least with the 16x that the prime aperture really changes with the focal length. I'm guessing if I move the camera closer and fill the paper in the screen at 20mm and 10mm and 5.5 the prime aperture will increase in size, (smaller number). What have you seen with your 17x?
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