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Sony ENG / EFP Shoulder Mounts
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Old December 22nd, 2006, 11:17 AM   #1
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XD HD and Carl Zeiss lenses

Just wondering if anyone here had been able to try XD HD with a Carl Zeiss Digizoom or Digiprime. I'm now in the throws of considering trading in the 510 and getting a 350 as a stop gap so I can get on with the business of building up a library of HD footage.

But I don't want to invest in 1/2" glass. And I'm also rather tired of the various optical limitations of the various Broadcast lenses. So I'm considering some of the CZ or Cooke range of lenses instead.
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Old December 22nd, 2006, 12:02 PM   #2
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My guess is a set of Digiprimes is more than $50k US, and the zoom would be at least $30kish, probably more. Not to mention they'd greatly impact how you have to work...hard to operate as a one-man band with that gear.

If I was afraid of 1/2" glass, I'd personally just get a wide-angle 2/3" HD lens.
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Old December 22nd, 2006, 12:02 PM   #3
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You might want to also look at the "CIne" stle lenses from Canon and Fujinon. I was on a shoot the other day where they were shooting Varicam with a Canon Cinestyle lens and it looked like nice glass.
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Old December 22nd, 2006, 12:10 PM   #4
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A lot of the stuff I do these days is with at the very least a small crew. I'm looking upon it as being like stills photography. It is a pain carrying around a load of lenses, but ultimately the quality is worth it.

I'm just getting a bit fed up with CA, focus breathing, and soft edges at various apertures. The zoom may be $30k at least, but that's $30k that will last.
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Old December 23rd, 2006, 10:16 AM   #5
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Is $30K the price of the Carl Zeiss zoom lens? or just a vague calculation. If this is true, what would be the cheapest way to get rid of CA? Also, I checked the price of the Canon Cinema lens, mentioned above, and they are around $19,000 but I don't know about CA... Thanks for your opinions.
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Old December 23rd, 2006, 11:16 AM   #6
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Just a rough stab in the dark guess.

Ideally I like the look of the CZ zoom. Although looking at these forums, the Fujinon 1/2" lenses seem to be getting much better comments than the Canon ones. Has anyone been able to compare them?

With the CZ, as Nate pointed out, my workflow may have to change. But I don't think it is that much of an issue really. As I mentioned in a previous post, my stills camera colleagues have to change lenses all the time. Its just a matter of building in the timetable to account for those sorts of things, and having a cheaper ENG style zoom lens on standby for the kinds of shoots that require it.
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Old December 23rd, 2006, 11:50 AM   #7
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I have to say that the one thing my Canon KH20 seems to be good at is producing minimal CA. While I am still not convinced that the KH20 is worth the nearly 3 times the cost of a comparable SD lens, it isn't all bad and in most circumstances it produces clean HD images.

Maybe you should consider searching out a good half inch SD lens and buy the 2/3" adapter so you can hire the appropriate glass for more critical applications. This is kind of where I stand. The KH20 is my everyday "hack" lens and I'll hire in better glass, if and when needed.

I recently decided to spend the money I saved sticking with a cheap lens on some new lights and other support gear.

I am still trying to find a good Fujinon/Canon HD lens comparison.
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Old December 23rd, 2006, 12:08 PM   #8
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I notice that Canon now have a KH16. Similar spec to the KH21, with with more limited focal length. Like you Alister I am rather disturbed by their price/performance ratio. I found CA to be a problem with the KH20, and indeed the HJ17 I tried too. Alarmingly so in some cases.
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Old December 23rd, 2006, 01:21 PM   #9
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Some CA is produced in the optical block and filters. It's not all produced by the lens.
Until we get some good lens comparisons with known lenses and formulate some benchmarks it is difficult to say what to expect from the lenses currently available. Maybe I should find a good lens lab who can take a look at My KH20 (projection tests etc) and tell me what's going on.
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Old December 23rd, 2006, 01:38 PM   #10
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I recently spent some time with the Fuji XSS18x5.5 lens. Compared to my Fuji S19 I was rather shocked at the amount of CA produced by the $10K+ lens. I had expected to see a $7K difference in performance but it was not there in spades. My S19 was only a slight hair softer at the extreme corners and it had somewhat less contrast. At f4 the two looked virtually the same at center. At f2.8 the XSS was less soft at the center. but the difference was slight. Interestingly, the S19 had (to my eyes) fewer R/G shading issues than the XSS18 out of the box.

To the XSS's credit, it did go to 5.5 whereas the S19 only went to 6.4 at its widest.

In short, I'm happy I did not spend the $7K+ for an HD lens at this time ;-)

best regards,
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Old December 24th, 2006, 06:38 AM   #11
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It would be good to somehow get a more definitive test done.
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