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Sony NEX-VG10 / VG20 / VG30 / VG900
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Old December 31st, 2010, 12:24 AM   #1
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Anyone need a 16mm and 1855 lens?

I've just had an idea!

I want a "film camera lens" on an HD body.

By film camera lens I mean either a set of fast primes or a fast 5X-6X zoom. The zoom should be mechanical with real ball bearings.

The aperture ring should be direct.

Makes no difference if they are Nikon, Canon, or Minolta.

Then I need an adaptor for my NEX-5.

Focus using Focus Assist. Adjust exposure via histogram BEFORE I press MOVIE to record.

But what about the zoom and focus noise?

I've been think about how I used to shoot film. I shoot "photo-film." Basically photo compositions with movement within the frame. If you've seen Antonioni's Red Desert you know what I mean. (Yes, very boring by today's standards.)

With a Bolex with a TINY ground--glass finder one had to focus BEFORE the shot. Thus, there would be no focus noise during a shot.

Likewise, adjusting exposure during a shot -- where lenses clicked into stops -- wasn't possible either. So I'm used to setting exposure BEFORE the shot.

Zoom? What zoom? That came almost 5 years later. A 3X. So zooming during shooting is not needed, hence no noise.

What I don't need are the 16mm and 1855 lens that came with the the NEX-5.

Anyone interested in these to add to their VG10?

PS: unfortunately, there will be no lens stabilization which may not be so good!
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Last edited by Steve Mullen; December 31st, 2010 at 07:16 AM.
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Old December 31st, 2010, 08:07 AM   #2
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I like the approach....and it would likely work surprisingly well. The whole "tech revolution" in cameras and photography has been a boon and a curse...A boon in the sense that it allows almost anyone to take decent photos and video, a curse in that it allows everyone to take good photos and video...I too remember the days when the operator's skill played a much more important role in the process.

I've got a NEX 3 that I bought for stills work, was impressed by it's video capability enough to buy a VG-10, which I love. Along the way to the VG-10, I went the adaptor route, and used a lot of my Nikon glass, got some terrific results and continued the trend with the VG-10.

I have the 18-55 that I actually use on the VG-10 frequently...I like the 18-200 a lot, and I also have played around with my Nikon mount lens baby with interesting results. I would like to get a 16mm e-mount for use on both cameras to add another aspect to the process...they've been hard to find where I live.

I enjoy using legacy lenses on the VG-10, I truly do. I like the look, and I like the additional effort needed to get a good capture. It takes me back 40 plus years to my first SLR and makes me "think" about what I'm doing more.

BUT...I'm still a gear whore to a degree...I "want" a 16mm for experimenting with it...I don't "need" it though. And, I will likely buy it eventually when the right deal comes along, play with it for a while and then eventually mount it somewhat permanently on my nex 3 and use it as a pocketable cam for street photography. Until then, I'll continue "experimenting"...I'm having fun, especially with the lens baby.

It's a sickness, I tell you...a sickness...
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Old December 31st, 2010, 08:43 PM   #3
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When you are hand holding during shooting video, what amount of tele can you use with a non-stabilized lens?

I find the 1855 -- which zooms to 100mm -- too be too short while the 18200 that goes to 400mm too be absurd. My memory was that hand holding much more than a 150mm lens was pushing it. What have y you found?

If one wanted 150mm one would need a lens that zoomed to about 80mm.

Then if it were a 4X, the wide would offer 37mm which would be acceptable.

That would mean finding a fast 20-80mm lens, and I'm not sire there is such a lens because it's too wide for most photographers. Have you found any thing near this?

I suppose a 25-75 or 25-100 would be ok but one would not have a wide angle lens. Unless I kept the 16mm.
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Old January 4th, 2011, 10:16 PM   #4
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personally, I find 100mm to be about my limit for consistently "smooth-ish" shooting. I am impressed with the effectiveness of the stabilization in the 18-200; Even fully extended, I get video that's comparable to the nex 3 with a 50mm Nikon mounted on a Merlin.
I've been prowling used camera equipment for some old Konica/Minolta film lenses. They had a couple ( a 135 that I remember well) that would be nice to try.
I've picked up adaptors for Nikon, Canon, and pentax glass, so I can fiddle with stuff as I find it. There seems to be plenty of cheap, old glass around...who knows? the jewel is sitting on someone's closet...waiting to be sold
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Old January 5th, 2011, 07:45 AM   #5
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Thank you for your answer. This means the Minolta MC/MD 28-85 would be damn near perfect.

There is a 24-105 that would be fun but it does not get good reviews.

Hey folks, doesn't anyone want one of my lenses? Trust me, after you use the 1855 on a VG10 you will love it! It brings the camera into perfect balance!

PS: if only the 16mm were 25mm so it would be a nice NORMAL lens. I would like one AF/AE lens!
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Old January 8th, 2011, 09:30 AM   #6
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Steve, I sent an email about buying your lenses, drop me a note...

jemmoore@hotmail.com
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Old January 9th, 2011, 03:25 PM   #7
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"personally, I find 100mm to be about my limit for consistently "smooth-ish" shooting. I am impressed with the effectiveness of the stabilization in the 18-200."

Your comment made me rethink my whole idea.

I know the 1855 doesn't give me enough zoom while 18200 gives me way too much. I see no need for a 360mm lens! But 150mmto 170mm is a must.

So a Minolta 28-85 would SEEM perfect. The 85 would give about 150mm which is exactly what I need. The Minolta 24-135 would be even better going to about 250mm.

BUT, since these aren't stabilized and we both agree 100mm is the limit for non-stabilized, the 1855 already gives me 100mm. And, its 18 is much wider than than a 24mm or 28mm lens would give me.

Bottom line, I need an E-mount that is 18-90 (5X) or even better a 16-80 (5X) or 16-96 (6X).

As far as I know Sony doesn't plan to release any of these. Which leaves me 4 options.

1) Live with 1855 and maybe sell the 16mm.

2) Find out if a teleconverter can be used with the 1855. A 1.5 (150mm) or 1.7 (170mm) would be fine, but may be as big and heavy as a 18-200!

3) Look at the A33/A55 which I think is too big and heavy. And, I've read that that the only way one gets MANUAL control in video mode is to turn off AF which is the best thing about the A33/A55. I can't confirm this since the dam photo reviewers never really check video operation. One well known site continues to use the phrase "1080i60 60fps with a 30fps sensor." In fact, the manual says nothing about manual control in video!

4) Check if any camera does in camera stabilization which would allow the use of any lens. This really is the ideal for those wanting to use other lenses.

PS: Exactly what is ACTIVE stabilization? I've heard this turns on electronic stabilization in the camera. If the camera has this feature, I wonder if you can turn it on when a non E-mount lens is mounted?

Wayne can you try this?
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Old January 10th, 2011, 01:57 AM   #8
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Steve -
Have you actually put "hands on" an A33/55? I took a look at one, and it's practically weightless - I looked at a VG10 at the same time, and was shocked at how heavy it was. Very quickly made me even more convinced that I'd rather grab an A55...

Part of the Alpha equation is in body stabilization, A33/55 included - BUT you'd be stuck with A mount lenses, or whatever adaptable lenses could be had (not sure about that, always found cheap old Minolta glass to be pretty nice). The other thing is that with in body SSS stabilization on, the record times plummet with the A55, and only slightly better with the A33 - apparently the compact bodies really hold the heat in, and the active stabilizers are like mini-torches! In high ambient temps, the Sony charts I've seen go as low as around 5 minutes before thermal shutdown.

Particularly since you like the NEX series, the A series might be worth a look. There are downsides, but as I was going to comment on your post on the other thread, it's bloody hard to meld a really good still camera with a high megapixel sensor with a really good video camera.

I noticed that Canon seems to be moving to a "HD" sensor that is native rez for video (1920x1080), I have to wonder if a NATIVE large sensor for HD wouldn't be the best "solution" - but it wouldn't be a "good" still sensor by any stretch of the imagination... Actually just gave me an idea for a sensor design that would be the best of both worlds, think I should go see if it's patentable! I'm just a mad scientist at heart, so it's probably crazy, but I'll have to think on it, it might work!

As you noted on the other thread, finding a camera that does dual duty with equal grace and quality is quite difficult - I've been looking myself, and there's ALWAYS a compromise to the secondary function, although I'm finding for casual video the little Sony P&S cameras aren't that bad, and I'm hopeful my budget allows for an A55 in the near future now they are becoming more easily available.
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Old January 10th, 2011, 01:03 PM   #9
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I did some research and was amazed again that while we bitch about Sony leaving critical features out "until next year" they are really far ahead of everyone else.

They make the best CMOS sensors, the A33/A55 move way past everyone else that is still basically building a 1990 SLR modified to capture digitally, and then modified again to have Live View, and modified again to record Live View as video. The D60 sounds great until you find out shutter priority is not implemented and no AF during shooting. And AF is done by having the mirror move up and then down!

Canon does have then lens I want, 18-135, which.points out that the real weakness in the NEX is only three lenses PLUS Sony refusing to bundle YOUR choice of lens with the camera you want. We need a lens exchange market.

The A33 would be ideal except that the reviews claim that if you want the current aperture to be used when you press the video record button, you must turn off the wonderful phase AF. This seems crazy to me, and may be a reviewer error because the manual makes no mention of the ability to use aperture for video. Which is even worse!

Strangely, I think the 18200 might work better on a NEX 5 than the VG10 because you would hold the NEX by the lens itself using your left hand. You could use the buttons and zoom with your right hand. The downside is your left hand would cover the focus ring! Of course a cradle could be made that your hand would grasp while leaving the focus ring free to turn. Must patent!

----------

Running a chip at 60Hz generates a huge amount of heat. Yet, Sony is going to do
this on a 1/2 inch chip in a tiny camera to be released in March. It would seem far more logical to do 60p on a big chip in a big body like the VG10. Which makes me wonder, could there be a VG20 that uses the 16MP chip running at 60Hz but only used for interlaced video for the consumer marker. It would enable Sony to ramp up production and test real world peformance before the NXCAM.

An even stranger thought. Maybe the 14MP was designed to run at 60Hz so the vg10 could shoot and record 60i but at the last minute heat issues where found and the camera was turned into a 30p unit after all marketing was created. The vg10 I think is the only camera that can be used for event shooting. Sony would logically do what it took to keep this feature. As soon as the heat issues are resolved, a vg20 can be shipped.

--------

You raise a really good topic, which almost everyone ignores. How are the almost 12MP used for video actually made to be the 2MP that are recorded.

I believe the chip outputs everything.

A 3MP frame could be made by interpolating it from 12MP. I believe about 3MP must be used to allow debayering to yield 2MP. To do interpolation, the DSP must process 12MPs at either 30Hz or 60Hz.

Or, every other row and column could be discarded from the sensor which has the advantage of keeping the DSP dealing with only 3MPs at either 30hz or 60Hz.

Once debayered, in theory both 30p and 60i require 30Hz parts. Which would explain why 60p is really hard as everything must be able to process 2MP at 60Hz. This would explain why a vg20 recording 60i would be a step toward the NXCAM recording 60p.

PS: if the chip is run at 24fps, the 3 MP debayering DSP only needs to run at 48Hz and the post debayering needs to only run at 24Hz. Clearly, other than marketing, there is no reason a vg20 could not use 2:3 pulldown to put 24 into 60i -- while the NXCAM would record native 24, 25, 30, 50, and 60p plus 50i/60i.

Bottom-line, would Sony prefer to test run 16 MP 60Hz chips in a 50i/60i VG20 before the NXCAM or wait until after it was out and release a vg20 that offeres 24p plus 50i/60i. Or, hold off 24p until 2012.
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Old January 11th, 2011, 12:44 AM   #10
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I think you're thinking of the TX110V? That one will do 60P, but I'm pretty sure it's a fairly small chip as it's an extension of the TX line, and they have small lenses and smaller CMOS chips (quite nice cams for "stick it in your pocket" video though!).



I think that the sensor physical dimensions are pretty well "known" - it a matter of how many pixels they cram into that HxW dimension, and what sorts of tricks they use to feed the processors/maintain performance. The Sony consumer cameras are a fine example - "reusing" specific sensor designs in various camera variations, then the following year releasing a higher megapixel resolution chip, in basically the same camera packages at different price points (the TX7 and TX9 for instance are in IDENTICAL shells, one has 10.2Mp, the sucessor has 12.2, and the TX110 may even continue inthe same shell with 16.2Mp), and with minor feature tweaks.

The "7" series handycams used the same basic lens/sensor block, with minor firmware tweaks, the "500" series continued that, with the "550" adding a wider lens, and some more tweaks... with the same CMOS.

SO, what I'm getting at is that as Sony generates "new" sensors/CMOS options, they are appearing in multiple cameras (i.e. NEX3/5, VG10, A33, A560). They are probably running very short of the 16.2 Mp sensor in the A55, as it has been an ultra-hot product... but logically when the fabrication line ramps up, there will be more cameras with that sensor... and then there's the rumoured APS-C for the A77... which will offer another new sensor option.

The whole "heat" issue seems to be a really tough nut to crack when dealing with these "big" sensors for video - I'm guessing the VG10 must use some serious "heat channelling" to maintain the continuous shooting capability, especially considering the short record times of the A33/55 in high ambient heat conditions. The video camera format probably offers an easier engineering puzzle in that respect! Those A33/55's are pretty compact and light!
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