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Old February 22nd, 2012, 05:31 PM   #1
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Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

Hi. Been a long time since I last posted. Today I return because I'm thinking about making a big investment and it depends on this: how good is it to work with Canon EF lenses on the VG20, using an adapter? To those of you who have, does using an adapter have any cons?
What worries me the most is being able to squeeze the light out of my lenses. I have a Sigma 24mm f1.8, a Super Takumar 50mm f1.4 and was have at my disposal a Tamron 18-50mm f2.8 and other standard Canon lenses... It would be terrible to have spent that much money on lenses to then not be able to use them on this camera, without mentioning that I would have to buy a kit (VG20H, isn't it?).

My plan is to buy a VG20, without the lens, because I would use the aforementioned lenses I already have.

What are the disadvantages of using an adapter?
Autofocus is nice for some jobs, but I work mostly on film projects and music videos. Manual is my way, so I wouldn't mind having to control everything. BUT, do I have control over the aperture? And if I do, is it limited? I read about a couple of issues (like having a to use the maximum aperture at all times) and have seen the Fotodiox options, one of which has aperture control in the adapter itself but only goes up to f1.7... In spite of this, is there a loss of light using an adapter?

Also, are there focus issues? And does the 1.5x crop factor increase when using the adapter? Do other anomalies appear?

Sorry for the long post, but this is a big leap for me, and I need to be sure I'll be able to work better after this investment, not worse.

Thanks in advance! And greetings to this great community.
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Old February 23rd, 2012, 07:03 AM   #2
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

Because you ask so many good -- and complex -- questions I'm going to plug my NEX FAMILY eBook. Although it covers the VG-10, it has a huge chapter on lenses and adaptors.

Fundamentally, mechanical-only adaptors don't send information to/from a NEX. The problem comes with -- as you foresaw -- aperture control. When I studied Minolta lenses, the older lenses that never assumed any connection to the camera were simplest to understand. But, see new adaptor below. It seems to have an aperture of some kind inside that allows you to use newer lenses that interact with a camera. I assume the lenses aperture is fully open.

As you might guess, during focusing, you want to open an aperture fully for minimum DOF. The NEX, when set to shutter-priority, will auto-adjust exposure -- if it can. In very bright light fully open at 1/50th a NEX may over-expose. [So you may need to use ND filters -- which you'll need anyway if you will be shooting for minimum DOF.] After focusing, you dial a smaller aperture. IF the adaptor is only adjusting blades you can NOT read the F-stop. :(

Beware that almost all reviews are for photographers. For example, photo lenses have click stops so adjusting while shooting isn't EZ.
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Old February 27th, 2012, 02:08 PM   #3
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

I posted that one wanted to focus "fully open". I should have one wants to focus "fully zoomed in." My bad.

Although the few words of adaptor description mention the inability to set aperture on newer Canon lenses -- as long as one set a fully manual lens fully open -- I can't see why this adaptor wouldn't work for old and new Canon lenses.

Of course, you will not know the F-stop you are setting.

Did you buy the adaptor yet?
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Old February 27th, 2012, 02:28 PM   #4
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

You need a smart adapter with canon lenses. There is not a lot of option in the moment. The most promisiong one is the Conurus/Metabones adapter: Sony NEX System : Canon EF Lens to Sony NEX Smart Adapter
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Old February 27th, 2012, 11:22 PM   #5
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

Out of stock right now. $400

http://conurus.com/product/sony-nex/ef-e-bm1-detail

AND

sonyalpharumors | Blog | Kipon EOS to NEX adapter with built in aperture control.
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Old February 28th, 2012, 07:32 AM   #6
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

You can put you on the wait list at conurus for the next batch which is scheduled for mid-march.

And I can assure you that you DON'T want an adapter with a built-in iris. I tried it. It dosen't control the aperture at all, it only cause severe vignette and unwanted ugly bokeh. The iris blade must be inside the lens, between specific lens elements. Not behind it.
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Old February 28th, 2012, 08:06 AM   #7
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

"it only cause severe vignette."

Actually it was tested and found this worry to not be founded.

The plain fact that any lens should never be stopped to near close. The tests-- as I remember -- showed the range from 2 to 5 was fine. I did not read the test for detail because I'm not going to buy one.

Did you personally test for "... unwanted ugly bokeh."?

I suspect that MIGHT be true, but claiming something to be fact without a test is bad form.

PS: I guess looking at the diameter of each position one can estimate the amount of light being cut FROM the F-stop of the lens. So for each lens I guess one could chart the f-stop for each setting.

It's very cheap so someone with a collection of Canon lenses should buy one, test, and post. You can return it.
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Old February 28th, 2012, 08:30 AM   #8
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

I have bought it and tested it (of course with only a few lens I have on hand, not all the lenses in the canon line) and the center is never affected, just the corners.
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Old February 28th, 2012, 11:33 AM   #9
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

One testet @:

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Old February 28th, 2012, 01:47 PM   #10
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

This is consistent with my own tests. But the NEX cam have bigger sensors, and the vignette effect is more severe.
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Old February 28th, 2012, 08:31 PM   #11
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Werner Graf View Post
Great find. Looks like with lenses under 200mm one can't adjust past "3".

And, the faster the lens, the more one can close, but of course the more one would need to close in bright light.

So the question is what is the F-stop adjustment at 1 through 3?

Were it 2 stops, then it MIGHT work for me if I had Canon lenses.

I use a lightmeter just like when shooting film.

For a shallow DOF, I let the amount of light guide to the amount of ND filtration needed -- and ACCEPTABLE -- with a Vario-ND filter (about 3-stops) to bring camera settings to 1/50th (e.g, 24fps) with an aperture setting starting 1-stop more closed than fully open. (With an F/2.8 lens I aim for f/4.)

I want to keep the aperture no larger than f/8 to keep the shallow DOF.

Since I find no visible difference with shutter-speeds from 1/30th to 1/60th I can tweek speed if necessary.

In super bright light, NV and India for example, I will have to break the rule and add a fixed ND filter to bring filtration to 6-7 stops.

The same procedure works even when I don't need shallow DOF. I then keep the f-stop between f/4 to f5.6 and f/8 to f11.

PS: Obviously, with a faster lens in bright light one needs to cut light more, but it looks like the adaptor allows more with faster lenses.


Bottom0line, a few stops of aperture adjustment with a few stops of ND adjustment with a stop of shutter adjustment is all I use.
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Old February 29th, 2012, 02:23 PM   #12
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

While I have a few Canon EF lenses that I wouldn't mind trying with the VG20, it seems a bit ridiculous to spend a lot of money for an adapter that seems to be less than satisfactory. Why not consider staying in manual mode and buy some good old Nikon or Pentax glass and add adapters from Ebay for about $ 15.00 each. For $ 400 and proper shopping on Ebay, you could come up with 3 or 4 decent primes or zoom lenses that will suit your purposes well.
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Old February 29th, 2012, 07:07 PM   #13
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

Chris, that's the route I've chosen. I have mostly manual Canon glass, either old FDs or EOS (Rokinon), just to avoid these issues. The one non-manual lens is the nifty-fifty 1.8, which will work just fine wide open (and hardly worth buying a $400 adapter for.

That said, guys with oodles of EOS electronic app glass will likely consider this adapter (flaws and all) to be a God-send.
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Old March 1st, 2012, 12:58 AM   #14
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Barcellos View Post
... it seems a bit ridiculous to spend a lot of money for an adapter that seems to be less than satisfactory.
Not sure why you say this. From the review, " I like that phrase he wrote: 'The adapter works as you’d expect with no lag, and OIS works fine. It really is like having a Canon mirrorless camera.' ”

Expensive it is!
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Old March 1st, 2012, 07:58 AM   #15
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Re: Canon lenses on Sony VG20?

It's the same price as the new Sony alpha adapter, less than half the price of the MTF adapter, and gives you more feature. The price is perfect IMO. And the newer filmware (02) seems to have fixed all of the first batch issues.
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