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Sony NXCAM NEX-FS700 CineAlta
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Old February 3rd, 2013, 07:27 PM   #1
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Lens recommendations?

Ok, I don't want to break the bank, footage would go to Internet at 1080p.

Need to be able to shoot in very low light, such as candle light dinner settings at night outdoors.

Need to shoot very wide indoors.

Yet I hear the A-mount lenses through the Sony LA-EA2 adapter will autofocus far better employing phase detection to reduce focus hunting on moving subjects, as manual focus is not really in the cards for me.

Yet the LA-EA2 is supposed to kill one stop on the lens.

So if you had to buy a couple of lenses to satisfy these shooting condition requirements, which would you use?
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Old February 4th, 2013, 12:52 AM   #2
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Re: Lens recommendations?

The Rokinon/Bower/Samyung "Cine" lenses with declicked iris at T1.5 are good for the price. If you get Nikon or Canon mount you can use with a cheap adapter for T1.5 or get Metabones Speedbooster adapter and gain an extra stop of light.
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Old February 4th, 2013, 07:36 AM   #3
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Aren't those manual focus lenses?
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Old February 4th, 2013, 12:39 PM   #4
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Manual lenses are good! :)

The Sony/Zeiss e-mount lenses are great for 'focus by wire' and IS, and do the 'tap to focus' trick on the FS700 which can be a life saver. However, they're a pig to drive manually, so you end up with two lenses: one in auto, one for manual... and I'd rather start with the manual.

I'll give a shout-out for the Metabones adaptor and EOS lenses, but a colleague swears by Nikon mount with an adaptor, and have them de-clicked as Tim recommends - by far the better 'long term' investment.

LE-EA2 is (by and large) for auto-focus in slomo - very specialist thing, very handy, rather expensive if it's just an adaptor to use lenses from eBay.

Sorry to be so predictable, but I'll second the vote for Rokinon/Samyang 1.4s and add the Tokina 11-16 2.8 for good measure.

One thing I can add is never to get suckered into the Canon 50mm 1.2 L of FD vintage. It's not able to generate reasonable quality until f2, and at that, what's the point? Get a Sigma 50mm 1.4 and be happy. Happier than the Canon 50mm 1.4, anyway. (grins, ducks and runs)
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Old February 4th, 2013, 12:54 PM   #5
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Re: Lens recommendations?

My concern with manually focusing is it requires good vision which I do not have so much anymore and at times am doing work in outdoor intense sunlight or after dark with ambient light. Then you have to pull focus on moving subjects too. I think that is all too much for me.
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Old February 4th, 2013, 01:00 PM   #6
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Re: Lens recommendations?

How are you getting on with peaking?

I set mine to low, and red. It's not foolproof, but it's better than nowt.

It has to be said, I spent a bit of time with my cameras and my chickens in Rocky Balboa style, trying to follow focus and looking at the results (the office is next to the chickens). You get to see how what peaking 'thinks' is in focus and where peaking *does* do the focus.

That, and of course the fabulous punch-in focus modes.

The Sony E lenses do an elegant face-track with focus, but your talent has to move equally elegantly (aka slowly). It's easily confused. Only the LE-EA2 with its phase detection can make the split-second moment-by-moment decisions on which way to yank the focus. And, yes, you pay for that. Sigh. :)
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Old February 4th, 2013, 06:47 PM   #7
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Hi Dave I am just the same as you my eyes are nowere near like they used to be, but honestly the Samyang 1.5 cine lens yes it is manual focus and manual iris but for filming at nite in very low lite situations its brilliant.So as to make focusing easier i stuck a Zacuto evf on top of my 700 just ideal, The lens is very well priced i can manage to focus by useing peaking but i don't always get it spot on, Wide angle not sure i want one myself.Thanks Wilf.
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Old February 4th, 2013, 10:53 PM   #8
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Wilf, it seems like $500 for a lens, then $2000 for the Zacuto EVF is more expensive than a fast autofocus lens, so are there any advantages to such a combination? Also, It is one thing to have a static shot and you pull focus back a forth, over and undershooting till it looks good...its another thing to have a moving subject walking in the frame and having to track focus it. In that circumstance, you don't have the luxury of over and under shooting your focus till you happy.
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Old February 5th, 2013, 12:47 AM   #9
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Looking at your requirements, may I suggest a couple lenses that won't break the bank.

-Sony SEL 10-18mm f/4 for moderate to good light wide indoor/outdoor shots
-Sony SEL 50mm f/1.8 or (depending on your preferred FoV) Sony SEL 35mm f/1.8 for poor light shots

Please don't laugh them off. Though mechanically they are not up to the usual cinematography field standards, optically I'm sure they are good enough for your intended delivery. They are fast-handling with an effective image stabilization system, silent and smooth autofocusing. What I mean by smooth is that even if the AF system may not be very fast on the FS700, the transition into and out of focus should be very gentle, not fickle or quickly or abruptly locking onto or leaving the targets like most DSLRs do. They are very light and normally compatible with all the NEX system camera movie modes including AF with fine-tuned manual assist, manual focus peaking and expand focus once you touch the lenses' focusing ring in manual focus mode among others.

I own a compact NEX-5N and have an FS100 for work but only have the cheapo kit lens 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 and the 50mm f/1.8 used on both cameras. Like I said optically speaking they are not going to win any award but no other lens at any price is going to beat them in terms of handling on Sony NEX video cameras.

Sony Alpha DSLR lenses' autofocus via the LE-EA2 phase detection adapter is usually faster but it's not completely silent and the transition isn't as smooth as the AF on the NEX lenses. You also will have to do away with image stabilization with any lens on the LE-EA2.
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Old February 5th, 2013, 07:49 AM   #10
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Hi again Dave my Zacuto cost me not much more than the lens. personaly i don't think any autofocus lens will focus everytime on what you want it to i think it depends how critical the job is and what you are filming .When i use the stock lens which is very good at auto focus which i use a lot but unfortunatly its not good in low lite. I have got quite a few lenses but hav'nt got any alpha lenses so i am not sure how good they are, I watched a review on vemio on fs700 the guy was explaining the differences between e-mount face detection and a-mount phase detection he had the camera set up filming him as he was on his own every now and again the focus would go off and the room was well lit so how good they are in low lite i don't know Dave if you find a good low lite autofocus lens that works well put it back on as a post because i would like one myself Thanks Wilf.
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Old February 5th, 2013, 11:31 AM   #11
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Re: Lens recommendations?

which one for the FS700 would be best? Sony 70-200mm f/2.8 G Alpha A-Mount Telephoto Zoom Lens vs canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Telephoto Zoom

Metabones adapter for Canon, but what needed if bought the SONY version 70-200mm? Which lens best for FS700?
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Old February 5th, 2013, 09:40 PM   #12
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Not familiar with both lenses but one thing I can say for sure is the Canon lens' AF via the Metabones will be next to useless but the in-lens stabilization via the adapter should work OK. If your work mainly requires manual focusing, the Canon is probably be fine.
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Old February 6th, 2013, 12:07 PM   #13
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Actually does the FS700 with kit 18-200mm lens now have servo control from camera?
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Old February 6th, 2013, 07:28 PM   #14
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Re: Lens recommendations?

No it does'nt the stock lens is manual zoom,but you can buy seperatley a sony 18-200 power zoom but for it to work and zoom by the camera the camera needs a firmware update then bobs your uncle it works. Thanks Wilf.
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Old February 6th, 2013, 08:06 PM   #15
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Re: Lens recommendations?

Just as a point of interest the new 18-200 power zoom when you see it advertised such as at BH PHOTO the discription as to what it comes with states it comes with front and rear lens caps. does anyone know if you can buy a SONY EA50 type lens hood for it, putting the lens cap on and off the stock lens is a rite pain, Thanks Wilf.
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