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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old March 31st, 2009, 03:30 PM   #1
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fisheye?

I am interested in getting a fisheye for the ex3, any recommendations?
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Old April 1st, 2009, 07:45 AM   #2
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I have this Fisheye for my EX1 and EX3.
FISHEYE HD ADAPTER EX1/EX3 - Schneider Optics

Pretty nice in the right situations when you don't mind barrel distortion.
You can only zoom about 20% and then you get a lot of vignetting.

You also have to keep it VERY clean.
I'd buy it again.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 07:48 AM   #3
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Pretty nice in the right situations when you don't mind barrel distortion.
Don't mind barrel distortion? That's what fisheyes are all about Doug.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 08:05 AM   #4
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You know that, and I know that, but you'd be surprised how many people don't understand what they are buying. It's always better to be clear.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 09:43 AM   #5
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I agree with Doug I have the same lens adapter and it is great in close up action shots. But yes check to make sure it is clean every time.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 09:53 AM   #6
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thanks guys. I ordered the same lens last night. I am (thankfully) aware that there is barrel distortion, thats why I was looking for one, just wasnt sure if there was more than one I should be looking at.

good to know about keeping it clean, I will keep an eye on that.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 06:18 PM   #7
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I have this lens and I love it. The Century website says it's .45X and the B&H site says it's .55X? Same mfg code #. I'm confused.

I use the lens quite a bit because I like to go wide. Of course there's barrell distortion, the exaggeration depends on your angle. A couple drawbacks is that to use it you must use auto-focus and we all know the EX1 is not always the best at auto focusing, especially with any speed. If a shot is critical, double check to make sure you got the focus right because there have been times I got back to my studio only to realize it blurred on me at the wrong times. It usually focuses fine, but you definitely have to pay attention, especially with lots of movement, and I'm always on the go.

The other drawback is that the corners are a bit soft... the corners aren't dark, they just aren't sharp. I normally don't notice it too much but if you're shooting something with detail in the whole scene, it's noticeable. I was hiking in the redwoods last weekend and I noticed the trees and branches got mushy in the corners and side edges. The top and bottom of the frame seem fine, just the side edges and corners. I don't see it as a big problem though because the edges and corners are pretty distorted anyway, and with a fisheye you usually have an interesting subject in the main composition to keep the viewers attention.

Overall I like the adapter. The perspective is very cool. The glass is flippin' big (in circumference) but not too heavy. I use it much more than my Sony .8x wide angle for the type of shooting I do. At least so far. I like the Sony .8x too, it's just pretty darn heavy for only 20% more field of view.
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Old April 1st, 2009, 06:23 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Buck Forester View Post
Overall I like the adapter. The perspective is very cool. The glass is flippin' big (in circumference) but not too heavy. I use it much more than my Sony .8x wide angle for the type of shooting I do. At least so far. I like the Sony .8x too, it's just pretty darn heavy for only 20% more field of view.
i have the .8 as well. I pretty much leave it on, unless I am outdoors and its super sunny, then the mattebox goes on. I love it because its zoom through.

I knew the fisheye wasnt, but didnt know about autofocus, whats up with that? how come you cant manual focus?
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Old April 1st, 2009, 06:45 PM   #9
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Good question, maybe someone much more techy than myself can answer that one.

Here's from the Century site:

"Focusing on the Sony PMW-EX1/EX3

Like all fisheye adapters, the Century Fisheye uses the macro feature of the camera to achieve focus. Be sure the macro mode is enabled and the focus gear is engaged to auto focus, rotate ring 180 degrees.

NOTE: The full manual focus mode will not allow the adapter to focus and therefore CANNOT be used in conjunction with wide adapters and Fisheyes"
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Old April 2nd, 2009, 04:45 PM   #10
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I also have the the Century adapter everybody here is talking about. It's a good versatile lens, fairly clean. However the barrel distortion is a given, it's the CA at the edges that I'm a bit sensitive to, but most people wouldn't notice it. For what it is and the cost it's a good thing to have, along with a less extreme wide angle, like a .7x.
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Old April 3rd, 2009, 07:56 PM   #11
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Wide Angle Lens Smarter Than Me

First let me give a big shout out to Ian - how ya doing dude? Jay Lee here (gotta use my full name some other Jay, James, and Jason Lee beat me to the punch here), Haven't seen you since you left the Big Deuce, hope you are well!

Anyways I just purchased an EX1 and various accoutrement including a Century .6 Wide Angle adapter, which is not acting at all like I'd expected. I was ready to send it back until I read the thread here and I'd like to see if the knowledgable guys here wouldn't mind helping me with my apparent cranial rectal inversion.

First of all I am hoping to use the lens in indoor semi-low light situations, but the iris needs to be stepped down significantly too far in order to get any focal sharpness. I remember a bit of focal/depth of field theory from high school photography but this is ridiculous, I'm not shooting day for night here!

I have set the camera to auto focus, turned the macro on, made sure not to zoom in, and turned on the wide angle conversion setting in the menu. However I'm still not getting a usable image. I've used wide angle converters on my PD-170's and never had such significant issues. Am I expecting too much out of this lens? I'm I missing some huge basic step?

Needing a clue- J.Lee
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Old April 3rd, 2009, 08:40 PM   #12
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Yep, it was cranial rectal inversion!

I forgot to pull the focus ring out to allow for auto focusing.

OOPS!!

Anyways, Hi Ian!
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Old April 3rd, 2009, 09:38 PM   #13
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JAY! good to hear from you. awesome that you are rocking the ex cam as well. glad you got the lens figured out, the camera takes a bit of time to get used to but its crazy fun to use once you have it all sorted out!
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Old April 4th, 2009, 10:22 AM   #14
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Jay,

I also forgot to mention. I dont think the .6 is a zoom through, so maybe there are some issues with that as well in regards to the lack of sharpness? I have the sony .8 as well, and love that thing. havent had any issues.
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Old April 4th, 2009, 01:04 PM   #15
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Thanks Ian

The main issue was not having the camera set properly, but yeah, you only get about 15-20% "zoomability." Which make sense give the purpose of the lens, but it sure is hard to break the habit of pushing all the way in to set focus!!

Tomorrow I get to spend all day playing with it in a studio setting, recording a song with a friend. We've started an "AV club" at a studio that allows us to play with the space, lights, and green wall for free... as long as it is for non-commercial/learning purposes.

Off to make my shot Sheet!

Take Care-JLee
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