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Old January 9th, 2010, 06:43 AM   #1
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35mm adaptor or nanoflash?

If I wanted to produce a better image from my ex1r which should I purchase granted that I cannot purchase both.

My interest is making short and feature length films. But due to monetary reasons I will often be doing other projects in order to make money.

Thanks.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 07:04 AM   #2
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None is necessary to make money with the EX camera - you're lucky you have orders!

My advise: make some money first with the naked camera, then buy both :)
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Old January 9th, 2010, 07:09 AM   #3
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Nanoflash if you are supplying broadcasters. DOF unit if you have plenty of time to shoot an item. Neither if standard 35mbits is ok for client and most work will be run and gun.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 07:10 AM   #4
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fair enough lol. BUT which one would affect the image more? and in regard to the 35mm adaptor I see that you use the letus correct? which lenses do you use with it?
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Old January 9th, 2010, 07:12 AM   #5
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Of course, both affect the image - but the influenece of a 35mm adapter is more obvious to the eye.

Yes, I'm using the Letus, and can sincerely advise that you buy something else (like the RR Encore M2)...
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Old January 9th, 2010, 07:12 AM   #6
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This is a purely selfish reason. My work is fine with the 35mbs but When I do a feature length film I would like to get the best out of my camera. Sorry I wasnt very clear on that.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 08:39 AM   #7
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I answered one of your posts at another forum and held back with this since you didn't ask a "this or that" type question about the adapter. If I had my heart firmly set on an adapter, I'd only go with a spinner. Wait the extra week for the Blade to come in the post.

Really, really soul search as to whether you NEED the adapter for your work. A lot of fine footage out there shot on adapters would be equally fine without them because the story is good, lighting is done well and/or the scenery is captivating. I, for one, have grown tired of needless focus pulls and out of focus stuff simply because it can be done. I deployed my adapter rig this week to shoot interviews and found I liked the naked footage better. The out-of-focus background just didn't add anything to what was happening. Why?: because I took the time to set up the scene so the background was not distracting in the first place and I lit it properly.

There's a huge amount of hype (still) around adapters and the V-DSLRs. But will they honestly improve the product, that is the question we must ask. I bought into the adapter hype before learning about lighting and properly setting up interviews and scenes. It's a nice gadget and I like gadgets. But I think I'm benefiting more from my recent light purchase and taking more time to plan shots. Get lights first, if you don't have them.

Also, the adapter requires a boatload of light indoors. There's a reason why most of the pretty shorts are outdoors: there's ample light. In my experience, you'll need at least 2 good lights if you want to shoot anything indoors with an adapter.

If I could roll back the clock by 6 months, I'd skip the adapter, buy lights and wait for all this DSLR hoopla to settle down and they work out the moire, aliasing and codec issues.

Can't speak to Nanoflash. No one has complained of the images out of my "naked" EX-1. Spend the weekend watching some documentaries, Vimeo, shorts etc. My guess is there's more great footage shot without the adapter than with because people invested the time in the script, design and lighting and not the gadget.

Good luck.
Bob
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Old January 9th, 2010, 09:36 AM   #8
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This is an interesting discussion.

I have a 5DmkII and I use that when I need shallow DOF and a normal to wide angle lens. The 5D codec does very well when a large part of the frame is OOF, but it is terrible when everything needs to be sharp especially with lots of horizontal lines. The 5D also is wonderful in low light.

The EX cams with a NanoFlash are fantastic cameras, and the color quality and the lack of compression noise is unrivaled by anything else in this price class.

I often use the EXcams to shoot narrow DOF, for interviews etc. Just back up and use a good set of sticks. You need more room but the effect can be very nice.

A lot of times just slightly soft BG is nice and the EXcams can do this very easily in the normal to slight tele range. It is a good idea to have a good field monitor when shooting like that to make sure focus is right. You can cheat by focusing closer then subject and letting the slightly stopped down lens just barely bring subject into focus (be careful if you try this). I try never to use larger than f5.6 on my EX1R or EX3, best seems to be around f2.8.

My nickels worth. So I vote for Nanoflash and a 5DmkII or 7D for NDF.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 10:12 AM   #9
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I agree with Olaf, and also use the EX 1/3, an HDX 900 but really like to use he Canon 5DmkII.
The Letus made a nice image but was too cumbersome to use regularly. When you consider the price of all the rails mounts and plates to make the Letus really work well you'll find it adds up to less than the cost of the 5D.
The Nanoflash is wonderful and works particularly well on the HDX 900, making great images and giving me the redundancy of tape and CF cards.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 10:32 AM   #10
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Skip the adaptor. It eats up WAY too much light. For the same money as the adaptor, buy a Canon 5D M2 and lenses. (you have to buy 35mm lenses with the Letus anyway)

I've used ours since January and I'm tired of melting my talent just so I could stop-down 1-stop from shooting wide open (VERY shallow depth of field)
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Old January 9th, 2010, 11:03 AM   #11
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Oddly enough I've been doing similar evaluations for the same reasons. I've looked at adapters, vDSLRs and the Nanoflash to "up my game" and even though I can afford more than one of these at a time I have decided against all of them for the time being. Instead, I have focused on exploiting the capabilities of the EX-1 itself to get the DOF appropriate for the shot. I haven't really bought into the razor thin DOF craze and only see it as having limited artistic value. If you spend a lot of time watching movies and documentaries whether they be new or old rarely do you see razor thin DOF used. So, I've spent more time concentrating on the other elements of cinematography that make it look professional including lighting, composition, camera movement, editing and color grading.

I'm a lover of gadgets as well and as such would like nothing more than having a collection of lenses to play with but I'm waiting to see how things shake out in the next year or two with the marriage of FF35 sensors and pro video camera features. Scarlet is one option obviously but Canon has really kicked over the apple cart and I suspect its just a matter of time where we see this happen in a package for less than $10k including lenses. That may be crazy talk to some but even the most casual observer can see where the current trends are heading.

So my thoughts, spend time on studying film old and new and master the other elements of good cinematography. As far as gadgets go, I'm looking into camera movement devices next. I haven't settled on anything yet but I'm looking at dollies, jibs and steadicams. I too would recommend a monitor to help with focus. I just picked up a DP1 and am quite happy with what it does in terms of making my focus work more accurate. Just my two cents...
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Old January 9th, 2010, 11:28 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mitchell Lewis View Post
Skip the adaptor. It eats up WAY too much light. For the same money as the adaptor, buy a Canon 5D M2 and lenses. (you have to buy 35mm lenses with the Letus anyway)

I've used ours since January and I'm tired of melting my talent just so I could stop-down 1-stop from shooting wide open (VERY shallow depth of field)
I'm shocked to see you say this. I thought you were happy and productive with your Ultimate.

But I'm right there with you. My frustration is that it adds a level of complexity to mount-unmount-calibrate etc etc that takes the fun out of the whole process for me. I only have one camera, so going back and forth from adapter to naked is a PITA. And as you said, you need a LOT of light when filming indoors, so now you have to factor in the logistics of setting up a lighting kit every time you want to shoot.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 11:35 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Nelson View Post

So my thoughts, spend time on studying film old and new and master the other elements of good cinematography. As far as gadgets go, I'm looking into camera movement devices next. I haven't settled on anything yet but I'm looking at dollies, jibs and steadicams. I too would recommend a monitor to help with focus. I just picked up a DP1 and am quite happy with what it does in terms of making my focus work more accurate. Just my two cents...
Spot-on. I did it arse backwards, starting with the adapter and then learning about lighting and movement.

William: consider taking the money (the adapter kit you referenced at the other forum was $5k) and getting some lights {take a shoot over to my blog, I just wrote about this this morning...Robert Kerner’s Blog }and perhaps a nice dolly. Unless you have that stuff already. But I bet you'll find as others have mentioned here that there are other ways to get a great image without the adapter.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 11:35 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Kerner View Post
I answered one of your posts at another forum and held back with this since you didn't ask a "this or that" type question about the adapter. If I had my heart firmly set on an adapter, I'd only go with a spinner. Wait the extra week for the Blade to come in the post.

Really, really soul search as to whether you NEED the adapter for your work. A lot of fine footage out there shot on adapters would be equally fine without them because the story is good, lighting is done well and/or the scenery is captivating. I, for one, have grown tired of needless focus pulls and out of focus stuff simply because it can be done. I deployed my adapter rig this week to shoot interviews and found I liked the naked footage better. The out-of-focus background just didn't add anything to what was happening. Why?: because I took the time to set up the scene so the background was not distracting in the first place and I lit it properly.

There's a huge amount of hype (still) around adapters and the V-DSLRs. But will they honestly improve the product, that is the question we must ask. I bought into the adapter hype before learning about lighting and properly setting up interviews and scenes. It's a nice gadget and I like gadgets. But I think I'm benefiting more from my recent light purchase and taking more time to plan shots. Get lights first, if you don't have them.

Also, the adapter requires a boatload of light indoors. There's a reason why most of the pretty shorts are outdoors: there's ample light. In my experience, you'll need at least 2 good lights if you want to shoot anything indoors with an adapter.

If I could roll back the clock by 6 months, I'd skip the adapter, buy lights and wait for all this DSLR hoopla to settle down and they work out the moire, aliasing and codec issues.

Can't speak to Nanoflash. No one has complained of the images out of my "naked" EX-1. Spend the weekend watching some documentaries, Vimeo, shorts etc. My guess is there's more great footage shot without the adapter than with because people invested the time in the script, design and lighting and not the gadget.

Good luck.
Bob
Great Post, fantastic advice.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 11:38 AM   #15
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Bob: I do feel guilty with the money we spent on the adapter. I'm glad we did splurge for the relay lens. I still love the shallow DOF look, but the loss of light is a major pain. I'm sick of shooting wide open (and slightly out of focus)

I am sold on the shallow DOF look though. I'm normally shooting in doors and it really makes the talent pop. Without the adapter on the EX3 I still get a bit of blur in the background, but not enough to make the subject pop. This is especially a problem in small rooms.
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