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Old December 6th, 2010, 12:07 PM   #1
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EX3 1/2" lens options

Hi Everyone

We have recently tested a EX3/Nanoflash combination and we were very impressed with it but I did feel the stock lens, while sharp enough below f5.6, does not perform well with regard to CA. Certainly, even the XF305 gives much better results in this area (probably due to internal electronic compensation as much as the 'L' glass factor). Does anyone here have actual experience with any of the standard 1/2" ENG HD lens options? I'm just looking for reassurance that it is possible to tame the CA much better using more expensive glass. If we were talking about 2/3" I could simply rent some different lenses and see for myself but it's very difficult to find 1/2" HD lenses to rent easily. Also, I'm trying to keep the lens cost in proportion with the camera.

I've seen the Fujinon XS17X5.5BRM-M38, which is about the same cost as the EX3 itself, so within the bounds of reason!

Has anyone had any success with a lens like this?

Thanks

Tony
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Old December 6th, 2010, 12:32 PM   #2
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Unfortunately there are really no inexpensive 1/2" HD lenses available, the EX3 stock lens is very good for a $2.000.00 lens.

You have to spend, in the US, $8,000.00 for anything better new.

Now the EX3 will accept 2/3" glass with an adapter, I think the adapter is about $1,800.00. With that you could then rent anything you want when you need better optics. And there are more used 2/3" lenses on the market than 1/2".

I have seen a few people using older SD 2/3" glass for HD with pretty good results. But definitely do some extensive testing before buying SD glass.

Good luck, let us know what you come up with.
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Old December 6th, 2010, 03:12 PM   #3
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Thanks, Olof! I think the lens I mentioned must be around $8k in the States.

I think you're right that renting 2/3" lenses might well be the better bet. Also, a used 2/3" lens for $8k might well be a better buy in the end because it would have a life beyond the EX3. I'm beginning to think any additional money spent on gear to own would be better put towards a Letus relay and Ultimate. That way, we could use a lot of our great stills lenses...

I'll definitely post any findings here in the future if we do decide to buy an EX3.
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Old December 6th, 2010, 06:57 PM   #4
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Don't get upset. I love my EX3 and EX1R and I have no plans to sell them.

But I just ordered a Panasonic AF100. It is a bargain $5,000.00. And it will take pretty much any lens ever made, and it has a 4/3" chip. Personally I have a lot of old Canon FL and FD glass that is really good. Nikon glass and Canon L's will work as well with the right adapters.

Just a thought. I think the industry is really changing. Sony has a number of new cams like the F3 ($13,000.00) and possible a $6,000.00 version as well next summer.

I just ordered a 25mm f.95 Voigtlander for $850.00. A real bargain., and a wonderful lens.

These are just my thoughts, I may be wrong these new cams may not be great for your style of shooting. But I am not investing in any 1/2" or 2/3" glass at the moment.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 05:42 AM   #5
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Hi Anthony,

I've had the Fujinon XS17X5.5BRM lens combined with my EX3 for just over 18 months and it really transforms the pictures from the EX3 onto another level. The depth and clarity have to be seen - the footage is beautiful. You also get a lovely silky smooth zoom (a problem on the stock lens). The only possible drawback is that it makes the camera a bit front-heavy. Anyway, I'm used to it now and the stock lens has been in a box for over a year now.

Yes, it's expensive, but it does truly transform this camera.

Cheers, Martin.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 06:13 AM   #6
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I can echo Martin's comments exactly. He has summed it up very well.
Until I sold my EX3 last year I always used my Fujinon HSs18x5.5 lens -- and it transformed the camera.

Although I was happy with the image quality of the stock lens, the ergonomics of that lens left a lot to be desired. Having a real broadcast lens on the EX3 allowed me to shoot things and work in ways that I could never have done with the stock lens. I felt like shackles had been taken off.
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Old December 7th, 2010, 09:56 AM   #7
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Thanks, guys!

We've pre-ordered an AF100 as well, so I'm looking forward to that. The only issue with it as far as I can see is that it is difficult to find a good general purpose zoom, which we can use for documentary work. If that Birger mount of Canon lenses actually works, then a 24-70 is a start (with the 2x crop factor) but I'm not sure it's the right camera for the kind of work we do.

I'm thinking EX3/Nano/better lens or HPX371 plus better lens. It's a shame about the form factor of the XF305 (just can't live with a compact handheld camcorder) because that would be fabulous for us with a shoulder mount and the EVF in the right place!

Anyway, it's great to hear that you guys do not regret upgrading your EX3 lenses. Do you notice a significant improvement with regard to CA?
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Old December 7th, 2010, 11:27 AM   #8
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On my F330 I use an old 1/2" SD lens originally built for the DSR-300, The Canon YH12x4.8 KRS-A

Canon BCTV Lenses: Portable: YH12x4.8 IRS-A / KRS-A

It's a great and solid built lens and I am very happy with the result, even in HD. They sell secondhand for around GBP 1500.
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