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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old April 17th, 2011, 02:41 PM   #1
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EX3 and tele zoomlens

I use my EX with Nikon prime dslr lenses for wildlife filming. 80-200 F/2.8, 300 F/4 and 400 F/3.5. I would however like to work with a decent video zoomlens of up to let's say 300mm in order to make proper zooms. A larger zoom range will also make it easier to locate the subject and then zoom in for actual capturing. A 2/3" lens would be fine, so it will also keep its value when moving to a 2/3" camera. However, when looking at the quality zoom lenses of Canon and Fujinon I end up with prices equivalent of that of high end cars. Does anyone have a suggestion for a good quality video zoomlens of up to 300mm (or more) in the price range between 5,000-10,000 euros max?
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Old April 18th, 2011, 06:37 AM   #2
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

You could try to locate a second hand lens, but I think you will get the best results (for the money) with the Nikon lenses you are using.
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Old April 18th, 2011, 07:48 AM   #3
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Nikon used to make a 50-300 mm manual zoom which makes it a lot easier to find the subject than is the case for a 300 mm prime. I have one that would benefit from some lubrication and the results it produces can be quite good. However it is a heavy lens that I would not use without a support. They are still available second hand.
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Old April 18th, 2011, 08:06 AM   #4
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Lenses with a focal length of less than 85mm do not work that well on the EX3. The Sony stock lens at full magnification has roughly the same magnification as an 85mm Nikkor lens when fitted to the EX3.

The only exception to this, as far as I know, is the 55mm Micro-Nikkor lens. This lens is useful for extreme close up work.
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Old April 18th, 2011, 10:25 AM   #5
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Hi Cees,

I don't use an EX3 (1/2" sensor), but instead I use a Canon XLH1s (1/3" sensor).

I also use the 80-200 Nikon zoom, but in addition I use the Nikon 80-400 zoom. The Nikon lenses at medium to full extension work well at f numbers between f2.8 and f6.3. At higher f numbers the lenses become increasingly less sharp, even when racked back to 80mm. So a set of neutral density filters is important.

If I can get close to the subjects, I prefer to use the Canon stock lens because of the greater ability to follow focus especially if the animals are moving so as to increase or decrease the distance between themselves and the camera. If not, the huge reach of the Nikon zooms is worth the extra hassle.

I have used the Nikon 60macro lens for extreme close up. It is amazingly sharp, but even with the exaggerated telephoto effect, the distance to the subject is very short. I find the 80-200 zoom works very well on extension tubes for close-ups where you need a bit more separation between your camera and the subject.

Hope that helps,

Alan
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Old April 19th, 2011, 03:49 AM   #6
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Thanks for the input of all of you. My Nikon approach seems to be okay. I am surprised however that the ex3 comes with a reasonably good lens of up to about 80mm for an exceptional low price, and that there seems to be nothing like a good video zoom in the 80 - 300mm range. Not even for as much money as the whole ex3 with lens alltogether.
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Old May 7th, 2011, 01:56 PM   #7
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Doe anyone have experience with the Nikon 80-400mm on a EX3? I would like to know how it compares to the stock lens. I use a Nikon 80-200/2.8, a 300/4.0 and a 400/3.5. Would it meet the quality of these lenses. And finally, does someone have experience with the Nikon 200-400/4.0? Much more expensive than the 80-400, so I'd like to know if it pays back in superior image quality.
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Old April 25th, 2012, 04:41 AM   #8
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

I want to give my question above another try. Anyone?
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Old April 25th, 2012, 06:40 AM   #9
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Hi Cees,

I do not have the 80-400 but a friend of mine with an EX3 has one. He uses it for wildlife videoshots, combined with the stock lens of the EX3 and the Nikon performs very well indeed. Of course,in full tele, it delivers less contrast than the Sony lens, but that is easily corrected in post. The only problem is that he has a hard time finding a tripod that is sturdy enough to use the lens at it's full tele focal length. Let's not forget that's the 35mm -equivalent of a 2000 mm lens approximately!

best
Luc
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Old April 25th, 2012, 07:57 AM   #10
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Hi Cees,

Last time you asked this question I suggested trying one of the old manual Nikon 50-300 mm lenses. Did you ever try one and if so how did you rate it?
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Old April 26th, 2012, 05:41 AM   #11
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Re: EX3 and tele zoomlens

Luc,
thanks for the answer. So you basically say the 80-400 holds up well compared to the stock lens.

Alastair,
I did not manage to find or try a second hand 50-300 in Holland.
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