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Sony XDCAM PMW-F3 CineAlta
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Old June 6th, 2015, 01:21 PM   #1
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Sony F3 and Sony SCL X18X140 lens test

Choosing lenses for large sensor cameras has been an overwhelming task for me. What do I choose and why do I choose it?

I decided the only way to choose was to actually try before I buy and I was lucky enough to get a demo model of the Sony SCL X18X140 power zoom lens for the Sony F3 on loan.

Shooting with it I realized I had to to a test both indoors and outdoors.

The following resulted all of the sudden in a lens test shot for a magazine called Monitor, the leading magazine for the professional branch in Scandinavia. I never did go to any film school so I take this as a huge testament from the professionals I am working alongside in this business.

The film was shot in and around my farm and I was pleasantly surprised with the performance of the lens.

Shot with mr Doug Jensens recommended picture profile.

Please watch in full HD.
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Old June 11th, 2015, 10:29 AM   #2
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Re: Sony F3 and Sony SCL X18X140 lens test

I've been looking at this lens for a while now but can't hire one from where I am.
How did it handle?
Would you buy one?

Andreas
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Old June 11th, 2015, 04:50 PM   #3
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Re: Sony F3 and Sony SCL X18X140 lens test

Hi Andreas.
The lens handled really well. If you have ever used a Sony EX1 or EX3, the lens is almost identical in terms of use and handling. Except that the lens extracts and there is a significant light loss when zooming in.

The shot where I throw silage to the rams was shot at 18db gain and zoomed in. It is not a particularly good low light performer but not too bad either. However I do feel that the Sony FS700 I used to own was better in low light,even with the 18-800 power zoom lens attached to it.

The combination of the F3 and the SCLX18X140 is heavy and feels substantial. It is a good all-round lens which works a treat outdoors but indoors you will need some more light. It does not come close to my Sony A7s, but what does?

I am a documentarian and it is not a run and gun combination. Very good on a tripod though. I am actually torn myself about this lens. It is the only lens Sony is currently offering with this zoom range and if most of your work is outdoors and on a tripod it is really good. If you are like me and chances are you will have to sometimes depend on available lights, then it is OK if you don`t zoom in too much. If I were too choose I would rather spend my money of the Sony FS7 and Selp 18-200 power zoomlens. I haven`t tried it myself buy it should make for a better zoom combination. The E- mount 18-200 powerzoom lens is actually surprisingly very good and I have used it on several paying jobs.

However on the Sony european website it states that Sony has discontinued this lens. SCL-Z18X140 (SCLZ18X140) : Product Overview : Other : Sony Professional

Could there be a new offering around the corner?
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Old June 12th, 2015, 08:56 AM   #4
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Re: Sony F3 and Sony SCL X18X140 lens test

I tested this lens before potentially renting one for an international trip. I'm REALLY glad I did, because I passed on renting it.

Maybe it's just because I'm not as young and spry as I used to be...but this lens is too heavy for an every day run and gun lens. If all I needed to do was shoot it off the tripod in well lit situations...it would be a different story.

Pros: price, familiarity of use from other EX lenses, video quality.

Cons: weight; slowness of the lens (high f-stops); lens bazookas badly when zoomed, so tough to use with a matte box and filters.
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