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Old November 30th, 2007, 06:54 PM   #1
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35mm Adapter - Yes, another thread no doubt, but

I presume this is probably the nine thousandth thread made on this topic, but I'm not asking 'how to make one' here; instead I'm asking, is it really as easy as 'they' say?

I've looked on Youtube and SO many people seem to have made 35mm adapters and instruct on how to do it as if it's a piece of cake. It really doesn't look it.

"Buy these specialist things and smash the glass out of these filters and glue this perfectly and get the distance perfect depending on the lens and put some clay around the focussing screen and make a perfect hole in the lens cover" etc etc

Then there's rods to make, and so on. It just seems so DIFFICULT.

Does anybody know if there will ever be a 35mm adapter made for the Sony A1? I'm annoyed that they haven't made one for these cameras with smaller lenses because I'm sure there's a big enough market for them.

I'm at that point now where I would probably just PAY someone to make me one, because there's no chance I'd manage. Haha.
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Old November 30th, 2007, 07:44 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Jonny Brady View Post
I presume this is probably the nine thousandth thread made on this topic, but I'm not asking 'how to make one' here; instead I'm asking, is it really as easy as 'they' say?

I've looked on Youtube and SO many people seem to have made 35mm adapters and instruct on how to do it as if it's a piece of cake. It really doesn't look it.

"Buy these specialist things and smash the glass out of these filters and glue this perfectly and get the distance perfect depending on the lens and put some clay around the focussing screen and make a perfect hole in the lens cover" etc etc

Then there's rods to make, and so on. It just seems so DIFFICULT.

Does anybody know if there will ever be a 35mm adapter made for the Sony A1? I'm annoyed that they haven't made one for these cameras with smaller lenses because I'm sure there's a big enough market for them.

I'm at that point now where I would probably just PAY someone to make me one, because there's no chance I'd manage. Haha.
Regardless of your camera, there is an adapter for every model. Technically any adapter would work with any camera, you just need achromats and spacer rings. The Brevis has been used extensively with the HV20 even; quite a small camera.

I would say yes, it really is that easy, but this is coming from someone who enjoys tinkering with optics and I have a feeling those who attempt to build one come from the same background of interest. They would say, like me, that "it's so easy!" because most of the process is actually kind of fun. To us anyway.

If you do not enjoy this kind of tinkering, do not make your own. Count on "tinkering" with it long after you have built it; it will come unaligned, glue will fall apart, distances between optics will change mysteriously. It's the nature of the beast.

The A1 is not a particularly small camera in the scheme of things; cameras much smaller than it have been used with 35mm adapters with plenty of success.

In fact, some would argue that the smaller camcorders with smaller diameter lens openings get a better picture out of the adapter; sparing the optical technobabble, there is usually less vignetting and an overall brighter image.
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Old December 1st, 2007, 04:22 AM   #3
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Regardless of your camera, there is an adapter for every model. Technically any adapter would work with any camera, you just need achromats and spacer rings. The Brevis has been used extensively with the HV20 even; quite a small camera.

I would say yes, it really is that easy, but this is coming from someone who enjoys tinkering with optics and I have a feeling those who attempt to build one come from the same background of interest. They would say, like me, that "it's so easy!" because most of the process is actually kind of fun. To us anyway.

If you do not enjoy this kind of tinkering, do not make your own. Count on "tinkering" with it long after you have built it; it will come unaligned, glue will fall apart, distances between optics will change mysteriously. It's the nature of the beast.

The A1 is not a particularly small camera in the scheme of things; cameras much smaller than it have been used with 35mm adapters with plenty of success.

In fact, some would argue that the smaller camcorders with smaller diameter lens openings get a better picture out of the adapter; sparing the optical technobabble, there is usually less vignetting and an overall brighter image.
ahh yes, I did some more research and was astonished to discover that yes, it was compatible with the A1. And well within my price range when including the spacer rings (what's an achromat?) and rods. Something like $740. Willing to pay that for quality, heh.

Only thing I won't have is the matte box, but perhaps I can make my own, it's not that difficult.

Thanks
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Old December 1st, 2007, 08:48 AM   #4
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Right, I've been looking at the redrockmicro one, and it all looks lovely jubbly and at $550 it's a "steal". For me, anyway, since that's... £275.

But I'm interested to know if there are any other models out there that people recommend over this one, and if anybody out there has this model and what they think of it etc.

(looking to use it with a Sony A1)

Thanks
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Old December 1st, 2007, 04:22 PM   #5
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letus just released their new letus35 mini. it's specifically designed for smaller cameras with 37mm & 42mm threads.
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Old December 1st, 2007, 07:10 PM   #6
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letus just released their new letus35 mini. it's specifically designed for smaller cameras with 37mm & 42mm threads.
GOD no way can I afford $1,100. I think if I'm gonna buy, I'll stick to the M2.

However I am considering building one, well, asking my Dad to build one for me because he's good with stuff like that - but what I can't figure out at all is how to get the image to flip back the right way up again when operating. How would you do this?

By the way, is the M2 powered? If so, why?
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 12:15 AM   #7
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GOD no way can I afford $1,100. I think if I'm gonna buy, I'll stick to the M2.
Then you can't afford the M2 either. M2 requires a lens mount and an achromat at the very least, in addition to that $550 item you're referring to. The M2 also requires a rod support system. So bottom-line price for a functioning M2 is more like $1k.

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However I am considering building one, well, asking my Dad to build one for me because he's good with stuff like that - but what I can't figure out at all is how to get the image to flip back the right way up again when operating. How would you do this?

By the way, is the M2 powered? If so, why?
You need a complicated mirror relay system that so far only a few companies have developed. The Letus35 mini has this mirror system.

The M2, like all adapters, is powered because the ground glass inside the adapter must be rotated at a high speed so the grain is not seen by the camera.
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 10:09 AM   #8
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For the M2, I amounted it to about $640 - then again, that wasn't counting an 'achromat' because I don't know what it is - I was going to make the rods myself. Not difficult, really.

Although I noticed on loads of user setups, most of them that is, they used monitors. Upside-down. So does this mean the M2 doesn't flip it?

As for the ground-glass, I have no idea what that's for... unless... that's what flips the image...

My brother gave me the idea of buying a cheap 35mm camera, taking it apart and adapting it into... well, an adapter, by putting one of those EE-A focussing screens where the film would be, and then sealing it all off and having the camcorder film that. I thought this would be a good idea, but then I thought of a problem;

Apparently the shutter is on the actual lens, which makes me think, well, on these adapters, homemade ones especially, how is this kept open? D'you just... modify it so it stays open all the time?

As for flipping the image, I figured the simple solution would just be to rotate the camera screen so it's pointing upwards, affix a mirror on it at 45 degrees, then put a shade over it and voila. Flipped.

EDIT> Ahh, so that's what an achromat is. Why does that have to be bought seperately? How much do they cost? Sorry for so many questions...

OH AND, does back-focussing come into this at all?

Last edited by Guest; December 2nd, 2007 at 10:55 AM.
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 10:58 AM   #9
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It has to be bought separately because Red Rock didn't decide to include it in the base package. I don't know why, lots of other companies do.

The ground glass is the surface inside the adapter that the SLR lens projects it's image onto. Your camera then films this image.
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 01:12 PM   #10
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This works pretty well and is cheap/simple to build, no complicated anything on it...I built mine out of scrap wood I had laying around and a bunch of bolts, springs and wingnuts to make it all adjustable without driving myself insane...

http://www.mediachance.com/dvdlab/dof/

Instructions start on the second page.

You'll need to build rods, I used two blocks of wood with holes drilled and two 15mm aluminum rods 3 feet long I threaded them myself to save tons of money by just buying a die for it. If you want them to be industry standard, you have to put them a certain distance apart, but if not just make them even. One of the blocks on each end and you've got rods.

I attach my stuff to them with U-Bolts. Works like a champ. The rods cost < $20 to make, the 35mm adapter cost < $15 to make. I had a lens already, so I bought a back cap to destroy for it ($3) and I'm good to go at < $50. I haven't shot with it yet as I'm still trying to figure out how to mate the system to my tripod and working on getting better, less grainy image quality from it...and the minimum focal distance on the XL1s sux as you stop the iris down...even with diopter lenses (magnifying glasses with filter threads). The adapter has to be about 2 feet in front of the camera (which an achromat would fix, but I'm looking for other options.

I made an adapter for nikon lenses using a body cap for the XL1s and the back cap from a nikon lens...and some JB weld. My back focus is off slightly, but it works like a champ (great picture too...really telephoto due to the small chip size 50mm lens = 600ish on this camera?) This will allow me to have the unit closer and get a picture off of it that I can use, I'll have to put an 18mm on there though to be able to get a wider shot of the GG on it).
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 01:47 PM   #11
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Hmm... ah right so that's what the glass is for... can't you just use a focussing screen, that ee-a type? Or is that grainy?

And TWO FEET? That's... odd...

I am lost now as to what an achromat does... I thought it just flipped the image... or does it... I don't understand why you need two feet....

That website says the image is also horizontally flipped... why though? Surely not, if you film from the REAR of the projection...

EDIT: Ahhh course, it'll flip ALL ways won't it, not just vertically...

Sorry and just another thing, the achromat, it seems to only come in 55mm or 72mm... and I can't find on the M2 site where you'd get adapters for 37mm thread cameras...

arrrgh this is so confusing
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 02:29 PM   #12
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achromat magnifies the image without distortion as straight magnifiers cause. It pairs a concave and a convex lens to do funky things with the light which increases the distance the light travels while reducing the actual distance it has to travel (really odd physics stuff) allowing the adapter closer to the camera, an achromat would solve my distance problem. But longer rods are much cheaper than an achromat.
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 02:46 PM   #13
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achromat magnifies the image without distortion as straight magnifiers cause. It pairs a concave and a convex lens to do funky things with the light which increases the distance the light travels while reducing the actual distance it has to travel (really odd physics stuff) allowing the adapter closer to the camera, an achromat would solve my distance problem. But longer rods are much cheaper than an achromat.
Right, I did reply with something different but I've decided to scrap the idea of getting an M2 and get a letus35 mini instead, purely because it cuts out SO MUCH crap (getting a monitor, and loads of seperate parts etc). Plus it's better quality.

I'm just gonna have to work out now how to mount it on a base plate since the adapter drops like a periscope

And, the rods - there's no rod support for the letus35 mini.

http://www.dvxuser6.com/uploaded/6474/1167090421.jpg

D'you reckon that support is home-made?

Last edited by Guest; December 2nd, 2007 at 04:22 PM.
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Old December 2nd, 2007, 07:55 PM   #14
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that is this doo-hickey:

http://www.adorama.com/BG3420.html
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 04:30 PM   #15
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that is this doo-hickey:

http://www.adorama.com/BG3420.html
I spoke to the guy at Letus and he said they are in the process of making the rod support system for the mini now, and it'll be ready in 2 weeks. Apparently if you buy now before Christmas you get the lens support bracket free, otherwise it's $50.

I considered building this whole rod system but it's going to take AGES, so I'll probably just end up buying it. If I can afford it all.
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