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Old April 24th, 2007, 05:03 PM   #1
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Super-telephoto for consumer camcorders?

Hi!

I was wondering if there is a way to connect a SLR-lens to a consumer camcorder, like my Canon HV-10 with its 37mm filter mount diameter!? After using the search function I found a manufacturer of converters for camcorders with exchangeable lenses but none with converters from a filter mount to a lens mount.

As I am interested in such a converter for wildlife footage and as I think that this is a outdoor-filming-issue, I thought this post would fit better in here than in the HV-10 forum. ;-)

I thank you for you answers in advance!

Regards,

Oliver
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Old April 24th, 2007, 05:23 PM   #2
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Hi Oliver. Raynox and Century/Schneider are two companies which make telephoto convertors which should fit your 37mm filter threads:

http://www.raynox.co.jp/english/egindex.htm
http://www.schneideroptics.com/century/dv/a1u/a1u.htm
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Old April 25th, 2007, 01:01 AM   #3
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Hello Boyd,

thank you very much for your reply. I already knew these converters - however I don't know of any converter that provides more than 2.2x tele conversion (Raynox HD-2200Pro).

I was thinking of something really big, like a converter to attach a 500 mm telephoto-lens to my HV-10. I found on eBay an adapter to connect a M42 lens to a camera with a M37 connector, but I don't think that the distance between the lens of my HV-10 and the lens with the M42 connector would be right!? And - wouldn't the picture be upside down (I wouldn't care too much about this because I could probably change this during post-pro)?

Regards, Oliver
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Old April 25th, 2007, 02:17 AM   #4
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Oliver,

If you want something really big, I fitted the HV10 to a Swarovski 80HD scope using a 30x eyepiece and Swarovski DCA adaptor. The only problem was that the HV10 had to be nearly fully zoomed in to avoid vignetting. The magnification was "Huge"

Bob
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Old April 25th, 2007, 04:56 AM   #5
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There is a limitation to how much magnification power you can squeeze out of a small camcorder and maintain good picture quality and also be able to operate it in an efficient manner for most video subjects. This is why you don't see much in the way of telextenders that go beyond the 1.5X to 2.2X level, that are designed to fit them. With higher levels of magnification, using big SLR-type lenses or digiscoping setups with spotting-scopes, the depth-of-focus is so small, that it is almost impossible to quickly focus on anything or to focus at all on moving subjects. Vignetting is also a big problem at anything less than full-zoom, when using them. I've tried some 3X and 3.5X video telextenders and got nothing but poor-quality images and it took some time to focus them. With a small HD camcorder, you would want the best picture quality and you won't be likely to get it with anything more powerful than a 2.2X telex. There are some full-sized, mega-costly pro HD camcorders that can take big and powerful lenses, but that's a whole different sort of thing, from using an HV10.

It hasn't been mentioned that Sony made a nice little 1.7X telextender to fit its 37mm mini-HD camcorders. They have an ordinary-quality one at that size for SD and another that has HD optical-quality.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 08:25 AM   #6
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I have a "Sony High Grade" 2x telextender with 37mm threads which I used on my PDX-10. I think the quality is really quite good and know that people have used the same lens on the Sony HVR-A1 high def camera.

People also stack multiple telextenders to multiply the power: http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam...Support-1s.jpg

:-)
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Old April 25th, 2007, 11:12 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd Ostroff View Post
People also stack multiple telextenders to multiply the power: http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam...Support-1s.jpg

:-)
Yiiik, that picture was one of the most insane I have ever seen! Wonder how the picture look like? That the guy has done some real workmanship, made up a rail etc. :-)
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Old April 25th, 2007, 11:18 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver Reik View Post
Hi!

I was wondering if there is a way to connect a SLR-lens to a consumer camcorder, like my Canon HV-10 with its 37mm filter mount diameter!?
Oliver it's time to start to save up money for the real stuff! I think only camcorders like the Canon XLH1 will give you the picture quality you are looking for at least when we are talking about 1500mm +++ focal length.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 04:39 PM   #9
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Oliver,

I'm using a couple of old SD camcorders with a variety of teleconverters and homeade lens/adapter combinations. There are a couple of posts here somewhere of mine that used a Canon Optura 200mc attached to a Meade ETX-90 scope which works ok sometimes :). I just posted a short clip of a Tree Swallow that was taken with an old Sony DCR-TRV730 Digital 8 camcorder and a Sony "High Grade" 2x teleconverter. You get mixed results but nothing nearly as nice as these guys with their XL's and such. There is some information available at www.birdforum.net in Andy Bright's digiscoping forum under the title "Videoscoping". Here is a link to my Tree Swallow: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=92199.

Rick
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Old April 25th, 2007, 11:47 PM   #10
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I've got the same Sony TRV730 Digital8 camcorder Rick has used. I have attached a Raynox 2.2X telextender to it for a total of 1,839mm for video and 1,544mm for still pictures. This particular combination works very well, although it vignettes in the lower 75% or so of the zoom range. This model is the prince of the Digital8 series, having a 1 MegaPixel Super HAD CCD. I can mix footage from it pretty well with what I get with my VX2100. That magnification power works out to 36.8X. There's times I still use it as a main camera, when wildlife is too distant for my VX2100, which will reach only about 2/3 as far with the same telex lens.
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Old April 26th, 2007, 02:10 PM   #11
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There are several monocular manufacturers (Kenko is one) who make 37mm camera adapters for their scopes. These will add from 5X to 7X magnification. My experience is that the magnification factor is WOW, but the resolution is between poor and dreadful. Depending on your use, they might be a worthwhile tool.

Best wishes,
Peter
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Old April 27th, 2007, 05:14 PM   #12
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Hello!

Thank you very much for all your answers - sadly none of them sounds like a good solution for my use-cases. :-( I will then simply go for a aprox. 2x converter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Per Johan Naesje View Post
Oliver it's time to start to save up money for the real stuff! I think only camcorders like the Canon XLH1 will give you the picture quality you are looking for at least when we are talking about 1500mm +++ focal length.
I would love to own a XL-H1 - however 8000,- (in Germany) is by far out of my wallet's range and I am filming too occasionally that it would make sense to go for such a weapon. The other thing is that I usually film during other activities, like hiking, paragliding or things like that - I am pretty sure that I would leave anything bigger than a HV-20 most of the time at home. For this reason I think that it is better to get less than perfect footage than no footage at all because I did not take the camera with me.

If I would have to buy a camera today, I would probably go for the HV-20 instead of the HV-10 - and I still dream of a camera like the HV-20, built into a solid metal-casing, with more and easier to access manual controls and better audio. :-D

Regards,

Oliver
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Old April 27th, 2007, 11:51 PM   #13
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Oliver,

I know where Per Johan is coming from and I would agree with him if you were doing this stuff all the time. It is a big investment.

Just do not compare what your footage is like to some of the high end stuff. If you are filming for fun to share with friends then stay with the smaller cam.

the A1 is half the price of an xh and would do anything you want to do.

Mind you, a gl2 makes some mighty fine footage!! and it has a 20x florite lens.

I enjoyed alkl the posts you conjoured up with this thread.

Enjoy what you have, learn to optimize it qualities and you will still get some great footage.
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Old April 28th, 2007, 05:46 PM   #14
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Further to my earlier post about using the HV10 coupled to a Swarovski scope, well attached is a shot with the Canon HV10 coupled with a Swarovski ATS 80HD scope and 20x eyepiece. It produces a focal length of

Lens Type
Focal Length: 6.1 - 61mm (35mm Equivalent: 43.6 - 436mm)

Scope 20x eyepiece

Resulting picture equivalent to 436 x 20 = 8720mm

But the aberations are not acceptable except for "record" shots.

Attachment is full frame (no crop) of nesting Black-winged Stilt
Attached Thumbnails
Super-telephoto for consumer camcorders?-img_0963ff.jpg  
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Old May 11th, 2007, 02:38 PM   #15
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I have been wondering if the digital zoom on the HV10 and HV20 starts with the 1920 x 1080 sensor image, zooming before encoding to 1440 x 1080 HDV. If so, digital zooming about 1.5x (with a good 1.7 or 2x TC) might still give you a very good quality high-resolution image.

Pat
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