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-   -   Third Party Lenses...Really long throw (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/canon-xl-gl-series-dv-camcorders/44038-third-party-lenses-really-long-throw.html)

Darren Phalen May 4th, 2005 09:07 AM

Third Party Lenses...Really long throw
I am looking into buying an XL2, and need it for use in some long distance shot situations. I see on the Canon website that it states that I can use third party lenses, and as I may need as big as a 33:1 zoom lens, I was wondering if anyone knows of anywhere that makes such lenses that could fit the XL2? I tried asking Canon, but since they dont make them they refused to recommend anyone else. Any help on where to look for other lenses would be appreciated.

Chris Hurd May 4th, 2005 09:24 AM

Hi Darren,

It's easy to get "telescopic" with an XL2. Just add the EF adapter and any telephoto 35mm lens. You'll have a field of view comparable to the focal length of that lens multiplied by a factor of ten when shooting in the 4:3 aspect ratio, and multiplied by a factor of nearly eight when shooting in the 16:9 aspect ratio.

I have some samples of this application on my "XL2 Fields of View Comparisons" page located at:


See also my Guide to XL2 Lens Options page located at:


The only real drawback to using 35mm still photo lenses for this particular application is that there is of course no zoom motor so there's no practical way to perform a smooth, watchable zoom with these 35mm lenses. They're primarily for fixed, static shots only. If you need to pull a zoom, then your best bet is to go with the XL2's stock 20x auto lens plus the Canon 1.6x extender. Now that won't give you a 32x zoom ratio, it'll still be 20x, but it'll give you much more telephoto (at the cost of sacrificing some wide). I've got some samples of the 1.6x extender on that F.O.V. Comparisons page as well.

Hope this helps, and welcome to DV Info Net,

Declan Smith May 4th, 2005 02:39 PM

Adapters and lenses
As a new XL-2 owner, which 35mm lenses and adapter options are available ? I notice there are various adapters on the market, canon's own, nikon etc. Do the mountings change depending on manufacturer etc ?

What would you suggest is a good value/quality combination ? I only have the 20x lens at the moment and the red-eye wide angle adapter, but would like the ability to use other lenses. Looking at the canon solution, it could cost serious money.

I have a sigma 210 35mm lens (for example). Would the quality just not cut it ?

Chris Hurd May 4th, 2005 02:56 PM

Hi Declan,

Take a look at my F.O.V. Comparisons page (linked in my post above). The 35mm lenses I'm using there are both fairly low-end Sigma's, with some noticeable chromatic abberation. Whether or not they provide passable images just depends on your own standards of quality, I guess.

Ron Armstrong May 4th, 2005 03:39 PM

I have seen many variables in the use of long lenses with the Canon XL series cameras. They range from Canon EOS, Canon FD, Nikon, Sigma, Tamron and some very expensive Canon cinema lenses. The use of these lenses requires various adapters which are available comercially. Any lens that is Canon or Nikon compatable will work. ZGC carries a variety of these adapters. Check my website for some examples of lens - camera combinations.


Declan Smith May 4th, 2005 03:48 PM

Hi Chris

I have looked at those FOV shots a while back and am very impressed. My real question is what adapter to get, i.e. is there a difference (I'm sure there is!) in the various 35mm mounting systems or are 35mm lenses interchangeable ?

I would really like to get a fully manual lens as well. Are there cheaper options other than the canon 16x for example. I have been told by a previous XL1 owner that there are, but haven't been able to get the full low down.

I want to experiment with different setups but not pay the earth, equally I don't want to waste money unnecessarily on false economies.


Chris Hurd May 4th, 2005 03:53 PM

Hi Declan,

I'll defer to Ron Armstrong regarding photo lens adapters.

For a complete list of zoom video lenses available for the XL2, see my Guide to XL2 Lens Options page located at:


Hope this helps,

Tony Davies-Patrick May 4th, 2005 04:42 PM

For the person who wants to match the XL series of DV cameras, the world is your oyster. The of list of 35mm available lenses in Canon, Nikkor, Pentax, Minolta, Contax, Sigma, Tokina, Tamron etc is long, and maybe bewildering to some. For a complete list of lenses, go here:





Mounts are available fro many lenses systems to match the XL2, or if not, then they can be made to order by specialists such as Les Bosher at quite low prices.

Probably just as important as your choice of lenses for the XL1/1s/2 is a very sturdy tripod, long supportive camera release mount, and above all the correct technique to avoid shake and blur at those extreme ranges.

Using the wireless remote can often help you avoid the need to touch the camera after you have everything set-up. Try to not pan with these big lenses, and if you need to do so, I've found that if you completely brace both camera body and lens, and splay the tripod legs to thier lowest level, plus wrap both of your own legs over the tripod legs to act as brace, it can give quite god results. Watch out for stong breezes too...that lightweight XL DV body likes to dance in the wind if you let it...

Jon Bickford May 6th, 2005 04:45 PM

any idea whether a canon 35mm image stabilized lense will work with the canon ef adapter?

with the 70-200mm 2.8 IS lense you could achieve 2000mm and still be stabilized with a fast f-stop. for that matter does the ef adapter lose much light like a doubler would?

Ron Armstrong May 6th, 2005 05:55 PM

According to my instruction pamphlet on the EF adapter, the image stabilization works, but not to the full extent as on a 35mm still camera. It has something to do with a portion of the stabilization system on the camera and another portion in the lens. The XL2 is not the same, in that regard, as the still cameras.
The instructions do not say anything about loss of light. However, the unit has glass involved, so I would assume it does lose some light. In my use of the adapter I have not noticed a problem with light loss.
With lenses that long, a tripod should be used to gain stability, and it is not recommended to use image stabilization on a tripod. Stabilization tries to reduce movement, so tends to search at the end of a pan.
Check out my website for a picture of a 70 - 200 mm camera - lens combo.


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