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Meet the Anamorphic Lens Cap (Old Delft Delrama 8 CP 1,5)


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Somewhere last year I stumbled upon a lot of Delrama 8 CP 1,5 lenses, made by the Dutch company Old Delft.

 

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A tiny fixed focus 1,5x anamorphic for 8mm camera's. It uses curved prisms and mirrors instead of cylincrical lenses. I bought them with some diy projects in mind...

 

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Sadly, the Delrama's are in pretty bad shape, as you can see. It isn't fungus, it is the silver on the mirrors that is detoiriated. You can't clean it, you'd have to redamp the mirrors to fix it. I never really looked into it, since it seems an expensive process.

So they have been lying around here for a while... Today I decided to experiment a bit more with them. The Delrama's have a screw mount that is exactly the same size as a C-mount lens. I don't have any lenses where I can fit it onto directly, but since it's so small and light, I decided to sacrifice a simple plastic lens cap from one of my Minolta's. I cut a hole into it, just large enough to fit the filter thread. It holds the Delrama pretty well.

 

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On the last picture it is attached to my Minolta 58mm f/1.4. It seems to need a pretty long lens. With the 58mm and the GH2 it works fine, but on my 35mm it's like looking trough a tunnel.

 

I also 'modified' a Computar 25mm f/1.8 C-mount lens. I superglued a C-mount extension ring to the inner part of the lens barrel (that doesn't move while focusing). I loosely screw the Delrama on top of that, align it and then tighten it with the little clamp.

 

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This results in a tiny anamorphic combination, but it only works in EXTC. Also, I think I'll have to modify the Computar lens, since it doesn't quite focus to infinity. It's a funny little combination though.

 

I took the Anamorphic Lens Cap and the Computar Anamorphic out for some test shots:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfV0xHHhQUU

 

In hindsight I should have used a profile with more contrast, this was all shot at smooth -2-2-2-2. The damaged Delrama's probably make the image even flatter. But the light was already pretty flat.

 

I have no idea how it would compare to a Delrama in pristine conditions, but even with the damaged mirrors these liltle ones still look usable in some way. It is nice to be able to rack focus them.

 

I'm not sure what the minimum focus distance is. I read 4 meters somewhere, but I think it's closer to 2 meters. I also tried holding some diopters in front of the lens, with a +1 diopter I could focus at 0,5 meters.

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Posted · Report post

Nice i also have the 8mm and the 16 mm. My copies are also with damaged silver. I've got to find someone who can resilver the prisms.

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Posted · Report post

Let me know when you find someone or a place :) I heard damping mirrors is a 'common' practice for astronomers.

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It's nice to see a write up about these. I haven't seen people posting much info about them at all. The ability to rack focus is nice. I'm curious though, since this seems to be an optical effect created by mirrors, how do the flares look?

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Just went out to shoot some bright lights. It looks definitely different because of the mirrors. A lot of reflections going on, interesting effects.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NOfNhRDz8U

 

Good thing is, I used the Konica Hexar 40mm f/1.8 for this clip (at f/1.8) and it works without vignetting!

Shot on Panasonic GH2, unhacked @ iso 3200.

 

Also, the focus seems fine from about 2 meters distance without diopters.

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Just went out to shoot some bright lights. It looks definitely different because of the mirrors. A lot of reflections going on, interesting effects.

 

Those ARE unique looking flares. I can't quite put my finger on why they look so different. They don't show up when you'd expect them to (i.e. when you were pointing the camera into headlights) and they look solid. As in, they don't look like light but rather like something physical and tangible emanating from your light sources. Cool!

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The flare seems to show up in the lower and upper parts, because of the mirrors. Actually it also gives a pretty nice effect when you use lenses that are too wide, so you can actually see the mirrors inside the anamorphic.

 

Here's an example, not my video, it's made with a 16mm Delrama and a 20mm f/1.7 Panasonic:

 

http://vimeo.com/7256943

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Shot some more with the Anamorphic lens cap. Still experimenting. Tried some focus pulls.

 

http://vimeo.com/61045763

 

Panasonic GH2 - Driftwood Moon Trail 5 hack (HBR 25 fps)
Minolta 58mm f/1.4 - mostly at f/2.8, some at f/2 and f/4. ISO 160 - 2500.

Footage is ungraded, I did apply unsharp mask though.

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