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arant.joseph

Anamorphic Base Lens Help Needed!

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Hello everyone.  I just purchase my first anamorphic lens, and I need help with the best base lens for the job.  First here is my gear:

- Schneider Kreuznach 2x anamorphic lens

- VidAtlantic adaptor

-Diopter

-Nikon d750

Notice I havent included a base lens.  Since the d750 shoots in fx or dx modes, I am torn between a 50mm lens purchase vs a 85mm lens purchase.  Furthermore, whenever I see these anamorphic setups, the base lens always seems to be an older model (I.e. manual focus and aperture control).  Is there any reason the newest models couldn't be used?

Thanks in advance for your assistance.  P.S. I will be doing photography as well as film with this setup. 

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

 Furthermore, whenever I see these anamorphic setups, the base lens always seems to be an older model (I.e. manual focus and aperture control).  Is there any reason the newest models couldn't be used?

People tend to say that anamorphic adapters "work better with older, simpler glass". I have never understood why, but noticed that my zoom lens produce much worse image then primes. Some say that simple optic schemes work better. Vintage glass has a bunch of character and is usually cheaper then new autofocus glass, I guess these are couple of many reasons why people love it that much. Using autofocus for video that is not blogging is kinda of a no-no, unless it serves a specific reason, and it's very hard to control, so you can rarely find somebody using autofocus for video work. 

One of the popular choices for Canon is Helios 44-2, 58mil f2 soviet glass, but since you're on Nikon you'd have to use trickier mounting options to get it to work (adapters with lenses inside to get infinity) so I'm not sure it's OK to recommend it to you.

Please note that I am an anamorphic noob too and this is just the info I've read on a bunch of forums, but mostly this one, so it can only be a starting point for your further research.

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Redimp is right, primes work much better with anamophic adapters than zooms. Primes vignette less.
New lenses can definetely be used. A thing to consider is the diameter of the front element. Newer lenses tend to have bigger front elements which may or may not physicly attach to your anamorphic adapter.
One more reason why many people use old taking lenses is that they add there own character. You can change the lens flare of your anamorphic setup a bit by using different taking lenses. Additionally old lenses are usually cheap.
The mentioned Helios 44-2 is a great taking lens because it is 58mm focal lenght. With modern lenses you usually only find 50mm and maybe 55mm. But on many anamophic setups these focal lenght tend to vignette where the 58mm can sometimes be used vignette free.

So if you choose a taking lens you first have to find out the minimum focal lenght which does not vignett. After that it is a matter of preference and physical form factor to decide which taking lens you use.

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When selecting a taking lens for an anamorph it's worth researching what the original taking lens would have been.  and if there are various options you want to go for the middle focal length or the one the lenses are typically used on.  

 

So researching your cinelux 2x anamorphic lens you'll see that there are many focal length primes available for projection.

as far as I can see, the gold cinelux 2x anamorphics could be paired with anything from 42.5mm/2 up to 100mm/2 from a range of primes.  They'll have therefore designed the lens to perform best at the mid point.  =70mm, (or they may have been designed to work best with a specific focal length to project from a certain distance onto a certain size screen.)

 

However lets assume they went with the most obvious solution - design for 70mm primes with enough performance to cater for a different focal length.

 

So lets say the best performance can be had from the cinelux at 70mm/f2 on s35mm (aps-c for simplicity)  on full frame to match the performance closely you'll want a 100mm/2.8 on full frame.   

 

So assuming you went with something close to a 70mm/2 as a typical lens it would mean you could get away with using it in aps-c for optimal IQ or when used on full frame you could close down to 70/2.8 and get similar fov and perfomance to that you would expect from the schneider 42.5mm/2 prime (which would be considered 'within spec' by the schneider techs in terms of performance. 

 

Performance is always better from projection anamorphics with double gauss designs (all of the schneider projection lenses are of this design).  I think the closest 'full frame capable' lens that is affordable and gets close to the optimal 70mm/2 focal length, while also being a double gauss design is a medium format 80/2.8 like a biometar 80/2.8.  You will find 75mm/2 lenses which closely match the criteria but they're rare and often made by collectable brands.  

 

If you can live with moderate vignette on full frame then go with a late helios 44 - a helios 44-3 or later will have multi coatings that match the coatings on the cinelux very well.  aps-c with the helios 44-3 will deliver outstanding results only slightly less refined than my estimated optimal 70mm FL

 

 

Thanks in advance for your assistance.  P.S. I will be doing photography as well as film with this setup. 

this makes performance even more important since viewers tend to need more refined in focus areas when you're shooting stills.  I still think the helios 44-3 is a superb option and only slightly out of optimal spec for aps-c.  and only slightly pushing things on the wide end.  however the drop in iq will be at the edges anyway and will likely be a desirable aesthetic (particularly for portraits) 

 

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