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Brian Caldwell

A Tale of Two T2.0 Zooms (for A6300)

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9 hours ago, IronFilm said:

Why did you go with the Nikon 20-35mm f/2.8 over some other zoom such as Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8, Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 (I assume not this one because you're sticking with Nikon F mount, I do the same too), or Nikon 17-35mm f/2.8, or Tokina 16-28mm f/2.8,  etc?

WOW, are you shooting with 4 cameras simultaneously?? :-o

 

As you mentioned you're doing a lot of night shooting, what made you not go instead with the "conventional logic" of using an A7s mk2 for the night shoots?

Also you mentioned comparing the G7 files against RED and Alexa files, was a RED or Arri Alexa camera ever an option for your budget? Or were you just comparing for the sake of seeing how the G7 measures up? Did you consider a Sony F5 (or FS7)? As that is the camera I'd leap for if budget allowed and a lot of low light shooting is required (as I own a Sony F3 and am pleased indeed with how it performs in low light).
 

Im using the Nikon Glass as it is all very consistant and cuts together very nicely , and I do like the look it creates , it doesn't crush the blacks like Canon lenses do , there is alot of detail in the grays too , I use the 20-35mm with a Metabones XL Speedbooster as it has the equivilant of super 35mm gate /field of view . I very rarely shoot beyond 20mm , as Im not a fan of wide lenses much , I know lot of people on here want the widest fastest lens they can get but for me its just not cinematic at all - looks like video due to such a big depth of field . I shoot on long lenses most of the time as thats my style and I prefer the look and separation you get . most of the time I shoot with strict lens decipline on set 28mm for the wides , 40mm for the mids and 70mm for close ups and 100mm for the head shots , thats it ! so I'm never really in the 20mm range much , 20mm is there on the Nikon if I need it and I always carry a 14mm and 17mm incase for extreme wides - but they dont get used much by me!

On my last film the Producer was constanly saying - 'Don't use wide lenses they look unprofessional !!'  meaning no mega deep focus !!

on the Sony Vs Panny theme , if I was filming in moonlight in a field I migh use the Sony , but the Panny is an amazing camera , I use lighting , I play in the shadows alot , thats the look I prefer ,I dont over light and the Panny works great in low light very very clean in the blacks no fizz and noise , I never go over 800 iso , 200- 800 iso is my range and I light for that - it works.

 

The G7 really does hold it own against the RED and The Alexa , its a great clean camera - and you can stream 4k to an ATOMOS NINJA ASSASSIN and record 4K ProRes at 744 mb/s - amazing !!

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54 minutes ago, Brian Caldwell said:

I just wish there were at least one example of a speedboosted medium format lens that can't be equaled or bettered by a FF lens.  

Any modern MF lens is sharper wide open than it's FF counterparts.

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6 hours ago, Ebrahim Saadawi said:

What many forget is that an FD version is available so some super cheapo 100$ish e-bay set-ups are:

-Canon 24/28mm F2.8 Primes (17/20mm f/1.8 s35 lenses) 

Hallo Ebrahim and everyone,

 

I´ve been searching for a 28-70 zoom with constant F2.8 in FD mount and I found a Sigma one

but never had a chance to come across one of these on Ebay.

Info on it is very rare to almost none.

Anybody got their hands on one of these or knowledge about it?

http://allphotolenses.com/lenses/item/c_2084.html#

 

BTW, we did a short with the Canon FD 28mm and a China speedbooster on the G6.

Nice setup and great price.

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8 minutes ago, PannySVHS said:

Hallo Ebrahim and everyone,

 

I´ve been searching for a 28-70 zoom with constant F2.8 in FD mount and I found a Sigma one

but never had a chance to come across one of these on Ebay.

Info on it is very rare to almost none.

Anybody got their hands on one of these or knowledge about it?

http://allphotolenses.com/lenses/item/c_2084.html#

Have never used one, but I found a few on eBay. They run around $150, give or take. 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi
Just now, Brian Caldwell said:

I just wish there were at least one example of a speedboosted medium format lens that can't be equaled or bettered by a FF lens.  

@Brian Caldwell you don't see it because you still haven't created it I guess!

You don't believe medium format lenses have an advantage over FF glass? or just not when speedboosted? (if there's some kind of limitation).

I am sure using ALL THOSE medium format lenses on A7 series cameras with full image would be something people love!

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3 hours ago, Ebrahim Saadawi said:

@Brian Caldwell you don't see it because you still haven't created it I guess!

You don't believe medium format lenses have an advantage over FF glass? or just not when speedboosted? (if there's some kind of limitation).

I am sure using ALL THOSE medium format lenses on A7 series cameras with full image would be something people love!

Both.  The problem with medium format lenses is that they are by and large very slow.  As in f/2.8 on the fast side, and often way down around f/3.5-f/4.5, even for prime lenses.  After you add a focal reducer the speed is improved, but still just isn't very exciting.  I know there are a handful of f/1.9 - f/2.0 medium format lenses out there, but performance is not good enough to warrant a special Speed Booster IMO.  By contrast, the latest FF optics by Zeiss, Sigma et al are breathtakingly good at very large apertures.  The older medium format lenses just aren't in the same league, and I doubt there is enough of a market for them to ever catch up.

At one point I thought about doing a Speed Booster for the Leica-S lenses since they're actually pretty good.  However, they're also very expensive and you'd have to reverse-engineer the electronics to control the aperture.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

@Brian Caldwell

It's an interesting thought.

A Sony/Canon 50mp-ish newest FF sensors + Zeiss/Sigma 50mm F/1.4 glass would provide the same or better image to a 50MP sensor with a common 80-90mm f/2.8. I think it happened because the higher demand on FF warranted higher performance increase both by sensor & lens makers. 

The MF SB request comes from that there's a magical unique aesthetic to MF size but I don't think it's true and matching between size formats has been proven with getting equivalent lenses = same ''aesthetic''. 

And some people argue that MF glass is vastly higher performing and quality built/glass to any FF lenses. I also don't think it's true and only applies to a handful of very expensive and modern MF stills/Cinema glass. FF lenses have rocketed, look at Sigma & Canon & Nikon & ziess newest releases after 2013-ish in terms of IQ and cost, unbelievable.

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1 hour ago, Ebrahim Saadawi said:

@Brian Caldwell

It's an interesting thought.

A Sony/Canon 50mp-ish newest FF sensors + Zeiss/Sigma 50mm F/1.4 glass would provide the same or better image to a 50MP sensor with a common 80-90mm f/2.8. I think it happened because the higher demand on FF warranted higher performance increase both by sensor & lens makers. 

The MF SB request comes from that there's a magical unique aesthetic to MF size but I don't think it's true and matching between size formats has been proven with getting equivalent lenses = same ''aesthetic''. 

And some people argue that MF glass is vastly higher performing and quality built/glass to any FF lenses. I also don't think it's true and only applies to a handful of very expensive and modern MF stills/Cinema glass. FF lenses have rocketed, look at Sigma & Canon & Nikon & ziess newest releases after 2013-ish in terms of IQ and cost, unbelievable.

I certainly agree with both your main points:  1) there is no magical aesthetic to MF, and 2) MF glass is not generally higher performing than FF glass.

The newer Zeiss lenses are just flat-out amazing in terms of IQ, but are expensive (similar to many MF lenses:blush:).  The Sigma ART lenses are an amazing blend of high performance at a modest price.  And it does appear that Canon, Nikon, Tamron et al. are starting to catch up.  I think it really is a golden era in photographic optics, but most of the gold is being bestowed on FF rather than MF.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

@Brian Caldwell 

-How do you rate lenses as being bad or amazing? Is it optical tests in being the highest sharpness at large iris, lack of distortion, lack of CA, aspheric Coma, corner shading, fringing, bokeh smoothness, contrast etc? Meaning are you just searching for the technically closest to perfect optical performance? 

-I ask this question because many film people (this is a vido board) don't rate lenses the same way, and talk about character of lenses that's created from defects and find highest optical quality lenses to be termed as ''clinical'' and ''non-filmic'', small defects some lower contrast, some shading, warm colours, weird bokeh, not too sharp wide open, not 100 flat in distortion that emphasizes 3D space, etc.

I hope you get y question here. In a nutshell, Do you like/believe this later approach vs the former technical superiority? (I know that each to his own but I want to know your view)

________________ 

I'd like to know what zeiss glass you're saying flat-out amazing here? Batis? Melvus? Otus? And what specific Sigmas?

Overall-y, getting a short (or better long) words from an expert like you on the current/old best lenses would be flat-out amazing too!

Like is the best 50mm the Otus, then the Sigma?

Best 35mm the new Canon then the Sigma?

Waht's that best 85mm after the Otus?

What's the best long bright prime 100-135mm?

What's the best image stabilized lens at normal and tele ranges? 

________________ 

I know many questions but it's rare talking to someone like you so I am shamelessly talking full-advantage of it! 

 

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Ebrahim Saadawi, remember also for most of us film guys we do not care about the "best" lens, but rather we want the best *SET* of lenses!

So we want a cohesive matching collection of lenses from ultra wide to telephoto. So no point getting the greatest ever 85mm if its matching 24mm is a dog, or even worse.... doesn't exist!!

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I  am also curious about the attributes you value most in a lens (and why you made a comparison with the Fujinon 14.5-45?)  The value of that lens is based on the build, mechanics, serviceability, and how close it matches other lenses in the series both optically and mechanically as you are well aware.  The optical characteristics of a lens is an aesthetic choice when it comes to visual arts.   Fun to compare prices though!

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I recently acquired a leaf aptus 10-ii (56mm x 36mm sensor), 56mpx.  It's old, noisy and has less dr than my a7rii.  The difference in megapixels between the two is only marginal but each pixel on the aptus has significantly more area.  

Most of the later zeiss and schneider lenses for 6x6 format resolve the same information onto a full frame sensor as a full frame lens does.  for instance my hasselblad 50mm/2.8 distagon wide open is just as good at resolving detail as a contax 50mm/1.4 closed down to f2.8 when compared on the a7rii.  I'd say both lenses fall short of the 42mpx a7rii and just about resolve enough to view the 42mpx image at 66%.  at 100% the lenses run out of resolution for such finely packed pixels.

The difference between the above is that the hasselblad lens has an image circle almost twice the diameter of the full frame lens meaning the projected information onto the 80mm image circle of the hasselblad is nearly 3x the amount of pixels.  granted the performance of the 50mm hassy will deteriorate towards its corner limits on 6x6 but lets say we only use the 645 area (70mm circle).  This still results in a 2.5x advantage in optical resolution.  

 

Now, if you then used your magic and created a nice focal reducer providing around a 0.7x magnification with some generic apo correction to help what are largely film lenses when used on a digital sensor.  squeeze the 2.5x more optical information onto the 42mpx sensor (and likely a 60mpx one down the line) I know I;d buy one.

I'm aware that a focal reduced 80mm/2.8 on the a7rii wont ever look exactly like the 80mm/2.8 on my aptus 10, but it'll be close.  

 

comparing to the slew of boring technically perfect sigma lenses who have no character is a mistake IMO.  I've seen lots of very clean images from the sigma 1.4 art.  but very few that exhibit the optical character/magic from a masterpiece from 1980's Germany.

 

That said, I can;t see many people willing to buy a MF speed booster in reality since it won;t give them the authentic medium format look without investing in the best lenses for MF and having to work around the slow focus mechs and the extreme weight.  my 50mm/2.8 distagon weighs 6 times what the contax 50mm/1.4 does! 

 

 

 

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10 hours ago, IronFilm said:

Ebrahim Saadawi, remember also for most of us film guys we do not care about the "best" lens, but rather we want the best *SET* of lenses!

So we want a cohesive matching collection of lenses from ultra wide to telephoto. So no point getting the greatest ever 85mm if its matching 24mm is a dog, or even worse.... doesn't exist!!

exactly , a set of matched lenses is essesntial for glass parity - thats why I champion the Nikons so much - the 20-35mm 28-70mm  and 80-200mm all match and cut together very nicely

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8 hours ago, andy lee said:

exactly , a set of matched lenses is essesntial for glass parity - thats why I champion the Nikons so much - the 20-35mm 28-70mm  and 80-200mm all match and cut together very nicely

Those were top of the line lenses not too long ago before the 24-70 and 70-200's hit, but they still have most of Nikon's current technology. Do you ever shoot wider than the 20-35?

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7 minutes ago, The Chris said:

Those were top of the line lenses not too long ago before the 24-70 and 70-200's hit, but they still have most of Nikon's current technology. Do you ever shoot wider than the 20-35?

;) Just had to read back a tiny bit where he said:

Quote

I use the 20-35mm with a Metabones XL Speedbooster as it has the equivilant of super 35mm gate /field of view . I very rarely shoot beyond 20mm , as Im not a fan of wide lenses much , I know lot of people on here want the widest fastest lens they can get but for me its just not cinematic at all - looks like video due to such a big depth of field . I shoot on long lenses most of the time as thats my style and I prefer the look and separation you get . most of the time I shoot with strict lens decipline on set 28mm for the wides , 40mm for the mids and 70mm for close ups and 100mm for the head shots , thats it ! so I'm never really in the 20mm range much , 20mm is there on the Nikon if I need it and I always carry a 14mm and 17mm incase for extreme wides - but they dont get used much by me!

On my last film the Producer was constanly saying - 'Don't use wide lenses they look unprofessional !!'  meaning no mega deep focus !!

 

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The 28-70 and 80-200 Nikon's are better lenses optically then the newer 24-70 and 70-200 much less distortion and sharper too and the older lenses have aperture rings too , the new ones don't they are fly by wire lenses ....newer is not necessarily better in this case .....for me the Nikon 80-200 2.8 is Nikon's finest hour . their best lens in my book

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