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Justin Bacle

Anamorphic Stories - ft. Isco UltraStar & Canon 50D

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Just wanted to share my anamorphic experiences on the forum in one topic for simplicity.

For now I have been using :
- 50D (MLRAW in 1280 x 1058 for 1.2:1 aspect ratio)
- ISCO UltraStar (gold one with 1.5m minimum focus) w/ RafCamera Clamp
- Helios 44-2 58/2 - Practika 135/2.8 (Industar-9 and Mir-1B are coming soon)

Next items to buy IMO are : 
- New clamps (front and rear) as I don't like the tiny tiny screws that come with the RAF adapter and would like my clamps to be tool-less
- SLR Magic rangefinder for rack-focusing ability

Workflow is the following (whilst I don't find a more efficient way) :
- MLVFS -> AfterEffects (CameraRaw & VisionLog) -> Premiere (dynamic link) & Lumetri -> DNxHD 4:4:4 10bit Export

 

 As I have no front clamp (yet), everything is shot without ND filter. Which is not a problem atm as I love the super16 look you get in sunny days :)
The second video was the first time I really got to shoot at night, I have to say I enjoyed it a lot
A few shots are misaligned and I saw it on the computer :s The screen of the 50D is just too tiny shooting 1.2:1 with in camera desqueeze to notice it whilst shooting)

If you have advices, please do not hesitate to tell me, I'd love to hear them :)

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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

As I can't find a way to edit the first post... 

Just received the Jupiter-9 (I wrote Industar-9 in the first post, but that was a mistake). So far, I am not very impressed but i'll have to try it in daylight on full frame 

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Flares (and other stuff) in action : 

 Sorry for using the infamous warp stabilizer, but I didn't have my rig as I lended it (with my other camera) to a friend. 

Very quick edit, and graded using a Fuji lut after processing the luts with visionLog in ACR.

Just wanted to try the flare technique with the ultrastar, nothing more intended in this video.

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Just did a stretch factor measurement as shown by @Tito Ferradans in his video about the Kowa B&H mods.

Isco Ultrastar @ infinity (measured with a +1 diopter) : 1.99x stretch -> 2.0x
Isco Ultrastar @ 1.5m (measured without diopters) : 1.82x stretch -> 1.8x

What got me to measure it is Eddie (from Vid-Atlantic, from which I bought my new clamps), who is advertising the isco ultrastars on sale on vid-atlantic's website being advertised as 1.9x stretch anamorphic. I wanted to test that :)

I'm wondering if I should just unsqueeze everything @1.9x for simplicity or match the stretch factor for each shot (to this date, I always used the 2x stretch factor for ease of use with after effects)

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Here is the last video I shot with the Canon 50D, Helios 44-2 and Pentax 135/2.5, Isco Ultrastar and SLR Magic rangefinder.

Not impressed by the reduced sharpness caused by the rangefinder but very usefull in these conditions. The throw is waaay to long though for a single operator :O

 

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So, here is my problem with the Rangefinder : It is everything but sharp !

Here are a few test pictures (captured with the AF100, a Jupiter-8 and the Ultrastar)

First one with the rangefinder : 
AF100_Jupiter9_UltraStar_SLR.thumb.jpg.ecccaf37e0853754416cac664b8f78a0.jpg

And then with a "hama" +1 diopter (I had to move the camera a bit to get good enough focus)
AF100_Jupiter9_UltraStar_Diopter.thumb.jpg.eaee7530e27e9584c57b891bd37d11d4.jpg

The thing I noticed on these "not so contrasty" pictures is that everything is a bit less sharp, high contrast zones tend to show some haze.

I guess this is okay for the price, but then comes my real complain.

On bright tiny light sources, I get a weird coma like effect as seen on this picture (50D, Helios 44-2 @~f/3.5, Ultrastar, SLR Magic Rangefinder)
58ec0a523a05c_AbsoluteValentineBatofarFINALnoisy.mov_20170411_004113.521_LI.thumb.jpg.1ecba4d589a22a6409057e61fd506f1e.jpg

Plus there is a lot of haze on high contrast areas :s  (50D, Helios 44-2 @~f/3.5, Ultrastar, SLR Magic Rangefinder)
58ec0aeacd9da_AbsoluteValentineBatofarFINALnoisy.mov_20170411_004406.657_LI.thumb.jpg.d9486f0c62c9e2a6d82c2d8ceb6e02f7.jpg

Do I have a bad copy of the SLR magic Rangefinder or are you experiencing similar results ?

I like to shoot wide open, when I bought my Rangefinder I knew it was not that sharp, but the results I saw online are not as bad as what I have seen so far on mine :s
I thought i could stop down my lenses for a bit, but it is just not the way I shoot mainly because I don't have a good high ISO camera. (AF100 and 50D are only acceptable up to 800ISO)
Maybe I just need to sell it and get a Rectilux :O (My bank account already disapproves !)

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On 4/11/2017 at 9:24 PM, Julien416 said:

Well the thing is supposed to be very soft up to F2.8½ - F4. Even with their anamorphic primes, they recommend shooting at F4 / F5.6...

What was your average aperture when you used it ?

The live images were shot around f3.5 - f/4. But still, I don't really see the point of going f/4 then. If you shoot anamorphic, it is mainly for the flares and anamorphic bokeh. If I shoot at f/4, I don't get any of these :s

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It seems really reasonnable indeed. It shouldn't be so soft. You're right, shooting at f5.6 is really defeating the point of shooting anamorphic to get the look. However, i recently shot something with some pana serie C anamorphic gear and my DOP was really reluctant to go under 2.8. He really was fond on shooting at f4 where they supposedly shine. What i mean, is that f4 isn't something very unusual for anamorphic shooting. 

Anyway, a friend just received a rangefinder, i'll compare it to my hardcoreDNA to check if it's THAT soft. 

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On 4/13/2017 at 9:50 AM, Julien416 said:

It seems really reasonnable indeed. It shouldn't be so soft. You're right, shooting at f5.6 is really defeating the point of shooting anamorphic to get the look. However, i recently shot something with some pana serie C anamorphic gear and my DOP was really reluctant to go under 2.8. He really was fond on shooting at f4 where they supposedly shine. What i mean, is that f4 isn't something very unusual for anamorphic shooting. 

Anyway, a friend just received a rangefinder, i'll compare it to my hardcoreDNA to check if it's THAT soft. 

Great, thank you for your comparison :)

BTW, I changed my workflow from :
MLVFS -> After Effects -> Log cineform Intermediate -> Premiere
to :
MLVFS -> Resolve

I miss the noise reduction and RWA processing of ACR, but the time needed to create the intermediate files is just not worth it :s

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