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Devon

2x anamorphic essentially 1.5x and 1.33x

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So I had a thought today. WARNING: I tend to ramble, so bear with me :) 

--I have been thinking about buying an anamorphic lens lately. I shoot with a Sony A7s, and therefore am resticted to 16:9. I don't have a large budget, and have settled on buying a 2x anamorphic lens off of Ebay.

One of my concerns is the ultra-wide aspect ratio 2x produces on a 16:9 sensor (3.55:1.)

If I stretch the anamorphic footage in post, rather than squeeze, I double my horizontal resolution.

But that horribly-wide aspect ratio (3.55:1) it produces is just too wide for my taste.

So, after doing a bit (a lot) of math, I realized that if I just horizontally crop the image in post to fit a 2.66:1 or 2.39:1 composition (correcting the distortion by horizontally stretching the footage), that there is essentially NO need to buy a 1.33x or 1.5x lens.---Depending on the horizontal crop, a 2x lens essentially has all 3 types of anamorphic lenses (1.33x, 1.5x, and 2x) "built in" (depending on the horizontal crop I choose.)

Depending on the horizontal crop I choose from a 2x lens, it also produces the same horizontal FOV the other anamorphic options (1.5x, and 1.33x) would produce. 

So after all this rambling, my question is as follows...

For those of you familiar with anamorphic shooting, is this theory essentially correct?

Thank you for sticking with me :) I know this is a lot of info to take in. 

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1 hour ago, Devon said:

So I had a thought today. WARNING: I tend to ramble, so bear with me :) 

--I have been thinking about buying an anamorphic lens lately. I shoot with a Sony A7s, and therefore am resticted to 16:9. I don't have a large budget, and have settled on buying a 2x anamorphic lens off of Ebay.

One of my concerns is the ultra-wide aspect ratio 2x produces on a 16:9 sensor (3.55:1.)

If I stretch the anamorphic footage in post, rather than squeeze, I double my horizontal resolution.

But that horribly-wide aspect ratio (3.55:1) it produces is just too wide for my taste.

So, after doing a bit (a lot) of math, I realized that if I just horizontally crop the image in post to fit a 2.66:1 or 2.39:1 composition (correcting the distortion by horizontally stretching the footage), that there is essentially NO need to buy a 1.33x or 1.5x lens.---Depending on the horizontal crop, a 2x lens essentially has all 3 types of anamorphic lenses (1.33x, 1.5x, and 2x) "built in" (depending on the horizontal crop I choose.)

Depending on the horizontal crop I choose from a 2x lens, it also produces the same horizontal FOV the other anamorphic options (1.5x, and 1.33x) would produce. 

So after all this rambling, my question is as follows...

For those of you familiar with anamorphic shooting, is this theory essentially correct?

Thank you for sticking with me :) I know this is a lot of info to take in. 

The main reason for shooting 1.33x (actually, 1.344x would be best) is to get 2.39:1 output with no waste of a 16:9 sensor.  Shooting 2x on 16:9 and cropping throws away resolution.  Aside from these considerations, there is the aesthetic look that different squeeze ratios provide.  Many people dislike 1.33x because it doesn't look very anamorphic.  However, even 2x anamorphics don't always share the same look.  Rear anamorphics don't look anamorphic at all.  Zeiss 2x Master Anamorphics actually look more like 1.64x true front anamorphics due to their mixed front/rear design.

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In an ideal world you need to shoot 4:3 with a x2 anamorphic, and correct me if i'm wrong, but a camera that can shoot 4:3 is using a crop of the sensor - so you're already loosing some of the sensor's resolution? Therefore, if you crop in post (it's just the sides after all) you will be throwing away some of the image and so, some of the resolution. But is this any different to those that shoot spherical & crop in post? Personally, i don't think so and the reason become clear if you consider the Cinema DCP aspect ratios for 2.39:

Cinema DCP 2K = 2048x858

Cinema DCP 4K = 4096x1716

I crop all the time & feel fine about it - it looks fine & you can even do minor pans. My other reasoning comes from the notion that if you squeeze the footage (this has been discussed before elsewhere on the forum), rather than stretch, the footage looks sharper - not sure if this is an optical illusion or true fact.

But if you look at the Cinema DCP ratios, you could get away with upscaling slightly to 4K anamorphic - this would be beneficial if you were shooting with really sharp lenses, as it would take the edge off (so to speak). This sort of upscaling is done a lot, especially if you take into account the amount of Alexa footage that you see at the cinema (if projected in 4K) is upscaled.

However, if you look at the 2K DCP ratio (2048x858) and then consider that a x2 anamorphic on a 16:9 package will give you 3840x1080, so you'll be downscaling (sharper image?) and loosing some of the sides might not really be that much of a big deal - again, this is assuming that what I've read about squeezing instead of stretching is correct.

Personally, i think that the 2.66 aspect ratio is a really good compromise, as its not that much wider than 2.39 and it was used as a cinema aspect ratio called Cinemascope by 20th Century Fox between 1953-1967 (basically it is 2x larger than the Academy's aspect ratio of 1.37). But, because of the magnetic strip used for sound, most Cinemascope films were 2.55, but that doesn't exist anymore so 2.66 is fine.

Or you could go with the Ultra-Panovision 70 aspect ratio of 2.75:1

NB. Polyvision aspect ratio was 4.00:1

One final thing: If you're delivering for the internet, it doesn't matter as most people will be watching on their phones or tablets & they'll never notice a loss in resolution or whatever. Same goes for TV distribution, since HD broadcasts aren't even proper HD, no one is going to notice.

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I totally agree @Bioskop.Inc

If you're using spherical lenses, you're limited to 1920x1080. If you use anamorphic, and stretch the footage, you're doubling horizontal resolution. So if we decide to crop in post, it's hard to think of it as a loss in resolution when you just doubled your horizontal resolution. 

Depending on the horizontal crop I choose from a 2x lens, it also produces the same horizontal FOV the other anamorphic options (1.5x, and 1.33x) would produce (assuming the taking lens doesn't change.) Is this true too?

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21 hours ago, Bioskop.Inc said:

However, if you look at the 2K DCP ratio (2048x858) and then consider that a x2 anamorphic on a 16:9 package will give you 3840x1080, so you'll be downscaling (sharper image?)

Actually, you are downscaling vertical resolution but still upscaling in horizontal resolution as captured vRes is 1920 upscaled to 2048 (the more you crop, the more you loose hResolution). 

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Get really confused about how resolution is used, or can be applied as a descriptive term, especially when cropping any type of image.

This reveals the circle of confusion when using the term resolution:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image_resolution

Personally, don't think it really matters if you crop the sides & resolution (whether used properly or not) is one of those [stupid] hang ups like crop factor or sharpness - I'm going with the final pixel count & not the possibilities of the original sensor image size.

Confusing myself now......

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3 hours ago, raf702 said:

I got a bit tired of shooting with 2x and 16:9. I'm happy with a 1.5x on a 16:9, post is easy and don't need to crop the image. Find a quality 1.5x is the only hard part.

Exactly, x1.5 is more than adequate & 2.66:1 is far easier to deal with.

It's only really the purists (with their cheap x2 dual focus adaptors) that advocate a x2 anamorphic, and you can only use one with a camera with a 4:3 option.

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2 hours ago, Bioskop.Inc said:

Exactly, x1.5 is more than adequate & 2.66:1 is far easier to deal with.

It's only really the purists (with their cheap x2 dual focus adaptors) that advocate a x2 anamorphic, and you can only use one with a camera with a 4:3 option.

Yup, and I prefer x1.5 any day of the week. Unless I can use a 4:3 capable camera, with x2 primes.

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13 hours ago, Bioskop.Inc said:

Exactly, x1.5 is more than adequate & 2.66:1 is far easier to deal with.

It's only really the purists (with their cheap x2 dual focus adaptors) that advocate a x2 anamorphic, and you can only use one with a camera with a 4:3 option.

That's true that 4:3 cameras are difficult to come across, but the final results are worth it I think. (plus 1.5x anamorphics are just too damn expensive IMHO). But the convenience of 1.5X is valuable for sure !

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Budget & 4K are not things that hold any interest for me what-so-ever. If a camera doesn't deliver in ProRes, then it's a waste of time. The same goes for 4K, it's basically a cinema format that is a pipe dream for the large majority of consumers - damn, they can't even give us proper HD tv broadcasts yet!

If you're on a budget, then the Isco Widescreen 2000 is a really good option for a x1.5 - stunning glass, kinda focus through but nothing a few diopters can't solve (hard to find one now, but hey, worth the wait). The only other option is to wait for an Iscorama 54 to turn up, they are a lot cheaper than the others (people don't rate them, but they really are the best Iscorama MC or not) & it'll give you the diversity of numerous lens options, build quality & the weight you really need to film properly.

Start saving your cash, stop buying camera after camera & loosing yourself in this stupid search for perfection that doesn't exist - find the one you like right now & stick with it for a while. I'm not upgrading my BM Pocket for quite a while yet, as nothing comes close to the beautiful image quality that it produces - it's not perfect, but that IMAGE!!!!!!! If you continue to find problems with cameras, then you'll never be happy, cause there is no such thing as the perfect camera - never was, never will be.

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31 minutes ago, Bioskop.Inc said:

Budget & 4K are not things that hold any interest for me what-so-ever. If a camera doesn't deliver in ProRes, then it's a waste of time. The same goes for 4K, it's basically a cinema format that is a pipe dream for the large majority of consumers - damn, they can't even give us proper HD tv broadcasts yet!

This. Topic. Again. Is 4K good? Do we need 4K? I wrote budget 4:3 4K, because the next camera that can do native 4:3 anamorphic is the URSA Mini. But let's not push this conversation to off topic.

IMO, try to search after AGFA 1.5x anamorphot commonly known as Moller 19/1.5x, it's the focus through version of the Moller 8/19/1.5x. Cheaper than the Isco, quality wise: really sharp!

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1 hour ago, funkyou86 said:

IMO, try to search after AGFA 1.5x anamorphot commonly known as Moller 19/1.5x, it's the focus through version of the Moller 8/19/1.5x. Cheaper than the Isco, quality wise: really sharp!

Nice tip, didn't know that this existed or that Moller had a focus through - the image from a Moller is absolutely lovely!

Sharpness really comes from the taking lens & you're never going to reach the levels of just a lens when you add an attachment on the top - but I know what you mean, every little bit helps.

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29 minutes ago, Bioskop.Inc said:

Nice tip, didn't know that this existed or that Moller had a focus through - the image from a Moller is absolutely lovely!

Sharpness really comes from the taking lens & you're never going to reach the levels of just a lens when you add an attachment on the top - but I know what you mean, every little bit helps.

Here are some sample clips:

Sorry for the bad focus, i shot this handheld with the camera LCD only.

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4 hours ago, Justin Bacle said:

That's true that 4:3 cameras are difficult to come across, but the final results are worth it I think. (plus 1.5x anamorphics are just too damn expensive IMHO). But the convenience of 1.5X is valuable for sure !

GH4 4:3 mode was the option I went, but quickly gave up on that camera. I wasn't happy with the dynamic range, color, and low light. I'm back to apsc on a Sony, and satisfied so far.

 

4 hours ago, funkyou86 said:

Even Panasonic's budget line's got 4K 4:3 mode, and it's absolutely worth it.

I sold mine 1.5x anamorphot half a year ago, now I regret it :(

Start saving again for a 1.5x, I waited quite a long time to get my Isco-36. 

 

 

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On 11/16/2016 at 2:21 PM, Bioskop.Inc said:

Exactly, x1.5 is more than adequate & 2.66:1 is far easier to deal with.

It's only really the purists (with their cheap x2 dual focus adaptors) that advocate a x2 anamorphic, and you can only use one with a camera with a 4:3 option.

Hold your horses there! I'm calling full and utter BS on that last statement ? I use my 2X all the time with my NX1. It's 16:9. I get paid actual monies (several monies sometimes) specifically BECAUSE I shoot 2X! There are monitors that can desqueeze it and crop to 2.35:1. I have one. There are adaptors to make it single focus. I have one. Shooting with it? Easy as shooting with any standard prime lens.

 

In terms of "easier to deal with"? As in the post-production? Don't fool yourself, unless you're a fool (which I'm sure you're not). It's just math. Desqueeze ratios and aspect ratios. Vertical and horizontal resolution. All can be sorted with simple division, multiplication, subtraction or addition. 

 

If you feel the need to defend the 1.5X, that's fine, there are great 1.5X lenses and crappy 1.5X lenses, just like there are great and crappy 2X lenses. 

 

As as far as calling 2X users "purists"? I take offense. I'll put my "cheap" 2X up against what I can only assume is an Iscorama that you spent too much money on. But I'll tell you right now mine is sharper, the bokeh is more distorted, and the flares aren't yellow, they're blue. Oh, and it has a wider FOV (even when cropped to 2.35:1). 

 

Im all for everyone finding their own solution in anamorphic, but do the math, don't just make blanket statements.

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2 hours ago, Caleb Genheimer said:

Hold your horses there! I'm calling full and utter BS on that last statement ? I use my 2X all the time with my NX1. It's 16:9. I get paid actual monies (several monies sometimes) specifically BECAUSE I shoot 2X! There are monitors that can desqueeze it and crop to 2.35:1. I have one. There are adaptors to make it single focus. I have one. Shooting with it? Easy as shooting with any standard prime lens.

In terms of "easier to deal with"? As in the post-production? Don't fool yourself, unless you're a fool (which I'm sure you're not). It's just math. Desqueeze ratios and aspect ratios. Vertical and horizontal resolution. All can be sorted with simple division, multiplication, subtraction or addition. 

If you feel the need to defend the 1.5X, that's fine, there are great 1.5X lenses and crappy 1.5X lenses, just like there are great and crappy 2X lenses. 

As as far as calling 2X users "purists"? I take offense. I'll put my "cheap" 2X up against what I can only assume is an Iscorama that you spent too much money on. But I'll tell you right now mine is sharper, the bokeh is more distorted, and the flares aren't yellow, they're blue. Oh, and it has a wider FOV (even when cropped to 2.35:1).

Im all for everyone finding their own solution in anamorphic, but do the math, don't just make blanket statements.

Read the whole thread & then comment on the while discussion - not just on one post. Come on try a little bit, please! It isn't hard, or maybe it is?

What was being discussed, was whether you should crop or not & if you do how much resolution you loose by cropping. If you'd actually read my earlier posts, you'd see that I do use x2 Anamorphics on 16:9 sensors & I crop. My point, & raf702's, was that if cropping a x2 anamorphic on a 16:9 sensor really means that you loose so much resolution (to the detriment of the final image & especially if you're projecting on a big screen), then a x1.5 is a good compromise as you don't need to crop, since 2.66:1 is a nice size to finish with. You don't throw away any of the sensor's image & so don't loose any resolution.

I know sarcasm/humour doesn't translate well in a post, but if you'd actually read the whole thread then you would have been able to divine my comments about "x2 purists" was a joke! The part about cheap x2 anamorphics (which is why I put it in brackets) wasn't a joke & was an insult - those horrible sharp multi-coloured anamorphics just have zero anamorphic qualities, they are sterile rubbish & overpriced now. I've been posting on this forever & also on people getting ripped off spending way too much money on them.

And the, mine's sharper than your's BS - just grow up. Sharpness, when using an adaptor, is just as much about the taking lens, as it is about the actual adaptor.

Also, don't get jealous that I got into Iscorama's when they were cheap & yes I have a 54 (also had 3 36s & sold them for a very tidy profit!) - not because it is the sharpest (it's actually really good on that front if you use the right taking lens), but because it is heavy (so good for stabilisation), single focus (so no need for extra glass to infect the image), Multi-Coated (not a flare addict & helps with contrast & so perceived sharpness) & you are able to use a wider range of taking lenses with it.

I've got 2 x2 anamorphics (yes i've got a Kowa like you & it's exactly the same sharpness as my Iscorama - so there) & another x1.5 - the sharpest, by a long way, is the tiny Iscomorphot S8/x2 (the fixed focus one), which i've been using at the moment (go figure)!

But you're right, I'd never spend the amount some people spend on Iscoramas ATM & especially the tiny plastic ones, which are a liability/accident waiting to happen.

So, back to the discussion:

Do you loose a lot of resolution by cropping a x2 anamorphic on a 16:9 sensor or not? And, what do you mean by resolution when you use that term?

 

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Mine was meant to be humorous too, so if my snarky attitude came across wrong, apologies ?

 

Concerning "resolution" IMO there are two ways to cut it: numerical/objective resolution, and perceived/subjective resolution. One can be defined by calculating how many practical points of information are in your image (in our case, pixels). The other is based on how much detail the human eye perceives, and with anamorphic especially, the two are at odds. 

Objectively, you may say that by stretching a digital file by a factor of two, you have halved your numerical resolution. It is half as sharp. The catch is, though, top to bottom you have lost no sharpness. The image still has the same number of "lines" (in the case of 4K, 2160 lines). At this point, the temptation is to say, "ok, I may have lost half my resolution, but not half my sharpness. I've probably lost 1/4 of my sharpness." 

But subjectively, as the eye sees, the loss is even less. Because your vertical lines of resolution are all still there, you still have very near the original sharpness in many parts of the image. The eye picks this up, and the brain is frighteningly good at filling in the rest. Add to this that the images are changing constantly, and (all else being equal), you won't loose much perceived resolution at all over shooting spherical, even at 2X. 

The by-far most important thing has already been stated though: If you're delivering to web it doesn't matter. Most web watchers are in their phone or tablet, most of which are not 4K, or even 1080p. The minimal loss in sharpness/resolution won't even make it past the compression to be honest, but the stylistic differences in the image will. That's why I prefer 2X, as it can be more pronounced. But 1.5X also looks great, it's just a preference.

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If you’re delivering to cinema, it hardly matters. Most festivals still ask for 2K DCPs or even Blu-Ray. 

On a good cinema projector, a 2K DCP looks exceptional if you master it properly.

I’ve been shooting 2X for almost a decade, before there were affordable monitors, 4K/high DR DSLRs, or single focus solutions. Composition rules apply even if the image is squashed. 

Wether you crop the sides or not, stretch 2X or 1.5X, the vertical lines of resolution remain the same. Perceived resolution is a funny thing.

It’s infinitely more important to get a sharp scope and a taking lens that works well with it... and then to nail your focus.

I prefer a 2X scope for the look, and the potential inconveniences are easily solved. The single most helpful tool with any anamorphic is a good monitor that can desqueeze and crop your image. Do yourself a favor and grab a SmallHD that runs the latest firmware. It’ll desqueeze and crop to any configuration. 

Anamorphic is just something you have to jump into and learn for yourself. It’s comparatively easy to do these days. Pick a scope and start experimenting, learn your rig and adjust your setup as you encounter things you want to improve.

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