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letus anamorphic


johnwe
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Hmmmm...the Letus is basically invisible here.  You don't get any anamorphic aesthetic just "scope" aspect ratio without cropping, which is to be expected more or less in the daylight exteriors but curious for the night stuff and interiors at the train station.  I don't like the highlights at all compared to your better GH1/GH2 or maybe even GH3 videos.  It's videos like these that would prevent me from ever considering a GH4.

 

That sounds awful.  Maybe it's just bad encoding.

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I'm not liking the look or form factor of the Letus.  I wonder also if the GH4 footage was shot with the stock settings.  Looks oversharpened like the GH3 at stock setting.  I know we should be able to lower the sharpening at least.  And the night scene outside Grand Central wasn't good at all.  I'm also wondering about the flare from the Letus.  Looks like almost nothing in the footage, yet the tests from earlier in this thread showed some excellent flaring.  What gives?  It can't just be the panasonic lens can it?

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it does make me chuckle when big companies try and capitalise on a current fad without really understanding why the fad actually became so.   They've done what BMW did with the MINI.  Take the essence of something great then remove all of the qualities that made the original great in the first place.  

 

Just how purists laugh at 'New MINI' owners driving around in their oversized Fisher Price car, The guys with the humble Sankors, Kowas etc and Helios 44's will laugh at the guys running around with these nasties on the front of their L lenses trying to get the look and feel of a lomo for a movie about a financial services corporation or tacky wedding.

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@BurnetRhoades I have to believe some of this is operator error.  I cannot believe companies like Panasonic and Letus use these people for tests or let these kinds of things go out...basically useless.  

 

In general we know that 1.33x adapters lack full anamorphic character but still provide some advantages over spherical cropping in my opinion. 

 

Just wish I could get some hard info on the Letus.  My LA7200 works amazingly on the 12-35 F2.8...I want something that works well on the 35-100 as well...maybe I should be buying an SLR Magic and using both of them interchangeably...

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Well, they can't control what folks put out there really.  There are plenty of unfortunately bad demonstrations of the GH2 and months of consistently bad examples for pretty much any model of Blackmagic camera that has come out.  Let's not forget the well-meaning but face-palm inducing fellows uploading un-graded LOG footage.  That's just Bad Idea Jeans.

 

1.33x adapters can have great character relative to spherical but getting there maybe isn't as "gimme" as with higher compression lenses.  At the end of the day there is still great value in being able to avoid cropping for a "scope" aspect ratio.  It maintains maximum use of your sensor, has some resolving benefits and, in the case of AVCHD or 422, reduces artifacts of both compression and color sub-sampling.  If it did nothing more that would still be an advantage but there are aesthetic benefits if you shoot to play these up.  In the case of this video the shooter just didn't, for whatever reason.  The Letus does seem to make some of them a lot harder to do.

 

I'm not getting rid of my Century Optics when I make a permanent acquisition of the Anamorphot, because the CE works well on my 14-42mm Lumix @18mm and can even auto-focus just fine.  But the CO smears at the edges, like the LA7200 and like the Letus seems to in several examples.  There might be times where this is useful as part of the aesthetic.  That might shock a lot of VIMEO all-stars but it happens in the selection of cine anamorphics all the time.

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We agree on 1.33x lenses in general and I'm also with you on smearing in real life... 'The Mission' is a great inspirational example of this for me, Academy Award Winning Anamorphic Cinematography...edges look like an LA7200 all the time.  

 

I know companies can't control what random people put out but these guys got preproduction GH4s and free Letus' to play with and I just think it's a waste of everyone's time.  I see enough bad LA7200 videos and know my own results that I suspect the Letus may work for me, but I'd like to know for sure before dropping $2,700.  

 

I know people hate Panasonic lenses sometimes but I swear I'm getting a lot of mileage out of a 12-35 and an LA7200.  If I had a damn way of using the 35-100mm reliably I think I'd cave for whatever the solution was...even if it means having more than one adapter or some kind of diopter solution.  I'm just afraid of being light on close-ups shots and cheating some in and cropping is fine but it's not the same as we know well.

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We agree on 1.33x lenses in general and I'm also with you on smearing in real life... 'The Mission' is a great inspirational example of this for me, Academy Award Winning Anamorphic Cinematography...edges look like an LA7200 all the time.  

 

I know companies can't control what random people put out but these guys got preproduction GH4s and free Letus' to play with and I just think it's a waste of everyone's time.  I see enough bad LA7200 videos and know my own results that I suspect the Letus may work for me, but I'd like to know for sure before dropping $2,700.  

 

I know people hate Panasonic lenses sometimes but I swear I'm getting a lot of mileage out of a 12-35 and an LA7200.  If I had a damn way of using the 35-100mm reliably I think I'd cave for whatever the solution was...even if it means having more than one adapter or some kind of diopter solution.  I'm just afraid of being light on close-ups shots and cheating some in and cropping is fine but it's not the same as we know well.

I was reluctant to sell my LA7200 but I swear the SLR Magic Anamorphot is the better option.  If you have the money then I would say own both.  LA7200 is excellent for super wides, but you can use diopters so easy on the SLR Magic.  Plus the two diopters they sell are really worth it.  Very sharp, although heavy, glass that really does wonders for closeup shots.  BTW I never got smearing with GH2/3 with the LA7200 unless I went over 180mm.

 

I just got the 12-35mm X lens and I really like it too.  Has to be at F2.8 to even get close to shallow depth of field, but I really like it.  Great fast focus, IS works great and it's sharp too.  Not clinically sharp like most Panasonic lenses but really good.  I think Sean (BR) should really reconsider selling that old 14-42mm and get the 12-35mm X lens instead.  Footage looks way better and the IS helps a lot.

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Thanks Nahua...I am leaning towards the combo of LA and SLR if I can get my hands on one in relatively short order as long as they work on the long end.  

 

I am confused by up to 180mm working on a GH2/3 with the LA7200 however?!  I get that weird inability to focus much beyond 50mm, have tried a Rokinon 85, Panasonic 35-100 and a few more telephoto options!

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@Nahua at 180mm you had to be using a diopter and in a fairly extreme ECU situation, no?  Or are you using one that's been modified so that front and rear element can be manually adjusted?  Is any of that in one of the videos you might have online?

 

The longest prime that I have is the Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 and I need to do some more shots but it seems like it'll be useful with the Anamorphot at a decent stop.  I had to be so stopped down when pairing it with my Century Optics that I only tried it the one time and never messed with it again.  After that I've only got a couple big zooms which are more useful for personal defense than anamorphic shooting.

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@Nahua at 180mm you had to be using a diopter and in a fairly extreme ECU situation, no?  Or are you using one that's been modified so that front and rear element can be manually adjusted?  Is any of that in one of the videos you might have online?

 

The longest prime that I have is the Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 and I need to do some more shots but it seems like it'll be useful with the Anamorphot at a decent stop.  I had to be so stopped down when pairing it with my Century Optics that I only tried it the one time and never messed with it again.  After that I've only got a couple big zooms which are more useful for personal defense than anamorphic shooting.

@ Sean sorry I got my focal lengths mixed up.  85mm for M4/3 which is 170mm FF.  But I even got my 100mm Macro to work with the LA7200 on my GH3.  The LA7200 doesn't work well with my Canon 5DmkIII though, so nothing over 100mm was in focus.  Also my Canon 70-200mm never worked with anamorphics either.  I think it's too complex with too many elements.  Always the simplest optics work the best.  I guess that's why all these old lenses work so well.  Small front element with few elements inside.

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Its a huge but simple anamorphic block.

You can rack focus through it to some extent.

It s not fussy seems to work with most lenses including very fast canon 85mm and 50mm 1.2

Not a lot of character (but some) and works and works very close  (5cm) without adding other secondary optical elements.

Flares very little.

Importantly it goes as wide as 35mm on full frame and of course superwide on smaller frames.

Pretty expensive especially for non USA buyers.

Variable ND filter could be problematic.

My opnion is that its a very useful tool for Canon 5D shooters in particular, adding about 25 percent more information when trying to achieve anaomorphic aspect ratios and working with their exisiting high end canon glass.

As of now a unique product.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Letus is really okay, dont undersatnd why people are criticising it so much  just because  someone hasnt shot bladerunner 2 on it,  but to big for what i want to do, SLR magic really interesting but a different fish, generally im not sure now the 1.33x stretch with these two  modern solutions  is enough to justify all the extra work.  Currently testing some classic 1.5x anamorphots. Selling the letus as we speak, probbaly the slr magic at a later point. no disrespect to either product. no one perfect camera  no one perfect lens.

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I guess it's a balance of performance, size and price.  Letus has two of them - big price and big size - literally.  But performance - haven't seen enough footage to justify it.  SLR Magic has done a great job and they really balanced it out well.  The look is personal preference of course.  There is a difference in look for 1.5x-2x anamorphics no doubt.  But the practical side is hard - affording very expensive optics - whether it be Iscorama or Panavisions or Hawks; and also the physical size as well.  For small personal projects or indie films, you can't go wrong with a small 1.33x adapter that you can handhold.  Letus just seems way too large to handhold.  In any case, I wish you luck finding the right adapter. 

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Yeah, @procter not sure it's about seeing a blade-runner II so much as seeing something like what Sean just posted for the SLR Magic...5-10 minutes of footage in differing situations focusing on the fly, moving around, etc.  Letus has been quiet about answering questions and most clips are short.  If you want to sell it, maybe you should shoot some more hahah :)

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