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Vintage Lenses For Video Work

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    Vintage Lenses For Video Work

    Anyone shooting Nikon AIS's or E series? If so, what's your kit? Also, if anyone here is shooting with a 35mm focal length of a vintage lens, what's your thoughts with it on a M43 body and/or M43/speedbooster setup? I'm looking at purchasing a Nikon 35mm 2.0 AIS. I think it could be a great addition that could be my all day lens for wedding work. Let me know!

    Also, this was shot mostly on the Pocket 4k at 8:1. I baked in my Buttery LUT and applied a very low opacity creative LUT in Premiere (Kodak 250D).

    Some GH5 footage and a couple of C100MKII shots as well.


    #2
    I have a mess of the things... a small set of Olympus OM Zuikos, a Vivitar Series 1 28-90, a pair of Nikon Micro-Nikkors, and the main ones that get use, a mixed set of Leica R Summilux/Summicrons converted to Nikon mount.

    Metabones does the best job with focal reducers in their SpeedBooster line.
    Pudgy bearded camera guy
    http://mcbob.tv

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      #3
      Here's my hodgepodge lens set:

      Tokina 11-16mm
      Sony 16-50mm
      Sigma 17-50mm
      Sony 18-105mm
      Nikon 24mm D
      Tokina 24-40mm (some haze)
      Nikon 28-80mm D
      Nikon 35mm AI
      Nikon 50mm D
      Nikon 55-200mm (f/4-5.6)
      Hasselblad 80mm CF (on semi-permanent loan from my Dad)
      Olympus 135mm OM
      Vivitar 200mm MD

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        #4
        I love the Ais lenses. The 28mm Ais is a very special lens. However, I've effed up focus on more than one occasion because of owning lenses with both types of focus direction. I finally got tired of it and sold off my Nikon direction lenses. I need to stick with one direction and since I will always own at least some m43 lenses, the Nikon's had to go.

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          #5
          The 35mm 2.0 AIS is a great lens. It might be a touch long for an all day lens, even with a speedbooster, there could be tight spaces it won't be great for. The 24mm f2 might be more flexible.
          Last edited by Batutta; 06-19-2020, 10:16 AM.
          "Money doesn't make films...You just do it and take the initiative." - Werner Herzog

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            #6
            I've been contemplating switching over to Metabones. I use the Viltrox and it almost does the same, I just wish it could maintain it's sharpness when my lenses are opened up! Those summicrons and simmilux sound nice, I'm jealous!

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              #7
              Originally posted by Batutta View Post
              The 35mm 2.0 AIS is a great lens. It might be a touch long for an all day lens, even with a speedbooster, there could be tight spaces it won't be great for. The 24mm f2 might be more flexible.
              Totally, I'd love to get my hands on a 2.0 24mm. Around a 35mm FF equivalent with the speedbooster. That sounds about right!

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                #8
                Originally posted by ozmorphasis View Post
                I love the Ais lenses. The 28mm Ais is a very special lens. However, I've effed up focus on more than one occasion because of owning lenses with both types of focus direction. I finally got tired of it and sold off my Nikon direction lenses. I need to stick with one direction and since I will always own at least some m43 lenses, the Nikon's had to go.
                same

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                  #9
                  Vintage Yashica ML with Yashica/Contax (C/Y) mount, adapted to EF with a MetaBones Speed Booster.

                  24mm f/2.8
                  35mm f/2.8
                  50mm f/1.4

                  They didn’t make an 85mm in this series, so I got a close approximation, a Zeiss Contax 85mm f/1.4. Also C/Y mount adapted to EF.

                  I had a set of these many years ago, minus the 85mm, and sold them a while back. Within a few months, I regretted selling them off. I rebuilt the set over the last couple of years.
                  Knoxville-based location sound mixer.

                  Instagram @sonolocus

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by Ashbury View Post
                    Those summicrons and summilux sound nice, I'm jealous!
                    The set is an Elmarit 28, Summilux 35, Summicron 50 and Summicron 90. I kind of lucked out and found them being sold off used at a local camera store right before Shane Hurlbut started blabbing and raising used R prices by 20x. They'd belonged to NatGeo photographer Bill Allard who told the shop he sold them to that he found them bumping around in his camper. The Summilux 35 in particular was externally beat to hell Glass and mechanisms were still good, though, and it's nifty to know that most of them were used on his extended "Vanishing Breed" series, amongst other projects.
                    Pudgy bearded camera guy
                    http://mcbob.tv

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                      #11
                      I have a set of the Nikon Ai and AIs lenses. The look nice, I used to use them a lot but their flaring, CA and low contrast in bright sun is really bad. Good for indoor shoots though.
                      It's a business first and a creative outlet second.
                      G.A.S. destroys lives. Stop buying gear that doesn't make you money.

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                        #12
                        I'm going to put a good word in here for the Rokinon Cine DS series. They're not vintage and they're currently in production, but:

                        1. They're slightly softer than modern lenses so they have a vintage feel
                        2. They have a nice amount of flare but generally they have modern coatings and maintain contrast way better than old lenses (which is either a good thing or a bad thing, but for wedding work there are lots of backlit situations and situations with a lot of practical lights or candles that will give you some strong veiling glare you can't control. May be a good thing but may be too much)
                        3. The cine ds series has been color matched so they can intercut smoothly

                        I don't know why people dont appreciate the Rokinons more. Maybe it's because they're cheap and have plastic bodies and they're modern and not vintage. I find them to have nice character and be very usable for broad purposes because their coatings can handle strong backlight without going crazy

                        And if you really want a good deal you can buy the still photo versions. Only difference is no focus and aperture gears and no extra color matching effort.
                        Last edited by ahalpert; 06-20-2020, 05:26 AM.
                        www.VideoAbe.com

                        "If you’re really in favor of free speech, then you’re in favor of freedom of speech for precisely the views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of free speech." - Noam Chomsky

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                          #13
                          It worries my that Ai lenses are vintage.. it makes me vintage.

                          But those lenses were current when I started working and I was buying for sharpness not 'a look' - I shot loads of slide film which I suggest is sharper than any old arri 65 and one could not see aberations.

                          Yes maybe they flare, a french flag is the thing.

                          Anyway good copies are IMO sharp enough and dont have vintage feel.

                          A review should immediately throw up the focus spin direction which is a major pita. Thats why ive bought a few canon FDs.. similar but the spin goes the 'normal' way.

                          As for focus friction.. a well oiled ones should have the perfect drag.. it is possible to find 'dry' lenses today (bad)

                          Type Es were a pile cheaper and the wides can have a short throw.
                          http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

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                            #14
                            I like my AIS primes enough not to have switched them out. They flare but it's not unpleasant. They're sharp enough but still have slightly softer look to them that's hard to describe. Other than my Kern Switar set (16mm coverage), they are still the only prime set that I own. I did a lot of research before going this route. Here's what I settled on:

                            18mm f/3.5
                            28mm f/2.8
                            50mm f/1.8
                            85mm f/2

                            I bought them back before Rokinon/Samyang was making cine lenses and spent a hefty sum at Duclos having them declicked and geared. They typically only come out for narrative work or when I need smooth manual pull (I have a reversible follow focus which helps with the pull direction). I've been leaning heavily on Canon lenses with DPAF for paid work lately so they haven't seen much action in a few years.
                            Last edited by QuickHitRecord; 06-20-2020, 10:36 AM.
                            QuickHitRecord.com

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                              #15
                              Sold my Nikon AI(S) set a while back, but the 35mm f/2.0 was my favorite Rock and Roll lens for "environmental portrait" stuff. Super sharp with amazing contrast.
                              Try to find a Vivitar Series 1 90mm f/2.5 macro lens...arguably one of the sharpest lenses ever for 35mm photography. Used it on my Eclair ACL ll 16mm camera; also 35mm spots with an Arri adaptor.

                              Ken

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