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How lens Change from Format to Format


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#1 Merlyn Haycraft

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Posted 06 July 2007 - 11:53 AM

Hello all,

I'm curious to find out what the comparative focal lengths are for different formats. For example what a 35 mm lens for a Super 16mm camera would be on a 35mm Camera and also on a standard SLR still photography camera.

I have only worked with Super 16 and so reading an article about Kubrick mainly using an 18mm lens for Eyes Wide Shut doesn't give me enough of an idea about which kind of lens it is exactly, other than is it pretty wide.

So if anyone knows the differences between 35mm, Super 16mm and SLR's or a formula that can be applied, it would be good to know.

Cheers,

Merlyn :)
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#2 Nick Mulder

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Posted 06 July 2007 - 02:56 PM

http://www.panavision.com/tools.php
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#3 Chris Keth

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Posted 06 July 2007 - 08:09 PM

Focal lengths DON'T CHANGE when used with different formats. A 35mm lens is a 35mm lens on 8mm and it is a 35mm lens on 65mm. The only thing that changes is field of view. A 35mm lens will be long on 8mm, mildly long on 16mm, slightly wide on 35mm, and really wide on 65mm.
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#4 Adam Frisch FSF

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Posted 10 July 2007 - 05:30 PM

Well, this happens daily to me:

I put a camera list in - this was todays list to Panavision London.

LENSES:
Ultra 16 T1.3's: 8mm, 9,5mm, 12mm, 14mm
Zeiss Super Speeds: 18mm, 25mm, 35mm, 50mm, 85mm
Zeiss Planar: 180mm

They come back to me and say, we can't do all of those, but we can give you this:

Optex 8mm
Zeiss Super 16: 9,5mm, 12mm
Ultra Prime T1.9: 14mm
Zeiss Super Speeds: 18mm, 25mm, 35mm, 50mm, 85mm
Zeiss Planar: 180mm

Spot the odd one out.

The fact is that most people, and most rental houses, don't understand that a 14mm Ultra Prime isn't the same thing as the 14mm Ultra 16 lens. They're not interchangable and they don't have the same field of view. That's why the "a 35mm lens i s a 35mm lens is a 35mm lens, no matter what format" is in everyday terms misleading. Yes, it is correct, but since we measure FIELD OF VIEW for any GIVEN FORMAT in FOCAL LENGTHS OF MM, we end up with misunderstandings combined with misinformation.

I kid you not, this happens on every job and every list I put in. They can't provide the lenses asked for? Just swap them for the same focal lenght but for a completely different format and it'll be fine, they seem to think. No, it's not, and it drives me nuts.

I curse the people that introduced field of view represented as a focal lenght in mm.
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