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p+s adaptor


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#1 Rhys Votano

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 08:50 AM

I am using a z1 to shoot a short film but am struggling with getting a nice soft depth of field. I have looked at getting a p+s adaptor however i am still uncertain as to which lens i should then afix to the adaptor. im looking for one that will give me the same soft depth that was achieved in gus van sants films. any help?
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#2 Andrew Koch

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 06:00 PM

First, go to the "My Controls" link in the upper righthand portion of the page and change your screen name to your Full first and last name as this is a requirement of this forum. The other issue is that you posted in the 35mm section. 35mm on the forum only refers to 35mm film, not 35mm adaptors. The place to post is under HD under Sony (Prosumer) since you are using the Z1, which is a sony prosumer camera. I am not saying this to pick on you, it's just that you will probably get better responses since readers will have a better reference point when trying to be of assistance. Now, onto the question.

Are you planning on renting or buying? The P+S is pretty expensive (I think it is about $2500) and quality glass is even more expensive. A set of zeiss superspeeds are now selling for over $20,000 (they used to be about half that new back in the 80s, but with the RED and all of the adaptors out there, the supply can't meet the demand). Basically, what I'm saying is that you might be better off renting.

In your question, you ask which lens should you affix to the adaptor, implying that you only plan to use one lens. Are you planning on shooting the entire film at a fixed focal length? You said you want "soft depth." I'm asssuming you mean shallow depth of field. In "Elephant" the DOF is very shallow most of the time. One major factor is that the camera focuses to the foreground actors who appear to be pretty close to the camera, although it's been a while and I can't remember if the lenses were long or medium. Close focus often yields pretty shallow DOF. The film also appears to be shot on a pretty wide iris (possibly completely open, but don't quote me on this).

So consider using lenses that are longer in focal length, such as 85mm or 135mm, and lenses that are fast, such as the zeiss superspeeds which open up to T1.3 You can rent a set of 5 (18mm, 25mm, 35mm, 50mm, and 85mm) for about $300 a day, although I prefer to stop down to a 2 or 2.8 when I can. The lenses perform better stopped down a bit. Ultra prime lenses are really great, but much more expensive. You can still get shallow depth of field on medium lenses if you subject is close to the camera and you shoot at a wide stop. Hope this helps
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