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Forget Max 8, go anamorphic.


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#1 Will von Tagen

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 07:15 PM

I just wanted to share with everyone the support mount and adapter I built to attach a Sankor 2.33:1 anamorphic lens (this was a surprise, I bought it thinking it was a 2x, but after testing it, i realized it was a 1.75x) to my canon 1014 AZ-E. I built it for under $20 using little parts picked out at a near by ACE Hardware store. I actually impressed myself with how well it came together, considering I went to the store with no real plans drawn up.

Joining the camera to the Lens I attached a simple Polarized Filter (with the filter glass removed), attached that to a 58mm-67mm step up ring. The ring is then attached to a lens hood, which was screwed onto the Anamorphic lens. This allows me to adjust the focus ring without moving the Anamorpher.

I was able to get the hood, step up ring and polarizer for about $7 by digging through the Misc. used accessories box at my local camera shop.

*Lens alignment looks slightly crooked because I did a quick reassembly for the picture after doing some tests with a video camera earlier.
anamorph.jpg


I also want to voice my opinion on anamorphic filming is the way to go as opposed to Max 8. Not only is the aspect ratio more fun to work with, but you are actually using the entire area of the film as opposed to having nearly 1/4 of it cropped out. This yields in higher image quality, and you don't have to worry about staying "inside the lines" to avoid having a part of your work getting cut.

You can still get the High Def. Scan if you choose, and instruct the telecine operator weather to have it morphed to 16:9 or leave it stretched with letter box on the sides. Either way, you will be un-morphing it in post to get the proper aspect ratio. You can also get great results doing a home HD telecine.

True, there are a few disadvantages to shooting it anamorphed, but they are easily remedied.

1. True, you usually have to be zoomed in at least 20mm to avoid seeing the inside of the lens, but you can simply plan your shoots around this by allowing your self space to be far enough back that it wont matter.

2. A big issue is that with an Anamorphic lens you usually have to be at least a meter or so away from the subject to have it in clear focus. This is easily remedied by placing a Diopter in front of the Anamorph. I have been mere inches away from the subject and still have it in clean focus using a 4+ diopter (the down side is the extremely shallow DoF, but I think that is to be expected filming in close proximity).

3. Distortion of vertical lines. Just always be sure you have the camera mounted on a leveled tripod. Once that is done, the horizontal field will never change and you shouldn't run into any distortion. (if for some reason you do, you can simply correct this in post, in much the same way that you used to correct the aspect ratio. True, with the lens you cannot have any oblique angle shots, but I think it is worth the trade off.

Sorry if I've just rambled off a bunch of stuff that you already might know, but I figured a few people could benefit off my trials and errors.

All in all, I got the lens off ebay for $80 (including shipping), and I built the mount for roughly $27. As a result, I can now shoot widescreen 8mm, and I didn't have to fork over the $1500 or what ever it is that Pro 8mm charges to basically cheat you out of even more film area than they already do. (referring to the cropping and under-loaded cartridges.)

Edited by Will von Tagen, 27 January 2009 - 07:20 PM.

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#2 Jim Carlile

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 08:08 PM

For years there was a big anamorphic widescreen movement, where people would cobble together all sorts of modifications. I'd think the only problem with anamorphic vs. 'full frame' widescreen would be in the transfering to HD or whatever.

How are the results onscreen?
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#3 Will von Tagen

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 10:10 PM

I'd think the only problem with anamorphic vs. 'full frame' widescreen would be in the transfering to HD or whatever.


http://www.pro8mm.co...aming_setup.pdf


This page shows the framing options that Pro 8mm offers for their HD transfers. The very last one shows the ideal option for an anamorphic scan. In Final cut, you have the option to "distort" the frame, this is where you can stretch out the image to fill the full 16:9 frame. Then you adjust the aspect ratio within it to get the true 2.33:1 (or what ever it is you're shooting with). When played on a HD TV, it looks how any 2.33:1 movie would look on a 16:9 TV screen.

Doing a DIY HD telecine with a camcorder goes the much the same way.

Edited by Will von Tagen, 27 January 2009 - 10:11 PM.

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#4 Marc Guerriero

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 10:49 PM

Are there any 1.39 Anamorphic lenses to bring it exactly to the 1.85:1 aspect ratio?
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#5 Moises Perez

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Posted 28 January 2009 - 02:15 AM

Hi everyone,
My name is Moises, but you can call me moy for short. I'm also experimenting with my canon 1014 E with an anamorphic adaptor instead of Max8, Super Duper or whatever other name it has. I'm using the Century Optics 0SD-WS13-58 a 1.33 X converter with 58mm thread which is the same as the filter size of the 1014 E. At the beginning, it was very difficult and frustrating for me to use it, since I was using the canon 1014 XLS and this camera has a filter thread of 62mm. I used a step down ring but it didn't work for me. The test I shot came with a light, but very distracting vignette on the wider focal length of the lens. I was disappointed, but then I changed to the 1014 E and that was it! I've been very happy with the results. The film was scanned to uncompressed, direct to disk, HD 10 bit 4:2:2 1080p and here is an still sample grabbed from my last film test. S8HD1080_low.jpg The picture lost resolution and the color has fade out because I had to compressed it a lot to be able to post it here, but the original file looks much better. I will post a picture of my camera setting and give you more information on the process I'm using to get a 16 x 9 picture without cropping the image.
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#6 Jim Carlile

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Posted 28 January 2009 - 11:03 PM

Hey Moy, I love it ! It looks great-- nice composition, too. Is it from a movie you are making?
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#7 Moises Perez

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Posted 29 January 2009 - 08:14 PM

Thanks Jim,
No, this particular roll was a film test I shot just to see whether the camera set-up will work and to see the results transfered to HD. But I'm actually considering the possibilities of using Super 8 film for my next project.
I'll keep you informed.
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#8 Daniel Syvertsen

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 04:38 AM

If anyone has got actual footage I'd love to see it. Been toying with the idea of shooting a short anamorphic on my Canon 1014 XL-S.
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#9 Will Montgomery

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 10:15 AM

I applaud the effort and it certainly has it's place in a filmmaker's toolbox. My only issue with it is the complexity and non-portability of it.

One of the great things about Super 8 is being able to pickup a camera and shoot without much preparation and in tight situations. You're rig doesn't quite allow for that and if I was going to have time to setup and do an anamorphic shoot I'd much prefer simply to shoot 16mm or even 16mm in anamorphic since the rig wouldn't be that much bigger.

That being said, it's still a great setup even if not completely practical.
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#10 Will von Tagen

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 03:30 PM

I applaud the effort and it certainly has it's place in a filmmaker's toolbox. My only issue with it is the complexity and non-portability of it.

One of the great things about Super 8 is being able to pickup a camera and shoot without much preparation and in tight situations. You're rig doesn't quite allow for that and if I was going to have time to setup and do an anamorphic shoot I'd much prefer simply to shoot 16mm or even 16mm in anamorphic since the rig wouldn't be that much bigger.

That being said, it's still a great setup even if not completely practical.



Thanks for the feed back. I actually shoot 8 because you can get a great look for fairly cheap, much cheaper than 16 I have found. The mount actually attaches right to a tripod, and since I wouldn't shoot 8 without a tripod any way, it really isn't too inconvenient. Glad you like it though!

Will
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#11 Paul Bruening

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 05:19 PM

I'm quite impressed with your results. I hope to see more of it.
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#12 Scott Bullock

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Posted 01 February 2009 - 05:17 PM

I like the rig but it looks like Moises has the right answer in using the Century Optics adapter. With Moy's rig, the portability advantage of shooting Super 8 would remain intact. Also, since the Century lens is designed for 1/3" video cameras, it would seem that you'd retain most if not all of your shorter focal lengths. Then again, the Century adapter would only allow for an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 while Will's will allow you to stretch to 2.33:1. Both are very interesting concepts. It might be time for me to dig out my 1014 E again....

Edited by Scott Bullock, 01 February 2009 - 05:18 PM.

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#13 retoxproductions

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Posted 18 March 2013 - 05:37 PM

I have the same Century Optics 16:9 as Moises  (thanks to his advise), but would like to use it on 1014xl or beaulieu 4000zm4. Also a friend said I could borrow his Leica Special. How would it work on any of these cams?


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#14 Maurizio Di Cintio

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 11:34 AM

Hi there! Are these Century Optics CS adapters still manufatcured? If not, where can I buy one? Thanx


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#15 Rudy Velez Jr

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Posted 29 April 2013 - 05:23 PM

very cool stuff


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#16 Chris Burke

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 01:38 PM

You can find many different types of anamorphic adapters/lenses on eBay. I purchased a Century Optics 1.33x anamorphic adapter and have tested it on several digital cameras, although I bought it to use on Super 8 and am still working out the set up for a Beaulieu 4008. It flares beautifully, with a nice blue horizontal streak. Rather sharp as well.  Very classic looking. I agree, the max 8 gates really are not worth it. I couldn't tell the difference between max 8 footage and a regular gate zoomed to fit 16:9. With an anamorphic lens, you do get the full frame and more flaring and bokeh, if that is what you want.


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#17 Will Montgomery

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 04:11 PM


Thanks for the feed back. I actually shoot 8 because you can get a great look for fairly cheap, much cheaper than 16 I have found. 

I actually moved to 16mm because I was finding better quality for not much more in price; as long as I'm transferring on a high-end machine. Film and processing is more but the quality is amazing. That being said, the new 50D will probably be a great option.


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