Jump to content


Matte Box Selection


  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 Rick Pearson

Rick Pearson
  • Guests

Posted 08 June 2005 - 07:54 AM

I don't know if anyone here can help me on this, but I'm looking at various matte boxes. I want to purchase it for use on my XL1s, which is my current camera, but I would like to be able to use it on larger cameras as well.

I use an XL1s on my own work, a 610 DVCPro for my day job, and I would like to be able to use it for HD and HDV cameras as well. Obviously I'm not interested in any of the DV matteboxes that companies offer, I know the price will be high, but flexibility is a must.

Do matteboxes offer such flexibility, if I choose the correct one will I be able to fit it to a large variety of cameras with no more than a step down ring?

Thanks in advance for any helpful answers.
  • 0

#2 drew_town

drew_town
  • Sustaining Members
  • 383 posts
  • Camera Operator
  • Southeast US

Posted 08 June 2005 - 08:25 AM

Do matteboxes offer such flexibility, if I choose the correct one will I be able to fit it to a large variety of cameras with no more than a step down ring?

I think so. You may need a set of rods if you ever use an external focus lens that requires them. I think oversizing is okay. Just so that the box isn't too small for one of your larger cameras/lenses.
  • 0

#3 Tim J Durham

Tim J Durham
  • Sustaining Members
  • 742 posts
  • Director
  • East Coast, Baby!

Posted 09 June 2005 - 06:34 AM

I don't know if anyone here can help me on this, but I'm looking at various matte boxes. I want to purchase it for use on my XL1s, which is my current camera, but I would like to be able to use it on larger cameras as well.

I use an XL1s on my own work, a 610 DVCPro for my day job, and I would like to be able to use it for HD and HDV cameras as well. Obviously I'm not interested in any of the DV matteboxes that companies offer, I know the price will be high, but flexibility is a must.

Do matteboxes offer such flexibility, if I choose the correct one will I be able to fit it to a large variety of cameras with no more than a step down ring?

Thanks in advance for any helpful answers.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Hi Rick,
I did the same search you are now doing and I ended up buying this one:

http://www.cavision....tbox/4x5_65.htm

I own an XL-2 but in my day job I shoot with other peoples cameras and lenses so I needed it to be as versatile as possible. I also bought a Sony, a Panasonic, and a Canon system plate (which holds the support rods) and their entire selection of step-down rings so I can theoretically use it on front element diameters of 72mm all the way up to 120mm.

Call them and ask to speak with Jason Connors. He knows what you'll need and the price was right, about half the cost of similar Chrosziel system.

The only problem I have with their system is the step-down rings are not the greatest and the top and side flags, unlike the Chrosziel, are solid and do not have extenders. You'll see what I mean
if you compare the two. But they had to cut back somewhere to make it 50% of the cost of the Chroziel.

They also sell a follow-focus unit but I don't have that yet.

The other system I seriously considered buying was from TLS in the UK:

http://www.truelens....matte/index.htm

If you call them, they are very engaging lads however they did not have any of the model I wanted built at the time (right before NAB no less!). The one to get is called the "Raven" which is a new model for them and not on their website. But if you call or e-mail them, they will tell you everything you need and are very patient. I feel bad for not waiting for them to build me one but I needed it sooner. Nice guys all around.

I suspect TLS is of a higher build-quality than Cavision but it is also more expensive. In between Cavision and Chrosziel, but they were keen to throw things into the package at a discount.

Cheers
  • 0

#4 Brian Wells

Brian Wells
  • Sustaining Members
  • 438 posts
  • Other

Posted 09 June 2005 - 06:54 AM

Obviously I'm not interested in any of the DV matteboxes that companies offer, I know the price will be high, but flexibility is a must.

What's the negative connotation of DV matteboxes? I'm just trying to understand as you're wanting to use it with a DV camera... My personal choice is the Vocas MKII Wide for several reasons.

I feel it's built rugged enough (made of carbon fibre) and it's lightweight, which is nice. It costs about the same as Chrosziel but offers much more flexibility in setup for different lenses. Instead of "step-down" rings that must be purchased specific for each lens, the one I've got included these cut-outs that fit into the rear of the box for different lenses--so it's compatible with a variety of lenses right out of the box. What I didn't like about the other brands is they required adapters for different lenses and this one was more universal. Century Optics distributes them here in the states.

Hope this helps.
bw
  • 0

#5 drew_town

drew_town
  • Sustaining Members
  • 383 posts
  • Camera Operator
  • Southeast US

Posted 09 June 2005 - 02:41 PM

What's the negative connotation of DV matteboxes?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

If he ever wanted to use it on a camera with a larger diameter lens it would likely be too small. DV matte boxes are built for a dv camera's small diameter lens. Filter size also comes into account. A 3x3 filter will not work on most broadcast lenses because they will not cover the entire field of view.
  • 0

#6 Brian Wells

Brian Wells
  • Sustaining Members
  • 438 posts
  • Other

Posted 09 June 2005 - 03:31 PM

Oh okay. The one I have takes 4x4 filters and will handle lenses upto 105mm in outside diameter and wide angle of 3.6mm (in 1/3" format) without vignetting. I'm not sure what that translates to in terms of viewing angle for use with lenses on a bigger format. My guess would be that most wide angle lenses will work okay considering this is the "wide angle matte box" Vocas lists compatability for many different video lenses on their website, www.vocas.com. Hope this helps.

Brian

If he ever wanted to use it on a camera with a larger diameter lens it would likely be too small. DV matte boxes are built for a dv camera's small diameter lens. Filter size also comes into account. A 3x3 filter will not work on most broadcast lenses because they will not cover the entire field of view.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


  • 0

#7 drew_town

drew_town
  • Sustaining Members
  • 383 posts
  • Camera Operator
  • Southeast US

Posted 09 June 2005 - 08:59 PM

My guess would be that most wide angle lenses will work okay considering this is the "wide angle matte box"

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think so too. But be sure to check on a number of things before you buy your matte box. How many stages are there (how many filters it will hold), is that number expandable, how many of the filter holders rotate, what are the other accessories like french flags, side flags, etc.
  • 0

#8 MattC

MattC
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 27 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 01 August 2005 - 12:17 PM

I have the Vocas 350 and love it.

Matt
  • 0

#9 Peter J DeCrescenzo

Peter J DeCrescenzo
  • Sustaining Members
  • 620 posts
  • Camera Operator
  • Portland, OR, USA www.peterdv.com Blog: http://herefortheweather.wordpress.com/

Posted 03 August 2005 - 11:12 AM

Just a heads-up: In the version of the "DV Mattebox" Century was selling a couple of years ago, the 2 filter stages only rotated together, not independently. However, I don't know if their current models work differently. For example, independently rotating filter stages allow adjusting a polarizer separately from a graduated ND.

All the best,

- Peter DeCrescenzo
  • 0


The Slider

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Abel Cine

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Willys Widgets

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

CineLab

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Aerial Filmworks

Metropolis Post

Opal

FJS International, LLC

Wooden Camera

Tai Audio

Glidecam

Rig Wheels Passport

CineTape

Visual Products

Technodolly

Paralinx LLC

Aerial Filmworks

Wooden Camera

Glidecam

Abel Cine

rebotnix Technologies

Opal

Tai Audio

Visual Products

CineTape

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Metropolis Post

CineLab

Rig Wheels Passport

Paralinx LLC

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

FJS International, LLC

The Slider

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Willys Widgets

Ritter Battery

Technodolly