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What lens or filter for this look?

lens filter vintage tv

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#1 Matt Rozier

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 10:27 AM

I'm due to be flying out to shoot a music vid in the next few weeks on the Arri Alexa Mini - I thought I'd pick the community brain to see if anyone has any great suggestions for lens choices to achieve the following kind of look....

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=7gtdpnKbT10

 

We've had to rule out the option of shooting VHS/film/TV cameras etc.  So I've got to get as close as I can using the right sort of lens and filters (plus there'll be haze too which'll help) - we'll be hiring in LA, so if anyone suggest a particular vintage lens that's hard to get hold of then it'd be great to know if you know of a local rental house that may stock it?  The main things we're looking to achieve are 

 

- As close to the look as possible using lens/filters/haze/grade

- The ability to zoom mid shot, all adding to that retro effect, so ideally something with a large zoom range and ideally parfocal.  

 

At the moment I'm thinking an Angenieux 24-290 purely because of the range - I know she's a beast but I'll be on sticks the whole time. Plus something like a Glimmerglass 1/2 or 1 or possibly even a Hollywood Star filter to really make those light sources pop.  

 

I've not used nets before, so I'm a bit hesitant to experiment too much on the job so ideally glass suggestion if possible :-) 

 

Are there any watchouts I should be aware of?  I've learnt a huge amount from you guys so it'd be really great to get the forums advice and ideas :-) 

 

Huge thanks in advance, Matt. 

 

 

 


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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 10:43 AM

Isn't this video just two years old?  So why are you thinking of vintage lenses?

 

Looks like a very light net on the back of the zoom to me.

 

Any filters you test, you should check to see how they look at the long end of the zoom when lights are in the shot.

 

Use extremely light haze if you are planning on zooming from wide to 290mm...


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#3 Matt Rozier

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 10:59 AM

Hi David ! (you're an absolute legend!) 

 

Thanks for your reply - yep you're right, that example is a very recent video - it was just sent to me as something that the director liked the look of. 

 

I've not used nets before, but perhaps it's something I should explore more - do you think something like Glimmerglass could get me close? or is netting really the only way? My main concern is inconsistency in the tension of the net giving me looks which don't cut easily - or am I worrying about that for no reason?

 

I'll definitely test the filters on the long and short end - thanks for the heads up - duly noted :-) 

 

And huge thanks again for the advice on the haze. 

 

Do you think I'm on the right track with the 24-290 or would you suggest something else?  On the vintage thing, the concept originally came from 70s/80s videos like this...

 

So originally we were talking about shooting on VHS or something to imitate the look.  That's now fallen by the way-side due to other restrictions.  I was thinking there could be a vintage zoom that I'm not aware of that'd work well - just to take the edge of the sharpness/contrast and to give me various lens imperfections etc. which could be useful.  But I'm thinking at the moment that the 24-290 gives me a range I may need for those big zooms, and we'll perhaps use filtering/lighting/grade/production design to get us closer to those examples.  Tricky.  


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#4 Mark Kenfield

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 11:01 AM

Does the Mini have the S16mm crop mode that Arri brought to the Amira for people who want to use S16mm lenses? If so, I'd perhaps look into that, and get yourself a S16mm superzoom. It'll give you that deeper 2/3"/video depth of field, and less overall detail.

 

Then, like David suggested, some diffusion filters or a net behind the lens, and a healthy dose of haze.

 

Then you'll have to stretch and destroy the image in the grade to get your highlights as nasty as those ones are.

 

Is there a reason you can't source an old Varicam, F900 or F23 from a rental house? It'll save you a fortune and get you much closer to that look from the outset.


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#5 Matt Rozier

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 11:15 AM

Thanks Mark !

 

Good call on the s16 mode - any particular s16 superzoom you'd recommend?  I think they're pretty set on shooting on the Alexa mini - lots of complicated reasons, it's being used double duty for another back to back shoot etc. plus this video has two very different looks - but we've a few days of prep before the shoot (I'm flying in from the UK) so perhaps I can ask a rental house if they'd mind us shooting a couple of tests at their base and we could take it from there. Thanks for those suggestions Mark - really appreciate your reply! :-) 

 

Matt 


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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 11:32 AM

If you want more of an interlaced-scan look, I'd consider shooting with the shutter at 270 or 360 degrees, which gives you a smeary motion that feels very electronic.

 

The big Optimo makes sense, unless you want to go with an older 25-250.


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#7 Mark Kenfield

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Posted 03 August 2016 - 11:46 AM

Thanks Mark !

 

Good call on the s16 mode - any particular s16 superzoom you'd recommend?  I think they're pretty set on shooting on the Alexa mini - lots of complicated reasons, it's being used double duty for another back to back shoot etc. plus this video has two very different looks - but we've a few days of prep before the shoot (I'm flying in from the UK) so perhaps I can ask a rental house if they'd mind us shooting a couple of tests at their base and we could take it from there. Thanks for those suggestions Mark - really appreciate your reply! :-) 

 

Matt 

 

 

I haven't used all that many of them (I've mostly shot with primes for S16mm format work). So it would pay to get some feedback from others, but I've had good experiences with the Zeiss 11-110 T/2.2 and the Canon 11.5-138 T/2.5. The Zeiss breathes quite heavily - but that probably works in your favour for this particular shoot.


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