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Som Berthiot Pan Cinor Lens


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#1 John Carty

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Posted 06 September 2017 - 01:34 PM

I was just curious to know what a Som Berthiot Pan Cinor  C-Mount lens is like, are they a good lens for a Bolex 16mm camera? What problems do they have if any? will their be any restrictions in the focusing? Is there certain models better than others? Any info on these lens would grateful.

 

John


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#2 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 06 September 2017 - 09:06 PM

Som Berthiot went down in history with the Pan Cinor as the first "modern" zoom lens for motion pictures in the early 50s, being fairly parfocal and relatively well corrected. They produced many different versions over about 20 years, ranging from 3x to 10x zooms, mainly for 8mm and 16mm formats. Their zooms used a simple optical compensating mechanism with 2 elements moving together on either side of a fixed central element, which was soon superceded by separately moving variator and compensator elements in a zoom mechanism developed by Angenieux (which is still used in zoom lenses today). As such, the image quality of Pan Cinors is a far cry from modern zooms. The coatings are dated, and contrast is generally low.

 

I've come across quite a few with fungus, so that's something to watch for.

 

Having said that, the compact little f/3.8 17-85 is decent, and about as small as a zoom of this range can get, handy for carrying around on a reflex Bolex. I think it even covers S16. Pan Cinors tend to be cheaper than similar range Angenieuxs or Vario-Switars.


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#3 John Carty

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 12:14 AM

Thanks for the great info, I have seen the 17-85mm lens. Is it better to use the view finder that comes with that lens, or just use the Bolex view finder,what would be the advantages vs disadvantages using the view finder on the Pan or the Bolex

 

Thanks


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#4 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 02:08 AM

I was talking about the Compact 85 that doesn't have it's own viewfinder.

 

Lenses with their own viewfinders lose light to them, and have additional optics that only help to degrade the image. Useful for a non-reflex Bolex but not a reflex one.

 

If you only have a dogleg option on a reflex Bolex I'd use whichever viewfinder had the clearest image.


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#5 John Carty

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 11:13 AM

Good to know. Thanks Dom


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