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using 35mm spherical lenses on S-16


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#1 Tomas Koolhaas

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Posted 24 September 2005 - 01:08 AM

Hello,
A friend of mine is planning to shoot super-16 using 35mm Cooke S4 primes, he spoke to someone at clairmont who told him, to his surprise, that using 35mm lenses on S-16 may actually decrease the sharpness/ or not be as sharp as a good super-16mm lense. Does anyone know if this is true (I would say not, but haven't actually worked with that set-up) has anyone used a similar set-up and know the truth. I know someone who used old 35mm Mitchell lenses (which were comparatively soft) converted to PL mount on an XTR for blow-up to 35mm and his end product looked sharp enough on the big-screen and DVD, so I would have thought it would be fine, but it is surprising for someone at clairmont to say something that seems incorrect.
Any experiences and thoughts are appreciated.
Cheers.
Tomas.

Edited by Tomas Haas, 24 September 2005 - 01:09 AM.

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#2 Stephen Williams

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Posted 24 September 2005 - 03:52 AM

Hello,
A friend of mine is planning to shoot super-16 using 35mm Cooke S4 primes, he spoke to someone at clairmont who told him, to his surprise, that using 35mm lenses on S-16 may actually decrease the sharpness/ or not be as sharp as a good super-16mm lense. Does anyone know if this is true (I would say not, but haven't actually worked with that set-up) has anyone used a similar set-up and know the truth. I know someone who used old 35mm Mitchell lenses (which were comparatively soft) converted to PL mount on an XTR for blow-up to 35mm and his end product looked sharp enough on the big-screen and DVD, so I would have thought it would be fine, but it is surprising for someone at clairmont to say something that seems incorrect.
Any experiences and thoughts are appreciated.
Cheers.
Tomas.

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Hi,

You need to test and see for yourself on a big screen.

The results from the S4's will be very acceptable on Super 16. However they are not the sharpest lenses on the planet. The 9.5mm + 12mm were designed for super 16.

Mitchell cameras were often sold with Super Balitar lenses. The Cooke S4's are far sharper than those.

Lens choice depends on the script.

Stephen
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#3 Tomas Koolhaas

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Posted 24 September 2005 - 08:18 PM

Hi,

You need to test and see for yourself on a big screen.

The results from the S4's will be very acceptable on Super 16. However they are not the sharpest lenses on the planet. The 9.5mm + 12mm were designed for super 16.

Mitchell cameras were often sold with Super Balitar lenses. The Cooke S4's are far sharper than those.

Lens choice depends on the script.

Stephen

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Thanks for the reply Stephen,
I figured as much, probably what the guy at clairmont meant was: S4's aren't the sharpest lense in the world and using some other super16mm lense (Zeiss for example) instead of 35mm S4's could give you a sharper image.
But as you said my friend wants to use Cookes for their look, so sharpness isn't always the prime concern for lense choice.
Cheers.
Tomas.
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#4 Dimitrios Koukas

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Posted 25 September 2005 - 03:56 AM

Thanks for the reply Stephen,
I figured as much,  probably what the guy at clairmont meant was: S4's aren't the sharpest lense in the world and using some other super16mm lense (Zeiss for example) instead of 35mm S4's could give you a sharper image.
But as you said my friend wants to use Cookes for their look, so sharpness isn't always the prime concern for lense choice.
Cheers.
Tomas.

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35mm lenses for S16 mm? No problem at all.
I have many times had to go on a PL mount package for 35 mm to use it for 16 just because of warehouse availability reasons.
Dimitrios Koukas
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#5 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 11:44 AM

The guys at Clairmont may have a point. Here's what I mean: Years ago I bought a Toyo 8x10 still-film view camera with a fantastic Nikkor 360mm lens (roughly speaking, this is a standard-to-slightly-long focal length for the 8x10 film format). Now I was big time! Those wimpy little 4x5 cameras were for amateurs. On my first job, I shot the same subject (a motorcycle on a stage) with the 8x10 and also my 4x5 camera with a standard Schneider 210mm Super Angulon. And the 4x5 film was far sharper!

I spoke to a couple of old-timers who said the reason was that the lens performance specs are typically realxed as the format gets larger (in your case, 35mm film being larger than 16mm) because the manufacturers realize that the amount of end-use enlargement typically decreases as the film size gets bigger. They also said that , at least in still film, the 35mm lenses are the ones that are held to the highest standards because ALL 35mm film is enlarged for final use in printing. 8x10, on the other hand, often has to be reduced to fit the printed page in a magazine.

And there may be another reason: money. After all, still photography was moving away from "archaic" formats like 8x10 (okay, I still use mine, but that's beside the point) to medium and small formats like 120 and 35mm. That's where the manufacturers were spending the R&D money on lens development. Why develop an 8x10 lens that can resolve 1000 lines per mm when you're only going to sell, like five of them?
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#6 Dimitrios Koukas

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 01:38 PM

They also said that , at least in still film, the 35mm lenses are the ones that are held to the highest standards because ALL 35mm film is enlarged for final use in printing. 8x10, on the other hand, often has to be reduced to fit the printed page in a magazine.

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I thought large formats main reason of excistance was huge magnifyings for billboards.
Dimitrios Koukas
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#7 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 02:04 PM

We're getting a little off topic, but yes. . .8x10 still film used to be (and sometimes is) the prefered format for billboard-size ads. But that's not how it originated. Actually, back in the days before enlargers, if you wanted an 8x10 print, you simply shot with an 8x10 camera sandwiched the negative between a heavy piece of optical glass and a piece of print paper (contact-printing) shot some light through it and developed the paper. If you wanted a 5x7, well, same thing, just start with a 5x7. Because the film quality was so poor at that time, 35mm was considered a miniature format, not useful for much other that some specialized applications. That all changed with better films and the advent of photo enlargers.

I may be wrong about this, but I believe the 35mm still camera format was originally developed by someone at Leica primarily as a way to test movie set lighting--sort of a Polaroid, if you will. They built this miniature camera to accept the movie film being used on the set: the DP would expose a few frames and have it developed to see what the lighting looked like on the actual film that would run through the motion picture camera.
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Aerial Filmworks

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Rig Wheels Passport

rebotnix Technologies

Ritter Battery

Willys Widgets

The Slider