October 24, 2014, 03:27:33 AM

Author Topic: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?  (Read 19090 times)

filmrebel

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« on: September 08, 2012, 12:15:04 PM »
If you could choose three lenses for filming on Canon DSLR, what would they be and why? I've been looking at the Canon 28mm 1.8, 50mm 1.4, and 85mm 1.8, since they cover all the range (on a full-frame, anyway). Thanks!

canon rumors FORUM

The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« on: September 08, 2012, 12:15:04 PM »

paul13walnut5

  • Guest
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2012, 01:14:52 PM »
If you are specifically doing video then a trio of Samyangs may actually be better.. 

The 24 f1.4, 35 f1.4 & 85 f1.4

These lenses have mechanical iris rings and can be declicked for smooth on the fly aperture adjustment, they all have nice wide long throw focus rings, and are all excellent performers.

The more aperture the better for video, as you generally have a fixed shutter speed and for shot matching will want to keep ISO as even as possible between shots.

ND's can stop down a lens when usable aperture runs out, they can't add more in at the wide end.  You will find f1.4 softer and trickier to shoot at, but it makes a big difference having it available.

If you want to stick on brand, I am personally not a fan of the 28mm f1.8, I think its a big expensive soft lens.  Especially at the edges, which could be more fatal for video than for stills.

Doubtless others will have their own opinions but thats mine.

You'll note that I actually don't own any of these lenses.. I've went down the fast zoom route, which better suits my type of work.

filmrebel

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2012, 01:21:57 PM »
Wow, I would have never thought of using Samyung, but you bring up some good points. For a 50mm, would you recommend the Canon 50mm 1.4? I'm definitely thinking of using the Samyung, it's received some very good reviews. Thanks!

filmrebel

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #3 on: September 08, 2012, 01:25:15 PM »
Sorry, not Samyung, it's Samyang.

paul13walnut5

  • Guest
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2012, 01:33:30 PM »
I've got the 50mm f1.8.  I've went through about four in the time I've been using the EOS system, my mk1 lost infinity focus, dropped my first mkII and turned it into a tiltshift.  My Dad stole my second mk2, and I'm on my third mk2.

I often considered the f1.4, I would like the smoother iris and the better build etc.

It's not a great lens for video work as the focus ring is tiny and quite loose with a short throw, the f1.4 addresses all of these problems, but it's not any better at equivalent apertures.

Look also at the Sigma 50mm f1.4, its a much more recent design, and unusually for sigma, its actually more expensive than the canon one, some folk rave about it but I gather it suffers from sample variance.

However if you are really buying for video, the build and layout of a manual lens may even steer me towards a zeiss, IF 50mm is a must have.

cliffwang

  • Canon 7D MK II
  • *****
  • Posts: 491
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2012, 02:44:28 PM »
I have Samyung 35mm F/1.4.  The IQ is good.  However, I haven't used it for a while because it doesn't have AF.  For film, MF actually is just fine.  A friend told me, he always disable AF when he take video.
Canon 5D3 | Samyang 14mm F/2.8 | Sigma 50mm F/1.4 | Tamron 24-70mm F/2.8 VC | Canon 70-200mm F/2.8 IS MK2 | Canon 100mm f/2.8 Macro L | Canon Closed-up 500D | 430EX | Kenko 2x Teleplus Pro 300 | Manfrotto Tripod

Axilrod

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1376
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2012, 03:03:05 PM »
Mf is standard for video so unless you're planning on shooting alot of stills I agree with Paulie, go with the Samyangs.  I also agree that the canon 28 1.8 isn't that great a lens.  I'd always recommend Zeiss but if you're on a budget you can't go wrong with the Samyangs.  35, 50 and 85 is a good start but you may want something a bit wider as well.
5DIII/5DII/Bunch of L's and ZE's, currently rearranging.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2012, 03:03:05 PM »

unadog

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 82
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2012, 03:26:51 PM »
I know this is contrary to what most will tell you, but I love my Canon 24-70 2.8 L for video, and for almost all of my work.

I know it doesn't have mechanical aperature control, but I have done fine with the electronic controls.

I have a large stock of prime lenses, but tehy never get used. I have the Canon 24 2.8, 40 2.8 STM, 50 1.8, 90 TS-E (tilt shift.) I just sold my Canon 85 1.2 and the 45 TS-E.  I also have the Zeiss 28 2.8 and 35 2.0 ZE.

Yet teh only lenses that I really use are my 24-70, and the 70-200 when I need more reach.  I am thinking of selling all of teh rest of my lenses, with two exceptions.

I have the Canon T4i with video auto focus. I bought the 40 mm STM and 18-135 IS STM lenses to use on teh T4i for video. They feature silint focus mechanisms, and they also focus in a more pleasing manner for video.  I plan on keeping those two lenses.

If you do decide to go for manual lenses, the Zeiss are a decent choice.  I also really like the focus on the TS-E lenses. They have a very long throw, and you can use the tilt for creative control of depth of filed, either to increase or decrease depth of field. The shift function is also very useful to avoid converging lines in architectural shots, etc.

They area bit slow at 3.5 or abouts.  But the older TS-E (24, 45, 90) cost about $875 used, which is about the cost of ther Zeiss used.

Good luck!
Michael

 

dirtcastle

  • Canon 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 391
    • View Profile
    • Eric Nord Flickr Page
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2012, 04:03:29 PM »
What are people's experiences using the 24-105mm f/4 L IS for video?

How important is IS/VR for video?

How important is an aperture ring?

How important is the "play" of a focus ring?

DB

  • Guest
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #9 on: September 08, 2012, 07:32:29 PM »
I use my 24-70mm f/2.8L for video all of the time as you're not advised to shoot film below f2.8 -> too soft and OOF [main reason: L lens colour is near perfect and so requires no correction in post]

You do not need IS for video as most video is not shot handheld, and when it is, it is usually done using a rig or glidecam. Best to keep camera on a fluid head mono/tripod. Plus IS drains the batteries and makes a humming sound.

Play on the focus ring should not matter too much, especially as you normally shoot MF using ViveView to get your composition in focus. Thereafter just shoot. Focus pulling is not used by Pro's other than to start or end a scene and they use special equipment to do this and they rehearse it first a couple of times.

An aperture ring is only really important if you're using an old or manual only lens, especially if it has been rendered  declicked or smooth by a specialist (e.g. see TheLensDoctor on eBay - they do this to a lot of old but good glass, so that filmmakers can manually adjust the aperture dynamically and not in discrete steps. This allows a greater degree in flexibility with respect to available light (as both your ISO + Shutter Speed will be predetermined and manually set prior to recording).
« Last Edit: September 08, 2012, 07:35:26 PM by DB »

marekjoz

  • 1D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 945
    • View Profile
    • marekjoz @flickr
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #10 on: September 08, 2012, 08:22:13 PM »
Did you try these: CN-E24mm T1.5 L FCN-E50mm T1.3 L F, CN-E85mm T1.3 L F ?

I haven't tried them, but from the notes they seem to be fair good for filmmaking...
They say: "Perfect on the EOS C300, these lenses are also compatible with all Canon EOS DSLRs.", so it seems legit.

:D :D :D
« Last Edit: September 08, 2012, 08:31:54 PM by marekjoz »
flickr | youtube | 5D2, 50 F/1.4, 24-105 F/4 L IS, 300 F/4 L IS, x1.4 II

filmrebel

  • Power Shot G7X
  • **
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #11 on: September 08, 2012, 08:34:50 PM »
Did you try these: CN-E24mm T1.5 L FCN-E50mm T1.3 L F, CN-E85mm T1.3 L F ?

I haven't tried them, but from the notes they seem to be fair good for filmmaking...
They say: "Perfect on the EOS C300, these lenses are also compatible with all Canon EOS DSLRs.", so it seems legit.

:D :D :D

Yeah, too bad they're so expensive. I would get them in a heartbeat if they weren't though.

rmblack

  • PowerShot G1 X II
  • ***
  • Posts: 50
    • View Profile
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2012, 09:53:39 PM »
I've read that there are new samyang lenses coming out specifically for video...I'll find ya a link

Quote
SAMYANG T1.5 35mm AS UMC
SAMYANG T1.5 24mm ED AS IF UMC
SAMYANG T3.1 14mm ED AS IF UMC

Cracow, 9th August 2012 – Samyang Optics gladly informs, that Samyang Family has been enlarged by three new lenses dedicated for digital cinema purpose.

Lenses with focal 35mm, 24 mm and 14mm will be available on sales in sequence next week, at the end of August and in September.

The construction of the new lenses has been based on previous types dedicated for photography. Their main feature are racks co-operating with follow – focus system, and a ring rotated continously. Thanks to these alterations it is possible to precisely and silently operate focus and depth of field. Another facility is putting aperture and focus scale parallel to the axis of the lens and aperture marked with number of transmission T. Lenses are compatible with Nikon and Canon cameras.

Prices will be announced soon.

http://www.photographyblog.com/news/samyang_14mm_24mm_35mm_vdslr_cine_lenses/

I use the older 28-70mm 2.8L for filming, as well as an 80-200mm 2.8L.   I also own the 50mm 1.4 and 100mm 2.8 macro, but haven't used these as much.  The primes may render better colors and detail (the 100 more so than the 50), but having the flexibility of a zoom is critical for framing your shots. 

Remember, that's my experience filming mostly freerunning and parkour, which is spontaneous, high paced, and not necessarily a great subject to film with a dslr  ::)   

What I never understand is why OP would ask for "the best lenses for filming" and expect a worthwhile response.  Get specific, man!
Canon 5D mkII - 80-200 2.8L (Magic Drainpipe) - 28-70 2.8L USM - 100mm 2.8 USM Macro - 50mm 1.4 USM - 580exII - Pixel Knight triggers - f-stop Loka - Feisol 3441t + Markins Q3t

canon rumors FORUM

Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2012, 09:53:39 PM »

paul13walnut5

  • Guest
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #13 on: September 08, 2012, 09:58:26 PM »
@dirtcastle

Quote
What are people's experiences using the 24-105mm f/4 L IS for video?

How important is IS/VR for video?

How important is an aperture ring?

How important is the "play" of a focus ring?

A) Never used it.  Not an appropriate lens for my camera with it's crop.  Generally f4 is a bit low for video in low light/

B) Not really.  You'll be shooting at 1/50th.  Support is more important as you'll be holding the camera for longer takes otherwise.  Think monopod, think counterbalanced tripod.

C) Aperture ring isn't massively important, it's just nice, makes the DSLR behave more like an ENG camera where the responses are tactile rather than electronic.  Video is on the fly, so smooth aperture rings let you tweak exposure almost invisibly as far as the end viewer is concerned.

D) Play is the wrong term, i think you mean 'throw', more throw gives you more modulation, more precision.

daveheinzel

  • PowerShot G1 X II
  • ***
  • Posts: 48
    • View Profile
    • daveheinzel.com
Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2012, 10:56:36 PM »
My favorite three that I own and use are:

1) Canon 70-200mm 2.8 IS ii. The IS on this lens is fantastic for handheld video, and the image quality is so consistently amazing. Love this lens for almost any type of work.

2) Zeiss 50mm 1.4 ZE. It's the cheapest Zeiss you'll find, and it's great for video. Image quality is outstanding - very sharp when focused. And the barrel rotates so much for focus, giving you great control for follow focus. And it has hard stops at the end of each focal range. It's a pain for still photography unless you stop down quite a bit.

3) Canon 17-40mm 4.0. This was my first L lens, and I'd probably like the 16-35 better because of the larger aperture, but I have really been happy with this lens.

I use a 7D and 60D for DSLR video work. Another lens I have and use for video is the 10-22. It's crazy wide at 10, and handheld video has a very seasick kind of feeling. But in some situations it comes in handy.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: The Three Best Lenses for Filmmaking?
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2012, 10:56:36 PM »