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Cinema Style Lenses

I am back on land and ready to tear it up.  The January newsletter has been a big success and I thank you all for your comments and suggestions.  This is a collaborative effort and we value your input.

I have been getting many comments from people on what is the value of cinema style lenses compared to still lenses.  So, this is part one of a two part blog. First we delve into cinema style lenses and what makes them useful. Part II focuses on still lenses and the variety of options. The choice ultimately comes down to the look that you want to achieve as an artist and your budget.  When you read a script you have to let the story speak to you and have your lighting and lens choice be character driven.

For example, on “Terminator: Salvation,” what would a world dominated by machines look like?  Well, I thought about what machines are made of: steel, iron, titanium; these materials all have the color silver in them.  What would a world filled with silver look and feel like?  It would be pretty black and white.  McG and I did not want to make a black and white movie. With a movie that had silver threaded through its visual language, we then added color in their faces and threw in a little warmth in the Resistance to make it visually interesting.  My Elite Team and I set out on a mission to deliver a new look for a post-apocalyptic world that no one had seen before. We used the story and the Terminators characters to drive the look and feel of Skynet proper.  It was cold, filled with contrast, uninviting, dark, edgy, and depressing. The only warm color in Skynet was fire for the fear factor and the color red because that was a franchise established color.

T4 Skynet - Click for larger image

T4 Skynet – Click for larger image
T4 Skynet - Click for larger image

T4 Skynet – Click for larger image

In contrast, the Resistance bunker and personnel had color with warm skin tones to give it life.  I wanted to use greens and gold’s and warm sunlight to show that our characters were trying to survive in this world of machines where they were not a machine.

The exterior landscapes had little life or hope, so we let our silver color bleed into this world.

These are the colors we chose to use in painting our canvas, and they were driven by the story. I turned to the Panavision Primo Primes for their resolution, contrast range and crisp feel.

T4 Resistance - Click for larger image

T4 Resistance – Click for larger image

T4 Resistance - Click for larger image

T4 Resistance – Click for larger image

T4 Post Apocalyptic Landscape - Click for larger image

T4 Post Apocalyptic Landscape – Click for larger image

T4 Post Apocalyptic Landscape - Click for larger image

T4 Post Apocalyptic Landscape – Click for larger image

T4 Post Apocolytic Landscape - Click for larger image

T4 Post Apocalyptic Landscape – Click for larger image

When I was asked to lens “ We are Marshall” McG and I had gone through a variety of different looks for a movie in the early seventies.  They had been done before and we wanted something unique.  There were a slew of period 1970’s movies that had hit the theaters and we were feeling inspired to make it different.  The story was such an amazing rise from the ashes story.  The characters in the film had lost so much and their town had suffered emotionally and financially for decades.  I walked around the town scouting locations and this event literally touched every single person in some way.  It was truly profound.  I would be in an elevator in Kansas City and some one would notice my Marshall University hat that I was wearing and they would stop me and say.  “You know I was one of the first firefighters on the scene.  The plane crash was so intense and hot that we could not get near it for hours. “ It was a monumental event that effected generations.  How do you translate that into a lens choice or a photographic style?  Well, I went back to still photography and to the Kodachrome images of the late 1960’s for my inspiration. The 70′s looks in cinema that had been done recently had been de-staurated and flat. I felt that this would be incredibly depressing and this story was not about the tragedy; it was about the community’s rebirth.  So what better format than the most beautiful film stock that has ever graced our printers.  KODACHROME!!

We Are Marshall - Click for larger image

We Are Marshall – Click for larger image

We Are Marshall - Click for larger image

We Are Marshall – Click for larger image

We Are Marshall - Click for larger image

We Are Marshall – Click for larger image

Once McG and I strategized, I went out to search for period glass for the image capture.  I settled on 1968 Zeiss Panavision Ultra Primes.  There were plenty of beautiful still lenses that had been converted by many manufacturers to work on our Panavision cameras but none of them were ready to be tested in a movie making environment or one that required specific focus capabilities.  The Ultra primes had been making movies since the 1960’s.  The glass had less contrast which was a big advantage. Kodachrome has a very colorful and stark look but it also has this very beautiful chalky effect in the blacks.  So in the coloring process, I coined the phrase “chalk and drop,” where we took the lower contrast 1960’s glass and pushed the mid tones to the extreme, then brought the blacks way down   This created a halo in the transition area from light to dark. Then with a little added saturation, period art direction and a colorful costume palette, it breathed eternal life into this tragic but uplifting story.  So, it is really up to you as an artist to let the story and the characters speak to you.

We Are Marshall - Click for larger image

We Are Marshall – Click for larger image

We Are Marshall - Click here for larger image

We Are Marshall – Click  for larger image

Transitioning from film to HD has required a whole new level of creativity. One big weakness in the 5D platform is the 8 BIT compressed color space.  How do you deal with that?  Well, I use it to my advantage by shooting with the sharpest lenses possible.  It gives you more range in the color grading process.  The minute something was a little soft, the details in different shades of color went away first.  The Elite Team and I have done multiple tests and found the Primo Prime resolution is far superior to every still lens out there.  They are all hand made Leica glass with state of the art coating.  Each lens varies from $18,000.00 to $40,000.00 in the prime lens department.  Not $200.00 up $3,500.00.  The Primos deliver about 3 more stops of latitude.  Because of the lens size it captures more light, so seeing into the shadows was increased by about 1.5 stops.  Then with the coating and design of the lens, it holds more detail in the highlights, about 1.5 stops.

Unfortunately, Panavision is currently in a lawsuit against Canon pertaining to Canon copyright infringement of their CMOS Sensor http://image-sensors-world.blogspot.com/2009/10/panavision-sues-omnivision-aptina.html. Until this gets resolved, the Panavision lenses will not be available for rental. Everyone is now on the bandwagon to give you PL mount lenses. So the market is wide open for engineers to take apart the Canon 5D and 7D cameras and carve it out so that the PL mounted rear element does not hit the Canon mirror.  This will then enable you to use the Cooke S4 Primes, Arri Ultra Primes, and or the Zeiss Master Primes.  Clairmont Camera has started to tear them apart and retool the mount. Illya Freidman at http://www.hotrodcameras.com/ has done a 7D that I saw at Sundance for around $4,000.00 and it looked sweet.  He will convert your 5D if you provide it.

Just be aware that if you interfere with the Canon body in any way, it voids all warranties. I know in my heart that at least one lens manufacturer will see the light and build a cinema style lens with a Canon mount in the near future.

Author: Shane

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76 Comments

  1. Thanks for the lens info Shane. Love the visuals in Terminator Salvation! If you can’t shoot with the Panavision lenses, what you guys currently using?

    Post a Reply
    • Jon Carr, I am currently using the Zeiss ZE primes.

      Post a Reply
  2. Shane, did you get a chance to try Leica still lenses in your January testing? I’m curious to see if they give a similar increase in latitude as the Primo Primes…

    Post a Reply
    • Paul Shin, yes we did and they were very close. I am currently trying to build a set. Same color and contrast. Highlights went a little quicker and the under exposed areas were not as clean, but overall impressive.

      Post a Reply
  3. Hello Shane,

    I noticed the Zeiss ZE primes tend to be a bit more expensive than the ZF versions, and they do not have the aperture ring (not that it really matters now that the DSLRs have full manual control).

    Have you guys tested both versions and if so, is there any difference in optical quality?

    Did you decide on the ZEs because you don’t have to use the ZFs with adapters like the Novoflex?

    Post a Reply
    • Cedric Yu, we went with the ZE because the lens talks to the camera and you can use the wheel on the back to adjust your exposures more easily. The ZE glass seems to be slightly sharper and I like the 28mm, which does not come in the ZF kit. Also the Novoflex and the Photodiox mount we were having trouble with focus at infinity, and we had to remark the lenses. The ZE’s are cleaner all the way around.

      Post a Reply
  4. Thanks, Shane.
    I’ve understood that cinema glass is usually a price shocker to stills shooters, but has the features needed like long focus throws (for slow focus pulls), accurate focus marks, minimal breathing (change in focal length with focus change) and ramping (exposure shift witha zoom). Still images do not care as much about ramping and breathing: the image stands alone – but in motion the variations can be perceptible.
    This is all before the serious considerations you mentioned like low vs high contrast glass for the look. As someone picking up the skills for motion from a stills background, am I correct in my assumptions?

    Post a Reply
    • Kevin Steele, yes you are correct. As a still shooter you short focus range is excellent for you to grab that awesome moment and as a single shooter you are able to look at your focus on the top of the lens. But that does not work for your focus puller, he cannot see the marks. So you need to use a remote follow focus and remark all of your still lenses on the side so that he can see his marks. The short focus range also is a killer for a focus puller, they cannot finesse. The same goes for the breathing of the lens. If you are taking a still you do not see that. It is a still image. But when you now make that image move and you rack focus you will see that the lens zooms in and out with your change in focus.

      Post a Reply
  5. Shane,

    Fantastic entry… And great to know about hotrodcameras.com Some really killer stuff going on there. Thanks for doing what you do!

    - B

    Post a Reply
  6. Hi Shane,
    Everytime I read your letters, I am inspired. Love it that you shot Marshal on Kodachrome.
    I have been trying to find a zoom that I can do snap zoom moves with, being inspired by Barry Ackroyd’s work in Hurt Locker. He was using Canon super 16 cinema zooms. For the DSLRs, I can tell what doesn’t work, the Canon still zooms. Any thoughts on this? I have a feeling I know the answer, but maybe the the master has an answer.
    Peace,
    David

    Post a Reply
    • david Harry Stewart, thank you so much for your kind words. Just to clarify I shot Marshall on Kodak vision 35mm film stock 5245, 5219, 5206. Then I matched the Kodachrome look in the Post color correction process, with the old style lenses. I have not found a good zoom. I only used the Primos, but now I am on the look out for something that works. I think the 70-200mm is Canons best Zoom and on the 5D that correlates to a 50mm to a 135mm zoom, which is good for snap zoom. The other one is the 24-70mm that is a 16mm to a 50mm. Not a bad range. I would rig a focus and zoom motor up on the lens and I think you will find that they do quite well. All the handheld lightweight zooms that Panavision has are adapted Canon Zooms. But you absolutley need a wireless focus and zoom motor, the camera will jerk to the left or right and also loose level when you try to zoom in. Rig your zoom onto your handle on your hand held rig and then you can operate and zoom at the same time and not be grabbing the lens.

      Post a Reply
  7. nice article Shane, let’s hope Canon launch some kind of raw format like arri/red in the next generation dslr’s (I presume two generations from now its a more realistic guess)

    recently I test five 50mm in studio (canon 1.2/canon 1.4/sigma 1.4/nikon 1.4/zeiss 1.4) and by far, the zeiss prime have more dynamic range and cinematic “mood” giving the best latitude and neutral colors to grade in post, but in sharpness I found the 50mm 1.2 slighty superior below f/2.8

    hey Shane, one question related post-production: what are the DP role in grading process? there are an active colaboration scene-to-scene or a general “color bible” scenario and freedom for the colorist?

    thx for your blog, very inspiring for young film students like me.

    Post a Reply
    • Alvaro, I found the same exact thing the Zeiss give you so much more lattitude. I am very involved in the Post color grading process. Terminator was 3 weeks with Stefan Sonnefeld over at Company 3. Swing vote was 2 weeks at Laser Pacific and colorist Dave Cole, Semi-pro was 3 weeks at Efilm, etc. I get into the color correction bay at around 7am and finish around 6pm. I finesse every frame. The process usually goes like this. I have a meeting with the colorist, we decide on the overall look of the film. He then works on the film for a week without me, taking my overall notes and balancing the film out. Then I come in for the 2 or 3 weeks of color correction.

      Post a Reply
  8. Hi Shane,

    In your Zeiss set, are you using either of the Makro-Planar f2 lenses? Have you used them side by side. From what I have seen they have a very cinematic feel to them and are quite different to their Planar f1.4 equivalents. Wondered if you had any thoughts on them.

    Cheers,
    Ross

    Post a Reply
    • Ross, I love the Makro-Planar f2 lenses. Those are the ones we have in our kits. My only thought on Zeiss in general is that they are cold and they our contrasty, so I had to develop a picture style that swung them more towards the Primos, buy decreasing the contrast and swinging the WB shift to warm the image slightly.

      Post a Reply
  9. Thanks Shane!
    So from what I’ve gathered so far from these posts, in general:
    Panavision Primo Primes > Zeiss Makro-Planar > Zeiss Planar > Canon L

    Post a Reply
  10. A pleasure to read, as always.

    Lenses is my favourite subject :)

    For me, the camera’s usability and adaptability to lots of interesting lenses is very important, more important even than having full frame.

    Recently a strange thing happened. I dumped my Canon L lenses, and the 5D in fact. I went back to the Panasonic GH1 and the result is very cinematic with old Zeiss glass from the 1970′s. Sometimes a softer image is what you need. There is no doubt that a Panavision prime or a Zeiss Makro Planar is amazing – beautiful – brilliant. But – well, I can’t afford them :)

    I have created a film as part of a campaign to get artists involved in recognising Taiwan as the sovereign country it is. Here is the video (on the home page, large sized) http://www.filmfox.co.uk or on Vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/9176830

    Let me know your thought’s Shane. I’d be honoured if you saw it.

    Post a Reply
    • Andrew Reid, it would be my pleasure to view it. Whatever and wherever you find your creative inspiration on whatever format is what it is all about. Dream, create, and have fun!!!!

      Post a Reply
    • Andrew Reid, I just looked at your film, excellent composition. Beautifully shot. Keep up the great work.

      Post a Reply
    • ken glassing, yes indeed. I get a set next week to test, I cannot wait.

      Post a Reply
    • Peter, yes it is, I will be getting a set to test soon. I will give you some feedback.

      Post a Reply
    • Peter, we are trying to tag team here it looks like, Vincent puts out the cinema style lens announcement, and I present you with the possible tools to get them in focus. I know Richard from Zeiss is getting slammed with request but I will give you a full report once we take delivery of them in the DR.

      Post a Reply
  11. Hiya Shane,

    I’m starting out with the newly released Canon 550D.

    I can only afford one lens to start out with and will be adding to my kit over time.

    Do you have any recommendations as to the best all rounder (mainly for shooting short films)? I’m currently considering the Carl Zeiss Distagon T* 35mm f/2.0, Zeiss Makro-Planar T* 50mm f2.0 or Planar T* 50mm f/1.4 ZE Lens…

    Thanks for the excellent resource, and the information you and the elite team are providing to us all!

    Post a Reply
    • James McKissick, The Canon 550D, basically has a little smaller than a 35mm chip size, like the 7D. I would go with the 35mm Zeiss ZE, it is a great lens to start with. Thank you for all the kind words and comments. Keep creating!

      Post a Reply
  12. Shane -

    A comment and question regarding the Panavision lawsuit you mentioned.

    My question is: Can you elaborate on why this lawsuit is preventing panavision lens rentals, or what the larger context is? It seems like not being able to rent their lenses would be rather dire. Mind you that I’m not a cine photographer but just a curious still photog, so I have little perspective on that.

    My comment: In trying to google the answer for myself, I found a stupid SEO site stealing your content. You might want to shut that down! Here is the link:

    http://digicam-shop.info/panavision-cameras

    - David

    Post a Reply
    • David Hill, I have tried to understand Panavision reason to no avail. They are going through a huge shake up right now. Let’s see what happens when the dust settles.

      Post a Reply
  13. Hello Shane,

    I have a question? If you were going to do a shoot, say maybe a commerical,or
    short movie. And you were allowed to use ONLY two lens (mm).
    Which, length len’s would you choose,to do all your work.

    Thanks
    Robert

    Post a Reply
    • Robert Jureit, what camera 5D, 7D, 1D? If it is the 5D I would use a 50 and 100 macro Canon L series. 7D 25mm and 85mm Zeiss ZE. Canon 1D 28mm and 85mm Zeiss ZE.

      Post a Reply
  14. Hi Shane,

    I recently bought a Leica Elmarit R 35mm 2.8 based off of your recommendation and I really like it so far. I had a strange phenomenon the other day when I was test shooting against a sunset and the colors would become colder as I rack focused into infinity. The colors would especially warm up and bloom through trees when I would pull focus back which was also odd. Any explanation for this?

    Also, should I now stick to Leica lenses only, or is it okay to mix and match different brands?

    Thanks,

    Post a Reply
    • Micah, I think that could be some internal lens flaring that is causing that. But whatever it is, it is bizarre. I would have to look at the footage to see what you are seeing. I love the Leica and I am purchasing the new Leica Summarit-S series. What an impressive set of lenses. If you like what you are getting with the Leica’s and they speak to your art that you are creating then they are the right tool. Go with your heart and dream!

      Post a Reply
  15. Hi Shane,
    I was wondering if you have tested any of the Russian Lomo cinema lenses from the Konvas and Kinor cameras?
    Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge and experience.

    Post a Reply
    • Whit, I have not, but I would like to buy some. Do you have a line on any?

      Post a Reply
  16. Hi Shane, I bought a Konvas motion picture camera, that came with a set of Lomo’s from http://www.rafcamera.com. He used to be a big seller of these on ebay. I took a leap sending the money to Russia, but he always came through. He might be able to help. Also a guy named Steve Morton seems to be connected in this area. He has a website called http://www.cinemods.com. Thank you again for posting your experiences, it has helped me learn so much.

    Post a Reply
    • Whit, thank you so much for all the info. on the Lomo’s. I will give these guys a shout. You are welcome. Keep dreaming and creating.

      Post a Reply
  17. Hey Shane, Thanks so much for taking the time to share all of your knowledge with us all!!

    I have spent a lot of time reading your blog to learn as much as I can from you, but I have a couple questions for you to clarify if you have the time please.

    I am considering purchasing the 5D MkII or 7D for shooting short films, music videos etc, and I understand that the 7D sensor is practically the same size as 35mm motion picture film, whereas the 5D sensor is larger than this.

    I keep hearing people say that the 7D is better for filmmakers, and Im trying to understand why before I make my purchase. One thing it seems is the lenses – Am I correct in saying that you could use Cine lenses (Primos, master primes, ultra primes with an adapter) on either, but that they would be the perfect size for the 7D sensor, whereas the wider lenses would vignette on the 5D.

    What is your recommendation for filmmaking? 7D with smaller sensor and 50/60 fps or the 5DMKii with a larger sensor and better low light performance?

    Also, just reading your response to Robert Jureit (above), are you saying that you would choose the L-Series glass over the Zeiss ZE lenses for the 5DMkii? The reason I ask is because I thought the ZE primes were being recommended as the best (in the inexpensive category) glass for all canon HD-DSLRs…

    Thankyou very much for your time.

    Leon :)

    ps. if you have time you might like to view the music vid I shot with the 5DMkii in March 2010

    http://genero.tv/watch-video/6770/

    Post a Reply
    • Leon C, Thank you for your kind words. The 5D has the most filmic sensor, so this is the one I use as my A camera. The 7D becomes my crane camera so that I can put the wide cinema primes on there. The fact still remains that the 7D is no as good as the 5D, but I need to use both. Here is the deal with the glass. The Zeiss primes deliver a contasty, cold, sharp look. If this fits your story than these lenses are perfect. The Canon glass is creamy but sharp, colorful, and neutral if this fits your story than these lenses are what you need. I base my lens choice on what the story tells me. You are very welcome.

      Post a Reply
  18. Hi Shane
    First of all, I would like to congratulate you on all your great work.
    I am writing, because i need some recommendation on lenses. I am an Actor here in Miami, FL and love the arts.
    I love working in front of the camera and found a big passion for behind the camera. I recently purchased the 7D and want to make Independent films and commercials, but did not know the lenses to purchase. Your info about Sound and everything else is great. I purchased everything you mention for the 7D. I want to purchase the ZEISS ZE lenses.
    But in the stores, they have this description: Zeiss Ikon 1.4/85mm Planar T* ZE
    Would this be the model? Or should it say Zeiss ZE only?
    I was thinking of buy the 25mm and the 85mm, since you already recommended it to Robert. But i want to buy 3 lenses to cover most of the ranges for independent films and commercials…which ones would you recommend me?
    I really appreciate it if you can help me out.
    Best Regards
    David Jaure

    Post a Reply
  19. Thanks very much for that prompt reply Shane – Bought the 5DMk2 today, and Im looking to get the ZE primes. Of course I would love to get a set of ZE primes and a set of L-series primes, but unfortunately I cant afford that. Instead I am going to buy one ZE prime and save like crazy to buy more. Im thinking either the 50mm or 85mm- whats your recommendation?

    PS. My plan is to stick with the ZE primes and try to warm up the cold look in post where the story calls for it.

    Thanks again!!

    Post a Reply
    • Leon C, you are very welcome. The 50mm is a great lens. I love the 85mm also. I went to Canon for the 100mm Macro though. It is by far one of their best lenses and the barrel does not move when focusing like the ZE. You cannot put a Zacuto zip gear or a Red Rock gear on the ZE 100mm Macro and focus.

      Post a Reply
  20. Hi Shane

    Sorry to bother you, but i dont know if you read my message.
    I wanted to know if you can recommend me with the lenses…I am really new at this and would love you advice.

    If you can, please check out the commercial I did for our Golf Stores here in Miami FL.
    My Girlfriend is the Model and used the basic 10-24mm Canon EOS IS and the 28-135mm Canon EOS IS that comes with the Canon 7D.

    Here is the link to the Commercial:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fbGMkCPYtMc

    I would really appreciate your help.
    Thanks
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, I checked out your commercial. Very nice table top photography. How can I help with your lens choice? I would stay away from the zooms. They do not resolve well and look soft.

      Post a Reply
  21. hi Shane

    Thank you very much for answering my post. I went ahead with your advice and purchased the zeiss ze lenses in 85mm, 50mm and the 18mm wide.I went ahead with some answers and advice you gave others.
    What do you think about my choice?

    I just want to make sure it was the correct choice.
    They would be used for commercials and independent films.
    If you have other tips, it would be greatly appreciated.

    If you play golf or drink wine, let me know since that is my business.
    Best regards
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, I drink wine, I collect wine, and I love it. For those macro c.u. that you were doing on the Golf clubs I would suggest the Canon 100mm Macro IS. It kicks serious ass and is one of Canon’s best.

      Post a Reply
  22. Hi Shane

    Thank you very much for your recommendation.
    I went ahead with your recommendation and i really appreciate it.

    If you want, i could send you a couple bottles of our wines from Argentina, Mendoza.
    if you have any address or PO Box i could send it, let me know.
    here is our web page, if you would like to check them out: http://www.jaurewinery.com
    Best regards
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, you are very welcome. I am glad I could help. I would love some wine, thank you so much. That is so generous of you. You can send it to:
      The Bandito Brothers
      Attn: Shane Hurlbut
      3233 S. La Cienga Ave.
      Los Angeles, CA. 90016

      Post a Reply
  23. Perfect!
    I will be shipping them out tomorrow from my office here in Miami FL.
    So you will receive it in about 4-5 working days. In the couple of bottles
    i am sending you, there is also a meritage which is very unique: Cab, Malbec, and Syrah
    We only made 10,600 bottles and are grateful to receive 92 points from Robert Parker.

    Well, hope you enjoy it.
    Best regards
    David

    Post a Reply
  24. Hello Shane,

    I already shipped out the bottles of Wine to the address you sent me.
    Hope you enjoy them. It shipped out UPS Ground so will probably take 5 days to arrive.

    I had a couple of questions on recommendations. I have purchased everything you have recommended so far in the Blogs. Now i was interested in purchasing a meter. Would you think it would be necessary? Since i am new and not that experienced, what meter would you recommend, so that it would help me adjust the camera correctly (exposure, ISO, F Stop)?

    The 2nd question, what lighting would you recommend to do low budget independent films. I have heard about the LED lighting. I currently own2 Softlights and 2 Monolights with Gels. Would i need anything else?

    Thank you very much
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, wow, thank you so much again for that, you did not have to. The Spectra meter is the best. Film Tools has them. I light everything to eye and then I read it on the meter so that I can match the next set-up, that is the only time I pull it out. The 12 x 12 LED panels are nice, but harsh, you have to diffuse the hell out of them. Kino Flo’s are cool and then build some of my batten lights. I told Shaun how to build them. They kick ass. You are welcome, can’t wait to taste the Malbec.

      Post a Reply
  25. Thank you very much for your help.
    I have looked at the Spectra meter on the web and there are a couple different ones.
    1st option:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/245899-REG/Spectra_Cine_18002ABL_Professional_IV_A_P_2000EL_A_Digital.html
    2nd option:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/329964-REG/Spectra_Cine_18007SPR_Spot_Meter_System_.html

    Which one would you recommend?

    I hope you enjoy the Malbec and the Meritage…they are both great wines.
    THank you
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, 1st Option is the right one. That other is a wanker of a contraption. Yeah baby can’t wait to enjoy the vino.

      Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, I got the wine, thank you so much. It was excellent. When I walked into Bandito Brothers and saw the box my eyes lit up. I immediately opened it. I tried the 2003 the first night and it knocked me out, very smooth. Thanks again, you did not have to do that.

      Post a Reply
  26. Hello Shane

    I am very glad you enjoyed the Wine.
    It is my pleasure to send you our Wines and happy you liked it.
    I really appreciate your help with the blogs and recommendations.

    Since i am in love with being in front and behind the camera,
    it really helps me on what product to buy and also educates me in
    the technical aspect.

    By the way, i just did a small project for our Wines on my own, and put my girlfriend as the model.
    It was shot with a 28mm lens Zeiss ZE Prime that you recommend for Canon 7D. I did a little color corrected.

    Please let me know if there is anything i could improve on. But i must say, there isnt much of a story, except looking sexy and drinking and enjoying a good glass of wine.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nb-s7eEcA2o

    Thank you once again and hope you enjoy the 2nd bottle.
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, the Zeiss lens only looks good because your girlfriend is hot as hell. Holy S*&%. You are very lucky man. You are welcome.

      Post a Reply
  27. Jajajajaj
    if there is any project in the future and u need a sexy girl and somewhat sexy guy , we are available! Jaaaa
    well I did see the difference in the zeiss lenses to the canon. The color and depth of feel is so much richer in the zeiss. It is
    day and night .

    But you are right, If I had a chubby girl laying on that chaise, The lens might have cracked! Ja

    best regards
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, thank you for your support. When my next project calls for that, I am definitely calling. All the best.

      Post a Reply
  28. HI Shane

    Sorry to bother you, just needed a little help with Sound.
    I purchased the NTG-3 Boom Set, the Rode Mic and the H4N Zoom.
    As you can see, your recommendations have been great!

    I need some help with the set up when you record sound for a short film. What would be
    the set up for the H4N? I dont want to learn by making mistakes and always appreciate your help.

    The other thing, after i record each scene with the H4N, how do you know what scene it pertains to?
    would i need to use a slate for the H4N as well? Cause i will probably download this Sync program called SINGULAR.

    Sorry for the long Essay,
    Best regards
    David

    Post a Reply
  29. Hello Shane

    I want to thank you very much for Gene’s contact. He really helped me out.
    I have a different question. IF you had to use a cam for an Independent Film or
    Commercial, which cam would you use:

    Option 1
    Camcorder Canon XL-H Models?

    Option 2
    Canon SLR Cam 7D or 5D?

    I have the 7D and really like it.
    But are there many differences in using one or the other, except the Zeiss Lenses Choices i have.
    Best regards
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, I would use a 5D hands down, far more cinematic than the XL. There are many lenses you can mount on the Canon’s with right adapters.

      Post a Reply
  30. Thank you so much!
    I was doubting myself and wanted to get your thoughts.
    Thanks again
    Did you drink the Malbec yet?

    Post a Reply
  31. Hey. I’m Jet.

    The more I research on the 5D, the more your website/blog comes up and then I realize, “It’s the DoP from Terminator: Salvation. Cool!” I personally thought the film was one of the best in franchise — second only to T2, in my opinion — because I honestly thought the way it was shot/lit helped saved the script (sorry, if that offended anyone, but the story had more potential). So, I guess I’m an admirer of your work. Kudos!

    I’m basically a no-budget filmmaker from the Town and I own a Canon HV20. I want to get a 5D, but I may settle on the t2i whenever I may get $800…lol. Wanted an expert opinion on how well does the t2i stack up against the 5D?

    Also, I recently finished a no-budget feature with my HV20, RODE VideoMic, and whatever lighting I had access to (lamps and clouds). But I recently purchased two 1600 softbox lights for my next project (a neo-noir aspiration). What I’m saying is, I’d like an opinion on what I could improve on so my next feature won’t look/feel amateurish. Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RT2vYQ2zoiE

    Thank you for your time!

    Post a Reply
  32. hi Shane

    Hope you are having a great Holiday and wish you a happy new years!
    I am writing to ask for your opinion on a music video a shot with NO budget at all.
    Since i began a little over a year ago, I learned everything through the net and your page and
    blog helped so so much. From buying my equipment, lighting, sound, etc,…In other words, you have been my
    teacher through the web.

    Anyways, I am putting the Music Video I shot with my Canon 7D, Zeiss lenses and all the equipment you recommended. I would really appreciate if you can watch it and give me your feedback? I don’t mind
    criticism at all. It’s actually better, as to help me learn more and do it better next time.

    I will be waiting for your answer and wish you and your closest a very Happy New Years!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPe4nApBIPo

    PS: unfortunately i couldnt use my girlfriend on this one. jajaja
    let me know if you want more of our wines, i would be delighted to send you some. it would be a pleasure for you to drink them. Thanks (David)

    Post a Reply
  33. HI Shane

    I forgot to ask you a very important question.
    I see you recommend CS5 for editing…I presently have Final Cut Studio and i am very familiar with it, except
    the pain it is to render. I see that not only do you recommend it, but you dont need to render and change the codec.
    This is a very important decision and would like to ask you if you recommend me changing it?
    Since i am very familiar with FCS, will it be difficult to learn CS5?

    Well, I really appreciate you help and knowledge.
    All the best and Happy New Years
    David

    Post a Reply
    • David Jaure, I highly recommend Adobe Premiere Pro CS5. It is the ultimate. Check below I have listed all of the web based places and books on how to use it. If you have edited on FCP it will not be a big change other than you will not be rendering and ever looking at another scroll bar or watch your h.264 codec come crashing down 3 times while you output. You are very welcome and Happy New Year to you.

      Post a Reply
  34. Wow. That’s a cracking work out there, Shane. Seriously.

    Congrats for the initiative of the blog. Helping people the way you do is something rare nowadays. You respond to every question with honesty in your words. Wicked.

    I’m particularly happy with your recommendation of using Zeiss lens.
    I just bought a Nikon D7000 and a Zeiss Planar T* 85mm f/1.4 ZF.2 Lens, as I can’t (and won’t) afford the Compact Primes. My next Lens will be the Distagon 35mm T* f/2 ZF.2 Lens when I get some money.

    I know 2 years have passes since your last comments. And the Compact Primes (CP2) came to revolutionise. everything again.

    But, for someone that is starting, but with a SERIOUS commitment to produce astonishing images, you think I will be in the right way to ? What other gear you recommend to complement the use of these lens and produce the closest “cinematic look” (overused term, I know), in a Digital SLR like the Nikon D7000 (not a full frame, but this will be okay for a couple of years).

    Although my main goal is to write and direct, Cinematography comes as a passion and as of same importance. I need cracking images to ‘align’ with the serious documentaries I intend to shoot soon.

    I have also 2 Bolex 16mm, a Rex-5 and a EL with ‘okay’ Kern lens, and two Arri 16s with 2 Schneider lens and also a Kinoptik 5.7mm (this Arri kit I will have to invest in fixing some stuff). The 16mm will be used to some narrative shorts I will shoot soon.

    Hope to talk to you through here anytime you can. At this moment in my life it would be of great help.

    And if you pop down in London anytime, let me know so we can arrange to meet in a pub and drink some beer (or whisky).

    All the best for you.

    Flavio

    Post a Reply
  35. *To all*
    I’m making a final major project at college and it’s a post apocalyptic film.
    we’ve got Sony Ex1′s and Canon 60D’s but I’m trying to look for the best lens for the 60D to shoot with for the best look for this film,
    if there is any chance someone can reply to me as soon as possible with the answer, or any tips and guides I would be really appreciative

    Post a Reply
  36. Hi Have you ever tried
    Contax Carl Zeiss 24-85mm f3.5-4.5 Vario Sonnar T
    I need zoom lens for fs100 with very comfortable manual control .
    I know this one is dark . Can you recommend any old zoom lens for reasonable price.
    http://www.shawnlam.ca/2011/sony-fs100-prime-lens-vs-zoom-lens/
    Shawn Lam compare Prime lens vs Zoom lens for fs100
    His test shows me that there is no big difference.
    I do not know what to think ,fs100 has 3.43M pixels ,canon 5dm3 much more . So maybe there is no point to use very expensive lens for fs100 because sensor has limit of resolution ?? I can get sony 16-50 , 70-200 all with f2.8 but I am afraid they do not give me good manual control .

    Post a Reply

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