Home LensesCinema Glass Altering Lenses For Peak Performance

Altering Lenses For Peak Performance

written by Shane Hurlbut, ASC

I have had many discussions about the different lens options other than Zeiss ZE’s and Canon’s that mount to the Canon cameras.  Zeiss took it to the next level with their Canon mount CP2’s and their new Zooms that come out this summer.  I support your creative vision; not what someone tells you is right for the camera or the fact that it has a Canon mount. Test for yourself, push the envelope, think out of the lens box.

Kowa 200mm 2.8

Kowa 200mm Prim Lens 2.8

Kowa 100mm Prime

Kowa 100mm Prime Lens

One of Herb Ritt's favorite medium format lenses Mamiya z180mm

One of Herb Ritts favorite Medium Format Lenses Mamiya z180mm

Using Lomo anamorphics, I think is very interesting. http://members.optusnet.com.au/~smort1/lomos/lomos Putting the Kowa’s on the camera will blow your mind with their contrast and flaring abilities. http://www.camerapedia.org/wiki/Kowa_lenses_for_other_cameras.  Leica’s deliver everything that the price tag dictates.  Using the medium format lenses.  I remember when I was working side by side with Herb Ritts, he loved the way Mamiya lenses delivered contrast and a creamy quality which was one of the unique qualities of Herb’s photographs.

1980 Lomo Round Front Lenses

1980 Lomo Anamorphic Round Front Lenses

Mid 70's-80's Lomo Square Front Anamorphic Lenses

Mid 70’s-80’s Lomo Square Front Anamorphic Lenses

Lenses are a very personal choice for both a photographer and cinematographer.  They can create a mood and give a certain style to a film that another lens would not.  So I ask all of you to experiment with your creativity, to fly and use what makes you shine.

This path requires some altering to your lens of choice which will assist you in delivering images that will work visually and also technically.  Duclos Lenses in Canoga Park, CA is doing just that. http://www.ducloslenses.com They have a very intimate, customer service oriented lens altering, cleaning and calibrating. You name it they will do it to your lens company.  Most importantly, from a  DSLR shooter’s perspective they do three very essential things.  They de-click all of your f-stop rings, which is absolutely essential with the HD platform.  Most of the still lenses that are set on 1/2 stop click increments.  By de-clicking the lenses, you can be more exact with your exposures.  A 1/3 of a stop increment could be the difference of whether you can hold that beautiful big puffy cloud in the sky and their backlit faces in the frame.

Duclos Lenses Cine-Mod//applies 32 pitch Delrin gear rings

Duclos Lenses Cine-Mod//applies 32 pitch Delrin gear rings

Duclos Lenses Cine-Mod//applies 32 pitch Delrin gear rings

Duclos Lenses Cine-Mod de-clicks your aperture ring

Delrin black 32 pitch gear rings

Delrin black 32 pitch gear rings

The other essential thing that they do is put black Delrin, perfectly machined standard 32 pitch gauge gear rings on your lenses that are stable and secure, yet you will have the ability to remove if needed.  Almost any lens can be outfitted with gears for the zoom, focus or iris.  Duclos rings increase the diameter of the lens to give you more of a cinematic throw of focus.

Panavision Primo Cinema Style Lens w/ footage markings on the side of the barrel

Panavision Primo Cinema Style Lens w/ footage markings on the side of the barrel, notice that the markings go around the whole barrel, this is what gives you that cinema style focus throw, not just 2 -3 inches like most still lenses

Cinema lenses have markings that are inscribed on the lens barrel from minimum focus to infinity and they are spaced out in a way that a focus puller can see them and when you rack focus from 5 feet to infinity it is not an 1/8 of an inch away on your focus wheel or remote follow focus handset.

This is great for a still photographer because the auto focus does not have to travel a long distance which makes it fast to grab focus on what you are lensing.  But when making movies you need more distance between footage marks.  This is so important when it comes to understanding motion.  Your focus is an extension of your creative vision.  It can misdirect the audience and assist in showing the viewer where the director wants them to look or  bring attention to an emotion, etc. So when you mount a larger diameter ring on a still lens you expand the distance between 5 feet and infinity, which then gives the lens more of a cinematic feel. When you rack focus from someone in the background to a object or person in the foreground it has a smooth focus throw, done with the speed that you prefer.  If it is a horror film and you want to build suspense maybe the rack to the F.G. is slow and builds tension, or if you want to use it for a scare tactic the rack can be incredibly fast to reveal.

Duclos 80mm Rings that they affix to the front of your lens which will except 77mm screw-in filters

Duclos 80mm Rings that they affix to the front of your lens which will except 77mm screw-in filters

The third thing that Duclos does is to install a 80mm front ring, which will accept an inside 77mm thread.  Now all lenses have the same front size ring. This is a must for speed when you are shooting.  With still lenses, you have all diameters and sizes, this keeps it all one size.  Which means you only have to buy one ND filtration size.  This saves money, and time. Paul at Duclos has put these 3 essential modifications to your lens in a pkg., called the Cine Mod for a discounted price.

Dream, create and think out of the box.  Take lenses that no one would think of using and experiment.  What about plastic lenses? I want to see that!

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Brandon Cummins May 10, 2010 at 1:19 AM


This is a fantastic entry. I consistently find your posts to not only be highly informative, but half the time have my mind blown.

Thanks so much for mentioning Paul & his work. This is really phenomenal stuff.

Some quick questions…

When you mention “de-clicking” the f-stop ring… does it literally become a smooth transition between stops? or does it just take it to smaller increments (1/3 as opposed to 1/2)? I’m a bit hazy on what you’re referring to here…

Second (and I’ll check their website as well) do you happen to know off hand if Duclos will work on a lens that’s shipped to them? (I don’t see why they wouldn’t… just curious)

Third… I know you’ve mentioned it before, but as far as adapters for non-Canon lenses… what are you using to match the mount?

Cheers & Very Best!
– Brandon

Shane May 10, 2010 at 8:29 PM

Brandon Cummins, first, you are very welcome and thank you for your kind words and support. Now onto the creative stuff. De-clicking will make your transition iris pulls perfectly smooth. Second, Yes they will work on whatever and where ever they come from. Third, Novoflex or Fotodiox.

rod Hardinge May 10, 2010 at 3:40 AM

Hi Shane, you amaze me!You bounce stuff out of nowhere. Who else would mention Kowa lenses? For us older still guys Kowa cameras were a rather clunky version of the blad back in the 70’s?. And where are all those Nikon ai lenses that I used through the 70s and 80’s now when I need them?
Love your work!
Rod Hardinge Albury Australia

Shane May 10, 2010 at 8:54 PM

rod Hardinge, Thank you so much for those kind words and your undying support. You rock. I am shooting my next spot on the Kowa’s. They rock. Scarf up those Nikon AI’s, they are the best Nikon has to offer.

rod Hardinge May 10, 2010 at 3:43 AM

Ooops forgot!! those mamiya lenses from the same period did produce beautiful images. Cheers rod

Shane May 10, 2010 at 8:52 PM

rod Hardinge, yeah baby!!!

Norbert von der Heidt May 10, 2010 at 4:15 AM

I just gave Mamiya 645 lenses a try and bought five from ebay: 35mm, 45mm, 55mm, 80mm and 150mm along with a Zork Mamiya to EOS adaptor. There were a few problems with going this route, a couple of the lenses didn’t quite focus to infinity and a couple had very stiff focus action, so much so that when I tried to rack focus with my FF, the resistance caused the whole camera to be displaced off axis 180 degrees away from the point where the FF gear/lens meshed. Very disconcerting.

I usually use my Canon L series 17-35mm for the majority of my shooting and the fact that a Mamiya 35mm was still about the same as a 35mm in Canon, it didn’t give me any other real advantage except for the focus end stops and manual aperture control.

These lenses are now back on ebay and I’m probably going to just bite the bullet and buy a set of Zeiss’ from Redrock.

Shane May 10, 2010 at 8:52 PM

Norbert von der Heidt, I am not a big fan of any Canon zooms, they do not resolve well. You have to go with Novoflex or Fotodiox, true focus. The other mounts are not machined well and infinity will never come into focus. You can send those lenses to Paul at Duclos and he can make it so that they are not so tight. Just a thought. I hate to see you put those lenses up on E-bay.

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Eric Diosay May 10, 2010 at 2:52 PM

Way ahead of you, Shane. Paul is an excellent lens-master and I’ve been in contact with him regarding his cine-mods.

I’m going to send him my Zeiss ZF collection for iris declicking and ring attachment. As you mentioned in your blog, this will make life easier for still lens owners like me to use these lenses in a “cinematic” fashion.

I was going to go with his focus gear ring mod, but I wanted something more robust than delrin. I found Jerry at JBK Cinequipt (http://www.jbkcinequipt.com/) who makes gear rings out of billet aluminum. His work is also excellent but his website sucks…lol.

Great blog, as always!

Shane May 10, 2010 at 8:47 PM

Eric Diosay, thank you so much. Paul rocks.

Mike Andrade May 10, 2010 at 11:55 PM


Do you have any experience with the old Zeiss Flektogon or Pancolar m42 lenses? I just bought a Pancolar 50mm 1.8 for a buck fifty in mint condition on ebay. I figured it was worth checking out at that price.

Shane May 12, 2010 at 2:26 AM

Mike Andrade, I will check those out. Thank you so much.

Matt Grover May 11, 2010 at 7:09 AM

Great post! Def gonna look into de-clicking apertures on my old Nikon & Vivitar lenses! Those lomo-anamorphic lenses look amazing (based on that one popular Vimeo vid at least), seem pretty pricy tho 🙁 unless I’m looking in the wrong places!

Jerry May 11, 2010 at 5:29 PM

“I am not a big fan of any Canon zooms, they do not resolve well.”

Really? have you tried the new 70-200 2.8L IS II? They have really broken the resolution barrier with this lens (clearly better than the old version). looking at the resolution chart, it seems to compare very favorably to the Zeiss 85mm. Would like to get your opinion on that lens. Thanks as always

Shane May 12, 2010 at 2:25 AM

Jerry, I bought 2 and they are not bad. The best out of all the zooms. You are welcome.

Nathaniel Hansen May 11, 2010 at 9:12 PM

So much for “you learn something new every day…” cause I just learned about 2 dozen things from this article. Thank you Shane, for putting it together. Gonna take a few more reads to really sink in.


Sean Duran May 12, 2010 at 1:56 AM

Great post! I’ve been wanting an anamorphic adapter for a long time for my 7D, but haven’t been able to even find them anywhere.

Clint Muller May 12, 2010 at 6:18 PM


Have you experimented with the Leica R series lenses? I know they have a +/-260 degree rotation which would be better than most other 35mm lenses.

Clint Muller
(South Africa)

Shane May 14, 2010 at 3:21 AM

Clint Miller, I have not but I will look into it. Thank you so much for the tip. I love Leica lenses.

Chris Stevens May 13, 2010 at 9:00 AM


Thanks for sharing your knowledge. This blogs has been very helpful and has saved me a great deal of time by finding lots of useful information.

Have you experimented with any of the Hasselblad medium format lenses?


Shane May 14, 2010 at 3:19 AM

Chris Stevens, you are very welcome and yes I tested the Hasselblad lenses they resolved very much like the Zeiss ZE glass, and same colder color tones.

RobShaver May 13, 2010 at 6:09 PM


What do you think about the fact that the H.264 license limitations require that the Canon DSLR cameras should not be used for commercial purposes? http://dylanreeve.com/videotv/2010/the-mpeg-and-h-264-problem.html

Jobs is shoving HTML5 down our throats. If H.264 becomes the official codec then we could be in for trouble. MEG-LA says we can use it on the Internet for free, until 2015, but only for personal use. http://my.opera.com/haavard/blog/2010/02/04/h264-trickery

I just bought a Canon T2i with the intention of using it commercially. Since I’m small potatoes I’m sure it won’t affect me, but still … it rankles me. Patents and copyrights are stifling innovation, not promoting it.

Since you’re a professional, I thought you might want to blog on how you think it might affect other pros.

Man I’m getting a Scarlet as soon as they come out. I’m guessing that Red owns all the IP in it. But who knows.



Kent Smith May 13, 2010 at 11:16 PM

I love the Medium Format Lenses that Mamiya, but is there anyone out there that has converted those lenses for canon adapters. Thanks for the help.

jorn May 15, 2010 at 3:03 PM

Hey Shane, thanks for keeping up the good with another interesting blog.

Do you plan to test the Medium Format Carl Zeiss Jena lenses and the Contax Zeiss lenses in the near future. I’m very interested to see how they would hold up on the big screen.


Ignacio May 16, 2010 at 6:03 AM

Fantastic post shane. I love the way you do the things. I would like to ask you a few things. Have you test the ultra-micro-nikkors?, they have a fantastic reputation, I’m working with the micro nikkors (55mm, 105mm) and they have a incredible resolution. The last question is: Could I match footage from an Arri 21 with the 7D with succes? , I’m making the “behind scenes” of feature film and the director ask me to do some coverage with my 7D.
Thanks for your patience and support.

Shane May 17, 2010 at 1:04 AM

Ignacio, Thank you so much for your kind words and support, I have not tried those lenses but I have hired a lens researcher named Julien and he is in charge of searching all of your leads and what lenses you like at [email protected]. I will have him check it out. Yes I think you could pull of the 7D next to the D21. Your imagine will feel more organic and not so clean like his image, yours will have artifacting issues,moire issues, and rolling shutter issues, which seem much more apparent with the 7D then the 5D.

andrew May 17, 2010 at 5:11 PM

I was looking into the large format lenses just last week, after seeing that Photdisk had the adapters. I am not yet plunging in on the glass but like the idea and price. Any more input on this topic would be helpfull. Shane thanks for sharing your insights!

Shane May 18, 2010 at 12:36 PM

andrew, We will be looking into all of this glass over the summer to give insight. Thank you for all of your support.

Erik Wease May 20, 2010 at 2:02 PM

Hey Shane–

Awesome, awesome blog. You’re passion for cinema is incredible! And I have learned more technically from your blog, than from my 2 years (thus far) at NYU Film School (not an exaggeration).

Quick question — I am shooting a feature on a 7D in three weeks — everyone says that because HD’s frame size is only 2 megapixels, resolution is not that important (that is, cheaper glass like the Canon 50mm 1.8 is fine as mores expensive lenses are overkill).

What is your opinion about that? And what about the eventual image on a real Festival Movie screen? Do the cheaper lenses hold up?

Thanks again for everything!


Shane May 21, 2010 at 1:49 AM

Erik Wease, wow, thank you so much for those kind words. I am glad that you are getting great info. from this site. That is what Hurlbut Visuals is about to inspire and educate along with keeping a small footprint. I just shot “The LAst 3 Minutes” on Canon Glass. I have seen it on a 30′ screen and it is awesome. The reason I use Panavision glass is not only for the resolution but for the inherent qualities of the glass. It has a lens coating that is far superior to the still lenses in suppressing highlights and flares. This gives you more detail in your highlights that a Zeiss ZE would not or a Nikon. The other reason for using high end cinema lenses is because of the size of the glass. Most still lenses have a very small piece of glass which there light collecting abilities are limited because of that. The Canons have some of the biggest pieces of glass in the still lens selection, making them one of my first choices. But to say that because it is only 2 megapixels and you will not see the resolution is true in that aspect but not true in the fact that it is all about the glass.

jin ge August 28, 2010 at 4:26 AM

Dear Shane, Hello, it is good reading your blog regarding the potential and experiences that you demonstrated. A big Bravo to what you have done. I just met with Robb Cox from Australia in an equipment show in Beijing, China. He introduced your name to me, so that I took the liberty of writing to you for help. We bought two cinelenses, one Zeiss 10mm and a Angenieux 17-102 thinking that it could fit with 5D mark ii, but we are wrong, it came out each of them with a huge black corner vigniette, could you and your lense expert provide with some solutions? Buy the way, we are about to kick off a feature production, we are desperate, could you give us some advices on all aspect of the 5D or 7D equipments and post, otherwise, we have to spend a lot money renting RED package. Many thanks and best regards,

Jin Ge
The Shanghai Yan Bao Hang Public and Philanthropic Foundation

Shane September 4, 2010 at 12:23 AM

jin ge, thank you so much for your kind words, yes those lenses will only work on the 7D. The 5D and cinema lenses is a tricky thing, because each lens manufacturer vignettes at different millimeters. Here is what I know to be a fact. Ultra Primes 32mm, Cooke S4 Primes 65mm, Zeiss Master Primes 50mm, Zeiss super speeds 50mm. Dalsa 4K Primes 28mm, Panavision Primo’s 35mm. This gear conversation will require a phone conversation, not something I can write down. I need to know more about the project, the story and the style that you want to capture it in. You are very welcome.

Paul Kim September 30, 2010 at 3:22 PM

Shane, thanks as always for being magnanimous. There is absolutely no website out there that provides as much detail and insight as this one. And I save tons of time. Your BTS videos are pretty much as good as it gets, minus being out there on location with you or at your workshop–hope you continue to do those. If you ever think of putting a donate button on your page, I’ll make a contribution.

Question: I noticed you are always using the Zeiss ZE lenses. I’ve been having a hard time choosing between the ZE or ZF.2 with potential Duclos mod. Is there a reason you went with ZE’s instead? I shoot with the 5D and 7D.

Take care, and stay creative.

Shane October 1, 2010 at 1:04 AM

Paul Kim, Thank yo so much for all of those kind words and incredible support. I am glad you liked the BTS videos, I took a lot of time to make them informative, where it was not look at me look at me, but that you could get inside my head. Since buying the ZE lenses I have had tons more insight to their pros and cons. The biggest con is their contrast range, which reduces the ability of the Canon 5D to deliver its full dynamic range. As to whether I would go ZE or ‘s probably ZF’s because I could have Duclos de click them and then have the ability to do iris pulls.

Paul Kim October 1, 2010 at 8:08 PM

Thanks Shane, that’s pretty interesting, and ironic. It sounds like the contrast we all love in Zeiss stills ends up being a bit too extreme to maintain a wider dynamic range with the 5D–if I’m reading you right. Would it be accurate to say that over the months of testing, Leica lenses aside, you would take Canon L glass over the Zeiss glass?

Shane October 2, 2010 at 1:51 AM

Paul Kim, yes that is correct, but it all depends on the project. Some stories require a contrasty look, and that is where the Zeiss will play beautifully.

Paul Kim October 1, 2010 at 8:10 PM

Oh yeah, indeed, those BTS videos are great. Not only informative, but the problem with them is that it makes me want to go out, play with tons of cinematography/lighting gear, and make all sorts of films.

Chris August 21, 2011 at 1:36 AM

Hi Shane

Thanks for the fantastic resource that you provide.

Just wanted to ask if you have much experience with the very old NON AI Nikon lenses and if so what were your impressions. I’m guessing one of the differences would be the lack of lens coatings.

Any info would be great


Shane August 21, 2011 at 12:29 PM

Chris,You are very welcome and thank you for the support. I love those lenses. Far superior to the new ones Nikon is producing. Yellow in quality sharp but still creamy. I shot on 6 cameras with the old Nikons on the Prudential spot “Sunrise.”. I embraced the yellow quality. But to contract that a little I will shoot at 4900 degrees Kelvin on your color temp.

Chris August 22, 2011 at 4:18 AM

Hi Shane

Thanks for that, I wasn’t sure how far back you could go with the nikons. I’m thinking of getting a set of these pre multicoating vintage lenses. Have you any experience with the 50mm f1.4 vs the f2? I’ve also read that you don’t need to AI convert the lenses because of the EOS adaptor and being an EOS mount for use with a 5D which is good. I believe these pre AI nikons can damage modern nikon cameras. Have you had any problems with this on canon?

The “Sunrise” spot looks fantastic. Very very encouraging as i’m about to buy these lenses.

Thanks again shane


Shane August 22, 2011 at 2:19 PM

Chris, you need to use AI or AIS. Anything before that I haven’t used and have no experience with them. Fotodiox the Pro one is the best adapter that I have found. Thanks for the kudos on Sunrise. I had an amazing group of cinematographers help me bring this to life.

Hisham Aly September 22, 2011 at 3:37 AM

hello my work is mainly video and i shoot feature films in lowbudget, then transfare it to 35 mm screens “trailer for my 1st feature ”
so i do own some lenses , to my eyes and iam just a director and editor not dop, i think its ok u just add lil bit contrast after the zeiss to canon lens to match some times not but am not the expert here
do u think matching sets is very important , or the different look can easly matched during colour grading.
and do u think i could i shoot with this set as an example:” for 5d mark2
24-70L ” use it as a 24 and 35 end only”
zeiss ze 50 f1.4
canon 85 f1.8 or samyang 85 f1.4
sigma 150 f2.8
sigma 12-24 4.5-5.6 or samyang 14 f2.8
17-50 tamaron only for 7d on car mounts or danger positions
sigma 70-20 macro dg f2.8″ i dont use alot”
do u think this will match
or should i get loan and do changes
note: selling used in my country isnt easy and its not easy to sell my lever to buy new lenses so plz tell me what is bad in my collection appreciate u r help sorry for my bad english thxxxxxxxxxxxx thxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Shane September 27, 2011 at 12:57 AM

Hisham Aly, here is the deal. Getting a full set of either Canon or Zeiss is the best. Mixing and matching is ver difficult to deal with on a feature because each lens has its own characteristics, and these attributes is what influences your design of the look of your film. So getting a matched set is important.

Hisham Aly September 22, 2011 at 3:37 AM

sorry for being so long

Hisham Aly September 23, 2011 at 3:16 PM

my 24-70 canon l lens stoped working with no accident aperture stucked at f22 so i sent it out of my country to fix and i replaced my sigma 70-200 f2.8 with Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 IF EX DG HSM did i made right acording to lenses above i have

Shane September 27, 2011 at 12:50 AM

Hisham Aly, Sigma is an inferior lens compared to the Canon L series 24-70. Its glass is a whole different breed. I had several Sigma lenses when I started out. I would try to get your 24-70 Canon fixed.

Hisham Aly October 2, 2011 at 4:20 AM

thanks for u reply Sir
what do u think about my setup lenses above
i may just get canon 28mm f 1.8 instead of my canon or zeiss 24 -70 what do u think
thx again u r really a master in your work

Hisham Aly October 2, 2011 at 4:24 AM

for now i cant sell and buy no market here for used so wich lenses u advice me to avoid

Hisham Aly October 3, 2011 at 4:58 AM

also do u think when canon fixes it will it be usable again i mean for longterm or it could stop again in the middle of shooting??
just wonder
i didnt humilated this lens and i feel upset cas it just used for feew weeks and i bought it new but shame i didnt get the insurance
any way iam ifeel not satisfied due to this canon huge technology that costs us alot and we dont use it and finally it ruins our life so sad sorry

Hisham Aly October 7, 2011 at 7:03 AM

what about canon 24-105 f4 vs the new sigma 24-70 IF EX DG HSM

Shane October 7, 2011 at 10:08 AM

Hisham Aly, I am not a big fan of the 24-105mm, it changes f-stop when zooming and will not hold focus while zooming. It is a great lens to scout with. Haven’t checked out the 24-70 sigma.

Hisham Aly October 7, 2011 at 1:13 PM

thx again for u reply regarding u r note to get a matched set i already sold my lensesits very cheap selling u r used lenses here “sigma 12-24,sigma 24-70, tamaron 17-50,sigma 150 f2.8 macro” sold all of them to store and got
“canon 24-105 f4 L its fstop isnt changing,and canon 70-200 f4″new
was it a good deal?
i mean for quality not money
i also have primes for low light work if it happens” used to shoot in lighted scenes”
canon 85f1.8
zeiss 50 f1.4 ze
rokinon 14 and 85
amm welling to buy thecanon 28 f1.8 also but after i recieve the cannon 24-70 that i will sell and get the 28mm
will now my set match i mean is it stilll a big deal that i insert the 50 zeiss in this set thx
am sorry for disturbing and asking alot

Hisham Aly October 8, 2011 at 7:38 AM

some one pointed to me to return the canon 24-105 and canon 70-200 “mentioned above”
and get the canon 16-35 wich the same store have”ver1″
then i loose the 24-200 range of the 2 zooms in my reg???
do u agree
also i think that f4 isnt that slow indoor according to what u say “keep 5d exposed at f4 or 5.6”
plzz help iam loosing alot of money in getting and returning
lol poor filmmaker but ambetious
sorry for disturbing

George Wright November 22, 2011 at 10:47 PM

Nice article I like it keep them coming 🙂

Draganche November 28, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Hey Mr. Shane,
one question,what do you think about Super Multi-Coated Takumar 50mm f/1.4?
I find them at very affordable price.

Thanks in advance.

Shane December 11, 2011 at 9:07 AM

Draganche, so much of what makes this camera and its sensor shine is great glass. Be very careful going with something affordable. The glass is what you save up for to get the best.

sri March 12, 2012 at 2:20 PM

Hi Shane,

Your blog is like a film school for me. Thanks for your education.
I am about to start a small budget feature film, i have owned a canon 7d and tokina 11 – 16 lens.i want to rent the remaining lens required. Can you please suggest some lens for me. I like the Lecia lens but i could not get one in my country. Can you give me some options that fit my EF camera. Or do i need to change the mount of the camera.

Shane March 13, 2012 at 12:46 AM

sri, You can use Canon L series glass 14, 24,35,50,85,100mm primes. Nikon AI and AIS lenses work very well, just need a nikon to Canon Fotodiox adapter on your lenses.

sri March 13, 2012 at 5:46 AM

Hi Shane,

After so much of effort i could get one leica lens set in my country but they are
1.28mm leica R f/2.8
2. 50mm leica R f/2
3. 50mm canon ef f/1.4
4. 90mm leica R f/2
5. 180mm leica R f/4

Are they good for movie making. i shoot mostly interior with low light. Shall i go ahead with these lens or some fast primes from Canon L series or Nikon AI seris?

Thanks very much for your comments.

J. Nathan Evans April 5, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Hey Shane and Team,

Thanks for another excellent article. My dad has a lovely set of Mamiya 6 lenses. I’ve been able to find adapters for 645’s to Canon EOS, but nothing specific to the Mamiya 6 lenses. Do you know if the same Fotodiox 645 to EOS adapter would work for the 6 lenses?


Shane April 7, 2012 at 9:21 AM

J. Nathan Evans, I have no idea. So sorry

Kyle May 8, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Hi Shane, I’m currently shooting on a 5D Mark II. I’m deciding whether to go Zeiss ZE or Canon L series for a set of primes. I realize each film is different but in most filming situations as my main kit would you suggest to invest Canon L series or Zeiss ZE primes? Thank you for your advice.

Kyle May 8, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Aside from Leica lenses.

Craig June 21, 2012 at 8:07 AM

Shane, thank you so much for your blog. It has been such a great reference in my venture into cinema. I’m currently shooting with the 5D M.II, and recently purchased the L series 24-105mm. I saw that you weren’t impressed with some of it’s qualities, and I was hoping you could give us a little more detailed rundown of the positives and negatives. How might we improve the output of this lens? Regards, Craig.

Shane June 27, 2012 at 5:43 PM

Craig. Thanks for the comment and support. The L series 24-105mm has a good focal range to it and the image stabilization is great. With most zooms though they aren’t as sharp or fast (lower f-stop) as prime lenses. I like the lens a lot for scouting and when I need image stabilization, but I go for prime lenses when I want the best image quality possible. Thats how DSLR zoom lenses are. You trade some sharpness and speed for the ability to change focal lengths.


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