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Fujifilm MK cine zooms

Discussion in 'Videography' started by pszilard, Sep 14, 2018.

  1. pszilard

    pszilard RemektekMedia.com

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    Fuji is (has) releasing X mount versions of their 2 "budget" cine zooms, the MK series. These are US$4,000 and US$4,300 optics, which apparently in cine world make them a bargain, however for prosumers and hybrid videographers they are not exactly bargain basement.

    I have read many of the reviews and I've come to realise some of the special features of these, such as:
    1. Mechanical focus and zooming, which guarantees exact positional fidelity
    2. Clickless aperture
    3. Constant light transmission (T stop)
    4. Identical size and position of control rings
    But 2 features that lesser priced zooms have, are missing. No OIS and no AF. Now with IBIS, you can accept no OIS, but is lack of AF the elephant in the room??? Now before all hardened videographers jump up telling me that we have focus peaking and true video shooters usually have an assistant focus puller anyway, I still find that this is a serious missing feature, especially in situations when I don't have a 7" monitor attached to aid focus and even with manual focus, I often make use of back button focusing.

    How do you guys feel? And PLEASE do not reply to say that you don't shoot video, as that will not be helpful ;)
     
  2. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    As a starter with video I currently don’t consider investing in cine lenses. I feel for my first steps I’m OK with:

    - XF 16-55 f/2.8
    - XF 23 f/1.2
    - XF 35 f/1.4
    - XF 90 f/2
    - a couple of Canon MF lenses + adapter
    - Lee ND filters

    On my wishlist is a gimbal, and maybe the XF 16 (the 16-55 is quite heavy), a field monitor and external mic. Let’s see how I progress...
     
    LionSpeed likes this.
  3. gduncanson

    gduncanson battery sherpa

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    AF is wonderful; when its 100% reliable. Otherwise, you're looking at a retake and what if you can't, or what if working with a very shallow depth of field your goal is to switch subjects without moving the frame. Old lenses can be made clickless. It is an age old promise that the best gear yields the best results; I still subscribe to the notion that practice, knowing how to make your vintage gear record the story and post proc. tell the story you want to tell will yield better results than gear alone. Lots of youtubers do remarkable things with $50 lenses, the common denominator seems to fast lenses, my mir24 is a good example. Obviously, there are industry standards and personal standards of what is acceptable; and they can be just as important as the story.

    disclaimer: I don't shoot much video but my local group includes serious videographers and they'd probably say lens choice depends on "the look" the customer is looking for.
     
  4. robert

    robert Administrator Staff Member

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    I'm no expert but the cine lenses from Zeiss are all manual focus, correct? And much more $$$$$.
     
    Blaine likes this.
  5. GregWard

    GregWard Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm sure I'm going to be overly simplistic here - but the obvious point to remember is that video is a continuous process. So aspects of a lens design (such as AF and OIS) that are very desirable for stills photography (well by and large anyway) can be the exact opposite for video. For example IS can easily mistake the beginning of a pan shot for an unwanted camera movement - so it attempts to cancel it out before realising its mistake and "jumping" to catch up. Likewise an "oops - let me correct that focus for you" moment might not matter with a series of still shots (might even be desirable) but could ruin a video clip.

    Net the best suited lenses for video need to be designed in a different way. Desirable features (such as the ability to link to add-on focus and/or zoom aids) get in the way (and add unnecessary cost) for stills photography and vice versa for videography.
     
    bralk likes this.
  6. Price

    Price Premium Member

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    Shot plenty of video with pro gear (Panasonic VariCam). Never even heard of auto focus with pro video lenses. What works is excellent focus peaking and zebras. Good luck!
     
  7. Mr SMW

    Mr SMW Triple Platinum Member

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    I shoot video and really want to like and have the wider of these, but...

    There are times when I need AF such as when my XH1 is on the monopod while I'm shooting stills at the same time.

    I shoot wedding videos not feature films so can't really justify a 4k lens when there's an f1.8 Sigma 18-35 available under 1k including Fringer AF adapter.

    True it's not a 'video lens', but IMO it's the best current wide zoom option going and IS with the XH1.

    For manual focus, Samyang/Rokinon make some superb (and again, faster) T stop cine lenses for a couple of hundred each. Smaller, lighter, faster.

    I have the Samyang 50mm T1.3 and just ordered the 21mm T1.5. Under 700 the pair.

    Nah, can't justify an MK as cool as those metallic green rings are.
     
  8. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    Not with Fuji Mount what I found on the web. How to you connect? I mean what mount which adapter?
     
  9. pszilard

    pszilard RemektekMedia.com

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    I completely agree with you Oliver!

    If you shoot 4k you get a small degree of crop in, so good wide angle lenses are essential. I also love the 14mm, however the 16mm f1.4 had become one of my favourites. I always have the linear focusing option set on camera, too. Lastly, remember that audio is just as important as the picture!
     
  10. pszilard

    pszilard RemektekMedia.com

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    A very useful "alternative" to clickless aperture is a variable ND filter. Just need to avoid shooting through car windows, that play havock with the cross-polarizers in the var- ND filters. Another option I found is using a mount converter. I have a Kippon to mount my Nikon lens (manual focus), but the adapter has a clickless aperture control, so just use that instead of the one on the lens.
     
  11. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    Paul,
    The 14 mm is also on my shelf ;) I have to try and see how I‘ll used the different focal lengths. With the 16-55 I can try and see if 16 mm is something I want (prime). Up to now I don‘t plan to record dialogs or interviews. That’s why the audio is at the end of my list...
    What’s linear focusing option btw? Have to look it up in the Menu.
    Oli
     
  12. pszilard

    pszilard RemektekMedia.com

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    Difficult to find! Here it is:
    1. Select the SPANNER menu (1 below Video)
    2. BUTTON/DIAL SETTING
    3. goto page 2/3
    4. FOCUS RING OPERATION: LINEAR
    Means that although we have focus by wire, it should return to the same spot when rotating the focus ring.
     
  13. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    Ah wow, that's useful. Thanks! I was talking to a store selling the Zhiyun Crane 2 with the external follow focus unit (stepper motor mounted to the gimbal and lens) and he told me that some of his customers use the follow focus unit with Fuji lenses and have reported that it works. I asked him exactly because of the weird, kind of infinity focus rings of the Fuji lenses. These guys must use the same setting on the cameras. The way this specific follow focus works (no gear but a band like a wire tie [I struggle to find the right word in English]), I imagined trouble because it can operate only a distinct angle (320°?). Good that we talked about cine lenses ;)
     
  14. Mr SMW

    Mr SMW Triple Platinum Member

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    All available Fuji X mount! I bought the 50mm from I think WEX in the UK and the 21 is coming from Hong Kong (eBay).

    No adapters needed!
     
  15. pszilard

    pszilard RemektekMedia.com

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    External motor driven follow focus should work with any lens, once you attach a geared rubber ring to it, provided that you have control link to the focusing motor. Definitely sounds encouraging.

    Last night I was on sound for a short movie shoot. The camera man had a Zhiyun Crane 2 and GH5 (no focus link used). It worked ok, but the GH5 has a flip out LCD, which meant that having the gimbal motor level behind the camera was less of an issue. For us Fuji users, I still think that the Ronin S is the better option, with the gimbal motor placed below the camera's LCD. It will be interesting to see if Fuji and DJI can get together to provide an interface for focus/zoom control from the gimbal, but using a remote motorised option like what you described, should be a great alternative.
     
  16. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    OK I found the Samyang 16 mm Cine with Fuji mount. Maybe it's discontinued because in many shops it's out of stock.
    Thanks
     
  17. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    I was referring especially to the Zhiyun mechanical follow focus which has not a gear that connects to the gear (or geared rubber ring) of the lens. It comes with a band already that you wrap around the lens. Due to how the band is fixed, the motor can't turn it over ca. 320 degrees. Means a linear behaviour of the Fuji lens comes in handy.
    I know that you're after the DJI gimbal, there is this other thread ;). Unfortunately Zhiyun doesn't take part at the Photokina and I can't check the Crane 2 out. DJI is there though...
    The issue with the motor behind the LCD might be an issue, you're right. The Ronin allows viewing the XH1 LCD when you have the camera and Gimbal infront of you. Imagine an overhead or low shot. Having no flip-out screen on the XH1 is not nice in any way.
    But if I get serious with video shooting and buy the crane 2, the extra 200 bucks for a field monitor isn't that much.
     
  18. Mr SMW

    Mr SMW Triple Platinum Member

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    Ebay is your friend with this Oliver, - most of the sellers sell there. I couldn't find an X mount 21mm anywhere in the UK or France. No idea who these sellers are, but if purchased through Ebay, you are protected.
     
  19. (c)ow

    (c)ow Premium Member

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    Will try with my 16-55 first and then see if I want the Samyang. Good thing though it shares the same filter threat size with the 16-55 so I can use my Lee holder and adapter.
    Oli
     

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