35mm adaptor recommendations for JVC HD110
I am attempting to gather some wisdom and experience of this group before I plunk down some hard earned cash on piece of gear I have high hopes for, a 35mm adaptor. I have a JVC HD 110 and I am very happy with it. Documentary/ commercial production/corporate stuff is what makes up the bulk of my work load. I shave been lusting after a nice short depth of field for years now and I have found some ways to work it with my stock zoom lens. But I am thinking of buying a 35mm adaptor to capture a tighter DoF in more situations, and I was hoping to hear from the collective about what has worked for you and what hasn't? Ease of use, realability and anything else that strikes you about any adaptor and all its accsories you've had experience with. Tips, tricks or stories would be greatly appreciated. Specifically any body who has some experience using an 35mm adaptor with the HD 110?
I see a lot of great deals on eBay for used adaptors....but I often wonder if I am getting everything I would really need. Obviously I will need 35mm lenses. A set of rails and a support system.
I am leaning toward a Letus or a flip module for a standard adaptor. I realize I will lose .5 to another stops worth of light with a flip or so but it seems worth it to not have to flip everything in post later? Thanks in advance.
P.S. thanks to Todd Terry for a great article I read a while ago on creative cow!
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Thanks for reading.
A lot of it depends on how much you are willing to spend. There are DoF converters that are dirt cheap and some that are wildly expensive... and they do tend to fall in the "you get what you pay for" category.
Since you have a camera with a removable lens, I personally would much more readily consider those DoF units that allow you to remove the camera lens and attach the DoF unit to the body directly (usually with a small relay lens that is part of the DoF converter).
This is going to result in a much more compact and user-friendly rig, not a rig that is three feet long and cumbersome. A direct-attached unit will be much more elegant, MUCH easier to use, and give better (and easier) results).
That does, however, limit your choices, as most of the DoF converters out there just attach to the front of your stock zoom. I don't want to be too much of a cheerleader for them (which I know I am), but the Mini35 from P+S Technik would be the very top choice. It is a fantastically built and designed piece of equipment (I use one every day), extremely precise, and completely trouble free. You never have to worry about setting it up, tweaking things, struggling with getting the promised results.... which you do hear a lot about many of the other converters. And there is a model made to fit your existing camera body.
On the downside... these units are expensive. More than your camera itself. A lot more. But I will say they are worth every penny and it just depends on the kind of work you do as to whether it justifies the investment.
And yes... you need lenses. They can be as cheap as SLR still lenses or as expensive as real motion picture cine lenses. Again, you get what you pay for. It can all get exponentially expensive, too, as I learned first-hand. As I said the DoF unit we use cost us more than the camera itself (Canon XLH1), and then the lenses we needed were more than the camera and the DoF converter combined... so it can add up in a hurry and really burn a hole in your wallet in no time flat. BUT... you can do it on the cheap and still get decent results. I'd suggest searching the forums with the terms "DoF" and "depth of field," as there have been literally hundreds of posts about this already and you'll probably find some great information that already exists on the COW.
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