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Prime Versus Zoom

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Daniel Gold
Prime Versus Zoom
on Mar 6, 2011 at 7:52:15 pm

I will be shooting a short doc in India less than 2 weeks from now.
I will be renting the new Sony PMW-F3L. I am trying to pick the best combination of lenses to rent within my budget.

The subject is a school for kids living in poverty. Ill be shooting indoors and out, and @ the homes of a few very poor families in Bangalore.

It will be a mixture of handheld and sticks but dont know what percentage of either. Natural light as much as possible. I'll have three battery operable light panels.

I am used to getting coverage quickly on docs using an HD zoom lens on a HDX900 but on this I want to use Primes as much as possible.

I want to bring a zoom lens in the event the primes are making it too difficult to get the verite coverage i need.

At the moment my budget allows for the following: An Angenieux Optimo DP 30-80 T2.8 and a set of Arri/Zeiss T2.1 primes.

I cant afford the faster lenses (unless I rent one or two instead of a set) and the longer zooms are ergonomically and economically beyond what I want to deal with.

My question is about the observable differences between, for example, an Arri/Zeiss 32mm T2.1 prime lens versus shooting at 32mm on the angenieux Optimo 30-80mm T2.8

Neither lens is fast and one is clearly slower than the other, but beyond that, from the standpoint of the optics, can anyone describe the visible quality difference of the same subject shot at the same focal length on the prime versus the zoom?

on the small screen.....on the big screen?

Thanks in advance

Daniel Gold

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