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Derek Van Gorder

Super fast SLR lenses-- where to look for them?

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Hello,

 

I'm shooting a feature film on HDSLRs in Utah through the end of August. The director has made an unusual request to shoot a short scene by the actual light of the full moon. I suspect this may be possible only with the 1D Mk IV and super-fast lenses, f/1.0 or faster (even then I assume I will need to employ some noise-reduction in post). Though I've found information about such lenses online (a Canon 50mm 1.0, a TV Nikkor 35mm f/0.9), they seem quite rare and so far the rental houses in Salt Lake City have no idea where to find them.

 

What's my best bet? Is there some sort of specialist rental service that would ship such a lens to Utah? Or will I have to hope to find a photographer in the area who would be willing to lend the lens for a shoot? Any advice welcome. Unfortunately, I suspect buying the lens would be prohibitively expensive for the shoot.

 

Ultimately my best option might be to shoot at dusk or day-for-night, but I would like to first exhaust all possibilities.

 

Thanks.

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I'm not sure about a F1.0 or a F.9 (neither of which may be a T1.0 or a T.9!), but i've seen some F1.2s out on BH sometimes, used, which you can buy. In truth, though, I don't know if you'll get enough light, even with a F.9 to expose to a full moon. Why not try a shoot with a 1/50th shutter WFO and then effect shutter speed to get good exposure and work out the shooting stop you need from there. For example, 1/50th @1.4 too dark, 1/25th @1.4 would correspond to F1, 1/12 (and 1/2) would be F.7 etc...

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That's quite a challenge...

 

My lightmeter only goes down to 0.1 footcandle, and at that it give's me 0.7 1/3 at 180 degrees shutter and 6400 iso.

 

The general consensus seems to be that the light of the full moon is 0.02 footcandles max. I think you may just be able to do it but you'll have to push the footage hard, and it's bound to be more than a little grainy. I'd like to see it if you do do it.

 

Oh, and here's the lens for you. Leica noctilux 50mm 0.95 - drool

 

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0809/08091505leica_50mm_f0_95.asp

 

Only 10 grand...

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I'm shooting a feature film on HDSLRs in Utah through the end of August. The director has made an unusual request to shoot a short scene by the actual light of the full moon. I suspect this may be possible only with the 1D Mk IV and super-fast lenses, f/1.0 or faster (even then I assume I will need to employ some noise-reduction in post). Though I've found information about such lenses online (a Canon 50mm 1.0, a TV Nikkor 35mm f/0.9), they seem quite rare and so far the rental houses in Salt Lake City have no idea where to find them.

 

The SLC rental houses don't have Internet connections? ;)

 

http://www.LensRentals.com has both the Canon 50mm f1.0L and the f1.2L in their rental stock. They advise prebooking either one.

 

003888813387.jpg

 

http://www.lensrentals.com/rent/canon-50mm-f1.0-l/for-canon

 

628668385995.jpg

 

http://www.lensrentals.com/rent/canon-50mm-f1.2-l/for-canon

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Moonlight is about 19 stops fainter than sunlight. That's a factor of nearly half a million. Short of an image intensifier you have no chance of getting anything close to a normal looking exposure.

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Moonlight is about 19 stops fainter than sunlight. That's a factor of nearly half a million. Short of an image intensifier you have no chance of getting anything close to a normal looking exposure.

but does he want normal. the example photo that brian posted, while technically cool and impressive, is making moonlight into something it is not, daylight or ninety nine percent of the way there. So what is the desired effect? Night for day or night for night?

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but does he want normal. the example photo that brian posted, while technically cool and impressive, is making moonlight into something it is not, daylight or ninety nine percent of the way there. So what is the desired effect? Night for day or night for night?

 

 

That's the decision they'll have to make, although I suspect they won't be shooting at 1/48th of second even if they want a night effect. They'd need be careful or it could look like day for night with the moon acting like the sun. Some tests would in order to see if the reality matches what the director has in his head.

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I helped on a 5D shoot once where they rented a Canon F 1.0 lens. They ended up using it for one shot. It was only capable of focusing with its internal motor. There was no way to pull focus manually, and it was hard to get it to focus on precicely the point they wanted using the auto focus.

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I helped on a 5D shoot once where they rented a Canon F 1.0 lens. They ended up using it for one shot. It was only capable of focusing with its internal motor. There was no way to pull focus manually, and it was hard to get it to focus on precicely the point they wanted using the auto focus.

 

That is the point I was going to make: Good luck focusing on a 6 perf format camera using a F1.0 aperture!

 

That director must be out of his mind, but then, he is a "HDSLR director." :lol:

 

Seriously now, the best way to do this is: get the F 1.0 lens, shoot a test. If all parties agree they can live with the image and processes involved, fine. Otherwise, you all can go looking for the fabled f.7 lenses used on Barry Lyndon by Kubrik, which may or may not cover the 6 perf format. Nasa may still have a few floating around (no pun intended). Or the director can give up his pipe dreams, settle for something else or get creative with it. Or, maybe, just maybe, get proper light fixtures to achieve the desired effect.

 

Totally reminds me of the "with (HDSLRs) you don't need lights" bit on the producer vs cinematographer xtranormal video clip, BTW.

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