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John Young

Cheap Anamorphic Lenses?

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I was prusing ebay today, and I discovered something I have known for a long time: Prices are out of control.


I'm still looking for a solution to shoot 2x Anamorphic on my CP-16r. Round front, square front, rear lens adapter... I really don't care WHAT the format is, I'm not paying $6000 for a 60 year old lens of questionable quality from Czech Republic. Not happening.

Further more, I'm not actually going to pay $6000 for the same lens from a reputable dealer ANYWHERE.


An example of what I mean:


Isco Iscorama 50mm f 2.8 anamorphic lens for Nikon $3999 (NYC)

ISCORAMA by ISCO 50mm f2.8 Anamorphic Lens NIKON Mount $293.88 (NYC)


The same EXACT LENS in the SAME CITY from two different sellers. Guess who I'm not going to buy from.



Now I understand that there are idiots everywhere that will pay for poor quality lenses for their 5D and RED cameras because to them they are cheap, and I suppose all that is relative. I also understand that this has been going on for a long time, but that (above) is the largest gap in price for the EXACT SAME item I have ever seen).


Does any one know where I can build an anamorphic setup for my CP without spending stupid money?

If it's not possible, then let me know so I can stop looking, and I'll just do the best I can with a cropped image. I still will not conform to the 1.78 world.

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Dude, for 16mm, I'd look at an Old Delft Vistascope prism 2X anamorphic lens adapter. they're cheap and work well but are a bit of a pain in the ass, BUT for what they cost, it's worth the extra trouble.








I bought this one for almost nothing, less than $100 bucks and can use it on my Konvas Lomo OCT-18 mount lenses which are about the same physical size as many 16mm lenses for most cameras. (I have a small set of 2 piece Lomo anamorphics but only in 35, 60 and 75mm so the Old Delft adapter works on the 28 and 135mm although I haven't tried it on the 300mm)There are other 16mm anamorphic adapters out there as well, Sankor makes one as does Iscomorphotiscomorphot, Elmo, Kowa and others. Check Ebay. This may NOT help, but it is an alternative to ridicules prices caused by digital guys buying up all the good film lenses. B)

Edited by James Steven Beverly

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John, "out of control" describes it accurately. Many old projection lenses sold for DSLR use - what a cheat! I wondered about the Totalvision lens set which is very nice, but more than $6000? Come on! I wonder where the anamorphic bug that bit those eBay sellers came from. Especially the Iscorama prices are a joke.


For your CP-16, I recommend either a Kowa 8Z (with a certain limitation on wide angle shooting), but you have to construct a decent support for it. Now and then FOTON-A adapters turn up on eBay, with or without the 37-140mm spherical zoom ($700-800 for both ar reasonable). You should find a front anamorphic FOTON-A for about $300-350, and it is a great piece of glass that will cover more wide angle than every other adapter I know.

Russian anamorphic adapters for 50+80mm spherical combination lenses or square front Lomos (with damaged irises or fungus in the spherical part) can be found often at reasonable prices.




Right now, there is a nice Kowa lens on eBay:


auction link


If you want to spend more money, get the real thing, a vintage B&L camera attachment like this one:


B & L cam att.


As for the price...I got mine for less than $400 (without the nice box, I have to admit) before the craze started.

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Yes, Christian, I recently discovered the FOTON-A and now I NEED one.

So that is my goal, to wait until I can find that specific piece of glass.

I hope I can attach it to my Angie 10-150mm that came standard on most CP's,

but I'm not totally against the idea of using the 37-140zoom.

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I had a similar interest a few months ago for a anamorphic lens that would work with an Angenieux 12-120mm. There are cheap anamorphic's out there, search ebay for anamorphic, search only the camera category and arrange by price. I won a massive russian anamorphic lens this way, it was $40 with shipping. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuI_t8c8wA8, this was an extremely rough test of taping the glass onto a filter holder and then onto a sony hdv camera, if you watch the corners it moves a bit. The glass is massive, it probably weighs 10 pounds. Because this lens is so large, I have to zoom in quite far to cover the corners. I do not believe I could use this on a primary camera during any sort of shoot because of the limitations it presents, this is going to be the case with any projection glass I believe, the close focus on most of these lens is very far, some solve this with close up filters, but it's not a great method for fast shooting.


However, it seems that the sudden interest in anamorphic lens from the DSLR cameras has boosted the price of most useable shooting anamorphic glass on ebay. I don't know if this will stay this way or the prices will drop to more reasonable prices.


Have you considered cropping? After seeing The Wrestler I became a believer in cropping 16mm.

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