Thread: Red Primes or Canon or other cinema lenses

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  1. #1 Red Primes or Canon or other cinema lenses 
    Senior Member AndreasOberg's Avatar
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    Hi everyone,
    I'm considering buying some more Red Primes so just would like to hear some tips of other alternatives.
    We mostly shot documentaries using our canon lenses but it would be nice to be able to use more cinema lenses mainly because of improved focus.
    Currently I have 18, 35 and 300mm Red Primes. My options are:
    - buy a few more primes, 85mm or 50mm and 100mm
    - sell the Red Primes and get a new set of other cinema lenses in similar price range.
    - keep using canon lenses

    The biggest downside with the Red primes I have found is the weight, but if I'm with a bigger team it doesn't matter.
    Any thoughts would be appreciated :)
    /Andreas
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  2. #2  
    Senior Member Owen Rennie's Avatar
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    I recently purchased a set of canon cine primes. Beautiful lenses but to be honest I kinda miss my L series lenses... I shoot mainly doco work too.. Running around like an idiot with one hand on the lens pulling focus and the other controlling aperture with side handle was so easy.. But if I was you I woukdnt sell the red pro primes.. From what I hear there amazing.
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  3. #3  
    Senior Member Tommaso Alvisi's Avatar
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    Canon lenses and an AC using foolcontrol for documentaries ;)
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  4. #4  
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    Get in on the group buy for Optitron 2. Then you will have "proper" focusing for all you L glass
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  5. #5  
    Senior Member AndreasOberg's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips guys. Anyone more has some input on the Primes? I really love focusing with them and having a proper matte box, but yes they do get heavy and I miss the IS from Canon lenses.
    Cheers
    /Andreas
    www.ObergWildlife.com- Natural History Filmmaking
    www.WildlifeRescueMovie.com- Saving the animals of the Rainforest!
    2 x RED DSCM2 8K Helium Movi Pro Gimbal, Inspire 2 X7, OConnor 2560, Canon 50-1000mm
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  6. #6  
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    There are heaps of alternatives coming to market in the last year or two (or coming soon, in the next year or two) which are way cheaper than what has generally come before with PL mount: XEEN / Tokina / SLR Magic / Sony CineAlta / and more.
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member AndreasOberg's Avatar
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    There are heaps of alternatives coming to market in the last year or two (or coming soon, in the next year or two) which are way cheaper than what has generally come before with PL mount: XEEN / Tokina / SLR Magic / Sony CineAlta / and more.
    Worth checking out however usually when I would look at cheaper lenses their image quality isn't quite the level I would want.

    So this is our game plan at the moment
    - Get another Red Prime 85mm
    - Get a Zoom lens. Probably Red Zoom 18-85 2.9.

    Yes the zoom is very heavy but I thought it would mostly stay on the tripod for short movies or commercials when we need cine lenses. Landscape would mostly be canon lenses. I even think I could take the 18-85 hiking since it would be the only lens I would take.
    The 85 would mean we have primes in 18, 35, 85 and 300 so we would have a pretty good range.

    How big is the difference between the zoom and the primes?
    Later down the line maybe get a GLOptics 70-200 or equivalent to get the range 70-200.

    As far as I can see the only downside with the primes is the weight. But to get equivalent quality for less weight the price will be astronomically higher.
    Cheers!
    /Andreas
    www.ObergWildlife.com- Natural History Filmmaking
    www.WildlifeRescueMovie.com- Saving the animals of the Rainforest!
    2 x RED DSCM2 8K Helium Movi Pro Gimbal, Inspire 2 X7, OConnor 2560, Canon 50-1000mm
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  8. #8  
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndreasOberg View Post
    The biggest downside with the Red primes I have found is the weight, but if I'm with a bigger team it doesn't matter.
    Any thoughts would be appreciated :)
    /Andreas
    You can't beat the laws of Physics or Optics ... That big honking piece of glass on the RPP means lots of light and great optics.
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  9. #9  
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    In my experience using proper cine style lenses (Ultra Primes and the like) for doc use really makes little sense. If you want the look of fast primes with nice manual focusing for doc work. converted stills glass is the best bet. If I were in your shoes I would probably try and build a Leica R set, which you could get de-clicked and would also give you zoom options that are invaluable for doc work. Duclos will cine-vise them too, if you want to use a FF.

    Another very interesting (and even more cost effective) option is Zeiss Contax stuff, of which there is a plentiful supply on the second hand market. We shot a really stunning doc last year with them in Africa last year, we had the whole set along with some other stuff in a backpack. So practical.

    Both these options are relatively affordable, optically excellent, super compact and flexible. What's not to like?

    Angus
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  10. #10  
    Senior Member AndreasOberg's Avatar
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    Thanks Angus for the advice!
    I think the cinema lenses is mainly meant to be used for Short Movies or commercials. So more cinematic work. Maybe music videos. For documentaries weight is much more of an issue and then I think I would keep using the Canon lenses. A bit tricky to focus with but works pretty good otherwise.
    I also want to learn how to work more propertly cinematography wise with proper cine gear.
    Does my reasoning sound? :)

    /Andreas
    www.ObergWildlife.com- Natural History Filmmaking
    www.WildlifeRescueMovie.com- Saving the animals of the Rainforest!
    2 x RED DSCM2 8K Helium Movi Pro Gimbal, Inspire 2 X7, OConnor 2560, Canon 50-1000mm
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