The Cheaper Road to a lens with F/1.2
November 15, 2010
Canon 85mm F/1.2L FD Manual Focus Lens
Canon FD mount lenses designed originally for older film cameras are a beautiful option for many video shooters. Not only are they wildly popular with DOF adapters to be used with standard camcorders, you’ll find DSLR bodies such as Panasonic, Sony, Olympus, Nikon, and new Canon DSLR’s adapting these older lenses to get wide apertures on the cheap. The controls are completely manual to set aperture and focus. Many enjoy shooting these older lenses simply because the focus rings work better for pulling focus in video mode.
There’s a bunch of different adapters to mount these FD lenses to just about any camera. For Canon this i’m using one which has an extra piece of Optical glass to correct the image and prevent vignetting at wider angles. For other cameras, i’m not sure if the optical glass would be necessary. If you’ve got an FD lens adapter story to share, post your comments here.
It’s also pretty sharp, but not too sharp and often giving a very vintage feel with your footage. The look from these lenses will definitely give artistic video shooters a bit more of a creative documentary feel with a slightly softer high contrast look. Here’s a good example video http://vimeo.com/3919586 that was posted (now 2 years ago). You can catch groups on both Vimeo and Flickr all dedicated to older FD and FL vintage lens styles. The current EF auto focus 85mm F/1.2 runs for close to $2,000 dollars. Look carefully and you’ll catch an 85mm F/1.2L FD mount (yes L lens) for less than a third of the EF mount price. Of course F/1.2 should provide you with a beautiful image, but it’s not your only option. There are many other other great FD lenses to be adapted including F/1.4, F/1.8, F/2.0 with all ranged from Fisheye Wides to Super Zooms.
So if you’re looking to get more Depth of Field on the cheap with a nostalgic look, check out the many FD and FL lenses available most starting auctions at under $5 dollars.
Canon FD Mount manual focus manual aperture Lenses
Canon FD 200mm F/4 Video Sample http://cheesycam.com/canon-fd-lens-200mm-f4/