Nikon 85mm f1.8 lens with Olympus E-PL1 HD Video

Discussion in 'Video to Share' started by Robert Watcher, May 2, 2010.

  1. Robert Watcher

    Robert Watcher Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Just imagine - - - everyone raves about the ultra expensive 200mm f2 as it is used on Canon HDSLR cameras, with a video quality that provides that "film look" which results from slivers of focus.

    That is exactly what I was anticipating when I purchased a Nikon to micro 4/3 adapter from Hong Kong last week. A Nikon 85mm f1.8 (which my friend owns), effectively becomes a 170mm f1.8 lens on my Olympus E-PL1 - - - not too far off of 200mm f2 specs if you ask me.

    I received my Nikon to micro 4/3 adapter from Hong Kong and so had to race over to my buddies house armed with my Olympus E-PL1, to see how his Nikon 85mm f1.8 worked and how effective it would be for providing slivers of focus - when shooting in HD movie mode (720p). I can say that it was a thrilling experience.

    For those who presume that the 4/3 format cannot provide minimal depth of field - think again. For those who presume that the 4/3 format cannot provide great IQ (Image Quality) - think again. For those who presume that the inferior 720p HD video of the micro 4/3 Pen cameras is of little value - think again. All three of those things were spectacular and suit my current needs completely.

    Both the 14-42mm Olympus kit lens and the Nikon 85mm f1.8 provide very sharp subjects in HD video mode. Viewing the E-PL1 footage on a 50 some odd inch Wide Screen optimized for 720p, by using an HDMI cable direct from camera, was awesome.

    I am only providing a snippet of the Nikon lens in use where we were playing with the shallow DOF and racking the focus between my face and my arm - - - a distance of around 3 feet. With the first clip, I was just swaying back and forth a foot or so with my body to see the effect of the focus front to back. ISO was 640. The second clip shot at 1250 ISO was with me standing still and the focus ring being moved for focus.

    [ame="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dVGLCktCUZI"]YouTube - Nikon 85mm f1.8 lens with Olympus E-PL1 HD Video[/ame]


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    BE SURE TO NOTICE THE COOL ITOUCH "Clapper" APP to start the video off


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  2. Bokeh Diem

    Bokeh Diem Mu-43 Top Veteran

    655
    Mar 14, 2010
    Toronto
    From what I can see, an I am not videographer at all, all the basics are there in mu-43 for some old fashioned market niche development.

    I know that some pros choose full frame for more serious work, but keep the mu-43's around anyway while shooting. They are enamoured, and I bet, are looking for ways to incorporate the format into their daily regimen because 1./ it's light and affordable, 2./ it's valuable considering its ability to incorporate legacy glass and 3./ it's inexpensive relative to IQ.

    Ontario, eh?

    Bokeh
     
  3. Robert Watcher

    Robert Watcher Mu-43 Top Veteran

    A lot of what I have been doing so far with this camera, is getting a feel for the workings of it and also testing with different looks and scenarios and processing - for upcoming serious video projects.

    My sons are musicians and my youngest is also a song writer. He just sent his latest song (he produces his songs on his Mac in his home studio) through to me a couple of weeks ago - and now I am GAME to produce the video for it using my E-PL1. Hoping to get at it starting in the next few weeks (or sooner). The use will be simply for distribution to his loyal followers and to post on Youtube I`m sure - - - so the quality I am seeing from the 720p widescreen should be most satisfactory.

    The film like qualities that I have been achieving with the E-PL1 video with my testing, is really exiting and something that I have never been able to produce with even semi professional video (shallow DOF and clean high ISO) - and the options of creating whatever feel that I want by manipulating the video clips in Photoshop CS4 Extended, is beyond awesome.

    This morning I put together the rough story board containing 25 scenes for the 4 and a half minute long song. It is made up of simple drawings on paper and a few descriptive notes. I`m heading to Ryans place tonight to go over the story board, refine and add some of his ideas where they fit in. Even though it takes a lot of discipline to work out a story board (which I didn`t really want to do initially) - it is amazing how valauble it is to a project - - - and also the way that you can work through the complete video in your head and envision how everything will come out. Also it makes it so easy to shoot scenes and sequences out of order knowing exactly what will go where in the final compilation of clips.

    Being that almost all of the shooting will be done in his home, I have also decided to take my E-PL1 with me to shoot stills of each scene of the Story Board - just to make sure that the ideas will work in practice. I may take a video clip or 2 also for testing - - - but final lighting and scene setting will be done when we start shooting the final video in a controlled environment.

    I will likely shoot a fair bit with the kit lens - as well as the Nikkor 85mm lens. It`s nice to have something specific to work on instead of just playing and testing. We are both very excited to get at the project and get it completed as quickly as possible.

    Page 1 of Story board

    12729159594099_storyboard.
     
  4. cosinaphile

    cosinaphile Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 26, 2009
    new york city
    i guess you do have fast glass lying around , ive got the 85 1.8 Nikon too
     
  5. Robert Watcher

    Robert Watcher Mu-43 Top Veteran

    We decided to start some of the shooting tonight for the video - finishing up 3 of the 25 basic scenes. For lighting I used the modeling lights from 2 of my studio flashes. Ryan lip synced to a copy of his song playing on his iPhone for a perfect match when the clips were laid over the finished song in my Video Editing software.

    So we are on our way. Here are a few of the out takes and extra B-Roll clips from the scenes that we took tonight in his living room. Footage shot with Olympus 14-42 Kit Lens - Manual Focus and 640 ISO:

    YouTube - test.mp4


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  6. goldenlight

    goldenlight Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 30, 2010
    Essex
    John
    A facinating project, Rob, and a great test of the video capabilities of the :43: format. I'm looking forward to seeing how this one progresses.
     
  7. daanh

    daanh Mu-43 Regular

    43
    Jul 25, 2010
    Hi! Very interesting! I assume that you have to focus manually? Do you use the electronic viewfinder for that? It's a pity that you can't magnify the screen in video mode to focus....

    Daan