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Wide Angle Lens for Panasonic SD10

 
 
Justin
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      05-17-2011, 06:49 AM
I have a Panasonic SD10 with 30.5mm filter threads. I already have a UV
filter to protect the lens - which also has filter threads.
Anyway, I'm looking for a wide angle lens, and I'm on somewhat of a
budget.
I see these 0.45x lenses on eBay for fairly cheap. My question is, will
I get that "fish eye" effect? What is the limit for minimal distortion?

Also, should I get a set of Neutral density filters too?
Polarizer?
 
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Scubajam
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      05-18-2011, 08:14 PM
On May 16, 11:49*pm, Justin <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> I have a Panasonic SD10 with 30.5mm filter threads. *I already have a UV
> filter to protect the lens - which also has filter threads.
> Anyway, I'm looking for a wide angle lens, and I'm on somewhat of a
> budget. *
> I see these 0.45x lenses on eBay for fairly cheap. *My question is, will
> I get that "fish eye" effect? *What is the limit for minimal distortion?
>
> Also, should I get a set of Neutral density filters too?
> Polarizer?


I'm not the expert, but this is my experience:
1) The cheap wide angle lenses don't have fish-eye, but do distort,
esp on the sides. You'll find straight lines, like buildings, lean in
toward the center; a wide horizon curves (unless it's across dead
center of frame, which is poor technique). At least on some; more on
some than others. Not full fish-eye, but some distortion. One of the
primary differences between a $30 lens and a $300 lens.
2) Often these cheaper lenses have vignette effect. That is you will
see part of the lens barrel clip off the corners. You can eliminate
this by zooming in, but then, why get a wide angle if you have to zoom
in and wind up with the equivalent of what you had before installing
the lens? More expensive lenses, exp those by the same camera
manufacturer, are made for your camera and won't have this effect.
Depends a lot on what the widest angle of your camera's native lens
is. If very wide, then more vignette with a cheap WA lens. If not
really wide, then this is not an issue. I have a couple of these
cheaper lenses gathering dust that I won't use because of this issue.
3) Cheaper lenses have less or minimal coatings. This creates more
lens flare and can alter true colors.
4) Cheap glass is USUALLY cheap glass. While not always do you get
what you pay for, in this case, most cheaper wide angle lenses will
have issues you don't want.
5) If you use one of these WA lenses, I would remove the UV and use
just one piece of add-on glass. The more add-on glass, the more
distortion. Moving the WA lens out a 1/4" by putting it on top of the
UV filter will increase vignette effect.
6) A polarizer has it's own uses. I have one, but seldom use it. Go
into a camera store and ask to try one outside in the sunlight. I
find the variable polarizer is best. Decide what type of shots you
are most likely to take, then get equipment for that. While it sounds
like you want to be ready for everything, you can't. You are more
limited by the quality of the camera itself. Are you taking family
and vacation? Surely you aren't trying to get paying gigs using this
camera? The story you tell and how you craft - that's CRAFT, the
final production, even for family and vacation stuff, will make more
difference than a WA lens, or polarizer, etc. As you shoot look for
"B roll" stuff, like signs, close-ups of feet running or walking; get
down for low angle, up for high. Fill the frame with faces from ear
to ear. Think about how you will tell this story as you shoot. Can
you create drama or mystery? What's just a family birthday video can
be made special by cutting in old photos of the person as they grew
up, and asking the question of what does the future hold for them? Do
you have a good video editing program and a fast computer? These
things are much more important than the questions you have asked.
7) Neutral density is up to you. One use is to open the lens
aperature and get less depth of field. Tough with your camera. The
very small sensor will limit you more than aperature. More than
likely, your camera with its 1/6" sensor will have everything in the
picture in focus at all times. By getting back and then zooming in,
and opening the aperature, you might get some depth of field with the
classic cinema "fuzzy background" most serious videographers want.
Usually too much trouble for the amateur taking family or vacation
video. If you want everything in focus, and some do, esp for family
stuff, then why consider neutral density?
8) Panasonic is a good brand, but has a wide range of models and
quality. This is more of an entry level camera with OK images. Great
for family and vacation, not for serious documentary or Indie films.
A wider angle is good for inside rooms, and for scenery, but remember,
50% or more of your shots should be close-up. Even for family video,
you will be noted as being very good if you tell a story with a
beginning, a middle, and an end; use lots of close-ups which draw your
audience emotionally into your production; and KEEP THE CAMERA
STEADY!! I'd get a tripod before a WA lens or other. I like one that
has a monopod built in. I used to shoot all handheld, then started
using tripods, and while I thought I was good before (steady with
elbows on something, holding my breath, etc), the difference is well
worth the hassle. Unless you want a specific effect that emphasizes
handheld (which is becoming more popular in TV), the steady shot is
the sign of the pro. But story trumps all!!
9) Remember that shooting is the fastest and easiest part of video
production. Most of the time is spent editing. Don't think you have
to make the final production with scenes in the same order as shot.
That's why it called NLE. Non Linear Editing. Craft a complete
story. Put in titles and credits. Use music and narration, but
please, never use copyrighted commercial music if you upload to
youtube or other places, or give a copy to others. For a single copy
for use of you and your family when you have purchased the music ...
well, that's up to you. Find a way to get really good sound - the
soundtrack is 70% of what we call video! I don't think your camera
has a mic in jack, and the onboard mic will sound tinny. Consider
buying a separate audio recorder, and get software and a good computer
that will allow you to synch the separate audio with the video, then
delete the onboard soundtrack for what should be the better quality
separate audio.
10) For a while, just shoot and enjoy. Forget the accessories and
paying $$; they won't make enough difference to make a difference.
Instead of wide angle lens, just pan a little bit. Polarizer and
neutral density won't make much difference with the limitations of
this camera. Buy and extra battery instead; and a tripod; and decent
editing software; and blank DVDs. Spend time editing and crafting
good stories your family will enjoy. Beginning, middle, end; craft a
story; close-up; tripod; good sound; editing equipment and skills.
Don't just shoot and show! Create productions. You'll find it's
either in your blood and will spend the hours, or you'll just shoot
and show mediocre stuff they'll watch once, and the camera will be
used less and less. It's in my blood, but then, that's me.
More than anything... Have Fun!!
Hope this helps,
Jim McGauhey
Washington State
 
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David Ruether
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Posts: n/a

 
      05-19-2011, 03:15 PM


"Justin" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:iqt5pi$l4g$(E-Mail Removed):

> I have a Panasonic SD10 with 30.5mm filter threads. I already have a UV
> filter to protect the lens - which also has filter threads.
> Anyway, I'm looking for a wide angle lens, and I'm on somewhat of a
> budget.
> I see these 0.45x lenses on eBay for fairly cheap. My question is, will
> I get that "fish eye" effect? What is the limit for minimal distortion?
>
> Also, should I get a set of Neutral density filters too?
> Polarizer?


Buying a cheap .45X add-on lens converter on eBay is a "shot in the
dark". With VERY few exceptions, the resulting image quality depends
more on the combination of the original camera lens and the particular
converter used with it (I have shelves of cheap WA converters, and
have tried them on numerous camcorders, mostly with poor results).
One converter stands out, though, and that is the Raynox .66X Pro
(note that the actual price is lower when it is in the "cart", about
$120 for 58mm thread version). This means that you can use it with
subsequent camcorders, using different stepping rings to fit the lens
to a camera with larger mounting threads. This converter, as with
most WA converters, is not fully "zoom-through" (it does not perform
well near the tele end). On the plus side, it is sharp, wide on every
camcorder lens I've tried it on (it is .66X, afterall...;-), and it
has remarkably low linear distortion (much lower than any other I've
tried). It is also remarkably light weight, useful with a small and
light camcorder. It is here --
<
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...8mm_0_66x.html
>

Another source is here --
<
http://www.adorama.com/searchsite/de...ox+hd+6600+pro
>

For a stepping ring (these tend to be thin from this source, usually
a good thing...), go here --
<
http://www.adorama.com/SearchSite/De...step-up%20ring
>

Unfortunately, after looking through 10+ pages of rings, I did not
find a *single* ring that would do the job, so it will take two
step-*up* rings, a 30.5mm to a more standard size, such as to a 49mm,
and then a 49mm step-up ring to a 58mm - or I think I saw a 30.5mm
to 52mm ring (if so, you could either get a 52mm->58mm ring, or get
the Raynox converter in 52mm thread size). BTW, the price is the same
at both Adorama and B&H for it, but Adorama has free shipping.
Also BTW, the Raynox has a 72mm front thread, which *may* make it
possible to put a WA shade on it. Additionally BTW, a wide-angle
used at maximum wide makes steady hand-holding easier. Moving in
with a WA also tends to get you better sound.

As for polarizer's, I tend to dislike them (you lose about 1.5 stop
of light through them, the color looks "odd", and with WA the
illumination can be uneven. They can be fun for fall color, and
when shooting into shallow water with fall leaves just below the
surface while rotating the filter, but otherwise.....;-)

Likely you will not need any ND filter...

And, read "Scubajam's" post - he has some good advice...

--DR

 
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Steve King
Guest
Posts: n/a

 
      05-19-2011, 04:52 PM
"David Ruether" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:ir3c7a$h2c$(E-Mail Removed)...
>
>
> "Justin" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:iqt5pi$l4g$(E-Mail Removed):
>
>> I have a Panasonic SD10 with 30.5mm filter threads. I already have a UV
>> filter to protect the lens - which also has filter threads.
>> Anyway, I'm looking for a wide angle lens, and I'm on somewhat of a
>> budget.
>> I see these 0.45x lenses on eBay for fairly cheap. My question is, will
>> I get that "fish eye" effect? What is the limit for minimal distortion?
>>
>> Also, should I get a set of Neutral density filters too?
>> Polarizer?

>
> Buying a cheap .45X add-on lens converter on eBay is a "shot in the
> dark". With VERY few exceptions, the resulting image quality depends
> more on the combination of the original camera lens and the particular
> converter used with it (I have shelves of cheap WA converters, and
> have tried them on numerous camcorders, mostly with poor results).
> One converter stands out, though, and that is the Raynox .66X Pro
> (note that the actual price is lower when it is in the "cart", about
> $120 for 58mm thread version). This means that you can use it with
> subsequent camcorders, using different stepping rings to fit the lens
> to a camera with larger mounting threads. This converter, as with
> most WA converters, is not fully "zoom-through" (it does not perform
> well near the tele end). On the plus side, it is sharp, wide on every
> camcorder lens I've tried it on (it is .66X, afterall...;-), and it
> has remarkably low linear distortion (much lower than any other I've
> tried). It is also remarkably light weight, useful with a small and
> light camcorder. It is here --
> <
> http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...8mm_0_66x.html
> >

> Another source is here --
> <
> http://www.adorama.com/searchsite/de...ox+hd+6600+pro
> >

> For a stepping ring (these tend to be thin from this source, usually
> a good thing...), go here --
> <
> http://www.adorama.com/SearchSite/De...step-up%20ring
> >

> Unfortunately, after looking through 10+ pages of rings, I did not
> find a *single* ring that would do the job, so it will take two
> step-*up* rings, a 30.5mm to a more standard size, such as to a 49mm,
> and then a 49mm step-up ring to a 58mm - or I think I saw a 30.5mm
> to 52mm ring (if so, you could either get a 52mm->58mm ring, or get
> the Raynox converter in 52mm thread size). BTW, the price is the same
> at both Adorama and B&H for it, but Adorama has free shipping.
> Also BTW, the Raynox has a 72mm front thread, which *may* make it
> possible to put a WA shade on it. Additionally BTW, a wide-angle
> used at maximum wide makes steady hand-holding easier. Moving in
> with a WA also tends to get you better sound.
>
> As for polarizer's, I tend to dislike them (you lose about 1.5 stop
> of light through them, the color looks "odd", and with WA the
> illumination can be uneven. They can be fun for fall color, and
> when shooting into shallow water with fall leaves just below the
> surface while rotating the filter, but otherwise.....;-)
>
> Likely you will not need any ND filter...
>
> And, read "Scubajam's" post - he has some good advice...
>
> --DR
>


Ditto on Scubajam's post. However, I believe a circular polarizing filter,
the adjustable kind, is a necessary accesory in my kit. They are very
effective in eliminating reflections from windows, water, automobile
windshields, almost anything that's shiny. Want to get a shot of the driver
of a car through the windshield with the sun behind the camera? Without the
polarizer all you'll see is a big sun reflection. With it the driver is
clearly seen. Want to shoot mountains in the distance? Eliminate the haze
with a circular polarizer. These filters do intensify color saturation.
For me that is an acceptable trade off. For the cost, I can't get along
without them. YMMV.

Steve King


 
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Justin
Guest
Posts: n/a

 
      05-20-2011, 07:04 AM
On 5/19/11 12:52 PM, Steve King wrote:
> "David Ruether"<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:ir3c7a$h2c$(E-Mail Removed)...
>>
>>
>> "Justin"<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
>> news:iqt5pi$l4g$(E-Mail Removed):
>>
>>> I have a Panasonic SD10 with 30.5mm filter threads. I already have a UV
>>> filter to protect the lens - which also has filter threads.
>>> Anyway, I'm looking for a wide angle lens, and I'm on somewhat of a
>>> budget.
>>> I see these 0.45x lenses on eBay for fairly cheap. My question is, will
>>> I get that "fish eye" effect? What is the limit for minimal distortion?
>>>
>>> Also, should I get a set of Neutral density filters too?
>>> Polarizer?

>>
>> Buying a cheap .45X add-on lens converter on eBay is a "shot in the
>> dark". With VERY few exceptions, the resulting image quality depends
>> more on the combination of the original camera lens and the particular
>> converter used with it (I have shelves of cheap WA converters, and
>> have tried them on numerous camcorders, mostly with poor results).
>> One converter stands out, though, and that is the Raynox .66X Pro
>> (note that the actual price is lower when it is in the "cart", about
>> $120 for 58mm thread version). This means that you can use it with
>> subsequent camcorders, using different stepping rings to fit the lens
>> to a camera with larger mounting threads. This converter, as with
>> most WA converters, is not fully "zoom-through" (it does not perform
>> well near the tele end). On the plus side, it is sharp, wide on every
>> camcorder lens I've tried it on (it is .66X, afterall...;-), and it
>> has remarkably low linear distortion (much lower than any other I've
>> tried). It is also remarkably light weight, useful with a small and
>> light camcorder. It is here --
>> <
>> http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...8mm_0_66x.html
>>>

>> Another source is here --
>> <
>> http://www.adorama.com/searchsite/de...ox+hd+6600+pro
>>>

>> For a stepping ring (these tend to be thin from this source, usually
>> a good thing...), go here --
>> <
>> http://www.adorama.com/SearchSite/De...step-up%20ring
>>>

>> Unfortunately, after looking through 10+ pages of rings, I did not
>> find a *single* ring that would do the job, so it will take two
>> step-*up* rings, a 30.5mm to a more standard size, such as to a 49mm,
>> and then a 49mm step-up ring to a 58mm - or I think I saw a 30.5mm
>> to 52mm ring (if so, you could either get a 52mm->58mm ring, or get
>> the Raynox converter in 52mm thread size). BTW, the price is the same
>> at both Adorama and B&H for it, but Adorama has free shipping.
>> Also BTW, the Raynox has a 72mm front thread, which *may* make it
>> possible to put a WA shade on it. Additionally BTW, a wide-angle
>> used at maximum wide makes steady hand-holding easier. Moving in
>> with a WA also tends to get you better sound.
>>
>> As for polarizer's, I tend to dislike them (you lose about 1.5 stop
>> of light through them, the color looks "odd", and with WA the
>> illumination can be uneven. They can be fun for fall color, and
>> when shooting into shallow water with fall leaves just below the
>> surface while rotating the filter, but otherwise.....;-)
>>
>> Likely you will not need any ND filter...
>>
>> And, read "Scubajam's" post - he has some good advice...
>>
>> --DR
>>

>
> Ditto on Scubajam's post. However, I believe a circular polarizing filter,
> the adjustable kind, is a necessary accesory in my kit. They are very
> effective in eliminating reflections from windows, water, automobile
> windshields, almost anything that's shiny. Want to get a shot of the driver
> of a car through the windshield with the sun behind the camera? Without the
> polarizer all you'll see is a big sun reflection. With it the driver is
> clearly seen. Want to shoot mountains in the distance? Eliminate the haze
> with a circular polarizer. These filters do intensify color saturation.
> For me that is an acceptable trade off. For the cost, I can't get along
> without them. YMMV.
>
> Steve King
>
>


Gotcha I just ordered a Sony 37mm 0.6x wide angle.
I'll get a circular polarizer too.
 
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