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Film Student Question: weird lenses

CamelMan
Apprentice
I have a Canon 7d that's a few years old. I've used it both for photography and film as I've been studying. Recently my dad found his father's old canon film camera, I think the Mark IV, 50s, with a bunch of lenses which I think are m39 serenars, which means they wont be appliable to my 7d. My question is if I get
a mirrorless with FHD or even 4k capabilities, will I be able to shoot video on it using those lenses my dad found?
7 REPLIES 7

kvbarkley
VIP

You have to look and see if you can find an adapter. If they are truly m-39:

google m39 to EF-M adapter.

CamelMan
Apprentice
Right I'm aware of that, but if I had a mirrorless and a adapter would I still be able to film on those? Or would it turn out to be a expensive failed experiment?

Both.

CamelMan
Apprentice
How do you mean?


@CamelMan wrote:
How do you mean?

Some old lenses can be made to work on some modern digital cameras. But it's a lot of work, requires adapters that can be expensive or hard to find, and often produces unsatisfactory results. Even the cheapest modern lenses tend to perform better on modern cameras than old lenses do. I don't fully understand the physics involved, but some of it has to do with the angle at which light intersects the focal plane. Digital sensors are pickier than film was, and modern lenses are designed to accommodate that fact.

 

We get questions all the time from people who want to save a buck or two by re-using old lenses. And some people who are knowledgeable enough try to tell them how to do it. But rarely do we hear from someone who has tried it and still thinks it was a great idea.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA


@RobertTheFat wrote:

@CamelMan wrote:
How do you mean?

Some old lenses can be made to work on some modern digital cameras. But it's a lot of work, requires adapters that can be expensive or hard to find, and often produces unsatisfactory results. Even the cheapest modern lenses tend to perform better on modern cameras than old lenses do. I don't fully understand the physics involved, but some of it has to do with the angle at which light intersects the focal plane. Digital sensors are pickier than film was, and modern lenses are designed to accommodate that fact.

 

We get questions all the time from people who want to save a buck or two by re-using old lenses. And some people who are knowledgeable enough try to tell them how to do it. But rarely do we hear from someone who has tried it and still thinks it was a great idea.


Today's "digital" lenses have more coatings on them to reduce glare and reflections compared to yesteryear's "film" lenses.  Digital image sensors can reflect light that hit their surfaces back up into the lens, which in turn can get reflected back down onto the image sensor, creating a loop.  This is why many older lenses designed for film cameras seem so prone to fogging and other types of light distortion.  

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"The right mouse button is your friend."

Like Robert said. If you just want the conceit of using your dads lenses to make a film - not matter the outcome - you can do that. IF you really want a good tool for cinematography you should look elsewhere.

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