Wide angle shots

gritstone

Standard Member
Maybe I've spent too long with wide angle digital still camera's, I often use 10-22mm SLR lenses in my photography.

Field of view (focal length) doesn't seem to be a high priority with camcorder reviewers/retailers etc. It just doesn't feature in reviews, sales literature, spec sheets etc.

Also, it seems quite hard to find field of view details for a specific camcorder.
You can find the max optical zoom details easily enough, but I want a wide angle view, and max field of view seems to be about 40mm (SLR equ.), which is definitely NOT wide angle. I'm struggling with in-door group shots (and some outdoor group shots), and sweeping landscape zoom shots.

So, why don't manufactures make wide angle camcorders?
And how do YOU manage this problem?...
 

rhubarbe

Banned
Unfortunately, 99% of punters want huge zooms, goodness knows why. Probably because the Gee Whiz marketing speak makes them think they need 25x optical and 700x totally useless digital zoom.

As somebody who has a newly acquired digital camera with a seemingly unimpressive 24-76mm zoom (just about the most useful digicam I have ever owned), and rather shaky hands, I can sympathise with your plight.

www.camcorderinfo.com sometimes give field of view figures in their review of camcorders, but 4:3 all work out at 43° ish and 16:9 (and HD) camcorders seem to peak at 52°.

The only thing you can do it to fit a wide angle converter (or a zoom converter if Mare Tranquilium is more your bag).
 

redsox_mark

Novice Member
You are correct that it doesn't feature in sales literature etc, but generally I've found it is in the spec sheets. Certainly Sony does, they list both the absolute focal distance, and a 35mm equivelent. E.g for my model (Sony HC1):

f (Focal Distance) (mm) 5.1-51
f (35mm conversion): Camera mode (mm) 41-480

I agree that the don't tend to go very wide angle; you are correct that the max tends to be around 40mm (35mm conversion). As to why, I'm really not sure.

The only way around it (apart from getting further away from the subject) is to buy a wide angle converter. This is something on my own wishlist.

(Edit - posted at same time as Rhubarbe)
 

jetinder

Novice Member
The beauti of SLR cameras (35mm film or Digital) is flexibility of using different lenses and unlike any camcorder the pro spec SLRs Canon EOS 3, EOS 1, EOS 1DSII and EOS1DSIII have a much much better auto focus systems.

Apart from price dont know why they dont make camcorders which can take SLR lenses.

I use a 24-105mm zoom, would like a 15-24mm wide angle zoom but the decent ones cost stupid money and because I use a 35mm film camera not many lenses for these are being made now :(
 

jetinder

Novice Member
Yebbut you can pick 'em up dirt cheap on eBay, jetinder.
Will need to go on ebay to see if i can get a cheap wide angle lens for my EOS 3 SLR.

I know people are switching to digital SLRs but a digital version of the EOS 3 which EOS 1DS III will cost me £3000, i aint got the much money to spend on a camera yet.
 

senu

Distinguished Member
The beauti of SLR cameras (35mm film or Digital) is flexibility of using different lenses and unlike any camcorder the pro spec SLRs Canon EOS 3, EOS 1, EOS 1DSII and EOS1DSIII have a much much better auto focus systems.
You refer to consumer Camcorders though, The Semi Pro Canon XL1 and XL2 as well as thier HD/HDV counterparts ( As well as Sony equivalents) take interchangable lenses and have quite impressive AF systems
Apart from price don't know why they don't make camcorders which can take SLR lenses.
You've got it ..Price:cool: Camcorders have traditionally been costlier than stllls ( film or digital) anyway .
To be fair though. Camcorders do have a harder job to do, focusing accurately on moving objects and rapidly changing exposure and white balance as well as getting audio acceptable. In this way a direct comparison is probably unfair
At any rate if the camcorders cost more most casual "punters" will simply resort to using thier phones!
Given the cost of the EOS 1Ds MkIII you've quoted, I shudder to think how much a camcorder equivalent would cost:eek:!
 

gritstone

Standard Member

redsox_mark

Novice Member
I don't know that brand, but be careful, if you add a cheap poor quality adapter it will drag down your video quality. It doesn't have to be a Canon adapter, but I would shop around and make sure you get a decent quality one.
 

rhubarbe

Banned
I'd say be careful, too, but for slightly different reasons. Normally if you buy something like that from eBay and don't like it you can punt it straight back out again and with luck maybe even make a small profit. This seller has 82 of the things so that is going to ensure you can't punt it back out at anything other than a loss until he shifts his stock.
 

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