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Thursday, December 06, 2012

Call Me Crazy: LS Lens Adapter Tube Concept


See this? This is an 80mm lens from my old Hasselblad film camera. It was built 50 years ago. The leaf shutter is built into the lens. It syncs at 1/500th of a second.

My current 80/2.8LS is a PhaseOne leaf-shutter lens. It syncs at 1/1600th. And it would be very possible—perhaps even simple—to manufacture an inexpensive tube to marry a PhaseOne LS lens to a Nikon or Canon DSLR.

Why, and how, inside.
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Why Even Do This?

Without continuing to bang the "why" drum ad nauseum, suffice to say that for every stop you gain on your sync speed (1/500th vs. 1/250th, for instance) your flash effectively becomes twice as powerful vs. the ambient because of the corresponding change in your aperture.

And no, high-speed, focal-plane flash is not the same thing. It's mostly a gimmick that robs you of power very quickly. I am talking about true, high sync speed. Like shooting at 1/1 power on manual at, say, 1/1000th of a second.

The relative power that true high sync speed will give your flashes is almost magic.

But Nikon or Canon will never do this. They are all about the meat of the prosumer bell curve. Give 'em megapixels and pay Ashton Kutcher to hold it and look pretty. Let the sync speeds fall where they may.


How Could This Be Built?

First off, the lenses are already built. And because of the difference between the flange focal distances of 35mm vs medium format, you already have to use a thick adapter ring to mount a medium format lens on a 35mm body:



See that? That's a $75 third-party Mamiya/Phase to Nikon adapter tube. By design, it has to be almost an inch thick. That's plenty of room to house the fairly simple electronics it would take to marry PhaseOne's screaming sharp (Schneider glass) 80mm f/2.8 leaf shutter lens to a pro DSLR.

Yes, the lens is expensive. Two mortgage payments, figure. But the tube itself would be pretty reasonable. And the combo would be worth its weight in gold to, for instance, wedding and portrait shooters who light people outside. And this lens combo would travel with you to subsequent bodies—buy once, use for many, many years.

And you folks at PhaseOne, think of what this one piece of kit could do for you.

One, it would dramatically increase the market size (now pretty niche) for your LS lenses—especially the 80mm model. Two, when any of the LS-Adapter owners made the move to medium format, they would already have at least one Phase/Schneider lens. It would be hard to go Hassy. You'd grow your market again.

And three, the increased sales could very well change the economics of making the lenses themselves, driving the costs down to the benefit of all.


How Would the Tube Work?

It's kind of interesting, really. You are just matching the PhaseOne lens protocols to that of the Canon/Nikon bodies. (Two tube models would be needed.) Can't be that hard—3rd party manufacturers reverse engineer or license the protocols all the time.

Let's follow what would happen as you take a high-sync photo.


The Sync Chain

First off, the shutter that is contained in the lens is the new point of sync. Your flash would sync to a jack on the adapter tube itself. The tube would in turn hard-connect to the camera's sync jack or hot shoe.

The tube would have a shutter dial or button on it: 1/500th - 1/1000th - 1/1600th - and FP. When set to FP, the shutter and sync control would revert to the body and pass through if needed. When the tube was set to the higher speeds, the lens shutter would control the sync.


What Actually Happens When You Press the Button?

You'd want to set the camera itself on a slower shutter speed, as the lens will become the new, higher speed shutter. Let's call it 1/30th, but it does not really matter as the lens is blacked out during the time around that slower shutter speed.

Remembering that the body itself supplies power for the lens' focusing motor and timing signals for the process, follow the bouncing ball. Let's say you want to sync at 1/1000th. Your camera is on 1/30th. You press the shutter.

The first thing the lens normally senses is the signal that stops down the aperture. It will do so here, too, but this signal will also black out the leaf shutter.

Next, your body's focal plane shutter opens, but the lens' shutter is still closed.

The body then sends a sync signal (from the PC jack or hot shoe) when its shutter is fully open. This signal opens, and then syncs, the leaf shutter. After the required delay (depending on where you would need to set the host body shutter in our hypothetical example) the lens shutter would close and the body shutter also closes. Then the lens shutter would reopen, returning your visibility through the viewfinder.

Autofocus signal and power would pass through normally, just as with a third party lens.


A Guy Can Dream, Right?

So, PhaseOne, whaddya say? Will you build us this tube for us? Will you let us have the amazing sync speeds that make our flashes feel like they are on steroids?

Please say yes.

Besides, if you don't do it, some enterprising Chinese company (wink, wink) is going to build a stand-alone 80mm leaf-shutter lens for Nikon (and Canon, nudge, nudge) and maybe even a 35 or 50mm version (wink, nudge) and happily sell them to photogs all over the world at a thousand bucks a pop.


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49 Comments:

Blogger Mike Kelley said...

Oh lord. Please let this happen. The interiors photographer in me is already salivating the the chance to not have to contort my exposure settings like a circus act to get my windows under control.

December 06, 2012 12:16 AM  
Blogger Paul Bohman said...

Way to throw down the gauntlet. One thing I'll note is that there's no reason a manufacturer couldn't accomplish the same thing with the Hasselblad H series of lenses, which have a max sync speed of 1/800. That is plenty fast for pretty much anything, and only a stop behind the PhaseOne leaf shutter lenses. Let's see adapters for both Hasselblad H and PhaseOne!

December 06, 2012 12:46 AM  
Blogger Clement said...

That's a brilliant idea! Let's hope you'll be heard! I'm still pissed at Nikon and Canon for not making faster shutter. The review websites get crazy when a new flash comes up with an extra 1/20th stop, but they're the same telling you that loosing a third of a stop on shutter is no biggie...

December 06, 2012 12:59 AM  
Blogger Sunster said...

Oh Lord indeed, I have three pristine Hasselblad lenses lying around ( well, they are safe and secure in camera case with body ) and was only thinking last week how nice it would be to put it on my Canon 1d MkIV, and to shoot, as you say, with more "power" on my flash, synching at 1/500
Oh stop, I'm dreaming here, was about to say, I can't see it happen, but i'll be optimistic that some one reads your posts and says, heck, let's do it, I'll be one of the first to place an order, as the idea of shooting film and scanning slides/negs, these days does not fit in with my clients budgets and deadlines
:-)

December 06, 2012 1:12 AM  
Blogger Paul S said...

The main reason why it's unlikely to work in the first place, or at of limited value, is that most flashguns will not be able to supply full power at those synch speeds anyway. It would be difficult to get the camera to synch at the peak of the exposure, and since the actual flash exposure would be longer than the shutter exposure you probably be only working at around quater power max....still worth it in some situations, but not as cut and dried as it might seem...

December 06, 2012 2:03 AM  
Blogger James Katt said...

Why not just design a leaf-shutter adapter tube for Canon or Nikon lenses?

This would look like a teleconverter except instead of increasing the focal length of the lens, it contains a leaf-shutter to the Canon and Nikon lens.

It would contain a lens like a teleconverter lens. But rather than increasing the focal length, it would compensate for the added length of the tube. It is a "neutral" teleconverter. Thus, the added tube length won't act as an extension tube (which changes the focusing of the lens for macro photography - which in this case isn't wanted).

Triggering this would be similar to the Medium Format lens adapter discussed in this article.

One can then have 1/500th, 1/1000th or 1/2000th sync speeds on our inexpensive Canon and Nikon lenses! This can be selected via a ring on the tube.

We won't have to wait for Canon or Nikon to give us our fast sync speeds!

This leaf-shutter neutral-teleconverter tube will have a far larger number of potential customers than the Phase-One adapter tube since it would include EVERY Canon and Nikon DSLR user!

Thus, it can be even more profitable for that Chinese company to create! Hint, hint, hint, wink, wink, wink!

>:-D

December 06, 2012 2:14 AM  
Blogger Tomas said...

If there aren't any simplifications made in the description that would stop this from actually working, it seems simple enough for a DIY mod (at least as a proof of concept). Given the effort made on dollys and such within the community, the competence is definitely out there.

December 06, 2012 3:41 AM  
Blogger tug said...

Another way to get high speed sync with a full frame 35mm digital sensor is to buy a Sony RX1. This has a leaf shutter which syncs at 1/4000th at apertures smaller than f/5.6, 1/4000th at apertures smaller than f/4 and 1/2000th otherwise. Considerably cheaper than buying your lovely Phase One lens.

December 06, 2012 3:47 AM  
Blogger Eric Duminil said...

My wish-list would be :

* small body
* full frame
* 12 MPix max
* Great dynamic range
* no autofocus
* no movie mode
* no GPS
* no WiFi
* electronical shutter to sync at all speed
* integrated pocket-wizard
* pop-up flash with CLS
* as cheap as possible

December 06, 2012 5:04 AM  
Blogger PHOTO JUNKY said...

There's a Schneider 150mm 3.5 leaf shutter lens sat on my desk waiting for a Mamiya 645 Pro from the states. The thing is the lens has been a bit of a puzzle and now thanks to your article I have more of a handle on how it works in leaf shutter sync mode. Never seen so many controls and switches in my life, if there's anybody out there with info on how to use it I'd be grateful.

December 06, 2012 5:58 AM  
Blogger Matthew Chase said...

That would be great if there was an adapter like that available!

But on the flip side I've wondered for some time why any camera with live view can't sync at a higher speed? I admit I don't know all the technicalities of it, but with live view the mirror is up, the shutter is open, and the sensor is active, so why can't a bit of software code tell the camera to cycle the sensor on / off at a specific speed to create the exposure? That way it wouldn't matter how large the mirror or shutter is as they wouldn't be in the way in the first place.

December 06, 2012 8:13 AM  
Blogger deBruyn Photography said...

David, with all that winking and nudging one might think you have a nervous system disorder. JK! You're hilarious and this is a great idea!

December 06, 2012 9:45 AM  
Blogger hoover said...

Kickstater is written all over this one!

December 06, 2012 9:49 AM  
Blogger Tom Legrady said...

If you're going to adapt a medium format lens to 35mm sensor, might as well make use of that extra image width and build in some tilt/shift.

December 06, 2012 10:38 AM  
Blogger Mark M. Fredrickson said...

@Matthew Chase: There are two ways to read data off of sensors (that I know of). 1) all the data is copied to a duplicate set of photo cells (effectively doubling the cost of the sensor), 2) reading off the data line-by-line.

The older Nikons (with CCD sensors) that David S. likes for high speed sync use the first. With the switch to CMOS, the second style (a "rolling shutter": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_shutter) has become the common method (e.g. Panasonic G series have this an option in addition to a standard physical curtain). At least for larger sensors. Some small sensor compacts may use a CMOS sensor with a global sensor (e.g. the Canon G9 David has also talked about) -- though I'm not absolutely sure, they might instead use a leaf shutter.

I'm cautiously optimistic that the demands of video users will encourage engineers to develop high speed global electronic shutters, but I'm not holding my breath.

December 06, 2012 11:43 AM  
Blogger larrybenjamin said...

Here is a prototype that uses an external shutter with the camera in bulb mode. Laser triggers would not be needed at weddings.

http://blog.makezine.com/2010/02/03/photo-grandpa-builds-mother-of-all/

December 06, 2012 12:55 PM  
Blogger Deej said...

I agree with @MatthewChase on this. On a digital sensor, why is a shutter needed at all? Pressing the shutter should basically turn on the sensor, record whatever is on it, and turn it off. It could be as fast as the electrons needed to supply the signals. The shutter seems like a carryover from film that I've never really understood a need for digitally.

December 06, 2012 1:32 PM  
Blogger lecycliste said...

James Katt's idea could be extended to Leica M-mount lenses on mirrorless cameras like the Sony NEX and Fuji X-E1.

These cameras have short flange to sensor distances, allowing Leica lenses to focus to infinity. There's enough room in a Leica mount adapter for a leaf shutter, and the camera body's lens contacts are there to sync the leaf shutter.

A used 50mm Summarit or 90mm Elmar are relatively cheap. There are many more used Leica/Leitz lenses out there - they've been made since 1954 in M-mounts and since the 1920s in M-adaptable 39mm thread mounts.

Many of us have a few Leica lenses around, and actually use them on mirrorless cameras.

There could also be a double-cable release or sync cable option between body and adapter for sync with Leica M-bodies. The older film M-bodies have a pokey 1/50 sync speed. This would make them unusable in most daylight flash-fill situations.

December 06, 2012 2:02 PM  
Blogger lecycliste said...

The sequence of events in Live View exposure is this -

- You hit the shutter button.
- The sensor shutter closes.
- The sensor shutter opens for the time you've chosen or that an auto-exposure mode chooses.
- The sensor is exposed to light from the lens.
- The sensor shutter closes.
- The sensor shutter opens again to let you view the scene.

Camera manufacturers don't yet make electronic-shuttered digital cameras, presumably because the mechanical shutter protects the sensor during lens changes.

That's why faster sync speeds aren't possible in Live View.

December 06, 2012 2:08 PM  
Blogger WallowaMountainMan said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

December 06, 2012 2:11 PM  
Blogger lecycliste said...

A Leica lens-to-mirrorless leaf shutter adapter wouldn't require any optics at all. Neither would a dSLR lens-to-mirrorless leaf shutter adapter.

That's a big cost advantage.

Many used Leica lenses like older versions of either the non-ASPH 50mm f/1.4 Summilux and the 50mm f/2 Summicron are still tack-sharp enough at max aperture to please any client. And they're reasonably inexpensive, so they're worth picking up to use with a mirrorless camera. Optically-good used dSLR lenses are even cheaper, and you're likely to have a few lying around. Mirrorless systems have become cheap and capable enough to serve as a second camera.

If you buy a used lens to go with the adapter, the whole thing would cost about one mortgage payment. That assumes you already have a mirrorless camera. If you buy a Sony NEX-series, Samsung NX-series or Fuji X-E1 camera, the added-cost total would still come to just a bit more than one mortgage payment.

December 06, 2012 2:57 PM  
Blogger filipl said...

Matthew, this kind of cameras have been available on the market for a while... http://strobist.blogspot.co.uk/2008/01/control-your-world-with-ultra-high-sync.html

December 06, 2012 3:23 PM  
Blogger Simon said...

And when these guys create this, it would be really cool if they would include tilt/shift in the body of the tube. It's plenty deep enough for that, and now your $75 adapter plus two mortgage payments lens provides not only amazing lighting capabilities, it also replaces a $2000 Nikon tilt-shift lens into the bargain, becoming even more of a bargain...

December 06, 2012 3:32 PM  
Blogger Kevin Halliburton said...

I've been saying for years that a leaf shutter lens on a 35mm body would be the bomb-diggity-bomb baby! I love the way you've laid it out as a real possibility here.

December 06, 2012 4:58 PM  
Blogger Michael Quack - Visual Pursuit said...

I have pretty good success in using Yongnuo YN-622C Transceivers with Canon VDSLRs. 78 Euro the pair. Tried with a Hensel Tria 2400 generator and a 6000 Ws softlight focus head attached. Worked down to 1/8000 sec. No lens shutter hack needed for me, then.

December 06, 2012 5:16 PM  
Blogger David Hobby said...

@Michael-

That is not the same thing. THat is more akin to HS sync WRT to the extreme inefficiency of what light you actually capture.

December 06, 2012 5:57 PM  
Blogger Simon said...

David, you would have made a FORTUNE ifyou had kept to yourself, worked with a few knowledgeable buddies and patented it.

ALOT of what is on this site is BRILLIANT and you could be the next "Gary Fong" of photography....only less gimmikey! ;)

December 06, 2012 6:40 PM  
Blogger Michael Quack - Visual Pursuit said...

David, the flash duration of a Profoto Acute B2 600 for example is 1/1ooo sec for t=0.5, that translates to approx. 1/333 sec for t=0.1 at full power. No matter if you use Hypersync or SuperSync or a Phase One leaf shutter at 1/1600 sec - you never use the full flash.

A Metz 45 or 60 potato masher will burn for 1/300 sec t=0.1.

The only question that will make a difference is if you manage to find the right timing for Hypersync/SuperSync. A leaf shutter will cut off some of the flash as well.

December 06, 2012 9:20 PM  
Blogger Radsgeek said...

I would bet Sony is the only company that would make interchangeable lenses with leaf shutters. It's definitely crossed their minds. In some interview, one of their higher-ups said that they didn't think it would be feasible to make a system where each lens had a leaf shutter but then said something like "but you never know." I hope something like this idea changes their minds.

December 06, 2012 11:51 PM  
Blogger Dominique LACOUTURE said...

Well, if no one told it before me, here is my "better than yours" idea:
what about a screw-on filter based on a liquid crystal layer (think "3D glasses"), that you could screw on any lens, and that would sync with the flash signal of the camera in a quite similar fashion as in your proposal?

Small, efficient, and no need for these bulky medium-format lenses...

December 07, 2012 5:54 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

Dave... I did this the other day just fooling around with a Photogenic studio strobe in my basement. I used an SB-600 to trigger the strobes built in slave and got a 1/3200th sync speed. I couldn't believe my eyes. I even ran it up to 1/8000th and got just a hint of banding on the bottom of the frame. Tell me what you think:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/robmulliganphotography/8244963906/in/photostream

December 07, 2012 9:09 AM  
Blogger Doug McEwen said...

I keep reading posts saying this idea won't work that well because the light duration of strobes is much longer than 1/1000 sec. Maybe that is true for some brands of studio strobes, but to give just two counterexamples:

- A Buff Einstein full-power discharge is t.5 at 1/2000 sec and t.1 at 1/588 sec.
- A Lumopro LP160 speedlight full-power discharge is t.5 at 1/1200 sec and t.1 at 1/450 sec.

Both of the above examples would capture the majority of the light at 1/1000, and nearly all of the light at 1/500. And if you use the strobes at half power for faster recycle times, then the flash durations are even shorter.

These strobe speeds should be achievable with any strobe which uses IGBT technology, which in my humble opinion is the best way to trigger a strobe anyways.

December 07, 2012 10:53 AM  
Blogger Dan Gianotti said...

Well, it looks like Dominique beat me to the punch, but I was thinking (roughly) the same thing -- it seems like a swappable shutter in front of the lens would be easier/cheaper, either as a leaf shutter or as a smart-glass filter. I mean, the shutter technology is obviously there already...

December 07, 2012 12:06 PM  
Blogger Radsgeek said...

The whole point of a leaf shutter is that it's located within the lens, where the light beam is narrow. Sticking it in front of the lens or at the focal plane would require it to move much faster. Even if flash duration is longer than the shutter speed, you should still get most of the flash's power, definitely a lot more than HSS would get you. I saw a post (might have been on Zack Arias's website) a long time ago, where the author was talking about syncing to the tail end of a flash set at full power and how it still got a lot more power than HSS. If anyone has doubts about whether this would work, try it on a little camera like the RX1 or LX3 and watch it sync to 1/2000. I do this all the time with an SB700 set as slave. It can kill the sun when it would barely even show up as fill while shooting Nikon.

December 07, 2012 6:32 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

Actually this doesn't need any electronics if you work like you would with a large format camera. Pentax did this with their 645 film cameras. The camera had a normal focal plane shutter, but they marketed a couple of leaf shutter lenses.

So I figure that you could mount your MF lens to your Nikon with the appropriate adapter. Then using live view focus and set exposure on the leaf shutter and aperture. set the camera to B. Trip the shutter on the camera then trip the shutter on the lens, release the shutter on the camera. Not very elegant for handheld shooting or eratically moving subjects, but would be fine for other purposes.

December 07, 2012 9:13 PM  
Blogger jordan green said...

I want this as much or more than anybody. But one problem nobody can overcome is crop factor. The image circle on a medium format lens is huge. I don't know the specifics. But the crop factor would have to be close to 4x. Making a beatifull 80mm portrait lens a 320mm supper tellephoto. And I'm all torn up about it. Cherish you phase one Mr. Hobby. We will be buying them on eBay for $500 soon enough.

December 08, 2012 11:26 PM  
Blogger Brendan said...

I don't think that 'crop-factor'. will be an issue. If it is an 80mm lens then it is an 80mm lens and will give the same coverage on an FX Nikon (or Canon) as an 80mm lens built for the Nikon or Canon. 85mm would be the closest prime but a zoom set to 80mm would produce the same image size. On an FX (or 35mm film) 80mm is a short telephoto but on a 6 x 7 MF it is a wide-angle roughly equivalent to a 40mm lens on an FX. That extra image circle would just be lost, but it might cause some internal flare if it is bigger than the area the camera is designed to trap inside its blackened mirror chamber. It would also make tilt and shift work well!
I thought that this high-speed sync could be achieved already with a few types of radio triggers? I know that the Ojecoco H550 can do this (to 1/8000)and I think that some pocket wizards can also. They take advantage of the fact that, at high power output, the flash duration is longer than the transit time of the FP shutter slit. By getting the timing right with a delay-line the peak power of the flash is constant as the FP shutter 'slit' passes over the sensor. You get less light energy of course but this would be true for the 'tube' also - with the high-speed leaf shutter effectively sampling just a portion of the flash duration.

December 09, 2012 7:41 PM  
Blogger Drew Gardner said...

Hey David,

Exciting stuff!

Folk seem to like it.

You are onto something.

Warm Regards

Drew

December 10, 2012 4:54 AM  
Blogger j_dot said...

Great idea!

Phase one could also introduce a tiered buying program - buy the lens and adapter and if you buy a body and back within a certain time frame you get x% off. Cause you know those enterprising chinese companies are gonna make their own leaf lenses anyway...

@David
Could you put together a blog post for using the Phase with just speedlights? I know that you have the big guns at your disposal and all but one of the things you were excited about last year was the extra sync speed with the speedlights. Has the last year changed that? Are there difficulties in real world use that you didn't think of when buying? (The first example that comes to my mind is that the DoF on a 645 chip at f/8 is still pretty narrow - so maybe you needed f/11 but couldn't get there even with the extra sync...) Or has it all been peachy?

Thanks!

December 10, 2012 2:44 PM  
Blogger Ken Elliott said...

Interesting concept. Here’s my take on a way to make it fit many more cameras, and only require Phase One to create a single device.

Make the tube a T-mount. The tube would have a port to attach a shutter-release cable. You set the shutter on the tube, and set 2 time delays (TD1, TD2). The tube would need its own shutter release to start the sequence.

1 – press the tube’s shutter release.
2. the lens shutter closes, and the aperture stops down.
3. a signal is sent to the port, causing the camera (via a model-specific cable) to fire.
4. after the set time delay TD1 (allow the camera to lift the mirror and open the shutter) the lens shutter opens.
5. the flash trigger port on the tube fires the flash.
6. the shutter closes, and starts TD2 (allow time for the camera to close the shutter).
7. after TD2, open the shutter and aperture.

The advantage of this is it would work with any camera that can be triggered by a switch, and fits any camera with a T-mount. And Phase One doesn’t have to build it IF they will share the lens interface details. Want to start a Kickstarter project on this?

December 10, 2012 4:03 PM  
Blogger jordan green said...

Medium format lenses do not adapt to smaller formats without a crop factor. I am optimistic come one will adapt some of the off brand lenses we are seeing adapted to cine style lenses made with leaf shutters. However in terms of switching Back and forth between phase one and any kind of 35mm body. Not possible without crop factor. It could however make some awesome macro shots. Maybe a bee frozen mid flight?

December 11, 2012 3:07 AM  
Blogger David Hobby said...

I thin some people are confused about the net effect of a crop factor in this application.

An 80 is an 80 is an 80. Assuming you have lens circle coverage sufficient for your format size, an 80mm len would give you a normal field of view on an MF camera, a wide-angle field on a 4x5 and a short tele (i.e., portrait lens) field of view on a 35mm FF body. On a small chip 35mm body, it would be a linger tele.

On a related note, vertical compression is not a function of focal length. It is a function of how far you have to be away from your subject to contain it—and more important, the relative distances of your subject and the background.

Thus, an 80 MF lens would create a pleasing portrait lens for 35mm FF or small chip. The only difference would be the overspray in the lens circle as this particular 80mm lens is designed to cover medium format.

The extreme issues here would happen if you shot small chip and you needed wide-angle coverage form your hybrid MF LS lens. Possible, but it would get very expensive.

December 11, 2012 4:29 AM  
Blogger mcariss said...

It's not for phaseOne but here's a hassleblad to EOS adapter on Ebay.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Hasselblad-Lens-to-Canon-EOS-Camera-Adapter-Mount-/380095398787?pt=US_Lens_Adapters_Mounts_Tubes&hash=item587f738383

December 11, 2012 3:31 PM  
Blogger michimartini said...

As I understand it this would only work with global shutter. With a normal DSLR this would most probably only capture a narrow horizontal strip of the image.
A camera with a global shutter was recently announced by Sony and is called the F55. But it is designed for cinema and rather pricey. Doing it with a Leica M9, which has a CCD-sensor rather than a CMOS rolling shutter sensor might work though. But that is rather pricey too and not your thing anyway.
Rob's comment is intriguing though, but I'm very skeptical.

December 11, 2012 4:09 PM  
Blogger Ken Elliott said...

David - I contacted Phase One about getting the specs for the lens communication and they have responded. In a nutshell, they say it is not viable to involve themselves. I can send you the email, if you provide an email address.

December 12, 2012 8:41 AM  
Blogger David Hobby said...

Welp, I guess it's down the Chinese then...

December 12, 2012 3:48 PM  
Blogger Christopher J said...

I'm not usually one to throw in my two cents in comments threads, but I will chime in here and say that I would buy such a lens and adapter just in case those companies being winked at and nodded to happen to be paying attention to this.

December 13, 2012 2:34 PM  
Blogger Little Radio said...

Guys/Gals, pls pardon my ignorance (I'm a self-taught photographer who's learned everything by doing, and a little by reading).

I just don't understand the sentence: "for every stop you gain on your sync speed (1/500th vs. 1/250th, for instance) your flash effectively becomes twice as powerful vs. the ambient because of the corresponding change in your aperture."

Where can I read about what this means?

December 14, 2012 10:14 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I'm a little late coming to this as usual but Little Radio: I think the technical aspects have been dealt with fairly well above. I think David was using Pro-Speak but meant that we get more creative options via aperture and ISO while retaining full flash power so long as shutter speed is not shorter than flash duration at full power. If he meant something else there must be some physical law which has so far eluded simple people like us.

December 15, 2012 12:17 PM  

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