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CCTV lenses for V1

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#1 PatrickO


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Posted 09 August 2012 - 12:23

There is a certain allure of CCTV lenses for the Nikon V1. They are small, the apertures are much faster than those provided by the kit lens, some are much wider (4mm or even less) and they cost less than a nice dinner.

This C-mount 25mm f/1.14 CCTV lens cost me £19.99, including an adapter for the V1.

It's metal construction is very solid, the lenses are coated front and back, the six aperture blades are rounded and do not have click stops, the adapter is metal and reasonably anodised, and the lens comes with a 'macro' adapter and front and rear caps. Focus and aperture actions are quite smooth. The FOV approximates that of a 67mm lens on FX.

Optical performance is mediocre. When wide open there is an odd spherical bokeh, edges are soft and a little CA. Stop down to f/2.8 and things get much better. Infinity focus is possible, but not great with the edges soft. The purely manual adaptor lets me select long exposure - the FT1 limits you to 1.333s unless you tape over the electrical contacts.

The long throw of the focus and aperture are more accurate than the short throw of many modern AF lenses. The lack of focus confirmation and lower optical quality means that your eyesight had better be good and even then it can be hard to find any sharp edges - especially when wide open.

The effect is however close to what I was looking for for video - especially when grainy and monochrome.

For this amount of money it is a real bargain. Because these things work with so many mirrorless cameras, one can already see the price of C-mount lenses climbing on eBay, just like Nikon AI lenses about 6 years ago.

Purchased here: http://www.ebay.co.u...984.m1497.l2649

v1 and 25mm.jpg

v1 25mm 1.jpg

v1 25mm 2.jpg

v1 25mm 3.jpg

#2 Andrea B.

Andrea B.

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Posted 22 August 2012 - 19:35

Patrick, I've seem some very interesting work done with this kind of lens which makes use of that spherical swirl around the center.

I have a question: is the C-mount of this CCTV lens the same as the C-mount in Cinema lenses? I would assume there is only one C-mount, but I just want to be sure by asking. "-) I haven't yet acquired an interesting C-mount lens, but I've been looking.

Andrea B.

#3 gerhard2006


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Posted 23 August 2012 - 05:41

Hey Patrick, thanks for posting about extra lenses for the V1. That's the one thing thats holding me back from buying the V1. It's nice to know that there is other alturnatives. Canon also made some fast glass for the c-mount. I just saw a 25-100 f 1.8 lens for sale on e-Bay. There doesn't seem to be any vignetting. So obviously the image circle is large enough. Regards, Gerry

#4 PatrickO


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Posted 23 August 2012 - 08:42

Andrea: I think the mounts are the same C mount. There are quite a few online examples of images taken with mirrorless cameras and cine lenses, and a lot of adapters advertised for lenses like Fuji, Bolex and Kern. Things to bear in mind are the image circle can vary (1", 2/3", 1/2", 16mm and 1/3") and lack of infinity focus (especially with the CS mount variant).

Gerhard, regarding vignetting with this specific lens, I have attached an example taken nearly wide open and set to infinity. It has a 1" image circle, but that does mean the edges are very poor in quality. The 6mm lens in another post has a 1/3" image circle and you can actually see the barrel. In contrast the Nikkor 35mm f1.4 AI-s has an image circle of approximately 50mm, which comfortably exceeds the FX format.


Edited by PatrickO, 23 August 2012 - 08:43 .

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