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Eclair ACL Bellows vs. Hard Shade
Brandt had asked for opinions regarding a hard sunshade vs. collapsible
bellows on a matte box, so here's my 2 cents.
Either one is going to do basically the same job. Control lens flare and
give a support system to filters, accessories, et al. Personally I think
it comes down to fashion more than anything else. We are used to seeing
the hard shades on modern "professional" set ups and when we think of
bellows we think of the old Arri "S" bellows and old cameras in general.
Don't get me wrong the Chrosziel and Arri matte boxes are nice (they
should be for what they cost) and I'm sure in a rental environment the
composite hard shades are gonna hold up better than a bellows but the
most apparent problem I see with the hard shade is that it has to be cut
so shallow in order to accomodate wide lenses that you have problems
with lens flare on every lens, hence the eyebrow. I'm not an AC so if
someone out there is, they might have something else to say about this.
The reason I'm going with a bellows shade is, like a lot of low budget
shooters I have a spectrum of old lenses. Schneiders, Angenieuxs,
Switars, Cookes, Nikkors, you name it, and a bellows lets me fine tune
the area of coverage. If I get some vignetting I pull the shade back a
bit and I'm good to go. If I had a matched set of Zeiss Superspeeds then
yeah an Arri MB-14 or 16 or whatever it's called would be great. It's
built to complement those lenses but it ain't really much good for my
old Angie 10mm retro focus.
Whew! Glad to get that off my chest. I really need to get out more.
Marc had mentioned a DIY video tap. I seem to recall Robert Latimer just
sold a very interesting coupling that allowed one to mate a standard
cctv camera to the ACL eyepiece. It's the only one I've ever seen but it
was a splendid idea. Maybe if Robert catches this thread he can fill us
in on the details and where he got it.
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