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Eclair Cameras: Anamorphics on 16mm

Just a thought about using supplementary anamorphic lenses with 16mm. A lot of low-budget filmmakers on jumping on the Panasonic 24p Mini-DV camcorder because it can record progressive-scan images at a true 24 frames per second. One of its limitations is that it has a CCD sensor with a standard 3:4 (or 1.33:1) aspect ratio. Panasonic offeris a supplementary anamorphic lens for this camera for those who want a 16:9 ratio. I understand that the camera has a 72mm front thread on its built-in lens, the same as on a 12-120mm Angenieux without a series-9 filter adapter (and several others), so it *might* be adaptable to a larger zoom. The front lens cell of the Angenieux rotates to focus, so this might present a problem. The anamorphic lens is an $800 item, so check it out carefully before making the investment. You can check with Century Optics and Optex to see if they make a similar anamorphic adapter for the Panasonic (or for the Canon XL-1/XL-1s, which also takes a 72mm), but these products are not going to be cheap. If your end product is video, you can de-anamorphose in post by various means - one way would be to simply scale it to the appropriate aspect ratio in After Effects.
- Ian Marks

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