Using an inexpensive adapter with the JVC GY-LS300 4KCAM camcorder, Blurton has found new life for his 40-year-old Nikon lenses.
Everything old is new again! My Nikkor N-C Auto 24 F2.8, which was manufactured in 1973, looked as nice as ever, and my 105mm prime was crazy good. I can use my newer Canon lenses with the GY-LS300, too, with a Metabones adapter.
I also purchased a used 300mm prime lens for $85, which gives me up to 960mm in HD or 420mm in 4K. How? With JVC’s unique Prime Zoom feature, which delivers exactly what it says. Utilizing the extra size of the Super 35 sensor, it provides the ability to zoom in with prime lenses ”” a 2.3x maximum zoom for HD or 1.25x for 4K. The exposure holds, the focus holds, the quality of the lens holds.
Last November, I took a trip to Pittsboro, North Carolina to shoot documentary-style HD footage of a horse trainer. Prime Zoom was an absolute godsend. When I’m around untrained horses that can bolt at any time, I want to shoot from a safe distance. I was about 45 feet away when the trainer was working with horses in the arena, but Prime Zoom got me close to the action without losing resolution.
For our five-day shooting schedule, the weather couldn’t have been more pleasant. The grass was still green, leaves were still on the trees, and the skies were mostly clear and sunny. We also shot some footage in the barn, which provided plenty of natural light along with dark backgrounds. Easy shoot, right? The challenge was that arena ”” with the ground covered in sand that reflected sunlight, it was like shooting on a beach. Thankfully, the GY-LS300’s built-in histogram helped me avoid overexposure.
In a studio with a full crew, I can use the camera’s HDMI port to connect a monitor and review images in full color. In the field, however, I prefer to shoot using the JVC Log mode, which allows me to record the signal before it goes through the camera’s internal processing. Shooting in log mode allows me to make creative decisions in post-production.
Much like the old days of film, I like to take my footage and process it. Instead of a darkroom, however, I upload the .MOV files directly to Adobe Premiere Pro CC ”” no proprietary formats and no transcoding with JVC ”” and use the software’s Lumetri color correction. There are plenty of presets available, but it’s also easy to make adjustments and get the exact look I want.