Metabones Speed Boosters and focal length reducing lens adapters from other brands have become very popular over the last few years as more people take to smaller sensor formats like APS-C and Micro Four Thirds for shooting both stills and video. There are a number of them out there now, although Metabones continues to be held in the highest regard. Now, Metabones has announced a new series of seven Speed Booster adapters specifically designed for using various non-Micro Four Thirds lenses with the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K.
Canon has been working on their own focal length reducers. Lens adapters commonly sold under “speedbooster” or similar names, these adapters translate a larger projection circle, like that from a full frame lens, to the smaller sizes needed by APS-C and smaller sensors.
Lens adapters to put Canon EF mount lenses onto M mount bodies are nothing new. Canon’s had one for a while now. But when it comes to speedbooster style adapters, one company’s pretty much had the market sewn up, and that’s Metabones. But Metabones only produces such adapters for Sony, Micro Four Thirds and Fuji crop cameras. At least for now.
A new Japanese patent (2018185393) suggests that Canon will be working on their own, now, though, breathing some new life to their EOS M mount line of cameras – as well as their EF mount lenses as they make the push towards full frame mirrorless.
For the wide aperture lovers, the way to get an f/0.9-35mm lens for $350 has been here for a while (see video at the end of the post). However, did you know why using a 50mm, f/1.2 lens with a speed booster actually gives you an f/0.9, 35mm lens? There is quite a bit of math involved but Jimmi Kai manages to squeeze a pretty understandable version of it into a nine minutes video. (Along with some other great tips and physics nuggets)
The fact that I’m writing this review is the result of someones slip up, a happy accident and unexpected windfall for a mate. The VILTROX NF-E mount Focal Reducer Speed Booster.
Here’s the backstory, a close friend ordered a Viltrox basic adapter to use Nikon Ai lenses on his Sony A6000. We got him a great price on eBay, about $32.00 as I recall, and the adapter promptly arrived almost exactly on the due date. It sat on his bedroom cupboard along with a little Nikon 35-70mm zoom he bought at the same time for several weeks, then a few days ago he finally brought the camera/lens/adapter combo to the coffee shop so I could show him how to shoot using manual focus with his A6000.
A few days ago we featured a new speedbooster adapter from Fotodiox, the Excell+1. The idea behind the booster is that is remaps the image crated by a full frame lens into a smaller sensor, thus both un-cropping the image and gaining a full stop of light.
Now, this is not the first speedbooster that has gone to the market, about one year ago Metabones introduced a similar series of speedboosters, but the pricing on the two products varies significantly. An Excell+1 would set you back about $160 where as a Meatabones adapter will cost between $490-$590.
Videographer Max Yuryev took the two adapters for a ride and the results seem pretty conclusive to me. You can watch the video above and make your mind alone.