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Jan
17

Video: Using a $50 lens on a $12,500 5K RED cinema camera

Filed Under News: Digital Photography Review

YouTuber Potato Jet recently had a ridiculous idea (not out of character...): what would happen if you slapped a super-cheap 50mm photography lens onto an ultra-expensive cinema camera? That's how we ended up with this video, in which he pairs a beautiful 5K RED cinema camera with Yongnuo's 50mm F1.8 knockoff of Canon's already-cheap nifty fifty.

As best we can tell—Potato Jet doesn't reveal what camera he's actually using—the cinema camera in question is the Scarlet-W RED Dragon 5K. That camera body alone retails for $12,500 on the RED store. On the other end of the spectrum, the Yongnuo nifty fifty knockoff retails for under $50, and even if you go for the official Canon version, you can usually find it for around $100 (or $125 brand new without any discounts).

So, can the RED camera redeem what is pretty widely accepted as a lackluster lens? Or does the lens 'ruin' what is otherwise a glorious camera body?

You can watch the video above—starting at around 0:46—to see the sample footage for yourself, but Potato Jet's conclusion is surprisingly positive. Sure, the Yongnuo falls far short of almost any other 50mm F1.8 lens you could adapt, and getting focus with so little focus ring travel was a nightmare, but it turns out RED's ultra-high quality sensor can still capture good quality footage in a variety of challenging situations, even behind such mediocre glass.

So, did we learn anything? No, not really. But if you're like us, you're still curious what that final footage looks like. Go ahead, hit play... we won't tell anyone.

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