Three months ago I decided to pre-order Zhongyi Lens Turbo Ver II M4/3 focal reducer which started shipping a month later.
What this adapter does is it lets more light onto the camera sensor and therefore increases the lens’ maximum aperture as well as makes the lenses wider (by factor 0.71). This is especially useful with cameras that have smaller sensors like the Super 16 of Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera. With this reducer, the image gets sharper and we’re able to get that beautiful looking shallow depth of field.
Interestingly enough, there hasn’t been much buzz about this upcoming product online, despite the fact that it only costs $150 and it’s essentially the same product as the famous MFT speed booster by Metabones, which costs $479.
So I was lucky to receive one of the first copies of this focal reducer and decided to film a quick demo. By the time it was uploaded on Vimeo, it was the first test video online.
In 2014, Zhongyi brought out a similar version 2 focal reducer for Sony E mount cameras. Alan Besedin from VintageLensesForVideo uploaded a great comparison video between the expensive Metabones and the cheaper Zhongyi, and the results were very suprising! I was sold and determined to buy the 2nd version of Zhongyi’s focal reducer, which solves the blue dot issue and edge softness of the version 1, as soon as the Micro Four Thirds mount comes out.
I filmed this sample video on Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, the amazing Sigma 18-35 f/1.8 lens, Genustech 72mm variable ND filter (sold out at the moment) and Marumi UV-IR-cut filter.
Shot handheld at ISO 800, 24 fps in Film profile. Edited and stabilized in FCPX, Blackmagic 4K LUT added to the footage.
Are you able to control the aperture of the sigma 18-35 with this version
With the Nikon mount version that I have – yes, absolutely! There are no numbers to indicate the exact F stop on the lens turbo, but you can turn the ring to go from maximum to minimum aperture.
It’s just 2 stops (maximum and minimum) ? if no how many stop it can change ? it works well for lenses like 18-35 that don’t have manual aperture ? thanks
No, it’s all the stops in the Nikon version of this adapter, you can fully control the aperture.
I have heard some of these have trouble fitting with the BMPCC, have you heard anything about that?
Unfortunately your title is misleading. This is by far not the “World’s First…”.
If you take a look at this video, you’ll notice it’s posted back in December 2015, and I believe that person also has some other videos done with Lens Turbo II even before that date.
Your article was posted back in January 2016, so definitely your video is not the World’s first.
I’m afraid you’re wrong, I’m always late with posting on this blog, but the original video was uploaded on my Vimeo channel on November 21st – https://vimeo.com/146510442.
Right after it was published by Zhongyi on their Facebook page as “World’s first test” of the Mark II lens turbo for M4/3.