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Thread: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

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    Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    I came across this recently and wondered whether anyone has tried, or using etc this finder. I'm pretty happy with manual focus now, but there is always the lingering doubt that I may be missing something excellent.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Jeff,

    I just bought a Zacuto 3x Z-Finder to use with my D810. First impressions are well constructed, excellent optical quality, moderately heavy, fits LCD size. I plan to use it by manually holding it against the LCD (no mounting frame, etc.) when the camera is tripod mounted and I'm using a manual focus lens. Here's a post on Lloyd's site that I found interesting.

    Joe
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Joe,

    Many thanks. I've just checked out Lloyd's review. He answered the L bracket question too. I'm not sure that I can live with a viewer that isn't attached. What do you do with it when you aren't using it? I also wonder about the D800. As I understand it, the D810 has a much better LCD. I'll try to find one and give it a try.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
    www.jeff-grant.com

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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Jeff,

    Before the Z-Finder, I have used the Hoodman Hoodloupe with the D800e and it works well using the same principle. An attached viewer prevents you from using the camera's viewfinder when attached, something I can't live with. Holding it up the the LCD when I need it doesn't pose a problem (for me). The D810's LCD is brighter and clearer than that of the D800/D800e. It isn't Retina quality, but it's very good. I use either accessory to eliminate glare when reviewing or shooting, and to nail focus when using MF lenses. YMMV.

    Joe
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Thanks Joe. I'll take a look at it. It's great to get feedback from a real user. It looks like I might have to get used to it not being on all the time.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
    www.jeff-grant.com

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    I have the Pro 3X finder permanently attached to my 800e. This is a set up that works for me and even allows hand holding and perfect focus with manual lenses. Couldn't recommend it more......

    Victor

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Thanks Victor.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
    www.jeff-grant.com

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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Quote Originally Posted by vjbelle View Post
    I have the Pro 3X finder permanently attached to my 800e. This is a set up that works for me and even allows hand holding and perfect focus with manual lenses. Couldn't recommend it more......

    Victor
    Victor, I'm interested in how you have attached the Z-Finder to the D800e. Do you use the Zacuto supplied hardware or a DIY method?

    Joe
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Joe,

    I used the Zacuto hardware along with a universal Kirk L plate (Z-Finder 3.2" Mounting Frame). I attached a small RRS plate to the bottom of the frame assembly and that mounts to the Kirk L plate. It really does work out well for me as I'm so used to tripod work. On my last trip to Spain I was able to hand hold - when I had to - and focus with manual lenses easily.

    Victor
    Last edited by vjbelle; 22nd September 2014 at 22:39.

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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Thanks Victor. That sounds like quite an assembly. I'd appreciate seeing a photo of the what you've created. At the moment, I just hold the Z-Finder over the LCD to focus when tripod mounted.

    Joe
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Holding the finder was a real PITA for me..... I just prefer a permanent attachment which is easily removed. The finder is first adjusted horizontally and that is not needed again. Vertical adjustment is achieved with the two reddish screws and easily tightened with a coin. The Z-Finder is easily removed by just loosening the two rear screws. The Kirk L bracket is key to this setup.... you may just make out the RRS plate in the first and second images. If wanted the camera can quickly be removed from the L plate. The whole setup is very versatile. The bottom Zacuto plate and RRS plate stay attached to the camera and add very little weight.

    Victor
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Very clever Victor. Thanks for the photos. The engineer in me says, "I want to try that." The aging photographer in me says, "You'll leave bits behind like breadcrumbs." Since I've already got the Z-Finder, it wouldn't take much for me to try it. Thanks again.

    Joe
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    I own two Hoodman loupes and employ then whenever I use my technical camera, as the LCD on my Hasselblad isn't nearly as bright as it could/should be.
    Please help me understand the advantage of the Zacuto.
    Thank you,

    Stanley

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Stanley,

    I started using loupes for focusing when I got my 5DII. Originally I used Schneider loupes for their high focus quality. When I moved from my P45 to IQ180 and my 5DII to 800e I stayed with Schneider but purchased their newer 2 1/4 design. Absolutely wonderful to look through but a little too large to carry around. I had heard glowing reports about the Hoodman and decided to try it out. It lasted in my arsenal for 10 minutes. The optical quality between Schneider Loupes and Hoodman is night and day.... at least for me.....YMMV!

    Before my last trip I decided to try the Zacuto to see what all the excitement was about. The Zacuto lived up to the hype. Very nice optics - easily on par with Schneider and it had the additional hardware for mounting to my 800e.

    The Hoodman is at its price point because the poor optical quality is at that price point...... I suggest you try a quality loupe and see the difference for yourself. If you don't see a difference then stick with the Hoodman..... I'll never own one.

    Victor
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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Thanks Victor,
    I'll order one
    Stanley

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Stanley,

    For your purposes you may want to try the Peak 4X Loupe. That is what I use when I travel exclusively with my Alpa. Its much smaller then either the Schneider or Zacuto and still maintains very high optical quality...... much higher than the Hoodman! Its also very reasonably priced.......

    Victor

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Victor,

    Thanks for posting the images. Using an RRS L bracket, I don't understand what the pieces are. Is it not possible to attach the finder to the L bracket after attaching it to the D800. My expectation would be to attach the Zacuto bracket to the body and then attach to the L bracket.

    My apologies if I'm being dumb here. Engineering was never a strong point for me.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
    www.jeff-grant.com

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    I don't have an RRS L plate..... it wasn't available at the time I needed one so I purchased a dedicated Kirk plate. The problem with those plates is that they are designed to contour around the camera body instead of an Arca style plate which is at the bottom of the Zacuto mount. The Kirk Universal L plate has a quick release clamp designed to fit an Arca style plate and can be used with any camera.

    Victor

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Thanks Victor. I didn't realise that the Kirk bracket works that way.That make a lot more sense. I wonder how it will go with the RRS bracket.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
    www.jeff-grant.com

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    I use a Hoodman with no problem. The eyepiece is adjustable. However, a friend uses a Zeiss loupe to check focus on his D800 and the quality is simply superb. I particularly admire the size compared to the Zacuto and Hoodman.

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    Re: Anyone using Zacuto 2.5x Pro cine-finder on a D800?

    Having done a bit of hunting on the Zacuto site, I found that you can't use an RRS L bracket with the finder. You have to use a different attachment which seems to attach to the body and they recommend a screen protector as part of the setup. My eyes glazed over at that point. Too hard for a simple person like me, back to focus confirmation.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
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