Anamorphic

Anamorphic on a Budget – Iscomorphot Inflight 16/1.75x

October 1, 2017

One of the less common adapters in the Isco lineup, this is my first 1.75x review. This lens is, in many ways, a beast.

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Good morning, fellow anamorphic shooters, I’m Tito Ferradans and today we’re gonna chat about a rare projection lens, the Iscomorphot Inflight 16/1.75x. I started out with great expectations for this one, as a member of the Isco lineup and the first 1.75x I’ve played with. The Inflight is a beast – down to every meaning this could have. It’s big, heavy, cumbersome and delivers some of the most impressive images I’ve laid my eyes on. If this adapter was single focus, people would be killing each other for it.

OVERVIEW
This review was only possible thanks to Max Prodaniuk, who let me have the lens for way longer than I planned. Thank you so much, Max! Max shoots out of Ukraine and it’s worth to check out his work!

Ok, enough about Max, let’s talk about the Iscomorphot. There are several Iscomorphots around, with different stretches and sizes, so don’t start thinking any Iscomorphot is gonna be this one. Its surname, “Inflight”, means this adapter lived up in the air, being used to project scope films on airplanes! Since the screen wouldn’t move around, this adapter features a focus-lock mechanism which operates by tightening or loosening the front ring. Focus won’t budge if you screw this down.

Let’s get the tech out of the way. This is a projection lens, the exact type I dislike: heavy, big, hard to lug around, this Iscomorphot weighs 1.2kg or 3lb. The front element is 74mm, with a lot of housing all around, and the rear is 54mm – slightly bigger than an Iscorama 54. It’s got double focus, super long throw, around 400 degrees, markings only in feet, and it focuses from infinity down to a little under 8ft, or 2.5m.

Stretch is pretty rare and special, at 1.75x, meaning it converts 4:3 footage almost perfectly to Cinemascope 2.35:1, as opposed to 2x, that creates the longer 2.66:1.

Due to the extreme front weight, I made my own rail-supported clamp – you can find the link on the video description – and still used a lens support on the 15mm rails. Since most of the adapter rotates while focusing, this was an annoying setup to use and incredibly hard to keep safe while shooting. The other annoying part about this adapter is the lack of front threads combined with a thick housing, which means you’ll have to be resourceful when coming up with a front clamp or diopter-attaching solutions for closer focus and/or single focus.

PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
This adapter is so hard to come by that I can’t really trace a price pattern. I think I’ve seen one or two on eBay in the past few years. If you can get this for anything less than $1000, I’d say you’re getting a good deal.

RESOLUTION
This is where I wanted to see if the Isco name was true to all of its lineup – short answer, yes. Double focusing is extra hard on this lens, but once you get it right, the results are crystal clear even at fast apertures and only get better as you stop down the taking lens.

FLARES
For me these look like Iscorama pre-36’s flares on steroids. They’re warm gold, crisper and cleaner than the pre-36’s – which for me is a trait of cine-anamorphics and higher priced lenses. They also seem to wrap around the image in a more organic way, almost bending at the edges. Pretty sweet.

SENSOR COVERAGE
In terms of vignetting, I was able to get almost perfect 2.66:1 using Canon’s 40mm pancake. If you bump it up to 50mm, you’re good for full sensor coverage and the unusual 3.11:1 ratio.

My closing thoughts on this adapter are that the image-making aspects of it are unique in a positive way. Image quality, character, flares, sensor coverage, rare stretch and overall feel are better than most other anamorphics. But the hassle you face to shoot with it is so tough I would think twice or three times before taking it out for an actual project. If you have unlimited time, this lens is amazing. If you have unlimited budget and want to rehouse it, I think it could be one of the strongest adapters out there, especially if combined with a single focus solution. Unfortunately I don’t have all that time, or money – or even this lens, for all that matters! It’s up to you if you want something that’s easy to use or something that looks like nothing else. Regardless of the choice, this is a gem.

What did you think of this one? For questions or suggestions, leave a comment! You should know the drill by now, please like the video and share it with friends that would love this lens! You’re a key part in the growth of this channel, subscribing and sharing the videos helps immensely. If you feel like going the extra mile, I have a bunch of perks out on Patreon and you can be a part of this. This is it for this week. Tito Ferradans out.