The Metabones adapters, mostly Speed Boosters, have become pretty popular over the last few years. Why? Because they do more than just connect lens type A with camera mount B.
Here is what Wikipedia has to say about that: “An adapter is a device that converts attributes of one electrical device or system to those of an otherwise incompatible device or system. Some modify power or signal attributes, while others merely adapt the physical form of one electrical connector to another.”
While a lot of lens adapters are non-electronic, often referred as “passive”, there are also electronic ones described as “active”. Passive adapters can’t transmit the data between electronic lenses and the camera body. That means it’s not possible to control aperture, auto focus and image stabilization.
We often film with the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera (BMPCC) which has a Micro Four Thirds (MFT) mount. Since we own a lot of Canon glass we decided to get a proper adapter that makes it possible to get full control of those electronic photo lenses. In summer 2014 Metabones introduced a dedicated Pocket Camera adapter (EF lens to BMPCC mount).
Watch our review below to find out why this adapter is so special:
Buy the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera HERE!
Buy the Metabones EF-BMPCC Speed Booster HERE!
Having full control of the aperture of a lens is necessary but the biggest advantage of the Metabones adapter is the increase of light / speed by 1 2/3 stop. That’s also why it’s called Speed Booster. An F/4 lens can shoot at F/2.8 and an F/1.2 lens at F/0.74 which is the maximum it can increase. But honestly, how often do you need to shoot at an aperture of F/0.5?
The increase in light is definitely useful for low light shoots because the highest ISO of the Pocket Camera is 1600.
The lens crop will be around 1.75x instead of ~3x which is much wider. It also delivers a APS-C like shallow depth of field which the camera is lacking because of its small Super 16 sensor. Image stabilization is also supported which is especially useful when it comes to filming hand-held.
The video below shows footage shot with the BMPCC and the Speed Booster:
The key features and specs (from the Metabones.com website):
– Increase maximum aperture by 1 2/3stop. (with a maximum output aperture of f/0.74)
– Increase MTF.
– Makes lens 0.58x wider.
– Optics with 6 elements in 4 groups, designed by Caldwell Photographic in the USA (patent pending).
– Build-in electronics to control lens aperture.
– The Lens aperture is set by the controls on the camera body.
– Powered by camera body. no external power source required.
– High performance 32-bit processor and efficient switched-mode power supply.
– The tripod foot is detachable and compatible with Arca Swiss, Markins and Photo Clam ball heads
Here is a portrait video we shot last year for a local news website using the BMPCC with the Speed Booster:
After using the EF-BMPCC Speed Booster for a year I can say that there haven’t been any issues or problems regarding any lenses. So, is this the best lens adapter and worth spending the money? It certainly is a great option for the little Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera and probably the best choice. There are more and more other companies coming out with similar products but so far nothing comes close to the Metabones Speed Booster.
Written by Moritz Janisch