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Sorry for the delay guys, I'm traveling and have finally found a spot to connect my laptop. I see this is an issue more people like to solve as I see there are aftermarket products. The $980 EVF seems like a nice one but pricey indeed. Maybe the Zacuto optical finder to mount behind the LCD is a good option. It seems very bulky but maybe it works well. The point is I would like to compose / pan / zoom by turning my head not by twisting my hands, because the former feels more intuitive. Also, the magnification in...Show more →
If you're considering an optical finder to mount over the rear LCD, you might do well to consider the Kinotehnik option I recommended over the Zacuto. First, because you are correct -- the Zacuto is bulky. This is due, in part, to the mounting system it uses, which attaches a plate to the bottom of the camera via the tripod mount thread. They do it this way to avoid attaching anything to the back of the camera with adhesive. But the penalty in bulk and weight isn't worth it to me.
The Kinotehnik option uses a frame that attaches with an adhesive strip to the back of the camera. The finder itself then attaches via magnets to the frame. This allows both the finder and the mounting frame to be much less bulky, and allows you to attach or detach the finder in one second. It also leaves the bottom of the camera unencumbered; I know the Zacuto system leaves the battery door blocked on some camera bodies, and complicates matters considerably for those who use quick-release plates for tripod work. The Kinotehnik finder comes with a neck strap, so removing it from the back of the camera is a quick operation -- you just pull it off and drop it, the neck strap keeping it close to your chest so you don't have to hunt for an open pocket or pouch to keep it in.
Many of the reviews you can find will mention that the Zacuto is optically better. That is true, but the difference is only likely to be noticed if you're doing a side-by-side comparison, and is in no way worth the huge price differential. Also, I like the idea that if I accidentally drop the finder over the side of a cliff or damage it, the replacement won't break the bank. I also like that the diopter adjustment is a physical lens that screws in over the finder's objective. Scratches, dirt, etc happen to the removeable/replaceable diopter lens rather than the eyepiece itself.
The ergonomic superiority of the Kinotehnik was so overwhelming that I couldn't see any compelling reason to pick the Zacuto. The significant money savings is just icing on the cake.