It is been a while since I have decided to branch out into architecture/interior design photography as the main part of my business. Therefore, need to setup a kit that can get the job done (more than enough IQ for today's jobs and clients) and also give me some enjoyment when working with as well. That is why I am torn between getting a DSLR or take advantage of my DM22 back by using it with a technical camera like Cambo WRS1200! A Cambo 1200 and 35mm XL with a back adaptor and iPhone holder quite cost me the same as getting a DSLR and a tilt and shift or Zeiss lens!
I know similar questions have been raised before regarding technical cameras and DSLRs like Nikon D800E but I think there is no specific comparison between a lower end digital back and say D800E regarding architecture/interior design photography! I've read all the threads about the available wide angle lenses for Nikon D800E, downloaded and played with D800E RAW files, and so on! Also, emailed some fellow photographers like Guy, Tim Ashely and Dan Lindberg to get their opinion! So yeah, quite a comprehensive research and still can't make a decision
So here is my situation;
Mamiya DM22 back on a technical camera
- Thinking of using the iPhone holder for composing but hate to believe that there is no way to check how much I need to rise/fall unless take a photo/check/retake/check! On the other hand, I know using a ground glass to check composition, focus and movement on a very tiny area of a 36x48mm sensor is not that practical! So, wondering how architecture photographer really compose where the composition and framing is very important, shooting tethered! Don't like it either!
- Base ISO of 25 and max exposure of 30s of my back, make me think if it is really practical to use when there is not enough light for exteriors like at dusk! Considering that I may have to use CF in some situations, have no idea how to cope with the exposure! I Know Dan Lindberg had used CF few times with the same back for his interior photography and some landscape as well and that make me wonder if it can be applied to shooting exterior architecture as well!
- The idea of using LCC with each shift movement is a nightmare! It seems that some folks believe they got used to it after a while!
- Such setup gives more movements, better IQ and corner sharpness, 4:3 ratio and quite 3D looking images that some us see and most don't but all the above hassle make me hesitant to go all technical!
A DSLR setup like Nikon D800E/Canon 5D MK III + tilt and shift lenses
- A lot of complains and bad reviews of Nikon 24mm PC-E on D800E! It seems there is not a very good wide tilt/shift lens for such setup! The other option is getting a wider lens like Zeiss 18mm or 21mm and do all the perspective correction in PS!
- Great tilt shift lenses from Canon but not a good sensor! Canon still suffers from shadow noise, lower dynamic range than Nikon and also less resolution!
- Great Live View function on both of them which makes life easy (better on Canon)
- Long exposure and low light capability of these systems which is incomparable to my digital back!
- Less movements for sure!
Both technical cameras and DSLRS are not perfect! Each has their own limitations and that makes decision making so much harder!
1- Apart from personal experience and enjoyment of working with a tool you like, what would you choose if you were in my shoes!?
2- Do you think the quality of DSLR system like D800E and some wide or tilt and shift lenses would be excellent enough for today's market even if the IQ of those lenses are inferior to their LF brothers!?
3- So basically, does the IQ of DM22 back on a technical camera would be better than a D800E with a not very good lens? (Nikon 24mm PC-E, Zeiss 18mm or 21mm)
I should mention that my budget is very tight so cannot upgrade my back at this stage! So, I have to make a decision to pickup one of these systems and never look back!
Thank you so much in advance for your opinions!