I thought I'd begin a new thread where we can discuss the pros and cons on using a technical camera. At the risk of repeating myself, here's a little of my history into Dante's sub-cavern of medium format technical cameras.
The result I see with my setup is by no means a single feat. I owe an awful lot to others who have experimented and passed on their knowledge. Anyway here goes..
Fall of 2008 I wanted to take my landscape photography to the next level; part of the reason being I was tired of capturing spherical images to stitch into a panorama (and loosing too much information) and wanted to begin flat-stitching. I also wanted to use better lenses. As good as the Phase/Mamiya lenses I was using they weren't then and I still believe today as good as what can be used on a technical camera.
As luck would have it I have a great camera dealer which I count both as a friend and one I trust (Capture Integration). I was talking to them saying how much I wanted to go to the next level and wanted to try a Cambo system. The first system I tried was the beautiful Cambo Ultima. I still all these years later lust after this camera. I tried it in Monument Valley and fell in love with it. What I didn't love was the weight so sadly I had to give it up.
Then I learned of the Cambo WRS-1000; a system that Cambo had just released a couple months prior that was made specifically for digital medium format photography. I tried a new in the box WRS-1000 while at the North Rim that Fall and fell heads over heals. I was shooting the WRS with a 35mm Schneider (with center filter) and a P45+ as my current back, a P30+ wouldn't have work neared as well. In one day I was hooked and that night I began knitting my mask. I ended up keeping the kit refusing to return it, trading my P30+ instead. I ended up shooting the WRS almost exclusively for the next couple months and soon there was a huge sell-off of Mamiya/Phase bodies and lenses as I went to shoot nothing but the WRS for several years.
Anyone who knows me knows I later added a Leica M9 as my walk around camera. I had at the time felt that the M9 was a (near) perfect companion camera to the WRS/P45+ as both had the same sensor and produced nearly the same image quality. Sadly the M9 couldn't hold up to my printing standards as I tend to print large and the resolution at the time suffered. The M9 went away to be replaced by yet another Phase camera, this time a gently used DF and a soon a host of lenses. The P45+ was upgraded to a P65 which in turn was replaced by an IQ160 which just a couple months ago was replaced by a gently used IQ180.
During this timeframe of using the WRS-1000 (which is now more like a 1250 as I added wooden handles for easy of using with gloves) I experimented using groundglass and viewfinders. While both work to a degree the watershed event was the release of both the IQ series and getting a working USB3 port as well as the Microsoft Surface Pro 2. And like any good citizen of Dante I adopted first the SP2 and shortly afterwards the SP3 (there won't be a SP4 as it looks to be too large).
We have several threads going that contain great information on tethering the Surface Pro as well as images of technical cameras. Likewise we have reviews of various technical cameras as well as a thread that contains images taken using various technical cameras.
What I hope with this thread is to have an open and frank discussion on the pros and cons of using such a camera system. Let's begin with the camera itself, then move to the lenses and finally to the back.
(this is the setup I was using last night to shoot a typical Arizona sunset and at the same time test a new filter. Taken this morning using a Sony A7r and Mitakon 50mm f/0.95 - using the right tool for the application).