Yea I must be nuts. LOL
Yea I must be nuts. LOL
No dog in this market either but am 'discussing' with the budgetmeister on next step after my 35mm kit -- stick with 35mm or, as prices keep jerking downwards, move up a snack bracket. Think I may have a terminal amount of MF blood in my system. Like a bug to UV as it were.
So, in my case, who is doing or not doing what, with (or to) whom, how things will looks in 12-24 mos (agree will likely be a Hassy-Phamiya fur ball), etc. is of value. Things get a little snarky here and there, but a lot of folks have a lot of $$$ sunk in Leaf et al gear and others can be passionate in their opinions. As long as we keep it 1 step above watching a car-wreck, we should be ok.
That said, I've made my point(s), so for me, it's sit back and watch and see what info comes from/about Leaf. I'd be shocked if the playing field wasn't shrinking (as it appears to be), but as current and potential future users, we need a Sony (Leaf) to Hassy and Phamiya's Canon and Nikon.
Interesting speculations ....
Sony might be very well established to go the next step and build a Axyz MF camera, similar to the S2 or even to Phamiya/Hassi.
They would have all prerequisites:
1) Sensor technology in house
2) Camera technology in house
3) Lens technology in house and with ZEISS
So actually a Sony MF system with Zeiss glass would be what could bring same or better quality as Leica plus much more punch and speed to rollout this system as well as continuously update the camera models.
Would be great if that happened
All I know is that those Rollei lenses are really nice, and I hope there will stay as many back manufactures in the market as possible which support the AFI/Hy6/Rollei system.
Any speculations when we will see the first 6x6 sensor?
Would be more fun than speculating which company might become insolvent or not.
Indeed the watchers now have a good sit position - however, no 'watcher' is actually making any photographs with MFD gear - they are just..umm..watching prices.
In the end- life is too short for me to 'wait' or 'watch' - if I can afford something and it brings some fun - why not?
I am amazed at some of the prices I have seen quoted on here for Phase One/Sinar/Hasselblad gear...less than half the cost of 12 months ago - plenty of incentive for some 'watchers' and 'waiters' to buy - if they were seriously interested. However - the utlity of the gear I bought at higher prices has not changed one iota - so for me there is no drop in fun - someone else buying somethign cheaper doesnt make me feel bad.
Yes the Rollie mount lenses draw beautifully.
I am looking out from my offices this morning across a brilliant golden sunshine morning with dark clouds and fog all mixed magically together. DANG - I wish I had one of my cameras in teh office..-
1) MF sensors are better than DSLR sensors - this is the fact today! But why cannot DSLR sensors reach the same quality than MF sensors in the future? Especially if some wise camera manufacturers design a camera without AA filter ???? And why the M8 is so good has 2 reasons - 1st the lenses of course, but 2nd the lack of an AA filter. There is no other magic about that Kodak sensor - sorry!
2) already today these 24MP DSLRs come pretty close to 30MP MFDBs. There are some differences, but I am pretty sure I meanwhile can treat a 24MP DSLR photo that way in post processing, that you will not be able to tell the difference to a 31MP or 33MP MFDB photo when printed to 60" by 40".
Maybe this is not what you like to accept, maybe you can argue that this is manipulation etc, but it is fact. Have done with already with my Canon 5D2 and Canon glass, and I am pretty sure to be able to do it even better with Sony A900 and Zeiss glass. Always taken into account optimal conditions (lightning, tripod, etc etc.)
I am not saying that digital MF does not have it's area of application of course and with 39MP backs you can definitely achieve much better results than with today's FF DSLRs but I strongly believe that Sony and Canon will be able to get closer to this level with their next generation sensors
If there is Kodak around in these future times? We will see, they are having big troubles today - unfortunately.
And yes, it could of course also be a Dalsa (or Kodak) sensor in a future DSLR, maybe in the R10? But I ask myself, WHY did sony and Nikon and Canon not use Kodak or Dalsa? Easy answer, Canon wants to be independent, Sony as well and Nikon - well they could gave chosen that great Kodak train of sensors, but they decided to go with Sony for some reasons.
So in fact the Kodak / Dalsa offerings seem not to be so good for FF DSLR vendors !?!
Last edited by ptomsu; 29th May 2009 at 07:16.
Perhaps it all boils down to the characteristics of CCD versus CMOS sensors, not anything magic in Dalsa nor Kodak chips.
This is why I think so many folks still love the Canon 1D Mk1. Only 4MP, but CCD vs CMOS and considered to have the weakest AA filter (followed by the 1Ds Mk1) yet in a Canon DSLR.
After the 1ds it all went to hell in a hand basket. Best film like files ever from Canon. IMHO
The big Japanese companies focus on two kinds of cameras:
1. Mass-market. As cheap as possible to manufacture, small sensors, integrated circuits.
2. Press-cameras. As fast as possible, giving as good as possible in-camera JPGs with no further processing
That's why they have AA-filters, they're not aiming >95% after processing, they need <95% quality, but right out of the camera, the press-photographer has no time, the amateur no skill for further processing.
CMOS allows to integrate circuitry, A/D-conversion, processing - all in the "sensor". It's also very flexible to read-out, it has more "intelligence"
A CCD is "only" a couple million light-sensitive-diodes that have to be converted and processed with other components (costs money, takes space, consumes energy). But this "raw"-design also allows a higher fill-rate, the only reason why CCD is still around.
I don't think CCD or CMOS have a different "look", important is the filtering in front of the sensor (bayer-mask) and the further processing. The CMOS-based-cameras process the RAW-data directly coming from the sensor with specialized filters and algorithms - while the CCD-based cameras give a pretty "raw" sensor-data, some can implement basic information into the data (like cyan-corner-correction with M8, or DAC with Hasselblad) but that's not comparable to the processing done in CMOS-based cameras.
I think future professional cameras therefore can use CMOS instead of CCD (when the fill-rate is high enough) but with the same "raw"-processing approach as today with CCD, giving them a similar look.
I do not share your opinion;
1) Equal true is: why cannot MF sensor fabricators advance in their quality same fast as Canon and Sony??? We are speaking of low ISO (or native) when speaking of image quality of course (if need high ISO then it is better with dslr). As far as the M8, I just got one and am pleased beyond my expectations with its image quality. It is only the second digital camera product of all I have purchased that I have felt content with. I do not base that solely on the lenses or lack of AA. I perfect know how to tell the rest apart from those. I frank find it amazing that I find it to yield this level of quality now a few years after it was launched. I would not trade it for a Canon, Nikon or Sony based on the sensor alone, not even their latest incarnations, which besides would mean sticking a computer between my eyes and lens. I repeat, I find the sensor of M8 to be of same character as MFDB, apart from it being 8bit color depth which means it requires exact exposure.
2) My other digital camera product is a Leaf Aptus 65, and yes it is superior in image quality to the M8, albeit with also a different rendering, so indeed it is photographically an interesting combo. Nope, I do not find that 5DII, 1DsMk3, D3X or A900 yield similar image quality or too near of that of my Aptus (although also the older Aptus 22 indeed is very similar at native to my 65...). Why I state all of above? I have a very sensitive eye, not mislead by newest gadget, marketing etc. Although, I admit that Nikon indeed has jumped up from D200 to D3X.
Of course it is up for anyone to judge and make their own opinion. Above comments should be viewed on basis of someone (me) who have been burnt $$ by not capable digital camera products, including D50, D200, ZD (and the smaller ones like DP1, G9 etc). I am very pleased with the image quality of Leaf Aptus and M8. Camera industry is granted else mainly selling incremental MP upgrades, especially certain companies in Japan. As an amateur I simply said bye to what to me is BIG $$$$$, simply because I want to enjoy photography and with an image quality at least of quality levels on pair with film, and... albeit... in suffer of $$$ for my sensitive eyes. When D200 was new I bought it... because people were so convincing that it was superior to 35mm slide film. That was nonsense. Now it is instead DSLRs to level of MFDBs??? In my opinion, sheer nonsense. Sorry, but in all humble honesty my perhaps sensitive eyes disagree with you, but just for that do not jump at me or kick me. In fact, I have seen countless images from 5DII, 1DsMkIII, D3X, A900 I do not find that they to me would be superior in image quality to slide film, and the worst of the three is the A900. Nor are M8 and Aptus superior to slide film, but at least they indeed are of a similar high image quality level. Oh, the argument that we can tweek A900 and the like to look same good as my Aptus? How much time in processing, while I open at defaults, and at higher image quality already at pixel level? You get?
What else can I say? If a DSLR make you happy, then go for it and be happy. It is nothing wrong with DSLR if keeps you content as a tool. If that is who you are, then why argue on MFDB?
Last edited by Anders_HK; 29th May 2009 at 08:49.
Well we seem to have totally different experiences and ways of approach
I of course do not want to convince you of my experience but:
1) so far no one could really prove to me that Aptus is better to any other MFDB solution
2) that there is a clear winner in the MFDB arena in terms of IQ
3) The best IQ I have seen so far is from Dalsa in P65+ and I expect the same from a P40+ as this is in fact the same chip technology
4) Kodak for sure has great sensors, but better than CMOS? At least in DSLR this also nobody could really prove to me - and I owned a DMR and I still own a M8
5) The M8 is great, but does it have better results as say a D3 or D3X or 5D2? Definitely NOT, if you compare over all. If there is a difference as I said it comes from no AA filter and the exceptional Leica M glass (if you use it right)
6) The future (and I count a D3X and a A900 already as begin of the future) shows clearly that the difference between MFDB and FF DSLR is going to shrink. I am not saying it will disappear, but shrink. And this constantly. And so will the price difference - which is good!
7) Film versus MFDB versus 35mm film: well I dare to say after many years of fooling and searching around I have found the best and most cost effective way for film digitization - a Hasselblad Flextight X5. Man, I really love this scanner, its operation, its speed and its IQ results! BUT as much as I like these results and as much as they give me the digital files which I need for large scale fine art prints (80" x 60") from MF film, as much I also am aware at every scan, that already a 22MP file is most times EQUAL or even sometimes better if taken carefully and with the right lenses. And I used to creat my MF films with Hasselblad 503, 2000, Contax 645 (both with Zeiss lenses) and with Rollei 6006 (with Schneider lenses). Sorry to state this, but this is the truth which I experience after many years of trying and testing and I see this every day when I work with that scanner and compare to pure digital shots! One thing is true also, that till the introduction of the latest FF DSLR sensors this has been different. But the latest CMOS stuff is just already VERY good and I expect the next generation to outperform CCD easily - IQ wise and also over the complete ISO range.
So I cannot back your findings about film versus digital and I am not alone with that! Numerous people I know and who are either professional photographers or people who work day in day out in the area of image taking and processing (analog or digital) confirm this to me!
So it can be of course your eyes or your mind our wishful thinking or a combination of all, but in reality it will not hold - I bet
But anyway I accept what you believe and what you like and I wish you happiness and best of luck in all what you do!
And most importantly - enjoy your APTUS back and your M8 - the rest is not so important!
The compression used in the M8 gives a file which is significantly better than a straight linear 8-bit file, by the way, with more bits spent in the shadows and less in the highlights, compared to linear 8-bit files. There are people saying that they can see the resulting artifacts, but in spite of repeated, friendly, requests for raws, none have been forthcoming so far. I am not saying that there aren't any disadvantages, but I have been unable to provoke any so far.
Carsten - Website
My concerns for leica would be based on both their strategy for entering the MF market and some awful timing.
If I understood the rationale and strategy presented at photokina , the S2 was to be the technology and IQ leader for the company. Important future capabilities like AF technology, the camera image processor etc were to be developed to an industry leading level . A new stronger alliance was formed with Phase around the development of future software. These "world class technologies" coupled with Leica s optical capabilities would then trickle down to new products like a new R system .
I think its fairly easy to see how this strategy would come out of Solms. Leica quality and innovation drives the company.. Leica products ....if you are talking IQ.....are peerless.
They are so much better that they can command prices double their competitors. You are just damn happy you can get them.
Does any of this sound familiar ?
When the strategy was initially developed ....digital MF ...was just becoming market relevant(you can argue this but 24 months ago few on this forum were shooting digital MF including the pros ) ....then it exploded with high cost backs and new systems . The economy was still pretty good in the summer of "06". Guy was shooting M8s!
The S2 is a large cash negative product line ...living off the revenues now in 5 areas (1) sport optics ...still makes good money (2) compacts (3) the M8 line .....dropping quickly (4) M lenses ....the new ones are selling ...for how long ? But they are expensive so they are bringing in revenue. (Good job on getting those new lenses to market ! They listened to their customers and came through. You should see the bitching on the Nikon forums about lack of new products for the top end of their market). (5) service.....breakeven?
The worry should be that the products with the best potential for real growth ..(1) a revived R line and (2) a full frame M look to be years away. Down markets slow new product introductions. Lets look ahead :
. Photokina 2010...S2 is really available and most lens can be obtained. The dealer network is in place and Guy is talking about making 60 x 80 prints for his clients (but bitching that no one wants to pay that much....small joke). The R team has styroform mock ups of the R series and Dr K announces another 24 lenses.
.Photokina 2012 ...R is finally getting to customers with a subset of lenses. No one questions the IQ is tops . The buzz is the hand carved model of the M9 ..wild enthusiasm takes over as it has great quality predicted at ISO 6400.
And so on......unfortunately this isn t going to happen ... but it doesn t have to end badly.
The point ..and believe me I do have one ..is that Leica should not position the S2 as the product that will turn around the company . They could make many times the profit of the S2 if they developed a "less expensive " M8 with a partner .
Since this thread is really all forecasting the future for Leica , thought I would throw my 2 cents in. Guy I am only kidding about your new larger than life model prints as I am sure they will be in high demand.
I want full size model prints in 3d , not going to explain that one either. LOL
Peter, just some comments to your post...
5) M8 does in my view. However, a DSLR is more versatile, while in contrast the M8 is amazing simple and fast to use. On sensor side, I find the M8 sensor better (again I refer to low ISO), neglecting MP differences, and indeed it is 16bit but output is 8bit (this is one reason to why rendering MF).
It is healthy to accept a difference in opinion. Likewise sincerely I also wish you very best luck in choices. My first DSLR was a Canon AV-1 for about twenty years. I think that puts perspective when I say I feel my Aptus and M8 finally feel as keepers.
Have we got thread out of topic??? - sorry.
Last edited by Anders_HK; 29th May 2009 at 15:46.
A little story ... a few days ago I was running through my portfolio of paying work with another photographer. A very accomplished and successful photographer. Among the collection were a number of shots done with a couple of different 24 meg DSLRs. When we got to some shots done with the MFD 31 meg camera he stopped me ... looked at the work and quipped ... why is it that there are those who persist in actually saying in public that the 35mm digital cameras can come even close to this? I just shrugged.
RE: your point #2 ... shrug
Tell me about it.
Sitting here twitching on the 35mm side of the fence staring into the abyss knowing it's inevitable...
I agree with above posts, I've worked with both the 1Ds mkI & mkII, but I chose to keep the mkI. Also, thanks to advancements in RAW developers and noise reduction software, high ISO noise isn't as big a problem as it used to be. It's the perfect companion to my P25
Sensor+ may make MFDB viable for my stage work. However, there will need to be a substantial increase in the frame rate for me to consider it. 1.8 fps on the P40+ in Sensor+ mode is not adequate for shooting ballet or lyrical dance. Tap for sure, as well as plays. Then there's the question of shutter noise in a small theater. For now, I will stick with my D700 and may look at the D3H when released.
I don't think MFDB is all things to all people. When I shoot stage projects or plays, I still pick up my DSLRs. Not that the files are too noisy (I find on P30+ ISO1600 when downsized to 24Mp to be very good indeed) but rather because the platform is slower and more clunky. Also, mirror slapping noise can be objectionable in that environment.
I completely agree with you Henry. I was getting some "looks" from the parents as i was photographing some dance recitals this month and that was from my D700! I told them (tongue planted firmly in cheek - they're friends of mine) that if they want me to use a quieter camera, they had to buy lots of pictures so I could afford it!
I am also very interested in how good the A900 with Zeiss glass will hold up against the P45+ and P40+ - will be interesting to see!
My argumentation is currently to wait as long as I can before I decide for an MF system (I still am intrigued by the S2 - call me silly or sick or whatever you want) and so I hope that the A900 together with Zeiss glass can keep me somehow happy during this phase. At least it was a no cost change from some of my Canon and Nikon gear and from what I have seen so far and my past experiences with Zeiss lenses it it looks promising for what I want to use this combo.
I hope at least! Investing in MF means around $ 30.000.- including some lenses and for this decision I want to be able to also see and judge the S2. And then I should be ready to jump in and stay as long as I can
I find some of these comparisons to be odd, bordering on weird.
It's no different from the film days. Pick the tool to do the job. If you have a lot of different jobs or shooting conditions, you'll have a lot of different tools.
Perhaps the difficulty in keeping things straight lies in the fact that each category of tool has become closer than in the past. The gap has closed a bit. But to say the gap is very narrow, or there is none, just tells me it's a poor eye doing the comparison, or its wishful thinking, or the person is so gullible as to actually swallow marketing copy hook line and sinker ... like I used to write during my advertising career
I actually empathize with some who want to believe some D35mm IQ is just as good as MFD. I mean, come on, who wants to drop that kind of cash on camera stuff that the marketing nerds (like me) make you feel inferior about owning with-in 6 months?
In fact, now it's come to speculating on futures. Not only is it the most recent here-and-now that pollutes the mind ... it's what may be, or is coming. It's a bunch of people with their hands in shooting position ... with nothing in their hands ...
Conversely, IF these wishful thinking scenarios where actually true, a vast number of very pragmatic photographic people running a business would have voted with their wallets and put the MFD companies out of business a long time ago.
Isn't this confusing looking with talking?
Also, it may be important to ask if the people doing the comparison in words have actually used the things being compared.
As is stated later in this thread, they are different tools ... comparing a ZD to a 5D-II is a race horse and plow horse comparison.
Same for something like a DMR/R9 and an A900 (both of which I've actually used). The A900 is AF and all the lenses are image stabilized. For what a 35mm DSLR is intended for ... the A900 IQ is superior on more images than the Leica because you actually get the image
IF it's pure IQ without any other consideration, then for what the DMR and Leica glass cost, you can get a more modest MFD camera which will out IQ the DMR.
Granted ... it's all subjective, "eye of the beholder" and all that. Question is ... should the gear be questioned, or should the "eye"? I usually opt for the latter rather than the former ... because that is far more of a varible than the gear ... which "is what it is." Its people "talking" who make it more or less than it is.
I agree with your thoughts, but yes those guys tried both. They had one and was considering dslr, due all marketing hype and raving about DSLR 20+ MP dslrs being, well so "better" quality, but... I admire their eyes for seeing truth.
And yes, very different tools. On my side, different tools as amateur still using film ... that not makes easier carrying different tools. Film days were simpler to me! That is another side of coin of course.
new software on the leafwebsite.
seems at least one guy survived.
i'm sure ptomsu has some elaborate comment on this.
and Jason Gold is still replying to questions on the Leaf Customer Forums.
Jeff Turner's Emerging Light Photography
Seems someone survived