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Thread: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    THE REQUIREMENT AS I SEE IT

    Wildlife is not at all like what I am talking about. Let me give you a few examples.... since I have been fielding a boat load of **** about this .

    Look at a photographer like Walter Ioose (and I apologize about the spelling.) He has two great sports books one about golf and another about baseball. His latest is on Michael Jordan. The last thing he needs is another sharp perfect telephoto image of a player in action. He need something that will stand out . If he was shooting the Masters ..he would look for an angle that showed say Tiger (please no jokes) and his caddy with the context of the crowd in the background . Or the final put on number 10 in a play off.

    Or if he shot the yankees ...as I did last year...he would get close to Derrick Jeter and getting him interacting with the manager.

    SI had a two page cover on Baseball in detroit ...the camera was positioned on the ground with a wide angle and it showed most of the stadium as well as the play in action. This should have been a MF image ...amazing crowd detail.

    The biggest issue in sports photography is getting access...but wow if you have it...you want to make the most of it. I could take any one of ten events I shot last year and illustrate the difference. But come on ..I shoot sports ...I have for a long time....I know exactly why and where MF would give you an edge.

    Take my word for it....what you want in MF is DSLR handling with a MF image..I know you can t match the Nikon/Canon Pro bodies. This is why I urged David Farkes to shoot the Volleyball activities and I thought his results were excellent. If you were looking for just a few great images verse 800 shot on CF he proved the S2 could do it. IMHO it was way better than the H system blad for this application. (I was impressed by the Blad but I liked the S2 for shooting action).

    In Atlanta there is a gallery called Marte that specializes in Fine Art Golf Images..these are very large format prints that a landscapes with Golf as a theme or images of Golf legands up close . They handle WI collection..look at their website.

    My apology if I wasn t clear but you don t get to redefine the requirements into a DSLR specification and then ask whats the problem use the right tool.


    WHATS REQUIRED

    Forget the tripod ..not going to happen unless you are exceptionally clever..so its hand held or on a monopod (would be my choice) . This is a hand held requirement and its exceptionally challenging..right ...I shot tennis for 10 years using K64 100% manual focus. I can go on...I grew up doing this.
    No question that the newest MF sensor show every flaw in your technique and using any MF will be a challenge.

    You can do a lot of this with the other MF systems....as i noted I used the V series Hasselblad for tennis (not fun). Like my prior response ...yeah you could do it but if you had both systems which one would you pick to walk around the Masters tournament.


    WHY I LIKE THE S2 FOR THIS APPLICATION

    I ve been considering for a few years getting a Hasselblad system to shoot some of the sports I get to do. (and I still might do this). I can pull specific images from my archive ..that would have benefited from MF.

    The form of the S2 is perfect for my application and I liked the way the lenses feel in manual over ride.

    WEATHER SEALING

    Let me make this simple ...I live 1/2 mile from the Atlantic Ocean. Lets see we have salt water,sand,lots of rain and humidity. This is the 2nd most windy location on the east coast and they hold international kiteboarding events at the end of my street. This is a big surfing location for Florida . Summary ......environmentally challenging for anything digital.

    I use Nikons that are weather sealed ..the M9 s are limited to inland activities and the summer when I am traveling .

    But I also get to interact and meet with lots of pros that use South Beach in Miami for commercial location shoots. This is true location shooting often on the beach.

    MY POV

    I started my post pointing out that S2 appears to me to have two distinct advantages over the competition that aren t mentioned. (1) The form and handling (similar to DSLR...similar not as good ) are better suited to some applications. (2) the weather sealing has been totally ignored as a benefit.


    I have made no attempt to rationalize the S2 as the "best MF" ..that is fruitless. There are many benefits of the other systems and clear advantages for specific individuals requirements. I can completely understand the logic put forth by those that have "given up on the promise of the S2" . Given the challenges of cost,availability and leica s track record in new product intoduction .. I couldn t even recommend it someone...unless I really knew their requirements well.

    But..I don t agree that the S2 doesn t have any meaningful advantages over the others . You don t have to agree...I was only trying to provide a different point of view.
    Roger the same can be said about the use of a modular system but we left all that out of this review and many other functional debates and focused on the image quality. The other stuff is just wasted debate that never ends. End of day pick the best tool to get it done. No one shoots the same and most of this end is personal preference. Hell Roger seriously there is not much I could not shoot with either system, but it may not be the absolute best tool to do it. I am in a one system category myself so vast diversity in that system is what I need . Many other folks like yourself have 2 or 3 and pick the system that fits that need and you even pointed that out which is great but you look in the cabinet think about what you are going to do and make a camera choice. I look in the cabinet and there are no choices it's gotta work or I rent and honestly my decision to own the MF and rent the 35mm system has proven a excellent choice since I have yet to spend a dime on renting. But even a big project most Pro's may even leave there gear home and rent when in the soup. We still have to remember the costs of these systems and the risks in some situations and a lot of Pros are NOT willing to take a risk on 50k in gear but a nikon or Canon is completely replaceable just by going down the street in most cases.

    Sure the S2 has weather sealing and I don't think anyone said that was not good but I am not so sure that given the percentage of buyers how much that really is there number one priority. It's a nice feature and if you need it obviously the tool for the job. The handling part I'm sorry I still don't agree. There is no rule book saying a 35mm handles better than a Hassy or Phase modular body it is what a lot of us are used to working with on a daily basis so it is a comfortable thing .That big grip on the side is there for a reason and in a lot of folks hands there crutch to shooting. Again this comes down to personal preference. Seriously I like the handling of the DF body better than I did the s2 and damn that S2 is one sexy cat but it did not feel all that comfortable for my hands but that is me and you have much larger hands than I do. I know this since your tipping 6 "3" is my guess. I'm a short whoop with small hands. LOL

    Anyway this stuff we can debate till the cows come home and actually lay eggs. We really focused more on the image quality so yes many things where left out. That info is out there to read, we felt no need to repeat it and we where busy enough with what we did. We thought more people would be interested in downloading 70 images and having a field day seeing what ticks. That no one has done but US
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by markowich View Post
    do yourself a favour and get a P65+ ----)))
    peter
    Hi Peter,

    Believe me I have thought of doing so: I am working on a job at the moment that requires me to produce 14 very large images, over six feet tall, and whilst the P45+ actually did really nicely at the proof of concept stage and I have no doubt I could use it for the upcoming final shoots, one always craves more resolution for these really large jobs. On the other hand a fine art print of mine went at auction for an indecent price the other day, far in excess of anything previous, and it was a crop from a 5D file on a not very great lens so....

    Trouble with the P65+ is that my only Phamiya wide is the 28D which is a soggy in the corners lens even on a P45+ (though not on the slightly smaller sensored cameras, I get that) and I have heard such variable quality reports of other Phamiya wides. Many people are saying that Phamiya glass is equalling S glass and I am sure that the best of it can but we all, to be honest, know that it's not all the best...I would also add that the image circle of my Schneider 35XL is such that stretching it to a 65+ will reduce the latitude for movements to the point where using a tech camera for that purpose becomes more marginal too.

    What is currently putting me off the S2 most is the lack of ability to make and gauge exposure comp without taking the camera from the eye. I was told by a product specialist yesterday that they'd interviewed hundreds of photographers before settling the ergo spec but I cannot for the life of me see how they missed that one: it's like building a Lambo without a fuel gauge...

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I would never buy any MF system - including the S2 - today for harsh environment and for speed. This is simply something not fitting together with today's available technologies, although I must admit that the S2 is kind of setting the standards here.

    If one really needs those features, then simply go with Nikon or Canon existing top models or just wait for the next generation of their top models and be happy. Also Sony might be in this game, not so sure about their weather sealing and of course speed of the camera and system, here clearly Nikon and Canon are the winners.

    Pretty sure that most buyers of a MF system are looking for stellar IQ and some good handling as their main requirements. We should not make the failure and start intermixing 35mm and MF features and strength here, this is done in many other fora, it is complete nonsense and the discussions are not good - friendly said.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    Hi Peter,

    Believe me I have thought of doing so: I am working on a job at the moment that requires me to produce 14 very large images, over six feet tall, and whilst the P45+ actually did really nicely at the proof of concept stage and I have no doubt I could use it for the upcoming final shoots, one always craves more resolution for these really large jobs. On the other hand a fine art print of mine went at auction for an indecent price the other day, far in excess of anything previous, and it was a crop from a 5D file on a not very great lens so....

    Trouble with the P65+ is that my only Phamiya wide is the 28D which is a soggy in the corners lens even on a P45+ (though not on the slightly smaller sensored cameras, I get that) and I have heard such variable quality reports of other Phamiya wides. Many people are saying that Phamiya glass is equalling S glass and I am sure that the best of it can but we all, to be honest, know that it's not all the best...I would also add that the image circle of my Schneider 35XL is such that stretching it to a 65+ will reduce the latitude for movements to the point where using a tech camera for that purpose becomes more marginal too.

    What is currently putting me off the S2 most is the lack of ability to make and gauge exposure comp without taking the camera from the eye. I was told by a product specialist yesterday that they'd interviewed hundreds of photographers before settling the ergo spec but I cannot for the life of me see how they missed that one: it's like building a Lambo without a fuel gauge...
    i am using the rodenstock 28mm apo-sironar on the P65+. it gives you a little room for movements though not all that much. the 23mm schneider is supposed to have a huge image circle and reportedly outstanding quality.
    even if leica manages to overcome all difficulties and brings out a high quality TS lens, i am still put off my the lack of live view. the TS lenses on my D3x are a joy to use in combination with LV and magnification.
    actually i do not like the HTS 1.5 on the H3DII 50 for precisely the lack of LV.
    peter

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    THE REQUIREMENT AS I SEE IT

    Wildlife is not at all like what I am talking about. Let me give you a few examples.... since I have been fielding a boat load of **** about this .

    Look at a photographer like Walter Ioose (and I apologize about the spelling.) He has two great sports books one about golf and another about baseball. His latest is on Michael Jordan. The last thing he needs is another sharp perfect telephoto image of a player in action. He need something that will stand out . If he was shooting the Masters ..he would look for an angle that showed say Tiger (please no jokes) and his caddy with the context of the crowd in the background . Or the final put on number 10 in a play off.

    Or if he shot the yankees ...as I did last year...he would get close to Derrick Jeter and getting him interacting with the manager.

    SI had a two page cover on Baseball in detroit ...the camera was positioned on the ground with a wide angle and it showed most of the stadium as well as the play in action. This should have been a MF image ...amazing crowd detail.

    The biggest issue in sports photography is getting access...but wow if you have it...you want to make the most of it. I could take any one of ten events I shot last year and illustrate the difference. But come on ..I shoot sports ...I have for a long time....I know exactly why and where MF would give you an edge.

    Take my word for it....what you want in MF is DSLR handling with a MF image..I know you can t match the Nikon/Canon Pro bodies. This is why I urged David Farkes to shoot the Volleyball activities and I thought his results were excellent. If you were looking for just a few great images verse 800 shot on CF he proved the S2 could do it. IMHO it was way better than the H system blad for this application. (I was impressed by the Blad but I liked the S2 for shooting action).

    In Atlanta there is a gallery called Marte that specializes in Fine Art Golf Images..these are very large format prints that a landscapes with Golf as a theme or images of Golf legands up close . They handle WI collection..look at their website.

    My apology if I wasn t clear but you don t get to redefine the requirements into a DSLR specification and then ask whats the problem use the right tool.


    WHATS REQUIRED

    Forget the tripod ..not going to happen unless you are exceptionally clever..so its hand held or on a monopod (would be my choice) . This is a hand held requirement and its exceptionally challenging..right ...I shot tennis for 10 years using K64 100% manual focus. I can go on...I grew up doing this.
    No question that the newest MF sensor show every flaw in your technique and using any MF will be a challenge.

    You can do a lot of this with the other MF systems....as i noted I used the V series Hasselblad for tennis (not fun). Like my prior response ...yeah you could do it but if you had both systems which one would you pick to walk around the Masters tournament.


    WHY I LIKE THE S2 FOR THIS APPLICATION

    I ve been considering for a few years getting a Hasselblad system to shoot some of the sports I get to do. (and I still might do this). I can pull specific images from my archive ..that would have benefited from MF.

    The form of the S2 is perfect for my application and I liked the way the lenses feel in manual over ride.

    WEATHER SEALING

    Let me make this simple ...I live 1/2 mile from the Atlantic Ocean. Lets see we have salt water,sand,lots of rain and humidity. This is the 2nd most windy location on the east coast and they hold international kiteboarding events at the end of my street. This is a big surfing location for Florida . Summary ......environmentally challenging for anything digital.

    I use Nikons that are weather sealed ..the M9 s are limited to inland activities and the summer when I am traveling .

    But I also get to interact and meet with lots of pros that use South Beach in Miami for commercial location shoots. This is true location shooting often on the beach.

    MY POV

    I started my post pointing out that S2 appears to me to have two distinct advantages over the competition that aren t mentioned. (1) The form and handling (similar to DSLR...similar not as good ) are better suited to some applications. (2) the weather sealing has been totally ignored as a benefit.


    I have made no attempt to rationalize the S2 as the "best MF" ..that is fruitless. There are many benefits of the other systems and clear advantages for specific individuals requirements. I can completely understand the logic put forth by those that have "given up on the promise of the S2" . Given the challenges of cost,availability and leica s track record in new product intoduction .. I couldn t even recommend it someone...unless I really knew their requirements well.

    But..I don t agree that the S2 doesn t have any meaningful advantages over the others . You don t have to agree...I was only trying to provide a different point of view.
    Roger, this is a good overall post IMO, with lots of interesting things to discuss. You are very specific about possible applications for the S2, and I'd like to randomly answer a few of them based on direct experience as opposed to speculation, theory or vaporware.

    Sports Illustrated is a smaller form, high volume print application. MF capture would be of very little to no IQ advantage compared to your D3X in terms of end printed result, yet the D3X would be of great advantage with a 14-24 or 200/2 or 300/2.8 VR : -)

    Shooting action ... while David's Volleyball examples were nice, it was nothing that I haven't done numerous times with my H3D. I've posted action shots with the H ... like the Muddy Creek Rain Gear shoot I did with a H3D/31 and H3D/39 ... which featured Horse back riders at full gallop straight at me, from a 3/4 angle and across frame ... often in splashing water to demo the product. The difference was that these location shots WERE intended as trade show booth prints up to 8 feet wide not a puny magazine spread, so for me it mandated MFD to maintain fine details in the actual product when viewed up close at the show. My back-up shooter was using a Canon 1DsMKIII with L lenses and the H shots were all visibly better ... every shot picked by the Art Director was an H shot. Proof is in the pudding.

    Like any system, once familiar with any gear, a user can often out-do someone who tries it once or twice, and concludes the gear incapable of something. I am very familiar with the H and have no issue with AF. I suspect that is the case with the S2 also. I was disappointed in the S2 AF even after David suggested using the rear button (to be fair, he has since said the new firmware has improved that aspect a bit) ... but that initial disappointment was based on the expectation of obviously better AF than the H and closer to the D3X ... neither of which manifested itself. I would speculate that the S2 would be better with practice. I seriously doubt it will be better than the H4D AF with the new focus re-compose feature which is a very useful innovation for the types of photography we are discussing here.

    Weather sealed is a nice feature. Doesn't stop junk getting in the hole when changing lenses ... all of my 170 S2 shots have a big dust bunny in the sky. Cleaning a digital back is a no-brainer, cleaning a DSLR is not. Like many Phase shooters, I have shot the H cameras in every sort of condition you can name ... not always deliberately ... but it happens. A white out Michigan blizzard ... a sudden monsoon downpour featuring vertical pelting rain and winds that ripped the cover off a vented doorman's umbrella and blew it 200 feet away ... shooting on the beaches of the Great Lakes or in the "Windy City" itself ... as well as humid Miami, Tampa, Georgia and South Carolina. Not one single issue to date. Nothing I'd recommend mind you, but also something that isn't a source of worry either, because the cameras have taken a licking and kept on ticking. Now, if you could drop the S2 in the ocean and retrieve it unscathed, that would be cool!

    I will speculate that the S2 may be able to be hand held better than some MFD cameras ... not for ultimate sharpness, but to get a shot no matter what. The smaller sensor and resulting smaller mirror is a bit of an advantage here IMO. The S2 was very quiet, and I was able to shoot at speeds I was surprised by.

    Had I not experience the H system, used it in many different situations to solve problems, have a broad range of lenses and accessories to solve those problems NOW, had not re-discovered view camera work with killer lenses and full movements, know the resolution of 50 and 60 meg sensors is distancing itself from anything the DSLRs could possibly come up with, have confidence in the service support as opposed to not having good experiences with Leica ... and most of all, had not committed a personal fortune in H gear only to commit a even greater personal fortune in S2 gear ... well, then maybe.

    Doesn't mean the S2 is off the shopping list ... I have sold off over half of my gear closet (including yesterday's sale of my entire 203FE system locally) to fund the purchase of a S2 3 lens system. But that was before Hasselblad made it so attractive to upgrade to a H4D/60 at less than 1/2 the cost of the S2 kit.

    -Marc

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by guyharrisonphoto View Post
    Despite my critical posts previously, I will repeat that, in these two areas, Leica really got it right. The handling is superb and the weather sealing is tremendous. The question remains, will these two features—admittedly superior to what it is existing now in MF—lead to making images not possible now?

    Unfortunately I must conclude, not necessarily.

    (lots of analysis)
    I think it is important to add "for you" here. There will be people for whom the very specific advantages of the S2 are deal-clinchers. In spite of all the people in this thread saying that they have shot their Phase/Hasselblad/Contax/... in inclement weather and nothing happened, there are people for whom their system has died, and the S2 will have a small number of additional customers due to this.

    I think that the concept is still spot-on, but Leica has a small list of things that they need to address to bring the execution up to the level of the expectations. I expect that the introduction of the wides will bring an advantage for the S2, and if they can fix the tethering and add Exp +/- and maybe ISO to the viewfinder, then it starts to look good again.

    Btw, Leica has announced a 350mm f/3.5 APO.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    One of my favorite sayings (from the 19th century, and NO, I didn't hear it first hand )

    "the is no sure path to success... but there IS a sure path to failure...

    ....trying to please everyone.

    I am happy finally to see balanced criticisms, after pages of a few posters with incessant harping..

    ".. Leica is dead
    ... sell it short
    .. I'm off the list..
    Waste of R&D..
    ..two years too late..."

    There were dire predictions of Hasselblad demise in the move around the world, Contax is now a vampire [I VANT your BLOOD!!! ] and MF is bigger than 10 years ago.

    It is what it is. The sterling review here puts Leica on a par with other MF systems, with albeit, a few fixes to work on (and even Guy/Jack forgot a few tests, and we know they hardly EVER forget anything... they are too yoiung. ) and the price IQ seems at this point a toss up.

    I am pleased how nicely Phase/M has evolved and I think S2 will be the same. at wides and telephoto Leica has been peerless..the 350/3.5 will be the fastest tele available.

    Tether is likely software, a "S2.2" will be needed to put exposure in the viewfinder and lenses are already in the pipeline.

    It is one thing to be critical, but please, can we stop the "chicken little" imitations? It frankly is not fair to the good work that was done here, that shows, BTW that the S2 CAN be a contenda..

    ..Let's give it a chance.

    Victor

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I think that the concept is still spot-on, but...
    I agree with this sentence fragment... and have my own short list of things that would follow the "but" and none of them should be insurmountable. I'll skip listing the specifics as I think I've expressed them on numerous occasions. There are quite a few folks, however, that think the concept is flawed and that is a fundamental difference of opinion that won't be overcome by an improvement in the buffer, tethering speed, etc., e.g. those that prefer the modularity of existing systems and the ability to use them with tech backs. I think Leica made a smart business decision to offer something other than what's already on the market but time will tell. What Leica has to absolutely, positively do right now is make sure they do not alienate the group that likes the concept and get that list of "buts" resolved. In short, they need to "execute" and they need to do it quickly.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by gogopix View Post
    One of my favorite sayings (from the 19th century, and NO, I didn't hear it first hand )

    "the is no sure path to success... but there IS a sure path to failure...

    ....trying to please everyone.
    Victor
    Funny you should post this as I just made a note of a similar quote by the founder of Price Club:

    “We think the secret of good...merchandising is the intelligent loss of sales,”

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    In spite of all the people in this thread saying that they have shot their Phase/Hasselblad/Contax/... in inclement weather and nothing happened, there are people for whom their system has died, and the S2 will have a small number of additional customers due to this.
    Would it be possible to provide specifics on those who have had their MFD gear die because of inclement weather? We have heard from lots of those who didn't experience issues, but haven't heard a peep from those who haven't ... at least I haven't seen or heard from anyone, anywhere.

    -Marc

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I agree David . It's a different concept which I think is a good one . It does offer something different and as such maybe we get hung up there on that alone. I think maybe said pretty well it is neither a fish or a fowl but it certainly is a flying marlin. LOL

    It's a different tool that offers some unique features we don't have in MF and some that are not found in 35mm. Maybe we are trying to stick it into a category that needs to be created and not already there.

    End of day folks that is not a bad thing just adds diversity of product in the market. All we are trying to do is give you some visual options to see what maybe it could do for you. Obviously we will have some that hate the whole enchilada and some think it is the next coming of whatever his name is. But I do agree with David and something we pretty much all can agree on is it needs to have all it's little nits fixed and working otherwise it looks not so hot as it is today on the buffer , tethering software and ya da ya da. But if we look past that as being fixed and working properly than it is a option that some may take some may love and some may run for the hills on. All that is great and the same can be said for any MF system. I don't like the Hy6 , David loves it. Just a matter of taste. But the key word of the day is Leica needs to EXECUTE on this or it won't fly even to the diehard Leica fan. believe it or not that includes me , i like Leica stuff but I also deal in reality and this stuff and some changes need to be done on a extremely short time frame. Plus they simply need to get lenses out the door sorry but two lenses on release does not build the confidence i need to switch nor a lot of MF shooters not to mention people moving up from 35mm cams. This is no secret folks Jack and I said this directly to leica and they know the concerns and to get this thing cooking on all cylinders.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Would it be possible to provide specifics on those who have had their MFD gear die because of inclement weather? We have heard from lots of those who didn't experience issues, but haven't heard a peep from those who haven't ... at least I haven't seen or heard from anyone, anywhere.

    -Marc
    Have to agree i heard of ONE incident where a Phase shooter dropped his cam in the Ocean. One member here has dropped his Phase back on concrete and broke the LCD glass. This is normal stuff that happens. For these facts let's ask a dealer that deals with this everyday but I don't hear of many war stories.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Would it be possible to provide specifics on those who have had their MFD gear die because of inclement weather? We have heard from lots of those who didn't experience issues, but haven't heard a peep from those who haven't ... at least I haven't seen or heard from anyone, anywhere.

    -Marc
    I recall a story of a guy who dropped for the briefest of moments (<1s) an MFDB camera in the ocean, pulled it out, and it was dead. I think it was an H3D but it doesn't really matter which it was; weather sealing would have helped that guy. I will try to find the story again, but really, it doesn't matter. It is beyond dispute that there is a use for weather sealing. Look how many people have pined for weather sealing in the 5D, yet how many have actually died? It is more about peace of mind and focusing on photography rather than towels and umbrellas.

    Guy Harrison is probably right in that most people will never need that and it won't make any difference, but Leicas have never been about most people, and there will be someone out there for whom this matters. It is an open question if it a real niche or just two guys, but at least the mind can imagine it.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Would it be possible to provide specifics on those who have had their MFD gear die because of inclement weather? We have heard from lots of those who didn't experience issues, but haven't heard a peep from those who haven't ... at least I haven't seen or heard from anyone, anywhere.

    -Marc
    Not from inclement weather, but it happened to me at the GetDPI lighting workshop down here in Florida. Shooting a model in the surf... I'm down low trying to get the angle I want (using WLF) and a rogue wave (at least one foot high) washes up and over my kit which died on the spot. Dumb is an understatement... idiotic is probably closer and I think MORON pretty much says it right. Took the kit apart and wiped/rinsed it immediately with bottled water and left it to dry in the Florida sun. Had a tense two hours before it came back to life. I was shooting kiteboarders with Roger the other day using the same kit and wouldn't get closer than 15' to the surf. If I had an S2 I'd probably venture 5' closer

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    This thread has reached the "I wonder who these people are talking to" stage. It appears the S2 might be dropped into water for X seconds and still shoot. (You might want to clean the lens after, though.) Perhaps David Farkas can do a series of controlled tests to see how many seconds it'll take to kill the thing. And the Phase One back can support an elephant. These could be tested by Jack and Guy with a series of ever larger elephants.

    But I doubt that the Leica zealots are going to change their minds about their desire to buy the camera. I just wonder why it seems necessary to keep repeating the same arguments. An ax may be a better tool for surgery than a sledgehammer, but I suspect a scalpel would still be the tool of choice. I look forward to hearing that Walter Iooss has started taking an S2 to cover sporting events.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    It's really hard in the head to take ANY 40k kit near any water no matter what. Weather sealing may bring some piece of mind but it still is a scary adventure. Now a 35mm kit at maybe 7k than I would be in the water if I had too. That damn money factor will play a role in your head that is for sure. No question a nice feature but it does have some negative effect on the S2 it makes manual focusing stiff , not a bad thing but just a effect of it. Some may like that and some may not.

    Anyway I think we beat the on weather sealing.

    Next item up please.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Well yes I killed a LCD of my P65, but I know for a fact that a normal Nikon or Canon would have broken as well. Now comes the question, would sapphire glass like Leica offers it hold? Perhaps, but who knows it ? Who want's to try it ? I certainly don't and I can say for sure that my insurance is a lot more happy to pay for a normal glass replacement compared to what a sapphire glass would cost.

    When it comes to weather I don't know. I mean I can tell you that I shot my P45 in Antarctica in the same conditions most Canon 5DII failed. (However, the one I used worked fine) I shot it in heavy rain and it did not fail me at all. I shot my P65 in nearly 60 degrees C in direct sunlight for a few hours in death valley without problems and I can tell you that even here in Hong Kong, in rain and a humidity of nearly 100% the stuff works still fine.

    For me there is ONE other way MORE important question to be asked. What happens if your S2 dies in the rain, because of water damage ? Does warranty cover it or not ? I know a 5DII is not covered as most stuff.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Would it be possible to provide specifics on those who have had their MFD gear die because of inclement weather? We have heard from lots of those who didn't experience issues, but haven't heard a peep from those who haven't ... at least I haven't seen or heard from anyone, anywhere.

    -Marc
    We don't have a death board or anything to keep formal track so it's possible I've forgotten someone but in 2.5 years I've had one total lose amongst our customers: a complete immersion into salt water.

    I've also had two pretty expensive repairs for dropped backs, one the LCD busted when it fell, and the other the back still functioned technically speaking, but given the severity of the cosmetic damage all parties (customer, us, phase) thought it was best to do a pretty extensive service check to replace much of the back's exterior.

    Never once to inclement weather, but I'm not positive that's a great indication as most MF owners are likely to self-regulate themselves and not pour a bucket of water directly onto their equipment. The S2 sealing is truly impressive; though only several months of broad and public use can really inform us on it's real world level of protection (which I believe will be excellent but want to see in the real world before believing in fully).

    Not bad for 2.5 years.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by gogopix View Post
    ..two years too late..."
    yes, I think so. It's not harping (maybe it sounds like, sorry then).
    Let me elaborate…
    Some years ago, when DSLRs had little resolution, smaller bit depth and noisy high ISO, high end fashion shooters (which is not the whole market but a good part of it) had little choice if they wanted to produce (digital) high IQ with high resolution. Lots of them worked with MF and crop 1.3 digibacks (H-31, P30/+, P21/+ and the like). Exactly these guys today are very well served with the constantly improving high end DSLRs and to a huge part they are already lost for the MF market. For this core target group an S2 maybe could have been a no brainer 2 years ago when they all were asking for decent LCDs, clean high ISO, decent LCDs, AF performance and decent LCDs… and whatever. But today it's not only an LCD and in camera processing they are asking for: there is multi point AF, extremely good high ISO, blazing high frame rates, live view, video and many more features that set DSLRs apart from MF cameras. They are asking for features as IQ is already up to the task for their jobs. Today even high end architecture photographers take DSLRs with the new TS lenses into account. Waiting for the 1Ds-MK IV.
    Even in the current situation an ultra highres DSLR like the S2 still could have a very strong position in the market - but probably not with single point AF, without live view, without clean high ISO, with the requirement of a tripod and at that price.
    Now the S2 is obviously not a replacement for a DLSR for many photographers due to the missing features.
    But on the other hand IQ itself is not really noticeably better than existing MF solutions. I would have expected images from the S2 with the 70mm that are roughly comparable to a 39MP back with a Digitar 72mm. But by now I'd say it's nowhere near.
    So… 2 years too late, IMHO.
    Maybe I am not right - fine then!
    And if the S2 turns out to be a great success - even better then!
    But it would not be the first time that a single camera model blows away a traditional camera company.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher View Post
    Well yes I killed a LCD of my P65
    I killed my parquet when once my P45 dropped down. But the P45 was okay.

  21. #221
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Many thanks to Guy and Jack.A lot of work and a very informative and useful review.
    The S2 is not for me. I need a digital back to go with my AS Monolith.
    From LEICA I'm still waiting for an"adequate solution" for my R lenses.

  22. #222
    Wim van Velzen
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I got damaging moisture in my 132C back (Rollei continued without problems), so that I had to replace it. Was a lot of rain and away from the car without a proper bag...

    I will be more careful in the future!

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I'll quote myself with the following paragraph from my original summary on page 1, highlighting what I think is the salient point:

    ... the S2 fills a void by delivering MF quality in a {large} DSLR package. Kind of along the lines of the Pentax 6x7 when it came out, a DSLR with bigger, heavier glass, that isn't quite as fast shooting as conventional DSLR's, but where the benefits of image quality may outweigh those shortcomings for many shooters. And this is where I think the Leica S2's strongest suit is: delivering stunning image quality in a DSLR form-factor with DSLR conveniences, all in a package with the typically outstanding Leica build-quality.
    I think the answer is the camera shows a lot of promise for folks that want it for what it is, but for those that want what it isn't, then it doesn't...

    Thus it makes perfect sense to me that it's the right choice for Roger, David and David, maybe the right choice for Tim, Victor and Carsten, and not the right choice for Peter or Thomas. For others of us, like Marc, Guy and Jack, it simply isn't the right choice right now
    Jack
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I'd agree after a little edit
    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    And this is where I think the Leica S2's strongest suit is: delivering stunning image quality in a DSLR form-factor XXX all in a package with the typically outstanding Leica build-quality.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I thought I covered the XXX's in the preceeding sentence, "where the benefits of image quality may outweigh those shortcomings," but I'll grant you your caveat.
    Jack
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    I thought I covered the XXX's in the preceeding sentence, "where the benefits of image quality may outweigh those shortcomings," but I'll grant you your caveat.
    thank you

    BTW: what about Capture Integration's tests? Do they show similar results than yours?

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    I'm ready for a bloody mary not sure about anyone else. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    thank you

    BTW: what about Capture Integration's tests? Do they show similar results than yours?
    It's been a very busy week for us, but we plan on posting tests towards the end of the month.

    With comparisons we try not to draw (or at least publicly state) our own conclusions but rather post the information and let everyone make up their own mind.

    Doug

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by dougpetersonci View Post
    With comparisons we try not to draw (or at least publicly state) our own conclusions but rather post the information and let everyone make up their own mind.
    quite understandable!
    Sounds very good.
    RAW files?

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    For others of us, like Marc, Guy and Jack, it simply isn't the right choice right now
    Ooooh Jack.... that's the sort of thing I found myself saying about the cube, right up until the moment I was assimilated!

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    Ooooh Jack.... that's the sort of thing I found myself saying about the cube, right up until the moment I was assimilated!
    Exactly, and precisely why I never say "never"
    Jack
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I recall a story of a guy who dropped for the briefest of moments (<1s) an MFDB camera in the ocean, pulled it out, and it was dead. I think it was an H3D but it doesn't really matter which it was; weather sealing would have helped that guy. I will try to find the story again, but really, it doesn't matter. It is beyond dispute that there is a use for weather sealing. Look how many people have pined for weather sealing in the 5D, yet how many have actually died? It is more about peace of mind and focusing on photography rather than towels and umbrellas.

    Guy Harrison is probably right in that most people will never need that and it won't make any difference, but Leicas have never been about most people, and there will be someone out there for whom this matters. It is an open question if it a real niche or just two guys, but at least the mind can imagine it.
    Let's get one of the dealers to drop the S2 into the ocean ... inquiring minds want to know


    The only real peace of mind is a good comprehensive business insurance policy ... maybe.

    -Marc

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Re. weather sealing: I'm not interested in the S2 at this time (for many specific reasons), but I would upgrade my Phase kit (assuming it was financially timely for me) if a weather-sealed model was shipped. Even body and back only would be of interest, hoping that lenses would come along in time. Still, I routinely use a 5D in rain with a handkerchief draped over it (though I carry rain covers too) and never had a problem. And blowing dust can be a nuisance. A little more peace-of-mind would be worth it to me.

    The S2's weather-sealing is one of the stand-out features to me.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Allyn View Post

    The S2's weather-sealing is one of the stand-out features to me.
    I agree. And just think what we'd all be saying if Leica hadn't weatherproofed it!

    ,
    Jack
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    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    I'll quote myself with the following paragraph from my original summary on page 1, highlighting what I think is the salient point:



    I think the answer is the camera shows a lot of promise for folks that want it for what it is, but for those that want what it isn't, then it doesn't...

    Thus it makes perfect sense to me that it's the right choice for Roger, David and David, maybe the right choice for Tim, Victor and Carsten, and not the right choice for Peter or Thomas. For others of us, like Marc, Guy and Jack, it simply isn't the right choice right now
    After stepping into the H system, getting some minor experience with it and starting to really like it, after also knowing the Phase system and its great possibilities, after reading a lot of reviews about the S system and also playing a bit with the S2 for me the S system is NO LONGER an option. At least not for the next few years to come.

    But well - never say never again

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Allyn View Post
    A little more peace-of-mind would be worth it to me.
    Let me quote differently than Jack here, and re-emphasize that probably even if we all bought S2s tomorrow (and had them delivered...), probably none of us would ever need the weather sealing, but nearly all of us could use the peace of mind.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Carsten, I tend to enjoy (for some reason) putting myself in places and positions that might yield splashes, drenching, etc. I tend to get too close to incoming tides on beaches; I like shooting in drippy forests; and in fact, I almost always carry chest-waders in by car when out and about for shooting. One of my shots that gets a fair bit of attention was shot with tripod 3/4 immersed and me in ice-cold spring run-off above my waist. The results aren't necessarily any better than those taken out of a car window, but hey!, it's a fun challenge for me. That said, my gear is in great shape due to reasonable care in handling.

    When the S2 was first announced (and in the earliest discussions) I seriously thought it might be something that I should keep an eye on, but as time has progressed since then, it's much less interesting to me... though an open mind is always prudent IMO.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    An update on slower shutter speed performance from the S2:

    As it turns out, I did a set of exposure sweep of the Passport under tungsten light so Capture One could use it for generating an initial tungsten profile. The news is that this sweep of exposures ranged from 1 second up through 1/60th in order to fully clip blacks and fully blow whites while the camera was tripod mounted. Anyway, this set obviously includes the typically problematic shutter speeds of 1/8th, 1/15th and 1/30th. Unfortunately I did not use mirror up for these, but at least I can share some preliminary findings on mirror/shutter slap.

    I have to say that both 1/30th and 1/15th look very good. However, 1/8th and 1/4 show evidence of mirror slap, being on par or slightly less evident than the Phase at 1/15th and 1/8th. So while it appears the S2 may have a one-stop advantage in mirror-slap, it still shows up in the image over at least two shutter speeds. Not sure what to make of this since it wasn't a controlled test for slap, but thought I'd add it as data for your consideration...
    Jack
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    An update on slower shutter speed performance from the S2:

    As it turns out, I did a set of exposure sweep of the Passport under tungsten light so Capture One could use it for generating an initial tungsten profile. The news is that this sweep of exposures ranged from 1 second up through 1/60th in order to fully clip blacks and fully blow whites while the camera was tripod mounted. Anyway, this set obviously includes the typically problematic shutter speeds of 1/8th, 1/15th and 1/30th. Unfortunately I did not use mirror up for these, but at least I can share some preliminary findings on mirror/shutter slap.

    I have to say that both 1/30th and 1/15th look very good. However, 1/8th and 1/4 show evidence of mirror slap, being on par or slightly less evident than the Phase at 1/15th and 1/8th. So while it appears the S2 may have a one-stop advantage in mirror-slap, it still shows up in the image over at least two shutter speeds. Not sure what to make of this since it wasn't a controlled test for slap, but thought I'd add it as data for your consideration...
    Is there no function for pre release of the mirror - say 50ms or 100ms before the shutter fires? I can do this with my H3D and have it always on to 50ms so I get lot of great shots with 1/8th or 1/15th etc.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    Is there no function for pre release of the mirror - say 50ms or 100ms before the shutter fires? I can do this with my H3D and have it always on to 50ms so I get lot of great shots with 1/8th or 1/15th etc.
    Peter,

    While there is (currently) no function for a mirror pre-delay, setting the camera to 2 sec self-timer automatically pre-locks the mirror as soon as the shutter is depressed. On the S2, 2 seconds is plenty of time for any mirror slap to subside.

    David
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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by dfarkas View Post
    Peter,

    While there is (currently) no function for a mirror pre-delay, setting the camera to 2 sec self-timer automatically pre-locks the mirror as soon as the shutter is depressed. On the S2, 2 seconds is plenty of time for any mirror slap to subside.

    David
    David, whilst I think it's known here that I am more favourably inclined towards the S2 than many, even I baulk at that! MR over at LL found that even on a very good tripod/head rig, at least six seconds was needed between MUP and shutter for all vibrations in the rig to subside (with an AFDIII and I think a P45+ maybe a 65+). I would guess that 4 seconds would be required on the S2 for its weak spot speeds, which Jack identifies above.

    FWIW Jack's findings mirror (excuse the pun) my own intuition from an hour with the S2: that it's mirror and shutter are worth an extra stop of smoothness.

    Best

    Tim
    Last edited by tashley; 18th December 2009 at 14:26.

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    After stepping into the H system, getting some minor experience with it and starting to really like it, after also knowing the Phase system and its great possibilities, after reading a lot of reviews about the S system and also playing a bit with the S2 for me the S system is NO LONGER an option. At least not for the next few years to come.

    But well - never say never again
    enjoy your hasselblad! it is a wonderful system, with GREAT lenses. although they are only underrated japanese tech their performance is at least equal to what i have seen from the leica tests.
    peter

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by dfarkas View Post
    While there is (currently) no function for a mirror pre-delay, setting the camera to 2 sec self-timer automatically pre-locks the mirror as soon as the shutter is depressed.
    2 sec MLU for handheld shooting?

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    MR over at LL found that even on a very good tripod/head rig, at least six seconds was needed between MUP and shutter for all vibrations in the rig to subside (with an AFDIII and I think a P45+ maybe a 65+).
    But I think that only applies to very long lenses...?
    I bet in conjunction with a wood tripod the time frame is much shorter.

    The MF companies should take a look at the mirror design of the Sony A900...

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    But I think that only applies to very long lenses...?
    I bet in conjunction with a wood tripod the time frame is much shorter.

    The MF companies should take a look at the mirror design of the Sony A900...
    leica is still an optics company struggling to enter digital technology. today i took my M9 out in cambridge (UK) at about freezing temperature to shoot the colleges under snow cover. i took about 100 pics and had to restart the camera (battery out and back in.....very convenient with the retrostyled baseplate...) about 10 times. that is once for every 10 images.
    leica would be well advised to find a competent partner for firmware and hardwiring. i am amazed what can go wrong in a 5000.- euro camera...
    i have never-repeat- never had similar issues with nikon and hasselblad. this is a clear indicator for me what the S2 will be like. i don't even want to think about what may go wrong there. murphy will have prime time.
    to be fair though, some of the M9 shots came out great in tonality, resolution etc....
    please nikon, give me f1.4 lenses....---)))
    peter

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by markowich View Post
    murphy will have prime time.


    please nikon, give me f1.4 lenses....---)))
    what about the Zeiss lenses?

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by markowich View Post
    enjoy your hasselblad! it is a wonderful system, with GREAT lenses. although they are only underrated japanese tech their performance is at least equal to what i have seen from the leica tests.
    peter
    Thanks Peter - I am already enjoying!

    And yes, I am aware that I am working with sub second level Japanese manufactured glass

    But you know what? I enjoy the results, they easily hold up against Leica glass at least if you use the automatic lens corrections in Phocus

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by dfarkas View Post
    Peter,

    While there is (currently) no function for a mirror pre-delay, setting the camera to 2 sec self-timer automatically pre-locks the mirror as soon as the shutter is depressed. On the S2, 2 seconds is plenty of time for any mirror slap to subside.

    David
    David,

    I am talking about severl 10 or 100 Milliseconds for Mirror Pre Release in the Hasselblad for handheld shooting. This is a standard function you can easily program in the H cameras and my test have shown (at least with my photography style) that using this wisely allows me pretty sharp shots down to 1/8th or 1/15th or 1/30th depending on the glass I use

    And the amount of alcohol I have in my blood - more is better

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post


    what about the Zeiss lenses?
    the reviews i have read about zeiss on nikon were not really raving....and of course MF only...
    peter

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    Re: Leica S2 Review by Guy Mancuso and Jack Flesher/ GetDPI.com

    Quote Originally Posted by markowich View Post
    the reviews i have read about zeiss on nikon were not really raving...
    I see.

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