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Thread: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Well as I promised early on when getting the 160 that i had my semi annual gig to shoot with sensor plus. Seems like I have a new back every NY show so why change now. This time I had the back i have been after is the new IQ series 160 and shooting sensor plus at 15mpx is just about perfect for me and after a week of shooting with it, the DSLR 35mm cams seem to be even more remote in having. Now I came from the P40+ which was and is a awesome back but obviously it does not give me the feedback that the IQ series does with the new focus mask and other LCD features.

    Here this time with the IQ I had everything on the back. I always had the focus mask on at all times but left the highlight warning tool off the main preview window and just in the tools. This way i could only see image with focus tool on in the main preview window. This was just a awesome combination as my images where almost instant to pop on the LCD and the focus mask followed it immediately. Now I am going out of a limb here and just flat out say it. This maybe the fastest sensor plus back I have shot to date including my smaller P40+, the IQ 140 no doubt will be even faster. I know that is a big claim but as you will see in the images the space a model had to walk the runway I could with a 300mm lens on my monopod actually shoot about 5 frames off with almost instant previews and focus mask.

    Now this is pretty much unheard of with MF as most of us know and for me I do not shoot machine gun style and settled in on about 2 or 3 frames per model. Also with the 300mm using the continuous focus mode which I have done before really keeps up quite well and I missed very few images.

    Admittedly and not to boast I am a very good shooter and have been down this road before so I know exactly what I am doing in this situation but even so my takers where many and my misses where very few and being able to watch the focus mask the whole time was simply amazing to watch and see exactly my pinpoints . On the 300mm lens I had my focus mask setting at about 51 which gave me just enough focus points without overpowering the screen and enough to know I was nailing it. Now all the 300mm shots are pretty much at ISO 800 since the lighting crew under my direction ( i run the production booth too) gave me just enough stage wash and runway lights without overpowering the stage to keep things at ISO 800 at around 1/250 at F7.1 working off a monopod this seemed to give me enough speed and enough DOF to cover my needs quite well. Now i wanted to get to about F7.1 to make up for the bigger sensor I have now. With the P40+ I could get away with 5.6 or so. So yes you do have to take it on the chin a little as you get into the FF sensors with DOF. Knowing that going in I had the lighting crew fine tune me right in where I needed to be..

    Now on the first part of the show and images you will see first I am actually handheld the whole time with 55, 80 and 110 LS glass and shooting at ISO 1600 because here with this section of the show the light varies a whole bunch as it is not stage wash or runway lights on a constant basis but movers and tungsten lights going on at different times. So many times the light is very low and going to 1600 is the only choice you have. One may ask right now would a Canon/Nikon help here. Sure you could get to ISO3200 but as far as shooting the cams not a chance and not much different in holding a DSLR over a DF and this is where many folks just don't understand that in truth the MF DF is actually easier to handhold. Reason being is I have a much wider base under the camera for my left hand for support. In a sense it is actually balanced better. Now some may argue that point but go try it is my suggestion. With the lenses i am working with they are relatively short and the balance is more on the body than the lenses, so in essence the weight gets pushed towards the back which a big area underneath actually helps with balance.

    Obviously still need to keep your shutter speeds up there to match your lens focal length or faster but it can get done and done well. Now all these images the WB is set to Tungsten which we all know is the worst culprit with regards to noise and really not much difference than my P40+ although my files are bigger but ISO 800 is just extremely good and 1600 even in the deepest shadows holds up extremely well and if there is any noise it would be here in that area but areas that are well exposed and lit well it does a excellent job with the high ISO 1600 images. i did not even try ISO 3200 but fom test I would call it okay nothing to write home about unless you used some special noise software to correct things which in this case i have no time for that and everything processed in C1 with the ISO 1600 images Luminance at 25, Color at 55, Single pixel at 27, Surface Grain at 25 seemed to work well here. For 800 I went with more default numbers.
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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    So lets get to some images all of these posted on this post are ISO 1600 with WB set for Tungsten and all handheld with either 55,80 or 110. I will post aperture and shutter speed on each one as well

    1/125th at F7.1 focused right on second girl from right. 55mm lens




    1/100th at F5.6 with 110mm lens and cropped in a little.
    This one is a touch bluer as the lighting guys used the mover light on this which is a little more balanced for daylight. He should be using these more for effects than the actually lighting of people.




    1/320 at F6.3 with the 55mm not cropped here. Here movement is the key as these are dancers so the shutter speeds get the bump



    1/250 F5.6 with 80mm



    1/250 F7.1 with 110mm



    1/320 F7.1 with 110mm



    1/320 F7.1 with 110mm




    This is just a sample of the ISO 1600 shots and i shot around 2 thousand or so of these images in about 3 hours on one battery on IQ 160.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Moving on to the ISO 800 shots these are ALL shot with a 300mm lens on a monopod with continuous focus settings. Mostly everything here is shot at 1/320 at about 7.1 so I will just post the images as they are without adding the shutter speed data and aperture as they are all in that range.










    Shot many more here and running out of time to get this up and maybe post a few more later but here I might have have shot another 2500 images and not one glitch , burp or i am not going to work right now from either the back or body. Needless to say i was thrilled with that and no struggling for me. My only thing I could use is the V grip doing all these verticals is I have to wrap my hand around the top of the DF to shoot and with arthritis in my hands to begin with it gets to hurt after a while and need to take breaks with shaking my hands out. The V grip here would help that a lot as my hand would not be bending around the body.

    Thanks and hope this helps some folks.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    New Member TomSteele's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Hi guy thanks a bunch for putting these up very interesting to look at what mp does the iq 60 come in at in sensor plus?

    how did you find your hit rate with the DF's af

    Thanks,

    Tom

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Wow. Just got my IQ140 and hope to try out the Sensor+ 800 and 1600 tonight. Hoping it's as good as the IQ160.

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    New Member TomSteele's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Hi padams would love to see some of the iq140 love seeing real world shots hope you like it

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    Senior Member stephengilbert's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    The IQ 160 is 15 mpx in sensor plus.

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by padams View Post
    Wow. Just got my IQ140 and hope to try out the Sensor+ 800 and 1600 tonight. Hoping it's as good as the IQ160.
    Wow your the first I heard getting the 140 congrats.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by TomSteele View Post
    Hi guy thanks a bunch for putting these up very interesting to look at what mp does the iq 60 come in at in sensor plus?

    how did you find your hit rate with the DF's af

    Thanks,

    Tom
    Hi Tom hit rate was extremely good but you also need to be careful. Most of my 300 shots hit right around the chest area which the good news is right about the same plane as the face. So if you can keep that focus points on the same plane your good. Would I like those focus points wider you bet as it would Hit more towards the face on verticals. Maybe my biggest nit with tHe DF. Hoping next model they can spread the focus points out and give us some control to pick which one like the 35mm cams out there. Frankly in real world maybe the biggest difference between the systems on the function end. This I would like to see change.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    iPad typing sorry
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by padams View Post
    Wow. Just got my IQ140 and hope to try out the Sensor+ 800 and 1600 tonight. Hoping it's as good as the IQ160.
    Should be right on par with it since they use the same sensor. My old P40 was very nice like these but 10mpx which frankly preforms better than the number. I gve these Phase backs a extra 5 mpx on sensor plus since the act so nice with processing and you can easily uprez these in C1 which you should try going to like 125 or 150 percent. It's very good
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Subscriber gogopix's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by stephengilbert View Post
    The IQ 160 is 15 mpx in sensor plus.
    Well, it is actually a lot better than that, maybe not in fine detail, but Sensor plus is a mini matrix of R,B and 2G. In a foveon world thay would claim 30-40 MP

    A 15MP bayer sensor has interpolation for the colors; Sensor plus is actually measuring all colors and getting VERY good luminance data from the greens. I don't know what the equivalence is, but is will certaily be better than a bayer 15MP sensor.

    Guy, could you provide a few 100% crops? I think it will bear out that there is excellent definition.

    An interesting test would be to use two lenses with a factor of 2 FL difference. Shoot one in regular, one in Sensor plus then compare 100% crops. I will bet there is better overall definition (maybe even resolution) in the Sensor Plus shot.

    Victor

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Sure Victor let me rework some of that. I actually used these from the show directly than downsized them even more than the jpeg show files. Let me get a couple directly from the raws into Tif than into some crops. This way it will show the real file from the beginning.

    I'm actually taking a bad way to post these from jpeg to jpeg. Which is not something you normally would be doing. Actually the show files are 3000 pixels wide than downgraded here at 1200. Yuk but they still look great. LOL

    This is what MF is all about the robustness of the file and how you can mangle this stuff up and still looks good.

    Also I agree with you Victor I give this back a extra 5 mpx and call it 20 mpx when it comes down to the look of the file. I know very unscientific comment but its more about the file than the science to me at least.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Guy, I have no experience at the kind of shooting you have displayed, but learned a lot from your posts; your images look great. My only experience with this kind of lighting has been pictures taken on stage at school of my grand children. They were all taken with the IQ180 at 1600 ISO hand held and they turned out very well. It seems to me the sensor + has justified my selling my DSLRs.....too much stuff to carry around! Charles
    Last edited by cs750; 10th August 2011 at 14:59. Reason: typo

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    Senior Member thrice's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    So what you're saying Guy, is I should replace my medium and large format cameras and my M9 with an IQ160, tech camera and SLR?

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Yup. LOL

    But no, actually the M9 has a certain place where the MF maybe does not do as well or lets say more difficult to work with like street and travel. I actually would love to have a M9 at my disposal for the times like that or when I want to go light. My problem is the M9 has its own limitations with long glass and i tried this with 2 M8's and it was difficult. But it will replace your Canon/Nikon/Sony rigs for the most part even though I still have a Sony it certainly plays second fiddle to the MF. Really if your just a hobbyist and you don't shoot sports or stuff that may require that kind of speed than sensor plus is very very good at replacing it.

    Now obviously this all depends on what you shoot. There are for example many MF shooters here on the forum that have their tech cams and a M9. Than you have some still sitting on there Nikons or Canons for certain things. One thing is security and value taking out a 50k rig with you to certain events can be risky . One reason I still have my Sony on hand is if it gets destroyed , stolen or lost i'm not out a lot of money and bigger issue they can be replaced at Best Buy or the like in about 20 minutes or so.

    The Df and sensor plus though can handle a lot of 35mm chores that many MF systems cannot which is go high ISO and keep a decent size file for speed of processing and also speed of system. It is faster shooting sensor plus.

    I'm able to get away with this setup but maybe others are not and still holding out with their 35mm which i understand that as well. The key here is it has value and not a gimmick as some would think. But the end of the day it is what you shoot that will help you decide if you can do without a 35mm or you just can't. Nice to have these options and as you can see it also has some juice behind it and they look great.

    Now just for example because I know what Bob, Terry and Jack have is their 180 backs and Bob and Jack have DF's and tech cams plus they use Pana 4/3rds stuff so their 35mm have gone away. Terry on the other hand has a tech cam and the 4/3rds stuff plus she has a lot of smaller cams for fun but she no longer has her big Sony cam. So just those 3 alone they have left the 35mm cams behind and moved into 4/3rds and MF only. Again for these 3 folks it is about what they shoot and don't shoot to make these kinds of gear decisions. I can still use a Sony on occasion but now i would like a tech cam like a Cambo or Alpa TC. Problem is my business does not really call for one but want it anyway. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Subscriber gogopix's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by thrice View Post
    So what you're saying Guy, is I should replace my medium and large format cameras and my M9 with an IQ160, tech camera and SLR?
    except for the SLR, that's whereI'm going!

    Victor

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Sure Victor let me rework some of that. I actually used these from the show directly than downsized them even more than the jpeg show files. Let me get a couple directly from the raws into Tif than into some crops. This way it will show the real file from the beginning.
    ......Also I agree with you Victor I give this back a extra 5 mpx and call it 20 mpx when it comes down to the look of the file. I know very unscientific comment but its more about the file than the science to me at least.
    Photography should be more about the eyes than the files. A 5MP bump sounds conservative, but for sure those images of yours I'll bet match the look at least of a 20MP.

    And yes, a close view of one ot two of those shots would be great (can I pick the ones? and where to crop?

    Victor

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Go for it. Hope I nailed it. Lol
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Omg Guy, I love u! I've ordered a 160 with the possibility of exactly this type of shooting in mind, more childrrens shows than fashion, but still it's great to see this possibility. I have to say though, the lighting there is pretty good!

    During my testing of a 160, I often saw ghosts of lights in the frame that reminded me of early m8 days. Did you see any such artefacts?

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    No not really only if I went completely directly at some lighting and even than it looked good. See if I can find some to show you in a little bit here. Getting everyone ready for school or work soon here.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Btw you love the 160 it really is a great back . The sensor is a proven one with the P65 plus and many happy campers with that back. Now the UI just is kick *** awesome to work with. The IQ series IMHO is maybe the best interface I have seen or useful to the shooter in any cam.
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    ...keep your shutter speeds up there to match your lens focal length or faster...
    What do you think are the prospects of someone coming up with an "image stabilized" MF lens or sensor to add another stop or two?

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by schuster View Post
    What do you think are the prospects of someone coming up with an "image stabilized" MF lens or sensor to add another stop or two?
    Very small.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Here Victor lets try this one. Gets a little noisy in the shadows but my guess at least 4 stops difference. Pretty much expected but still holds detail pretty good



    crop

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    I do have noise reduction on Lum 25, color 55, single pixel at 27, surface at 25 and fine grain at 7. I have yet to really see what is truly the best settings here on this sensor at 1600 so someone may have a better setting.
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Most of my 300 shots hit right around the chest area which the good news is right about the same plane as the face.
    At least for the flat-chested and/or male models...
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I do have noise reduction on Lum 25, color 55, single pixel at 27, surface at 25 and fine grain at 7. I have yet to really see what is truly the best settings here on this sensor at 1600 so someone may have a better setting.
    Guy
    Pretty modest numbers... for NR
    this is a either a better C1 process or the sensor plus is doing a better job on the IQ. I have not seen this on the P65+
    Thx for the exhibit...

    ...now latest from my vendor is "23 sept" for the IQ180 in Contax mount.. but I do assume he means 2011!

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Guy nice examples of Sensor+ in a real world scenario. You should definitely try to use the V-Grip next time .
    Sorry we did not get a chance to catch up when you were in NY.
    Lance
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    Subscriber Member kit laughlin's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Guy: your argument made elsewhere re. a good MF back replacing a DSLR kit is looking more and more persuasive, to be sure.

    Cheers and I will email separately about the AZ trip (dates confirmed today). Kit

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Why shoot a runway event with a MF digital camera in the +mode that gives you a "smallish" file size.

    One would get better results with a 35mm DSLR at iso200 or 400 so using image stabilization in the same light. You would have faster frame rates, faster focus, better color and less of a backache

    Interesting test none the less.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by kit laughlin View Post
    Guy: your argument made elsewhere re. a good MF back replacing a DSLR kit is looking more and more persuasive, to be sure.
    I would hardly call this a case for replacing a 35mm DSLR

    Runway is a clear case for using a high end 35mm DSLR

    Incidently the Phase one and Mamiya digitals are DSLR cameras.

    Means digital single lens reflex. Comes from SLR single lens reflex as opposed to TLR twin lens reflex.

    However that the high ISO mode on these backs can be useful in a crunch. Say you are shooting on location and one particular spot on the location needs more ISO to pull off the shot and big enlargement is not needed.

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    Senior Member stephengilbert's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Gee, Fred, think there's any chance Kit knows the meaning of "DSLR?"

    After four years here, he's probably seen the term before, don't you think?

    Wecome

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    Subscriber Member kit laughlin's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Stephen, that made me laugh. Yeah, I've been around the block a time or two, and have actually owned and used (and made money from) SLRs, DSLRs, TLRs, EVILs, and a bunch of other devices with other acronyms; the one thing they have in common they all make pictures.

    @Fred: the context for my comment back to Guy was a long (even pre-getDPI) dialogue between GM and myself (and others) about gear in general (we both tend to buy and sell as the means of trying any new stuff rather than reading reviews) and in particular the flexibility that the sensor+ mode allows the MF DSLR user these days. I have been a commercial photog. for 30+ years (it's my other day job).

    Welcome to the board, in any case; lost of interesting stuff here.

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by FredBGG View Post
    I would hardly call this a case for replacing a 35mm DSLR

    Runway is a clear case for using a high end 35mm DSLR

    Incidently the Phase one and Mamiya digitals are DSLR cameras.

    Means digital single lens reflex. Comes from SLR single lens reflex as opposed to TLR twin lens reflex.

    However that the high ISO mode on these backs can be useful in a crunch. Say you are shooting on location and one particular spot on the location needs more ISO to pull off the shot and big enlargement is not needed.
    There is a old saying. Proof is in the pudding. The point here is if you already have a MF DSLR and sensor plus you may not actually need to go spend another 12k on a Canon system. More about true needs here. I don't need a Canon with this system I have it takes care of my needs. Obviously we all have diffrent needs and frankly I am not a big fan of 35mm and never have been. It was usually a case of being stuck with one. Matter of choice and no Fred sorry there is no such thing as a clear case winner for runway. Look at the files and tell me that again. I have shot all the other systems doing this and nothing is remotely close to the quality. Been shooting this same event for 15 years. It's not about hard work And obstacles it's about results that is what we get paid for.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

  36. #36
    Subscriber Member kit laughlin's Avatar
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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Guy, agree 100%, and totally agree too re. reducing systems where possible. While I am away, for example, I am using Jack's old GH-2 with 14–140 plus digital recorder exclusively for both to-camera video (educational and promotional clips, Vimeo and YT) AND the stills I need to explain aspects of the gym setups I am teaching in. Quality as good as the Sony? No way, but good enough for both needs (and I was able to leave the pro. video camera at home, as well as the Sony system, so saved myself at least 15lbs weight!).

    Now, in your case, you went the MF route, and you definitely get results that are superior to 135, in both your commercial and your runway work (the files above).

    Me, I needed the video capacity, so have gone another route when I am spending so much time away from the studio (where the Sony and the lights await!). It's all about getting the job done in the easiest/simplest fashion or, as you say,

    It's not about hard work And obstacles it's about results that is what we get paid for.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    There is a old saying. Proof is in the pudding. The point here is if you already have a MF DSLR and sensor plus you may not actually need to go spend another 12k on a Canon system. More about true needs here. I don't need a Canon with this system I have it takes care of my needs. Obviously we all have diffrent needs and frankly I am not a big fan of 35mm and never have been. It was usually a case of being stuck with one. Matter of choice and no Fred sorry there is no such thing as a clear case winner for runway. Look at the files and tell me that again. I have shot all the other systems doing this and nothing is remotely close to the quality. Been shooting this same event for 15 years. It's not about hard work And obstacles it's about results that is what we get paid for.
    I looked at the images and the quality is very good, but not better than shooting with a current high end 35mm DSLR.

    Here are some examples:





    The ergonomics and speed of a high end 35mm DSLR combined with the same hard work will get the same results, if not better thanks to using lower ISO with image stabilization. Above all fast frame rate will give the client (the designer) better options regarding how well the cloths fall appear in movement. The use of a shallow depth of field zoom will also permit getting many different compositions all at full frame.

    While I am a strong advocate for larger formats they have their limits.
    Personally I prefer to shoot film on MF as it gives me the option to shoot larger medium format SLR such as the Fuji GX680 and get even more of that optical look that larger format lenses have.

    I find that 35mm DSLR cameras are reaching quality levels, especially with a few particular lenses, that for nearly all practical purposes are up there with MF digital. At the same time medium format digital is stuck below the 645 format all be it with huge MP counts. While the Phase cameras are extraordinary they still cannot produce the optical look of larger formats.

    I do agree with you that the sensor plus mode is a great option for a MF owner that does not want to use a 35mm DSLR, but it's no replacement IMHO.

    Much in the same way that I do not think that MF DSLR is a replacement for 6x8cm film or larger film. Two different things.

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    Re: Phase One IQ 160 Sensor Plus with High ISO

    Fred are you talking about 35mm film? I think that your demo images display tremendous ability and experience and talent, but they appear to lack the level of detail in Guy's shots. I suspect the photos you take with an iphone will look better than the ones I take with my betterlight, but that is about the photographer, not the tools.

    I don't think even with Blue Fire film I could match the H3D-200MS in detail. Is that what you meant, or simply as a fashion photographer at a runway event?

    Guy thanks for your sample photos. Not to make you look silly on the job, but what about using a stroboframe type flash bracket, so you can go vertical without aggravating your joints?

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