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Phase One Feature Update 8

Paul2660

Well-known member
It's been over 2 years since the announcement of the 4150, and it's a strange issue to me that Phase One can't get the "power share" feature to work as it did on the 3100. Net on the 3100, the back could pull power from the XF battery, thus you could get by in the field with way fewer batteries, since the XF needs so little power to operate. With the 4150, all you get is the ability to pull the battery from the IQ4 and not turn off the IQ4 since it can briefly grab power from the XF. I realize the backs operate on different platforms, and one is Linux based, IQ4 but to me it should be a simple thing to allow, but since it's been 2 years it may be another issue that will never be resolved due to design of the back.

And yes he IQ4 is hot back, the 3100 was also, but for sure the IQ4 gets hotter, and hotter, faster.

Paul C
 

anwarp

Active member
I agree with you Paul.

To me the IQ3 was warm, the IQ4 is hot!

Yes, Phase One need to fix the power share. I can't imagine that there's is a hardware issue. As a passively cooled device I expect the power envelope is not a lot more than the IQ3 series. So the power that needs to come over the small spring loaded pins is not much.

At the end of the day, there is a physical interface between the body and the back. And some sort of command that says power me up! Linux vs whatever other system the XF has should not really matter - unless the limitation is hardware.

For now my strategy will be to cycle the batteries through the back and then use them in the XF. Hopefully, the manual power sharing will help extend the battery life. Especially with older batteries where the voltage will drop more quickly under the heavier load of the back.

Anwar
 

Paul2660

Well-known member
Not to mention, the age old problem of the IQ4 showing the battery is to low to use when there is around 25% still remaining. I had hoped this would be fixed with update 8, but same problem. When the battery starts to show the lowest setting where you should have only 10% remaining, you have around 25%. Sure 15% is not much but in reality it for me is around 25 or so more exposures.

Paul C
 

earburner

Member
Not to mention, the age old problem of the IQ4 showing the battery is to low to use when there is around 25% still remaining. I had hoped this would be fixed with update 8, but same problem. When the battery starts to show the lowest setting where you should have only 10% remaining, you have around 25%. Sure 15% is not much but in reality it for me is around 25 or so more exposures.

Paul C
Just a little note on charge capacity, The Phase One batteries do not measure the amount of charge transferred into and out of the battery, it is calculated from the output voltage under load or charge (there is no state of charge chip). When the battery is below X voltage (this is normally a mix between depth of discharge considerations and not damaging the battery) the camera shuts down. The problem you have is the camera load on the battery is not constant and the internal resistance of the battery in the last 30% falls off dramatically, meaning when you press the shutter (which is likely to be a high load moment) the cell voltage is likely drop below the cut off voltage and your camera shuts down... so when designing the very power hungry IQ4 150 this becomes a bigger problem, so the shutdown voltage is set higher the older backs. The last thing you want is to take that award winning shot, for then the back shuts down and doesn't save your image to flash... The other problem is the older/more discharge cycles/rate of charges/discharges, the worse the internal resistance gets. In my view P1 may have pushed the battery a bit too far and should have move away from the current battery...
 

Phase V

Member
Is there any statement from Phase One for releasing an update that makes things even worse?
The more i watch this disaster the more i get the feeling there is something fundamently wrong in
the hardware that can´t be overcome with firmware fumbling.
 
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Ray Harrison

Active member
Is there any statement from Phase One for releasing an update that makes things even worse?
The more i watch this disaster the more i get the feeling there is something fundamently wrong in
the hardware that can´t be overcome with firmware fumbling.
For me, recently coming up from a Credo 80 to an IQ4 and starting out on the feature update 7 firmware, the latest offers some markedly positive benefits that I'm glad to have, including ad hoc wifi, CFexpress (consistency across my other main system), adjustable grids in live view, a bit more performant XF and some of the XT improvements, etc.

The one real headache in the release is the power consumption, for me. I can get around it by hauling around more batteries/packs, but it can get a bit tedious, for sure. In itself, it's not a show-stopper, just super annoying. My concern is less that they released a piece of firmware that has demonstrated worse power consumption issues - it happens - but more the time it takes for them to release new updates to the firmware itself. They did a complete rewrite of the code base and built new innards and I think on the whole that's positive, but it's not clear they had the skillsets in-house needed to make that transition at scale and it shows. That, coupled with all of the disruptive internal changes of splitting the companies and changing ownership (oh yeah and pandemic), doesn't add up to a recipe for corporate responsiveness. While I'd like a reasonably quick service pack to tighten up this initial release, at least for things like power consumption, I'm certainly not holding my breath.
 

Paul2660

Well-known member
I have finally been able to work with my IQ4 a bit, and with the update no8. It appears to me that the battery life is really about the same, with the IQ4 and Feature update 8, For sure it's not any worse. "Earburner's" post makes good sense to me, i.e. the reason that the battery is showing below 25% on the back, (blinking white battery icon), yet when you put the battery in the charger it will show between 20 and 25% remaining.

In my work with the tech camera, I use a lot of live view, both pre and post shot, so I am pushing the battery quite a bit. Yesterday, I was able to get 200 Plus exposures with a lot of zooming into 100% pre and post shot and the battery was just starting to blink. (note when placed on the charger, it showed 20%). So for me that is about the norm for this back.

The IQ3100, with XF, could last much longer since it was able to pull power from the battery in the XF, which DOES not happen with the IQ4, all you get is the ability to switch the battery out in the IQ4, without powering it off. I just would like an answer as to why this same process is not possible with the IQ4? Phase never seems willing to answer any of these questions.

It seems that the new problem is more in a tethered environment, where in the past the IQ4 battery would charge with the back plugged into either a external battery pack or a PC/Mac, which now appears not to happen. As it worked once, it should be possible make it work again, and odds are it is something that was missed in the testing of the firmware.

As for timelines of updates, fixes, etc. and the fact that Phase One and Capture One have been separated, it's hard for me to believe that has caused a slow down. Firmware development should be possible anywhere. And yes I realize that it appears that Phase One and Capture One are separate, but IMO in reality they are still closely tied at the hip. If Capture One was totally separate, there is NO reason that they should not immediately support both Hasselblad and Lecia MF cameras, as that is just more revenue for them.


Paul C
 

Phase V

Member
The IQ3100, with XF, could last much longer since it was able to pull power from the battery in the XF, which DOES not happen with the IQ4, all you get is the ability to switch the battery out in the IQ4, without powering it off. I just would like an answer as to why this same process is not possible with the IQ4? Phase never seems willing to answer any of these questions.
My guess is that the IQ4 is drawing much more power and the XF just could not supply this internally without going damaged.
 

Ray Harrison

Active member
I'll have to poke around on my settings to see if I've got something silly set - I can't get anything like 200 exposures. Still learning my way around the back so my guess is pilot error on my part.
 

Paul2660

Well-known member
Ray, I went back and did a quick count, my range was actually 105 images on 1st day, but battery was 3/4 full, 2nd day it was 147 on a full battery, (older battery however 2 + years old). So my original number was off quite a bit, sorry about that. But the time shooting was around 1 1/2 hours 1st day and close to 2 hours 2nd day. I now have the Arca Rotaback adapter, so I no longer really ever turn off the back unless its for a lens change. Before I had to turn it off constantly, to rotate the back 90 degree (on tech camera).

With the IQ4 I had really hoped for a newer tech battery, with a higher millamp rating, which should last longer. The cells being used are still the older Canon Video camera design, and now are at least 6? 5? year old tech? Should not be that hard to have a battery designed around the same size footprint with a higher millamp rating. Happens all the time with other products.

That was always a nice feature old the older P45+ and P65 as you could use the larger Canon cells, since the battery did not fit into the enclosed pocket it does on the IQ backs.

Paul C
 
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Ray Harrison

Active member
Well, there has to be some incentive to get people to buy an IQ5...
True :). I would offer my advice to Phase though that having customers actually happy with an IQ4 is a better way to get them to upgrade to some future IQ5. In general I'm happy with it coming from a much older back but I'd love for them to get on a more solid footing before they'd crank out an IQ5. Either that to the "IQ5" needs to be truly mind blowing:).
 

buildbot

Active member
True :). I would offer my advice to Phase though that having customers actually happy with an IQ4 is a better way to get them to upgrade to some future IQ5. In general I'm happy with it coming from a much older back but I'd love for them to get on a more solid footing before they'd crank out an IQ5. Either that to the "IQ5" needs to be truly mind blowing:).
To that point, it would be awesome if they offered something like a just a internal component upgrade, how much has changed in the IQ3 vs IQ4 chassis that would need a whole new back vs. just updating the components (Besides the new BSI sensor in the IQ4150 of course).

I know they have great trade in deals for newer backs, but considering how modular these backs are compared to a standard DSLR, its sorta funny they don't just sell you the core sensor with some kind of service contract to upgrade the hardware running it.
 
I've been using my IQ4 with both a technical camera and XF on a casual basis while shooting at a local cemetery (my go to local shooting location during covid). With both cameras, I do a lot of live view and focus stacking with the XF. I would echo Paul C's comments in that battery life does NOT seem to be much worse to me with the Feature Update 8 than it did with the prior firmware versions, but I certainly did not do any formal testing. My last outing I was able to take about 160-170 shots on a single battery (some of these were part of 5-7 image focus stacks).
 

Ray Harrison

Active member
To that point, it would be awesome if they offered something like a just a internal component upgrade, how much has changed in the IQ3 vs IQ4 chassis that would need a whole new back vs. just updating the components (Besides the new BSI sensor in the IQ4150 of course).

I know they have great trade in deals for newer backs, but considering how modular these backs are compared to a standard DSLR, its sorta funny they don't just sell you the core sensor with some kind of service contract to upgrade the hardware running it.
Compared to the IQ3 and earlier backs, the IQ4 has different ports, storage Interfaces (XQD/CFe, SD) that are ”external facing” and my understanding is all of the internals changed, not just the sensor, such as the FPGA. I think the screen and buttons may be the same. But going forward, something like you suggest could be an interesting approach.
 

Paul2660

Well-known member
What is certain for me, after owning, P45+, IQ160, IQ260, 3100, the IQ4 has amazing image quality. I see it each time I use the camera. With Frame averaging, (not used by me as much due to subject motion) and Dual Exposure, I am always amazed by the results of the images. Dual exposure to me for the way I shoot and subjects, has to be the single greatest feature Phase ever came out with. Namely, it works, and the results are just totally impressive. Not only do I see cleaner shadows and no longer have to consider a bracket for sunrise/sunset scenes, or other harshly lit scenes, the images seem to have even more sharpness in the areas where Dual exposure is giving the advantage, (shadows). It's so easy to do a quick comparison of a ISO 50 shot and a dual exposure ISO50 shot, and see the differences.

2020 has not been a good year for me or by business, but I do hold hope that the situation in the US gets somewhat better by the 2nd half of the year as I will be able to venture out again. I have a long list of spots in my local state that I wan to revisit and use the IQ4.

I have only one limiting issue with the Phase system, be it on Tech camera or XF, and that is for me it always requires a tripod, as hand holding the system just won't work, with wides or especially a long lens.

The GFX100 allows for much for shooting versatility and I can easily hand hold even the 250mm with the TC 1.4 attached. Unlike trying to hand hold the XF and 240mm. But the image quality IMO between the two systems is vastly different. I don't see the same DR with the GFX100, and almost always end up using a exposure bracket (which is easy to do and can be done hand held). but that requires more work in the post. The ability to just take one image with the IQ4 and dual exposure is really a huge advantage.

Phase One and the IQ4 only has really one raw converter, Capture One, as Adobe has never really spent anytime working on the raw conversion and it's less than stellar, and can't handle the dual exposure images, and this is not any different than the Adobe conversion for the 3100, which always had terrible red cast in areas of shadows.

The GFX100 files work with either LR/ACR or C1, but I sure wish Fuji would look at some of the results from the Phase One IQ4, either Frame Averaging or dual exposure and make a similar update to the GFX100 as in theory, there should be no reason the GFX100 can't do this as it has the same chip as the IQ4, just smaller. It might be a limitation to the processor on the GFX100, and or the abilities the Linux OS gave Phase One. The 400MP pixel shift solution that was finally brought to market, IMO is a total waste of time. Can't be used outdoors at all, unless you are in a area like Monument Valley, or the Grand Canyon, and even there I believe simple wind might cause enough camera shake to ruin a series of images. Unlike Olympus system which processed it's output in camera, Fuji relies on a external software package, that is less than stellar also. The files are not stored in a separate folder on the card, and it's difficult at best to keep up with them if you have shot a lot of other images mixed in. As it took Fuji 1 1/2 years to get this feature out, and this is the best they have, I don't see it changing much. So to Fuji, my take is figure out a dual exposure, or frame averaging solution. Single files even at base ISO in my use don't have the same degree of DR push.

Phase One's single biggest issue for me is just total lack of information, both on current features and up and coming features. Look for example to the "highly" vaunted EXIR feature that was given so much press with the launch of Feature update 8. Net, "it works with any IQ4", which is total BS, as it currently only works with the XT (go figure) and was not even tested to work on the XF, even though feature update 8 supposedly added so much new stuff to the XF. This is just one example. Another would be why can't you kick off frame averaging with the Bob or other remote release? Simple stuff, should have simple solutions. Instead Phase has been totally seemingly focused on the XT platform. The single most expensive tech camera ever released, with NO easy upgrade path of owners of other cameras. Folks, it's just hard to justify 13K to 15K for a lens (32 HR-W with XT shutter) and 7K for the XT. With no trade in path it's cost prohibitive to consider such a solution. And if you think that shipping off a existing tech camera lens to have the shutter changed is worth it, I would consider this, way too many hands will be handling the lens, and the odds of getting your lens back with the same exact degree of sharpness or focus to me is a huge gamble. These lenses alone are just to fragile. The only way to really assure such is to purchase a new lens, tested from both Rodenstock and your dealer to work on the XT, which is a huge cost.

Enough, I rambled. Just wanted to point out that Phase One did score some amazing points with features that have been added to the IQ4. Hopefully 2021 will see further improvements.

Paul C
 

BFD

Member
I have not updated to this new firmware mostly because I am tired of beta testing for Phase One. But, I am interested to know what the new wifi capabilities entail. Can we use Capture Pilot with just an IQ4 and a phone or tablet again? If so, is it working well?
 
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