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What’s the current state of Phase One?

Paul Spinnler

Active member
Of course, you have the XT which is mirrorless.

Very likely that the IQ5 will have 200MB. This may suggest the need for new lenses. A mirrorless XF body with newly computed lenses which don't have to be of retro-focus design (because no mirror). Adapter for older lenses, similarly to what Nikon and Cannon did.
By that definition you are equating tech cams with mirrorless systems like Fuji, Hassy X etc - that clearly was not my point and is not the point; the XT is a tripod focused compact tech cam without EVF, autofocus and with movements -positioned as integrated tech cam alternative by P1.

Phase one does not have a true mirrorless alternative to a Fuji / Hassy X cameras which have viewfinders, lend themselves to tripod less photography with autofocus. There is no X system to the H system equivalent in Phase One land.

Phase could invest in a mirrorless body and new set of lenses which could compete with Hassy and Fuji but it does make zero sense given the costs involved, unclear outcome and other significantly more lucrative areas of investment. Why sink 10 million into a new system when you can get paid upfront by institutional clients from industry / Defense for big ticket projects?

I doubt we will see a mirrorless Phase system. We will see a formidable S4 at one point which will be the next fully newly developed medium format digital system.
 

vieri

Well-known member
I don't know about the current state of Phase One, but I do know what my Phase One equipment does for me today - as a landscape photographer. YMMV, of course.

My IQ4 is getting little use since I got the IQ4 Achromatic, which e.g. during the last 20 days I have been on The Faroe Islands got used exclusively all day, every day. Currently, I am using the backs on an Arca-Swiss Rm3di, they work perfectly (the last FW update fixed a startup issue I was seeing from time to time, which has now completely disappeared) and for my work and my setup the backs are now just flawless and I don't know of any other solution by other brands that would offer me the same image quality - not to mention in Achromatic flavour. I use long exposures all day, every day, and frame averaging is just the best thing since sliced (photographic) bread, for me. That feature alone, for my workflow, is worth its weight in gold (does a feature has weight? That's a conundrum!).

The times I needed Phase's support, it's always been great. The Italian distributor is extremely responsive, and always willing to go the extra mile to help.

As IQ4 improvements, I would definitely love to have:

- Better battery life (new & improved batteries in the same enclosure - would that be possible? Not sure)
- USB-C based battery chargers, so I don't need to carry the power adapter of the Hahnel charger (everything else I travel with is USB-C based, carrying two Phase chargers is a pain)
- Ability to write focal lens in metadata

A new sensor will likely come, at some point, as will an IQ5; but, if it didn't and my IQ4 would keep working forever, I'd be happy all the same. Now, a 23mm with a larger image circle than the current Rodie, or an wider wideangle, that would be a different story...

Just my .02, of course.

Best regards,

Vieri
 

drevil

Well-known member
Staff member
I think a more pressuring question is, what is the state of Mamiya and Leaf :)
 

bab

Active member
So basically your lucky to have the IQ4 it’s obviously an off shoot of secret scientific equipment fantastically selling for big profits. Because if it wasn’t for climate change countries like Denmark wouldn’t be financing the high end drone research and business like that wouldn’t exist.
Unless they were being used for either wind farm land exploration or watching a football game without paying.
I’m not surprised by the time it took companies to release any products or firmware in the last few years, some of the workers got the bug, others decided to take free money and not even work.
I’m sure many ideas will be coming into the pipeline….Sony are you listening? Your the force’s last hope.
 

JamesJetel

New member
I don't know about the current state of Phase One, but I do know what my Phase One equipment does for me today - as a landscape photographer. YMMV, of course.

My IQ4 is getting little use since I got the IQ4 Achromatic, which e.g. during the last 20 days I have been on The Faroe Islands got used exclusively all day, every day. Currently, I am using the backs on an Arca-Swiss Rm3di, they work perfectly (the last FW update fixed a startup issue I was seeing from time to time, which has now completely disappeared) and for my work and my setup the backs are now just flawless and I don't know of any other solution by other brands that would offer me the same image quality - not to mention in Achromatic flavour. I use long exposures all day, every day, and frame averaging is just the best thing since sliced (photographic) bread, for me. That feature alone, for my workflow, is worth its weight in gold (does a feature has weight? That's a conundrum!).

The times I needed Phase's support, it's always been great. The Italian distributor is extremely responsive, and always willing to go the extra mile to help.

As IQ4 improvements, I would definitely love to have:

- Better battery life (new & improved batteries in the same enclosure - would that be possible? Not sure)
- USB-C based battery chargers, so I don't need to carry the power adapter of the Hahnel charger (everything else I travel with is USB-C based, carrying two Phase chargers is a pain)
- Ability to write focal lens in metadata

A new sensor will likely come, at some point, as will an IQ5; but, if it didn't and my IQ4 would keep working forever, I'd be happy all the same. Now, a 23mm with a larger image circle than the current Rodie, or an wider wideangle, that would be a different story...

Just my .02, of course.

Best regards,

Vieri
I have actually emailed Rodenstock this very question, and even asked if there were any world in which the hard stop on the image circle could be removed. I’d gladly have the data, albeit deteriorated quality at the far edges of the frame, over those hard black stops. They said nope, and further that they’d not be making anything like an 18mm to satisfy the need further.
 

ThdeDude

Active member
I have actually emailed Rodenstock this very question, ["Now, a 23mm with a larger image circle than the current Rodie, or an wider wideangle"] ... they’d not be making anything like an 18mm to satisfy the need further.
A person in-the-know told me few years ago that the 70mm Digaron-W (which is identical to the Apo-Sironar Digital 70mm except name) may get the "SW" treatment. But otherwise I doubt we will see any new Digaron lenses.

One option for a shorter focal length than the 23mm Digaron would be the ACTAR-19, https://tinyurl.com/pureb8k5, which is based on the PC NIKKOR 19mm f/4. (No affiliation, no person experience.) Cambo states that the "image circle is over 71mm".
 
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ThdeDude

Active member
By that definition you are equating tech cams with mirrorless systems like Fuji, Hassy X etc - that clearly was not my point and is not the point; the XT is a tripod focused compact tech cam without EVF, autofocus and with movements -positioned as integrated tech cam alternative by P1.
I should have added after "you have the XT which is mirrorless" that the XT is a technical camera (based on the Cambo WRS-1600) and hence in a different category of camera than the other cameras discussed.
 

ThdeDude

Active member
Phase could invest in a mirrorless body and new set of lenses which could compete with Hassy and Fuji but it does make zero sense given the costs involved, unclear outcome and other significantly more lucrative areas of investment. Why sink 10 million into a new system when you can get paid upfront by institutional clients from industry / Defense for big ticket projects?
You may be surprised how many well-heeled professionals and amateurs would upgrade/update to a mirrorless XF with new lenses. Especially if there would be some compatibility to older DB and older lenses via adapter.
 

JamesJetel

New member
A person in-the-know told me few years ago that the 70mm Digaron-W (which is identical to the Apo-Sironar Digital 70mm except name) may get the "SW" treatment. But otherwise I doubt we will see any new Digaron lenses.

One option for a shorter focal length than the 23mm Digaron would be the ACTAR-19, https://tinyurl.com/pureb8k5, which is based on the PC NIKKOR 19mm f/4. (No affiliation, no person experience.) Cambo states that the "image circle is over 71mm".
Really interesting! I’ll take a look
 

rdeloe

Well-known member
One option for a shorter focal length than the 23mm Digaron would be the ACTAR-19, https://tinyurl.com/pureb8k5, which is based on the PC NIKKOR 19mm f/4. (No affiliation, no person experience.) Cambo states that the "image circle is over 71mm".
The PC-Nikkor 19mm f/4 is a very complex lens. It has 17 element in 13 groups. I would be astonished to discover that it doesn't involve a floating element design to correct poor performance in the corners at close distances. That seems to be par for the course for modern wide angle retrofocus lenses. Yet from the pictures and information on Cambo's web site, I'm not seeing a focusing helicoid on the lens, which means focus happens on the Actus rail. And that means any close focus elements are not being used. If I'm right, that's a major compromise.

I think Cambo's idea is brilliant (take existing lenses and re-house them). Nonetheless, I'm curious if my hunch about the PC-Nikkor 19/4 is correct, and thus how it performs in its Actar-19 version without a focusing helicoid.

In this vein, my hunch is that the Actar-24 is a Samyang/Rokinon/Bower 24mm f/3.5 tilt-shift, rehoused like the PC-Nikkor 19 f/4. I don't know what else it could be. Like the Actar-19, I'm not seeing a focusing helicoid on the Actar-24; if it has one and I'm just not seeing it, please let me know.

If the Actar-24 is the Samy, that lens definitely has a floating element design. I know because I have a Samyang 24/3.5 that I re-mounted for use on my setup. Once you remove the tilt-shift mechanism and re-mount the remainder, you can set a Samyang 24/3.5 to infinity and focus by rail, but you're giving up corner performance. For best performance it has to be set at its flange distance and then focused with the helicoid.
 

Paul Spinnler

Active member
A person in-the-know told me few years ago that the 70mm Digaron-W (which is identical to the Apo-Sironar Digital 70mm except name) may get the "SW" treatment. But otherwise I doubt we will see any new Digaron lenses.

One option for a shorter focal length than the 23mm Digaron would be the ACTAR-19, https://tinyurl.com/pureb8k5, which is based on the PC NIKKOR 19mm f/4. (No affiliation, no person experience.) Cambo states that the "image circle is over 71mm".
There is a design between 23 and 32 with bigger IC - may come in a few years …
 

buildbot

Active member

ThdeDude

Active member
There is a design between 23 and 32 with bigger IC - may come in a few years …
Yes, I can see how this would make sense. The 32mm is a huge lens and its focal length is really too close to the 40mm. Now with back-illuminated sensors, retro-focus design is not to so important anymore. A 26mm Digaron-SW would follow the spacing of the other Digaron-Ws, 40mm x 60mm x 90mm, and could replace both the 23mm Digaron-S and the 32mm Digaron-W.
 

MartinN

Well-known member
Why not 92x92 :)
https://www.e2v.com/resources/account/download-datasheet/1897
They also have a 61mm one: https://www.teledyneimaging.com/media/1322/ccd290-66.pdf
Yes , I am waiting for 6x7 or 6x8 for my Mamiya RZ and Fuji GX680. A big sensor will eventually evolve. And cost will go down. But in my lifetime , that is the question ?
 

buildbot

Active member
Yes , I am waiting for 6x7 or 6x8 for my Mamiya RZ and Fuji GX680. A big sensor will eventually evolve. And cost will go down. But in my lifetime , that is the question ?
With a 300mm wafer you could only fit a few, like 2-4, 6x8 sized CMOS sensors, if I did my math correctly. That's always going to be very very expensive. We might get to the point hobbyists are able to fabricate their own very large pixel /very large chip designs at home though: http://sam.zeloof.xyz/first-ic/

More on topic, Phase One is being very smart in my opinion going into B2B, Cultural, and Drone photography, I think there is just not enough people out there willing to drop 25-50K+ on a system even if it is a big step up from an X2D/GFX100 or the sure to be incoming CFV-100c. I got my back used and if/when I upgrade to an IQ4, it will also be used.
 

Paul Spinnler

Active member
With a 300mm wafer you could only fit a few, like 2-4, 6x8 sized CMOS sensors, if I did my math correctly. That's always going to be very very expensive. We might get to the point hobbyists are able to fabricate their own very large pixel /very large chip designs at home though: http://sam.zeloof.xyz/first-ic/

More on topic, Phase One is being very smart in my opinion going into B2B, Cultural, and Drone photography, I think there is just not enough people out there willing to drop 25-50K+ on a system even if it is a big step up from an X2D/GFX100 or the sure to be incoming CFV-100c. I got my back used and if/when I upgrade to an IQ4, it will also be used.
You could stitch sensors as Arri has done for their largest format offerings … it is tricky though and also not cheap …
 
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