Site Sponsors
Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Advice MF gear entry

  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    16
    Post Thanks / Like

    Advice MF gear entry

    Hi folks,

    I am currently shooting a Canon 5D MKII for mostly studio work an there is this feeling I might want to jump into MF. Basically it is more like a feeling and not the real need

    Now I have been looking arround for some time and at the moment a H2 with a P30 is one of my possibilities. Combined with the HC 80 this might be a good combination for full body fashion work. Any hints on that because I am still struggling with crop factor and comparison of focal length to 35mm lense.

    For full body I tend to use the 50mm 1.4 from Canon very much at the moment and if I calculated correctly the 80 will be a little longer but not that much.

    For Portraits I really like the 135 2.0 and I guess the HC 150 sould be some kind of equivalent, right?

    Does anybody have some input if this might be a good setup or suggestions for improvements? I guess a similar Contax combination would be also nice but haven't found one at the moment.

    Best Regards

    Marcus

    PS: Maybe someone from Vienna/Austria is reading this an willing to show me his equipment live.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    1,083
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    6

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    H2 with Phase One digital back and say 120/150 will be great combo to go with
    Similar will be H3D or H4D with 100/150 lenses.
    Tareq

  3. #3
    Super Duper
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Royal Oak, MI and Palm Harbor, FL
    Posts
    8,498
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    44

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    I think the P-30 is a 1.3X crop factor ... so a 80mm is about a 100mm equivalent ... or about a 60mm on a 35mm FF camera. Same for a H3D-II/31 or H4D/40.

    Keep in mind that the aspect ratio of 35mm is different from 645, even a cropped frame 645, so it's not a direct translation. IMO, the MFD aspect ratios are more usable than 35mm, and involves less cropped waste of the precious pixels we paid for.

    Depending on whether you use AF for your work ... it should be noted that the more recent bodies from Phase One and Hasselblad (including the H2) are much faster and more accurate than the now discontinued Contax 645 (which I used prior to switching to the H system). Both Phase and Hassey keep upping the ability and accuracy of their AF where the Contax will never get better.

    If you use flash, fill or full, there are leaf shutter lenses for the Phase cameras, and all H lenses are leaf shutter. Contax 645 is a focal plane shutter camera with a top sync speed of 1/125th ... which gets iffy in certain ambient conditions while shooting a moving subject ... no 1/250th or HSS like the Canon provides.

    -Marc

  4. #4
    Workshop Member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    3,275
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    7

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Focal Length Equivalent Calculator: Download from Capture Integration (Phase One Dealer)

    Doug Peterson (e-mail Me)
    __________________

    Head of Technical Services, Capture Integration
    Phase One Partner of the Year
    Leaf, Leica, Cambo, Arca Swiss, Canon, Apple, Profoto, Broncolor, Eizo & More

    National: 877.217.9870 *| *Cell: 740.707.2183
    Newsletter | RSS Feed
    Buy Capture One at 10% off

  5. #5
    Workshop Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Houston TX USA
    Posts
    273
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    For me, I stated with film, shooting in a Fuji 645, it cost about $300 to get into this, and my local lab scanned. I did this for about a year, and found that all the advantages of MF suited me.

    I then moved to a mamiya and a ZD back, with all it's disadvantages. I'm giving that a full year before I move on. Even this bottom end solution is much better in IQ than an FF DSLR that I have seen. In the MF world, this is as cheap as you can get and still have a CF card based system with AF.

    If I had it to do again, I would skip the Fuji and go with a Mamiya AFD and film to see if the MF style and my shooting match. Film is cheap, and if there is a MF lab close that scans, it's a safe start.

    Dave

  6. #6
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    16
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    @Marc: perfect input. At the moment I only use AF and for some fashion work I think I will never be able to do it MF e.g. Model walking in the direction of the camera. But for the other things I will have to see if MF is an option. For a beauty shot I guess it may be.

    The difference in sync time is a very interesting pint!

    @Doug: Thank you for the link. Due to the formula it seams that the 80 ist a littlebit to long and the 150 too short in comparison to the lenght I am used to at the moment.

    @Dave: I have been to MF film with my old Kowa 66 and it was great.

    So is the P30 a good point to start from? Or will I be disappointed and running for P45 or something the year after?

    High ISO is nothing I am looking for. More of a controlled studio work with people.

    Marcus

  7. #7
    jamie123
    Guest

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Quote Originally Posted by benton1 View Post
    @Marc: perfect input. At the moment I only use AF and for some fashion work I think I will never be able to do it MF e.g. Model walking in the direction of the camera.
    Sure you can. Just pre-focus on the spot where the model will stand when you press the shutter. Or to be more precise: tape a cross to the floor, have the model stand there and focus on her eyes. Then have her stand back and walk towards you and when she reaches the spot on the floor you click the shutter.

    Cameras didn't always have AF, you know

  8. #8
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    16
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Quote Originally Posted by jamie123 View Post
    Cameras didn't always have AF, you know
    Of course not My old Yashica 124 G has also no AF

  9. #9
    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Carmel/Tucson
    Posts
    2,356
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    [QUOTE=benton1;266434....So is the P30 a good point to start from? Or will I be disappointed and running for P45 or something the year after?

    High ISO is nothing I am looking for. More of a controlled studio work with people.

    Marcus[/QUOTE]

    Yes. The P30 is a great MFDB. And you're not missing much by not opting for the P30+. Except maybe that excellent improved LCD screen that Phase is known for...

    ken

  10. #10
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    16
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Thank's to Kurt I went through some RAW files which show impressive detail. Looks really interesting especially compared to the Canon 5D MKII. But this leads to another question - sharpness! These files are so sharp it is incredible. Unfortunately it looks like the files are too sharp for Portraits or maybe my workflow is rubbish. I tried some retouching but I was not really happy with the result.

    Am I doing something wrong or are those MFDBs better for landscape work or full body pictures?

    Marcus

  11. #11
    Super Duper
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Royal Oak, MI and Palm Harbor, FL
    Posts
    8,498
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    44

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Quote Originally Posted by benton1 View Post
    Thank's to Kurt I went through some RAW files which show impressive detail. Looks really interesting especially compared to the Canon 5D MKII. But this leads to another question - sharpness! These files are so sharp it is incredible. Unfortunately it looks like the files are too sharp for Portraits or maybe my workflow is rubbish. I tried some retouching but I was not really happy with the result.

    Am I doing something wrong or are those MFDBs better for landscape work or full body pictures?

    Marcus
    Depends on the lens. Use a 120 macro and it'll be retina slicing sharp. Use a portrait lens and it'll be more forgiving.

    How things are lit contribute to the feel of sharpness in portraits ... or not.

    The sharpening workflow has a huge effect with MFD. Some default sharpening settings are too much for MFD portraits.

    Retouching by hand sucks ... to inconsistent, and too much work ... I use Photo Tools 2.5 ... it has a one button Portrait Fixer that rocks!

    -Marc

  12. #12
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    16
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Depends on the lens. Use a 120 macro and it'll be retina slicing sharp. Use a portrait lens and it'll be more forgiving.
    ...

    -Marc
    That was one point that surprised me. The picutre was taken free hand in the studio with a 150mm lens - no macro. Any suggestions on a portrait lens für H1/H2?

    I will have a look for the Photo Tools.

    Marcus

  13. #13
    Super Duper
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Royal Oak, MI and Palm Harbor, FL
    Posts
    8,498
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    44

    Re: Advice MF gear entry

    Quote Originally Posted by benton1 View Post
    That was one point that surprised me. The picutre was taken free hand in the studio with a 150mm lens - no macro. Any suggestions on a portrait lens für H1/H2?

    I will have a look for the Photo Tools.

    Marcus
    Well, all of the HC lenses are sharp ... but one would expect the 150 to be more forgiving at least wide open. My personal favorite HC lens for people work is the 100/2.2.

    If in the studio, what kind of lighting? Specular light will make a coke bottle look relatively sharp ... I use a diffused 7" Elinchrom Octa box coverted to use Profoto heads. Even then I sometimes have to put another diffuser panel in front of the Octa.

    Think of it this way ... you can soften up any razor sharp lens ... but you can't make a dud lens any sharper.

    Try the trial version of Photo Tools ... see what you think.

    -Marc

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •