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Thread: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

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    leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I would like to make the move from 35mm to MF. I photograph nature, landscape and abstract. I do not do studio work.
    I want to make (and even now often do) prints 20x30 and preferably larger. I do appreciate the "micro contrast" look for MF.
    I am considering the Lecia S2 and the Hasselblaud H4D-40 and of course
    the PhaseOne IQ140. (I am "coming from" the Nikon 35 mm world.)

    I am trying to weigh the pros/cons, the advantages/disadvantages of these two systems. I have been fortunate enough to
    use the Leica for 4 days and must admit that I was extremely impressed by the image quality and of course, its form factor
    is very similar to the Nikon D3X, so it did feel "familiar" to me. I have not been able to try the Hasselblaud, although I am
    trying to arrange that. I used the IQ140 for a day.

    But a couple days of use is not the same as weeks or months, and I would deeply appreciate comments or advice from
    anyone who has had the opportunity to work with both of these systems "in the real world." I am interested in comments
    relating to (a) the body/back and (b) the "glass".

    I know that this is somewhat an "open ended" request, and that there is not a conclusive or absolute "answer", but I accept this.

    I must also in fairness admit, that my greatest hesitancy with regard to the Leica is the price and this is especially noteworthy
    since it is a single integrated system, without an obvious upgrade pathway and from a company without a track record in MF
    (i.e. may or may not stay in this format).

    Thank you, I deeply appreciate your help.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    you should ad a leaf to your list !

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I am going through a very similar thought process. 90% of my photography is landscapes, but usually involve multi-day trips via kayak (to add some context).

    I primarily used a 1DSIII with L primes, lots of tele stuff etc. The Canon wides (14, 24, 24TSE, 35) were not cutting it for the resolution of the 1DS, so I move to an M9 (18, 24/35/50 Lux, Nocti and 90 APO Cron) and 5D (for casual stuff), and GH2. The M9 and glass are fantastic, extremely portable in my Kayak, and it has been wonderful. I also have a little Gitzo CF tripod that is very handy for keeping things light and tidy.

    Having said this, when when I look at MF images on this forum, I was greatly tempted by the smoooooth tones in the images. The resolution is important for me as I print of a 44" Z3100 and love to do large prints, but what struck me most was how much smoother the MF images looked compared to the M9.

    This lead me to the S2. I love Leica so figured I would go this route. Played with the S2 and it is a beautiful camera, but I did not feel that it was a big enough step off the M9. Also, knowing myself, I am sure at some point I would want to try a tech camera for wides.

    In the price point of the S2, the P65+ makes a lot of sense. for 30K, I can be up and running with the fine 80 CS and body, and for another 10K have a decent lens lineup, and I like the fact that unlike Leica, Canon etc., I have an upgrade path and policy. I thought I was settled on this, but not so...

    I figured, if I am going to spend this kind of money, I may as well see what the best backs offer - Aptus II 12 and IQ 180. I have demos booked next week, and cannot wait. If the IQ180 did not exist, the Aptus would be a no brainer. I can justify the additional cost over the P65+ (approx 7K) for the much better screen, interface, resolution and latest sensor tech. Apparently, their upgrade policy is also quite similar to Phase, so that's a positive as well. My only concern is the 32s max exp. So I will need to decide if that and the differences in the interface of the IQ are worth the extra huge leap in cost -- of course it makes sense to me but may not to my wife.

    I know this does not answer your question, but certainly add Leaf to the mix, and also consider the P65+ (I thing its way more bang for your $ than the S2). The P65+ also gives you a lot more flexibility for tech camera use, especially if you into landscapes, and you have far more lens options. One other factor in play for me was the possibility of a new digital phase body, which I'm sure, when it arrives, will be better integrated with their backs.

    Good luck with your decision, and I will be eagerly watching this thread

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    BTW, one more point. Lurking around this forum, I am just amazed at how involved guys like Yair from Leaf, and the the boys from CI are in helping out users. Try that with Leica!!

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Jagsiva, it seems to me you have made some telling points. I notice this is your 3rd post as a new member and it illustrates the value and contributions of members contributing new "blood" by posting. I recently happened to run through several pages of our membership and am truly amazed at how many members have never made a post; I understand this because I have been there...there is a natural hesitation about jumping in, but whatever we can do to keep all members in our loop just makes this a stronger place to be. In my view your two posts are worth a second read because of their analysis value whether someone agrees with all of it or not. I for one encourage those who have never posted comments or questions to join in. Thanks. Charles

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by jagsiva View Post
    BTW, one more point. Lurking around this forum, I am just amazed at how involved guys like Yair from Leaf, and the the boys from CI are in helping out users. Try that with Leica!!
    Trust me, us Leica guys are around too!

    David
    David Farkas
    Leica Store Miami

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by dfarkas View Post
    Trust me, us Leica guys are around too!

    David
    David, I stand corrected! I love your blog, and a key factor in me looking at the S2.

    But you have to admit that for a Product manager such as Yair to be directly involved with his users, puts him in a league of his own. I only say this as my own personal experience with product managers leaves me wanting/needing them to get into the trenches and better understand how their products are being used in the real world...Cheers

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I also was in the same situation, coming from 35mm and wanted MFDB.

    I tried H4D40 and looked at IQ40 and ended up with ordering a Leaf Aptus II 40 with the 3 LS lenses ( 55,80 and 110 ) and an airgrip today.

    The reason I ended up with a Leaf is the look of the files ( a shoot a lot of skin ), the price ( I got two more LS lenses and an Air grip for the difference in price to IQ140 ), the availebelity ( I get the Aptus and lenses in 3-4 days ), the LS lenses ( 1/1600 flash sync and focus speed ).

    I have been going back and forth between 35 mm and MFDB since middle of 1990s.
    PhaseOne Lightphase 6MB was my first MFDB and since then, I have had H3D31, PhaseOne P30, PhaseOne P30+ and H4D40.

    This time I tried H4D60 also before ending up with Aptus.

    When I had the H4d60 with a 100 mm 2.2 on loan, I also tried the Aptus with the LS 110 mm 2.8.
    The difference in focus speed was a revelation. Where the HC100 hunted for a while before it locked on, the LS snapped into focus immediately!!!

    There and then, Hasselblad disappeared from the equation!
    I wanted to use those LS lenses.

    And it was not that easy for me to drop the Hasselblad. I have been a Hassy fan since the early 70s. I even have a Hasselblad tattoo .-().

    I also selected the 40MB instead of the 80MB because of speed and more DOF.

    In MFDB there is already enough problem with getting focus right, so the very limited DOF on the bigger chip is not for my kind of work.

    At 2.8, the DOF is shallow enough with a 40MB chip. I am not that big of a wide angle shooter either. A 28 on the 40MB chip is like a 24mm in 35. And that is wide enough for me.

    This is my first post here and I am excited to be back in the MFDB fold.

    My current camera is Nikon D3X, and I love its quality ( but I love MFDB more .-) ).

    Printed paper tends to equalize the IQ difference, but the joy of retouching a MFDB file is priceless.

    Looking forward to Monday when my back and lenses arrives, and again I can pop up a MFDB file on the big screen and admire the smoothnes of a MFDB file.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Forums like this are excellent resources. GetDPI is probably the best of all, but nothing beats the relationship that you have with your rep. I would never buy my gear from an online place for that reason. My experience with Hasselblad is that real problems get solved by face to face contact not a forum.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
    www.jeff-grant.com

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I have owned the H4D and M9, and rented the S2 from David Farkas. When making these decisions, it's important to look ahead at how your photography will evolve. These considerations are just as important as upgrade paths. DB's like the H4D have micro-lenses, and are not recommended for cameras with movements (tilt/shift, etc.). It is however, a fantastic camera that produces a wonder image, and probably has the least shutter vibration of any MFD/SLR. It's a closed system, but has cool options like HTS 1.5 tilt/shift adapter and waist level viewfinder. It did need frequent battery changes and cleaning, but some have suggested the removable finder might add (dust) to that. It's an easy camera to clean though. The S2, is amazing too, very robust and weather sealed. Don't forget the Pentax 645D, also weather sealed with 40 MP (same sensor as the H4D) and very good price point.
    Lastly, I would also suggest the Hasselblad "V" system, DB's such as the CFV 39 can be used on most any Hasselblad since 1957. Access to Carl Zeiss lenses and options such as the flex body, arch body, extension tubes and bellows. Plus the retro look is nice too.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    As always, choosing is difficult and highly personal.

    I worked with a H4D/40 for well over a year, and now have worked with the S2 for about a year ... both used for portrait, (specifically environmental portraits), travel, wedding photography, and some commercial location assignments.

    I was interested in the S2 for well over a year before getting one. My earlier initial tests were inconclusive because being a new camera, the S2 was a work-in-progress and at the time only had two lenses available. So I waited and watched.

    That was then and this is now.

    I did get a S2P and all four available lenses. After testing it against my H4D/40, I found them roughly equal in IQ when printed ... with the edge given to the S2 probably due to the lenses. I upgraded the H4D/40 to a H4D/60 and use that camera primarily in the studio now. Most all mobile and location work is done with the S2.

    I'd advise buying from a known Leica dealer, like David or my long time Leica dealer Sam at the Classic Connection. I have had to have some things fixed and the Leica S2 service team was just as responsive and quick as my Hasselblad service, maybe even better.

    Leica has issued meaningful firmware updates for the S2, which has improved the speed and accuracy of the cameras to the point that it now has taken over many of the applications I would have used a 35mm DSLR for. I take the S2 with me far more frequently than I ever did any other MF system ... including a Mamiya 645 with a Leaf Aptus 75s back, and a number of different versions of the H system. The form factor just promotes taking it with you more like a 35mm than a MFD.

    That said, the H4D/40 and 50 has also been recently upgraded with new firmware, has the very useful True Focus, and is a far more complete system. I wouldn't worry to much about the trade value based on being modular ... in that regard, the S2 and H4D are the same. When you upgrade a H4 the back and body stay together. So, the modularity is an advantage only if you want to use the back on a technical camera.

    Ant specific questions come to mind, just ask.

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Leica S2 kit - $29k
    Phase IQ140 kit - $26k
    H4D-40 kit - $20k

    What's your budget? Ones you answer it to yourself, you'll find the right kit.
    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I saw Marc sold his H4D-40 for below $12,000. If your budget is low the Hasselblad is of great values.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by MP7 View Post
    I saw Marc sold his H4D-40 for below $12,000. If your budget is low the Hasselblad is of great values.
    H4D-40 for 12,000 is quite unbelievable but hang on a minute. We talking about USD or Euros here?

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I am pretty sure Marc sold his H4D-40 for $11,600 USD.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by craigrudlin View Post
    I must also in fairness admit, that my greatest hesitancy with regard to the Leica is the price and this is especially noteworthy
    since it is a single integrated system, without an obvious upgrade pathway and from a company without a track record in MF
    (i.e. may or may not stay in this format).

    Thank you, I deeply appreciate your help.
    Certainly a valid concern and one I wish I had given more weight to when I bought my Sinar kit (I'm now a Leica S2 shooter). But unlike Sinar the demand for Leica products appears to be very strong. So much so that it's difficult to find stock. A more valid concern might be whether, if you bought a Leica S2. you would be able to get a full complement of lenses for it.

    With regard to upgrades I think the real question is not whether the company offers trade-ins but how much it cost you to own the camera when you want to sell or replace it. Having paid my dues in this regard on more than one occasion I am very sensitive to this aspect of gear choices. Right now I suspect my Leica gear is worth at least what I paid for it...probably more.

    There are many valid reasons why another system might suit you better but I would suggest that these two shouldn't be determining factors.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Leica S2 kit for $29,000? That's the body with one lens. A three lens kit, if lenses are ever available is closer to 45-50K.

    I'd like to throw a bug into this conversation. Pentax 645D and a complete lens kit (I have the 35, 45-85, 75, 120, 150 and 80-160 (a little too much glass of course) all for under $15,000.00 as all of the glass is available used. If one were to buy only AF lenses it would still be under $20K. Ergonomics are great, IQ is great, far superior to the D3x I sold to fund this). The only down side it is a slow working processor (about 6 secs to load image on the LCD). For landscape work, that shouldn't be an issue. I'm making 36" prints for my gallery exhibit and they are wonderful.
    On-line portfolio
    www.abouddweck.com

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I'm making 36" prints for my gallery exhibit and they are wonderful.
    Well, try to make 36" prints from H4D-40 and compare to 645D.

    It's obviously that IQ from $20k camera will be better than $11k camera, and $60k camera IQ is better than from $20k one's. Given that person behind the camera knows what he is doing. It's free market in free world, and cameras are valued by IQ they can deliver.

    Don't get me wrong, 645D is a great camera for $11k. But H4D-40 is from little different league.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    I can only assume complaints about the write times for the 645D are from users who are shooting RAW + JPG and backing up to a second card. If I load one card in my 645D, shoot RAW only, the time from shutter release to display on the screen is approximately two seconds. The preview lasts approximately three seconds. I hit the display button again and the image comes up almost immediately. If I back up in JPG Large to a second card, the results are virtually the same. If I backup RAW to the second card, then the time to write completion is about six seconds. If you can live without backing up, the write time is a non-issue, in my opinion.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pipzz View Post
    Well, try to make 36" prints from H4D-40 and compare to 645D.

    It's obviously that IQ from $20k camera will be better than $11k camera, and $60k camera IQ is better than from $20k one's. Given that person behind the camera knows what he is doing. It's free market in free world, and cameras are valued by IQ they can deliver.

    Don't get me wrong, 645D is a great camera for $11k. But H4D-40 is from little different league.
    I would challenge your assumption that the H4D-40 is in a different league from the 645D in terms of image quality or construction quality. The optics could certainly influence overall image quality but considering they use essentially identical sensors, post processing skills and lens selection are likely to be the deciding factors in the real world. And the difference between 14 bit processing (Pentax) and 16 bit processing (Hasselblad) is another non-issue in the real world. Printer and media selection will have far more impact on the final image.

    For studio work I would certainly consider the Hasselblad, or others, but for fast moving field/landscape work, the 645D is superb and that is precisely the type of environment that it, and Pentax 645 and 67 predecessors, were designed for.
    Last edited by Charles Wood; 16th September 2011 at 04:42. Reason: Elaboration

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by MP7 View Post
    I am pretty sure Marc sold his H4D-40 for $11,600 USD.
    There are a number of factors that govern resale ... how fast you want to move something, what you paid originally or via an upgrade, how much you earned with it, and how much was written off.

    Trust me, I didn't lose much on my H4D/40 if anything at all ... but, (big BUT), my original buying price, plus professional earnings including line-item client daily rental charges for MFD digital capture, and annual write offs made that possible. These mitigating factors are less available to advanced enthusiasts.

    In general, these MFD systems do not hold re-sale value for a number of reasons ... those that can afford them in the first place can usually afford to continue trading/upgrading to keep current ... so they are not the ones buying the used stuff. This leaves selling outright to those that can't go new for financial reasons, or simply refuse to pay for new gear like the early adopters and confirmed gear sluts will ... therefore, they expect a relative bargain or they just won't buy at all. This is a generalization and there are exceptions, but not many.

    So, I agree ... selecting based strictly on resale value is not always the best approach. Choose wisely going in, and think long term with the objective of living with it to make images.

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Three words ... application, application, application.

    The H and P1 systems are highly versatile, mature systems with the latest usable and important technologies that deliver a huge and diverse application base that allows a photographer to do almost anything they can dream up creatively.

    If you don't need any of that ... if you think you'll never tether a camera, never need the 16 bit pushed through in profoto color space to maintain as much integrity of color as possible while processing, if you don't need a wide array of state-of-the-art H, or Schneider, or S AF optics (many or all available with leaf shutters), nor ever need to rent something on location, or think you'll never need a 60 meg, 80 meg, or even a 200 meg upgrade path, and so on ... then there is a choice for you that is very nice, and comparatively affordable. Nothing wrong with that if it meets your application needs now and well into the future.

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Three words ... application, application, application.

    -Marc
    Exactly!

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pipzz View Post
    Well, try to make 36" prints from H4D-40 and compare to 645D.

    It's obviously that IQ from $20k camera will be better than $11k camera, and $60k camera IQ is better than from $20k one's. Given that person behind the camera knows what he is doing. It's free market in free world, and cameras are valued by IQ they can deliver.

    Don't get me wrong, 645D is a great camera for $11k. But H4D-40 is from little different league.
    Higher IQ will most certainly need lenses that resolve all those MP's and quite frankly, not many do "in camera", but instead rely on software. Also, the KAF 40000 in the H4D, is the exact same sensor in the 645D, but your right about being in a different league...you can take photographs with the 645D in any weather!

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnygoesdigital View Post
    Higher IQ will most certainly need lenses that resolve all those MP's and quite frankly, not many do "in camera", but instead rely on software. Also, the KAF 40000 in the H4D, is the exact same sensor in the 645D, but your right about being in a different league...you can take photographs with the 645D in any weather!
    So is that to say you will back this comment professionally with the 645D over a H4D-40?:P

    No, but seriously?

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Three words ... application, application, application.

    The H and P1 systems are highly versatile, mature systems with the latest usable and important technologies that deliver a huge and diverse application base that allows a photographer to do almost anything they can dream up creatively.

    If you don't need any of that ... if you think you'll never tether a camera, never need the 16 bit pushed through in profoto color space to maintain as much integrity of color as possible while processing, if you don't need a wide array of state-of-the-art H, or Schneider, or S AF optics (many or all available with leaf shutters), nor ever need to rent something on location, or think you'll never need a 60 meg, 80 meg, or even a 200 meg upgrade path, and so on ... then there is a choice for you that is very nice, and comparatively affordable. Nothing wrong with that if it meets your application needs now and well into the future.

    -Marc
    Hi Marc,
    Love your photography and lot of what you said makes sense to me. So I have a question specifically for you, so if you may entertain the question below:

    I know you have multiple systems because you have said so, and from what you do as far as application, and nowadays I hear you love to take your Porsche (S2) over your Bently (H4D-60). However, in a world where only these two cameras existed and you can only use one, which will it be?

    Thanks
    Po

    PS. Sorry for calling you out :P

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pophoto View Post
    So is that to say you will back this comment professionally with the 645D over a H4D-40?:P

    No, but seriously?
    Are you saying as a professional photographer would you chose a Pentax 645D over a H4D-40? Yes.

    Now, if you have anything to show where the IQ of these two cameras are different, I would love to see it.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pophoto View Post
    So is that to say you will back this comment professionally with the 645D over a H4D-40?:P

    No, but seriously?
    If I were given the choice of these two cameras in different settings -

    1. Photographing a waterfall while hiking in the rainforest I would choose the 645D for its weather resistance.

    2. Photographing the waterfall from a helicopter, I would choose the hasselblad H4D, because it has the ability for virtually vibration free images using the LS lenses.

    Both cameras produce great images, but both also have limitations. Again, it's up to the lens to resolve these megapixels, so instead of comparing sensors, i'd be more concerned about the glass.

    The Leica S2 probably has the best form factor and lenses designed specifically for this format then any camera to date, plus its weather sealed.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Depending on the photography you shoot, it's helpful to additionally consider the apertures that you will most often be choosing to use. Although they are certainly expensive, Leica's S2 lenses perform extremely well wide open. For those MF photographers who shoot a variety of applications beyond stopped down landscapes, they're a pleasure to use. As Marc says, it's all about application.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pophoto View Post
    Hi Marc,
    Love your photography and lot of what you said makes sense to me. So I have a question specifically for you, so if you may entertain the question below:

    I know you have multiple systems because you have said so, and from what you do as far as application, and nowadays I hear you love to take your Porsche (S2) over your Bently (H4D-60). However, in a world where only these two cameras existed and you can only use one, which will it be?

    Thanks
    Po

    PS. Sorry for calling you out :P


    Actually it is not as complex a question as it appears to be.

    To make money from, or cover as many different applications possible ... Hasselblad ... or Phase One ... or Leaf. They simply rule the multiple application territory. One may out do the other for certain MFD applications ... but they all can do all of it to one degree or another.

    To just have fun, take the camera most anywhere, and make money with some applications, the S2. I simply can't remember having so much fun with a camera since my first M.

    If I fully retire from commercial work requiring T/S, mega files, view camera use, etc. ... the H4D will go bye-bye, and so will most of my Sony kit. Leaving the S2 and M9 to enjoy as I amble off into the sunset

    That day is actually getting uncomfortably close. Thanks for reminding me ... !!!!

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post


    Actually it is not as complex a question as it appears to be.

    To make money from, or cover as many different applications possible ... Hasselblad ... or Phase One ... or Leaf. They simply rule the multiple application territory. One may out do the other for certain MFD applications ... but they all can do all of it to one degree or another.

    To just have fun, take the camera most anywhere, and make money with some applications, the S2. I simply can't remember having so much fun with a camera since my first M.

    If I fully retire from commercial work requiring T/S, mega files, view camera use, etc. ... the H4D will go bye-bye, and so will most of my Sony kit. Leaving the S2 and M9 to enjoy as I amble off into the sunset

    That day is actually getting uncomfortably close. Thanks for reminding me ... !!!!

    -Marc
    Hahaha.... Thank you Marc for your wonderful reply. Again it makes sense, and why I see a lot of retired folks driving Porsches <joking>
    Unfortunately for me now, I will have to tell me wife that need both a Bentley and a Porsche!

    Po

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Would a pro photographer use the 645D? I have been a working pro for over 35 years and the 645D has become my workhorse. I used to have a Contax 645 with the P25 back, that was a fine camera as well. My point is, the sun does not rise or set or any particular camera or brand, and contrary to an earlier post, paying more doesn't necessarily mean you are getting more in real world application. My clients and print buyers would never see a difference in the images taken with either system.
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by craigrudlin View Post
    ...

    I must also in fairness admit, that my greatest hesitancy with regard to the Leica is the price and this is especially noteworthy
    since it is a single integrated system, without an obvious upgrade pathway and from a company without a track record in MF
    (i.e. may or may not stay in this format).

    Thank you, I deeply appreciate your help.
    I had this concern as well 1 year ago. However I have developped trust to Leica since with both systems- M9 and S2 they have sold more cameras than expected and planned.
    There latest financial results look quite good, and I have had very good response from Leica Germany S2 Service whenever I have had any questions.

    Regarding price:
    The Leica M lenses I own have held there value or even increased in value - the part which looses money is the camera. Thats why I felt ok spending so much money on Leica S-lenses. With those new lenses I feel "futureproof", more important for me than an "update programm" for the back/camera is that lenses are a long term "investment".

    But in the end I would say user interface is the most important point-and a very personal one. Thats why I would really recommend to test the alternatives as much as possible and them make your decision.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    A VERY important point. Resale value is in the lenses, not the bodies. As to the upgrade paths, whether it is a new back using the Phase or Leaf platforms on an existing camera or the integrated bodies like the S2 or 645D, the amount of money needed to upgrade seems to be near equivalent. Technical improvements made in each new generation of camera body are also a consideration, it isn't all about the sensor after all.
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pophoto View Post
    Hahaha.... Thank you Marc for your wonderful reply. Again it makes sense, and why I see a lot of retired folks driving Porsches <joking>
    Unfortunately for me now, I will have to tell me wife that need both a Bentley and a Porsche!

    Po
    Actually Po, for what this stuff costs ... rather than amble. I could roar off into the sunset in a Porsche.

    Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Actually Po, for what this stuff costs ... rather than amble. I could roar off into the sunset in a Porsche.

    Marc
    Most definitely, but on top of your photographic gear, who is to assume that you DON'T already have one
    Last edited by pophoto; 16th September 2011 at 19:11.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    As a Leica M8 and now M9 user I've watched lots of people drift away into digital MF over the last two or three years. I've shot with a Leica S2, but in all honesty I would have to sell all of my M gear/lenses to afford it with one lens. I have also shot with a friend's H4D50 which was great but again too much for me. It was not until the Pentax 645D came along that I was able to make the move into digital MF by selling off my Canon gear whilst keeping all my Leica stuff.
    My main concern was the quality of the Pentax lenses (not the quality or build of the camera/sensor), but that so far has proved to be an unnecessary worry.

    Pentax should be applauded for making digital MF possible for a larger number of photographers. Outside of the elevated membership of GETdpi it is still a very expensive camera.

    I too would question the assertion that images produced by the H4D40 would differ significantly from those of the Pentax.

    Jeff

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Now if you have the cash, one thing about the S2 is that it might just have the best glass on any camera today.

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    On the other hand, the S2, despite the best glass, may be crippled by the lack of its own software as in C1 and Phocus.
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffg53 View Post
    On the other hand, the S2, despite the best glass, may be crippled by the lack of its own software as in C1 and Phocus.
    Is it really that bad that they don't? Isn't LR or C1 enough?

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Now if you have the cash, one thing about the S2 is that it might just have the best glass on any camera today.
    Some people still think it is flawed by it's application: For example the way it tethers is slow, or the mirror is too significant, not sure if it has a delay or not and couple of other things I've heard too. Perhaps someone can confirm or deny it here for clarity, since I'm keen on the S2 as well :P

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    As a Hasselblad user, I know that nothing comes near Phocus in extracting the best from a RAW file. Hasselblad provides the complete workflow from lense to software. I guess it comes down to how well Adobe handle Leica files. I can't see it as a high priority item for Adobe.

    The S2 show-stopper for me has always been the 2:3 ratio. I am much more comfortable with h645 but someone coming from a DSLR may not consider it an issue.
    Cheers,
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffg53 View Post
    On the other hand, the S2, despite the best glass, may be crippled by the lack of its own software as in C1 and Phocus.
    Interesting assumption, Hasselblad has Phocus software that really helps make up for lens artifacts. I know because I used to shoot Hasselblad and used Phocus exclusively. I used C1 when the M8 came out and welcomed LR with open arms when it became available. I shoot with an S2 and process it using LR and don't feel like I am missing anything. A well exposed, well lit image - what do I have to manipulate?
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Obviously nothing! In my ignorance, I sharpen and apply a few other tweeks to every image i take.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Repeat: Application, application, application ... is the answer to any of these personal preferences, and how a system may or may not meet your needs is what shapes these opinions. There is no wrong or right way, only your way or ... (cue Frank Sinatra), "My Way".

    Ratios: 2:3, 3:4, 1:1 ... we've all worked with each of them and have learned to compose with each of these ratios. We may have a preference, but each has its place ... I personally have an affection for 1:1 from having used a Hasselblad 500/203 legacy system for 40 years.

    Actually, I like working in all three common ratios, and for many of MY applications the S2's 2:3 ratio actually works very well. Like when shooting groups of people where a 1:1 or 3:4 usually gets cropped top and bottom to a 2:3 anyway ... or full length portrait, or environmental portraits. I also personally prefer 2:3 for most wide angle work.

    However for commercial work it is different. When I'm shooting wheels for General Motors it is always a 1:1 crop, and a typical magazine page w/bleed is 3:3.8 ratio

    When I shoot a wedding, I'm also using a 35mm DSLR & Leica M9 and the S2 is the same ratio ... so all proof images are 4x6. Like wise, the most common wedding album size is 12" X 19" spreads, which is a 2:3 ratio.

    So, it depends on application, application, application.

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pophoto View Post
    Some people still think it is flawed by it's application: For example the way it tethers is slow, or the mirror is too significant, not sure if it has a delay or not and couple of other things I've heard too. Perhaps someone can confirm or deny it here for clarity, since I'm keen on the S2 as well :P
    The S2 can be tethered two ways: using the Leica Image shuttle, or directly to Lightroom. I do not like the Image Shuttle at all because the program window is too small and I shoot tethered to dual 30" screens. I love the LR tether, where the last image shot is added to the Library and fills the Development screen so I can see it from the studio floor.

    Slow tethered capture is mis-information, or old information. Leica updated the S2 firmware, so now you simply select lossless DNG compressed as the S2 capture file format. While the S2 may not be the fastest thethered, it most certainly isn't the slowest either. So, it is NOT slow ... unless you have a wimpy Graphics Card ... which is true for any MFD tethered shooting.

    Not sure what "the mirror is too significant" means. If that refers to size, well, it IS medium Format so the mirror is bigger than in a 35mm. If that means mirror slap, the S2 mirror is pretty well dampened ... but again, it is larger than a 35mm, so that comment may be from those coming from 35mm DSLRs. The Hasselblad mirror is even bigger than the S2's, but that can be somewhat mitigated by programming in a slight mirror delay when working hand-held. That may be a good suggestion for a S2 firmware upgrade.

    What are the "couple of other things" ?

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffg53 View Post
    As a Hasselblad user, I know that nothing comes near Phocus in extracting the best from a RAW file. Hasselblad provides the complete workflow from lense to software. I guess it comes down to how well Adobe handle Leica files. I can't see it as a high priority item for Adobe.
    Old news countered by current news. Adobe LR now works even better with the S2 files because Leica issued a firmware update with an improved proprietary embedded profile, and Adobe added full S2 lens corrections ... which was interesting to see in action, because unlike H/C lenses in Phocus, some S2 lenses show very little correction being needed. The comparative difference between the S35mm LR lens corrections and the HC/35mm DAC corrections demonstrates how badly Hasselblad needs to update their 35mm, like they have with the 50mm-II

    Also, Hasselblad files MUST be opened in Phocus, then saved as tiffs to preserve the DAC lens corrections ... where the LR lens corrections for S2 optics remain as non-distructive DNG RAW files in the LR library for that job. Big difference

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    That's excellent news for Leica users, Marc. I'm delighted to see that Leica and Adobe have made it happen.
    Cheers,
    Jeff
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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    Quote Originally Posted by pophoto View Post
    Is it really that bad that they don't? Isn't LR or C1 enough?
    At first, I thought it was a mistake on Leica's part to not issue proprietary RAW software. With the current firmware update and new S2 embedded profile, and Adobe S2 lens corrections, that concern has proven to be unfounded.

    IMO, Lightroom is the fastest, most diverse RAW software out there, and gets better with every new version. The incredible array of tools to use directly on the RAW file in a non-distructive manner is unmatched ... and the ability to open a file in PS or any 3rd party processing software like Nik Silver Effex without leaving LR to do it, then have that file placed back into the job's LR Library is my workflow dream come true.

    C1 is great, Phocus is great ... and both are fussy snails compared to LR for my applications. And, NO I do not feel I'm missing anything by using LR. The more I use it the "luckier" I get. Like with any software, skill plays the key role. Using the same software rather than three or four, promotes skill IMHO.

    -Marc

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    Re: leica S2 vs. hasselblad H4D-40 vs. IQ140

    LR works very well, C1 can aso be used for the S2.
    For my taste I dont miss anything Softwarewise when working with the S2 files.

    Mirror is very well damped IMO for such a camera.
    That delay option might make sense, I havent felt a need for it so far.

    On tethered shooting I cant comment because I dont do it.

    If I was forced to criticize something I would say the top display could be a little brighter in bright light, and maybe also the information display inside the viewfinder could be a little brighter and eventually include a little bit more information.

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