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Thread: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

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    My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Guess what?
    Sometimes I get tired of the digital back thing : carrying the batteries (4), wake up cords , LCC card, memory cards, ...
    And then the processing thing wich can take time for some shots.
    And then the problem of keeping all these files.

    So, I made a break and went back in time : I boughta 6X9 film back for my ALPA 12 swa. I put a roll of Fuji ACROS 100, shot, processed and scanned it.

    What a surprise, the resolution is amazing (scan LS9000 at 4000dpi), the very fine grain of the film is here and I am getting 12800X8700 TIFF full of informations.
    Then I gently put the negative in his protection.

    Ok I still love my P25+ Phase back. But the combination of ApoDigitar schneider lens (47mm) with a fine grain modern black and white film outsdand all my hopes. Nothing digital beat this actually I think (maybe the special BW Phase back).

    Are you looking for an outsdanding back in resolution for BW landscape : you've got it the ALP 6X9 back is the one.

    I did not scan yet my rolls of Provia wich look fantastic naked eye.
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    Senior Member mathomas's Avatar
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !


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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    yes, albeit LS9000 cost is not pretty

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    can you post a 100% crop?

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    how good is the live view ? ;-)

    i hate scanners... but sometimes film rocks !

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    Senior Member Thierry's Avatar
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Yes, it would be nice to see a sample image.

    Thierry

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Spinnler View Post
    can you post a 100% crop?
    Thierry Hagenauer
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    As much as I love film, this has not been my experience...I used to own a Sinar 22mp back that I used on a Hy6. I decided to test it against 645 Fuji Acros developed in Xtol and scanned with a Hasselblad X5. I did not try to match the contrast or the look, I was just interested in resolution. Despite the fact that the scanner has far more "pixels", the real resolution was not comparable. This is primarily because digital's pixels are sharp all the way to the extinction resolution, while film gets progressively softer. You could make the scanner 1 gigapixel, and it would not make the film itself any sharper.
    And please please don't get me wrong, I run a custom black and white lab and do this stuff on a daily basis. I absolutely love film and think it enlarges extremely well (6x9 can easily go to 1mx1.25m), but in terms of sheer resolution, digital wins at comparable sensor/film sizes. 6x9 might outresolve a 22mp back in the best of conditions, but it is pushing it. Note, I don't say out-enlarge! Film enlarges better to a certain extent given its natural looking sharpness falloff. These photos were taken with the same camera, same lens, same distance, same aperture and so on. The only difference was that one was film, and the other digital.

    Film:

    Digital:


    Acros crop:

    22mp Sinar E54LV crop:
    My photos are here: http://www.stuartrichardson.com and more recent work here: http://stuartrichardson.tumblr.com/ Please have a look at my book!
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    Senior Member PSon's Avatar
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    I too recently went back and shoot film again. This time with my Alpa, Cambo, Fuji GX680, Sinar, Linhof and always the Hasselblad V systems. Unfortunately there is no live view but the ground glass on these systems are so bright and a great joy to work with.

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Stuart, your experience enlight my thoughts. I have followed and appreciated your film posts for a while now. I did not make such comparaison as you made. And you show us that my joy as to be tempered.

    But I use both technology and the DB made me forgot the quality and look I could obtain with film.
    I'll post example next days.
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Thanks very much for the kind words! I certainly did not mean to rain on your parade though. I also use both film and digital, and I think they are both capable of making spectacular prints. In the above photos, I also think the film looks much better! It just does not have as much resolution...that is really the only criticism I have for it aesthetically. For me, digital wins for sheer convenience and resolution (and dynamic range for color photography), while film looks better straight out of the box, is more enjoyable to shoot (in most cases), and usually makes a more aesthetically pleasing print when you can print it optically in a wet-darkroom. I cannot do without one or the other, and I hope I never have to.
    My photos are here: http://www.stuartrichardson.com and more recent work here: http://stuartrichardson.tumblr.com/ Please have a look at my book!
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    It's interesting. In my experience, and as Stuart mentioned, digital doesn't seem to handle extreme enlargement as well as film. Of course, if you scan your film and don't print optically I find anything lower than 250dpi starts to break up. It doesn't look bad, just the digital hybrid process starts to become evident. In terms of absolute resolution, I agree that digital wins. There's just something magical about the organic appearance of film grain though. Six of one, half a dozen of the other?

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Its an interesting comparison because certainly the digital files in the comparison seem crisper and the text on the books seems better reproduced, however if you look at the tonal range there seems to be much more life in the darks that the film captured, more feel. Look at the top of the spines. Each method seems to have advantages to me. I myself sense more life in the film capture.

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Here is a post of a Fuji Acros 100. Holiday picture of Venice, taken with ALPA 12swa and SK 47mm on 6X9 film back (no rise). I made a simple 16bit gray scan on the LS9000 (one pass).



    and here is a 100% crop of the little house behind the gondole :



    handheld, no tripod and no sharpening on the 100% crop.

    I'd like to try with 50 iso BW film and a tripod to see the result.



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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    I cant see the photo

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    It might be a dropbox setting problem, i'm looking to fix it.
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Hope this works better :



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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Still no good I'm afraid.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    my public folder on dropbox is not working. Sorry for all these posts. I'll try again.
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Stuart's example above shows how subjective one's opinion can be when it come to aesthetics

    IMO the digital image has more life in it and a much more 3D feel. I see it in the books' brighter area where I can see tonal variations and the actual texture of the paperback compared to the same areas being totally flat in the film image

    Yair
    Yair Shahar | Product Manager | Phase One | Mamiya Leaf
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Yes, Yair but you'd almost have to write that working for Leaf as you do. Certainly a mater of perspective. I imagine that Yoel would take you into his office for a talk if you wrote you preferred film. :-)

    The good thing is that the new 80mp backs produce a more film like file than ever (IMHO). Not talking about grain, but overall look, the kind you get when you make a print or step back from the monitor instead of zooming in.

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Quote Originally Posted by EH21 View Post
    Yes, Yair but you'd almost have to write that working for Leaf as you do. Certainly a mater of perspective. I imagine that Yoel would take you into his office for a talk if you wrote you preferred film. :-)


    You're right and I should also say that my film experience is limited to a 3 month darkroom course (1 hr/ week) somewhere in the early 90's so even if I wanted to I'm not able to say I prefer film... even if I really, really wanted to

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !


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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Hmm, is it me or am I stuck in a repeating time warp. I believe I've seen all this discussion before, before, before, before, before ... ... (and I don't mean Stef's enjoyment of shooting film btw - more power to you! )

    Film & digital - just different. I'm not sure that resolution has got much to do with it anyway. You either like the look of one or the other and convincing one group or the other to change their views over the capabilities in an apples vs pears comparison probably isn't going to happen.

    Oh well, back to the peanut gallery
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    It is not about film or digital really. It is about ego. Just saying. No need to shoot the messenger.

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    It is not about film or digital really. It is about ego. Just saying. No need to shoot the messenger.
    No offense meant from my end - just a feeling of groundhog day.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    The funny thing is we are all photographers where you would think enjoying each others work would you unite us rather dividing us because of the process. Perhaps we just forgot about the glass plate vs. film wars of the turn of the last century. I am sure they just hung the daguerreotypests.

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    There is only one thing better than film--beer (or a really good hard cider).

    There are some good wines, too...
    Last edited by Shashin; 22nd September 2011 at 17:21. Reason: Clarifying beer.

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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Hey guys, I post this to express my joy to watch big negatives and positives on film. No war in the mind : my internal thinking was a bit more complex. Few years ago I jumped into MFBD for 8000 euros and got a ... P25+ and alpa 12swa ; the new Phase back are appealing but as I am not yet a millionar I asked myself :
    am I still happy with what I get with this set up ? and the answer was yes. In parallel I have always shoot 35mm film and 6X6, so I gave a try to this 6X9 back on the alpa.
    The results pleased me so much : I have the feeling I won't need to go bigger.

    Is there much or less resolution ? Maybe not as Stuart pointed it with his test, but for me these BW negatives I scanned looks far more better than my BW out of the P25+.

    Resolution is good when you need it. I have enough with what I have.

    That's it, enjoy shooting guys whatever camera you are using.

    By the way Shashin, you're right there are also very good wines. ;-)

    PS : and I don't like the way digital stuff loose his value on the market.
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    Re: My new 111,4 Mpixels back on the ALPA is amazing !

    Quote Originally Posted by steflaurent974 View Post
    Resolution is good when you need it. I have enough with what I have.

    That's it, enjoy shooting guys whatever camera you are using.
    Absolutely. I couldn't agree more.

    PS : and I don't like the way digital stuff loose his value on the market.
    And this particular aspect does indeed suck but in general medium format seems to fare better than consumer gear I find, plus as you've found with your P25+ (I just bought one too btw!) you still have a great imaging platform regardless of the 'latest' technology released in the last couple of years. You don't need 40, 60, 80mp to shoot great art. It's nice, sure, but you don't NEED it in general. I like the fact that my IQ160 has 60mp but for many situations the same sensor size and MFDB capabilities at 20mp would do as well for a print.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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