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Thread: MF EVIL/RF?

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    MF EVIL/RF?

    Hello all, First postings here, but I have been on LL and other forums. I see the same money spending fools are here .

    I've gone in and out of digital medium format systems, unfortunately for me they have never worked out quite right. I almost sprung for the pentax, but I knew it was going to be another boat anchor I never wanted to take out. I'm constantly tempted by tech cameras, but lack of longer lenses and ease of focusing have held me back. Yes, I have done my share of scale focusing, on horror of horrors, film, but it's not what I am looking for in ease of use. Tech cameras always seem a little fragile to me as well.

    I guess what my credit card is waiting for is the equivalent to the Mamiya 7. A couple nice manual focus interchangable lenses (highly corrected ultrawide, wide, standard, short tele), rf (or live view focuspeaking) focus, compact, fairly abuse worthy, ~40mp on a large sensor.

    Am I the only one? Seems like something fuji could make from its parts bin. I guess the market is just too small and I should just go buy an alpa...

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Not all of us feel this way and truly enjoy our boat anchors but sure love to see a RF MF setup. Now you know the earth is 3/4 water as you realize when it gets to 1/4 water than you can breath again. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    If Fuji could "digitalize" this http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...ng_Camera.html, I'd sure be interested.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by stephengilbert View Post
    If Fuji could "digitalize" this http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...ng_Camera.html, I'd sure be interested.
    Dont make me look at that. I've actually been toying with the idea of selling my 6x12 pano camera and buying one of those.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    If someone made a medium format digital the same design, shape, size and weight as a Bronica RF645 or Mamiya 6 I'd be trying to figure out how to hock my deceased mother's grave to buy it.

    I'm so tempted, yet again, to hunt up a nice RF645 ... I just know it would mostly sit on the shelf. Sigh.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    The Leica S2 is pretty close to the Mamiya 7II, only SLR design. That's the way I'd go if I wanted a digital replacement for my Mamiya kit. Pity about the 3:2 ratio though. Oh... And the price isn't so appealing either.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by NicholasRab View Post
    Tech cameras always seem a little fragile to me as well.
    I understand your comment in regards to the lenses since they aren't even drip-tight. But an Alpa TC or STC is pretty robust. If for no other reason that there just isn't much there to break!

    Dave

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    NicholasRab,

    MFD, has decidedly more quirks than any other camera system i've ever used. The Sony A900, with Zeiss glass is amazing though. Yes, it's not MFD, but a reliable 25MP full frame camera with fantastic lenses! I've recently decided to shoot film, and digital, I suggest looking at a Horseman SW612 with Rodenstock, and Schneider lenses, in addition to Alpa. The Fuji suggestion is a good one too, but I don't know much about their lenses. While MFD, is convenient and the DR is stunning, it's about the flow, end use, and print size. MFD, is the only camera system, where you don't get what you paid for, imo. A $1000 scanner will get you 95% of a digital photo with stunning dynamic range and dmax. Film and digital both have their places, but film allows one to compose and expose with a more thoughtful approach. I think most issues with MFD, are the camera/DB combination.
    Last edited by johnnygoesdigital; 19th November 2011 at 07:09.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    I would say a Leica M9 is your closest candidate.

    If Mamiya would release a 6D, I woud be waiting in line as well. I had been shooting with Mamiya 6s and Horseman SW612, Widelux, and a a few other 4x5 and 35mm cameras. I ran my own color darkroom at home. And then it really became difficult to get chemistry--it is Hazmat and I had to be bought in quanities I could not use. So, I decided to take the jump to MFD. I ended up with a Pentax 645D--one of the least quirkless cameras I have ever used.

    It took me some time to get used to the SLR thing again--I have always favored the rangefinder/viewfinder. It feels big (but not heavy) compared to a Mamiya 6 or SW612, but I am not carrying the film anymore or having to reload after 12 or 6 exposures. I did not think I would like stitched panos, but I have actually liked the freedom of choising the aspect ratio of the shot to match the scene--I have always shot full frame and I still do with stitching as I am defining the the field of view. I take panos hand held and with a pano head.

    It always takes me a little time to come to terms with a new camera or system. I am really enjoying the 645D. I bought it for my personal work and it is a great walk around camera. It is really great in low light--ISO 1600 is better than many 400 speed films.

    There are certainly more choices of optics compared to an MF rangefinder system. The manual focus 35mm is compact. The new D FA 55m is also a good size, especially if you ditch the hood. I picked up the 67 105mm f/2.4 as a telephoto for its size and speed. It was OK, but I replaced it with the manual focus 120mm macro, which is a stellar lens. The new 25mm is wide, but it is also large. I also picked up the 90 degree angle finder which gives the system some nice flexiblity and I also replaced the sceen to a gridded one. (And you can get a film body if you want to use the optics with film.)

    The Pentax is simply a modern DSLR. That may not be the camera for you. It really came along at an important point in my work and I have really come to enjoy it. You may want to see if you can rent one, or another MDF system for that matter.

    But other than that, the M9 is the only thing that comes close to what you are asking for. I am fairly confident that Mamiya does not want the headache of a 7D. And the closest thing to a mirrorless MDF would be a tech camera with a Phase IQ back.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    The testament to the success of digital is the existence of Forums like this - and the display of enthusiast photography you see which ranges from interesting to stunning imagery.

    Each individual gets to decide what teh economics are for themselves and fortunately today there are many many cost efficient ways of enjoying the benefits of digital photography in MF size and for the benefits which you either value or don't.

    I want a digital XPan - bu I am not holding my breath waiting for one- and besides there is a lot of crop capability in a MF digi back to deliver the aspect ration one wants

    Good Luck and happy shooting - which is what it is al about anyway.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnygoesdigital View Post
    NicholasRab,
    I suggest looking at a Horseman SW612 with Rodenstock, and Schneider lenses, in addition to Alpa. The Fuji suggestion is a good one too, but I don't know much about their lenses. While MFD, is convenient and the DR is stunning, it's about the flow, end use, and print size. MFD, is the only camera system, where you don't get what you paid for, imo. A $1000 scanner will get you 95% of a digital photo with stunning dynamic range and dmax. Film and digital both have their places, but film allows one to compose and expose with a more thoughtful approach. I think most issues with MFD, are the camera/DB combination.
    Interesting observation, I actually currently (though irregularly) shoot with a Fotoman 6x12 with a 58xl super-angulon. A bit sad that company went out of business, the camera is rock solid and really delivers.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnygoesdigital View Post
    NicholasRab,

    MFD, has decidedly more quirks than any other camera system i've ever used. The Sony A900, with Zeiss glass is amazing though. Yes, it's not MFD, but a reliable 25MP full frame camera with fantastic lenses! I've recently decided to shoot film, and digital, I suggest looking at a Horseman SW612 with Rodenstock, and Schneider lenses, in addition to Alpa. The Fuji suggestion is a good one too, but I don't know much about their lenses. While MFD, is convenient and the DR is stunning, it's about the flow, end use, and print size. MFD, is the only camera system, where you don't get what you paid for, imo. A $1000 scanner will get you 95% of a digital photo with stunning dynamic range and dmax. Film and digital both have their places, but film allows one to compose and expose with a more thoughtful approach. I think most issues with MFD, are the camera/DB combination.
    Strange, I just posted once, but do not see my response. Maybe I am double posting now...

    Regardless, I currently shoot with a couple systems. One of them a 6x12, a Fotoman with a 58xl Super Angulon. Its a great camera, super solid and good results. Mucking with film is a bit of a pain though for me.

    I also have a 5d2 with the newer t/s lenses. That system is a real earner for me. Its much like a hammer though. Great tool, gets the job done, no emotion to it.

    I guess I just need to work that 6x12 a little more. Shame Fotoman went out of business, I'd love to find another helical for a longer lens.

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    Senior Member johnnygoesdigital's Avatar
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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    I've looked at both cameras myself. When I saw Brian Kosoff's 6x12 images from a Fotoman, I was convinced that this was indeed, a great camera, capable of producing stunning images. He also mentioned, that its constructed beautifully. Alpa absolutely, makes a great camera, very light and portable and digital capable, but no parallax type RF. The Alpa TC, has no movements, very reliable and uses LF lenses. It can be stripped down to the minimalist style with no viewfinder, but with a DB, who needs one?

    I should also clarify, my comment about MFD, not getting what you paid for... Db's usually are reliable, it's the camera combo that gets in the way. When someone pays those kind of prices, it should be the only camera they'll ever need, and far too often, they don't meet those expectations. But with the Alpa, you just mate a LF lens on a DB...good to shoot.

    Optechs Digital, has great info on these cameras.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnygoesdigital View Post
    But with the Alpa, you just mate a LF lens on a DB...good to shoot.

    Optechs Digital, has great info on these cameras.
    In my experience it ain't quite that simple, especially if light conditions are less than sunny 16. If you don't use/have sensor+ then you're limited to about 100 - 200ISO. In order to use zone focusing you need to stop down to at least f/11 on the 35mm for approximately 3meters to infinity to be acceptably sharp! unless you're better than I at distance estimation (which I fully admit I'm not the greatest at).

    So on a sunny 16 day, using ISO 200 (which for my P45+ is pretty noisy) you're exposure at f/11 would be 1/500: certainly do-able. But lowering the ISO to 100 decreases the shutter speed to 1/200; pretty much close to my limit for hand holding and still getting acceptable sharpness.

    So for bright landscapes and buildings, hand hold holding may work. But for me anything less than sunny 16 conditions would be difficult to accomplish with acceptable noise and sharpness levels.

    Add to the fact that with Phase backs you need to wake the back up and then release the shutter (unless you want to buy the one push cable release for about $500), and basically there no longer exists a decisive moment!

    Bottom line is I don't see the Alpa TC as a viable substitute for a MF/RF.
    Of course this is just from my experience.
    Best,
    Bob

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnygoesdigital View Post
    I've looked at both cameras myself. When I saw Brian Kosoff's 6x12 images from a Fotoman, I was convinced that this was indeed, a great camera, capable of producing stunning images. He also mentioned, that its constructed beautifully.
    Its constructed like the proverbial brick *house. We've all heard how legendary xyz camera was in wartime. I think I would take the fotoman body up against any other camera as far as sheer bludgeoning power goes. Of course, ability to pound nails is not really the primary purpose of a camera, and it can be overdone. Who knows, maybe the fuji 617 could take it out.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Aren't we missing the two most obvious issues?

    1. There isn't even a sensor currently that's bigger than 6x4.5 ANYWHERE in the commercial world. So, your baseline would be a 645-sized RF like the Fuji GA645 or the Bronica 645. I don't know anything about them, but at best they have a limited supply of lenses, and at worst they are fixed lens cameras.

    So, there is no stock of lenses to actually use, unless you go back to the extra weight/cost of Mamiya 6 or 7 lenses and deal with the crop factor.

    2. Wouldn't the increased incidence angle on the sensor wreck havoc with the edge of the sensor? Offset microlenses would help, but it would just mean the sensor design would be that much more expensive.

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    Re: MF EVIL/RF?

    Quote Originally Posted by NicholasRab View Post
    Hello all, First postings here, but I have been on LL and other forums. I see the same money spending fools are here .

    I've gone in and out of digital medium format systems, unfortunately for me they have never worked out quite right. I almost sprung for the pentax, but I knew it was going to be another boat anchor I never wanted to take out. I'm constantly tempted by tech cameras, but lack of longer lenses and ease of focusing have held me back. Yes, I have done my share of scale focusing, on horror of horrors, film, but it's not what I am looking for in ease of use. Tech cameras always seem a little fragile to me as well.

    I guess what my credit card is waiting for is the equivalent to the Mamiya 7. A couple nice manual focus interchangable lenses (highly corrected ultrawide, wide, standard, short tele), rf (or live view focuspeaking) focus, compact, fairly abuse worthy, ~40mp on a large sensor.

    Am I the only one? Seems like something fuji could make from its parts bin. I guess the market is just too small and I should just go buy an alpa...
    You may want to take a look at this discussion:
    http://www.hasselbladinfo.com/forum/...ead.php?t=6032

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