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Thread: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

  1. #1
    FabianB
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    Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Hello all,
    I'd like to upgrade from the ZD back because I'd like something that operates faster and allows proper review of exposure and sharpness. Now I have some questions about various DBs from Leaf. Sorry if I beat a dead horse...... and by the way I use the camera mainly for landscape.

    • Is it correct to assume that the Aptus 65 and 75 are same in terms of image quality on pixel level and that the only difference between them is the sensor size + number of pixels?
    • Is it true that the 75 has better high ISO performance than the 75s?
    • Which of these 2 backs has a better picture quality, the Aptus 65 or the Aptus II5??
    • Is there a discernible image quality difference between the ZD back, the Aptus 54s and the Aptus II5?
    • Last but not least is any of the above DBs suited for long exposure photography of say 30-60secs without noise and hot pixels?


    Thanks a lot for your effort to shed some light on the topic!!

    Fabian

  2. #2
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Your going from old sensor to old sensor. So in effect your not gaining much in the way of speed, ISO and the latest sensors. Frankly i would go Phase P40+ or Hassy H40 and above and get in the game with new sensors. Okay my IQ 140 is for sale but hey this was not a plug. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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  3. #3
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    At least get to a P40+ i have several folks that want to buy my back but have a P40+ in there hands right now. If your interested than post it.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

  4. #4
    FabianB
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Hello Guy,
    You are the worst enemy of my bank account but I will give it a good thought!
    For all that has to go quick or requires high ISO I use my DSLR, but when it comes to ultimate print quality I love medium format.

    What is the approximate cost of a P40+ and does the IQ140 sit far above it?

    Greetings, Fabian

  5. #5
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Well even getting to ISO 200 is a big plus sometimes when your in the wind and need the speed so It is very handy and that sensor in the P40 , P65 Iq 140 and 160 will easily get there with good quality. Plus everything else is like a rocket ship compared to the ZD which I had BTW, great back but slower than a turtle to get a preview on screen. Seriously if your coming from the ZD than make a decent jump , this is economical a better choice. I went ZD, P25,P30, P40 than IQ 160 and now IQ 140. Now luckily it was not to expensive but looking back on it I wish I jumped in bigger steps but at the time it was limited . Today its a better choice to get up the scale. In all honesty i would get to at least 40mpx as I think it is a nice sweet spot on backs still very fast the crop sensor takes any corner issues out of play with any system. Its just clean all the way though the system. Now used a P40+ is probably around 9-10 K new they are 13k I believe. Maybe a little less depends on age , warranty and all that good stuff. IQ 140 Used obviously mine is at 16200.00 right now. Buying brand new from like P40 to IQ 160 is a 10k difference on average same with P65+ and 160. So it was a 10 k difference in the new department. Obviously this varies also sometimes but those are pretty good numbers right now.

    And BTW yes there are contracts on my head from spouses , no question about it. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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  6. #6
    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by FabianB View Post
    Hello all,
    I'd like to upgrade from the ZD back because I'd like something that operates faster and allows proper review of exposure and sharpness. Now I have some questions about various DBs from Leaf. Sorry if I beat a dead horse...... and by the way I use the camera mainly for landscape.

    • Is it correct to assume that the Aptus 65 and 75 are same in terms of image quality on pixel level and that the only difference between them is the sensor size + number of pixels?
    • Is it true that the 75 has better high ISO performance than the 75s?
    • Which of these 2 backs has a better picture quality, the Aptus 65 or the Aptus II5??
    • Is there a discernible image quality difference between the ZD back, the Aptus 54s and the Aptus II5?
    • Last but not least is any of the above DBs suited for long exposure photography of say 30-60secs without noise and hot pixels?


    Thanks a lot for your effort to shed some light on the topic!!

    Fabian
    Fabian,

    I'm not sure that you'll see much picture quality differences between the 65/75 and II 6/7 but you will notice improvements in the electronics with respect to the LCD and speed. Colour with the Leaf is wonderful with all of them which I think is a testament to Leaf's special 'sauce' vs perhaps the electronic ingredients. (It's why there's a place for the Credo in a world of IQ backs). The II 7 & 75 (33mp) are just bigger than the II 6 & 65 (28mp) but otherwise the same comparable technologies. I can't remember the 75 vs 75s difference but I believe it was just processor/LCD related - not sensor etc.

    As regards long exposure, and also high ISO, the Leaf backs aren't really at their best much above base ISO in my experience (I still have a 65 myself too and wouldn't really ever shoot it beyond ISO 100 and certainly not at 800!). 30s is pretty much your limit for decent long exposure and I'd say that certainly with my 65 that's pushing it even at base ISO.

    Will a Dalsa based P40+ be a better back? Sure - definitely if you want higher ISO support. When it comes to the colour rendering, it'll be different to the Leaf backs - and different between Phase Kodak vs Dalsa sensor based Phase backs too. What works best for you is a different question and likely determined by what you shoot. I can only relate to my own experiences with Leaf Aptus 65, Phase P40+ and IQ160 - I prefer the look of my IQ vs the P40+, the P40+/IQ are more versatile than the Leaf, but the colour from even my Aptus 65 was arguably nicer and more subtle for landscape shooting than the P40+. I very nearly went with another Leaf when kind of 'forced' to upgrade my 65 (dropping your back will do that!) ... the low ISO restrictions, lack of sensor+ and superior overall flexibility of the Phase won out. I love my IQ but I could have very easily have gone down the Leaf II route as an alternative - the Leaf UI is very comparable IMHO.

    In any case, I think that any of the backs you mentioned will be better overall than your ZD.

    p.s. My car dealer has a contract out on Guy as I didn't buy a new sportscar last year and instead did a P40+ -> IQ160 upgrade instead.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"
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  7. #7
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Should be mentioned here and Yair can jump in on this . The new Credo backs from Leaf only use Capture One and the Leaf Capture software is fading away into the background as now Leaf is part of Phase so Yair can certainly address further continued support for the ongoing older backs. Yes Leaf Capture works with them but not sure we will be seeing updates in the future. No question they are aligning themselves closer to each other The Credo is a IQ in many ways now, still some differences and such but again I would rather see Yair speak of leaf than myself. I hate being wrong and I hate bad data even worse. So hopefully he can jump in and help out on some of the older Leaf backs.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

  8. #8
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    p.s. My car dealer has a contract out on Guy as I didn't buy a new sportscar last year and instead did a P40+ -> IQ160 upgrade instead.

    Guilty as hell, no question I twisted his arm till it just about fell off and he still loves me. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I have struggled with several pre-IQ backs: two from hasselblad, one from Phase; GO IQ. it takes almost all of the unpleasantness away. Those older varieties have such a poor LCD.

    i would augur in on the IQ 140 Guy has up for sale

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I don't think upgrading to a new back is the only way to go.
    The Leaf backs you mentioned are all much better than your ZD and well worth the trouble.
    If you can afford the new ones, then go for it.


    [*]Is it correct to assume that the Aptus 65 and 75 are same in terms of image quality on pixel level and that the only difference between them is the sensor size + number of pixels?
    ==> Generally they are supposed to be very similar, but the 75 has a better reputation.

    [*]Is it true that the 75 has better high ISO performance than the 75s?
    ==> Yes.

    [*]Which of these 2 backs has a better picture quality, the Aptus 65 or the Aptus II5??
    ==> II5 used more lens area so it suffers less from lens aberations. Using ISO 100 and up the 65 will be less noisy than II5.

    [*]Is there a discernible image quality difference between the ZD back, the Aptus 54s and the Aptus II5?
    ==> The colors are different. 54s has more noise.

    [*]Last but not least is any of the above DBs suited for long exposure photography of say 30-60secs without noise and hot pixels?
    ==> All Leaf backs are not ideal for long exposures over 30 seconds.

  11. #11
    FabianB
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Thanks guys,
    You're so helpful with this wealth of information!!
    If I had to list the most important element in a digital camera, to me that would be colour. I know people say that all can be done in post processing, but my experience is different.
    It is great to read that colour reproduction is one of the strong points of the Leaf backs.

    To be honest since I moved on from the old Kodak DCS, I've been looking for something that can give me comparable colours and I'm still looking..

    Greetings, Fabian


    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    Fabian,

    I'm not sure that you'll see much picture quality differences between the 65/75 and II 6/7 but you will notice improvements in the electronics with respect to the LCD and speed. Colour with the Leaf is wonderful with all of them which I think is a testament to Leaf's special 'sauce' vs perhaps the electronic ingredients. (It's why there's a place for the Credo in a world of IQ backs). The II 7 & 75 (33mp) are just bigger than the II 6 & 65 (28mp) but otherwise the same comparable technologies. I can't remember the 75 vs 75s difference but I believe it was just processor/LCD related - not sensor etc.

    As regards long exposure, and also high ISO, the Leaf backs aren't really at their best much above base ISO in my experience (I still have a 65 myself too and wouldn't really ever shoot it beyond ISO 100 and certainly not at 800!). 30s is pretty much your limit for decent long exposure and I'd say that certainly with my 65 that's pushing it even at base ISO.

    Will a Dalsa based P40+ be a better back? Sure - definitely if you want higher ISO support. When it comes to the colour rendering, it'll be different to the Leaf backs - and different between Phase Kodak vs Dalsa sensor based Phase backs too. What works best for you is a different question and likely determined by what you shoot. I can only relate to my own experiences with Leaf Aptus 65, Phase P40+ and IQ160 - I prefer the look of my IQ vs the P40+, the P40+/IQ are more versatile than the Leaf, but the colour from even my Aptus 65 was arguably nicer and more subtle for landscape shooting than the P40+. I very nearly went with another Leaf when kind of 'forced' to upgrade my 65 (dropping your back will do that!) ... the low ISO restrictions, lack of sensor+ and superior overall flexibility of the Phase won out. I love my IQ but I could have very easily have gone down the Leaf II route as an alternative - the Leaf UI is very comparable IMHO.

    In any case, I think that any of the backs you mentioned will be better overall than your ZD.

    p.s. My car dealer has a contract out on Guy as I didn't buy a new sportscar last year and instead did a P40+ -> IQ160 upgrade instead.

  12. #12
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    But it will come down to your raw processor and here at least in my mind C1 is killer good. The trick is the backs are so tuned to it through there profiles. Too me a sensor that is shared by 4 backs says a lot and that is just Phase than Leaf shares it too.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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  13. #13
    FabianB
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Thanks shlomi,

    Can I ask one more question?
    Which of the DBs do you personally like best in terms of color??

    Fabian

    Quote Originally Posted by shlomi View Post
    [*]Is there a discernible image quality difference between the ZD back, the Aptus 54s and the Aptus II5?
    ==> The colors are different. 54s has more noise.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I haven't used all of them

    22 (=54s) - the colors are delicate but a little "old"; need some "punching" to get them going.

    65 - better but still not perfect

    II8 - very good colors

    II6 vs. 65 - I used both and didn't notice much difference in colors.

    If colors are your ultimate goal, then I would have to agree with Guy that you should get II8 or P40+. II8 is cheaper and I believe the colors are at least as good.

    Remember that there is an optical price in going to a smaller sensor.

    What I like best is II8, and from what I've seen II10 and II12 are the same in colors.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Fabian,

    I used to think the P30/P30+ was the "sweet spot" in terms of MFDBs, and by that I mean a well-balanced system that you could use to generate nice big prints, beautiful files, move quickly and not be penalized too much when your technique inadvertently got a little sloppy. Mediocre/good lenses were fine because the soft corners were cropped off. It just worked.

    My thinking has changed as MFDBs have evolved generationally. (Oh btw, my first MFDB was a Kodak 645M, and I slowly upgraded through the years going and now on my sixth MFDB---which of course, is only half as many as Guy has purchased... ) I now think the P40+ Dalsa sensor is in the sweet spot now, or rather the IQ140.

    If given the choice between the P40+ and IQ140, I'd scramble everything to make the grab for the IQ series. It is simply a much better user interface and the price of admission for the additional features is more than worth the price of admission. Larger screen, focus mask, etc. This is where you want to be!

    I would grab Guy's IQ140----That's the best deal you're going to see on a basically new MFDB. I doubt you'll need it, but you've got the added assurance of hand-holding from both Capture Integration and Guy. That's the sweet spot.

    Ken

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I agree with Ken that there is a kind of MFDB Goldilocks combination. The 40mp backs seem to be pretty close as they aren't TOO critical with glass and equally aren't plagued by the onset of moire either.

    As regards colour - well this could be another thread all of it's own. I also started with the Kodak DCS645M and actually loved both the Kodak software 'looks' & the 16mp square image format too. Actually this lineage really explains why some people like the Leaf image rendering since Kodak bought Creo which in turn morphed in to Leaf.

    I found the P40+ colours a little 'punchier' out of C1 than the equivalent Aptus 65 images (hence my slight landscape image preference). YMMV.

    You'd have to prise my IQ from my cold dead fingers ... (and yes, I do have a D800!!)
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    Fabian,

    I used to think the P30/P30+ was the "sweet spot" in terms of MFDBs, and by that I mean a well-balanced system that you could use to generate nice big prints, beautiful files, move quickly and not be penalized too much when your technique inadvertently got a little sloppy. Mediocre/good lenses were fine because the soft corners were cropped off. It just worked.

    My thinking has changed as MFDBs have evolved generationally. (Oh btw, my first MFDB was a Kodak 645M, and I slowly upgraded through the years going and now on my sixth MFDB---which of course, is only half as many as Guy has purchased... ) I now think the P40+ Dalsa sensor is in the sweet spot now, or rather the IQ140.

    If given the choice between the P40+ and IQ140, I'd scramble everything to make the grab for the IQ series. It is simply a much better user interface and the price of admission for the additional features is more than worth the price of admission. Larger screen, focus mask, etc. This is where you want to be!

    I would grab Guy's IQ140----That's the best deal you're going to see on a basically new MFDB. I doubt you'll need it, but you've got the added assurance of hand-holding from both Capture Integration and Guy. That's the sweet spot.

    Ken

    Not everybody can pay the price of admission comfortably or at all.

    I think that Aptus II 8/10/12 reached the ISO 100 image quality that is good enough for anything.

    The difference between that line and Credo, P+ or IQ is mainly in features and functionality.

    If someone is budget limited and interested solely in image quality, then II8 can be enough.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Remember the forum title:

    Medium Format Systems and Digital Backs "Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here." (Dante)

    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by shlomi View Post
    Not everybody can pay the price of admission comfortably or at all.

    I think that Aptus II 8/10/12 reached the ISO 100 image quality that is good enough for anything.

    The difference between that line and Credo, P+ or IQ is mainly in features and functionality.

    If someone is budget limited and interested solely in image quality, then II8 can be enough.
    But what is enough and what is budget minded. That varies by individual needs and desires. Your comfort level is not a general statement. I know what your saying but go talk to a guy with a S2 and 5 lenses for example. Some would say that price is right in there wheel house. Just a example.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    If you really really think about it, just about every MFDB is all you need to produce great images. Hell, I still miss that old square from the 645M and the Kodak special looks module. It's just a slippery slope as capabilities get better and better with each generation.

    But with the IQseries of Phase MFDBs, it really became more about the user interface and usability imho. And with that in mind, I think buying into the IQ140 is a better investment in preserving current value than with other MFDBs from previous generations, despite quality of image potential.

    It's definitely a personal individual value decision. Sometimes it involves more than "objective" factors, and I think more than many of us want to admit, involves some purely subjective factors in our love of photography: it makes us happy (for whatever reason) in our own personal photographic pursuits. And sometimes that's enough.

    Hey, life is short, enjoy!

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    But what is enough and what is budget minded.
    How right you are! I bought Ken's Kodak keeping it less than 90 days before going with a P30+ for about 18-months before trading it for a P45+ and earlier last year a P65.

    One of the best selling images I have was shot with the P30+ (I licensed it to Phase One and have just about sold out the edition). The P45+ was just as good but what really turned me on was the P65 and change of sensors.

    Had I to do all over again I'd start looking at trying to pick up a good used IQ back. Mainly because as good as a Plus back is the IQ is that much better. I'm hoping to trade in my P65 for either an IQ160 or 180 sometime soon.
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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by shlomi View Post
    Not everybody can pay the price of admission comfortably or at all.
    ....
    You need to do a search on this forum. Use the search terms: "Guy Mancuso" and "ski mask"


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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I can knit custom ski masks in all kinds of fabrics. Been working on a silk pattern that is just lovely for hot climates. LOL

    In all seriousness and right now Its sounds like a sales pitch because i am in the middle of this and I don't want this to be at all. But looking back at the 5 backs I bought I wish I went from the ZD right to the P40+ but was not out than but If I had that chance now and after realizing the upgrade paths that Phase does that the best deal going is the IQ right now as it puts you inline on upgrades for the next wave of backs. My most costly and it was costly was going from the P series to the IQ series. If you can get in the IQ than your better off on the next upgrade path with mine or not its the best route to take. Also Im not so sure anyone sitting on a IQ series back is even going to upgrade to the next best thing. Its pretty dang good as it stands , okay live view i can see some folks jumping on that one but after that not much really. Live view I never use so for some its a non issue. Anyway do your homework and there are many threads on this alone.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    But what is enough and what is budget minded. That varies by individual needs and desires. Your comfort level is not a general statement. I know what your saying but go talk to a guy with a S2 and 5 lenses for example. Some would say that price is right in there wheel house. Just a example.
    You sell your IQ40 for 16000, an II8 will sell for 9000.

    I was saying the the difference between II8 and P40+ and IQ40 is only in functionality, not image quality.
    The OP said he is only interest in image quality.
    It was my impression he does not want to pay for functionality.

    Is there an image quality difference between these backs?
    I've never shot with IQ40 or P40+, so I have no direct knowledge.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by shlomi View Post
    Is there an image quality difference between these backs?
    There can be an inherent image quality difference - and there can be a practical image quality difference, if the IQ user interface is so much more slick that you end up capturing pictures that you'd otherwise miss while fumbling with a Pxx. Perhaps less of an issue in the studio, more so in the field...

    Afraid I haven't used either myself, so I don't have a useful opinion to share. But I think your question, a bit more broadly construed, is very much to the point: is an IQ just more pleasant to use, or actually more productive of usable pictures? If the latter, in what kinds of situations does it make a difference?

  26. #26
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    There is a LOT more difference between the 8 and IQ 140. But yes it is functionality but if you never shot them than you have to understand that functionality has a premium for it and that is up to a individual to decide but I can say with almost certainty every IQ owner will say it was worth that premium. It comes down to a I nailed it I know it and I can move on instead of well I'm not so sure have to wait to I get it on a computer. I owned them both and to me the IQ us worth the premium in a large way. It takes a lot of guess work out. Now if you go buy a P40 new compared to mine LNIB than your talking a 4 k difference than 10k buying a new 140. Sorry that's a freaking steal and I just have to say it. No offense to Leaf but I am not a fan of there LCD setup in that series. There is a huge difference visually to the shooter with the IQ and I mean a big difference.

    With that I'm stepping out of this conversation , it sounds like a sales pitch. Was not my intention but the IQ back is the best thing going if not why did Leaf introduce the Credo. No one wants to guess. We want big LCDs that inform us not leaving you guessing
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Great value for money where you can actually see what you've shot and zoom to something other than a pixelated approximation:
    Leaf Aptus II series

    Sex on a stick Ferrari of a back - really - a couple of minutes with one and you're doomed:
    IQ series (and I assume Credo too)

    Great image quality but what the heck did I just capture beyond the histogram and low res rendering? :
    P series.

    I've enjoyed using all three and they're all going to smoke a ZD whichever one you decide on.

    (Btw, I'm not being a shill for Guy but that really is going to be a sweet deal for someone ... Thankfully I don't need another one!)
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    It takes a lot of guess work out.
    If I understand correctly, then this is your bottom line.
    But for instance for a 100% tethered shooter - this means nothing.
    If I was taking my II8 to the field, then there is no argument it is lacking.
    In the studio I do not feel anything missing other that sensor size.

    BTW Leaf introduced Credo because they had the R&D already done and paid for by Phase. The chassis and connectors are practically identical to IQ. Of course Leaf would like to appeal more to field shooters if they can.

    The $7000 difference between used II8 and IQ40 - if you have a suitable laptop and no money then your consideration is $7000 vs. the inconvenience of tethering.

  29. #29
    Senior Member yaya's Avatar
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I think that you will find that any of the Leaf backs you've mentioned will run circles around your ZD when it comes to functionality and image quality

    Specifically for landscape, the histogram and average + spot meter facilities on the Aptus, IMO, are the best on any camera. The large screen, while using a relatively low resolution LCD, is very accurate for judging focus since it creates the 100% preview directly out of the RAW data with/without sharpening applied, depending on how you set it.

    The onboard operating system and the stylus allows us to implement many advanced functionality such as IPTC & copyright input, focal length input (for mechanical lenses) etc.

    On the Aptus-II and the DM models you'll enjoy the improved GUI (search for Leaf GUI on YouTube there's a clip that I created about a year ago) and if you can stretch to buying new or refurb you'll also get factory warranty

    Worth noting that all Aptus models are limited to 32 sec max exposure time. The new Credo can do longer than that

    Please let me know if you'd like to see some RAW files and if you need any help worth finding a dealer

    BR, yair
    Yair Shahar | Product Manager | Phase One | Mamiya Leaf
    e: [email protected] | m: +44(0)77 8992 8199 | yaya's blog

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by shlomi View Post
    If I understand correctly, then this is your bottom line.
    But for instance for a 100% tethered shooter - this means nothing.
    If I was taking my II8 to the field, then there is no argument it is lacking.
    In the studio I do not feel anything missing other that sensor size.

    BTW Leaf introduced Credo because they had the R&D already done and paid for by Phase. The chassis and connectors are practically identical to IQ. Of course Leaf would like to appeal more to field shooters if they can.

    The $7000 difference between used II8 and IQ40 - if you have a suitable laptop and no money then your consideration is $7000 vs. the inconvenience of tethering.
    Need to read his question . The first line says


    I'd like to upgrade from the ZD back because I'd like something that operates faster and allows proper review of exposure and sharpness.


    That's a IQ or the new Credo. He is also a landscape shooter
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Need to read his question . The first line says


    I'd like to upgrade from the ZD back because I'd like something that operates faster and allows proper review of exposure and sharpness.


    That's a IQ or the new Credo. He is also a landscape shooter

    That is quite right, I forgot about that.

    On the other hand, he is coming from ZD, and all the backs he asked about are under $8k.
    $8k to $16k is a big jump.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    IF you shoot in the field at all, the newer LCD screens are a must-have -- and here, the IQ takes the prize for sure, at least for right now -- insert hearty plug for Guy's like-new IQ140! . If you mainly shoot tethered in the studio, then any of the previous or other current generation backs are excellent.
    Jack
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    LOL I know all about that one 22k from a P40 to IQ 160. Luckily some of this is going down.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    IF you shoot in the field at all, the newer LCD screens are a must-have --
    I wonder how we managed shooting film? Or even the older backs?

    Folks seem to think doubling a budget is the easiest thing in the world. The backs the OP are looking at suggests he does not have the funds to spring for the latest and greatest. He wants to get a better back than a ZD and he does not have children or a kidney to sell in order to achieve this. I sometimes think folks blessed with top-of-the-line equipment are really out of touch when it comes to the realities of some to purchase these things--no, it is not easy for me to stretch a budget by $7000. We have a member trying to move up, can't we give him some realistic and useful advice other than you need to buy the latest and most expensive back because of the bells and whistles?
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    IF you shoot in the field at all, the newer LCD screens are a must-have --
    I don't get this kind of comment. How can they possibly be a "must have" when there are so many great images in the "Fun with MF images" thread all the way back to 2008, when the thread started?

    Better, sure. "Nice to have", undoubtedly.

    But "must have"?

    I think that's doing a bit of an injustice to everyone who seemed (and presumably some who still seem) to be perfectly capable of shooting great images with these backs, regardless of how technology has improved in the latest generations.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    I wonder how we managed shooting film? Or even the older backs?

    Folks seem to think doubling a budget is the easiest thing in the world. The backs the OP are looking at suggests he does not have the funds to spring for the latest and greatest. He wants to get a better back than a ZD and he does not have children or a kidney to sell in order to achieve this. I sometimes think folks blessed with top-of-the-line equipment are really out of touch when it comes to the realities of some to purchase these things--no, it is not easy for me to stretch a budget by $7000. We have a member trying to move up, can't we give him some realistic and useful advice other than you need to buy the latest and most expensive back because of the bells and whistles?
    I qualify more than anyone on this going through 5 upgraded backs. You have any clue how much this process cost to do this. Bottom line at some point your going to have to take a bite of the apple. Advice is do it once get to a level that any jump is small. Btw no ine mentioned price. Funny thing is here all the people making price comments are not back shooters. Welcome to our world. No one said it came cheap .
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Funny thing is here all the people making price comments are not back shooters.
    I shoot with a Phase One back.

  38. #38
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Dear all,

    So many responses. I don't know where to start to reply

    Ok the reason I'm looking at the older backs is that when you come from a ZD it is a natural step forward and probably a big one. Thinking of an Aptus 75 is like a big wow for me . It depends on the perspective from which you look at it.
    I'm ok with the image quality of the ZD, sometimes it's fantastic, sometimes it's weird, but generally ok. What I find difficult is that review of sharpness and exposure is pretty much impossible and I've missed several good shots because the back was locked up storing files. It is so slow I might take a book along next time I go for a shoot.
    From all I read I understand that the image quality of the older Leafs at base ISO is pretty much as good as it gets. I'm happy to read this. This is my main criterion and it's also the main reason why I've opted for MF gear in the first place.
    It was good to get some hints on alternative options, newer backs such as the P40+ and the IQ series. It got me thinking more of the long term. My idea is that the new back, whatever it will be, should do it for the coming 5 years. I don't think that I will print much larger 5 years down the road than I do today. 1m on the long side is the max for me, so I think a 30MP back can nicely fit the bill.
    Of course I'd love the display and interface of the new generations and also understand that it will help at times to get a shot that I otherwise wouldn't. But hey I'm coming from a 2.5k$ back, how far should I jump?

    Greetings, Fabian

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by FabianB View Post
    ...how far should I jump?
    How much money ya got?

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by FabianB View Post
    Dear all,

    So many responses. I don't know where to start to reply

    Ok the reason I'm looking at the older backs is that when you come from a ZD it is a natural step forward and probably a big one. Thinking of an Aptus 75 is like a big wow for me . It depends on the perspective from which you look at it.
    I'm ok with the image quality of the ZD, sometimes it's fantastic, sometimes it's weird, but generally ok. What I find difficult is that review of sharpness and exposure is pretty much impossible and I've missed several good shots because the back was locked up storing files. It is so slow I might take a book along next time I go for a shoot.
    From all I read I understand that the image quality of the older Leafs at base ISO is pretty much as good as it gets. I'm happy to read this. This is my main criterion and it's also the main reason why I've opted for MF gear in the first place.
    It was good to get some hints on alternative options, newer backs such as the P40+ and the IQ series. It got me thinking more of the long term. My idea is that the new back, whatever it will be, should do it for the coming 5 years. I don't think that I will print much larger 5 years down the road than I do today. 1m on the long side is the max for me, so I think a 30MP back can nicely fit the bill.
    Of course I'd love the display and interface of the new generations and also understand that it will help at times to get a shot that I otherwise wouldn't. But hey I'm coming from a 2.5k$ back, how far should I jump?

    Greetings, Fabian
    Guy does have a point that one big jump is cheaper than many small jumps.
    However, it is absolutely not necessary to get an IQ and no need to sell your house.

    I would recommend you get one of these: 75, II7, II8.
    22/54s/75s/II5 I would leave unless you can't afford the better ones.
    22mp is OK, but noisy ISO 100 is not OK.
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  41. #41
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    I would agree that the Aptus backs are just fine for landscape use (excellent actually), their LCDs are accurate for image review in the field and superior by a long shot than the equivalent P+ back displays. I don't get why folks seem to think that the IQ/Credo are the only game in town for decent image review without tethering. Faster? No doubt. However, both the previous generation and certainly the current Aptus II generation backs have very good LCD displays and a UI that you can drive either with a stylus or your fingernail.

    I agree with Shlomi's take on things. If you are looking for a cost effective upgrade then I'd definitely look at the Leaf options - just so long as high ISO or long exposure aren't the most important factors.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

  42. #42
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    These are the keys. Buy a system and buy long term. You can take this in baby steps which cost more long term and help short term. Or take the bite and get it over with. I wish I was able to take the bite out of the gate when I went away from the ZD. It cost me way more money this way going inch by inch. Having done this it's my best advice each baby jump was a minimum of 5k each now I'll let you do the math. I don't want to think about it. That's just my advice as been there done that wish I did it different.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    22mp is OK, but noisy ISO 100 is not OK.
    Don't know about that, I quite like the noise my Aptus 22 generates at iso 100...

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by gerald.d View Post
    I don't get this kind of comment. How can they possibly be a "must have" when there are so many great images in the "Fun with MF images" thread all the way back to 2008, when the thread started?

    Better, sure. "Nice to have", undoubtedly.

    But "must have"?

    I think that's doing a bit of an injustice to everyone who seemed (and presumably some who still seem) to be perfectly capable of shooting great images with these backs, regardless of how technology has improved in the latest generations.
    Sorry, I assumed everyone would understand my meaning better. Let me rephrase ---

    Use an IQ back in the field one time, and after doing so many will find it extremely difficult to settle for anything else without such a robust and elegant UI.
    Jack
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    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    or you could try a Nikon D800E

    or a pentax 645d
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    Sorry, I assumed everyone would understand my meaning better. Let me rephrase ---

    Use an IQ back in the field one time, and after doing so many will find it extremely difficult to settle for anything else without such a robust and elegant UI.
    I shoot with a ZD back as well. I have never used any other digital backs, but at least this way I don't know what I'm missing...

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Having used the rotating sensor of the Leaf, it would be hard to give that up. Too bad one can't have both the new IQ/Creo interfaces as well as the rotating sensor.

  48. #48
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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Hello Jono,

    I never got warm about Nikon cameras. I guess that's just me. Spec wise the D800 is a killer. However none of the pictures I've seen on the Nikon pages and the forums got me excited. Colors look dull and 'too thick'. And the 100% crops of the D800E lack the clarity and the acuity the Mamiya ZD back delivers. So why change...
    This is my subjective view and perhaps many disagree.

    Greetings, Fabian



    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    or you could try a Nikon D800E

    or a pentax 645d

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Quote Originally Posted by FabianB View Post
    Hello Jono,

    I never got warm about Nikon cameras. I guess that's just me. Spec wise the D800 is a killer. However none of the pictures I've seen on the Nikon pages and the forums got me excited. Colors look dull and 'too thick'. And the 100% crops of the D800E lack the clarity and the acuity the Mamiya ZD back delivers. So why change...
    This is my subjective view and perhaps many disagree.

    Greetings, Fabian
    Hi Fabian
    Well, I was trying to be a little wicked really. But I quite agree, I can't get on with Nikon cameras - nasty yellows and big, compromised lenses . . . but I guess that's just my prejudice. The Pentax might be interesting though?

    The photographic world seems to me to be changing faster by the month, and shelling out lots of money on MF right now seems rash, to say the least.

    I just see 10s of thousands of dollars going on digital MF camera systems here, and although I fully except that they are, without question, the dog's bollocks . . and if you REALLY need what they have to offer . . . . I once took out my credit card to pay for a ZD, but never quite got there. These days, 30" prints from my M9 are fine, the camera is 'affordable', and the lenses are almost an investment

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Would like to upgrade, which MDB?

    Wait till Photokina. You will have more options and current backs will go lower in price.

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