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Thread: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

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    Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    I'm confused why there isn't more raging love for the FPS!

    To me its really quite a breakthrough camera, allowing Tech camera work or straight shooting capabilities, and full access to those wonderful lenses, but with a quiet & fast modern Focal Plane Shutter. Auto bracketing, 1/2, 1/3 or 1/4 stop control, HDR, time lapse, multi exposure, etc, etc.

    I've been using mine as a walk-around camera, and am knocked out by the difference from using a TC or STC. You don't need to take your eye away from the finder to set the shutter each time, which is HUGE, plus the shutter is very quiet and reliable. I seem to even get sharper images as the button is an electro-magnetic coupling, not a physical plunger, and -not seen anyone mention this- is pushed in the direction of the optical axis, not perpendicular to it, so any movement is not blur inducing.

    Its a quirky looking body, due to Alpa's desire to allow you to stitch with it as a shutter unit on a Max/STC etc. But once you get used to that, its really a great camera to use. It is also much smaller and lighter than you might think from online images. I haven't begun to explore its ability to put a huge range of other lenses on there - Nikon, Canon, Hasselblad, Olympus, Leica, etc.

    Of course there are a few things Alpa should maybe tweak - the choice not to take power from the back, requiring its own batteries and charger. They also prioritized stitching compatibility over straight shooting in this form-factor, something I hope will change with a future model. It also has led to some lens barrel confusion as the new body thickness (due to shutter unit) is a change from the rest of the system, meaning SB lenses only.

    I really love mine, and its becoming my default option. I'd honestly suggest anyone into Alpa here try one out. It's an amazing tool.
    Last edited by narikin; 11th June 2013 at 18:56.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by narikin View Post
    I'm confused why there isn't more raging love for the FPS!
    Cost??

    I love my Arca and have no intention of switching to an Alpa tech camera but the FPS does seem like a great fun camera but the cost is just way too high for a toy..... heck, even the grip is extra!

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by gazwas View Post
    Cost??

    I love my Arca and have no intention of switching to an Alpa tech camera but the FPS does seem like a great fun camera but the cost is just way too high for a toy..... heck, even the grip is extra!
    Well I thought it was clear that I was talking about the large number of Alpa owners there are here, not to other system users so much. But I guess not.

    Certainly if Arca brought out a ground breaking new camera, I'd also not be paying much attention to it either, with my level of Alpa investment.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by narikin View Post
    I'm confused why there isn't more raging love for the FPS!
    It's a safe bet that anyone that has one will agree. For me the combo of FPS, tilt adapter, IQ180, and new HR 90mm Alpagon can't be beat. Great human interface and a joy to use. And the sounds it emits are somehow extremely satisfying

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    Senior Member danlindberg's Avatar
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    The concept is brilliant. Flexibility is an understatement. Quality 'feel' is genuine Alpa. Shutter sound sexiest ever.....this list can go on and on and on....

    Right now I'm moving base, back to south of Spain and all assignments are on hold due to a tremendous amount of work of doing this. But, once I'm in place, I will breathe, eat and sleep photography again and the FPS will be my tool of choice.
    For instance I will be looking at offering elevated photography with a 10 metre mast. Using remote triggering with the FPS, the Credo and a super wide lens!
    Alpa FPS • MAX • TC | Alpagon 32Hr | Helvetar 75 | Schneider 120N | Leaf Aptus II 5 • Leaf Credo 60 | www.danlindberg.com

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by narikin View Post
    Well I thought it was clear that I was talking about the large number of Alpa owners there are here, not to other system users so much. But I guess not.
    What a strange reply??

    I didn't realise it was an exclusive club and not owning an Alpa excluded other forum members from your topic.

    Maybe that's the problem with the FPS as Alpa are too being a little short sighted about only considering existing owners rather than a larger user base. I'd love to own one but at its current cost including essential extras is a step too far.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by gazwas View Post
    What a strange reply??

    I didn't realise it was an exclusive club and not owning an Alpa excluded other forum members from your topic.
    what a strange response from you!
    Read the OP last line where it clearly says:

    Quote Originally Posted by narikin View Post
    I'd honestly suggest anyone into Alpa here try one out. It's an amazing tool.
    Nobody is saying that any post is exclusive, it's simply obvious that the topic is primarily aimed at people into the Alpa system. Says so right there in the closing line. Duh.

    If I was posting about a ground breaking new Canon high-end body, to have a Nikon system owner chime in with first reply and say "I love my Nikon and have no intention of switching to Canon" is not really an amazingly useful response, imho. Peace out.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by narikin View Post
    it's simply obvious that the topic is primarily aimed at people into the Alpa system.
    ?? ?? Is is?

    I think you are totally missing the point by a wide margin on the FPS.....

    Sure its great for existing Alpa owners but the most magical thing and the attraction for many users (myself includes) is you don't "obviously" as you patronisingly put it, have to be an Alpa owner to use one. Using plain old Schnieder and Rodenstock digital lenses is what every other tech camera is for and the ability to use Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad, Leica, Olympus, Zeiss and Mamiya's current and legacy lenses is what make the camera so unique and interesting.

    You want opinions on why its not so popular and I give you my reason. The fact that you don't like my opinion and disregard it as I'm an Arca (Mamiya, Canon, Olympus, Zeiss) owner is just surprising considering the design philosophy behind the FPS.

    I'll move on..........
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Peace and love, folks, peace and love

    I've never heard before on getdpi that comments from users of other camera brands aren't welcome, and I hardly ever see negative comments about Canon cameras from Nikon users. This isn't dpr after all. I also agree with Gareth that the high price of the FPS and accessories is probably one of the main reasons why it isn't more popular. I have been fascinated by that camera since it was released, but it's way, way out of my reach, and will probably be so for some time or forever. I do read the reviews and watch the videos made about it now and then though. Just in case I should stumble across an unusually large pile of money one day

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Great way to derail a thread. Congratulations!

    The OP says if you actually read it:

    "I'd honestly suggest anyone into Alpa here try one out"

    And so we get posters saying "cost" and that they "love their Arca and have no intention of switching" (since when were Arca's cheap?) Then when the OP clarifies (or, in fact, repeats) that s/he was really aiming at existing Alpa users, it degenerates into how posters have "never heard [...] that comments from users of other camera brands aren't welcome" which is not what was said.

    This is not rocket science: A new body in the Alpa system might be most useful to people with -you guessed it- an Alpa system! and Yes - MF digital is expensive! That cannot be news here, can it?

    Lets all try to keep it on topic and focused, otherwise it does indeed become like dPreview.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    I have an FPS as my first foray into tech cameras, with Nikon adapter for my 24 and 85 mm PCE lenses. Image quality on IQ180 is really good at this early and very experimental stage. The 85 covers the full sensor area, with a little movement. The 24 has corner cutoff, but still a decent coverage. Working well for me so far using hyperfocal focussing. When firmware is available for the 800 PCE, despite the limited image circle there should be some fun time (latter more than former!) trying to focus it!
    Unfortunately, Phase/Mamiya FPS mount is not yet available for my P1/SK lenses (45, 80, 240), and the available manual adapter does not permit aperture control (it would if I had older lenses). The FPS and the lens and back adapters are exquisitely made, the shutter is very very smooth, not a hint of vibration. I plan on some handholding tests, I expect to find that it will work very well with the 24 and 85 lenses.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    I really do wish that Alpa would have designed this to be more compatible with more of the Rodenstock/Schneider lenses. I would limited to my SB 100 and 150...... wouldn't even be able to use my beloved 60mm SB. The whole reason I own Alpa or would own any Tech camera is for the lenses. If I could use my 60mm, or better yet if I could tilt my 60 this would be a slam dunk!

    Victor

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by vjbelle View Post
    I really do wish that Alpa would have designed this to be more compatible with more of the Rodenstock/Schneider lenses. I would limited to my SB 100 and 150...... wouldn't even be able to use my beloved 60mm SB. The whole reason I own Alpa or would own any Tech camera is for the lenses. If I could use my 60mm, or better yet if I could tilt my 60 this would be a slam dunk!

    Victor
    Which 60SB is this Victor? I thought all SB (except 23mm) lenses could be used on the FPS, with the usual 17mm spacer plate. Could be wrong, but I certainly would have assumed a length like 60mm is perfectly ok, I know 40 and 50mm etc are. (unless you mean 60mm in LB? No LB lenses can be used on FPS)

    Sadly the shutter unit is thicker than no shutter unit (!) and so the FPS needs to be 17mm deep it seems. Alpa are handling it with as much care as they can, releasing as many lenses as possible in SB and even dedicated 17mm mounts, but personally I think all FPS owners should be allowed a change of a couple of lenses from LB to SB for an advantageous price to ease the cost/pain of switching.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    My 60mm SB is Schneider.... Killer lens!! It really doesn't matter which lens but rather the thickness of the SB and the thickness of the FSB. To reach infinity there has to be defined distance to the sensor plane. As I see it I can't use my 60mm SB lens under any circumstances with the FPS..... very regretable!

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Hey, for the price of an ALPA FPS and a tech cam body (for movements) I could buy two Hassy Lunars!


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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    What a joy to build up the system capabilities.
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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Contax adapter?
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by MistralAtom View Post
    What a joy to build up the system capabilities.
    Congrats on the new adapter. Looks great.

    What is the hood on the lens ?

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Glad you asked...
    Heliopan 72mm-86mm step up ring;
    Heliopan 86mm-105 mm step up ring
    B+W 105mm Screw in Wide angle metal lens hood # 970.

    If I use only the 72-86 step up, then I can use my Rodenstock 86mm MC slim circular polarizer.
    for my 140mm Contax (also with 72mm front ring) I use a Nikon HN-20 metal hood.

    I had been using the same Nikon hood on 45mm with P30+ back, with hardly any vignetting, but with the larger sensor of IQ260, I needed a shorter, wider hood. I may have overdone it with this configuration. i.e. I might have gotten away with something a little less extreme diameter and possibly better practical, such as the 86mm B+W metal lens hood, but this is how I ended up for now.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    Contax adapter?
    Yes. On loan from Alpa. This is one of a small number of prototypes they have constructed. This is an example of that set up's results.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by MistralAtom View Post
    Glad you asked...
    Heliopan 72mm-86mm step up ring;
    Heliopan 86mm-105 mm step up ring
    B+W 105mm Screw in Wide angle metal lens hood # 970.

    If I use only the 72-86 step up, then I can use my Rodenstock 86mm MC slim circular polarizer.
    for my 140mm Contax (also with 72mm front ring) I use a Nikon HN-20 metal hood.

    I had been using the same Nikon hood on 45mm with P30+ back, with hardly any vignetting, but with the larger sensor of IQ260, I needed a shorter, wider hood. I may have overdone it with this configuration. i.e. I might have gotten away with something a little less extreme diameter and possibly better practical, such as the 86mm B+W metal lens hood, but this is how I ended up for now.
    Thank you for the great explanation. Very good information re HN-20.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    In preparation for a trip on an icebreaker to sub Antarctic islands, some reconfiguration. Voigtlander light meter, 32mm Alpagon with center filter.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by MistralAtom View Post
    In preparation for a trip on an icebreaker to sub Antarctic islands, some reconfiguration. Voigtlander light meter, 32mm Alpagon with center filter.
    Might I inquire what that hand strap is? Almost nothing I have fits into the tiny lug at the top right corner!

    Looks like a point-and-shoot strap repurposed?

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Narikin,

    Have you looked at Upstrap? I used their Rapid Release and Cord loops on my STC which should have the same size lug as the FPS.

    Victor

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by narikin View Post
    Might I inquire what that hand strap is? Almost nothing I have fits into the tiny lug at the top right corner!

    Looks like a point-and-shoot strap repurposed?
    I use an Optech strap on my STC. They have various options for the "end loop" on their straps, one of which will no doubt fit the FPS. http://optechusa.com/straps/super-classic-strap.html

    Interestingly one of the strap options offered by Alpa is from these guys. I have that strap but from Optech not Alpa.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    To me the Alpa system is meant to be in a little bag with wide lens (I use schneider 47mm and 24mmXL) with a digital back or a 6X9 film back : great portabiliy with maximum quality.
    That is why I have never been attracted by the FPS, it is not for my use because of the size, the form factor, and the weight and the price. When I want to put legacy lenses, I have a Sony A7 with adapters for that.
    But my joy is to walk about with my little bag, and a one lens combo with the TC or SWA.

    Being curious let me understand the attraction for the FPS, but it is not for me. Enjoy and shoot !

    Stéphane.
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Hello, the strap you see is indeed repurposed from a small Sony video camera. The other side of the FPS has more generously sized attachment point, so in my instance, I have a braided cord that I loop over the panning plate knob. I tucked it out of the way for the photo shown.

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by steflaurent974 View Post
    To me the Alpa system is meant to be in a little bag with wide lens (I use schneider 47mm and 24mmXL) with a digital back or a 6X9 film back : great portabiliy with maximum quality.
    That is why I have never been attracted by the FPS, it is not for my use because of the size, the form factor, and the weight and the price. When I want to put legacy lenses, I have a Sony A7 with adapters for that.
    But my joy is to walk about with my little bag, and a one lens combo with the TC or SWA.

    Being curious let me understand the attraction for the FPS, but it is not for me. Enjoy and shoot !

    Stéphane.

    Stéphane,

    You make a very valid point about the Alpa 12 series.

    However, the FPS I feel is a great option for future proofing to a certain degree your MF digital back and legacy lenses, plus also as a very versatile platform for using things like the Canon TSE lenses (my own preference actually - I bought mine to use with my TC and other Alpa lenses but in the end I've only ever used it with Canon tilts). If you can get past the need to crop with lots of legacy glass, it does offer some very interesting options for image capture beyond just the maximum resolution and "quality" that I think that we focus on with most technical cameras.

    Recently I have found myself using my MFDB on three systems, primarily my Cambo Actus DB+, then for smaller more portable and packable format technical excellence it's on the STC, but the FPS for me has been the option for the extraordinarily wide 17 & 24 TSE lenses that I can't match for format with either of the other cameras. I also bought it with a view to using other lenses that maybe only cover a portion of the sensor and so have a V mount for things like Petzval or other 'flawed' lenses that have a unique look to them.

    For me the lack of available movements on the FPS with my wide Rodenstock lenses is the deal killer for it being the only camera.

    I also use my Sonys for use with other glass and in fact even the same TSE lenses. For me though the 3:2 image format is a real distraction (since as I've mentioned many times I just loathe it most of the time).

    It is a great time though to shoot because we have so many great potential options with these systems.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    For me the lack of available movements on the FPS with my wide Rodenstock lenses is the deal killer for it being the only camera.
    Agreed. An odd thing is that Alpa make FPS shifting adapters for Contax and Hasselblad lenses, with both cross and rise/fall movements, but not for their own mounted Rodenstock/SK lenses! So you can shift/stitch on an FPS with a Contax 35mm lens, but not with your Alpa mounted 'Alpagon'/Rodenstock 35mm. Very strange!

    Hopefully they'll see the problem themselves and plug that hole in the system.

    (Yes I know you can put the FPS into an STC/Max and shift that way, but that's a heavy and cumbersome combo)
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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

    I am aware of this discussion, http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...-645-lens.html , but if one can mention in more detail his estimation about using Contax 645 lenses on a technical camera with movements and 37x49mm size backs (no need for stitching)?

    I am particularly interested on the 45-90 Vario Sonnar and the 35, 45, 55, 80 & 120Apo lenses, if one could comment on which lenses might need some cropping and his estimation on the magnitude of the cropping needed for smaller than f8 aperture, I would be grateful...

    Thanks....

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    Re: Praise for the amazing Alpa FPS?!

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    Macquarie Island Southern Ocean Alpa FPS as shown in earlier post with 70mm Alpagon with CP.
    Elephant seals, Royal and King penguins
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