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Thread: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

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    P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    Thinking about upgrading my P30+ to a P45+ and would like to hear what users of (ideally) both backs have to say about the differences between them, mostly concerning image quality, but any other characteristics also, please...
    Thank you for any helpful info.
    Martin

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    A few thoughts on the P45+,

    1. IMO the only CCD back that can really get a 1 hour exposure that is worth anything, i.e. a normal full resolution print. I worked with the P45+ for 3 years and used the long exposure mode quite a bit. This is a iso 50 only. The files will be much cleaner than a IQ260, or 360, and most likely the 380. I have yet to see any comparisons between the 260 and 380, but own the 260 (not a smart upgrade for me) and it can barely go 15 minutes before noise becomes overpowering.

    2. The P45+ needs 69 degree outdoor temps for the full 1 hour, any hotter and you will really start to pick up some noise. This is true also of the 260.

    3. Early versions of the P45+, (mine was one) would not go to past around 25 minutes. Phase One needed to change out some parts on the back to allow this. You also need to be at the latest firmware to get the full 1 hour exposure. If you buying a used back, make sure the dealer or third party certifies it can reach 1 hour exposures clean.

    4. The P45+ has no micro lenses, or if they are on the chip, they are not as big an issue as they are on the Dalsa chips. Thus the P45+ can take full movements from the Schneider 35XL and possibly the 28XL, full movements up to around 15mm of shift with no color cast. There will still be light fall off, but that's just part of of shifting. Net the P45+ is a great back for a tech camera in this regard.

    5. The P45+ is only going to tether in firewire, so in the field, with a tech camera you will need to a full laptop to tether. The LCD on the P45+ is the same as the P30 so checking focus is a bit hard, at least for me it was.

    6. The iso range on the P45+ is 50 to 800, the real range is around 50 to 200. In good light 400 can be quite good, but 800 will always be a real push for a full sized shot.

    7. The P45+ is close to full frame 1:1 so a very small 10% crop sensor

    8. The P45+ will not work with the new XF camera, now or in the future, per Phase One. So this will limit you if you are using a Mamiya mount back to a DF, AFDIII or DF+. With the XF shipping it's safe to assume there will be a lot of DF+ bodies on the market at a very good price point.

    9. With Capture 1 Vr 8, you can get some excellent results from the P45+. I have been very pleased with some of my work that was taken from 2008 to 2011, all with P45+. The color was always great, but the shadow recovery has really really gotten very good with C1 Vr 8.

    10. In summary, P45+ solid back, great chip, very durable construction. I feel it will give you more latitude in your photography than a P30+, especially if you are interested in the tech camera route.

    Paul Caldwell
    Paul Caldwell
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    www.photosofarkansas.com
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    Senior Member Dogs857's Avatar
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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    I am going to back up a lot of what Paul said about the P45+.

    I had mine up for sale to chase a full frame sensor but in the end decided to keep it.
    Excellent output, great colour and long exposure at ISO 50 is virtually noise free when done right.
    I have no idea about high ISO as I have just shot at 50 the whole time.
    I shift mine regularly to 20mm on a Cambo with my 43XL and 70HR with no issues. LCC cleans up excellently.
    The only bug I have is the screen. You can use it to evaluate focus but it is not really that effective or user friendly. I use a ground glass to frame shots up and have started looking into carrying a macbook air for tethered field work. However coming from a P30+ you would know all about it anyway. It's no worse than what you already have.

    If you would like a RAW file to evaluate and play with just let me know.
    Stop chasing gear, start chasing photos instead.

    Jeff, but my friends call me Dogs

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    Having had both MFDBs, the most notable differences in my mind are increased resolution, 1.1 vs. 1.3 crop, microlenses on P30 (good for speed/light; bad for tech cam), and longer exposure capabilities on P45+.

    That being said, the P30 MFDB remains one of my favorite backs---it was just so easy and simple to use. Images were great right out of the box. P45+ is pretty darn easy as well. If you don't need the long exposure capability, I'd reach for the P65+ and go full frame. Of course, then the IQ series is just....

    (if you give a mouse a cookie...)

    ken

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    Thank you so far, blokes...I should have given you more to begin with...my platform is Contax, main points of focus are trees, flowers, close detail, landscapes and people (family and portrait), >80% tripod, mu, timer/cable. I like to see / show the texture in things so have been looking for comparative info on if the P45 can make noticeably cleaner, crisper more detailed images than the P30. Though I'l never say never, I don't envisage getting a tech cam (but you didn't know that), and yes, guilty to your tempt of trying to justify the stretch to a P65. From a dealer, the 45 is about 6-7k ozidollas more (about double) what I'd get for my 30 by private sale, no trade offer provided, and the 65 another 4k more than that.
    Martin

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    Senior Member Dogs857's Avatar
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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    Fair enough mate.

    I obviously don't have any contax glass but I can still give you a RAW file to play with if you like.
    I am pretty sure Guy Mancuso did a comparison between these backs at some point, but I think the attached photos have been removed.
    Stop chasing gear, start chasing photos instead.

    Jeff, but my friends call me Dogs

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    Thanks Dogs, a RAW would be a good idea to play with to compare...quite the novice still with C1 due to a lack of much available time but I have just about the latest version...do you need my email address? If so I'll pm you.
    Martin

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogs857 View Post
    The only bug I have is the screen. You can use it to evaluate focus but it is not really that effective or user friendly.
    Had to chuckle, you think that screen is bad try a non plus like my P20. I have a P20 and P45+ even the opening screen is night and day different.
    I know not from a P30+ but my transition to the P45+ has shown, I find and as usual YMMV, the P45+ is far more sensitive to white balance for colour response. I was not cavalier before but now find it critical and shooting more grey/Q/checker cards in shot than ever. I do appreciate the almost no crop of the P45+ just enough around the edge to aid composition without feeling compromised. I did look at P30+ long and hard because of the stop gain, I shoot a lot handheld, but I've had enough of crop backs thanks.
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    Senior Member ondebanks's Avatar
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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    I haven't owned either of them, but I'll venture some info that may be useful.

    First of all, the sensor tech is the same - same generation, same 6.8 micron pixel size. Resolution will be identical, for a given lens. The P45+ gives you more such pixels and so reduces the crop factor, while the P30+ puts microlenses on the pixels and so doubles their sensitivity. Those are the essential differences between them.

    About long exposures. Everyone sings the praises of the P45+. But like I said, sensor tech is identical; Kodak's datasheets indicate that the dark noise in long exposures will be the same for both chips. So we should hear from someone who used a P30+ (or preferably both) for long exposures as well - I would expect they can confirm that they behave similarly.

    Ray

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    I've been consolidating my thoughts from all your comments over the last some days, particularly your succinct and concise summary Ray. I am now wondering about the P40+ as a not too costly alternative and whether its newer tech will raise the IQ bar (guessing that for landscape the extra reso may be useful). I don't really need the long exposure time the P45+ is capable of...
    Last edited by arionelli; 9th August 2015 at 02:03.

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    If you like CCD then the P45+ is excellent for landscape. Sold mine in order to upgrade to the 645Z and have never looked back after seeing the Z's results.

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    Re: P45+ or hang on to my P30+

    My first Phase One back was a P30+ (first back was a Kodak). As great a back as the P30 is it nevertheless would play well with a technical camera which was the route I was taking. The P45+ replaced the P30+ and I was very happy with it on both my Cambo WRS and the Mamiya I was shooting at the time. I had no problems whatsoever with the P45+ and highly recommend it. Very nice upgrade path.

    Okay I wrote the above and thought about where I went after the P45 which was the P65+. I'd suggest you look at the P65+ as it was the first "true full frame" back and offers more in resolution and is based on a different sensor. You get more resolution, full frame yet loose the longer exposure time that a P45 offers. Just thought I'd throw that into the mix,

    Good luck on your decision

    Don

    Just reread post #5 - disregard the P65....
    Don Libby
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