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Thread: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

  1. #101
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    I have shot with medium format equipment, albeit film, not digital, so the "feel" of the "real camera" is familiar to me. There is no Zen like feeling in it for me. Cameras are tools, nothing more.

    As far as interfaces and the simplicity are concerned, any camera is as simple as you want to make it. You can take any camera with manual exposure capability and use it as such. You can turn off autofocusing on any camera, you can turn off TTL flash, you can turn off the meter and use a hand hand incident meter. In other words, you can take ANY camera and break it down to its bare bones and use not just like a manual camera, but like a view camera.

    Initially, I thought that the most compelling reason for getting MF was the ability to use tech cameras. However, given that there are offerings out there that accommodate not just mirrorless, but SLR bodies, even that point becomes moot (as are the lenses, since the same lenses are used on tech cameras regardless of the bodies)

    Additionally, since the new generation of backs has embraced the Sony CMOS sensor, it seems to me that the ONLY truly compelling reason to get the MF equipment is resolution. If one needs resolution north of 50mp, then MF is the way to go, no question about it. The resolution difference is real, EASILY seen, and objective.

    The rest... meh. At least, that's my own take on it. People buy all sorts of stuff for all sorts of reasons. That's not an indication of anything, other than marketing, perhaps.

    I don't mean to beat up on people who like MF. Some of them really need it, I think most of them don't, but they're the ones spending their own money, so who am I to judge? In the end, having seen a number of RAW files and done a number of comparisons, *I* don't think the image quality difference justifies the price. Since I thought that having a digital back was the only way to use a tech camera, I entertained the idea, but since that's not the case either, I can't see a COMPELLING reason for ME to jump on the bandwagon.

    Having said all that, I'm glad the MF equipment is out there. I definitely like these forums and the folks here tend to be more civilized and generally, better photographers.
    Forgive me, but I have an issue with this post.

    There have been many people who have spent good time to try and describe how and why the use of MF gear matters to them. They have by and large been courteous enough to say if that doesn't matter to you, then it's probably not for you. And in general the discussion has accommodated different points of view.

    You have said before that the tools don't matter, the "zen" is not a factor doesn't matter, and that the argument about slowing down doesn't work for you. Fair enough. No problem. I might disagree, even profoundly so, but to each their own. It's your experience.

    But the statement in the above post that probably most users don't really need MF gear is a different matter. In saying that, you are projecting your view (that it doesn't really matter to the photog) on how the rest of us work and use our tools. I don't think that's right or in the spirit of this discussion.

    Please reconsider.
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  2. #102
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Forgive me, but I have an issue with this post.

    But the statement in the above post that probably most users don't really need MF gear is a different matter. In saying that, you are projecting your view (that it doesn't really matter to the photog) on how the rest of us work and use our tools. I don't think that's right or in the spirit of this discussion.

    Please reconsider.
    That's my take on it. That's not to say that they don't enjoy it, but when I say "need it", I mean whether they could have accomplished the same goals with different equipment. I don't mean "similar goals", I mean really the same goals. As an example of what I consider "need", let's say you're doing architectural photography, I would say that you really NEED some sort of shifting capabilities. If you're doing a portrait (a regular portrait, nothing specialized), then you really don't NEED shifting or tilting capabilities. It's ok if you have them, but you really don't NEED them.

    So, to clarify my statement, NEED is something you can't do without, not something that's nice to have.

  3. #103
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    It's all Reductio Ad Absurdum

    Is there a compelling reason to drive a Ferrari?? I can carry far more shopping and kids in my Jeep, and am only allowed to drive at 50kph in town.
    Is there a compelling reason to drive a Jeep?? Most of the major roads are sealed and there is no practical reason to own a 4WD any more.
    Is there a compelling reason to listen to a high end stereo?? My $20 CD player plays music.
    Is there a compelling reason to have a big TV?? I can watch movies on my computer screen.
    Is there a compelling reason to own a dishwasher?? I have a sink, the ability to boil water, soap and two hands.
    Is there a compelling reason to own MF cameras?? My iPhone takes pretty good shots.

    If you want to start an argument and then deny any response that people give you then you are really not that interested in my opinion. It's quite obvious that MF is not for you, no worries at all. The question you have to ask yourself is that if money was no matter what would you do.

    I would not drive a Ferrari because I am not a big fan of sports cars. That doesn't make people who drive sports cars wrong.
    I would still own a Jeep because I derive pleasure from going bush on hard 4WD trails.
    I would buy a good stereo because I love listening to music. I can't personally hear the differences that audiophiles can but it is not my passion.
    I would have a big TV because it is a more immersive experience and I enjoy watching movies.
    I would have a dishwasher because it saves me time and I personally hate washing up.
    I would shoot MF because it gives me pleasure and I can see the differences. This is my passion so I pay far more attention to it.

    Does it affect me in the slightest what anyone else shoots with?? No not at all. This is a very personal industry and everyone has different requirements. Someone shooting high end fashion will have different requirements from someone shooting landscapes. The trick is to figure out what you want early, because it is an expensive business, and this is regardless of what format you shoot with.

    By the sounds of it there is no compelling reason for you to move to MF. Congratulations on working this out, now you can move on and embrace whatever else you chose to shoot with. That doesn't make anyone else's choices wrong. We only get one play on the wheel of life, why not do whatever makes you happy??

    Do I need MF....... no not at all.

    Do I want to use MF........ absolutely.

    And that is the most compelling reason of all.
    Last edited by Dogs857; 16th March 2016 at 17:06.
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  4. #104
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogs857 View Post

    Do I need MF....... no not at all.

    Do I want to use MF........ absolutely.

    And that is the most compelling reason of all.
    That's it, in a nutshell.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    That's it, in a nutshell.

    I have been reading this and interested in the circular logic being repeated and repeated. As said before MF is obviously not for you, but to parse words and miss the thought perhaps is why MF is not for you.


    Stop trying to demean and bring down others' preferences to a level you need to rationalize your choice. The question this begs , is to whom are you trying to rationalize your choice.

    If you do not see value of a larger capture plane, or any of the other inherent values of MF, lucky you. enjoy what you have and shoot more. With your money saved, feel the warmth.
    Last edited by alajuela; 16th March 2016 at 18:03.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    That's it, in a nutshell.
    Certainly for your work, there is nothing compelling there to warrant MF. Keep shaking that 20D and keep your money in the bank.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by alajuela View Post
    I have been reading this and interested in the circular logic being repeated and repeated. As said before MF is obviously not for you, but to parse words and miss the thought perhaps is why MF is not for you.


    Stop trying to demean and and bring down others' preferences to a level you need to rationalize your choice. The question this begs , is to whom are you trying to rationalize your choice.

    If you do not see value of a larger capture plane, or any of the other inherent values of MF, lucky you. enjoy what you have and shoot more. With your money saved, feel the warmth.
    I didn't realize that I was trying to demean and bring down others' preferences or to rationalize or justify my own choice. I was ready to end this discussion for quite some time, but people chime in and I thought I would respond. It is difficult to communicate tone on the forums, so each and every reader projects his own.

    I went out of my way to explain my rationale and to say time and time and time again that these are my criteria and these are the things that are important to me. Anything can be misinterpreted whether willingly or unwillingly, but I thought I made it clear that I'm not trying to fire across the bow.
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  8. #108
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    Put your Nikon on a a tech camera with the same Rodie or Schneider glass and then tell me if there is a difference.
    Hmmm... at minimum there will be an obvious difference to the tune of ~1.5X
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    That's my take on it. That's not to say that they don't enjoy it, but when I say "need it", I mean whether they could have accomplished the same goals with different equipment. I don't mean "similar goals", I mean really the same goals. As an example of what I consider "need", let's say you're doing architectural photography, I would say that you really NEED some sort of shifting capabilities. If you're doing a portrait (a regular portrait, nothing specialized), then you really don't NEED shifting or tilting capabilities. It's ok if you have them, but you really don't NEED them.

    So, to clarify my statement, NEED is something you can't do without, not something that's nice to have.
    goodness - why are you even here?

    The photos you posted you made could be comfortably accomplished with any 35 based digital slr made in the last 10 years, aps-c or full frame. Heck, damn near any compact could do it. The resolution requirements are so low it's incredible. You are saying that most of us don't need med format - take some of your own advice. You don't need full frame 35 yet alone medium format.

    Personally I believe you should forget about changing camera gear and learn post processing. You say you don't know photoshop - so change that. Put some effort into learning lightroom/C1/Photoshop. You'll get far bigger improvements there. Post processing is critical to the end result.
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    Senior Member Dogs857's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    I didn't realize that I was trying to demean and bring down others' preferences or to rationalize or justify my own choice. I was ready to end this discussion for quite some time, but people chime in and I thought I would respond. It is difficult to communicate tone on the forums, so each and every reader projects his own.

    I went out of my way to explain my rationale and to say time and time and time again that these are my criteria and these are the things that are important to me. Anything can be misinterpreted whether willingly or unwillingly, but I thought I made it clear that I'm not trying to fire across the bow.
    It's all good buddy.

    The thing about forums is people will come in late and put in their 0.02c worth (myself included). With subjects like this people can also get quite emotionally invested in their opinions as well. If you want to see some real fun try starting the "CCD v CMOS" debate again

    You are the master of your own ship and it is good to see that you have a clear idea of what you want and what you need. Good luck with whatever you end up with and enjoy the hell out of your photography.
    Stop chasing gear, start chasing photos instead.

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  11. #111
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogs857 View Post
    It's all good buddy.

    The thing about forums is people will come in late and put in their 0.02c worth (myself included). With subjects like this people can also get quite emotionally invested in their opinions as well. If you want to see some real fun try starting the "CCD v CMOS" debate again

    You are the master of your own ship and it is good to see that you have a clear idea of what you want and what you need. Good luck with whatever you end up with and enjoy the hell out of your shooting.
    Thanks, I appreciate that. Furthermore, this particular forum and this particular thread helped crystalize things for me and I'm grateful to all those who have taken the time and made the effort to respond.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    Thanks, I appreciate that. Furthermore, this particular forum and this particular thread helped crystalize things for me and I'm grateful to all those who have taken the time and made the effort to respond.
    Fine. Thanks for your time. Over and out.

  13. #113
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Just read this whole thread (was having trouble sleeping) and it reminded me of a famous Oscar Wilde quote:

    “When bankers get together for dinner, they discuss Art. When artists get together for dinner, they discuss Money”

    Personally, I now use both MFD and 35mm and in some cases, my iPhone. I have a successful photography business and am booked out quite solidly.

    My amendment to Wilde's quote would be:

    "When amateur photographers talk about photography, they talk about cameras and lenses. When professional photographers talk about photography, they talk about light and technique"

    Peace

    e
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Putting some obvious subtexts aside, the only generic difference between an "amateur" and a "professional" photographer is that the pro makes or tries to make a business out of it.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    Putting some obvious subtexts aside, the only generic difference between an "amateur" and a "professional" photographer is that the pro makes or tries to make a business out of it.
    Correct, Jim.
    That is why I said it. I have the utmost respect for amateurs and hobbyists in this field, and fine art practitioners and the like. They are the best and have honed better technique than many professionals I know (myself included)
    As far as the age old debate of amateur vs professional. you are correct. But if something is important to you, you hire a professional. (Would you hire an amateur for your wedding? appendix removal? multi-million dollar product launch?...etc)

    I don't believe any subtext intended. Its just that many in the thread stated something about how expensive MFD is compared to smaller format gear and "would you rather have $60K in the bank vs...blah blah blah..." remember? Well, then you are talking about money and business sense, not photography tools. I can tell you that the largest expense in any small business is payroll (i.e.: skilled professional man hours). I can only speak for myself (and a few thousand others I am sure) when I tell you that the most precious commodity in professional photography is TIME.

    In our studio, MFD saves time in post-proc and in some cases in technique time. That amounts to over $2500/week over using the small formats for certain jobs. That adds up fast in a busy studio. It is significant and tangible. The opposite of the initial meme posted is true, I don't have an extra $60K to throw at post prod corrections that DO NOT OCCUR WITH MFD; therefore, MFD is the cheaper option despite the relatively higher upfront costs.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    Putting some obvious subtexts aside, the only generic difference between an "amateur" and a "professional" photographer is that the pro makes or tries to make a business out of it.
    sorry, this is what amateurs love to hear but it is not the reality , here are some points what in my view separates pros from amateurs:


    most pros are :


    able to work under pressure

    can deliver creativity when it is needed

    can organize and work with other creatives

    care more about light and less about cameras

    don´t need expansive gear to fill a creative void
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Egor View Post
    Just read this whole thread (was having trouble sleeping) and it reminded me of a famous Oscar Wilde quote:

    “When bankers get together for dinner, they discuss Art. When artists get together for dinner, they discuss Money”

    Personally, I now use both MFD and 35mm and in some cases, my iPhone. I have a successful photography business and am booked out quite solidly.

    My amendment to Wilde's quote would be:

    "When amateur photographers talk about photography, they talk about cameras and lenses. When professional photographers talk about photography, they talk about light and technique"

    Peace

    e
    At the risk of waking the horde of well wishers who never fail to seize an opportunity to proclaim how much my work sucks, I will agree with you. In the end, the format doesn't matter, the lenses don't matter past a certain point and we spend most of our time splitting hairs. However, given that most gear oriented forums are about splitting hairs, we may as well indulge.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post

    I don't mean to beat up on people who like MF. Some of them really need it, I think most of them don't, but they're the ones spending their own money, so who am I to judge? In the end, having seen a number of RAW files and done a number of comparisons, *I* don't think the image quality difference justifies the price.
    You’re right ... who are you to judge? so why do you persist in doing so?

    This has been hammered to death for so long by so many people it’s getting quite tiresome. While it’s a correct statement that most don’t need it, those on this forum aren’t “most”. Extrapolating that most don’t need it means that most shooting MF don’t need it is a stretch. Your persistence in constantly hammering this point home is becoming a little inconsiderate and trollish. Having a point of view is fine, but quit trying to put everyone into your world. Most who frequent this forum are experienced and advanced shooters, I would bet that almost all who shoot MF on this forum have multiple systems they could use if they choose (I have a full d800 system with Zeiss glass, as well as a full Sony a7rII system). And despite that we still choose to shoot MF most of the time for all of the reasons we have stated as well as others. It doesn’t matter whether or not you agree, and your point has been heard (for the millionth time by you and others). Give it a rest.

    The quoted statement really bears this out ... judging MF vs dSLR by looking at raw files isn’t how I make my decision. I decide by the prints. My “test” print size is 24x30. My actual selling pieces are up to 90” long, and my better images are only available in 40” or larger sizes. I shoot MF because I don’t want to try and do stitches of moving water, or I don’t want to take the time to do stitches because I have to shoot a focus stack or perhaps an HDR(although that’s becoming pretty rare). I want a single capture to hold up to 72” or even more, or a simple 2 shot capture shifting the back on my tech camera to merge perfectly and let me print to over 100”.

    Your first question tried to exclude resolution. If you don’t print, you don’t need it, but in fact the resolution is key, and you can’t exclude it from the discussion. Nothing about MF will make better images to throw on a blog. If you just print up little stuff like 20x24’s or smaller (and don’t ever need to crop), then sure, it’s a lot of money for perhaps little gain. While there are many other things some of us really like about MF, if those don’t float your boat, fine. But bottom line to me are the prints.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    I started a thread, some time ago, regarding technical cameras and whether Live View was available on MF backs. The discussion veered off a bit, there were some side comments and after a while, it occurred to me that there may not be a compelling reason to go to MF from an image quality perspective. After digging a bit further, I realized that there are technical cameras that can accommodate 35mm DSLRs and Mirrorless systems. Further investigation revealed that the new generation of digital backs are based on pretty much the same sensor technology as those in Nikon and Sony systems.

    Granted, given that the MF sensor is bigger, especially the Full Format MF, we can get higher resolution at the same pixel pitch as the 35mm format.

    So, if we set resolution aside, is there a compelling reason from an image quality perspective to go with MF at what winds up being a considerable price premium? Granted that some, if not most MF backs are CCD and that may give the MF a certain look. However, CCD has a number of very real limitations and the trend is towards CMOS, which is what most 35mm digital cameras use. I can see that it's somewhat easier to work the tech cameras with a back, rather than a 35mm camera and there are more options available, but that seems to be an extremely niche market. Those who need movements can find them in 35mm ranging from TSE lenses to tech cameras accommodating the 35mm cameras.

    So, what is a compelling reason for you, those of you who have made the jump to have done so at such a high cost? What compelled you? Would you do it again? If you had your 35mm kit today, would you still change it for MF?
    Yes, You can achieve a certain level of single image capture quality with the new 100MP Medium Format Digital Back that you can't with any smaller format digital camera available today. I say again, single image capture.

    Is it worth it? Each person has a different answer to that question.

    The main thing is there are MANY factors to consider and the fact of the matter is that Medium Format Digital offers something different, in workflow, in optics, in bodies etc. Even within Medium Format Digital there is a huge range of choices.

    Choosing camera gear is almost always gonna be a matter of personal preference and hence, the endless discussions.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by CSP View Post
    sorry, this is what amateurs love to hear but it is not the reality , here are some points what in my view separates pros from amateurs:


    most pros are :


    able to work under pressure

    can deliver creativity when it is needed

    can organize and work with other creatives

    care more about light and less about cameras

    don´t need expansive gear to fill a creative void
    i would like to add: can deal with the visually unaware and manage client expectations
    and: make a silk purse out of a sows ear.
    never trust the opinion of anyone who lists a load of gear in their forum signature. Dealers do not email me asking to buy your products.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken_R View Post
    Yes, You can achieve a certain level of single image capture quality with the new 100MP Medium Format Digital Back that you can't with any smaller format digital camera available today. I say again, single image capture.

    Is it worth it? Each person has a different answer to that question.

    The main thing is there are MANY factors to consider and the fact of the matter is that Medium Format Digital offers something different, in workflow, in optics, in bodies etc. Even within Medium Format Digital there is a huge range of choices.

    Choosing camera gear is almost always gonna be a matter of personal preference and hence, the endless discussions.
    You are correct and if you read my subsequent posts, you'll see that I had unequivocally stated that greater resolution is the most compelling reason for owning MF.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Fox View Post
    You’re right ... who are you to judge? so why do you persist in doing so?
    Where do you see me PERSISTING in judging? How did you go from me saying "who am I to judge?" to "persisting in doing so?" Sometimes I feel as though we're not speaking the same language.

    This has been hammered to death for so long by so many people it’s getting quite tiresome. While it’s a correct statement that most don’t need it, those on this forum aren’t “most”. Extrapolating that most don’t need it means that most shooting MF don’t need it is a stretch. Your persistence in constantly hammering this point home is becoming a little inconsiderate and trollish. Having a point of view is fine, but quit trying to put everyone into your world.
    Once again, where do you see me "constantly hammering this point home"? I expressed this opinion once in the context of explaining my viewpoint.


    Your first question tried to exclude resolution. If you don’t print, you don’t need it, but in fact the resolution is key, and you can’t exclude it from the discussion .
    Please read my subsequent post regarding resolution.


    ... judging MF vs dSLR by looking at raw files isn’t how I make my decision. I decide by the prints.
    With all due respect, that's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. That's like saying you don't judge the quality of the image by the negative. The print is the third generation iteration of the image. RAW file is the base line. Once you've edited the RAW file, you have your second generation iteration of the image and the print is the third. So, judging the quality of the camera or the format by the print would be analogous to traveling via watching youtube videos about various places.
    Last edited by Abstraction; 17th March 2016 at 13:28.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    You are correct and if you read my subsequent posts, you'll see that I had unequivocally stated that greater resolution is the most compelling reason for owning MF.
    Increased resolution is the primary reason that maybe 25% to 30% of our clients upgrade for.

    Lens quality, color, option for tech/view cameras, tethering speed/stability, tonality, sync speed, aspect ratio etc etc are examples of why the remaining 70-75% are upgrading.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    When you're looking at a print, you're looking at post processing, you're looking at the printer quality, at the printer driver settings, you're looking at all kinds of things in addition to the quality of your camera/lens/format. That much is obvious and non-controversial. If you want to judge strictly the quality of your camera/lens/format combo, you have to look at the RAW file. That's the closest you're going to come to looking at the negative in this day and age. That too is obvious and not subject to controversy.

  25. #125
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Looking at your images I dont think you would benefit from MF.
    Just my honest opinion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    As I understand it from the link, you attach Rodenstock lenses to this camera down to 28mm. There is another camera made for mirrorless, but this one in particular is for DSLRS.



    If you think about it, all tech cameras are hacks since digital backs were originally designed for DSLRs. However, this particular camera is produced by Cambo, so as I see it, it's as good of a hack as any other Cambo. I would agree that it's probably a bit more limited than a Cambo made for digital backs, but my point is that it's so close that unless you're super specialized, there are solutions out there that will cover you 99% of the time



    Yeah, for the most part, I got my answer.

    Here are some images of the type of work that I do:











  26. #126
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paratom View Post
    Looking at your images I dont think you would benefit from MF.
    Just my honest opinion.
    I agree with you, but I was hoping I would because regardless of what you may think of my images, they're about color and tones and if the MF delivered greater color and/or tonal quality, I would see greater subtlety, perhaps. I was hoping to see that and the ability to use tech cameras appealed to me as well.

    Thank you for your feedback.

  27. #127
    Senior Member alajuela's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    [QUOTE=
    With all due respect, that's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. That's like saying you don't judge the quality of the image by the negative. The print is the third generation iteration of the image. RAW file is the base line. Once you've edited the RAW file, you have your second generation iteration of the image and the print is the third. So, judging the quality of the camera or the format by the print would be analogous to traveling via watching youtube videos about various places.[/QUOTE]



    This is the most silly statement I have heard in respect to photography.- We live on different planets. It is the print. Who hangs negatives on the wall? Who puts negatives in a show?

    All photography is a process with result being the final step -- the print. You want to put on a laptop, get a iPhone, I even saw some billboards shot with an iphone 6+.

    Maybe my response is too complicated. I'll simplify it for you It is the print--It is the print ---It is the print ----It is the print----It is the print
    Philip
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  28. #128
    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    Where do you see me PERSISTING in judging? How did you go from me saying "who am I to judge?" to "persisting in doing so?" Sometimes I feel as though we're not speaking the same language.
    I never realized you have never argued this point before. I just sensed from reading your posts you have discussed this point of view in the past. I didn’t know this was something new to you. Sorry for making the assumption that you were like the many others that bring up this point every time they get the chance. It does get tiring.

    Once again, where do you see me "constantly hammering this point home"? I expressed this opinion once in the context of explaining my viewpoint.
    my statement wasn’t about you specifically, it was in context of this very discussion that has been repeated constantly for over a decade now. Sorry I didn’t communicate that properly.


    With all due respect, that's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. That's like saying you don't judge the quality of the image by the negative. The print is the third generation iteration of the image. RAW file is the base line. Once you've edited the RAW file, you have your second generation iteration of the image and the print is the third. So, judging the quality of the camera or the format by the print would be analogous to traveling via watching youtube videos about various places.
    Who would judge the quality by a negative? What difference does it make what “iteration” it is. Bottom line the only that counts is what you can get out of the file or get out of a negative in the final visual product. That’s really the crux of the entire argument ... if all we ever did was create raw files, who cares? so to determine what systems gives us what we want, we have to use a system to produce what we want ... a print. certainly information can be had via pixel peeping, but anyone that tells me a .cr2 or NEF file of a scene is every bit as good as a IQ3 80 or IQ3 100 file doesn’t get it. If all you make is 13x19” prints and you print from those files, you may very well decide the MF isn’t necessary. For me the only way to tell is to make an 8 foot print and see which one is better.
    wayne
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  29. #129
    Member Abstraction's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Fox View Post
    I never realized you have never argued this point before. I just sensed from reading your posts you have discussed this point of view in the past. I didn’t know this was something new to you. Sorry for making the assumption that you were like the many others that bring up this point every time they get the chance. It does get tiring.

    my statement wasn’t about you specifically, it was in context of this very discussion that has been repeated constantly for over a decade now. Sorry I didn’t communicate that properly.
    I joined this forum fairly recently, so I'm not privy to older discussions on the subject. I don't even understand how this whole thing got out of hand, with egos and tempers flaring as though I insulted someone's mamma.

    Who would judge the quality by a negative? What difference does it make what “iteration” it is. Bottom line the only that counts is what you can get out of the file or get out of a negative in the final visual product. That’s really the crux of the entire argument ... if all we ever did was create raw files, who cares? so to determine what systems gives us what we want, we have to use a system to produce what we want ... a print. certainly information can be had via pixel peeping, but anyone that tells me a .cr2 or NEF file of a scene is every bit as good as a IQ3 80 or IQ3 100 file doesn’t get it. If all you make is 13x19” prints and you print from those files, you may very well decide the MF isn’t necessary. For me the only way to tell is to make an 8 foot print and see which one is better.

    Well, sure the most important thing is the end result, which is the print, but that's not what the discussion was about. It was about whether or not MF is worth the money and in order to judge whether it is or not, it is important to compare the output of one camera to another. Once you start massaging the files, correcting color, sharpness and so forth, you're no longer comparing the quality of the cameras or formats, you're starting to compare the quality of the massaged output. That's the reason I talked about looking at the RAW files, in order to eliminate as many variables as possible to see if MF was worth it for me . I wanted to get as close to the raw output (no pun intended) as I possibly could for a proper comparison.

  30. #130
    Senior Member stephengilbert's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    You all understand that there are some posters who will never allow someone else the final word?
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    Thumbs up Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Maybe Yes, maybe No.

    It depend's, according to what needed, according to MF type, according to quality level, according who sees the quality level, according to your skill and capability to squeeze the best performance from the MF equipment, according if the performances are understandable by who is involved in the selection of the works, according to the market need's.

    In brief : MF exist and is a way to take images and to work with.


    Do Remember that: also monkeys fall from the trees.

    Best regards, Domenico.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    I agree with you, but I was hoping I would because regardless of what you may think of my images, they're about color and tones and if the MF delivered greater color and/or tonal quality, I would see greater subtlety, perhaps. I was hoping to see that and the ability to use tech cameras appealed to me as well.

    Thank you for your feedback.

    You may see differences in all those parameters if you compared prints rather than look at compressed files on screen.

  33. #133
    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    I joined this forum fairly recently, so I'm not privy to older discussions on the subject. I don't even understand how this whole thing got out of hand, with egos and tempers flaring as though I insulted someone's mamma.
    It’s not just this forum. This discussion has been argued countless times over the last decade in many forums, and it seems every forum dedicated to MF such as this one on sites such as this one and Luminous Landscape sees many discussions end up with some arguing the point that no one, or hardly anyone, or most that have MF don’t need it. I think that’s why some of us get a little sensitive, it gets tiresome, especially when those who are telling us we don’t need it haven’t even ever shot MF digital. We tend to gather on these forums to discuss our chosen tools and share what we learn, and its seems we’re always trying to explain to others that have no experience in MF why we use it and why we feel we need to use it and when we do they say we don’t need it ...

    So anyway, as I mentioned, myself and as well as most who use MF have full kits of other cameras systems, usually including great glass and have tried systems other than MF. For a great variety of reasons we choose to use MF digital for most of what we do, and feel using it offers us the best chance at creating what we envision when making our final product.
    wayne
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Ansel Adams, like most of us here, would likely take issue with the concept of judging a camera strictly on the look of an unprocessed (no post) RAW file.

    “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” – Ansel Adams

    “The negative is the equivalent of the composer’s score, and the print the performance.” – Ansel Adams
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  35. #135
    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    At the risk of waking the horde of well wishers who never fail to seize an opportunity to proclaim how much my work sucks, I will agree with you. In the end, the format doesn't matter, the lenses don't matter past a certain point and we spend most of our time splitting hairs. However, given that most gear oriented forums are about splitting hairs, we may as well indulge.
    I was somewhat disappointed to see that and I'll offer up apologies on behalf of the majority of us here on the forums who believe that one man's art is ... Err, well their art. I never judge because often it's the unusual and abstract art that produces that image that captivates me much more than just another rock or another sunrise/sunset etc etc.

    As Dogs said, it's all good and we welcome everyone here. Really
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"
    Likes 2 Member(s) liked this post

  36. #136
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    My reflections coming from P45+ (and without reading the thread)

    Hi,

    Just to say, I am known as a medium format skeptic. I have been shooting for the last 2.5 years with a Hasselblad V system combined with a P45+ back in parallell with a Sony A99 camera.

    What I would say that I did not see a lot of difference between the two system using my standard processing toolchain, LR6/LR CC. The P45+ had an obvious advantage in resolution. Colour is a more tricky thing. Both systems were capable of pretty accurate colour with good colour profiles. Much depends on taste.

    What I have also found that the none of the three Distagons I have been trough have not been very good on the edges/corners. My DSLR zooms actually outperform the Distagons on the borders of the image. The Sonnar 180/4 is sharp across the field and so is the Planar 100/3.5. The Planar 120/4 is made for close work and performs well at that distance but has a lot of field curvature at infinity. I had two samples of the Planar 120 a CF and a CFi. I have a feeling they could do with a bit more of contrast. The Distagon 60/3.5 CF is OK, but doesn't keep up with my Canon 16-35/4 at 35 mm and f/8.

    I did not see a resolution advantage with the Hasselblad/P45+ combo at A2-sizes, but I think a clear advantage was visible at A1.

    Now I have moved to a Sony A7rII, what I have seen is that the A7rII performs on par with the Hasselblad/P45+ combo also on axis (close to centre).

    I am using the Sony A7rII with HCam Master TSII, a pocket size T&S adapter that takes both Canon lenses and my Hasselblad and Pentax 67 lenses. That works reasonably well.

    So, from my experience MFD is a bit of a looser, unless 60-100 MP is needed. PhaseOne and Hasselblad also have leaf shutters, and there are cases where a leaf shutter is needed.

    The Hasselblad V lenses are CF/CFi generation, they were made for film. The new Hasselblad H lenses generally seem to be better, according to MTF curves published by Hasselblad. They seem to be very good.

    Something that matters to me is that I can get a lightweight and transportable kit.

    I have something like this just now:

    A7rII
    Canon 16-35/4LS
    Canon 24-105/4L (better than it's reputation)
    Canon 24/3.5 TSE LII
    Sony FE 90/2.8G
    Sony 70-400/4-5.6G
    Metabones and Sony adapters
    HCam Master TS

    The above kit fits in a Kiboko Bataflae with some room, and weights around 10 kg, which is weight limit on many flights.

    I can also add some MF (Hassy or Pentax) lenses to the mix when weight is not an issue.

    Regarding the suggestion that recent MF lenses are better than 24x36 mm lenses, there may be something to it. But there are a lot of truly great 24x36 mm lenses emerging, like the Otus and Batis lines from Zeiss and the greatly improved Milvus 85/1.4 and 50/1.4 and the Sigma Art series.

    BUT, if you need 100 MP, MFD is the way to go. With 50 MP I am clearly skeptical and keep in mind that 50 MP is cropped frame MF, 44x33 mm.

    I may also add that I am keeping the Hassy/P45+ combo, unless someone gives a really good bid :-). The reason is I enjoy shooting with it. It is a great camera giving great images.

    Best regards
    Erik
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 17th March 2016 at 23:54.

  37. #137
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Yes,

    That is something that needs to be taken into account. But, 35mm lenses used to be better than MF-lenses. Now some MF lenses are very good, especially those made for technical cameras.

    On the other hand, cropped format MF is not that larger than 24x36 mm and some of the new 35 mm lenses are awesome, like the Milvus 50/.14, Milvus 85/1.4, Batis 85/1.8, Batis 25/2 (?), Sigma Art 35/1.5, Sigma At 50/1.4 and the three Otus lenses.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    One could argue that the lens for 35mm format has to be even better than the Mf lens, as more enlargement would be required to make the equivalent print size. Speaking about resolution primarily.

  38. #138
    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Re: My reflections coming from P45+ (and without reading the thread)

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Just to say, I am known as a medium format skeptic. I have been shooting for the last 2.5 years with a Hasselblad V system combined with a P45+ back in parallell with a Sony A99 camera.

    What I would say that I did not see a lot of difference between the two system using my standard processing toolchain, LR6/LR CC. The P45+ had an obvious advantage in resolution. Colour is a more tricky thing. Both systems were capable of pretty accurate colour with good colour profiles. Much depends on taste.

    What I have also found that the none of the three Distagons I have been trough have not been very good on the edges/corners. My DSLR zooms actually outperform the Distagons on the borders of the image. The Sonnar 180/4 is sharp across the field and so is the Planar 100/3.5. The Planar 120/4 is made for close work and performs well at that distance but has a lot of field curvature at infinity. I had two samples of the Planar 120 a CF and a CFi. I have a feeling they could do with a bit more of contrast. The Distagon 60/3.5 CF is OK, but doesn't keep up with my Canon 16-35/4 at 35 mm and f/8.

    I did not see a resolution advantage with the Hasselblad/P45+ combo at A2-sizes, but I think a clear advantage was visible at A1.

    Now I have moved to a Sony A7rII, what I have seen is that the A7rII performs on par with the Hasselblad/P45+ combo also on axis (close to centre).

    I am using the Sony A7rII with HCam Master TSII, a pocket size T&S adapter that takes both Canon lenses and my Hasselblad and Pentax 67 lenses. That works reasonably well.

    So, from my experience MFD is a bit of a looser, unless 60-100 MP is needed. PhaseOne and Hasselblad also have leaf shutters, and there are cases where a leaf shutter is needed.

    The Hasselblad V lenses are CF/CFi generation, they were made for film. The new Hasselblad H lenses generally seem to be better, according to MTF curves published by Hasselblad. They seem to be very good.

    Something that matters to me is that I can get a lightweight and transportable kit.

    I have something like this just now:

    A7rII
    Canon 16-35/4LS
    Canon 24-105/4L (better than it's reputation)
    Canon 24/3.5 TSE LII
    Sony FE 90/2.8G
    Sony 70-400/4-5.6G
    Metabones and Sony adapters
    HCam Master TS

    The above kit fits in a Kiboko Bataflae with some room, and weights around 10 kg, which is weight limit on many flights.

    I can also add some MF (Hassy or Pentax) lenses to the mix when weight is not an issue.

    Regarding the suggestion that recent MF lenses are better than 24x36 mm lenses, there may be something to it. But there are a lot of truly great 24x36 mm lenses emerging, like the Otus and Batis lines from Zeiss and the greatly improved Milvus 85/1.4 and 50/1.4 and the Sigma Art series.

    BUT, if you need 100 MP, MFD is the way to go. With 50 MP I am clearly skeptical and keep in mind that 50 MP is cropped frame MF, 44x33 mm.

    I may also add that I am keeping the Hassy/P45+ combo, unless someone gives a really good bid :-). The reason is I enjoy shooting with it. It is a great camera giving great images.

    Best regards
    Erik
    Your posts are always well thought out and well stated. I always appreciate your comments, and normally have little to disagree with.

    The main issue I have with your position here is you are comparing what is perhaps a camera body and lens system that aren’t optimal for a digital sensor, and more importantly a digital back which is now about 6 or more generations old. While the p45+ was certainly one of the stellar digital backs made and still can produce imagery which at least competes with the best smaller format systems in some situations, I would most likely also choose my Sony a7rII setup over the MF kit you describe as well. But current MF gear has advanced far beyond that, my current IQ3 80 and current lenses (rodenstock on Arca Swiss and Schneider on the Phase XF) far out performs my sony in resolution. Granted the gap has closed considerably and with the sony I’m somewhat comfortable printing up to 40”, but considering that’s only a little larger than my standard test print, I still can’t consider it for my main system and my goals when shooting.

    I have no doubt that under many circumstances with stitching I could achieve similar image quality to what I get with my MF gear, but considering 70% of my images are stitches from an IQ180, doing 2 or 3 times the captures to get the same information (and having to deal with 2 row stitches instead of single row) means I’ll stay with MF. And of course the remaining captures which are single shots I still want to be able to print 60 to 72”, something the sony files will struggle with. The only time I find myself using the sony gear are those occasions where I’m simply scouting, so I’m not planning on using any images (and in fact probably only have 2 zooms and no tripod), or on occasions where the hike is somewhat daunting for my aged body and I have to lighten the pack, Even then I may choose the Arca system and only take 2 or 3 lenses, which weighs less than my sony kit or I’ll drag along one of my two very fit son-in-laws as a sherpa and pack my gear .. they are always asking to come along anyway and don’t mind carrying the bag.

    The good news is new systems have brought higher quality to many who yearned for it but found it out of their budget. I’m fortunate in that through out my photography career of 40 years I did well and it allows me to use this equipment. But I’m glad technology continues to bring quality improvements to others to enjoy. Whether we will ever reach a point in time that a very small sensor can deliver outstanding large prints remains to be seen, but I’ll never underestimate the scientists and engineers who keep striving to improve things - as one of my employees always says “it’s a great time to be alive if you are a photographer”.
    wayne
    My gallery

  39. #139
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: My reflections coming from P45+ (and without reading the thread)

    Hi Wayne,

    Your thoughtful response is much appreciated. I have written in my original post that MFD is the way to go if you need 60-100 MP and I think that is consistent with your writing.

    What I would ask if you would consider that present generation cropped frame MFD in the 40-60 MP interval used on a DSLR type body still makes a lot of sense over a well configured 24x36mm 40-50 MP system?

    The reason I am asking is that I don't have such a system, but I guess that many folks go into low end MTF and it could be they would be better served with high end 24x36 mm. With the new CMOS sensors, all made by Sony, the sensor side should be pretty similar.

    For large prints, I am easy to persuade that larger formats are beneficial. For my part I don't have the wall space for very large prints and I also don't have the economic means for high end MFD. My reservations are about low end MFD, like the stuff I own. I actually enjoy shooting with it, but I don't think it makes a lot of sense to buy old MFD stuff.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Fox View Post
    Your posts are always well thought out and well stated. I always appreciate your comments, and normally have little to disagree with.

    The main issue I have with your position here is you are comparing what is perhaps a camera body and lens system that aren’t optimal for a digital sensor, and more importantly a digital back which is now about 6 or more generations old. While the p45+ was certainly one of the stellar digital backs made and still can produce imagery which at least competes with the best smaller format systems in some situations, I would most likely also choose my Sony a7rII setup over the MF kit you describe as well. But current MF gear has advanced far beyond that, my current IQ3 80 and current lenses (rodenstock on Arca Swiss and Schneider on the Phase XF) far out performs my sony in resolution. Granted the gap has closed considerably and with the sony I’m somewhat comfortable printing up to 40”, but considering that’s only a little larger than my standard test print, I still can’t consider it for my main system and my goals when shooting.

    I have no doubt that under many circumstances with stitching I could achieve similar image quality to what I get with my MF gear, but considering 70% of my images are stitches from an IQ180, doing 2 or 3 times the captures to get the same information (and having to deal with 2 row stitches instead of single row) means I’ll stay with MF. And of course the remaining captures which are single shots I still want to be able to print 60 to 72”, something the sony files will struggle with. The only time I find myself using the sony gear are those occasions where I’m simply scouting, so I’m not planning on using any images (and in fact probably only have 2 zooms and no tripod), or on occasions where the hike is somewhat daunting for my aged body and I have to lighten the pack, Even then I may choose the Arca system and only take 2 or 3 lenses, which weighs less than my sony kit or I’ll drag along one of my two very fit son-in-laws as a sherpa and pack my gear .. they are always asking to come along anyway and don’t mind carrying the bag.

    The good news is new systems have brought higher quality to many who yearned for it but found it out of their budget. I’m fortunate in that through out my photography career of 40 years I did well and it allows me to use this equipment. But I’m glad technology continues to bring quality improvements to others to enjoy. Whether we will ever reach a point in time that a very small sensor can deliver outstanding large prints remains to be seen, but I’ll never underestimate the scientists and engineers who keep striving to improve things - as one of my employees always says “it’s a great time to be alive if you are a photographer”.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 18th March 2016 at 11:10.

  40. #140
    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    I have to think that for every advance made to small sensor cameras, the same advances are applied to the newer larger sensors ... and to produce even better results. That's not even considering the latest Phase LS lenses and the Rodenstock technical camera lenses.

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    What I would ask if you would consider that present generation cropped frame MFD in the 40-60 MP interval used on a DSLR type body still makes a lot of sense over a well configured 24x36MP system?

    Best regards
    Erik
    I'm not Wayne but in my experience of shooting A7RII, RX1RII against my Phase One IQ150 I'd certainly say yes because of the complete system of the sensor, bodies and lenses. The Sonys are excellent but don't really compare at the end of the imaging chain, perhaps with the exception of my Canon TSE lenses that I use with my Alpa FPS. The latest Phase One / Schneider 35mm LS is turning out to be a great leveller of technical camera lenses vs those for the Phase One DSLR platform. (I love mine!! But I still prefer my 32HRw for rise/fall).

    42mp vs 50mp is practically irrelevant.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

  41. #141
    Member Abstraction's Avatar
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    Re: My reflections coming from P45+ (and without reading the thread)

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    I was somewhat disappointed to see that and I'll offer up apologies on behalf of the majority of us here on the forums who believe that one man's art is ... Err, well their art. I never judge because often it's the unusual and abstract art that produces that image that captivates me much more than just another rock or another sunrise/sunset etc etc.

    As Dogs said, it's all good and we welcome everyone here. Really

    Thanks Graham, that's much appreciated. It's nice to see adults coming back here.


    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Just to say, I am known as a medium format skeptic. I have been shooting for the last 2.5 years with a Hasselblad V system combined with a P45+ back in parallell with a Sony A99 camera.

    What I would say that I did not see a lot of difference between the two system using my standard processing toolchain, LR6/LR CC. The P45+ had an obvious advantage in resolution. Colour is a more tricky thing. Both systems were capable of pretty accurate colour with good colour profiles. Much depends on taste.


    I did not see a resolution advantage with the Hasselblad/P45+ combo at A2-sizes, but I think a clear advantage was visible at A1.

    Now I have moved to a Sony A7rII, what I have seen is that the A7rII performs on par with the Hasselblad/P45+ combo also on axis (close to centre).

    I am using the Sony A7rII with HCam Master TSII, a pocket size T&S adapter that takes both Canon lenses and my Hasselblad and Pentax 67 lenses. That works reasonably well.

    So, from my experience MFD is a bit of a looser, unless 60-100 MP is needed. PhaseOne and Hasselblad also have leaf shutters, and there are cases where a leaf shutter is needed.


    BUT, if you need 100 MP, MFD is the way to go. With 50 MP I am clearly skeptical and keep in mind that 50 MP is cropped frame MF, 44x33 mm.
    That's exactly what I've been trying to say. Thank you for putting it so succinctly.

  42. #142
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    "Nice to see adults coming back here?"

    Really? Perhaps you do not recognize it, but that's easily taken as insulting by exclusion.


    BTW, I do not think anyone was saying your work sucked the way you imply ... just that for the samples you chose to show, that you probably do not need MFD. While you could do such work with MFD, by your own evaluation you do not need it. I doubt few would disagree. Nothing wrong with that.

    What is assumptive on your part is to postulate that by extension or implication no one else needs it either, and I'm not just referencing resolution. Even if others may agree with you, so what? What is right and what is not is by individual judgement, not a universal fact.


    "So, to clarify my statement, NEED is something you can't do without, not something that's nice to have."

    Your statement above seems the crux of your discussion.

    However, "Need" is defined by the user. What may be "nice to have" for some, may be an essential "need" for another.

    Many discriminate between systems as well as formats. We all have choices with-in the same format, let alone between formats ... which is usually a "systems decision" based on the purpose and aesthetic expectations behind those decisions.

    What you refer to as "splitting hairs" is thought of as craftsmanship to others.

    Each individual system provides differences in subjective "Image Qualities" as opposed to "Image Quality" (often seen as a metric). The two concepts are different. MF provides different Image Qualities from smaller formats, and different MFD systems provide choices in Image Qualities between one another.

    Not sure what is so hard about understanding that.

    - Marc
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    I agree with Marc, it's not anything negative on your images, it's the fact that what you show is unlikely to benefit from what MF offers, I doubt that enlarging any of those abstract shots will do serious damage to them.

    I also agree that what the individual wants will dictate what they buy, remember you are asking this in a forum full of people who have already justified it to themselves, worked hard and are quite happy using it, a lot of people have answered your question as to why it works for them but it won't have any bearing on what works for you.

    Erik is someone who visits some very nice places but I can honestly say that as Wayne has pointed out above, judging the performance and value of MF as a whole based on the images he is able to produce with his equipment is maybe doing it a disservice, having looked at a lot of Erik's shots, I can not honestly say that looking at a P45+ shot of his I have felt that I am looking at the pinnacle of the format, it doesn't get better than that, maybe it's the equipment, maybe the processing, who knows but I know that if I was getting the same results then I too would be looking elsewhere, but I don't.

    Bottom line is that working out your budget, researching what you can get within it and then getting your hands on it and actually shooting your subjects in your own way is the only way to decide what is right for you, I wouldn't buy a point and shoot without testing so no way I'd buy 35mm or mf without knowing how it works for me, how it works for anyone else is of no relevance.

    Mat

  44. #144
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by mjr View Post
    I agree with Marc, it's not anything negative on your images, it's the fact that what you show is unlikely to benefit from what MF offers, I doubt that enlarging any of those abstract shots will do serious damage to them.
    You're right from a resolution perspective, but since many folks talk about medium format being better for tonality, I thought I would benefit in that regard. That's one of the reasons I wanted to exclude resolution from this discussion.

    also agree that what the individual wants will dictate what they buy, remember you are asking this in a forum full of people who have already justified it to themselves, worked hard and are quite happy using it, a lot of people have answered your question as to why it works for them but it won't have any bearing on what works for you.
    That's precisely the reason I asked it on this forum. I wanted to hear from people who have med format equipment, who use it on regular basis and I wanted to hear their take on things and extrapolate how that relates to me and what I do.


    Erik is someone who visits some very nice places but I can honestly say that as Wayne has pointed out above, judging the performance and value of MF as a whole based on the images he is able to produce with his equipment is maybe doing it a disservice, having looked at a lot of Erik's shots, I can not honestly say that looking at a P45+ shot of his I have felt that I am looking at the pinnacle of the format, it doesn't get better than that, maybe it's the equipment, maybe the processing, who knows but I know that if I was getting the same results then I too would be looking elsewhere, but I don't.
    I'm intrigued. I'll have to take a look at Erik's work.

    Bottom line is that working out your budget, researching what you can get within it and then getting your hands on it and actually shooting your subjects in your own way is the only way to decide what is right for you, I wouldn't buy a point and shoot without testing so no way I'd buy 35mm or mf without knowing how it works for me, how it works for anyone else is of no relevance.

    Mat
    You have to start somewhere in your research, so what better place to start than to pick the brains of people who actually use it and have been using it for a long time?

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    I switched to MF many years ago while still using a iDsII to capture landscape and have never regretted that decision.

    In looking for the answer one must first try the equipment first to see if it fits in your workflow rather than rely on others. If it fits and you like it then you have your answer; likewise if it doesn't fit and you don't like it you still have your answer. Seeking out the compelling reasons why others choose to use MF can be dangerous if you don't have firsthand knowledge.

    As good as MF is there are also pitfalls; the need of a larger computer, learning new processing software, etc. You might be able to limp along with your current computer however, if you haven't mastered the software you'll never be satisfied with your results.

    Just some random thoughts on a subject that keeps popping up here and elsewhere.
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  46. #146
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    You are wellcome to check my work here: echophoto

    The images here are intended as sample images and thus accompanied by raw images:
    http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/Ar...ernardSamples/

    To elaborate a little bit on my previous postings:

    I cannot compare with other images, as it is pretty rare that MF images are posted in raw format.

    I am doing my processing in Lightroom although I own both Capture One 7 and 8 versions, but that software doesn't work for me.

    With regard to my equipment, I have been trough 2 Sonnars 150/4, Planar 80/2.8, Distagon 40/4, Distagon 50/4, Distagon 60/3.5, 2 Planar 120/4 and a Sonnar 180/4. So I don't think it is probable that all would be substandard. To that comes possible lack of focusing skills, but it seems that I have more problems with moiré than most and that arises only when the lens outresolves the sensor.

    I am essentially processing my MFD images identically to my Sony images. So that is a proper comparison. On the other hand I want realistic colour, and I don't want to oversharpen my images.

    Capture One clearly oversharpens the images from the Planar 100/3.5, for instance at default settings. How I know, simply because I measured MTF and it was way above 100% at low frequencies.

    Anyway, I do very similar processing on both Sony and P45+, so my lack of processing skills affects both systems similarly.

    One subtle point to make is that the price of an IQ 150 back you can buy the following stuff:

    A Sony A7rII
    All three Zeiss Otus lenses
    Canon 17/4 TSE L
    Canon 24/3.5 TSE LII

    So, it is clearly possible to build a very qualified system for just the price of the back. I don't know how such a system compares with a Phase One system. Both systems use a similar sensor made by the same vendor. I have taken the Sony A7rII as an example, because it is what I own and because it enables me to use T&S with many of my lenses.

    I could of course taken a Canon 5DsR or a Nikon D810 instead of the Sony A7rII, but Nikon cannot take Canon T&S lenses.

    Now, I don't think there is any issue with MFD. Indeed, if > 50 MP is needed MFD is the only option. But I don't think there is a compelling reason to go to MFD especially if we exclude resulution which was the question the OP posted. Keep in mind that sensors are essentially the same and the hard part of the work is made by Sony. Vendors can play some tricks on raw files, but any of those tricks can be applied to a proper raw file in the post.

    Interestingly, I am aware of two well know architecture photographers who converted from MFD to A7rII, namely Chris Barret who went from Phase One IQ-260 (AFAIK) to Sony A7r on Arca Swiss Universalis, which he uses with quite a few of the same lenses I have.

    The other one is Rainer Viertlböck, a German architecture photographer who has been heavily involved in the development of the Sinar Arctec. Rainer is now on A7r using a lot of different lenses with Mirex T&S adapters, like I do. :-) Yeah, I know that using same gear doesn't turn me into a great architecture photographer :-) But it sort of shows that folks who have been there and done that find smaller formats a practical replacement.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    I'm intrigued. I'll have to take a look at Erik's work.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 18th March 2016 at 11:51.

  47. #147
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    You are wellcome to check my work here: echophoto

    The images here are intended as sample images and thus accompanied by raw images:
    http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/Ar...ernardSamples/

    I cannot compare with other images, as it is pretty rare that MF images are posted in raw format.

    I am doing my processing in Lightroom although I own both Capture One 7 and 8 versions, but that software doesn't work for me.

    Best regards
    Erik
    Thanks, Erik! I'll check the stuff out.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    I replied to this thread earlier without any comments in regard to my post. In light of the recent additions, I will offer this, in line with some of my original comments...

    To me, medium format offers other functional assets THAT SIMPLY CANNOT BE ACHIEVED WITH A DSLR. The three most notable are:


    1. Syncing with high powered studio strobes up to 1/1600s. This is achieved through leaf shutters (not available on 35mm DSLR's) and through the Profoto Air Sync wizardry (speed of signal). This allows a SINGLE strobe to provide enough fill light to shoot an individual in the bright sun on any day at f2.8 and have a beautifully diffuse background. You cannot do that with a DSLR. Period. Maximum flash sync for a DSLR is 1/125s - 1/250s, in general 3+ stops less. The amount of light that you can add as fill is ALOT more than speedlites, even ganged together (which I have done many times). To do this with a DSLR, you would first need to use an f2.0 DSLR lens to equal the look of the f2.8 MF lens and you would have to use a lot of speedlites. And the further you want to move the speedlites away from your subject, to allow for more latitude with framing your shot, the more of them you would need. More to handle, more batteries, more risk, more to go wrong.
    2. Triggering your strobes with a radio transmitter that is actually built-in to the camera. Turn it on and shoot. Done. You cannot do that with a DSLR. Period. Therefore, no risk of loss or damage to your transmitter. No batteries to worry about. Easy. Convenient.
    3. Resolution can be changed easily based on needs. With a DSLR, you have to change the entire body to something different to go from 20MP to 50MP (the max at this point in time). With MFD, you change the back. Need more resolution for a project or a use? Rent a 100MP back. Need less? Use the one you already own or rent a different one. The body and lenses stay the same. Your use of them is routine since you are accustomed to their operation.


    The focus seems to continue to be on the capture and that will be debated until the end of time. Sometimes I agree and sometimes I disagree. It depends on so many factors from the techniques used from capture to print that the discussion is largely pointless. But, when you are working with your gear, it is indisputable that each system, under certain circumstances, shines over the other from a functional perspective. I have simply pointed out where the MFD system shines for me. Oh, and my DSLR is 18MP and my MFD is 60MP, so although resolution was supposed to have been left out of the discussion, that is IMHO not a reasonable constraint to artificially apply to the discussion. The reason being, medium format offers something that DSLR's cannot provide, (namely 60MP, 80MP and 100MP image capture devices). And THAT is very relevant.

    Below is a screenshot example of my point #1...
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  49. #149
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Transposure View Post
    I replied to this thread earlier without any comments in regard to my post. In light of the recent additions, I will offer this, in line with some of my original comments...

    To me, medium format offers other functional assets THAT SIMPLY CANNOT BE ACHIEVED WITH A DSLR. The three most notable are:


    1. Syncing with high powered studio strobes up to 1/1600s. This is achieved through leaf shutters (not available on 35mm DSLR's) and through the Profoto Air Sync wizardry (speed of signal). This allows a SINGLE strobe to provide enough fill light to shoot an individual in the bright sun on any day at f2.8 and have a beautifully diffuse background. You cannot do that with a DSLR. Period. Maximum flash sync for a DSLR is 1/125s - 1/250s, in general 3+ stops less. The amount of light that you can add as fill is ALOT more than speedlites, even ganged together (which I have done many times). To do this with a DSLR, you would first need to use an f2.0 DSLR lens to equal the look of the f2.8 MF lens and you would have to use a lot of speedlites. And the further you want to move the speedlites away from your subject, to allow for more latitude with framing your shot, the more of them you would need. More to handle, more batteries, more risk, more to go wrong.
    2. Triggering your strobes with a radio transmitter that is actually built-in to the camera. Turn it on and shoot. Done. You cannot do that with a DSLR. Period. Therefore, no risk of loss or damage to your transmitter. No batteries to worry about. Easy. Convenient.
    3. Resolution can be changed easily based on needs. With a DSLR, you have to change the entire body to something different to go from 20MP to 50MP (the max at this point in time). With MFD, you change the back. Need more resolution for a project or a use? Rent a 100MP back. Need less? Use the one you already own or rent a different one. The body and lenses stay the same. Your use of them is routine since you are accustomed to their operation.


    The focus seems to continue to be on the capture and that will be debated until the end of time. Sometimes I agree and sometimes I disagree. It depends on so many factors from the techniques used from capture to print that the discussion is largely pointless. But, when you are working with your gear, it is indisputable that each system, under certain circumstances, shines over the other from a functional perspective. I have simply pointed out where the MFD system shines for me. Oh, and my DSLR is 18MP and my MFD is 60MP, so although resolution was supposed to have been left out of the discussion, that is IMHO not a reasonable constraint to artificially apply to the discussion. The reason being, medium format offers something that DSLR's cannot provide, (namely 60MP, 80MP and 100MP image capture devices). And THAT is very relevant.

    Below is a screenshot example of my point #1...

    I completely agree with you. I should have qualified my criteria a bit more. In order to compare apples to apples, I wanted to limit the discussion to high resolution full frame cameras ranging from Nikon 810 to Canon 5DSr and Sony in between and MF ranging from Leica to Phase/Credo 60mp backs. Obviously, once you get significantly past 60mp, resolution will come into play and in a very big way.

    BTW, that's a beautiful shot.

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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    By way of balance to Ken's beauty, here's a nothing special, handheld shot at ISO800 with the Leica S, not all pixels are created equal, 37mp and I promise you, the tonal transitions and depth of this shot are impossible to achieve with the Nikon, I used a D800 and D800E setup for 2 years with the best Zeiss glass and could never get the same feel as I could with the Leica, I have many thousands of portrait shots to prove it. It's not necessary to look at 100%, you just need to look at the image as a whole to see the differences.

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