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

  1. #151
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    I don't really see the reason to compare 18 MP on DSLR to 80 MP on MFD. State of the art in DSLRs is 36-50 MP for low ISO shooting.

    Regarding short sync times, it is clearly an advantage of leaf shutter technology over focal plane shutter. It is important for some kinds of shooting, but for a lot of shooting it is not very important. Just to make a counter argument, no MFD offers contrast detect AF in live view or 10 FPS per second or dozens of AF points. Being able to do accurate focus over a large part of the image area also plays a role. Horses for the courses…

    What is pretty obvious today, with all MFD makers except Leica having CMOS sensors developed by Sony, is that MFD sensors are on the same development curve as smaller formats. That means that they can fully play the format advantage, just like in film days. Digital sensors are incredibly good, so making best use of them is more critical than ever. Just as an example, a digital sensor is flat. Film always had some curvature except on some Contax cameras with a vacuum plate.

    So, MFD will give a significant resolution advantage, but only in a single plane of focus. So, technical cameras make a lot of sense as they can achieve extended focus for a single plane without stopping down, utilising the Scheimpflug principle.

    MFD will also have something like 1.5 stop in ISO speed advantage. An IQ-3-100MP will have the same noise at 4500 ISO as a Sony A7rII/Nikon D810/Canon 5DsR at 1600 ISO. MFD being a high ISO champ? Yes, with recent CMOS sensors.

    On the other hand, if you need to stop down for DoF the playing field will be much more level. With MFD you need to stop down 1.5 stop more for same DoF. That will eat up the ISO advantage and also the resolution advantage as diffraction will take it's toll (*).

    Getting back to flash sync speeds, that has always been an advantage of leaf shutters. There is no reason that we have FP shutters with 24x36mm, except economics and fast shutter times being a sales argument. But, market did not ask for leaf shutters in 24x36.

    Best regards
    Erik

    (*) For most aspects, exposure time and diameter of the aperture decides the image quality. Say that you shoot f/9.1 on an 80 mm lens and f/5.6 on a 50 mm lens. Aperture diameter in both cases is around 8.8 mm, so resolution and diffraction will be the same when printed at the same size, excellent lenses assumed.


    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...
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 18th March 2016 at 20:57. Reason: (*) Example reworked for smaller apertures

  2. #152
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    Just a few comments:

    1) Using strobe at high speeds is an advantage if there is a a lot of ambient light you want to get rid of. Many folks shoot mostly in ambient light. Yes, leaf shutters have advantages.

    2) Great respect for Schneider (who now left the MFD business), although they still work with Phase One on lens design. But, almost any decent lens resolves to well above 100 lp/mm at least in the sweet spot. Erwin Puts measured something like six older 50 mm lenses from Canon, Nikon, Leica and Contax and all resolved above 200 lp/mm albeit with low contrast. To make use of those 100 lp/mm you need a 0.005 micron sensor, the 60 MP sensors resolve 83 lp/mm while the IQ-180/280/380 resolves 97 lp/mm (that is pretty close to 100 lp/mm). Sony A7rII resolves 110 lp/mm and Canon 5DsR resolves 121 lp/mm

    3,4,5,6) An MF DSLR will not give you tilt and swings. Arca and Cambo seem to make decent business selling optical bench cameras with full movements utilising the A7xx sensors. T&S adapters from Mirex, HCam and Kipon give a decent amount of shift and tilt and they are pocket size.

    7) A7rII has fully electronic shutter, totally vibration free at any shutter speeds. It has also an electronic first shutter curtain that essentially eliminates vibration s at long shutter speeds as the shutter opens electronically. The shutter closes mechanically but does it in less than 1/300s. Vibrations are an issue on the original A7r. I am pretty sure both Canon and Nikon have electronic first shutter curtain on their latest cameras.

    8) I tend to agree that the 4:3 has an advantage to 3:2 in many cases but in many other cases 3:2 has advantages, in real world both formats need to be cropped.

    9) Built in lens profiles in C1 is no advantage for Pentax 645, Leica S or Hassy users, but C1 has lens profiles for many other lenses including Canon.

    10) The capture profiles built in C1 are also there for Canon, Nikon and others, the ones intended for team phase one backs are probably better than others. You can use C1 with 24x35 mm cameras but not with non Team Phase One cameras.

    As a side note, Hasselblad offers T&S using the HTS adapter. The HTS records shifts and tilts in the raw file and Phocus applies corrections automatically. I have noticed that IQ3-100MP raw files seem to have fields for tilt and shift, so a similar technique may come to Phase One.

    So, as you see, many of those compelling points are not valid for MFD in general, just for an MFD used on a technical camera, and nothing precludes using a mirrorless 24x36 mm system with a technical camera. Capture One does not support non Team Phase One cameras/backs but supports most leading 24x36 mm and smaller format cameras. MFD is more than just the Team Phase One echo system. Hasselblad, Pentax and Leica are other major players.

    Now, I am perfectly sure that MFD systems are great stuff. I have an older MF system and I enjoy shooting with it, but it doesn't really have a T&S capability that I would call usable in the field (I have a Hasselblad Flexbody and a P45+). T&S was actually the major reason I bought the A7rII. For the cost of an IQ-150 back alone I can buy an A7rII, both Canon T&S wides (24 and 17 mm) and all three Otus lenses. A couple hundred $ more also gives me a TS-adapter.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by Jamgolf View Post
    No, I don't think it would be fair or accurate to say that.

    Aside from resolution or the medium format look there are many other reasons. I can mention a few:

    1. Possibility to use leaf-shutters and strobes for ambient light control
    2. Possibility of using some of the finest lenses available with up to 100 line pairs/mm (Rodenstock/Schneider)
    3. Ability to achieve perfect composition in camera via rise/fall/shift
    4. Ability to stay within the optimal aperture range of the lens via use of tilt
    5. Ability to achieve focus in unique situations via swing
    6. Ability to achieve perfect stitches by using the far larger image circles of the MF lenses
    7. No worries about shutter vibration when using slower shutter speeds
    8. 4:3 aspect ratio over 3:2
    9. Built-in lens profiles in Capture One
    10. Beautiful color profiles in Capture One


    Some of these are technical camera specific since that is how I use my digital back.
    Whether some/any of these are important for you is for you to decide.
    The point is that there ARE many other compelling reasons.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 18th March 2016 at 22:15.

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

    abstraction - the reason people got annoyed with you is that despite your claims that you are just researching, you are clearly looking for people to say what you want to hear.

    erik - I'm using a 645z so I fit into your sceptic bracket tell me, honestly do you think a a7r2 would compete with a 645z with a good lens. When I compared the 645z to a 5dsr the MF files were so superior the difference was striking. I'm sure in a studio the canon would do ok - but when we tested them outdoors the MF files smoked the canon.

    Have a look at these shots last week I took. Please note I'm not a landscape guy, just a wedding photographer who went on a hike in new zealand with a 645z and a few lenses. All handheld. The good ones are the mountain shots roughly halfway down. These are the new 35/3.5 at f10'ish.

    Happy Snaps from NZ! | Wollongong, Illawarra, Southern Highlands, Sydney & Destination wedding photography

    exif info is intact (the couple with no info are the Blad 110/2). the ones with the 35mm - the full size raws are just so much sharper & detailed than anything i've seen from any 35 system. i'm just baffled that anyone could be skeptical there isn't much or any advantage in terms of pure IQ.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Gavin, those are great, evocative shots of the Mackenzie Country and the mountains. They are so quintessentially about the place. Congratulations.

    Quote Originally Posted by gavincato View Post
    abstraction - the reason people got annoyed with you is that despite your claims that you are just researching, you are clearly looking for people to say what you want to hear.

    erik - I'm using a 645z so I fit into your sceptic bracket tell me, honestly do you think a a7r2 would compete with a 645z with a good lens. When I compared the 645z to a 5dsr the MF files were so superior the difference was striking. I'm sure in a studio the canon would do ok - but when we tested them outdoors the MF files smoked the canon.

    Have a look at these shots last week I took. Please note I'm not a landscape guy, just a wedding photographer who went on a hike in new zealand with a 645z and a few lenses. All handheld. The good ones are the mountain shots roughly halfway down. These are the new 35/3.5 at f10'ish.

    Happy Snaps from NZ! | Wollongong, Illawarra, Southern Highlands, Sydney & Destination wedding photography

    exif info is intact (the couple with no info are the Blad 110/2). the ones with the 35mm - the full size raws are just so much sharper & detailed than anything i've seen from any 35 system. i'm just baffled that anyone could be skeptical there isn't much or any advantage in terms of pure IQ.

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

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Just a few comments:

    1) Using strobe at high speeds is an advantage if there is a a lot of ambient light you want to get rid of. Many folks shoot mostly in ambient light. Yes, leaf shutters have advantages.

    2) Great respect for Schneider (who now left the MFD business), although they still work with Phase One on lens design. But, almost any decent lens resolves to well above 100 lp/mm at least in the sweet spot. Erwin Puts measured something like six older 50 mm lenses from Canon, Nikon, Leica and Contax and all resolved above 200 lp/mm albeit with low contrast. To make use of those 100 lp/mm you need a 0.005 micron sensor, the 60 MP sensors resolve 83 lp/mm while the IQ-180/280/380 resolves 97 lp/mm (that is pretty close to 100 lp/mm). Sony A7rII resolves 110 lp/mm and Canon 5DsR resolves 121 lp/mm

    3,4,5,6) An MF DSLR will not give you tilt and swings. Arca and Cambo seem to make decent business selling optical bench cameras with full movements utilising the A7xx sensors. T&S adapters from Mirex, HCam and Kipon give a decent amount of shift and tilt and they are pocket size.

    7) A7rII has fully electronic shutter, totally vibration free at any shutter speeds. It has also an electronic first shutter curtain that essentially eliminates vibration s at long shutter speeds as the shutter opens electronically. The shutter closes mechanically but does it in less than 1/300s. Vibrations are an issue on the original A7r. I am pretty sure both Canon and Nikon have electronic first shutter curtain on their latest cameras.

    8) I tend to agree that the 4:3 has an advantage to 3:2 in many cases but in many other cases 3:2 has advantages, in real world both formats need to be cropped.

    9) Built in lens profiles in C1 is no advantage for Pentax 645, Leica S or Hassy users, but C1 has lens profiles for many other lenses including Canon.

    10) The capture profiles built in C1 are also there for Canon, Nikon and others, the ones intended for team phase one backs are probably better than others. You can use C1 with 24x35 mm cameras but not with non Team Phase One cameras.

    As a side note, Hasselblad offers T&S using the HTS adapter. The HTS records shifts and tilts in the raw file and Phocus applies corrections automatically. I have noticed that IQ3-100MP raw files seem to have fields for tilt and shift, so a similar technique may come to Phase One.

    So, as you see, many of those compelling points are not valid for MFD in general, just for an MFD used on a technical camera, and nothing precludes using a mirrorless 24x36 mm system with a technical camera. Capture One does not support non Team Phase One cameras/backs but supports most leading 24x36 mm and smaller format cameras. MFD is more than just the Team Phase One echo system. Hasselblad, Pentax and Leica are other major players.

    Now, I am perfectly sure that MFD systems are great stuff. I have an older MF system and I enjoy shooting with it, but it doesn't really have a T&S capability that I would call usable in the field (I have a Hasselblad Flexbody and a P45+). T&S was actually the major reason I bought the A7rII. For the cost of an IQ-150 back alone I can buy an A7rII, both Canon T&S wides (24 and 17 mm) and all three Otus lenses. A couple hundred $ more also gives me a TS-adapter.

    Best regards
    Erik
    In my general experience, photographers select MFD for 5 reasons based on primary need 1) Resolution from larger meg backs for either reproduction/documentation, large printing, diverse cropping ability (frequent in commercial repurposing of images); 2) T/S work using a fully articulated studio camera with a hi res back; 3) High speed sync strobe use with any meg back (which is more prevalent than most here may think); 4) Some specialty applications like Multi-shot, and aerial or industrial cameras 5) subjective preference for the look and feel of MFD "system" output (complete image chain).

    Your remarks above are pretty comprehensive and presumably speaks to your specific needs. Like with any argument, it is skewed by damning with faint praise, while omitting the deficiencies of the favored opinion. Again, you seem to be comparing experiences with the latest 35mm tech to your older MFD tech.

    A few responses:

    1) Top sync speed with full strobe output on my Leica S is 1/1000 with no vignetting. It was 1/800th with my previous Hasselblad H. The Sony A7R-II is only 1/180 and the A7R-II doesn't even have a PC sync port to hard wire anything to it when shooting with a speed-light for fill.

    While higher sync has a clear advantage in controlling ambient, it isn't just "... in a lot of ambient" ... it is ANY ambient. I've used it to kill distracting backgrounds indoors for example, including indoor locations infected by ambient I have no control over other than higher sync speed... or to lessen mixed lighting effects in areas where the subject/background metering is in no-man's-land.

    The unmentioned additional high sync advantages are: ability to control unwanted motion in brighter backgrounds not effected by the subject lighting flash duration. 1/1000 shutter beats 1/180 all day long. I can also shoot @ 1/1000 with a wider open aperture with flash without blowing out a brighter background.

    3,4,5,6) A MF DSLR doesn't need to provide T/S ... the removable backs from Phase, Leaf, Sinar and Hasselblad do. Allowing you the choice of a wide variety of technical cameras ... I used a Rollie Xact-II for full front back movements in studio with a fixed back and a M/S back, could remove it and put it on a mobile ALPA type camera if I wanted, then back to SLR use.

    BTW, I also used Hasselblad's HT/S on my Leica S camera to excellent effect. The S electronically allows full function use of HC & HCD lenses and Contax 645 lenses including Contax's excellent T/S bellows unit. The disadvantage is the HT/S is the 1.5X magnification factor making the widest FOV 36mm (28mm in 35mm terms).

    All that said, were I in need of T/S today (I'm not) ... I'd go exactly the same route you did (or rent what I needed) because for me the call for it isn't that demanding anymore, and not worth the expense of owning a hi res MFD T/S solution or a 35mm one for that matter. BTW, Otis lenses would not be part of my mix since they are manual and negate the A7R-II advantage of advanced AF ... and are as big as many MFD lenses on a tiny body.

    7) Yes, the A7R-II virtually fixed the shutter slap issues of the A7R (or I would never have bought my A7R-II). How is the A7R-II a fully electronic shutter while also having an "electronic first shutter?" Also, isn't there some limitation attached to EFS?

    8) What many other cases does 3:2 have an advantage over 4:3? Certainly available print paper sizes aren't one of them especially consumer selected sizes, neither are most publication or commercial printing formats. While one may have to crop either format, 4:3 requires far less in most applications ... effectively trashing more resolution from the 3:2 verses the 4:3. This was very apparent to me when I switched from Hasselblad H to the Leica S which is 3:2.

    9, 10) Specific C1 comments may well be valid, however, Hasselblad has excellent lens profiles in their software Phocus, and provided them to Adobe for use with PS/LR ... including profiles for older Zeiss lenses. Leica chose Adobe LR as their DNG software, and those profiles are very good. Same for capture profiles.

    IMO, other contemporary MFD advantages (as well as Nikon & Canon) include mature and consistant systems components when compared to the Sony A7R-II. I'm sure they will get there.

    In the final analysis I use my Leica S because of the high sync speed advantages, and I like the look of my S files from the S image chain better than anything I can get from my Sony A7R-II with any lens mounted to it. Not that they are bad in any way, just I prefer the S files every time. I've shot some stuff with the Sony only to wish I had shot it with the Leica. What can I say ... that's all folks!


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

    Very beautiful photography here. Thanks Gavin for sharing the link. That last night shot with the stars and church was simply spectacular. Great work.

    Jeffery
    Jeffery Salter
    www.jefferysalter.com

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

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    I've shot some stuff with the Sony only to wish I had shot it with the Leica. What can I say ... that's all folks!


    - Marc
    That pretty much sums up my experience with MF Digital vs my smaller format gear. I like what I get from my Sonys, and others before them, but I almost always end up wishing that I'd shot the images with my digital back.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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

    Hi,

    Regarding shutter modes of the A7rII there are three:

    1) Mechanical shutter, no limitations but has vibrations. Needs to be closed before exposure, inducing significant exposure lag.

    2) Electronic First Curtain. Not recommended for highest shutter speeds (like above 1/2000s) may not work with legacy lenses that don't stop down fast enough.

    3) Fully electronic shutter. Slow travel time but totally silent. Forces 12-bit mode.

    So Electronic First Curtain is mostly best option.

    I think you are a bit over agitated just because a few persons have different needs than yours. Please, just keep in mind that many photographers don't use flash at all. You would need a nuke to illuminate a landscape.

    Also a lot of shooting is done in ambient light. So for many users long exposure capability and great dynamic range matters more than capability for flash sync at 1/800.

    As I mentioned some well known MFD users switched from MFD to A7r. One of them, Rainer Viertlblöck was involved with development of the Sinar ArcTec, it was made for him, but he now uses the A7rII 95% of the time. His own words. I don't know why they switched, but good enough and more efficient workflow are words that have been mentioned.

    I think that anyone going into MFD should analyse their needs and select what is most appropriate for those needs taking economy into account. Doing that it is nice to be aware of the alternatives. Don't you think so?

    I am not so sure that MF automatically means a high end digital back. First time users may start with a camera like the Pentax 645Z, that has neither leaf shutter or a removable back or the Leica S that you mentioned that also doesn't have a removable back. So MFD doesn't automagically give you all the advantages you discuss. You need to choose between back or built in sensor. If you need LS you need to buy LS lenses.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    In my general experience, photographers select MFD for 5 reasons based on primary need 1) Resolution from larger meg backs for either reproduction/documentation, large printing, diverse cropping ability (frequent in commercial repurposing of images); 2) T/S work using a fully articulated studio camera with a hi res back; 3) High speed sync strobe use with any meg back (which is more prevalent than most here may think); 4) Some specialty applications like Multi-shot, and aerial or industrial cameras 5) subjective preference for the look and feel of MFD "system" output (complete image chain).

    Your remarks above are pretty comprehensive and presumably speaks to your specific needs. Like with any argument, it is skewed by damning with faint praise, while omitting the deficiencies of the favored opinion. Again, you seem to be comparing experiences with the latest 35mm tech to your older MFD tech.

    A few responses:

    1) Top sync speed with full strobe output on my Leica S is 1/1000 with no vignetting. It was 1/800th with my previous Hasselblad H. The Sony A7R-II is only 1/180 and the A7R-II doesn't even have a PC sync port to hard wire anything to it when shooting with a speed-light for fill.

    While higher sync has a clear advantage in controlling ambient, it isn't just "... in a lot of ambient" ... it is ANY ambient. I've used it to kill distracting backgrounds indoors for example, including indoor locations infected by ambient I have no control over other than higher sync speed... or to lessen mixed lighting effects in areas where the subject/background metering is in no-man's-land.

    The unmentioned additional high sync advantages are: ability to control unwanted motion in brighter backgrounds not effected by the subject lighting flash duration. 1/1000 shutter beats 1/180 all day long. I can also shoot @ 1/1000 with a wider open aperture with flash without blowing out a brighter background.

    3,4,5,6) A MF DSLR doesn't need to provide T/S ... the removable backs from Phase, Leaf, Sinar and Hasselblad do. Allowing you the choice of a wide variety of technical cameras ... I used a Rollie Xact-II for full front back movements in studio with a fixed back and a M/S back, could remove it and put it on a mobile ALPA type camera if I wanted, then back to SLR use.

    BTW, I also used Hasselblad's HT/S on my Leica S camera to excellent effect. The S electronically allows full function use of HC & HCD lenses and Contax 645 lenses including Contax's excellent T/S bellows unit. The disadvantage is the HT/S is the 1.5X magnification factor making the widest FOV 36mm (28mm in 35mm terms).

    All that said, were I in need of T/S today (I'm not) ... I'd go exactly the same route you did (or rent what I needed) because for me the call for it isn't that demanding anymore, and not worth the expense of owning a hi res MFD T/S solution or a 35mm one for that matter. BTW, Otis lenses would not be part of my mix since they are manual and negate the A7R-II advantage of advanced AF ... and are as big as many MFD lenses on a tiny body.

    7) Yes, the A7R-II virtually fixed the shutter slap issues of the A7R (or I would never have bought my A7R-II). How is the A7R-II a fully electronic shutter while also having an "electronic first shutter?" Also, isn't there some limitation attached to EFS?

    8) What many other cases does 3:2 have an advantage over 4:3? Certainly available print paper sizes aren't one of them especially consumer selected sizes, neither are most publication or commercial printing formats. While one may have to crop either format, 4:3 requires far less in most applications ... effectively trashing more resolution from the 3:2 verses the 4:3. This was very apparent to me when I switched from Hasselblad H to the Leica S which is 3:2.

    9, 10) Specific C1 comments may well be valid, however, Hasselblad has excellent lens profiles in their software Phocus, and provided them to Adobe for use with PS/LR ... including profiles for older Zeiss lenses. Leica chose Adobe LR as their DNG software, and those profiles are very good. Same for capture profiles.

    IMO, other contemporary MFD advantages (as well as Nikon & Canon) include mature and consistant systems components when compared to the Sony A7R-II. I'm sure they will get there.

    In the final analysis I use my Leica S because of the high sync speed advantages, and I like the look of my S files from the S image chain better than anything I can get from my Sony A7R-II with any lens mounted to it. Not that they are bad in any way, just I prefer the S files every time. I've shot some stuff with the Sony only to wish I had shot it with the Leica. What can I say ... that's all folks!


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

    erik, you can never win here with arguments mf is like homeopathy you must believe it otherwise you can not experience the miracle advantage
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    It is not about winning an argument. It is about sharing experience and presenting an alternate view. It may be a good thing to discuss the options? Information is always a good thing…

    Oh, by the way I seem to be pretty alone in sharing some raw images. I wish we would have seen more of that.

    The tests posted by Digital Transitions and Capture Integration were both informative and impressive, BTW.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Regarding shutter modes of the A7rII there are three:

    1) Mechanical shutter, no limitations but has vibrations. Needs to be closed before exposure, inducing significant exposure lag.

    2) Electronic First Curtain. Not recommended for highest shutter speeds (like above 1/2000s) may not work with legacy lenses that don't stop down fast enough.

    3) Fully electronic shutter. Slow travel time but totally silent. Forces 12-bit mode.

    So Electronic First Curtain is mostly best option.

    I think you are a bit over agitated just because a few persons have different needs than yours. Please, just keep in mind that many photographers don't use flash at all. You would need a nuke to illuminate a landscape.

    Also a lot of shooting is done in ambient light. So for many users long exposure capability and great dynamic range matters more than capability for flash sync at 1/800.

    As I mentioned some well known MFD users switched from MFD to A7r. One of them, Rainer Viertlblöck was involved with development of the Sinar ArcTec, it was made for him, but he now uses the A7rII 95% of the time. His own words. I don't know why they switched, but good enough and more efficient workflow are words that have been mentioned.

    I think that anyone going into MFD should analyse their needs and select what is most appropriate for those needs taking economy into account. Doing that it is nice to be aware of the alternatives. Don't you think so?

    I am not so sure that MF automatically means a high end digital back. First time users may start with a camera like the Pentax 645Z, that has neither leaf shutter or a removable back or the Leica S that you mentioned that also doesn't have a removable back. So MFD doesn't automagically give you all the advantages you discuss. You need to choose between back or built in sensor. If you need LS you need to buy LS lenses.

    Best regards
    Erik

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

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Regarding shutter modes of the A7rII there are three:

    1) Mechanical shutter, no limitations but has vibrations. Needs to be closed before exposure, inducing significant exposure lag.

    2) Electronic First Curtain. Not recommended for highest shutter speeds (like above 1/2000s) may not work with legacy lenses that don't stop down fast enough.

    3) Fully electronic shutter. Slow travel time but totally silent. Forces 12-bit mode.

    So Electronic First Curtain is mostly best option.

    I think you are a bit over agitated just because a few persons have different needs than yours. Please, just keep in mind that many photographers don't use flash at all. You would need a nuke to illuminate a landscape.

    Also a lot of shooting is done in ambient light. So for many users long exposure capability and great dynamic range matters more than capability for flash sync at 1/800.

    As I mentioned some well known MFD users switched from MFD to A7r. One of them, Rainer Viertlblöck was involved with development of the Sinar ArcTec, it was made for him, but he now uses the A7rII 95% of the time. His own words. I don't know why they switched, but good enough and more efficient workflow are words that have been mentioned.

    I think that anyone going into MFD should analyse their needs and select what is most appropriate for those needs taking economy into account. Doing that it is nice to be aware of the alternatives. Don't you think so?

    Best regards
    Erik
    Thanks for the A7R-II shutter Info ... isn't there a penalty for using EFS? Is the full electronic shutter the same a silent mode? I know there are limitations with that, which I discovered the hard way.


    The OP didn't ask what I thought about other people's needs Erik ... the question was why each of us MFD folks selected MFD and would we do it again. I've answered why, and YES I would do it again.

    I doubt anyone here is missing the advantages of alternatives ... most posts on GetDPI are Sony related these days, and before that Nikon D800.

    I fully recognize others have different needs and said so ... however, if you want to line list advantages competitively weighed to your POV and leave out some key info I'm happy to fill it in so there IS discussion of alternatives.

    The notion of Landscape photography being the criteria for measuring attributes is one that GetDPI has always tended to attract. There is a whole other world out there: fashion, product, table-top, portraiture, wedding, corporate, PR, etc., etc., all of which involve flash sooner or later ... so dismissing use of lighting as a good reason to need MFD is pretty narrow.

    As I said, High Sync is there when I need it and not there with the Sony ... and even if the S was just a focal plane shutter camera, I'd still opt for my S for the reason already mentioned.

    - Marc
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  12. #162
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    There are two downsides with EFSC as far as I know, the first is that it can have problems with adapted lenses having automatic aperture, not allowing time for the aperture to close. I have not seen this myself.

    The other downside is that exposure may vary across the image with short exposures. The electronic and mechanical shutters need to move in sync. So I don't think EFCS is recommended above 1/2000.

    I always use EFSC and never had a problem, but I am a base ISO and camera on tripod kind of guy. Lack of EFSC was the main reason I didn't buy the original A7r, my Sony Alpha 99 had it so I figured a new high MP model would come soon.

    I bought a used P45+ before the A7r came out, so I had 39 MP. My original plan was to get a technical camera previous summer. The HCam B1 was on my mind. The HCam B1 allows some shift with Hasselblad lenses and can use Canon T&S lenses with the P45+ and has a motorised sliding back, so I you can slide out the viewinder and slide in the back.

    When the Sony A7rII came around I realised that I could fill my T&S needs with that. So the "blad" went into (partial) retirement. The A7rII provides image quality on par with the P45+, so I am quite happy with it. Don't really think I need more pixels than what I have. So I see it as a relatively low cost and low weight alternative.

    I could have bought a Canon 5Ds or a Nikon D810 instead, but I am an old Sony/Minolta user and the Sony is really the only option that offers T&S with a a lot of lenses, including the Canon 16-35/4. They say that the Canon 11-24/4 offers plenty of shift on the Sony A7r, but I was stupid enough to buy the 24/3.5 TSE and the 16-35/4 (both Canon).

    As thing are now, the MFD era is over for me. The new CMOS backs are impressive, but far to expensive for my wallet and I really feel I need to scale down own equipment, not least for travel. Still stuff like the Alpa FPS is impressive stuff. Just no match for my needs and not for my wallet.

    Actually I am not an admirer of Sony. I regularly tell Canon users that their best option may be to stay with Canon and I feel that there are aspect of Sony that stinks, user interface and lens quality price ratio for instance. But it is pretty much the only game in town in 24x36 mm mirrorless except Leica M and Leica SL.

    On the other hand, Sony sensors are all over the place.

    Best regards
    Erik




    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Thanks for the A7R-II shutter Info ... isn't there a penalty for using EFS? Is the full electronic shutter the same a silent mode? I know there are limitations with that, which I discovered the hard way.


    The OP didn't ask what I thought about other people's needs Erik ... the question was why each of us MFD folks selected MFD and would we do it again. I've answered why, and YES I would do it again.

    I doubt anyone here is missing the advantages of alternatives ... most posts on GetDPI are Sony related these days, and before that Nikon D800.

    I fully recognize others have different needs and said so ... however, if you want to line list advantages competitively weighed to your POV and leave out some key info I'm happy to fill it in so there IS discussion of alternatives.

    The notion of Landscape photography being the criteria for measuring attributes is one that GetDPI has always tended to attract. There is a whole other world out there: fashion, product, table-top, portraiture, wedding, corporate, PR, etc., etc., all of which involve flash sooner or later ... so dismissing use of lighting as a good reason to need MFD is pretty narrow.

    As I said, High Sync is there when I need it and not there with the Sony ... and even if the S was just a focal plane shutter camera, I'd still opt for my S for the reason already mentioned.

    - Marc

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    Senior Member Lucille's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    my desire for Medium Format grows....

    I hate going to the medium format image thread, as I see incredible IQ which is what I want.

    I might have to rent a system or something, I sure want to give it a try.
    the HepKitty

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

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucille View Post
    my desire for Medium Format grows....

    I hate going to the medium format image thread, as I see incredible IQ which is what I want.

    I might have to rent a system or something, I sure want to give it a try.
    Check out the following thread. About half way down the first page, the guy provides the RAW files and you can take a look at them.

    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...canon+17mm+tse

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

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucille View Post
    my desire for Medium Format grows....

    I hate going to the medium format image thread, as I see incredible IQ which is what I want.

    I might have to rent a system or something, I sure want to give it a try.
    What do you want in MF - I probably own it and would sell it to you!! It is all gathering dust in my cupboards now...


    To answer the OP - it all depends on the subject matter AND end use size of printing and quality of printing you are after. I used to make very large prints so MF delivered the information that the printer needs to make large prints that - bigger sensor = more information captured and more ability for better processing of stuff that requires more information to do better....- which is easily seen in large print size.

    How much information do you need?

    For me the sweet point was 30-45 megapixels - today you can buy 80 and even 100 megapixels- I never needed the information that the elephant gun 80+ megapixel backs deliver - so I never bought one. Of course it isn't just about how much information the back can deliver - it is also about how much information the lenses you use are capable of delivering to the back to capture and then give to you to do stuff with. High resolution lenses for LF/MF on a tech camera- cost a lot of money relative to 35mm lenses.

    If you know what you are doing and you know what you want to make pictures of and this subject matter requires more information not less - then enter the high resolution back game - but if you don't match your complete chain of workflow to the capabilities of his stuff - forget about it. if your subject matter and information size needs do not require large - then don't. if you can't see the difference on a monitor- don't be surprised - I can't either. If you can't see the difference in a large print - consult your optometrist.

    Finally - a person's interest in photography changes over time - or at least mine has. I no longer am interested in making photographs of 'stuff' or print large images of 'stuff' - because I've been there and done that - and I will get my backside into gear one day and sell off 4-5 MF camera systems and lenses and paraphernalia and tech camera gear that is no longer such an important part of my life.

    What do I shoot with now - a Leica MM and old M9 with far too many lenses acquired over the years- what do I shoot? Pictures of my family/friends/holidays and hobby time pursuit in my home workshop - all this subject matter will always be important and more than covered by the sub 20 megapixel engine in these boxes -I wish my apple Iphone could do as good a job - but it doesn't and so I am resigned to keeping the Leica gear for now.

    Really - if I was starting shooting now with the subject matter I am interested in - I think pretty much any modern camera from any manufacturer matched to any lens(es) will do a great job - and if you get rid of the embedded metamatter that comes with posted Jpegs on monitors which forum people use - then no one can tell the difference - unless they use the 100/200/300 times pixel peeping button - which is the equivalent of going to a gallery and bringing your microscope with you to view a photograph or a painting...

    Pleasse dont talk abotu money V value ...that woudl be the last thing of interest to a dedicated hobbyist or passionate end user wantoing more than needing cares about.
    Cheers
    Pete
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    But are raw files what we need to compare dissimilar cameras?

    I mean: I see the appeal. Raw is supposed to be the original sensor data, so one would dispense from processing. Except that processing and lenses are essential to the complete MF "package".

    I'll take an example. I own a Sony RX1 and an Hasselblad H4D-50. The two cameras happen to have the same pixel size (6µm). The RX1 also has a very good lens.

    If I want to compare raw files from the two cameras, I first need to find some software capable to digest the two files in parallel. I also needs to find some software without hidden built-in noise reduction. That already limits me to software I do not normally use, like dcraw. When comparing the two files at the pixel level, I then find that the appearance is quite similar, with the older H4D having a bit more noise and hot pixels. On highlights the two give quite similar results, when the exposure is the same. No big surprise here: the pixels have the same size, I am just comparing the older CCD technology with a newer CMOS.

    The apparent sharpness is the same at the pixel level on fine details at the center of the picture, with the lens stopped down around f/5.6-f/8. That should also not be a surprise: either lens outresolves the sensor under these conditions.

    So, basically, on raw files the two cameras appear equivalent with a large advantage for the RX1 on higher iso and noise.

    In my normal photography practice, however, I am not doing that. When using the RX1 my biggest problem (for some pictures) is the distortion of the lens, which I can't correct perfectly (unless using the built-in jpegs). I also often tend to use the RX1 wide open, then the lens gives a very nice 3-D "pop" effect, but the corners may be a tiny bit fuzzy on some subjects (not a real problem unless one shoots test charts). More annoying is that the lens has a bit of spherochromatism, out of focus areas may exhibit some color fringing.

    When using the H4D, I process the files with Phocus (from the manufacturer). I don't have to concern myself with distortion, it is automatically corrected. Using the HC50-II, which is equivalent to a 35mm in 24x36, I never get any color fringing (but the lens is much slower). If I were to shoot test charts (I tried), the lens is always sharp corner to corner. The rendering of the lens is also different, with less of a "pop" effect, but very smooth transitions at f/4-f/5.6. The colors out of Phocus are very different to what I get from the RX1 (at least in the default mode), with a palette that reminds me of film. Also: the camera does not have an automatic white balance.

    If I compare prints, either camera gives good results, but I can immediately tell which is which. The output of the RX1 looks like a (very good) photograph, the output of the H4D appears more life-like. The RX1 is good for prints up to 18"x24" (A2), the H4D is extraordinary at 24"x34" (A1) or even a bit bigger.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Pleasse dont talk abotu money V value ...that woudl be the last thing of interest to a dedicated hobbyist or passionate end user wantoing more than needing cares about.
    Cheers
    But it's an important factor to a photography business and there are a few on here who are running photography businesses.
    The money/value thing reminds me of a phrase

    'Cost is only a factor in the absence of value'.

    This resonates with me on 2 levels. One is the buying of tools for the business so if something doesn't really add value it doesn't get purchased. (Much like a £20k mfd system)
    Also it applies to what I produce and how new clients react to the costs of bespoke imagery of high quality. Thankfully I haven't yet had to use it in conversation when being told 'Johnny in accounts has a nice camera and will do it for free'
    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 CSP View Post
    erik, you can never win here with arguments mf is like homeopathy you must believe it otherwise you can not experience the miracle advantage
    ... and vise-versa

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

    I guess the answer to the OP's original question: "Is there a compelling reason to move to MFD?", depends on whether you have a compelling need that MFD solves. If not, then there's the answer.

    Do you use lighting in highly varied or difficult situations , especially professionally? The difference may be between a landscape photographer, and an environmental portrait photographer that uses landscapes for example.

    Do you make very large reproductions, or are your images cropped severely for artistic or commercial reasons?

    Do you honestly see a difference in image characteristics? (more realistic, more organic, or any of the descriptors other people have mentioned in this thread?).


    Personally, I know very accomplished photographers I admire that use Canon 5Ds and would not benefit from any change ... even including Canon's latest 50 meg version.

    My own creative output is split between a 18 meg Leica MM which is a continuation of a long time rangefinder B&W exploration of "The human condition" ... when I use this camera it's supplemented by a cell phone for typical snapshots uploaded to the web or sent via text messages.

    Most professional jobs and important personal work is done with the Leica S because I am one who sees a difference as well as use lighting.

    The A7R-II is back-up and used for faster work like weddings, and higher ISO needs or with special lenses.

    - Marc

  20. #170
    Senior Member Jamgolf's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    If we are window shopping and enter a store, we enter with an open mind. We browse, ask questions and perhaps even try a few things. If we don’t like the merchandise, or if the items don’t fit us or our needs we say thank you to the store owner, maybe exchange some pleasantries then leave respectfully.

    Is it so difficult to understand that everyone’s needs, desires and choices are different.
    Last edited by Jamgolf; 20th March 2016 at 09:17.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Sometimes the Berger & Wyse cartoon in the Weekend Guardian can seem appropriate....
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    Check out the following thread. About half way down the first page, the guy provides the RAW files and you can take a look at them.

    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...canon+17mm+tse
    No, I need to see my shots and my raws using medium format.
    the HepKitty
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterA View Post
    What do you want in MF - I probably own it and would sell it to you!! It is all gathering dust in my cupboards now...



    Pete


    I want pure HORSEPOWER! Pure IQ. I'll do things with medium format that most probably wouldn't. Just to see the step up in IQ and further create a 'look' to my images.
    the HepKitty
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by jerome_m View Post
    But are raw files what we need to compare dissimilar cameras?

    I mean: I see the appeal. Raw is supposed to be the original sensor data, so one would dispense from processing. Except that processing and lenses are essential to the complete MF "package".
    If you take a look at the link, they took the same scene with the same lens. It's an interesting discussion.

  25. #175
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    I have posted a comparison between my Hasselblad V / P45+ combo with my Sony A7rII, using the Planar 100/3.5 and the Planar 120/4 on the "blad" and the Sony 90/2.8G macro on the A7rII.

    Regarding colour, I did not shoot a WB card, unfortunately.

    Crops of the two images are here: Some comparisons between my Sony Alpha A7rII and my Hasselblad V and P45+ back

    The raw images are here: http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/Ar...P45+_vs_a7rII/

    Now, I am processing my images in Lightroom and not C1 using my own colour profiles or some profiles I got from Anders Torger. I own the 7 and 8 versions of Capture One Pro, but it simply doesn't work for me.

    Since the original comparison I have also added one wide angle test using my Canon 16-35/4 on the A7rII and Distagon 40/4 on the Hasselblad.

    Hasselblad/Distagon/P45+ - center crop:


    Sony A7rII/Canon 16-35/4 - center crop:



    Distagon/P45+: - border crop


    Sony A7rII/Canon 16-35/4 - border crop:


    Now, the Distagon 40/4 CF is not a great lens, as shown by the MTF curves from Zeiss below. The border image is probably at around 20 mm of axis. There is a later generation lens called Distagon 40/CFE IF. That lens is much improved, but both rare and costly (around 4000$US on Ebay).
    Click image for larger version. 

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    While the Planar 100/3.5 CF is one of Hasselblad's better lenses:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Yes, I am aware that I am comparing new stuff to old stuff. On the other hand, Hasselblad are selling all the CFV-50c backs they can make according to their new CEO, in an interview with Kevin Raber. So Hasselblad is selling a lot of those backs, right now, and those backs are a bit more demanding than my P45+ as they have both higher resolution and larger crop factor.

    Naturally, a higher resolution back with better lenses would outperform both my Hasselblad/P45+ and my Sony A7rII, but at several times the cost. I checked prices here in Sweden, and for the price of an IQ-150 I could buy the A7rII, all three Otus lenses and both Canon T&S wide angles.

    Best regards
    Erik






    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    If you take a look at the link, they took the same scene with the same lens. It's an interesting discussion.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 20th March 2016 at 22:31.

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

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    If you take a look at the link, they took the same scene with the same lens. It's an interesting discussion.
    You are referring to that link:http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...-res-a7r2.html.

    I think the tests are illustrative of the problems I was thinking about. In that thread, we have a first test of an artificial rose over a stone statue. The poster finds out that the camera with more pixels has higher resolution. I fail to see how that would be surprising. However, and that is more interesting about test design, the tester chose the absolute best lens in E mount, an aperture where all lenses are at their best and only looks at the center. And that is what I find a problem with 24x36: sure one can have stellar results, but one is limited to a small selection of lenses and apertures and, often, not look too closely out of the center zone. Unfortunately, I take photographs and I often need a focal length which does not exist in Zeiss Otus. Then I am limited to 24x36 lenses which show defects, sometimes quite obvious.

    Interestingly, nobody in this thread noted that the colors of the (artificial) leaves is quite different.

    Then, in the same thread, there is an image of a building taken with the Canon 17mm TSE. While the test is informative to someone who wonders about color shifts or vignetting of the 17mm TSE on the two sensors, I fail to see how the test would allow us to compare the cameras.

    Last but not least, we have Erik Kaffer who posted comparisons between an A7RII and a P45+. We learn that crops of the P45+ can be quite similar to the A7RII. We also learn that the Distagon 40/4 has poor corner sharpness. We already knew that from the MTF curves.

  27. #177
    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post

    Now, I am processing my images in Lightroom and not C1 using my own colour profiles or some profiles I got from Anders Torger. I own the 7 and 8 versions of Capture One Pro, but it simply doesn't work for me.

    Erik
    I respect the work you put into the comparisons but to paraphrase Lau Norgaard of Phase One (and emphasized one-one with me at a recent event), the only authentic representation of Phase One quality is from Capture One as the back and C1 are a matched combination that is designed to produce the very best image quality possible from Phase One files. If you use other converters whether they be DCRaw, your own processor, Adobe Raw etc you will never create the images that Phase One stand behind.

    Whilst I understand that C1 Pro may not be your preferred raw processor, it is the highly optimized processor for all Phase One backs and it has only gotten better and better with C1 Pro v9.1.

    Compare the best of the Sony and Phase One files from C1 Pro (which is the preferred and optimized processor for both manufacturers) and I think that we'd better appreciate the big vs small sensor capabilities.

    I'm sure that you'll appreciate that a lot of engineering has gone into ensuring that the manufacturer's preferred raw processor will produce the best results for comparison.

    Given that, I'll be first to admit that on pixel peeping level the differences between my Sony and Phase One back is very very very close. But, as others have stated, print BIG and suddenly the differences in subtle color and tonality come through. I can't put my finger objectively on why but I'll trust Phase One's Image Professor Niels Knudsen over anyone else.


    btw, I recommend reading the The Image Quality Professor's Blog » Blog Archive Capture One 9: Under the Hood - The Image Quality Professor's Blog
    Last edited by GrahamWelland; 21st March 2016 at 00:03.
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  28. #178
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Hi,

    Yes, the weak border (not corner) peformance of the Distagon can be predicted from the MTF curves, still many photographers feel MTF curves are not very relevant. I do not belong to those, but showing the difference in real world images may be interesting.

    One small point is price. The Canon 16-35/4 I used is still quite a bit cheaper than 20 year old Distagon I bought at EBay and the new IF version sells at around 4000 $US on EBay.

    Newer lenses are better, let's check the Hasselblad HC 35/3.5:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The Otus 28/1.4 on the other hand is really great:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here in Sweden both cost around 44000 SEK around 5000$US.

    But, for the A7rII Zeiss also offers the Batis 25/2.0, that is pretty good, looking at Zeiss and Hasselblad lenses is nice because they post similar MTF data.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I would guess that a 40+ MP 24x36mm camera using either the OTUS 28/1.4 or the Batis 25/2 would outperform a 40-50MP Hasselblad using the HC 35/3.5 except for the sweet spot of the lenses, based on the MTF data. With the Batis 25/2 you could probably buy the A7rII and the lens at about the same price you pay for the HC 35/3.5.

    Some buyers don't care about money, but quite a few actually do…

    Anyway, my finding is that my MFD stuff goes into retirement. To begin with, I find that once you start spending of MFD you are going to spend a lot.

    The other thing is that weight is a major factor as I am flying more than before. With the 24x36mm stuff I can have a very functional equipment in my Kiboko Bataflae and still be within the 10 kg weight limits on many flights.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by jerome_m View Post
    You are referring to that link:http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...-res-a7r2.html.

    Last but not least, we have Erik Kaffer who posted comparisons between an A7RII and a P45+. We learn that crops of the P45+ can be quite similar to the A7RII. We also learn that the Distagon 40/4 has poor corner sharpness. We already knew that from the MTF curves.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 21st March 2016 at 00:14.

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

    Hi,

    I don't own the Pentax 645Z, so I cannot tell.

    What I can say is that Diglloyd did some comparisons between the Sony A7r (not that A7rII) and the Pentax 645Z and found no case where the Pentax 645 was superior. That comparison was done with the Zeiss Distagon 21/2.8 on the Sony. (*)

    Update: Diglloyd compared the Zeiss Distagon 21/2.8 on the Sony with the Pentax 25/4 on the Pentax 645Z.

    The MFD I have is a Hasselblad 555/ELD with 40/60/100/120 and 180 mm lenses combined with the P45+ back. With Sony I presently use Canon 16-35/4L, Canon 24-105/4L, Canon 24/3.5 TSE LII, Sony 90/2.8G Macro and Sony 70-400/4-5.6G.

    I feel that Canon 24-35/4L beats the Distagons and the Sony 90/2.8 G may beat the Planars (100/3.5 and 120/4 Macro).

    My understanding is that some Pentax lenses are really good. I can mention that I also have a bunch of Pentax 67 lenses, and I am pretty sure that the Pentax 67 45/4 is better than the Zeiss Distagon 40/4, at least off axis.

    Best regards
    Erik

    (*) But I don't see Diglloyds testing as a gospel. I have seen a lot of very good image samples from the Pentax 645Z.

    Quote Originally Posted by gavincato View Post
    abstraction - the reason people got annoyed with you is that despite your claims that you are just researching, you are clearly looking for people to say what you want to hear.

    erik - I'm using a 645z so I fit into your sceptic bracket tell me, honestly do you think a a7r2 would compete with a 645z with a good lens. When I compared the 645z to a 5dsr the MF files were so superior the difference was striking. I'm sure in a studio the canon would do ok - but when we tested them outdoors the MF files smoked the canon.

    Have a look at these shots last week I took. Please note I'm not a landscape guy, just a wedding photographer who went on a hike in new zealand with a 645z and a few lenses. All handheld. The good ones are the mountain shots roughly halfway down. These are the new 35/3.5 at f10'ish.

    Happy Snaps from NZ! | Wollongong, Illawarra, Southern Highlands, Sydney & Destination wedding photography

    exif info is intact (the couple with no info are the Blad 110/2). the ones with the 35mm - the full size raws are just so much sharper & detailed than anything i've seen from any 35 system. i'm just baffled that anyone could be skeptical there isn't much or any advantage in terms of pure IQ.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 21st March 2016 at 12:46. Reason: Updated info

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

    Erik, I have a lot of sympathy for your argument based on what you shoot and how you work. I travel a fair amount and when by air I usually take the A7R & A7R-II. When by vehicle I take the S system and the A7R-II with a 24-70/2.8 zoom as back-up.

    Other thoughts:

    The CFV has been a good product for Hasselblad because there are so many 500 and 200 camera lovers out there. Up until a few years ago I was one of them. Like many, I had slowly built Hasselblad V kit over the years and put it to good use. At the time I was shooting both film for personal work (scanned on a 949), and a CFV-16 for commercial work. I did have the 40IF which was free with a promotional package. In addition to a 503CW, I used a 203FE to access the Zeiss FE lenses like the FE-110/2 and FE-150/2.8 for portrait and creative work. The general impression I had was that the results had a look and feel (character), contrast, and color rendering unmatched by anything at the time. That was NOT just a metric evaluation as much as a creative one. However, the key aspect was that I LOVED working with the V camera ... and I miss that experience to this day.

    As such, the value proposition for V system owners is the cost of the CFV back (new CFV50c @ $10K, or used CFV50ccd for less) So, cheaper than a Sony A7R-II and the top lenses necessary to compete with the V kit (if it actually could compete, which I doubt). In the switch over they'd lose the kit they already like using for a kit that lacks all the tactile, and simple operational elements of the V. We cannot dismiss that out of hand.

    When it comes to comparing systems, one also cannot utilize knowledge of a system and cherry pick the comparisons. I would not compare the HC35/3.5 which is the one lens in the HC/HCD series in dire need of up-dating, instead I'd opt for the HC50/3.5-II which produces stunning results on any H camera or S camera via the H to S adapter, or Hasselblad's W/A zoom.

    The H kit is a wonder of operational value IMO. You can get a new H5D/40 for $8K right now! 40 meg with a larger sensor than the Sony. This kit offers 4:3 ratio, improved True Focus APL that over-rides the need for AF point array to allow off-center focusing. It is faster than wheeling to a focus point on the A7s. True focus also refers to minute automatic adjustments to correct any focus shift when changing apertures. Plus, I've used the mirror delay feature to hand-hold at slower shutter speeds. Things like this come from a more consistent and intimate knowledge of a system that often goes unmentioned.

    Comparison shots are very hard to accomplish IMO.

    When doing pure comparisons I try to keep as few variables as possible. Doing outdoor comparisons is too hard IMO. I usually do these indoors with Profoto lighting which is a constant, as close as I can get with the focal lengths, equivalent apertures, subject matter, locked down tripod. I shoot with strobes stopped down, and with just modeling lights with wider apertures ... using a grey card for custom WB on both cameras. Since I shoot product and people I try to test both.

    I have NOT done this between the Leica S and the recently purchased Sony A7R-II because I haven't had the time, and I'm waiting to secure the Batis FE lenses on back order. I could compare the FE55/1.8 verses the CS -70/2.5 but the S lenses in in for service. Another interesting comparison would be the FE90/2.8 Macro verses my CS120/2.5 but I don't have the 90 and doubt I ever will. One other comparison I'd like to do is the Leica 75/2 APO/ASPH on the A7R-II against the S 100/2.

    I've shot these two cameras side-by-side for paying work (mostly people stuff and table-top product) which is the source of my preference for the S system output. I can pick-out the S shots every time, they have a presence lacking from the Sony.

    Still, it would be an interesting exercise to compare these two in highly controlled circumstances since they're both in the 40 meg arena and both are 3:2.

    When I get the time. I'll try it ... However, don't hold your breath. I'm traveling the next month ... with the Sony's BTW ...

    - Marc

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

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Yes, the weak border (not corner) peformance of the Distagon can be predicted from the MTF curves, still many photographers feel MTF curves are not very relevant. I do not belong to those, but showing the difference in real world images may be interesting.
    That is where the misunderstanding lies. Photographers, as a rules, do not find that MTF curves are not relevant. They argue that a simple MTF curve does not tell the whole story. And the optical engineer would agree on that: if you have ever seen the output of a ray tracing program for optics, you will know that it outputs much, much more data than the simple MTF thrown in as a sales pitch.

    The simple MTF curve is useful in the following photographic cases:
    • landscape, for the published apertures (it tells you what aperture to use)
    • architecture, for the published aperture and shift (it tells you aperture and shift to be used)
    • document reproduction, when there is a published MTF closer than infinite distance


    It is of little use for portrait and, generally, reproduction of tridimensional subjects. Moreover, it only tells you about sharpness and there is more to photography than getting a sharp picture.

    Case in point: the HC-35, for which you cited the MTF. The lens is indeed not that sharp off center, as the MTF shows. But it has beautiful rendering and bokeh and, if you need sharpness (e.g. for landscape), it is quite sharp at f/8 over the whole frame. It is an underrated lens.

    I would guess that a 40+ MP 24x36mm camera using either the OTUS 28/1.4 or the Batis 25/2 would outperform a 40-50MP Hasselblad using the HC 35/3.5 except for the sweet spot of the lenses, based on the MTF data.
    I have not tried the Batis 25/2, but I have my eyes on it. Still: I do not expect it to outperform my HC-35, I expect it to give a different rendering. Why? Because I know that, as a rule, Zeiss lenses have a specific rendering. I also own the Sony-Zeiss 24/2 in A-mount and it is a very good lens, but quite different than the HC-35.

    With the Batis 25/2 you could probably buy the A7rII and the lens at about the same price you pay for the HC 35/3.5. Some buyers don't care about money, but quite a few actually do…
    I do care about money. I am waiting for the A7RII to drop in price before jumping in. The A7R went from €3000 to €1700, I am expecting the A7RII to drop in price significantly eventually.
    The HC-35 can easily be bought used in great shape for half of what the A7RII costs, BTW.

    The other thing is that weight is a major factor as I am flying more than before. With the 24x36mm stuff I can have a very functional equipment in my Kiboko Bataflae and still be within the 10 kg weight limits on many flights.
    If I needed a full collection of lenses, I would not fly with the Hasselblad. But, since I can often limit myself to one or two lenses, I have no difficulty staying under the 10 Kg limit.

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

    Hi Marc,

    Thanks for good comments. Here are some comment of my own:

    Regarding Hasselblad pricing, I am happy that prices are reasonable. I have checked pricing this morning here in Sweden it was more like in the 120 k$US range, including sales tax. That is the price I would pay as an amateur.

    The reason I have looked at the Hasselblad HC 35/3.5 was that it was the closest equivalent to the 40/4 I have tested, especially if crop factor has been taken into account. I have checked out the HC 50, and you are right, it is a much better lens. On the other hand it is no really wide wide angle either.

    I don't really think that Otus lenses are needed to match MF lenses. With the Otus a tremendous effort goes into eliminating axial chromatic aberration at large apertures. If you check the tests published by Digital Transitions you can see that the Schneider lens they have used has a very generous amount axial chroma. So does the Sony 55/1.8. Otus would have none of that…

    Zeiss has redesigned the 50/1.4 ZF for the Milvus series with a design quite similar to the Otus and the MTF data for that lens is very similar to the Otus, I guess that it may have some axial chroma. What I really wanted was an 85/2.0 with very good correction and the Batis would have been a perfect match. Some early tests at Lensrentals and DxO-mark gave incredibly good results for the new Sony 90/2.8G, so I went with that lens. Now, I know that the Batis may have been a better choice. The Batis is sharper, but the Sony has actually less axial chroma. Keeping axial chroma to minimum was a key issue for me.

    Jim Kasson has done a lot of testing on short telephotos and found some oddities with the Batis 85/1.9, foremost that it auto focuses on red, instead of green. No explanation found.

    Regarding the Zeiss line my understanding is that the Milvus 21/2.8, 50/1.4, 85/1.4 lenses are first rate and so are the Otuses and the 135/2 APO. The 100/2 Macro Planar is also excellent except for the axial chroma. All the Batis lenses seem to be performing very well, too.

    Personally, I went with Canon lenses for some specific reasons. The Canon 16-35/4 is really impressive and I am pretty sure that they outperform all Distagons I had.

    Testing outdoors contra studio is an interesting question. Studio subjects tend not have a lot of in focus detail in the corners. Also most lenses need at least 50 times focal length for correct testing and that means that very large test targets are needed. I do some MTF testing near axis and that tends to be consistent with my findings.

    So, what I have seen this far is that my zoom lenses keep up well with the old Zeiss primes on the V-system.

    What I may add is that I am very glad that Hasselblad is selling VFC backs at reasonable prices. As Perry Oosten said, there are something like 500000 V-series cameras out there. I have always felt a lot of frustration not having a digital option for my Pentax 67 lenses.

    Principally, I think that it is a good thing to share experience. My experience is a bit that the P45+ performs pretty much to "paper form", essentially performs as I would expect based on MTF data for the lenses and spec sheets on the sensor, also consistent with DxO data.

    One other thing is that I like shooting with the Hasselblad. Shooting with the Sony is more about doing the right things, but the way I shoot, I am very happy with the images coming out of that camera.

    Best regards
    Erik




    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Erik, I have a lot of sympathy for your argument based on what you shoot and how you work. I travel a fair amount and when by air I usually take the A7R & A7R-II. When by vehicle I take the S system and the A7R-II with a 24-70/2.8 zoom as back-up.

    Other thoughts:

    The CFV has been a good product for Hasselblad because there are so many 500 and 200 camera lovers out there. Up until a few years ago I was one of them. Like many, I had slowly built Hasselblad V kit over the years and put it to good use. At the time I was shooting both film for personal work (scanned on a 949), and a CFV-16 for commercial work. I did have the 40IF which was free with a promotional package. In addition to a 503CW, I used a 203FE to access the Zeiss FE lenses like the FE-110/2 and FE-150/2.8 for portrait and creative work. The general impression I had was that the results had a look and feel (character), contrast, and color rendering unmatched by anything at the time. That was NOT just a metric evaluation as much as a creative one. However, the key aspect was that I LOVED working with the V camera ... and I miss that experience to this day.

    As such, the value proposition for V system owners is the cost of the CFV back (new CFV50c @ $10K, or used CFV50ccd for less) So, cheaper than a Sony A7R-II and the top lenses necessary to compete with the V kit (if it actually could compete, which I doubt). In the switch over they'd lose the kit they already like using for a kit that lacks all the tactile, and simple operational elements of the V. We cannot dismiss that out of hand.

    When it comes to comparing systems, one also cannot utilize knowledge of a system and cherry pick the comparisons. I would not compare the HC35/3.5 which is the one lens in the HC/HCD series in dire need of up-dating, instead I'd opt for the HC50/3.5-II which produces stunning results on any H camera or S camera via the H to S adapter, or Hasselblad's W/A zoom.

    The H kit is a wonder of operational value IMO. You can get a new H5D/40 for $8K right now! 40 meg with a larger sensor than the Sony. This kit offers 4:3 ratio, improved True Focus APL that over-rides the need for AF point array to allow off-center focusing. It is faster than wheeling to a focus point on the A7s. True focus also refers to minute automatic adjustments to correct any focus shift when changing apertures. Plus, I've used the mirror delay feature to hand-hold at slower shutter speeds. Things like this come from a more consistent and intimate knowledge of a system that often goes unmentioned.

    Comparison shots are very hard to accomplish IMO.

    When doing pure comparisons I try to keep as few variables as possible. Doing outdoor comparisons is too hard IMO. I usually do these indoors with Profoto lighting which is a constant, as close as I can get with the focal lengths, equivalent apertures, subject matter, locked down tripod. I shoot with strobes stopped down, and with just modeling lights with wider apertures ... using a grey card for custom WB on both cameras. Since I shoot product and people I try to test both.

    I have NOT done this between the Leica S and the recently purchased Sony A7R-II because I haven't had the time, and I'm waiting to secure the Batis FE lenses on back order. I could compare the FE55/1.8 verses the CS -70/2.5 but the S lenses in in for service. Another interesting comparison would be the FE90/2.8 Macro verses my CS120/2.5 but I don't have the 90 and doubt I ever will. One other comparison I'd like to do is the Leica 75/2 APO/ASPH on the A7R-II against the S 100/2.

    I've shot these two cameras side-by-side for paying work (mostly people stuff and table-top product) which is the source of my preference for the S system output. I can pick-out the S shots every time, they have a presence lacking from the Sony.

    Still, it would be an interesting exercise to compare these two in highly controlled circumstances since they're both in the 40 meg arena and both are 3:2.

    When I get the time. I'll try it ... However, don't hold your breath. I'm traveling the next month ... with the Sony's BTW ...

    - Marc

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

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    showing the difference in real world images may be interesting.
    I should also add: I am grateful and thank you for the material you posted on your site. Even if I sometimes disagree on your test setup, it is nice and useful to show real word images taken in comparable conditions between different cameras.

    I actually published some comparisons pictures myself on lula at some points, for example here, here or here.

    Beware for non-members: one cannot see the test pictures without registering and new registrations are not possible without a subscription.

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

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    With the Otus a tremendous effort goes into eliminating axial chromatic aberration at large apertures. If you check the tests published by Digital Transitions you can see that the Schneider lens they have used has a very generous amount axial chroma. So does the Sony 55/1.8. Otus would have none of that…
    Now, that is an important difference between MF and 24x36. Axial chromatic aberration responds to aperture. So, for a given apparent depth of field, axial chromatic aberration will be smaller with a larger sensor. This is part of the explanation for the different rendering of the in-focus to out-of-focus transitions in MF.

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

    Hi,

    Just to say, I am pretty much aware of the fact that a large amount of MTF data is needed to characterise a lens. The reason I discussed MTF data is in part that you suggested that my testing were consistent with Zeiss MTF data.

    I am no optical engineer, but I have significant interest in optics and I am a bit familiars with output from optical calculations. But, I don't think we have more data than vendors provide us with.

    Also, optical experts are still holding MTF data quite relevant. You have probably read the two articles on interpreting MTF data by Hubert Nasse?

    https://www.zeiss.com/content/dam/Ph...ial_mtf_01.pdf
    http://www.zeiss.com/content/dam/Pho...ial_mtf_02.pdf

    Absolutely, MTF data says very little about out of focus rendition and a lot of other things. Personally, I am a bit over sensitive to axial chromatic aberration and that is not visible in MTF data at optimum focus.

    But, we cannot buy all lenses and do proper tests. Reading independent tests is a good way to make educated choices. Not saying good choices, just educated ones.

    Regarding weight limits, it seems that I need a bit more of stuff than you. Different needs and different priorities. My standard kit is 16-35/4, 24/3.5 TSE LII, 24-105/4L (right now), Sony 90/2.8G, Sony 70-400/4-5.6G, HCam Master TSII in addition to the A7rII. I don't think I would travel with less on a photo trip. I actually also feel I need a backup body.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by jerome_m View Post
    That is where the misunderstanding lies. Photographers, as a rules, do not find that MTF curves are not relevant. They argue that a simple MTF curve does not tell the whole story. And the optical engineer would agree on that: if you have ever seen the output of a ray tracing program for optics, you will know that it outputs much, much more data than the simple MTF thrown in as a sales pitch.

    The simple MTF curve is useful in the following photographic cases:
    • landscape, for the published apertures (it tells you what aperture to use)
    • architecture, for the published aperture and shift (it tells you aperture and shift to be used)
    • document reproduction, when there is a published MTF closer than infinite distance


    It is of little use for portrait and, generally, reproduction of tridimensional subjects. Moreover, it only tells you about sharpness and there is more to photography than getting a sharp picture.

    Case in point: the HC-35, for which you cited the MTF. The lens is indeed not that sharp off center, as the MTF shows. But it has beautiful rendering and bokeh and, if you need sharpness (e.g. for landscape), it is quite sharp at f/8 over the whole frame. It is an underrated lens.



    I have not tried the Batis 25/2, but I have my eyes on it. Still: I do not expect it to outperform my HC-35, I expect it to give a different rendering. Why? Because I know that, as a rule, Zeiss lenses have a specific rendering. I also own the Sony-Zeiss 24/2 in A-mount and it is a very good lens, but quite different than the HC-35.



    I do care about money. I am waiting for the A7RII to drop in price before jumping in. The A7R went from €3000 to €1700, I am expecting the A7RII to drop in price significantly eventually.
    The HC-35 can easily be bought used in great shape for half of what the A7RII costs, BTW.



    If I needed a full collection of lenses, I would not fly with the Hasselblad. But, since I can often limit myself to one or two lenses, I have no difficulty staying under the 10 Kg limit.

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

    Very interesting thread.
    I was a little shocked by the statement someone made not to bother if you're not going 60mp or more.
    I have a P45 (non-plus) on a tech cam which is laborious to use.

    I have scrutinised A7rII files and yes they can be massaged outside the realms of reality.
    The A7rII (42mp) should offer more resolution than my P45 (39mp) but it simply does not.
    Maybe it is due to sensor size, maybe it is due to lenses but the acuity, sharpness, metamerism and tonal transitions are leagues apart.
    One thing you can get on tech cams you cannot on 35mm is apochromatic wide angles.
    I've become so used to seeing no CA in any situation ever since moving to a tech cam that it stands out like the proverbial dog's balls to me every time I see it in print or online. It smacks of cheapness even though the kit used could very well have cost as much as my MF tech cam kit.
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by thrice View Post
    Very interesting thread.
    I was a little shocked by the statement someone made not to bother if you're not going 60mp or more.
    I have a P45 (non-plus) on a tech cam which is laborious to use.

    I have scrutinised A7rII files and yes they can be massaged outside the realms of reality.
    The A7rII (42mp) should offer more resolution than my P45 (39mp) but it simply does not.
    Maybe it is due to sensor size, maybe it is due to lenses but the acuity, sharpness, metamerism and tonal transitions are leagues apart.
    It's when I see proclamations like these "...acuity, sharpness, tonal transitions are LEAGUES APART" that I feel as though I'm missing out on something because frankly, I don't see it. Sometimes, I see subtle differences where MF is better, sometimes I don't. However, from what I see, whereas I can't say that the Emperor has no clothes, he may just be wearing a thong.

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

    There is a P45 sat in the studio, a Hblad and a load of zeiss lenses that I could use to shoot still-life but it sits unused because a Sony/Actus/Schneider combo makes it redundant, there's no compelling reason for me to use it as the files are just not as good to work with. The lenses are a big part of that equation.
    Like you I have got used to not seeing any C/A and having sharpness right across the frame. That's something that is not exclusive to MFD especially when a lot of lenses are now essentially 'cross platform'

    What works for some people might not be a viable proposition for others (on the rare occasion I need a decent wide angle I make do with a canon TS-e)
    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?

    Hi,

    I am pretty sure that the Otus 28/1.4 is fully apochromatic. Colour correction on the Zeiss Distagon 21/2.8 is said to be excellent.

    Yes, I would think that technical cameras are excellent. But I don't think this thread is about moving to technical cameras but more generally about moving from 24x36 mm to MFD.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by thrice View Post
    Very interesting thread.
    I was a little shocked by the statement someone made not to bother if you're not going 60mp or more.
    I have a P45 (non-plus) on a tech cam which is laborious to use.

    I have scrutinised A7rII files and yes they can be massaged outside the realms of reality.
    The A7rII (42mp) should offer more resolution than my P45 (39mp) but it simply does not.
    Maybe it is due to sensor size, maybe it is due to lenses but the acuity, sharpness, metamerism and tonal transitions are leagues apart.
    One thing you can get on tech cams you cannot on 35mm is apochromatic wide angles.
    I've become so used to seeing no CA in any situation ever since moving to a tech cam that it stands out like the proverbial dog's balls to me every time I see it in print or online. It smacks of cheapness even though the kit used could very well have cost as much as my MF tech cam kit.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 21st March 2016 at 13:25.

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    One interesting comparison between IQ-180 and Pentax 645Z with an A7rII thrown in…

    Hi,

    Here is a very interesting comparison between an IQ-180, a Pentax 645Z and an A7rII thrown in. It is an interesting read.

    I have found the Pentax 645Z quite impressive with the lens that was used, sort of contradicts all talk about Pentax having bad lenses.

    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...must-read.html

    I have checked out the raw images, but don't know if they are still there for download.

    Best regards
    Erik

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    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    This posting on Lensrentals is a bit illustrative

    Hi,

    This blog post is not about MFD but still interesting: https://www.lensrentals.com/blog/201...a-sony-a7r-ii/

    It's a blind test comparison between Leica M Monochrome and Sony A7rII with two Leica owners and a skeptic judging the images…

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    It's when I see proclamations like these "...acuity, sharpness, tonal transitions are LEAGUES APART" that I feel as though I'm missing out on something because frankly, I don't see it. Sometimes, I see subtle differences where MF is better, sometimes I don't. However, from what I see, whereas I can't say that the Emperor has no clothes, he may just be wearing a thong.

  42. #192
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    Re: One interesting comparison between IQ-180 and Pentax 645Z with an A7rII thrown in

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    Here is a very interesting comparison between an IQ-180, a Pentax 645Z and an A7rII thrown in. It is an interesting read.

    I have found the Pentax 645Z quite impressive with the lens that was used, sort of contradicts all talk about Pentax having bad lenses.

    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...must-read.html

    I have checked out the raw images, but don't know if they are still there for download.

    Best regards
    Erik

    The folks who say that Pentax lenses are 'bad' are just either snobs or are very annoyed at how cheap they are vs HassyPhase. Of course, that's only the legacy lenses. The new optics are top notch, priced to match, and still get a bad rep. People have always snubbed the Pentax glass which is a bit silly because many of my favorite shooters throughout history used the P67. Zeiss lenses are great, but somewhere along the lines people got it into their heads that if Zeiss lenses are so good, that must mean Pentax lenses are un-good. Very strange, considering it's completely unfounded. I'd put a 75/2.8 FA up against a 80/2.8 Planar any day, and same with a 75/2.8 AL up against a 60/3.5 Distagon. The Pentax 55/4 can do anything the 50/4 Distagon (not sure about the newer FLE) can do. The only 'meh' lens I've encountered is the 645 45/2.8. They all have their strengths and weaknesses, but Pentax is playing the game as well as anybody.
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  43. #193
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    It's when I see proclamations like these "...acuity, sharpness, tonal transitions are LEAGUES APART" that I feel as though I'm missing out on something because frankly, I don't see it. Sometimes, I see subtle differences where MF is better, sometimes I don't.
    As a MF user, I would agree that "leagues apart" is exaggerated. Subtle differences is more like it.

    For me it is about:
    -having a whole series of lenses matched in color and rendering (something Leica and Minolta also did on 24x36, so it is not a strict MF exclusive)
    -not having to worry about distortion, chromatism, etc...
    -color-rendering out of the box which I find pleasing (even if it is not actually accurate)
    -(usually) better bokeh
    -less shutter vibration
    -the higher resolution
    -and also camera haptics, viewfinder, etc...

  44. #194
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by alajuela View Post
    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
    Yes, the final result that we are all looking for usually is the print. But then the question is, what about the print? How big, how bright, how to mount it, where to mount it, who is going to look at it and from how far away?

    Every time I drive into The City through the Midtown tunnel, I come up against this 30ft tall billboard taken with a humble iPhone, my car as it swerves over the ramp comes almost within 50 ft of this hoarding and I swear it looks beautiful.

    OTOH, prints on the wall of a gallery or museum are typically viewed from much closer. So you need a higher resolution image than the one yielding a print of 10-12 dpi for the billboard.

    In one sense the OP is correct, cameras are simply tools for us to reach our goals. If you need high speed flash sync, then your choices are limited to a few cameras that offer it.

    This MFDB vs DSLR/Mirrorless is an endless and pointless debate. I've owned the IQ180 and now own the Pentax 645Z. For me, the Phase product did not work, I found the Pentax more useful. However, since I got the A7RII and the Batis lenses, even that is just sitting idle.

    But that's just me and my shooting style, my subjects and my own aspirations. Who am I to say what will or won't work for anybody else?

    And it's not always about the money. I could buy the new Phase kit, but I'd rather put the difference in a better car. Even that's stupid, for how does spending an extra $60K get me that much more oomph in something that is simply designed to get me from A to B? But, it's my decision. Do I need it? Heck no, but I sure as hell love it.

    And that's 2c from me. More waste of everyone's bandwidth
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Abstraction View Post
    It's when I see proclamations like these "...acuity, sharpness, tonal transitions are LEAGUES APART" that I feel as though I'm missing out on something because frankly, I don't see it. Sometimes, I see subtle differences where MF is better, sometimes I don't. However, from what I see, whereas I can't say that the Emperor has no clothes, he may just be wearing a thong.
    Seriously. If you actually have a legitimate interest in what medium format digital can do for you compared to what you now use, and not just a desire to engage in a pointless polemic that seems directed at questioning how other people spend their money, you would go rent the equipment and try it out, shooting whatever it is you like to shoot for a few days and working with the files. The only opinion that matters is your own, and nobody trying to decide whether to spend the considerable amount of money involved should be looking for answers on the internet. If you can't figure it out by doing the tests yourself, you surely don't NEED it. OTOH, if you just LIKE it, then by all means jump in, you will be in good company.
    hcubell
    www.howardcubell.com
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  46. #196
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    Re: One interesting comparison between IQ-180 and Pentax 645Z with an A7rII thrown in

    Hi,

    Keep in mind that those Distagons and Planars are film era lenses. Digital sensors are flat, for instance, film never was. MTF curves for those Hasselblad Distagons is seldom good, with the IF version of the Distagon 40 being an exception.

    Now that 24x36 mm sensors improved so much, Zeiss is making some much improved lenses like the Milvus 50/1.4 and 85/1.4, the new lenses are very different from the old "double gauss" designs, using almost twice the number of elements and exotic glass.

    Zeiss and Hasselblad have MTF-plots measured on sample lenses at 10,20 and 40 lp/mm, making comparisons of MTF data easy. That doesn't make them better but it is very useful for some comparisons. Leica, Schneider and Rodenstock also have MTF data that may be measured on sample lenses.

    Some would argue that MTF data doesn't tell the hole story about a lens and that is quite true, but it tells a lot.

    This image was shot with the Distagon 40/4 on the P45+:



    While this one was shot with a Canon 16-35/4 zoom on the A7rII:


    The crops are actual pixels near the horizontal edge. The A7rII and the P45+ have essentially the same resolution in MP 42 vs 39, even closer if the A7rII image is cropped to P45+ dimension. I am pretty sure my Pentax 67 45/4 would outperform my Distagon 40/4 on this shot.

    Canon 16-35/4 at 24 mm and f/8
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Zeiss MTF data for Distagon 40/4
    Click image for larger version. 

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    From what I have seen then new HC-lenses seem to be much improved compared to the old Zeiss lenses for the Hasselblad. Zeiss also designed the lenses for the Contax 645. Some of those lenses were significantly better than the older Hasselblad lenses.

    The image comparison between the IQ-180 and the Pentax 645Z show two things in my humble opinion:

    • A Pentax 645Z can deliver impressive image quality with the right lens
    • MF zooms can deliver very good image quality


    A technical camera with a high resolution sensor is probably as high we can set the bar for a comparison.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Speedgraphic View Post
    The folks who say that Pentax lenses are 'bad' are just either snobs or are very annoyed at how cheap they are vs HassyPhase. Of course, that's only the legacy lenses. The new optics are top notch, priced to match, and still get a bad rep. People have always snubbed the Pentax glass which is a bit silly because many of my favorite shooters throughout history used the P67. Zeiss lenses are great, but somewhere along the lines people got it into their heads that if Zeiss lenses are so good, that must mean Pentax lenses are un-good. Very strange, considering it's completely unfounded. I'd put a 75/2.8 FA up against a 80/2.8 Planar any day, and same with a 75/2.8 AL up against a 60/3.5 Distagon. The Pentax 55/4 can do anything the 50/4 Distagon (not sure about the newer FLE) can do. The only 'meh' lens I've encountered is the 645 45/2.8. They all have their strengths and weaknesses, but Pentax is playing the game as well as anybody.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 21st March 2016 at 23:07.

  47. #197
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by MrSmith View Post
    There is a P45 sat in the studio, a Hblad and a load of zeiss lenses that I could use to shoot still-life but it sits unused because a Sony/Actus/Schneider combo makes it redundant, there's no compelling reason for me to use it as the files are just not as good to work with. The lenses are a big part of that equation.
    Like you I have got used to not seeing any C/A and having sharpness right across the frame. That's something that is not exclusive to MFD especially when a lot of lenses are now essentially 'cross platform'

    What works for some people might not be a viable proposition for others (on the rare occasion I need a decent wide angle I make do with a canon TS-e)
    we sure have something in common :-) but i too shoot a lot of people and portrait work on location with mixed light settings and here MF simply sucks and is unusable when you can´t stop down and need to work under pressure what is rather normal in the corporate world.

  48. #198
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Having tried to use a 500series HB in that situation you realise what you need is a nice fast f2 medium zoom and easily accessed af zones right across the frame. It's 2016 and a £25k medium format camera can't even do the basics.
    (Sorry if that sounds like a troll-post but it's a valid point)
    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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  49. #199
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    There are some who would say that manually focussing a portrait with a medium format camera is a basic skill, 50% of my commercial work is location portraits, I have never ever had an issue with a single focus point on a modern MF camera, I have also never had a problem with mixed lighting but we all face different challenges.

    This is a commercial shot, produced to the clients brief, mixed daylight, crappy office lighting and a splash of strobe, shot on a ccd sensor S, wide open, processed to the clients wishes and eventually cropped so not exactly art but still.


  50. #200
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    Re: Is there a compelling reason to move to MF?

    Quote Originally Posted by mjr View Post
    There are some who would say that manually focussing a portrait with a medium format camera is a basic skill, 50% of my commercial work is location portraits, I have never ever had an issue with a single focus point on a modern MF camera, I have also never had a problem with mixed lighting but we all face different challenges.

    This is a commercial shot, produced to the clients brief, mixed daylight, crappy office lighting and a splash of strobe, shot on a ccd sensor S, wide open, processed to the clients wishes and eventually cropped so not exactly art but still.


    shooting with an single focus point is so awkward and feels so wrong after experiencing eye focus on a7r2. i´m too old to work with gear which AF did not much improve in the last 30 years and has a performance like a minolta 9000. when i shoot portraits i want to work with the people in front and not with the camera.

    also it seems this was not a really dimm location when you can shoot @iso 200 and the ambient is in balance too....

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