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Thread: MF direction

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    MF direction

    This was originally intended as a response to the MF look conundrum thread, but expanded beyond the scope of the thread so I'm posting a new thread instead.

    ===

    As an aspiring landscape/fine art photographer, what I get out of my Nikon is very different from what I get out of my large format cameras, simply because with the Nikon I can be sloppy, I can spray the scene, and I can experiment. Shooting 120 film in my Ebony SW23 demands a much more deliberate, careful process but still allows for some experimenting. Finally, using the 8x10" Toyo monorail requires meticulous planning and scouting, often days/months in advance. So my 8x10s often lack any spontaneity whatsoever. Obviously the results are quite different - although with the 36 MP D810 and modern glass I'm finally beginning to take FF digital seriously.

    My own experience with MFDB - specifically latest-gen Phase One backs - is considerably worse than the labor of love of shooting 8x10" slide film. I apologize if anyone chooses to be offended by the following but in my experience from a usability standpoint those systems are a complete joke. Had Nikon released a product as crippled as, say, the IQ3/60 CCD back, it would be the laughing stock of the industry for years. And looking at the raw files (raw as in straight out of dcraw w/o de-noise, not rescued by C1), an ISO 400 capture looks pretty much as bad as a Nikon D5 at THREE MILLION ISO. It could of course be argued that C1 should always be used with P1 images, but those same algorithms would clean up a D5 ISO 3M file just as well so I'm not buying that argument. Obviously I'm not impressed, and I cannot imagine getting superior creative results from a system that is essentially as much an obstacle course as a video game.

    P1: "Umm.. Here's the $50K IQ3-100MP back for you to borrow. There's no manual."
    Me: "Oh... No problem, I'll just download the PDF."
    P1: "Huh?"

    In fact, I would decline to use a P1 back even if it was free - it completely ruins my creative process, I would hate every second of the experience, and the upside in imaging results is debatable. Had I used my 8x10 at the Carmel workshop, I would have had a handful of truly amazing exposures, as opposed to dozens of crappy, noisy, bulky files. Sure, it would take a bit of time and effort in post including development and drum scanning, but there would be a real contribution to my portfolio, whereas what I got from the P1 backs (60 MP CCD and 100 MP CMOS) was frankly utter crap.

    In all honesty, I did go back to the same locations a few days later and re-shot some of the scenes on 8x10" Velvia as well as Nikon D810 and the little GM5, so at the very least the P1 experience was good scouting. The surf was amazing:


    Big surf at Big Sur. Lumia GM5, Lumia 35-100, March 2016.

    In about 2-4 years' time I expect this whole argument to pretty much be over. We'll have Sony/Nikon/Canon bodies with 60-100 MP, quite a few compatible high end APO lenses, and perhaps even (gasp!) leaf shutter lenses for FF bodies. Phase One and Hasselblad are well aware of that beyond a few specialized applications their competitive advantages are slowly slipping away. In my opinion there's nothing they can do to avoid that - as the FF cameras improve, lens makers will up their game and provide the high end lenses the market demands. This process is obviously already happening, with Zeiss approaching multiple segments from Otus to Milvus to Whateverus, Sigma and Tamron attempting to match or exceed present sensor resolutions with their latest-gen lens designs, Canon with the amazing 11-24 etc, etc. So where does MF go? While I'd love to use a good 300 MP camera, if the cost is on par with a supercar then the market just isn't there, and for everything else there will be 60-100 MP FF sensors with APO f/1.4 lenses at a fraction of current MF price levels. And maybe, just maybe, a leaf shutter lens.



    This loops back to my original comment in the "MF look conundrum' thread - it's the photographer and the lens - not the camera - that creates, that makes for the "MF look". (Anyone who thinks that a camera is anything else than a light-tight box with glass in the front, sensor in the back, should look at the Alpa camera above. )

    Many of the most accomplished creative photographers in the world (including some frequenting this forum) use MF, however they are accomplished due to their photography skills (and just as much marketing skills) rather than due to the gear they choose. If you personally notice that - all else being equal - you get better results using an MF size sensor then it's possibly because you approach MF photography differently than when using a FF DSLR - MF slows you down, makes your shooting more deliberate (and for some reason I personally cannot fathom, you actually enjoy it - just like you cannot understand why I still shoot 8x10" film, even more so slide film), whereas when you pick up a DSLR perhaps your shooting becomes less deliberate (just extrapolating from my own personality LF film vs DSLR). You like the creative results you get from MF so you accept the quirks of the system.

    Okay this was a bit off-topic to the 'MF look conundrum' thread but it's a reasoning that ties together several current and past threads here. I am fully aware that some will disagree with me - even strongly - but I think sharing my experience and my own opinion based on my experience is the right thing to do. YMMV.

    Lars
    Last edited by Lars; 13th April 2016 at 15:07.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Dogs857's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Ahoy Lars

    That is a well presented argument and something that I have been agreeing with for a while. It's all about the photographer, and what the photographer wants to use.

    It doesn't matter if pixel pitches are similar, it doesn't matter if lenses are similar, it just doesn't matter. If you don't see the benefit in using a particular piece of gear then you are better off with something else. Personally I don't see the quality differences you point out, but then I am not you. That doesn't make you wrong, or me wrong. That just makes it what it is.

    For the record I have tried the D800, and just hated that camera. Every time I pick one up it makes me sad because it just does not gel with me. The files are noisy at anything over a 10sec exposure (even less sometimes) and I never saw what all the fuss was about compared to my D3x. Then I bought a Phase back. After my first shoot I pulled the files into Capture One and thought immediately that this is what I was after. I enjoyed using the camera, I loved the output of the files and I was happy. This made my work better because I was happier with what I was using.

    I have tried the Sony wonderkids but really dislike them as well. This is more of a zen thing I will admit with that camera. It did not gel with me at all despite lots of trying. I wanted to like it, but in the end every time I picked it up it made me sad. I didn't like the way it was set out, the size, the files, the evf, etcetera, etcetera. It might have the most amazing image quality in the world but there is no point if you don't enjoy using the gear.

    As to the future of MFD well anything is possible. I am somewhat curious to see just how many pixels they can squeeze onto a 35mm sensor. Eventually they are going to run out of space, and the strain on the other parts of the system may get too much. Then again they may not, we will wait and see.

    I have been back and forth with MFD a few times now due to various reasons, and none to do with quality. I am now using a 645D and enjoying the camera.

    You can't see the benefit, I can. Neither of us are right and both of us are right. The only thing that has been getting me down is the number of posts that seem to want to prove that the Sony camera is superior. It's not, but then again neither is the Phase camera.

    For photographers the best camera is the one you enjoy using, and the one that gives you the results you want.

    Enjoy your photography Lars.
    Stop chasing gear, start chasing photos instead.

    Jeff, but my friends call me Dogs
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    Re: MF direction

    As with all these 'what makes MF so special?' threads, the answer is simple. If you don't think it's special then it isn't special. Every photographer should use what gives him/her the image he/she wants.

    While I don't agree with your reasoning (why not use C1 with P1 files if it gives great results? You don't develop slide film in Rodinal either, just because it is a classic developer? And my scans are far more bulky than any RAW file. You seem more angry at the price of MFD than anything else,) I can totally see why you would get frustrated with digital files and how far off anything presentable they are and would expect more if you are used to seeing big Velvia sheets. But there are also times when I love a good digital camera. I shot a Leica S for a while last month and was quite in awe of how natural the files look without the crispness that many digital cameras have and how it tempted me to play around.
    If I were in a position to travel more I would definetely invest in a big sensor digital camera too, because it would not be fun to develop that much film over and over again. I'd still use film for the big, planned shots, but for not much else.
    But in the end it doesn't matter. Whether someone thinks or actually does get better results from a certain camera system, if you get the shot you want you'll take that camera with you the next day again. There have always been more expensive cameras sold than used and some end up on a shelf or get sold quickly, but the people that continu working with them probably don't do it to torture themself and so do see something special in them.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Jeff -
    Well said.
    Of course can I see the obvious benefits - more pixels, available leaf shutter lenses, technical camera compatibility if you use a separate back, bragging rights for your clients. What I'm saying is that 1) those benefits are less important than some years ago as there are viable alternatives now; 2) most of those benefits are in my opinion going to become irrelevant in the next few years 3) My personal impression trying out MFDB backs left me unimpressed by the frankly amateurish quality in UX and raw image quality.

    C1 OTOH is pure magic, their imaging team is first-class - I expect Phase One to transition to a pure software company over the next decade.

    "You can't see the benefit, I can. "

    I don't think you meant it this way, but this implies that I don't "get it", that I am somehow unable to see or understand something - I would argue that I actually do. Slap a Digitar on a D800, shoot long exposures at base ISO and then you have a relevant comparison to what you do with the P1 back. If OTOH you compare $5K Schneider glass on the P1 to $500 Nikon glass on the D800 then it's a less relevant comparison (in the context of this discussion). You need high end glass to fully utilize high-MP sensors - regardless of format.
    -Lars
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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Lars View Post
    ....Anyone who thinks that a camera is anything else than a light-tight box with glass in the front, sensor in the back, should look at the Alpa camera above. ....
    Hey! You found my keychain!


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    Senior Member Dogs857's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Ahoy Lars

    No mate I did not imply anything by that sentence at all. It was a poorly worded thought.
    Stop chasing gear, start chasing photos instead.

    Jeff, but my friends call me Dogs
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by JeRuFo View Post
    ... I can totally see why you would get frustrated with digital files and how far off anything presentable they are and would expect more if you are used to seeing big Velvia sheets.
    Not at all - just specifically unimpressed with P1 files. They were so bad there was no point in even trying. My Nikon files are fine, as are my 1.8 GB drum scans. I build imaging software, have actually not been in a darkroom since late 70's.

    The "bulky" comment refers to typical beginner's bad habit - uncertainty about the result - first time with this specific gear - made me fire far more shots in the hope that at least one would catch the best light. In the end, none was technically good, nor artistically relevant.
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    Super Duper
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    Re: MF direction

    MFD sure has been a punching bag lately.

    FF 135 may get more of this and that in future, it may get a nice set of leaf-shutter lenses eventually, lens makers probably will continue stepping up their game. As they do, I'll consider it. I'm already half way there.

    For now, I have images to take, and I already own various types gear to make those images the way I want ... creatively, aesthetically and physically. The emphasis is on "NOW".

    I do not own any Phase One gear ... however, I feel labeling them "a joke", "crippled", etc., seems odd given the incredibly beautiful images so many photographers seem to produce with that equipment. I don't feel compelled to defend P1 or MFD ... the images do a fine job of that on their own.

    While I also agree that what is in front of the lens, and who is behind the camera, has a everything to do with it ... I'd also postulate that those same minds made a conscience decision to use a certain tool to accomplish their task ... so, because photography does require use of a tool, you cannot separate one decision from the others just because it is convenient to your point-of-view.

    Chose what you will ... the proof will be in the pudding ... not endless deriding opinions, points, counter-points, and images that lean heavily on technical proficiency as opposed to any real breakthrough in creative insight, or opening up new vistas of understanding or feeling regarding any given subject ... be it accomplished with a MFD camera, a FF 135 camera, APSc, a 1" sensor ... or a cell phone.

    - Marc
    Last edited by fotografz; 13th April 2016 at 19:02.

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    Senior Member JohnBrew's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Hello Lars and thank you for opening up a new venue where we can all express more open views! Several of the MF vendors have been plying me with their products for some time. Currently I shoot a D810/Otus & various Nikon lenses. I have shot a P45+ and CFV-50c with various ALPA cameras and lenses in the testing procedure of moving to MF.
    During the last 50+ years I have sampled many camera systems and lenses, but I have never even handled a Hasselblad. However, while I don't believe MF offers any advantage in resolution today, the color, tonality and sheer presence of a large MF print has convinced me that perhaps I should look a little further into the genre, so to speak. So in the next few weeks I will be trying the H system. Partially because my 810 is hors de combat at the moment. Secondly because I'm going to Italy next month to shoot in some places I've never been before (this will be my ninth trip) and I really want the absolute best image quality possible. If my Nikon cannot be repaired in time I will hopefully approve of the Hasselblad and take one instead of my Nikon.
    My first camera was a 6 x 6 and I still cannot get over the contact prints from it. I was lucky in that my first foray into photography was a trip to Big Bend Nat'l Park. Some of the best images I have ever made. I would like to repeat that experience with current MF. My production with stitched images courtesy of the 810 and Zeiss Otus are pretty incredible, but I feel they are somewhat lacking in what could be produced with careful PP and MF.
    As always, photography, as in life, is a constant experiment and I feel the need to push myself to see what I can achieve.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    Hey! You found my keychain!

    Without even trying. Imagine what I can find if I'm actually looking... Oh, wait.

    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

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    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    I do not own any Phase One gear ... however, I feel labeling them "a joke", "crippled", etc., seems odd given the incredibly beautiful images so many photographers seem to produce with that equipment.
    Marc,
    Good point - I need to be specific here. I was hoping not to have to.

    One day of the workshop I borrowed an IQ3 60MP CCD back. As pointed out earler, there is no documentation available and no instruction was given beyond "Ask questions." At some point in the afternoon I set up the camera, switched the back to preview, and it was... trashed. All black except for one green square. I powered it off and on again, tried to find a reset command or a ctrl-alt-del sequence using the buttons on the back - it kept malfunctioning. None of the CI staff or anyone else were nearby to ask. I pretty much accepted that I had somehow broken a $30K piece of gear that I just borrowed with my credit card as security - all that was on my mind from that point on was what property I would be forced to sell to pay a lawyer a retainer fee, or even how soon I could quit my job and leave the country. I am not joking here I was sh-t scared.

    A few hours later in the evening I very reluctantly approached Dave Gallagher of CI and explained what had happened. He just laughed and said "Yeah CCDs do that sometimes when overloaded with light, just power it off for a few minutes.".

    Laughing at a possible customer, well, that's a separate discussion between me and Dave - I'm sure he meant no harm, but considering the circumstances it will be a while before I forget.

    Point is, to me this user experience is a complete joke, it's a crippled product, and not providing documentation is amateurish. Heck, even the need for documentation is amateur night. Any other digital camera - SURELY including your Leica S - I can just pick up and fire away with. That's one source of the harsh words - I stand by them.

    As I mentioned in the original post, this is sharing my experience and my opinions based on those experiences.
    -Lars
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    Re: MF direction

    I understand Lars. A bad experience. Can't argue with that.

    I had a few of those myself ... not limited to MFD BTW. Oddly, after 9 different Hasselblad H CCD cameras I never had a light over-load issue like that. I did get a H2D/22 that shot DNGs that simply did not reliably work despite trying to be ahead of its' time. Hasselblad quietly replaced the camera with a new H2D/22 sans the DNG file format ... with a sheepish apology.

    I once had a Pro Nikon light up like a Christmas tree at a wedding shoot ... looked like a blinking Robby The Robot ... scared the living crap out of me since I was 1/2 way through the wedding. Never seen anything like it ... thought it was going to blow up or something.

    "MF direction" is an interesting question if we remove the rancor.

    How will MFD meet the new challenges from other formats as time and technology marches on?

    The generation of MFD users like myself that profess to see a difference in look and feel beyond pixel count may wain as new users with a different sensibility come on the scene. What would entice them to consider MFD?

    Mirror-less need not be restricted to 135 formats ... so maybe there is something there? Hasselblad just jacked up the sync speed to 1/2000 on the H6, and hinted that something else of more importance than the H6 is coming soon.

    Then again, maybe the whole thing will give way to some new tech we haven't imagined yet.

    - Marc
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    Re: MF direction

    Responding more directly to the title of the thread, I would say the direction of Mf has always been to optimize the benefits of a larger format, compared to, say 35mm. Viewfinder, "negative" size, out of the box thinking on camera layout (hassle lad and rollei), ground glass viewing, etc.
    Seems they now have to move even further as 35mm has upped the game

  14. #14
    Senior Member Jamgolf's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    I am not responding to the OP.
    My reply is for sake of others who at some point might read this looking for "truths" on MF digital backs.


    from a usability standpoint those systems are a complete joke...

    Umm.. Here's the $50K IQ3-100MP back for you to borrow. There's no manual.
    Credo 60 has one of the simplest menus of any electronic device I have owned.
    Here is the entire menu. Please be the judge: http://jawadmalik.com/img/s11/v32/o2...361621-200.mp4
    Do you think this is a "complete joke"?


    I would decline to use a P1 back even if it was free...

    I would hate every second of the experience...
    Thems fightin’ words . . . you decide if you want to believe them


    the upside in imaging results is debatable...

    I cannot imagine getting superior creative results from a system...

    While I'd love to use a good 300 MP camera,...
    So 100MP is crap but love me some 300MP - Please consume with grains of salt


    an ISO 400 capture looks pretty much as bad as a Nikon D5 at THREE MILLION ISO
    OP shoots/enjoys 8x10 slide film.
    Velvia 50 is shot at ISO 40 to properly be exposed.
    No one pushes Velvia 50 to 400 - but hey lets push IQ380, native ISO 35 to 400.
    CCD backs like light - shooting a CCD back at 400 ISO will result in disappointment.
    This statement absolutely does not apply to IQ3 100 (CMOS).


    I think sharing my experience and my own opinion based on my experience is the right thing to do...

    At some point in the afternoon I set up the camera, switched the back to preview, and it was... trashed.

    ...to me this user experience is a complete joke, it's a crippled product...
    An experience based on an afternoon with a DB that was presumed “trashed”.
    OP’s experience with the demo sounds unfortunate but is not typical.
    Just ask other owners of Leaf, Phase, Hasselblad digital backs if they have experienced similar hickups.


    what I got from the P1 backs (60 MP CCD and 100 MP CMOS) was frankly utter crap
    I quote OP and rest my case: “it's the photographer and the lens - not the camera - that creates”
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  15. #15
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Jamgolf,

    If you are not responding to my OP then why are you quoting it?

    Re truths, would you say that all experiences count - yours as well as mine?
    Or are you of the opinion that I should not share my bad experiences with MF because they differ from yours, using different gear?

    Nobody is accused of lying or misleading here. I hope.
    Although parts of your post certainly go beyond hinting at attempting to discredit me, which frankly is bit disturbing.

    ". . . you decide if you want to believe them"

    If you want to accuse me of lying or misleading then do readers a favor and say so, so that we can discuss what specifically you accuse me of lying about. I'd be happy to expand on my experience and how I came to form my opinion based on those experiences - although I think I have been pretty clear above.

    -Lars


    Quote Originally Posted by Jamgolf View Post
    I am not responding to the OP.
    My reply is for sake of others who at some point might read this looking for "truths" on MF digital backs.



    Credo 60 has one of the simplest menus of any electronic device I have owned.
    Here is the entire menu. Please be the judge: http://jawadmalik.com/img/s11/v32/o2...361621-200.mp4
    Do you think this is a "complete joke"?



    Thems fightin’ words . . . you decide if you want to believe them



    So 100MP is crap but love me some 300MP - Please consume with grains of salt



    OP shoots/enjoys 8x10 slide film.
    Velvia 50 is shot at ISO 40 to properly be exposed.
    No one pushes Velvia 50 to 400 - but hey lets push IQ380, native ISO 35 to 400.
    CCD backs like light - shooting a CCD back at 400 ISO will result in disappointment.
    This statement absolutely does not apply to IQ3 100 (CMOS).



    An experience based on an afternoon with a DB that was presumed “trashed”.
    OP’s experience with the demo sounds unfortunate but is not typical.
    Just ask other owners of Leaf, Phase, Hasselblad digital backs if they have experienced similar hickups.



    I quote OP and rest my case: “it's the photographer and the lens - not the camera - that creates”
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  16. #16
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    Re: MF direction

    Lars

    Your experiences are exactly that, your own, they become universal opinion if lots and lots of people have the same experiences and they become fact when they are indisputable. I have had a lot of negative experiences with a lot of things from cars to photographic gear to people, the difference is that I don't believe that my negative experience in any of those situations somehow entitles me to declare the thing/piece of equipment/person as pointless and crap.

    A few years back I bought a Porsche 911 Turbo, I drove it out of the showroom and felt like a giddy child, second morning it wouldn't start due to the battery being flat. It spent 3 of the next 6 months in different dealers having issues fixed, I got fed up and sold it. I could obviously go on to a Porsche forum and state that the 911 is crap, I wouldn't drive one if it was free, I hated the experience etc. and those would be the accurate description of my own personal experiences and quite possibly there will be people who agree with me, more than a few even but it wouldn't be fair to simply dismiss the whole thing because of my bad experience.

    And so to your Phase One experience, it sounds like a combination of factors gave you a crap time and that is something you feel strongly enough about to declare the whole thing as pointless, you are obviously entitled to do that but I hope you can accept that for a lot of people the experience is the opposite, and their opinions are just as valid as yours. I have 3 different systems on my desk at the moment, a Sony, Nikon and Phase One, if I could have afforded to keep it the Leica would be there too, I use them all for different things and they all excel at something or I wouldn't use them. We all want different things, it's obvious that I want different things than you do, I get them currently from the Phase but previously the Leica and to some extent the Nikon too, if anything coming out of any of those cameras is crap, I don't really have to look at the camera, I look at what I did with it.

    So, thanks for writing your experiences and opinions, it's an interesting read but does nothing to change what I use on a daily basis and what my clients pay me lots of money for, I am sure my experiences will mean as much to you as yours means to me, hopefully you can find exactly what you love using and then just make beautiful images with it. I use an IQ260, effectively the same as the 360 you used and I find when I use it in the right situation and with the correct settings then the results are beautiful, I wouldn't presume to declare it the best camera in the world though, that would be as daft as declaring it the worst!

    Have a good day.

    Mat
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  17. #17
    Senior Member Jamgolf's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    If you are not responding to my OP then why are you quoting it?
    (i) So your glaring exaggerations can be high lighted and (ii) so there is some context to my post.

    would you say that all experiences count - yours as well as mine?
    Absolutely - eveyone's experience counts.
    Most people would not consider a demo or an afternoon to be enough experience to trash something. You apparently do.
    If I download software you create and spend 15 minutes, and if it crashes on my machine, would you think I would have enough experience to start a thread to trash it, declare it “crap”, “utterly useless”, “complete joke”.
    I bet you would not like that.

    Nobody is accused of lying or misleading here.
    I am not accusing you of lying.
    I am stating the obvious - that you are grossly exaggerating.

    If you want to accuse me of lying or misleading
    No. I do not want to accuse you of lying or anything.
    But you are most certainly trying to mislead others with your exaggerations.
    IQ3 100 • Cambo 1600 • Rodenstock 23,32,50,90 • Zeiss 350SA
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  18. #18
    Senior Member DanielDuarte's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    I will toss my two cents in, take them with a grain of salt as with all opinions.

    I am purely a fine art photographer with little to no negative outlook on commercial photographers, I simply haven't found myself in a position where I would take that work.

    We all know its the user, the tool is just that... a tool. This year I entered graduate school to receive my MFA and a combination of new pressures and tight work schedule shifted me away from 8x10 LF work and into digital. I purchased and returned numerous systems since the fall and ended up buying an H5D-50C. While this is an amazing tool, I am selling it tomorrow morning.

    I wish I had listened to someone earlier, the MFD systems are for those in the commercial world... if your intention are fine art images, well you could go from a box camera shooting paper negatives to 8x10. Sharpness and MTF curves and all this crap doesn't matter.

    Open a few photo books, those people killed the photo game with crude tools and limited resources.
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  19. #19
    New Member PhiloFarmer's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    [QUOTE=J but I have never even handled a Hasselblad.

    Well...that's a mouthful of honesty.....

    You might...just might...try one sometime (and as an "old-fart," I'm speaking of the V-System....). You'll be very pleasantly impressed...and creative-driven!

    Cheers,

    Hank
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  20. #20
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Jamgolf View Post
    If I download software you create and spend 15 minutes, and if it crashes on my machine, would you think I would have enough experience to start a thread to trash it, declare it “crap”, “utterly useless”, “complete joke”.
    I bet you would not like that.
    Actually, that's par for the course for most consumer products - you only get one chance at first impression - especially in software. Not that I like it.
    But from a product management perspective that's reality - ask any product manager. Your products should be usable from day one. The automotive industry has this pretty much nailed down.

    I repeat - the experience I had with the CCD back malfunctioning to the point of being unusable the first day is simply not acceptable, not from a $50 cheapo camera nor from a $30K high end back (or a new car for that matter). Add to this the fact that this was a CI-sponsored workshop to showcase their new products, including this specific back.
    Sure, this my OPINION, but it's not based on any unreasonable expectation, is it? If so, what specifically is unreasonable about that expectation? Spell it out, please.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jamgolf View Post
    No. I do not want to accuse you of lying or anything.
    But you are most certainly trying to mislead others with your exaggerations.
    No. I am in no way trying to mislead.
    But the above is indeed an accusation in the second row despite the denial in the first row.

    -Lars
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  21. #21
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Hi,

    I am not coming from 8x10 drum scans, although I have some 6x7cm drum scans and a lot of 6x7cm CCD scans.

    My experience with the P45+ has not been a negative one. The images were mostly very good. One issue I would think of that I feel the Phase One workflow is sort of protecting to the highlights.

    • Histograms are very conservative
    • The standard film curve in C1 is very bright
    • A healthy amount of noise reduction in C1 even at base ISO


    So everything is set up avoid ETTR exposure. That increases noise. Default noise reduction takes care of that. If you check out the raw file in a straight raw converter, like DCraw you will see some noise.

    The A7rII I am using now has some of the same issues, the camera histogram is very conservative. Need to learn more about that, my older Sonys have been less conservative.

    I had some discussions with Hans Kruse, who was instructor at least for one of the Phase One workshops. He says that he had experienced something like three hangups with older Phase One system in the workshop, and felt that the system was not very reliable. But he also was quite impressed by the image quality. Still his conclusion was that he could not build a business case for the Phase One system. But, Hans doesn't print very large. Interestingly, Hans found that the Nikon system he owns has significant advantage in DR, but that doesn't really matter for his photography. With the Canons he brackets a bit more, to get ETTR and he also shots HDR.

    Something I found out discussing with Hans was that he had issues with his 24-70/2.8 LII zoom, that was off to repair. The loaner he got had also some issues. I have heard that he got the lens repaired and it was quite OK after repair. Sample variations are around us.

    I made quite a lot of nice images with the P45+, although I use LR in different versions, not C1. C1 doesn't work for me, although I see some advantages with it.

    What I have noticed that I have a lot of nice images, but they essentially don't make it to the wall. Don't know why. I would think that it may depend on using primes, with zooms giving a better choice for compositions. I am a bit point of view fixed. Select point of view and than a lens to match. Another thing may be that the MFD doesn't make it to those best spots.

    It is nice to have a gear that can make all jobs well.

    From my viewpoint it is questionable if crop frame MFD makes a lot of sense. Full frame MFD with high pixel count makes a lot of sense. Now that the latest MFD backs use Sony CMOS they should be able to play the advantage of size over 24x36mm Sony based cameras.

    Hasselblad seem to take a different approach than Phase One. We have only one Phase One dealer here in Sweden, Scandinavan Photo. They have not been very knowledgeable about Phase One when I bought my P45+, they never heard about viewfinder masks. That may have been improved.

    In Sweden we have price lists for all Hasselblad and Phase One gear, at www.goecker.se (Hasselblad) and www.scandinavianphoto.se (Phase One).

    Best regards
    Erik





    Quote Originally Posted by Lars View Post
    Not at all - just specifically unimpressed with P1 files. They were so bad there was no point in even trying. My Nikon files are fine, as are my 1.8 GB drum scans. I build imaging software, have actually not been in a darkroom since late 70's.

    The "bulky" comment refers to typical beginner's bad habit - uncertainty about the result - first time with this specific gear - made me fire far more shots in the hope that at least one would catch the best light. In the end, none was technically good, nor artistically relevant.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Jamgolf's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    No. I am in no way trying to mislead.
    But the above is indeed an accusation in the second row despite the denial in the first row.
    Very well - you may not be "trying to mislead" but you certainly are misleading even without trying.
    IQ3 100 • Cambo 1600 • Rodenstock 23,32,50,90 • Zeiss 350SA
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  23. #23
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Looking ahead... the competitive advantages that MF has or might have compared to FF 24x36 DSLRs:
    - Pixel count (diminishing advantage)
    - Dynamic range (not so much difference anymore)
    - Bit depth in processing engine (not so much anymore)
    - Quality glass (FF catching up)
    - Compatibility with technical cameras/lenses (a separate back with the sensor at the front will always be a better choice, regardless of sensor size).
    - Leaf shutters
    - Subjective image quality (separate discussion)
    - Software (C1 is truly impressive in its raw conversion code)
    (anything else?)

    Hasselblad PMs seem to have done their homework, opening up for high end video. The larger sensor size might be desirable for film makers.

    Apart from that - well, if an MF camera was a true professional camera - with this I mean truly better in all relevant aspects except cost - then MF would still have a well-articulated edge. Any other direction would be surprise me. This is the direction Hasselblad seems to pursue perhaps more than Phase One - to be a better DSLR than a DSLR. Of course not all aspects can be better, notably action photography. But for any situation where weight, frame rate and AF speed is less of a priority there is a niche to capture and/or defend. That niche will shrink over time, but it's there.
    Erik mentioned commercial photography as the specific target niche for current MF, it's hard to argue against that. Even so, as FF DSLRs improve, that niche will be harder to defend.

    -Lars
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  24. #24
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Hej Erik,

    I went back to my IQ3-60 files and indeed there is plenty of headroom on the properly exposed ones - in the range of 2-3 stops. Even at ISO 50 (I shot the 100MP CMOS back at ISO 400, the CCD at 50) once you pull up the exposure there is quite a bit of color noise in the raw files. This is what shocked me, compared to Nikon. Obviously that opened a bit of a Pandora's box here. OTOH C1 is so darn impressive in its de-noise algorithm.

    Of course you should try overexposure a bit on the Sony to see where you can maximize DR, to find where the sensor clips. A truly scientific (but more difficult) approach would check the sensor color channels separately - I think that can be accomplished using straight Dcraw but it's a lot of work. Some years ago people experimented with profiles that maximized each color channel DR separately - the image would come out heavily discolored before the correction profile was applied - but nowadays with 13-16 stops DR it's not worth the effort.

    My own software has Dcraw built-in so I'm pretty familiar with that code. The future of Dcraw is a bit uncertain a the moment - there have been no updates for almost a year on Dave Coffin's code. With new cameras arriving almost weekly, a raw converter gets old quickly if color profiles for new cameras are not added. For example IQ3-100MP files don't read well at all whereas IQ3-60MP files seem to have approximately correct colorants.

    Interesting to see Hassy prices in SEK.

    -Lars

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    I am not coming from 8x10 drum scans, although I have some 6x7cm drum scans and a lot of 6x7cm CCD scans.

    My experience with the P45+ has not been a negative one. The images were mostly very good. One issue I would think of that I feel the Phase One workflow is sort of protecting to the highlights.

    • Histograms are very conservative
    • The standard film curve in C1 is very bright
    • A healthy amount of noise reduction in C1 even at base ISO


    So everything is set up avoid ETTR exposure. That increases noise. Default noise reduction takes care of that. If you check out the raw file in a straight raw converter, like DCraw you will see some noise.

    The A7rII I am using now has some of the same issues, the camera histogram is very conservative. Need to learn more about that, my older Sonys have been less conservative.

    I had some discussions with Hans Kruse, who was instructor at least for one of the Phase One workshops. He says that he had experienced something like three hangups with older Phase One system in the workshop, and felt that the system was not very reliable. But he also was quite impressed by the image quality. Still his conclusion was that he could not build a business case for the Phase One system. But, Hans doesn't print very large. Interestingly, Hans found that the Nikon system he owns has significant advantage in DR, but that doesn't really matter for his photography. With the Canons he brackets a bit more, to get ETTR and he also shots HDR.

    Something I found out discussing with Hans was that he had issues with his 24-70/2.8 LII zoom, that was off to repair. The loaner he got had also some issues. I have heard that he got the lens repaired and it was quite OK after repair. Sample variations are around us.

    I made quite a lot of nice images with the P45+, although I use LR in different versions, not C1. C1 doesn't work for me, although I see some advantages with it.

    What I have noticed that I have a lot of nice images, but they essentially don't make it to the wall. Don't know why. I would think that it may depend on using primes, with zooms giving a better choice for compositions. I am a bit point of view fixed. Select point of view and than a lens to match. Another thing may be that the MFD doesn't make it to those best spots.

    It is nice to have a gear that can make all jobs well.

    From my viewpoint it is questionable if crop frame MFD makes a lot of sense. Full frame MFD with high pixel count makes a lot of sense. Now that the latest MFD backs use Sony CMOS they should be able to play the advantage of size over 24x36mm Sony based cameras.

    Hasselblad seem to take a different approach than Phase One. We have only one Phase One dealer here in Sweden, Scandinavan Photo. They have not been very knowledgeable about Phase One when I bought my P45+, they never heard about viewfinder masks. That may have been improved.

    In Sweden we have price lists for all Hasselblad and Phase One gear, at www.goecker.se (Hasselblad) and www.scandinavianphoto.se (Phase One).

    Best regards
    Erik
    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

  25. #25
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    Re: MF direction

    Fourth rant against MF cameras for the month of April, and we have not passed mid-month yet.
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  26. #26
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    Re: MF direction

    Its the cost, I think.
    When it hurts the pocket, you sing.
    A bit like the opera - the hero gets stabbed in the back, and instead of dying, starts singing.
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  27. #27
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Higher cost means higher expectations. No surprise there.
    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

  28. #28
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by satybhat View Post
    Its the cost, I think.
    When it hurts the pocket, you sing.
    Cameras which I do not buy do not hurt my finances.

    May I suggest we move all these post into a group thread, something like "Why I don't want to buy a MF camera" or "No fun with medium format"? People are certainly entitled to hold a negative opinion about MF, not buy a camera, prefer 24x36 to MF or even shoot billboard sized pictures with an iPhone (Apple advertisement campaign), but the forum is starting to be difficult to follow with the many rants.
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  29. #29
    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Hej Mat,
    To be clear, I did not state that the MF backs were the worst cameras at anything. It was just my experience that they completely blocked my creative process, with limited apparent technical upside seen in the process. Perhaps I could have worded my critique in a more nuanced way, but the critique is valid. Over the four days I used the P1 backs, they blocked my creative process. I mean, really blocked. I was frustrated the entire weekend. That's obviously not the right mood for creativity (well, I knew an improvisational sculptor once...)

    The point here is not an MF-bashing "rant" but rather a discussion re where the industry is headed. Where do P1 and Hassy go when their competitive advantages are gone?
    And yes, as someone pointed out, cost is part of the equation. As it should be.
    -Lars

    Quote Originally Posted by mjr View Post
    Lars

    Your experiences are exactly that, your own, they become universal opinion if lots and lots of people have the same experiences and they become fact when they are indisputable. I have had a lot of negative experiences with a lot of things from cars to photographic gear to people, the difference is that I don't believe that my negative experience in any of those situations somehow entitles me to declare the thing/piece of equipment/person as pointless and crap.

    A few years back I bought a Porsche 911 Turbo, I drove it out of the showroom and felt like a giddy child, second morning it wouldn't start due to the battery being flat. It spent 3 of the next 6 months in different dealers having issues fixed, I got fed up and sold it. I could obviously go on to a Porsche forum and state that the 911 is crap, I wouldn't drive one if it was free, I hated the experience etc. and those would be the accurate description of my own personal experiences and quite possibly there will be people who agree with me, more than a few even but it wouldn't be fair to simply dismiss the whole thing because of my bad experience.

    And so to your Phase One experience, it sounds like a combination of factors gave you a crap time and that is something you feel strongly enough about to declare the whole thing as pointless, you are obviously entitled to do that but I hope you can accept that for a lot of people the experience is the opposite, and their opinions are just as valid as yours. I have 3 different systems on my desk at the moment, a Sony, Nikon and Phase One, if I could have afforded to keep it the Leica would be there too, I use them all for different things and they all excel at something or I wouldn't use them. We all want different things, it's obvious that I want different things than you do, I get them currently from the Phase but previously the Leica and to some extent the Nikon too, if anything coming out of any of those cameras is crap, I don't really have to look at the camera, I look at what I did with it.

    So, thanks for writing your experiences and opinions, it's an interesting read but does nothing to change what I use on a daily basis and what my clients pay me lots of money for, I am sure my experiences will mean as much to you as yours means to me, hopefully you can find exactly what you love using and then just make beautiful images with it. I use an IQ260, effectively the same as the 360 you used and I find when I use it in the right situation and with the correct settings then the results are beautiful, I wouldn't presume to declare it the best camera in the world though, that would be as daft as declaring it the worst!

    Have a good day.

    Mat
    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

  30. #30
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Lars View Post

    The point here is not an MF-bashing "rant" but rather a discussion re where the industry is headed. Where do P1 and Hassy go when their competitive advantages are gone?

    -Lars
    Lars, I mean no disrespect but if your point was not to come across as a rant against MF then I feel you may have failed!

    Look, there are tools for everyone, if there is really no competitive advantage then the businesses will go bust, it's as simple as that. Whilst there are people who want to buy their kit they will stay in business. There are so many types of photography and photographer that it is impossible to generalise, what is no advantage for you can be a huge advantage for someone else and rightly so!

    I just received an email from a client who is very excited about his display stand and sent me a quick iphone snap, I hope people don't object to me sharing it..



    I shot this with the IQ260 on a Cambo, there is absolutely nothing left wanting in this file, it has printed beautifully at 6m wide and more than that, the client loves it. Could it have been taken with another camera? Of course, anything from a box brownie to a Cap Cam depending on what I wanted from the final shot and the budget, as it is, the absolute best camera for the job was the camera I had, despite having no live view, no viewfinder even, no eye focusing af, I didn't even have a manual for the back, I just set aperture and shutter speed and took the shot.

    My point is that whilst entirely valid in your limited time with the cameras on your 4 day trip, mf is capable of producing excellent work, as are pretty much all cameras if used to their strengths.


    Mat
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  31. #31
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Lars View Post
    Hej Mat,
    To be clear, I did not state that the MF backs were the worst cameras at anything. It was just my experience that they completely blocked my creative process, with limited apparent technical upside seen in the process. Perhaps I could have worded my critique in a more nuanced way, but the critique is valid. Over the four days I used the P1 backs, they blocked my creative process. I mean, really blocked. I was frustrated the entire weekend. That's obviously not the right mood for creativity (well, I knew an improvisational sculptor once...)
    My experience with Hasselblad is not as frustrating as your experience with Phase One. I found that the camera I have generally works. Generally, my process for taking landscape pictures is:
    • walk around till I find a suitable place to show the scene (sometimes I look in the viewfinder of the switched off camera to have an idea of the framing, a reason why I do not want an EVF)
    • install a tripod or monopod on that suitable place
    • chose an aperture (although I sometimes bracket the aperture)
    • press the focus button for AF (which is generally perfectly accurate)
    • press the mirror up button
    • press the shutter button
    • (repeat for other pictures)
    • then, back home, get the files into focus, which does most of the adjustments I need automatically
    • sometimes tweak contrast, colors or sharpening to taste
    • for the pictures which please me, invest a bit more time to add some effects in post process and print them really big


    Generally, I found the camera much easier to use than my 24x36, because lens defects are not a problem, lens corrections are automatic, unsharpness from shutter movements is not a problem and the colours are pleasing and natural to my eyes out of the box. And I have more pixels to print bigger.

    Still: I recognise that the camera is not perfect. It is large, the menu system is inconvenient (I could configure the camera better and save my settings, but I can't be bothered) and it sometimes locks up (rarely, by my other digital cameras never do that).

    Other people will have different experiences because we all interact with our cameras in different ways.


    The point here is not an MF-bashing "rant" but rather a discussion re where the industry is headed. Where do P1 and Hassy go when their competitive advantages are gone?
    They still have twice the resolution and they are likely to keep that advantage forever, since the sensor is twice the size. But yes, generally speaking, that industry is in crisis. Hint: all traditional camera makers are in crisis at present because the cameras in cell phones is sufficient to cover the needs of 95% of their customers. So what?
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  32. #32
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Lars View Post
    Looking ahead... the competitive advantages that MF has or might have compared to FF 24x36 DSLRs:
    - Pixel count (diminishing advantage)
    - Dynamic range (not so much difference anymore)
    - Bit depth in processing engine (not so much anymore)
    - Quality glass (FF catching up)
    - Compatibility with technical cameras/lenses (a separate back with the sensor at the front will always be a better choice, regardless of sensor size).
    - Leaf shutters
    - Subjective image quality (separate discussion)
    - Software (C1 is truly impressive in its raw conversion code)
    (anything else?)

    Hasselblad PMs seem to have done their homework, opening up for high end video. The larger sensor size might be desirable for film makers.
    -pixel count ( resolution has always been the advantage of MF and still is. When FF went to 36mp MF went to 80 mp, now FF is at mid 40s with CMOS, MF is at 100 with CMOS.)
    -Bit depth (as with MP both seem to be moving forward together, but that might indeed top out.)
    -Quality glass (The bigger the sensor, the better lensed can be, because the light passes through more glass and doesn't need to hit lenses at extreme angles as much. You mention the Otus-lenses, but they cost the same as MF glass.)
    -Subjective image quality ( Besides the subjective quality differences, there are also real advantages, like edge sharpness for wide angles and the resolution as mentioned. Plus, why would a videomaker want a bigger sensor if there is no advantage over FF?)
    And one of the reasons I like MF:
    - aspect ratio (sure you can do that in a smaller format, but somehow big manufacturers seem to shy away from it, so history does still count a bit in the digital age.)

    And then there are practical reasons, like photographers that have invested in glass want new cameras for it and will buy those. FF manufacturers tried to push people to aps-c, but most pros weren't having it, so there came a line of semi-pro FF cameras instead of the APS-c they were pushing for. People that bought 50k of MF glass will want to use that for a few more years, even if FF ever catches up.

    I don't see software as an advantage for MF, it had some catching up to do with all the new stuff for FF and it seems it is almost there. But software is there regardless of sensor size and FF relies on it heavily too, for correcting lenses.

    Plus, who cares if there is a future for MF? I don't think many people feel very strongly about using this specific sensor size. If there is a better camera in another size for them, the market will shift towards that. But there is a present and near future for MF, which means at least 5 more years of these things around and people that use it and want a forum to talk to eachother. It may never be for you and may never need to be, but it is and will be for a while for quite a few people.

  33. #33
    Senior Member dchew's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Lars,
    Thank you for starting what I think is a heartfelt thread about your experience. I can empathize with your experience even though mine has been, in summary, the opposite. My main frustration was early sync issues with the back. Thankfully both Alpa and P1 worked those out to the point where I can't remember the last time I had a problem. Your experience and resulting opinion just amplifies what I've been trying to say in other threads: Different people place value on different things. What one person finds a horrible annoyance another considers an advantage, and vice versa. That diversity of thought, opinion and value is what makes our world such a great place. Here's to everyone finding the tool that fits their vision the best, so we all can make the best images we are capable of making.

    And may all the camera makers (and dealers) take Lars' experience to heart and continue improving their products.

    Quote Originally Posted by JeRuFo View Post
    Plus, who cares if there is a future for MF? I don't think many people feel very strongly about using this specific sensor size. If there is a better camera in another size for them, the market will shift towards that. But there is a present and near future for MF, which means at least 5 more years of these things around and people that use it and want a forum to talk to eachother. It may never be for you and may never need to be, but it is and will be for a while for quite a few people.
    This is a really good point. Who really cares? And why does it seem those who worry the most are not people who shoot MF cameras? Well, at least those who ask the question the most are not current users of MF. And by the way, wasn't FF supposed to be dead 10 years ago too? MF has been dead since the release of Velvia. That film was so sharp no one ever bought a MF camera again. Anybody else remember those writings?

    Personally I am very excited about the future of photography. FF? MF? Who cares. I suspect sensors and processing power will eventually be cheap enough we will have 4x5 sensors with huge fat pixels, small tiny pixels, whatever. 6x6? No problem. Just go to Walmart and pick the one you want off the shelf.

    I am not looking forward to removing all those dust spots though!

    Dave
    Last edited by dchew; 14th April 2016 at 05:14.
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    Re: MF direction

    Man, oh man. Is this bash medium format month, or what? And from a large-format shooter at that...

    Lars, in your list of MFD advantages, you left out the most important: sensor area. The same reason, presumably, you shoot 8x10.

    And that - the size of the imaging media, which then translates into a range of other qualities - is the direction MFD is heading in. It's the direction medium format has always been heading in.

    Sorry your one-time experience with a demo unit at a workshop turned out so poorly. Perhaps give it another shot, in better circumstances?

  35. #35
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by dchew View Post
    Lars,
    Thank you for starting what I think is a heartfelt thread about your experience. I can empathize with your experience even though mine has been, in summary, the opposite. My main frustration was early sync issues with the back. Thankfully both Alpa and P1 worked those out to the point where I can't remember the last time I had a problem. Your experience and resulting opinion just amplifies what I've been trying to say in other threads: Different people place value on different things. What one person finds a horrible annoyance another considers an advantage, and vice versa. That diversity of thought, opinion and value is what makes our world such a great place. Here's to everyone finding the tool that fits their vision the best, so we all can make the best images we are capable of making.

    And may all the camera makers (and dealers) take Lars' experience to heart and continue improving their products.



    This is a really good point. Who really cares? And why does it seem those who worry the most are not people who shoot MF cameras? Well, at least those who ask the question the most are not current users of MF. And by the way, wasn't FF supposed to be dead 10 years ago too? MF has been dead since the release of Velvia. That film was so sharp no one ever bought a MF camera again. Anybody else remember those writings?

    Personally I am very excited about the future of photography. FF? MF? Who cares. I suspect sensors and processing power will eventually be cheap enough we will have 4x5 sensors with huge fat pixels, small tiny pixels, whatever. 6x6? No problem. Just go to Walmart and pick the one you want off the shelf.

    I am not looking forward to removing all those dust spots though!

    Dave
    I agree, Dave. My $0.02 - a larger MF format would create more options for how the gear is used (movements, use of some lovely older lenses, less stress on new lens designs, ultra hi res etc.). I believe this type of technology would establish a clear difference between high end pros/compulsive amateurs - who learn to take advantage of the gear - and those who are perfectly happy with the quick and convenient 135 gear. Room for both types.

    That is a rational argument, trying to convince someone in the MF world to recreate a clear difference between their products and the small formats. It is the subjective narrowing (or even closing) of that gap that starts threads like this. My heart, however is with on-demand multishot and that would do a lot for any format. If P1 had that on their new backs I would upgrade from my IQ180. I see no reason to upgrade without it. Re MS, I moved from 'Blad to Phase some years ago (for various reasons). I am very sad I cannot afford to run both brands, purely because of the 200MS. Never tried the 200, but the 50MS blew me away. Not the resolution, though that easily compared with the IQ180. Rather, there is a truth about MS images that brings one closer to film. Brings me back to the clear subjective difference argument. Until MF reestablishes that, their market will continue to be in doubt.

    Rant off.

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    Re: MF direction

    In the past, there were issues of integration in MFDB, things that would not have been acceptable in the more mass-marketed, volume-sales realm of the DSLR. These can be glitches in the electronics, the interface, understanding the menus, or even in how to "tweak" the use of the back (and camera/lens combo) to get optimal performance.

    However, such difficulties were largely in the past, with todays backs much better. I had a P20 with interface problems, and it drove me nuts. The present back (a Leaf Aptus) largely works like a charm, although there is the odd electronic glitch or hiccup, usually due to a low battery. But things happen.

    If you want bullet-proof, works every single time, etc., the cameras produced in the hundreds of thousands will trump those backs produced in the thousands.

    This isn't to say they are flawed, or lousy, nor to suggest they are perfect. I find todays backs work pretty well, mostly all the time, but things do happen. This is not uncommon in areas of "extreme quality in technology" - talk to a car person about driving an early 1950s Ferrari: try to shift gears without crunching. Can't be done. Its ridiculous, they aren't user friendly, but they are specialty products and very good for the job they do.

    Its not quite clear where things went south in the demo by the OP - it seems a combination of 1) electronics that kind of spooked the weekend, 2) bad (or no) advice about how to shoot for the best files, and 3) a loss of confidence for the next few days. That's a pretty bad series of events and would sour even the most enthusiastic. If you had any remaining interest (and it would be understandable if you did not), a way to go might be:

    - only work with fully integrated systems, that have a track record and deliver
    - get some good instruction/workshop on the system
    - recognize that this gear seems to always need a bit of "turn it off and restart" at one time or another.

    But if this isn't for you, that would make sense too.
    www.gigi-photos.com
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by cunim View Post
    I agree, Dave. My $0.02 - a larger MF format would create more options for how the gear is used (movements, use of some lovely older lenses, less stress on new lens designs, ultra hi res etc.). I believe this type of technology would establish a clear difference between high end pros/compulsive amateurs - who learn to take advantage of the gear - and those who are perfectly happy with the quick and convenient 135 gear. Room for both types.

    That is a rational argument, trying to convince someone in the MF world to recreate a clear difference between their products and the small formats. It is the subjective narrowing (or even closing) of that gap that starts threads like this. My heart, however is with on-demand multishot and that would do a lot for any format. If P1 had that on their new backs I would upgrade from my IQ180. I see no reason to upgrade without it. Re MS, I moved from 'Blad to Phase some years ago (for various reasons). I am very sad I cannot afford to run both brands, purely because of the 200MS. Never tried the 200, but the 50MS blew me away. Not the resolution, though that easily compared with the IQ180. Rather, there is a truth about MS images that brings one closer to film. Brings me back to the clear subjective difference argument. Until MF reestablishes that, their market will continue to be in doubt.

    Rant off.
    As someone new and thinking of entering MF (with my own money this time) - I have previously used the IQ280, and recently the IQ3100 on jobs only - I am very interested in this Multishot argument. Could someone clarify exactly how the Hassy MS back differs from the conventional backs? Film-like you say? I'm all ears. Are there any images you can see?
    The reason I ask is because I have been thinking of moving from my S006 to the DMF backs - not yet sure whether to go Phase or Hassy.

    Thanks

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    Re: MF direction

    Are your subjects static? as movement, any movement, will not work well with the Multishots. The Hasselblad can produce excellent files of static subject matter but not for outdoor work (wind) or water or both. Wonderful color and zero aliasing.

    The Olympus EM with multishot has the ability to use the sensor stabilization process to help alleviate movement issues, (micro 4/3) and Pentax has also stated they can do this with the multishot on their new 35mm full frame. Both of these require the sensor stabilization, similar to Sony's.

    Maybe Hasselblad has this in store for their 100MP camera in a future offering.

    Paul C

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    Re: MF direction

    I have followed the (several) rants about MF and have found them quite entertaining. I grew up with 6x9 and 6x6 film then moved to 35 mm for colour work. I've owned many different brands and formats but have tended to come back to MF for most of my work. In recent years I have been very happy with my Sony mirrorless and Phase One gear. They do what I need them to do.

    But something that seems to be missing in the MF vs FF35 debate is the pleasure one gets from using one's preferred gear. It isn't always about utility or horses for courses. For example, I drive a high-end twin turbo car which easily reaches 250 kms/hr - something I have only done once or twice. For 90% of my driving, a base Chevy or Ford would be just as effective in getting me from A to B. So why do I spend the dough on the fancy wheels? Easy - it gives me great pleasure to drive a thoroughbred even if I'm not using all its potential.

    The same applies to my MFDB gear. It's a way better camera than I am photographer and rarely do I use all its potential. But dang, I just love using it! Emotional? Yes. Impractical? Somewhat. But add in all the technical advantages that I see (others may not) and for me its worth lugging around the weight, knowing that for my work it's the best available and that one day I may actually live up to its capabilities.

    Even tools can have emotional attachments!
    Bill CB

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    Re: MF direction

    I think each of us value MDF/35FF more based on our own experience, skill, purpose and need.

    You want to a small gear?, get a A7RII

    You want the best IQ, MDF has the solution.

    The camera choice is also based on your work. As a commercial photographer, the MDF is a must. Agency know what camera we use!! They will question you when you use 35mm ( it happened a lot)
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    Re: MF direction

    Dan,
    Just a short interruption.....
    Beautiful work on your website! Love the Beauty 1 Portfolio.
    Ken


    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Santoso View Post
    I think each of us value MDF/35FF more based on our own experience, skill, purpose and need.

    You want to a small gear?, get a A7RII

    You want the best IQ, MDF has the solution.

    The camera choice is also based on your work. As a commercial photographer, the MDF is a must. Agency know what camera we use!! They will question you when you use 35mm ( it happened a lot)
    Ken
    http://www.transposure.com
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    Thumbs down Re: MF direction

    Every one have it's opinion.
    But this types of treads "MF-Look" "MF-Conundrum" "MF-Direction" "MF-Pizza" seems to have always the same leitmotif : "Over Exposing one opinion, trying to convince themselves they have choose the right direction"... In Photography ?

    Better to buy one system, then going with it to make Photos instead of words.

    Then if it's MF go ask / talk / show the result in the MF forum, if is a compact camera go and discuss the issue on the compact camera forum...

    That's my opinion.
    Domenico.
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    Re: MF direction

    "The camera choice is also based on your work. As a commercial photographer, the MDF is a must. Agency know what camera we use!! They will question you when you use 35mm ( it happened a lot)"

    Never happened to me, a 100mb tiff is more than enough for print (not printing, there is a difference!) as long as the art director likes what they see on screen it's good enough. Lenses make a huge difference, nobody want to see kit-zoom mush and chromatic abhorrations.
    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.

  44. #44
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    Re: MF direction

    I think John and Paul said it all,


    "Do what you want to do,
    go where your going too,
    Think for yourself
    cause I won't be there with you."


    The Beatles, anyone remember them guys?



    Cheers


    mal
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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post

    Its not quite clear where things went south in the demo by the OP - it seems a combination of
    1) electronics that kind of spooked the weekend,
    2) bad (or no) advice about how to shoot for the best files, and
    3) a loss of confidence for the next few days. That's a pretty bad series of events and would sour even the most enthusiastic. If you had any remaining interest (and it would be understandable if you did not), a way to go might be:

    - only work with fully integrated systems, that have a track record and deliver
    - get some good instruction/workshop on the system
    - recognize that this gear seems to always need a bit of "turn it off and restart" at one time or another.

    But if this isn't for you, that would make sense too.
    I think this probably accurately describes what really happened here.

    There were a number of other people on this forum along with myself that were at this workshop testing out various gear and shooting under limited workshop conditions. Shooting with relatively sophisticated gear, that to be honest takes some getting used to in order to be proficient with it, under conditions where it is new, you are time constrained and it seems unfortunate that you weren't able to take advantage of the many many man years of experience from both CI staff there and the organizers/other attendees. You only had to ask as in my experience that group is very very happy to help or guide you if you had challenges with the usability or results in the field.

    Personally I never get the best from shooting scenes under workshop conditions period. Maybe if the light is spectacular on that particular day but compared to shooting it alone or with perhaps just another shooting partner is the only way I can do it. Combine that with unfamiliar gear that has spooked you and I can see how you wouldn't be happy with the experience and build on top of that with not being able to get the best files from the platform and it'll all mount up.

    It is tempting when given gear to try to assume that you can just pick it up and run with it alone. I know that I've done it and subsequently found out that perhaps I should have taken advantage of some guidance about where & how certain features work, plus the optimal set up for the system. I'm not sure why you weren't able to get the pdf manuals (they are on the C1 site and come on a USB key with the XF/IQ back) but CI folks should have helped you with that.

    The IQ back lock up? I can see how that could spook you and erode confidence to the point where shooting is not enjoyable at all. Heck I've been on workshops where the bad experience of being rushed on a shoot or bundled into a steamed up minivan driven through beautiful scenery and not shooting it (my least favorite experience in Iceland - four of us quit and hired an SUV and followed after that), spoil the experience completely and you just don't enjoy shooting any more and guess what? Everything adds up so that little niggles irritate immensely, nothing goes right and the images just come back as crap.

    My $0.02 - the problem here wasn't just the gear. Your experiences are what they were but the tools work just fine in other people's hands and with their experience. I can competently shoot 4x5 film but I have no doubt that if I picked up an unfamiliar 8x10 outfit to shoot that I wouldn't have a hard time shooting and loading film, messing up film flatness issues, worrying about the size of the outfit and bellows blowing in the wind and then forgetting to stop down the shutter before removing the dark slide (a mistake I wouldn't make otherwise) etc etc. Just saying ...
    Last edited by GrahamWelland; 15th April 2016 at 04:02.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"
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    Re: MF direction

    Lars' experience at Carmel was a surprise to me as well. Probably one of the largest phase concentrations in one spot on the planet, everyone curious and helpful, tons of gear to use, fondle, years and years of experience of all sorts.
    And plenty of communal discussion; I don't recall Lars bringing up any issues, and am mystified by his report
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    Re: MF direction

    And i would offer an enthusiastic appreciation to Dave and his contributions over the many workshops i have attended. He is truly one of us and deserving of much respect and thanks
    Last edited by jlm; 15th April 2016 at 11:28.
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Caulfeild-Browne View Post
    For example, I drive a high-end twin turbo car which easily reaches 250 kms/hr - something I have only done once or twice. For 90% of my driving, a base Chevy or Ford would be just as effective in getting me from A to B. So why do I spend the dough on the fancy wheels? Easy - it gives me great pleasure to drive a thoroughbred even if I'm not using all its potential.
    Amusing example. I drive an old, tiny city car. It's not that I have no knowledge of more powerful cars, I have driven some on German motorways, but I still have my 20 years old small car. It suits my needs perfectly.

    The difference? I don't go to car forums to explain to muscle car drivers that they should get something less expensive.
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    Re: MF direction

    Quote Originally Posted by jerome_m View Post
    Amusing example. I drive an old, tiny city car. It's not that I have no knowledge of more powerful cars, I have driven some on German motorways, but I still have my 20 years old small car. It suits my needs perfectly.

    The difference? I don't go to car forums to explain to muscle car drivers that they should get something less expensive.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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

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    Re: MF direction

    Thank you. I just shoot ads now haven't shoot fashion and beauty in 2 years+

    Quote Originally Posted by Transposure View Post
    Dan,
    Just a short interruption.....
    Beautiful work on your website! Love the Beauty 1 Portfolio.
    Ken

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