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Thread: What will the S2 actually DO?

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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    What will the S2 actually DO?

    We've all argued about the price and timing of this beast but I am curious to know what it actually DOES. Leica's website is rather delphic on the question.

    For example, does it have Live view? How many AF points, how distributed and of what sort? Does it have continuous focus? What's the highest ISO? Fastest shutter speed? Longest exposure?

    I'm sure everyone but me has worked out where this info is so please someone, put me discreetly out of my misery!

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    just my guess, but I really hope Leica will proof me wrong:

    - No live view not even on a computer. Perhaps later on a computer. In 6 months or so
    - One AF Point Cross
    - No continuous focus
    - ISO 800/1600 the later probably just a unusable
    - 1/4000 and 1/500 with CS lenses
    - I really hope something around 5-10 minutes or even longer but my guess goes to: 1 minute

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?


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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Trying to get the specs now.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    The final specs are being released by Leica within about a week or so.

    What we do know is:

    No Live View on LCD- unknown at this point if supported in tethering s/w. Capture to screen time was estimated at 1 second or less, but I've yet to see the tethering s/w in action.

    One AF point - supposedly very accurate and tuned precisely with each and every lens for every aperture (to account for aperture-related focus-shift)

    Not final, but I would assume that the S2 has single and continuous focus modes. Manual is menu-selectable, but AF can always be overridden with clutchless focus ring on lens. AF can also be dedicated to the rear thumb AF button and seperated from the shutter release.

    Not final either, but hints at good 1600 ISO in full res and 3200 ISO in binning mode. We will have to wait a few days for this one.

    As was already stated, 1/4000th of a sec is the min shutter speed on the focal plane shutter and 1/500th of a sec is the min speed with central shutter (CS) lenses. Either can be selected with a switch on the upper left corner on the back of the camera.

    According to my latest info, there is no hard limit on long exposure. Similiar to the M8, you can use as long an exposure as you want in Bulb. The camera's top OLED screen counts up in seconds. At PMA in March, we tested it to 126 seconds to make sure it would go past 2 minutes. Could have gone longer, but Stephan's finger was getting tired and we were both satisfied with the result. Of course, the camera requires a 1:1 dark frame exposure, so a 2 min exposure would require a subsequent 2 min dark frame exposure for NR.

    I'm anxiously awaiting all the final specs and will provide them as soon as I get all the info.

    David
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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Thanks David - I knew I had seen somewhere some info beyond what is on the official S2 mini-site but I couldn't remember where or how 'guessy' it was.

    That's really helpful.

    I might be the only person on planet earth but I am slightly thinking of getting one... I just saw the LL link to an amazing video that show how hard it is to tell G1H video from RED and 5DII and it struck me that the kit to replace ALL my gear (P45+ on Phamiya/Cambo WRS, 5DII, K20D, M8.2, Pen) would be an S2 and a G1H with the Pen as its lens-sharing more social sister. I would be giving up comparatively little in terms of what I generally shoot, and getting far far fewer bags of stuff and things to remember when I switch systems.

    Hmmm....

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    I might be the only person on planet earth but I am slightly thinking of getting one...

    Hmmm....
    You are not the only person thinking of getting the S2. I know quite a few myself ....they just don't tend to write as such on the forums.

    David
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Oh, I might be convinced, but It will take a little while...
    -bob

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by dfarkas View Post
    You are not the only person thinking of getting the S2. I know quite a few myself ....they just don't tend to write as such on the forums.

    David
    Let's hope they actually write the check when the time comes.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    David,
    In your blog posting you mention that Leica says each lens will be calibrated with a profile of corrections and stuff that will feed to any S2 body for use in processing within the camera. Does that mean ROM chipped type of lenses? Does the body and Maestro processing then read these profiles, or whatever they will be, so that the camera will make the on the fly corrections? That sort of information is not mentioned anywhere else that I have seen, and it seems important to the discussion about S-system lenses being tied even more tightly to the S2 body. In other words, the lens may be very good to start, but may have all sorts of variances that can be corrected in software processing, but only if the software knows how to read that information. Meaning the S glass may work or not work so good on anything else folks try to adapt it to that does not use the processing algorithms for that glass. Not looking to make this a big issue, and it will be valuable to see the specs and what Leica has to say about all aspects of the new camera and system shortly.

    It will be interesting to see how many folks will write the checks when this camera comes to market.

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    I love this.

    Leica does un-spoken-of in-camera lens-specific tweaking, which as LJ mentions ties the end IQ, especially lacking any custom PP software, indirectly to the lens+stored lens profiles & camera processing HP. It makes some in-camera processing mandatory on RAWs (and raises the question of ability to turn-off, save processing power and tweak outside the camera).

    This, Leica thinks is fine/good engineering in Leica's mind, BUT when, Hassy does similar BUT advertises it as an advantage, a way to get more affordable glass out, does the tweaking (IIRC), for the most part, outside the camera at the photogs discretion and Leica does a "harumph" and points to how their glass won't need such pedestrian methods. Give me a break.

    While I think the concept is perfectly logical - after all Max IQ is always the end goal (and lenses you can actually pay for in this lifetime), the more details of the S2's modus operandi that come out, the closer Solms seems to be borrowing from the Hassy playbook (minus the custom PP software) than they would like to admit. It also certainly isn't making S2 glass any more affordable than HC/D units.
    Last edited by robmac; 10th August 2009 at 11:43.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Rob, I have a feeling that you are deliberately misunderstanding the real point: Leica does lens recognition, and focus tuning. Hasselblad deliberately designs lenses which contain certain optical flaws which are known to be easy to correct in software, such as distortion, to keep size and cost down.

    There is a huge difference here. Hard to miss, really. Unless one tries to, of course.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Carsten,
    To be fair, it is unclear exactly what Leica is or is not correcting for, hence the questions I have asked. The post by David suggests things like focus tuning, as you mention, but there is little other information to support or refute anything else at this point. So we do not know that the Leica lenses are or are not designed with with various in-camera post-shot corrections in mind. The suggestion from Leica is that they are optically superior and do not need any corrections, yet they also say that they are calibrating each lens for corrections....at least in focus tuning and aperture, from what was posted.

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Carsten - Not deliberately at all.

    Hassy DOESN'T design flaws in (Canon, I'm not so sure.. ;>), what they do is not go the the Nth degree to design 'perfect glass' when the differences can be tweaked in firmware/software. Logical.

    Same as Leica is doing (again logical). Does perfect glass, by definition, included lenses with focus shift? For 5K Euros, I would bloody well hope not. Given this is the first we've heard of these in-camera S2 lens-specific tweaks, I suspect there is also more going along the same vein than Leica would like to admit. Again, I see NOTHING WRONG AT ALL with what Solms is doing technically. Makes perfect sense.

    They, LIKE HASSY, are correcting for a less than perfect lens-specific performance under certain conditions (aperture, focus distance, etc) by doing it in-camera corrections. Correcting for shift in firmware is NO different than correcting for vignetting, or any other less than perfect short-coming of a lens.

    However since you're already reading the lens ROM for aperture, distance, etc to correct for shift, what about CA, vignetting, distortion....? I have no issue with what Leica or Hassy are doing, but:
    ------------------

    1) I wish Leica would get off their high horse - they (on paper for now) like, Hassy have a strong system, but call a spade a spade. The "we don't need that" comments, in hindsight, just make them look childish and make me ask (as it will others) what else is going on when you trip the shutter that isn't talked about? How will the S2 react IF you ever get to chance to bolt dumb-old V glass to it (like that will happen)?

    2) I'd be VERY surprised if they were not correcting for more than just shift. Once you have the existing ROM data (lens, aperture selected, distance, etc) and the right-sized lookup table, correction factors and processing speed, there is a LOT you can start to play with -- and a GREAT temptation to play with it. That said, if you do it right and have the processing HP - you can work wonders.

    3) It means out-of camera comparison testing will have to ensure that you are comparing like-like.

    4) Assuming the tweaking goes beyond shift (or will later go beyond shift), what does that means for the fact that they have no tailored PP software?

    5) If they had put the childish BS aside and had advertised what they were doing ; "Our Lenses, are, after all, Leica's, (hint., hint) but the laws of physics are the laws of physics (even in Solms) and since max shooter image quality is always our end goal....", etc it would sell well. After all, no one but Leica seems to object to the Hassy (now Solms) method. That said, they now look foolish - and beg the question of if they are doing more than just correcting for shift - even if they aren't/won't. Not a way to instill potential fence-sitter confidence.

    Time to get the system in some impartial user hands - and see if the wallets open like Leica needs them to in fiscal 2010.
    Last edited by robmac; 10th August 2009 at 12:18.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Funny thing about all this perfection is that one gets bored with it very quickly, G1 and GH1's appeal to a large degree seems be the possibility to use old, imperfect glass! IMO perfection is way overrated, I'm hoping that the S2 lenses would have some of the strong Leica charm and characteristics of their older lenses that many of us love, rather than so called more perfect but sterile looking glass that we're seeing from everyone these days.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    David - good point. I also don't want my camera to be the worlds most perfect Xerox machine - regardless of who makes it.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Hassy DOESN'T design flaws in
    Well, I suppose it depends on your definitions of "flaw" and "designs in". My understanding is that they do indeed do that, for most reasonable definitions of both terms. Note that I have not said it was a bad thing, it is just that deliberately leaving in distortion and correcting it in software does match my description.

    Does perfect glass, by definition, included lenses with focus shift?
    Leica does not, like Hasselblad, speak of perfect glass. They may speak of the "best glass", and with some right. There is no such thing as perfection, of course. There are always design compromises required. Still, the pertinent difference here is that correcting distortion costs resolution in the corners, measurable in the lab, even if not visible under normal circumstances. Correcting focus shift does not.

    Correcting for shift is NO different than correcting for vignetting, or any other less than perfect short-coming of a lens.
    Well, yes, there is a difference, as explained above. If you were to shoot a complicated texture with the Hasselblad 28mm lens, for example, you would see that after correction, the corners would suffer a little. Naturally so, and in general I applaud Hasselblad for their approach, since it saves size and cost. Leica doesn't do these types of compromises, however, and reserves in-camera corrections for a lesser class of problems, focus shift and perhaps one or two others, like natural vignetting. One problem they cannot solve in this way is wallet-ache...

    The "we don't need that" comments, in hindsight, just make them look childish.
    I don't necessarily disagree on this point, but it may make marketing sense. Hasselblad's approach, while in my mind sound, did raise some eyebrows at the time, and I can see that Leica wants to drive a wedge into the crack. After all, Hasselblad is playing "budget" manufacturer in order to get the upper hand over Phase, and possibly Leica, and is thus forcing everyone's hand and making the game more deadly. In turn, Phase has made fun of Hasselblad's definition of full-frame of one year ago. It is war, and all's fair.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Carsten,

    We KNOW what Hassy does. They're open about it and we both appear to applaud it.
    We NOW KNOW Leica corrects for shift - after poo-pooing Hassy for doing lens-specific corrections.
    We DO NOT know what Leica does or does not correct for outside of shift...
    But since we NOW KNOW they correct for shift, it begs the question....and make undermines one of their own marketing thrusts.

    Correcting for ANY lens shortcoming, is correcting for a shortcoming. Shift is as much a shortcoming and anything else and can ruin an image just as much as CA, curvature, etc if not corrected for. To swear you don't need to correct for any, belittle the comp for doing it, and then have it known you correct for one (that is known of) is just not kosher, puts a marketing target on your chest -- and just begs for people to dig further. Digging you may not want.

    We DON"T KNOW how well the S2 does it because no real sample images are out there as yet.

    We'll also NEVER KNOW how much effect it has if images can't seen in before/after mode - which is unlikely. Leica lenses are overall, superb, but just how much better will the S2 units be than HCD or Phamiya equivalents if the camera firmware is a KEY but HIDDEN component in performance? If I were bellying up that much $$$, I'd like to know.

    We come at this from different mindsets. As for if one correction is the same as another or what defines a 'perfect' vs 'best' lens or and what is a 'flaws" and or what amounts to 'designed-in', etc., etc is just debating semantics and perceptions.

    Lets just say we agree on some points and disagree on others ;>

    What ONLY matters for Solms is if sufficient people vote with their wallets. Sign-up lists are nice, but as the man said, until the cheque is cashed...
    Last edited by robmac; 10th August 2009 at 12:51.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    I've talked to some Leica-people several months ago, so when I got something wrong, David needs to correct me:

    - Yes, the camera knows exactly which lens is used and every lens is factory-calibrated and measured, the generated data is written on the ROM-chip (AF, aperture, focus-shift...)

    - This data is not used for any work in the RAW-converter, not being able to read it (when adapting the S-lenses) won't be a problem, but....

    - The cover-glass of the S2 has different optical entities (thickness, integrated filtering) and these entities are taken into account by the optical design. So using them with a different cover-glass (-> other MFDB) could result in certain problems as well. The Schneider/Rodenstock-digital-lenses are also taking the cover-glass into account, but only the "traditional" type used in MFDB.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    I went looking for the famous quote about software corrections, and all I could find was this:

    "The optic calculation incorporates all the factors and requirements of digital technology, meaning that software to correct image artifacts becomes superfluous."

    Clearly, the accuracy of the statement hinges on the definition of "image artifact" here. So far, they are on track, given that focus shift is not an image artifact. Their implied criticism of the chosen Hasselblad direction is also covered, since distortion is an image artifact. Let's see if they can keep it up when the system goes into production...
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Interesting - so lens copy-specific performance 'adjustments' vs targets are flashed to the given lens's ROM for in-camera correction at time of shot. Makes sense.

    We're talking about using manual-control non-S2 glass on an S2 via adapters. The S2 glass, lacking an manual aperture control (like Contax 645) would be impractical to use on any other body.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    I think the real question being brought up is lens flaws like CA, Purple fringing, distortion, vignetting and flaws such as these and how are they truly being handled.

    There are two options here

    1 Build a lens that has absolutely no flaws. My take cost a absolute fotune to do and bigger than a house to do it.

    2. Is correct these flaws in the raw processor in camera and wrap them in a DNG to correct automatically. Basically same as Hassy and Phase but doing it before it hits the raw processing step , another words in camera like a jpeg, only corrections are applied to the raw.

    These are unanswered questions that some folks have. Not sure their is a public answer for them either.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Leica doesn't do these types of compromises, however, and reserves in-camera corrections for a lesser class of problems, focus shift and perhaps one or two others, like natural vignetting. One problem they cannot solve in this way is wallet-ache...
    Carsten,
    At the risk of getting the "dead horse" seal of approval from Bob .....this is what I have been asking about. Leica says it does not need to do any corrections. Then it says it does corrections for focus shift and aperture and ??? They do not talk about them as "compromises", and frankly neither does Hasselblad or now Phase, since they are trying to build in software corrections of their own.

    I think a valid point that Rob brings up is that we do not know what they are doing or not doing comprehensively. The place where that really starts to matter, to me at least, is if Leica is asking nearly double what Hasselblad or Phase may be asking for certain lenses that both say need software correction, and Leica's similar lens may be doing a lot of its own correction in their system that none of us know anything about. Not saying they are or are not. Just asking what they are doing or not doing. I surely would not be a happy camper to have to pay some really high price for a lens that in reality is not delivering anything more than a much less costly version by Hassy or Phase that requires some automated software correction in Phocus or C1, both of which are provided to the customer. Leica may be doing the same sort of thing in-camera, which I think a lot of folks think would be fine, but we have no way of knowing right now, and yes, there is a huge wallet-ache that is not going away. So which would you rather have....a $3-4K lens that requires you to use some provided software correction when processing, or a $5-7K lens that may be virtually equivalent in output, but does the magic in camera because there is no other dedicated software provided?

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Maybe I am naive but to me this is blindingly obvious:

    If they measure each lens for focus shift in the factory at every aperture, then have that lens tell any S2 body on which it is mounted how much it needs to tweak focus from what AF has told it, at the precise moment of stop-down for exposure, then there is nothing going on with the image file itself, at all. Consequently the there is no trade off between requirements in image processing.

    If there are compromises in the lens design such as those resulting in CA, distortion of field, vignetting, which need software correction (and I don't care whether those software corrections are pre-RAW or optional in RAW development) then there ARE tradeoffs in image quality during that processing. If you correct for vigging in software, you increase the noise in the corners because you are effectively adding exposure compensation in the corners. If you correct for sharpness falloff in corners you add noise in the corners because you add sharpening. If you correct for CA you distort colour and sharpness accuracy. If you correct field distortion you add interpolation, which is the same as upresing selectively.

    So: if the S2 only does stuff to the lens at stop-down to compensate for focus shift, then I think that's really smart and it forces fewer other compromises on the lens design. But anything that requires resampling, sharpening, selective exposure compensation, whatever, IS costing IQ because it is trying to fool the eye into getting more from the pixel data.

    If the S2 does notably less of this than Hassy et al (and as we all well know Phase does it too) then it will give a purer image and one that more accurately reflects what the lens projected onto the sensor. That's what I'd pay for because, frankly, I don't like using C1 to 'correct' lens failings such as the corner softness of the Phase 28D. The results, to my eye, look crude at larger print sizes off a P45+ and that means that I am not getting the best that can be got.

    That is where the S2's killer value proposition might well be.

    My 2 cents.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Tim, this is exactly one of the points, but we have no way to know for sure until actual specs and system are released, and then we also have no way to really test things, as S-lenses will only work on the S2. Leica saying that its optical calculations are such that there are no image artifacts, suggests, but does not prove that there are no other corrections needed. This is coming from the same folks that said that IR was....oh never mind on that last ;-)

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    Leica says it does not need to do any corrections. Then it says it does corrections for focus shift and aperture and ???
    Well, you are unsure about the exact point that I just cleared up Leica says it doesn't correct "image artifacts" in software. Now we just need to wait and see if that is really true. I guess it will be, others are skeptical. That is just the way the cookie crumbles.

    Aw man, now I want a cookie, but I have none!
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Carsten,
    Not really....Leica says, in your quote: "The optic calculation incorporates all the factors and requirements of digital technology, meaning that software to correct image artifacts becomes superfluous."

    That does not really say they do any in-camera correction or not. They simply suggest that other software to make corrections is not needed. That does not tell me whether Leica has built nearly flawless glass that hits every mark, or if they have included software correction into the camera programming and it takes its cue from the lens about what it needs to do. I guess I am just not sure of what they mean by "optic calculation".....lens design?.....or lens information handling in processing design?

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    Tim, this is exactly one of the points, but we have no way to know for sure until actual specs and system are released, and then we also have no way to really test things
    who cares? Either the images are clear and sharp edge to edge (and hold well even when uprezzing) or they are not. Maybe Leica makes the best semi medium format lenses... and than it's fine. Or they invented the best (i.e. not visible) in camera software correction... and than that's fine as well.

    I think the corrections are just focus calibration, no software correction. In current DSLRs there is micro adjustment for AF lenses. I think Leica provides that mirco adjustment ex factory, nothing else.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    Carsten,
    Not really....Leica says, in your quote: "The optic calculation incorporates all the factors and requirements of digital technology, meaning that software to correct image artifacts becomes superfluous."

    That does not really say they do any in-camera correction or not. They simply suggest that other software to make corrections is not needed.
    Strictly speaking, they don't say that they don't use software correction for image artifacts, it just says they don't need to

    But really, what it does imply is that no image artifacts, i.e. visible flaws, will be left in the image, nor will they be corrected by software. After that we can discuss if the lens is perfect, or if they use software to correct non-image-artifacts, in either case a less interesting issue.

    The interesting issue is the verbal sparring with Hasselblad. The interesting comparison will eventually be the Hasselblad 28mm versus the Leica 24mm, and the battle will be fought in the corners.

    My personal feeling is that the difference will be visible, but that the Hasselblad will be good enough, including its corrections, that very few people will care.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Thomas,
    Guess I am just trying to understand some things that do make a difference on the cost side of things. If Leica is making flawless glass for the S2, needing no corrections except focus shift or whatever, then the very high price tags on them could be justified. On the other hand, if all they are doing is building lenses similar to others, and charging a whole lot more for each lens, when the same results might be achieved with software used outside the camera, versus done in-camera, it does make a big difference. How many copies of proprietary software run outside the camera do you need, and how much would that cost? (Hasselblad and Phase already answered that question, and it is a lot less than the possible several thousand pound/euro/dollars being tacked onto each lens that Leica is offering.)

    So maybe there are some folks that do care, and the information to help them decide is not being made available. Phase and Hasselblad have been very up front about what may be needed for their lenses, such as the 28mm. Leica only says you need no extra software with their lenses on their camera. Does not tell me if the lenses are delivering flawlessly or if the camera is using software to make corrections like others are doing. The cost differential, however, is not trivial.

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Also depends what you call 'software'. Like Clinton (always liked the guy) re: M.L. and 'not having sex' - define 'sex'.

    As LJL states does the optic calc mean just from one end of lens to the other, or does it extend into the camera firmware? We were lead to believe it was the former, now we know it is the latter - at LEAST for shift. My guess, and we'll likely never know, is it extends or will extend for as yet released lenses beyond that.

    As with Hassy or Phase, if it does, so what? End IQ is all that matters. After all, regardless of Hassy, Phase or Leica, we're talking about fine-tuning or wringing the last Nth percentage of performance out of very, very, very good lenses here.

    However, what does matter is denying you do it when you do, using the supposed lack of it as a marketing tool and charging a hefty premium vs those that openly 'do it' under the guise that it's justified by the fact that you don't need to 'do it' when part of the lens proceeds are earned by the 'software' designers every time you tap the shutter.
    Last edited by robmac; 10th August 2009 at 14:58.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    But really, what it does imply is that no image artifacts, i.e. visible flaws, will be left in the image, nor will they be corrected by software.
    Where does it say that last part in any of the published information? I must have missed that completely.

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Rob Stevens once demonstrated that there was in camera correction for vignetting with the DMR (for the 19mm if I remember correctly) by shooting the same scene (his light table) with the ROM contacts masked and unmasked.

    But as Thomas states, who cares - it is all nice if there is no degradation to the image file.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by cmb_ View Post
    Rob Stevens once demonstrated that there was in camera correction for vignetting with the DMR (for the 19mm if I remember correctly) by shooting the same scene (his light table) with the ROM contacts masked and unmasked.

    But as Thomas states, who cares - it is all nice if there is no degradation to the image file.
    O.K., but then how does that address the issues Tim raised about noise, extrapolation, etc., as real issues that occur when the image file is subjected to alteration to correct those things? In other words, is there "no degradation" to the image file or not?

    Hey, an inquiring mind wants to know .....as it does impact the cost argument

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    Where does it say that last part in any of the published information? I must have missed that completely.
    We are still talking about the same quote: "superfluous" means just that, in this context.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    If Leica is making flawless glass for the S2, needing no corrections except focus shift or whatever, then the very high price tags on them could be justified. On the other hand, if all they are doing is building lenses similar to others, and charging a whole lot more for each lens, when the same results might be achieved with software used outside the camera, versus done in-camera, it does make a big difference.
    That's a valid standpoint. But I think it's hard to tell which particular shortcoming of a lens interfers with another. At these prices the lenses still can have some minor deficiencies... otherwise they would cost far more.
    But still... if the IQ is brilliant by any account and with all lenses at all apertures than it's still unique as no other system offers that - either way how they do it.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    And the M8 uses lens coding - but part of the DMR sales argument wasn't that no corrections were needed. They just did it, and if they forget to mention it, so what? Given the DMR example leads further credence to the fact that it goes beyond shift correction.

    As was said earlier, who cares? All that matters is end IQ, right? So why is Solms using the 'holier than thou' approach for part of their S2 marketing-speak when all that matters is end IQ? Because it creates an impression in the minds of potential buyers.

    The lenses, on average MAY be better, uncorrected than their equivalent competitors (you're certainly paying for them to be), but we'll never know how much was glass and how much was glass+ 'software'.

    That said, when the time comes it will be H3DII-39 (or I guess 50 ;>) vs. Phase vs. S2 prints, processed thru Phocus, C1 and LR respectively that will determine if the premium is justified or not. Should be an interesting Fall/Winter.
    Last edited by robmac; 10th August 2009 at 15:12.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    That's a valid standpoint. But I think it's hard to tell which particular shortcoming of a lens interfers with another. At these prices the lenses still can have some minor deficiencies... otherwise they would cost far more.
    But still... if the IQ is brilliant by any account and with all lenses at all apertures than it's still unique as no other system offers that - either way how they do it.
    Agreed. We have yet to see this brilliant IQ on all lenses at all apertures from anything in the S-system, as nothing is out there yet (aside from what folks may have seen in demos of one lens, or the small JPEGs displayed by fashion shooter on the Leica site).

    LJ

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Bottom line guys is how do you correct for distortion since this is one area that normally no lens on the planet can fully give 0 percent distortion with a super wide. I can and Hassy folks can correct for it outside the camera . How is leica able to correct for this outside the camera when they have no dedicated software to handle it or is there lens built with zero distortion. Same with CA their 24 lux at 6k has it until you use a program like C1 to correct for it. See where I am going here. If they say superfluous than that tells me one of two things it's already being done in the raw or I will leave the second to your imagination. Now I fully will say this could be a secret and we may never know and companies do have their secrets and that is fine . But if like LJ said I am going to put out 6k for a piece of glass than what truly makes that different than others and what am I buying for 6k.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    As Leica claims so self-assured the very best IQ the comparision should include a 39MP back on a view camera with Rodenstock HRs and Schneider Digitars.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Strictly speaking, they don't say that they don't use software correction for image artifacts, it just says they don't need to

    But really, what it does imply is that no image artifacts, i.e. visible flaws, will be left in the image, nor will they be corrected by software. After that we can discuss if the lens is perfect, or if they use software to correct non-image-artifacts, in either case a less interesting issue.

    The interesting issue is the verbal sparring with Hasselblad. The interesting comparison will eventually be the Hasselblad 28mm versus the Leica 24mm, and the battle will be fought in the corners.

    My personal feeling is that the difference will be visible, but that the Hasselblad will be good enough, including its corrections, that very few people will care.

    I'm not sure. I had sent to me a file from a Hassy 28 that was supposed to show how good it was and boy, was it not. I am quite, but not extraordinarily, fussy but I do think that some people just don't look carefully. It's like all these threads where people are posting shots to show how great their 28 Cron (or whatever) does on their G1 (or Pen or...) when they just haven't looked!

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by cmb_ View Post
    Rob Stevens once demonstrated that there was in camera correction for vignetting with the DMR (for the 19mm if I remember correctly) by shooting the same scene (his light table) with the ROM contacts masked and unmasked.

    But as Thomas states, who cares - it is all nice if there is no degradation to the image file.
    But there ALWAYS is. You may need to print large or look on a very big screen but then, if you weren't planning to do that you wouldn't buy the gear. Really.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    As Leica claims so self-assured the very best IQ the comparision should include a 39MP back on a view camera with Rodenstock HRs and Schneider Digitars.
    I will run that test when the time comes, if I do go for the S2, and I'll do it very soon after launch....

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    But there ALWAYS is. You may need to print large or look on a very big screen but then, if you weren't planning to do that you wouldn't buy the gear. Really.
    correct... if there is software correction you'll see it.
    If there is software correction it still begs the question if the (supposedly) better Leica lenses with less software corrections are still better than the (supposedly) worse lenses with some more software corrections.
    We will see...
    Frankly, even my Digitar 47XL needs (few) corrections (other than LCC)...

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    I'm not sure. I had sent to me a file from a Hassy 28 that was supposed to show how good it was and boy, was it not.
    I have seen a shot from the HCD28 which looked quite good in the corners. You could see that the resolution was not as high as in the center though, quite easily. So I wonder what the Leica 24mm can do? Time will show.
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by thomas View Post
    correct... if there is software correction you'll see it.
    If there is software correction it still begs the question if the (supposedly) better Leica lenses with less software corrections are still better than the (supposedly) worse lenses with some more software corrections.
    We will see...
    Frankly, even my Digitar 47XL needs (few) corrections (other than LCC)...
    And MAN am I bored with LCC. Careful note-taking I can do (about degrees of shift for each shot) but I will never, ever, feel like it's part of a creative process....

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    And MAN am I bored with LCC. Careful note-taking I can do (about degrees of shift for each shot) but I will never, ever, feel like it's part of a creative process....
    understandable. It's a necessary evil (currently). And of course it's not part of the creatve process. On the other hand it's something you just repeat routinely.
    I always shoot the white plate shots after I've finished the actual captures... so it doesn't really disrupt.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    Maybe I am naive but to me this is blindingly obvious:

    If they measure each lens for focus shift in the factory at every aperture, then have that lens tell any S2 body on which it is mounted how much it needs to tweak focus from what AF has told it, at the precise moment of stop-down for exposure, then there is nothing going on with the image file itself, at all. Consequently the there is no trade off between requirements in image processing.
    This is my understanding from discussions with the S2 product managers.

    Every lens, from every manufacturer, has some amount of focus shift due to manufacturing tolerances (no matter how tight). Some have wider tolerances (like Canon) and some have tighter ones. Focus shift due to aperture is not a lens imperfection, but rather a function of the physics of optics.

    N/C/S allow for Micro-AF adjustment in-camera menus on a per lens basis (but do not account for focus shift or multiple focal lengths for zooms). This is very much akin to Tom Sawyer's famous "whitewashing the fence" scam. Have the customer measure the lens and do the adjustment as an added "benefit."

    Leica is taking the time to measure, calibrate, and program each and every lens with this AF fine tuning data, as well as recording measured aperture info. The concept is that an S lens mounted on any S2 body will communicate its focus calibration info to the camera, making AF more accurate at all apertures and distances.

    As far as I know, this is the full extent of the "lens corrections," which have more to do with mitigating manufacturing tolerance and normal aperture-based focus shift, than with fixing distortion, CA, corner softness, spherical aberation, coma, astigmatism, etc.

    Seems like a good idea to me.

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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    But there ALWAYS is. You may need to print large or look on a very big screen but then, if you weren't planning to do that you wouldn't buy the gear. Really.
    Not so sure I agree that *falloff* correction during the raw conversion stage is ALWAYS visibly destructive... It may be visibly destructive with some lenses and may not be with others, depending on magnitude.

    OTOH, *distortion* correction is always visibly destructive. Whether or not you can live with said result here is a different story...
    Jack
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    Re: What will the S2 actually DO?

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Rob, I have a feeling that you are deliberately misunderstanding the real point: Leica does lens recognition, and focus tuning. Hasselblad deliberately designs lenses which contain certain optical flaws which are known to be easy to correct in software, such as distortion, to keep size and cost down.

    There is a huge difference here. Hard to miss, really. Unless one tries to, of course.
    I am not sure if it is mentioned elsewhere...

    But focus tuning is nothing new. The H1 had aperture dependent focus corrections as did one of the high end Minolta SLRs I believe.

    On the H1 there was only two corrections (ie A and B depending on aperture and distance).

    It is a lot more finite now in the H3D.

    I am sure we can argue until the cows come home about who does what and why, but there is no such thing as a perfect lens unless used at a single aperture and distance. Everything else is a compromise to some extent.

    How you handle that compromise is the interesting part.

    We are not 'designing in flaws' as wonderfully stated earlier, but more looking at what we can do from everything to optical design to the software side of things to bring lenses to the market which perform as the customer would expect.

    Best,


    David

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