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Author Topic: Leaf Aptus 75  (Read 10378 times)
KristerH
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« on: March 29, 2006, 02:40:19 PM »
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Hello.

I am in the process of bying a Digital back.
After some testing and reading I think that the Aptus 75 is the back for me.
There is only one problem and that is my computer system.
I have always used a PC platform and whant to stay with it.
Is there a way of thetered work with PC and Aptus?
As I understand it there is still no version of Leaf capture for PC  

Krister
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ddolde
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« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2006, 06:24:57 PM »
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As I understand it you can use ACR in Photoshop but not for lossless compressed files.

For tethered I think you need the Mac.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2006, 06:26:10 PM by ddolde » Logged
dazzajl
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« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2006, 07:08:46 AM »
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Hi Krister,

You need a Mac to work tethered with a Leaf back and that's that really.

It's not as bad as you think though. I was forced to make the move from PC when I went with Leaf a few years back and like you I was less than thrilled with the idea.

Now I'm a complete convert and I hate having to use a PC for anything.

The only downside is the considerable cost of getting the hardware. You're likley to find you want a good laptop and a fast G5 tower too. The kit is just great but as a company, apple make microsoft look positivley customer focused.
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Ed Jack
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« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2006, 08:36:52 AM »
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You'll see a LC10 version for PC before the years out - I think that's what Yair said. They are working on it, but at the moment I think the Universal binary or INtelMac optimised software is their priority, which as it is Java based will convert to PC in due course. I am sorry I can't be more specific, but it will be this year... so I wouldn't do the Mac conversion too hastilly, I'd just get by with Adobe Raw converter and maybe use a really cheap (ebay) old mac for tethered, as I don't think the spec required is supposed to be that high.

The Aptus 75 has many advantages over the P45.. especially if you are NOT goin to couple it to Sinaron digital HR lenses (probably the only lens to "make hay" with the "small" pixel pitched P45 - but MR's upcoming article will calrify this). The Leaf enginners have a firmware update coming soon which will also lead to much better noise filtering at iso 800. The P45 will not even do iso 800... well actually ofcourse it will with pixel binning, but Phase One claim that they do not do this as they think it might be perceived as a Sales Gimmick - but then that is a whole nother story!

Quote
Hi Krister,

You need a Mac to work tethered with a Leaf back and that's that really.

It's not as bad as you think though. I was forced to make the move from PC when I went with Leaf a few years back and like you I was less than thrilled with the idea.

Now I'm a complete convert and I hate having to use a PC for anything.

The only downside is the considerable cost of getting the hardware. You're likley to find you want a good laptop and a fast G5 tower too. The kit is just great but as a company, apple make microsoft look positivley customer focused.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=61417\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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AndrewDyer
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« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2006, 09:01:02 AM »
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It is definitly worth using Leaf Capture rather than Photoshop Camera Raw.
It might take 10 times longer to open but the files are 10 times better.
I know it stinks a bit that it is not available for PC but it is worth using.
Andrew
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kbolin
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« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2006, 10:34:16 AM »
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If you don't think you are big on a Mac and want to stay with a PC then why not buy a Mac mini.  It's realatively cheap ($800 for the core duo) and you can connect to your Windows PC's as well.  Of course then you have the possible Universal Binary problem but that will only be short lived.

Use a KVM (Keyboard, Video, Monitor/Mouse) switch so you have both your PC and Mac connected to one keyboard, monitor, mouse and then you can get the capture you need with the current windows setup you have today.

Who knows after you do that you might just convert to a Mac permanently.    

Kelly
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mtomalty
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« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2006, 11:39:37 AM »
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Throughout the course of my DB testing process I've run hundreds of Leaf files through
ACR and,more recently,v10 from Leaf and to be honest the degree of difference is,to
my eye very slight.

In response to a series of questions I posed to Yair,from Leaf UK he went beyond the call
of duty with his answers and went out and shot a series of images that pertained specifically
to my questions and shipped me a DVD of all RAWs.

My two main concerns were 1)was the new breed of 35-39Mp sensors 'lens limited' when
the intended useage was for landscape work where 'anal' detail was required and 2) was
the Aptus 75 prone to noise issues with exposures in excess of 8 seconds [the pivot point
where I had experienced concerns with previous Valeo22 and Aptus22 tests]

Yair shot with a Mamiya 645 and samples were taken using 35mm and 80mm lenses.
Suffice to say fine detail in landscape images was stunning and exceeded expectations
Other than offering perspective/shift options i don't see where a digital HR lens would offer
improvements in fine detail resolving but I await evidence to show otherwise.

I was also supplied test images of urban evening scenes where exposures ranged from
eight to 20 seconds and can say that noise issues that have previously been a dealbreaker
for me were vastly improved.
There is still a little room for improvement,I feel,and Phase is likely still a little ahead on this
detail but one would has to be viewing onscreen at 100/200% to make the distinction.


On the topic of 'lens limited' sensors I have a brief opportunity,yesterday,to use a P45
with my Contax 645 lens lineup that ranged from 35mm to apo 350.
Overall,initial  results were painfully sharp and detailed (even the 210 which has taken some hits
lately) and again if there is room for improvement with digital HR lenses they they truly
must be spectacular.

Color cast was,for all intents and purposes, surprisingly absent even with the 35mm and 45mm
lenses and,oddly,only appeared in the few test frames with the Apo 350.

Mark
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KristerH
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« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2006, 02:01:07 PM »
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Thank you all.
That will be my fix for the tethered problem Buy a powerbook and run it from the pc.
Hopefully there will be a Leaf Capture for pc within short.

I would appreciate  your opinion on the Aptus vs Phase.
To me its all about looks.
I have tested both and the pictures on my wall tells me that the Aptus is more analog (film like)
and the phase is sharper but more digital.

What do you think?

//krister
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AndrewDyer
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« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2006, 02:12:25 PM »
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Quote
Throughout the course of my DB testing process I've run hundreds of Leaf files through
ACR and,more recently,v10 from Leaf and to be honest the degree of difference is,to
my eye very slight.

Hi Mark. Yair also let me download from his server the long exposure files you are talking about ( I presume it was the ones of the bridge over the Thames and another of a residential street?)
Anyhow, as you say the quality of the files as far as noise goes was very good.
But as a test I tried opening them in ACR (which I am much more familiar with).
I found that the file was a lot sharper and had more detail in the LeafCapture file.
I have uploaded to my website an example from part of the file (100% zoom) if you wish to view the difference in RAW rendering.
http://www.andrewdyer.com/leaftest/leaf_v_cs2.html
Regards
Andrew
« Last Edit: March 31, 2006, 02:27:26 PM by AndrewDyer » Logged

mtomalty
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« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2006, 05:36:04 PM »
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Andrew,

Certainly can't argue with the comparison you posted on you site.
The Leaf file is considerably more detailed.
It gives the impression that the ACR file was left unsharpened and the v10 file had some
sharpening applied.

Was this file from an A22 or A75 because you can clearly see considerable white and black
pixel noise in the sky area of the ACR version

MT
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lonna.tucker
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« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2006, 06:48:38 PM »
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Andrew, thanks for posting the sample, but I'm curious to see what these files look like without sharpening. Can you do this for us and post again?
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mtomalty
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« Reply #11 on: April 01, 2006, 12:28:30 AM »
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Lonna

Here's are a couple of 100% crops of one of Yairs test files from the Aptus 75 shot
with a Mamiya 645 + 80mm

Sharpening is turned off in v10 and ACR
v10 has a slider called 'Grain' which I don't understand and has possible settings
from 1-50  Setting to '1' turns the image to mush,'50' is pretty sharp.
I left it at the default setting for the Aptus 75 which is '17'
It is independant of the sharpening window but does contribute to the appearance of sharpness.

In ACR I had Noise reduction set to 10 and smoothing to 3 and of course sharpening to '0'

As you can see the v10 file is a little sharper,as was Andrews example,but it does look like
it was sharpened even though I know it wasn't

This test file is also shot at 200 iso and is essentially noiseless. Impressive

Mark
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AndrewDyer
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« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2006, 03:11:09 AM »
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Andrew, thanks for posting the sample, but I'm curious to see what these files look like without sharpening. Can you do this for us and post again?
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

[a href=\"http://www.andrewdyer.com/leaftest/leaf_v_cs2_unsharpened.html]http://www.andrewdyer.com/leaftest/leaf_v_...nsharpened.html[/url]

Here is another slightly larger crop at 100% of the images with sharpening turned off for both ACR and Leaf10. I have also put a scaled down version of each image so you can see where the crop is coming from.
The other settings for the file I have written on the jpeg.

Mark. The file is from an Aptus 22 which is what I am interested in getting.

What I seem to notice from this example is that the difference in quality and detail is less noticeable which makes me think that if using the default settings from both ACR and Leaf10 - the winner is clearly Leaf as seen in the previous post. Is it possible to tweak ACR to give as good a result ?  I am not sure but I dont think so.
Have a look for yourself.
Andrew
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Dave Carter
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« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2006, 08:03:32 AM »
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KristerH,
I am very new to digital backs so take this post with caution.  Currently I have D2X.  I also have a Windows based laptop and PC.

Two weeks ago yesterday I demo'ed an Aptus 75. with a Leaf Rep.

I asked the rep if he knew any time frame for the Windows based Capture10.  He said "no" in such a way that I do not plan on waiting.

After taking a series of pictures, we converted them to tiffs on his computer using Capture10.  Then he gave me the RAW files and the tiff's on DVD's.

My first impressions of the converted tiff's is WOW.  There is no comparision to my Nikon tiff's in CS2 - PERIOD.

But, more important for this thread is the fact that after working on the RAW files he gave me in CS2 for over a week, I have not found a workflow that gives me as good results as his tiff's.  (At least to my eyes).  And this is looking at large printed crops.

I am convinced going with Leaf software for conversion is worthwhile.  Therefore, I plan to purchase an Apple laptop for use as a monitor in the field when required, to convert RAW to tiff's and to write RAW'S and tiff's to DVD.  THen when I get home, I can continue to process on my Windows based system in CS2.  I do not think I will buy a new Mac at this time.
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lonna.tucker
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« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2006, 10:46:11 AM »
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Thank you Mark and Andrew for posting these unsharpened files!

Sharpening is a process that can make a break a photo, and everyone has their preferred methods.

I prefer a less destructive method, and halos and black edges around objects drive me up the wall. No offense to Michael, but the jpegs on his website really hurt the eyes.

Back to the samples,

I am a Mac user, but if I were only PC based I would still be looking seriously at the purchase of an Aptus back. Dave, if you are new to digital - your workflow just may need some finessing. I prefer Mark's samples processed in ACR. To me, his workflow through ACR looks less "digital", which is what I'm after. I want a back that delivers smooth transitions (with lots of detail) and a film like response. V10 may also be fine or better with user experience, but I definitely see some sharpening still going on. I am a Capture One user and a few years back, the same thing was going on in the background even when you disabled sharpening.

Does anyone have examples with foliage detail? I would also like to see how a fantastic sky with lots of contrast is handled by Aptus.

Thanks again Mark and Andrew.

Lonna Tucker
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Dave Carter
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« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2006, 03:37:07 PM »
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[attachment=389:attachment]
Quote
1. Dave, if you are new to digital - your workflow just may need some finessing.

2. Does anyone have examples with foliage detail?

Lonna Tucker
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=61505\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

1. Lonna, I am sure that you are correct on that one - I have a lot to learn.
2. I will try to attach some foliage from my demo samples.  It is about 1/16 the area of an Aptus 75 shot with nothing done in CS2.  Is this what you want?

(I tried to find some information in the Forum Help section, but didn't.  Are there suggested limits on attachment size?) Thanks.
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mtomalty
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« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2006, 10:45:50 PM »
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Lonna,

Keep in mind that although it's very intuitive I've only used the Leaf software a handfull
of times so I not be getting everything possible. I'm much more comfortable with ACR.

Yair,from Leaf,acknowledged on another thread that he checks in so maybe he can
review the comparison and offer a critique.I don't believe I'm far off the  mark but it would
be nice to be double checked by someone with authority on the product.

One major advantage that v10 has over ACR is when processing images taken with long
exposure times (longer than 5 seconds). ACR processed images have quite apparent
white and black pixels in dark areas that is not visible when processing through v10

Mark

P.S.-are any of the landscape images on your site shot with a digital back?
       A few,in particular the Monument Valley image,have a very 'epic' feel.
       I recall you mentioned that you shoot with a 5 x 10 camera so,perhaps,that
       is what is contributing to the look
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lonna.tucker
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« Reply #17 on: April 02, 2006, 11:15:34 AM »
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Dave, thanks.

This is what I'd like to see - because I'm not sure what I'm looking at when you say 1/16th.
Try a small cropped section from "actual pixel" or 100% view, and repost.

Mark,

Both Monument Valley and the majority of others are from 10" cameras. A couple of exceptions are stitched digital files: Calaveras County and Lake Tulloch. This was my first digital shoot from a few years ago, where the client insisted on digital. I bought a Fuji S2 for the job and a Kaidan pan system. The Fuji "burnt up" in its first year and I had to have the CCD replaced. Now I have a Nikon D2X, but I'm exhausted with the stitching workflow process (manual stitching with layers in Photoshop). Also, I'd like to go back to seeing one frame compositions instead of thinking: how many frames, start here, end there, add a second row for the sky, etc.

If I decide on the Aptus, I will feel liberated! (smiley face)

How about you Mark? What do you shoot with?

Lonna Tucker
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mtomalty
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« Reply #18 on: April 02, 2006, 07:10:13 PM »
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Lonna

Over the past 15 years I'v used pretty well everything from 35mm to 4x5 and 612

Moved in and out of Canon,Nikon,and Leica in 35mm and have settled on (well,as
settled as one can be in these digital daze) 2 5D's and a 1DsMkll for everything that
I wish to shoot in the 35mm format. Film is now a thing of the past for 35mm as I sold off
my remaining Leica M6 and M7 system last month.

I currently have a complete  Contax 645 system (2 bodies and all the lenses) which
I intend to use as the base for a digital back in the coming months  (at least I was until
Michael planted the seed of doubt a couple of weeks ago :>))
The Contax still gets a fair bit of film use,for the time being.

I also have a Hasselblad ArcBody,which I had earlier earmarked an almost ideal camera
for a 35-39 Mp  capture for a majority of the sort of landscape I shoot but,unfortunately,
brief testing with it on a P45 indicates the lenses might not be up to the task.With a 22Mp
back it was exceptional.

My most used outdoor camera over the last fifteen years has been an Arca Swiss 6x9fc
which I still use despite being worn out and a bit 'sloppy' with focussing accuracy with wide
lenses.
I briefly cheated on the Arca and had a Linhof 679cc but,despite being possibly the sweetest
camera with movements ever made, I just couldn't connect with it.

For 4x5 field use I have a Toyo 45A and a lineup of pretty amazing lenses that apparently
won't do the trick if used on a 35-39Mp back. Still shoot more that a hundred sheets a month

I do all my own scanning on an Imacon 848

There are a number of intermediate cameras that I'm too embarassed  to mention
in public after quickly reviewing the rundown of my 'problem' as outlined above:>))

I imagine that within the year my systems will be streamlined as complete digital capture
takes over my workflow.

1 35mm based system to handle all editorial/reportage content and
1 645 system and a complementary movement based camera (Arca Swiss FC metric) to
   handle all future stock/commercial needs and replace 645,612,and 4x5 film cameras
   and scanner.

Kinda feels like an alcoholics anonymous meeting where I've finally admitted to a problem,

Mark
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Dave Carter
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« Reply #19 on: April 02, 2006, 08:35:46 PM »
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Lonna,

The origional RAW file from the Aptus 75 back was 65,523 KB.  And had a sufffix of x.MOS.

That was converted to a tiff by capture 10 on an Apple laptop by the rep.  That file was opened in CS2 on my Windows PC and it had the following "Image Size" data:  Picture size was 6,666 pixels horz. x 4,922 pixels vert.  File size was 190.4 MB.

I then cropped the image to 1/4 of the total area.  (1/2 the length by 1/2 the height).  I then cropped that result to 1/4 of its total area again.  That means that the crop that you are looking at above is 1/16 of the total origional picture area.  The "Image Size" data: Picture size is 1667 pixels x 1226 pixels.  (1/4 the length x 1/4 the height).

Does that help?

Is a 100 % crop 10% of the origional surface area?  Do you want that?  It would be a larger piece of the origional.

Thanks,
Dave
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