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Author Topic: This Test was completely flawed  (Read 70047 times)
piksi
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« Reply #40 on: May 31, 2006, 03:32:45 AM »
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I've done both B&W and colour printing in the chemical darkroom for about 30 years, finally closing my last darkroom in about 1998.

Digital prints on the other hand. Humm. Let's see. No film flatness problems, no buckling, no secondary optical path during the enlarging process, no focusing issues when enlarging, no Newton rings, no paralellism issues, no paper flatness issues.

Oh yes. Add to that an almost total lack of grain (noise) at all reasonable ISOs, no processing variability, no reciprocity failure, etc, etc.

Why? Image quality above all. Plus greater convenience, perfect repeatability, faster turn-around and lower cost. And finally, not having to work in the dark for hours (days) at a time breathing toxic chemical fumes. Give me a glass of Merlot in front of the computer screen any day.

Michael, I think understand Your point of view about film. Heck, I might be thinking the same way myself too in my fifties when I've been inhaling those fumes for 30 years   )

But,

As I totally agree with you in many points I also disagree in some others. I shoot and postprocess my photos for clients in my own small company, using canons DSLRs and L glass. Why? Because neither I nor my clients like noise, chromatic aberrations or blur in the final pictures. I totally understand that, it's the way commercial photography is and wants to head to: clean pictures which resemble more like looking through an open window (there is nothing in between the photographer and the scene giving its characteristics to the final photo). If I were a landscape photographer too, I wouldn't mind to get as crisp and clear enlargements as possible.

But, there is another side of photography for which you can blame me for romanticizing. I personally don't think it should be underrated or overlooked. I'm talking about artistic photography where it's even *favorable* for the camera to show some of its characteristics in the photo. I'm talking about Lomo and Holga shots, Funkycam shots (ok ok it's digital but the results are a bit Holga'ish ), pinhole can cameras, pushing film for grain, crossing film, doing ferrotypes, daguerrotypes et cetera.I think some photos need the uncertainty and randomness of analogue processing, and in some cases it's not bad at all for the camera to bring something "more" to the picture.

Sure, *no one* can claim that digital isn't progress from the film times, of course it is! But the important point is that while it removes some of the restrictions of film, it at the same time is a restricted format itself too. Digital offers calculated precision and very few surprise factors, nearly everything can be controlled, but at the same time it loses the possibilities of analogue processing. I would never do my job prints with film, it costs too much, it's too unefficent, i hate cleaning the dust with dust blower and then in photoshop, it's too slow and I have to be a lot more precise with everything to produce good results. In my last shootings I was able to conquer the market from 3 competitors with just 10D, 2Gb cf, 16-35 2.8 and my portable elinchrom flash set. I shot 400 people, processed the files quickly on my laptop and produced photos of which people said they were very pleased with. There are other numerous examples of when I've benefited from using digital.

When I started learning B&W film photography by heart 3 years ago, I had grown anxious expecting immediate and controllable results. Now after those 3 years, I've grown into a more relaxed, precise and patient person. With just a roll of ilford delta400 in Canon FTb + 50mm 1,4 in my pocket, I really had to consider more carefully what i was shooting every day. I developed the films myself and did the enlargements on Brovira RC. Getting consistent and good results was sometimes a pain in the ass, but after inhaling those fumes for some time I started appreciating the efforts photographers have gone through in the past for achieving good results.
I started reading about the first actual photographs, daguerrotypes and the latter ferrotypes, the hardness of getting a good photo and the fragility of the resulted images. All of the analogue photographing processes seemed to have very much of a japanese zen in them: Concentrate and focus and you'll be rewarded with good results, if you fail, start all over again. Especially working in the darkroom proved to be very therapeutic for me.

I did some pinhole photographs, crossings and experimented with chemistry. The results felt more "real" than doing the same in photoshop, mainly because the photos were "too clear" to start with, any film like modifying felt like photomanipulation whereas light leaks, reciprocity errors, strange chemical reactions etc were just a natural part of the physical film and paper process.

I totally understand michaels point of view, when one is trying to achieve a good representational quality for prints, all sort of physical errors (residue, particles, optical anomalies etc) are simply things to dodge while heading for the perfect enlargement. This is what I try to do myself too when having a commercial photo shoot (people, products, architecture).

But I ask you people to remember - film and digital aren't things with a boolean OR, they dont exclude each other. Now that digital has taken over part of the original field where film was used, film has even more promise in the artistic photography area. It can achieve results which are nearly impossible to do with digital (without excessive effort). Most people have said that the "mutated" or "imperfect" pictures i've taken on film have been much better than the ones taken in digital.

At the same time I call for responsibility in your behalf, michael. Your word has a strong effect on many photographers opinions. I appreciate the great articles here in LL, but I hope you don't simply "bash" film because it's inferior compared to digital. It doesn't need the bashing because digital has already won the competition. Instead, I would hope to hear some more encouraging words from photographers saying: "Hey, film and darkroom work - if nothing more - is at least a great way to learn the basics and respect the roots of photography". I've seen many children jump from joy when they see their first photographs appear on the paper in darkroom. I haven't seen same kind of joy when they sit in front of a computer watching the photos. Perhaps this is the coolness of digital versus warmth of analogue film then .

I continue to enjoy my photographic work both in the darkroom and in photoshop, experimenting new ways of casting light on surfaces to produce pictures  Peace!
« Last Edit: May 31, 2006, 03:39:34 AM by piksi » Logged
BlasR
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« Reply #41 on: May 31, 2006, 04:32:09 AM »
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So I need to buy a freezer, to keep those film?


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« Reply #42 on: May 31, 2006, 05:53:28 AM »
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Talking about resolution, feast your eyes and mind by watching this site. Maybe peace will then return to the board! http://www.gigapxl.org/
Regards to all
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« Reply #43 on: May 31, 2006, 07:10:40 AM »
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I hope you have an explosives licence for all that Nitrate film you've got. Just light the blue touch-paper....
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michael
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« Reply #44 on: May 31, 2006, 07:29:45 AM »
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Piksi,

I completely appreciate your point of view. And, though I know people read it that way, I never bash film. I still shoot it from time to time in situations where it has advantages, (few, but they're there).

But, as you point out, there is no denying that film has had its day, for all except speciality situations and unrepentant hobbiests, (among whom I sometimes count myself).

I just take umbridge when someone comes on this forum and spouts complete nonsense, such as individual dye (or silver) molecules contributing to resolution. It simply feeds the uninformed more of what they're looking for, and obscures any useful dialog which could otherwise be taking place.

Michael
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piksi
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« Reply #45 on: May 31, 2006, 07:45:03 AM »
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I completely appreciate your point of view. And, though I know people read it that way, I never bash film. I still shoot it from time to time in situations where it has advantages, (few, but they're there).

I'm very glad to hear that, because I'm afraid I was one of those who have in the past misinterpreted your words about film. Sorry

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I just take umbridge when someone comes on this forum and spouts complete nonsense, such as individual dye (or silver) molecules contributing to resolution. It simply feeds the uninformed more of what they're looking for, and obscures any useful dialog which could otherwise be taking place.

I totally agree with that, purists of any kind are often the most dangerous people, especially those that use disinformation and deny that things always have at least "two sides".
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« Reply #46 on: May 31, 2006, 10:00:37 AM »
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I reviewed the Web Article from the four Photographers regarding their experiments with different Digital Cameras / Lenses and 4x5 Inch Film Sheet.  Their undertaking had a major fatal flaw.  They didn't produce Optical Prints from the Film.  Instead, they just scanned the Film Sheet into their Computer which means that the original Resolution (86 Trillion) and Colour of the Film is lost.  Film has a Resolution of 6.9 Billion  Molecules of Dye per Square Millimetre, but this is only retained if the Picture Print is made using real Light -- not a Computer Scan.  The Attached File explains the inferiorities of Digital Photography.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=66700\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Question for ya: What do you shoot?
« Last Edit: May 31, 2006, 10:02:04 AM by QuantumRose » Logged

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« Reply #47 on: May 31, 2006, 01:27:30 PM »
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[span style=\'font-size:14pt;line-height:100%\']In signal processing, the Nyquist rate is the minimum sampling rate required to avoid aliasing when sampling a continuous signal.[/span]
(Nyquist rate at Wikipedia)

If you record one cycle or pair of lines with two pixel, you'll end up with aliasing.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=66940\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Right, that is exactly at the threshold where aliasing is still possible, while with anything more than two samples per cycle (and interpolation using data over a sufficiently large number of cycles and band-width limited data), aliasing can in theory be avoided.

This is the case where there is exactly one pixel for each dark and each light line. If you are very unlucky, the samples could each fall at the midpoints between dark and light, and so see an average of equal amounts of dark and light, so that the samples all come out at a uniform middle gray: all spatial detail lost. In signal processing jargon, the high spatial frequency of the input has been aliased to zero spatial frequency in th output. (With any other positoining of the samples, you get a dark light variation of the correct spatial frequency, but typically with lower contast that the original subject matter.)


By the way, there is no point worrying about the infinite bandwidth of square wave data, at least when low pass filters ("anti-aliasing filters") are used.
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Dennis
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« Reply #48 on: May 31, 2006, 06:05:59 PM »
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Right, that is exactly at the threshold where aliasing is still possible, while with anything more than two samples per cycle (and interpolation using data over a sufficiently large number of cycles and band-width limited data), aliasing can in theory be avoided.
Okay, thanks for the explanation.
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« Reply #49 on: June 01, 2006, 01:15:31 PM »
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Although I find this discussion interesting it is exhausting to listen to endless arguments from people entrenched in defending their positions or decisions regarding equipment or processes. Every piece of equipment or process has both positive and negative aspects. Proving that a particular thing (say digital cameras) is superior in some parameters does not mean it is the best or most proper thing to use in all circumstances.
   This subject is so large it is hard to find a place to begin. Photography is about images. Some people want to make it about equipment or technical matters but in the end it comes down to images and the use of the images. Ease of use, availability, cost and many other factors play into what is used to make images. In my work I obtain half my income using a digital camera (Nikon D70) to obtain images for a clients web site. Way cheaper and quicker than trying to do the same with film. The other half of my income is from selling landscape prints. I used to produce these prints in a darkroom, now I use an Epson 7600. Almost all my prints are from scanned medium format slide film with a few taken with the D70.
   I am very happy with the prints I obtain from the Epson 7600 and find them to be as good as or superior in many ways (though not all) to darkroom prints. It is my belief that in both the darkroom and digital process (and assuming a good image to begin with) the skill of the printmaker is a more important factor than the differences in professional level equipment used to produce the image. What I like most about digital prints is not having to do test strips but instead having exact reproductions each time.
   Michael seems to want to claim that it is proven that digital is now superior to medium format film but I would certainly question that. Both can produce very nice prints and for my purposes that is what it is about.
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« Reply #50 on: June 01, 2006, 10:39:27 PM »
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So I need to buy a freezer, to keep those film?

It gets worse -- your perfectly frozen and archived family memories need to compete with the Christmas turkey for space. I'm sorry, but burning to DVD is easier than fighting over freezer space with my wife.
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Neutral Hills Stills
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piksi
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« Reply #51 on: June 02, 2006, 03:36:11 AM »
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It gets worse -- your perfectly frozen and archived family memories need to compete with the Christmas turkey for space. I'm sorry, but burning to DVD is easier than fighting over freezer space with my wife.

I never had such problem, used but modern freezers and refrigerators are easy and cheap to obtain at least here in northern eu. one freezer with safelight in the darkroom (cost less than 200), another one for the foods. I store my films in two forms, the originals and scanned versions on dvd. for my digital images I use double backup on dvds. i don't see any problems, what could be easier?
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Digiteyesed
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« Reply #52 on: June 02, 2006, 10:45:11 PM »
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I never had such problem, used but modern freezers and refrigerators are easy and cheap to obtain at least here in northern eu. one freezer with safelight in the darkroom (cost less than 200), another one for the foods. I store my films in two forms, the originals and scanned versions on dvd. for my digital images I use double backup on dvds. i don't see any problems, what could be easier?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67156\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

It must be nice to have unlimited funds for freezers and electricity bills and the space to accomodate them all. I have three full-size freezers and they are all full of frozen food stuffs with one tiny corner given over to several hundred rolls of MF film that I buy in bulk. You wouldn't believe how hard I had to fight to displace a half dozen frozen hams that were encroaching on that space.

I'm afraid that even if I could afford more freezers or the power for them, my wife would commandeer them anyhow. Part of living in the country where you're at least an hour and a half away from decent shopping.  

My negs will have to continue to live in the old metal filing cabinets that I've been picking up at government auctions for $5 apiece, and on DVD.
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Neutral Hills Stills
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« Reply #53 on: June 03, 2006, 01:04:50 AM »
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So...uh....if I don't understand the lion's share of what is being discussed am I a poor photographer or what?

(1/2 serious question)

Oh, screw it, whered I put the rebel....
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #54 on: June 03, 2006, 06:00:11 AM »
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I'm not a moderator, but I believe this discussion thread has outlived its usefulness, which was anyhow heavily compromised from the start by the absence of the real supporting evidence - yet to be pubished in the DVD disc that Michael et Co are producing.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #55 on: June 03, 2006, 06:55:25 AM »
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Actually, I was about to start another digression about the relative merits of Kelvinator vs. Frigidair products.

Michael
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« Reply #56 on: June 03, 2006, 09:37:27 AM »
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Actually, I was about to start another digression about the relative merits of Kelvinator vs. Frigidair products.

Michael
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This would be a completely flawed comparison without including Whirlpool or Kenmore  

Paul
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« Reply #57 on: June 03, 2006, 05:21:41 PM »
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Actually, we have an LG. In this day and age if you don't include comparisons with the new entrants from the Far East you are just behind the 8-ball.  
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #58 on: June 03, 2006, 06:18:03 PM »
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And what about the European contingent?
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Ben Rubinstein
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« Reply #59 on: June 03, 2006, 06:39:20 PM »
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Given how the market is moving with Ilford hanging on by its teeth, kodak out of B&W, agfa dead, kodak closing its factories by the month and desperately trying to consolidate huge losses for the 6th year running..... As a matter of interest, what chemical B&W paper are you going to print onto in 30 years time and with what chemicals?
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