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Author Topic: MR's Aptus Vs Phase musings  (Read 66567 times)
pprdigital
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« Reply #20 on: August 24, 2006, 05:51:31 PM »
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Somewhere in this thread was a mention of a $7,000 A-17.  If that is true then this should be headline news as for the first time, a truly functional medium format back is available for dslr prices.  This not only allows new users to step up to better quality, but also allows current mfdb users to add an inexpensive backup to their current systems.
http://ishotit.com/
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74347\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Just for the sake of accuracy, The Leaf Aptus 17 $7,695 deals are on refurbished product. Nothing wrong with that, all of the available Aptus 17 refurb units were sent to Israel for the process of reconditioning, and they will come with full one year warranties and be treated as new units by Leaf.

However, there is a limited supply of these - we've already placed a number of orders and I'm sure other dealers have as well. These units will sell out quickly - perhaps as soon as end of week. By the way, Leaf Valeo 17's are also available (again, limited quantities) for $5,882!

Pricing for new, in the box Aptus 17's and Valeo 17's remains $15,995 and $13,995. At least for now. So, yes - the refurb Leaf 17 pricing is a great deal. Act Now!

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
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Steve Hendrix
narikin
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« Reply #21 on: August 25, 2006, 02:44:38 PM »
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it seems Leaf users are far more vocal than Phase Owners (why?)
so just to balance things out...
very happy with my P45.
its a totally bullet proof product, has never hesitated for a moment.
Software works great too, and I hear C1 4.0 is coming out in a few weeks which should improve things even further. its an excellent combo.

the only thing we are all missing is a decent modern MF camera to put these on.
I dont care for the H series Hasselblad myself, and wish someone would step up to the plate. The backs technology is way ahead of the cameras. A $900 canon has better technology than what we are putting these $30,000 backs on...
« Last Edit: August 25, 2006, 02:45:08 PM by narikin » Logged
pss
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« Reply #22 on: August 25, 2006, 04:18:07 PM »
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could not agree more...after owning both leaf and phase i have to say that the difference between all the backs is nothing compared to the difference between systems (that are still available) and the improvements being made (also goes for software) to these backs is way beyond that of the camera makers...the H1/2 is the only "new" system and i find it laughable that THIS is what mf has come to...really they are the only one left..mamiya's future is more then uncertain and rollei is (unfortunately) just a side note in the big picture (at least they still have the collectors)...and what does hasselblad do as a "marketleader"? they charge 2000 for a film back...in times when canon can come up with a camera like the new rebel xti for 799, no wonder the whole mf industry is dying...
maybe that is the problem, there are no systems to compare, so we try to find the little differences between the only gear that is actually advancing the backs...even if these differences really come down to simple personal preferences anyway...
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James Russell
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« Reply #23 on: August 26, 2006, 12:11:20 AM »
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could not agree more...after owning both leaf and phase i have to say that the difference between all the backs is nothing compared to the difference between systems (that are still available) and the improvements being made (also goes for software) to these backs is way beyond that of the camera makers...the H1/2 is the only "new" system and i find it laughable that THIS is what mf has come to...really they are the only one left..mamiya's future is more then uncertain and rollei is (unfortunately) just a side note in the big picture (at least they still have the collectors)...and what does hasselblad do as a "marketleader"? they charge 2000 for a film back...in times when canon can come up with a camera like the new rebel xti for 799, no wonder the whole mf industry is dying...
maybe that is the problem, there are no systems to compare, so we try to find the little differences between the only gear that is actually advancing the backs...even if these differences really come down to simple personal preferences anyway...
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]



Actually, right now today is probably the golden age of medium format cameras.

As stated only the H-1, Rollei and Mamiya are still in production, but v series blads, contax's, RZ's, Fujis, Bronicas are still viable and nearly all the DB manufactuer's make mounts and some kind of digital connection to the cameras and/or llenses.  

Some like the Contax integrate easily as they were developed for digital in mind, others require a cable, but they are all still as viable today as they were with film and can be bought at 1/2 to  1/10th the original price.

With my Contax system I have 7 lenses from three manufactuers, which include tilt shift, F 2.0's, wide angles, auto and manual focus and including the lenses, extra bodies, finders, grips etc. am under 9 grand in total cost.  New I would be way over double that and for all of these cameras there are enough supply through places like KEH for probably another 3 years.

[a href=\"http://ishotit.com/superrotator/index.htm]http://ishotit.com/superrotator/index.htm[/url]

In the case of my Contax the prices are slowly creeping back up and it digital integrates better than most of the three cameras that are still in production.

I get questioned as to why I would invest in an obsolete system, but for the price it is almost gauranteed that I won't lose near the money in depreciation as I do on the dslrs that drop to 1/2 price every 12 to 18 months.

As far as useability, I don't really think any medium format camera can be enginnered to operate as fast and easy as a dslr, but I see that as a plus rather than a negative.

with the dslr's it seems i work almost to fast, too off the cuff and with medium format I seem to slow down just enough to get more useful and thoughtful images.

There are rumors of new medium format cameras coming out and being announced soon, but even if they are delayed by a few years, we still have virtutally all the camera options for digital that we did with film, short of the range finders and the Pentax 6x7.

There must be some validity to all of this as medium format back sales are at record numbers and new product is still being designed.  Leaf's Aptus 65's and 75's are back ordered, so I guess there is a strong market.

I thought at one time, with the origianl 1ds that I would never move to medium format, but after the 1ds2 and my diffiucltly with that camera and the files, I went bakc to medium format and realized how much I was missing.

Not just in image quality or even aspect ration, but in the total package of camera, framing, lens selection/look and working one system for everything.

Plus the added benfit of a 16 bit file, larger file sizes for crop and just the feel of using a camera and back that was only designed for professional use.

It is just something that has to be experienced to really understand.

JR
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opgr
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« Reply #24 on: August 26, 2006, 01:17:52 AM »
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As far as useability, I don't really think any medium format camera can be enginnered to operate as fast and easy as a dslr, but I see that as a plus rather than a negative.

Currently or in the future? And if so, why not?
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Oscar Rysdyk
theimagingfactory
James Russell
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« Reply #25 on: August 26, 2006, 10:18:23 AM »
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Currently or in the future? And if so, why not?
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


I'm not an engineer but it seems the mirror is as much an issue as anything.  The H-1 has a huge mirror and ground glass but introduces a lot of slap and movement.  Consequently the Contax has a smaller mirror and glass but has less movement and probably if development had been continued could have been improved.

Still how fast do you want to shoot?  Everybody works differently and has different patterns.

My experience came from film and mostly medium format film, 645, 6x7, where you always left room for cropping.  When I shot 35mm I shot tighter and I guess that's burned into my head.

Still when I shoot 35mm (regardless of carries, film or digital) I have always shot tighter.

[a href=\"http://www.russellrutherfordgroup.com/k/]http://www.russellrutherfordgroup.com/k/[/url]

Consequently when I shot 645 I shoot looser, probably from those old film mindsets of with 2 x 1/4 there is room to crop, which still holds over from digital today.

http://www.russellrutherfordgroup.com/beth...ges/%A9RR32.jpg

http://www.russellrutherfordgroup.com/beth...ges/%A9RR63.jpg

Since the 1ds and 1ds2 a lot of photographers have moved over from medium format to 35mm for a lot of reasons.  The ability to shoot without cords, speed and many of them have talked themselves into believing that a 35mm camera is the same as a 2 1/4 camera.  I felt exactly the same, but now that I have worked with medium format digital for a year for my work I see a difference.

Though I still think the main reason for this migration to 35mm is for cost more than any one reason and had Leaf or anyone  had offered a 645 back with a useable lcd and a price range of $15,000 or less, the 1ds(2) sales would have been much smaller.

The DSLR's are quite good, and I could write a book on why I think one is better than the other, but in the end you are still shooting with a format that is not that page friendly and has a smaller viewfinder and a file that is not quite as moveable as a 16 bit DB file.

Somewhere on this board somebody said Leaf owners are more vocal than other DB owners, but most of this comes from the transition many of us made from film to digital.

At first the 1ds was the first digital camera that worked as easy, if not easier than film, had a decent lcd and an affordable price point.   At the time every medium format back was 4 times the price and offered very difficult portable options.

Now all the MFDB'S have lcd's CF cards and decent speed, (some better than others) though Leaf was the first with an LCD that was really useable enough to show to a client or AD so maybe that's why there seems to be more discussion from Leaf owners.

The transition from any for these cameras to a different format of brand takes time.  My first 6 months of owning an Aptus I shot 75% Canon, 25% Leaf and now it is 98% Leaf, 2% Canon.  Most of this comes from learning the system and getting comfortable with it's use in shooting and post production.

In the end, we are not hired for our cameras we're hired for our art and in the end you must be comfortable with what you use.  For some it's a dslr for others it's medium format, though in my genre I have seen much more movement from dslr to medium format lately, which I think can be attriubted to how much better the digital backs have become.


JR
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pss
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« Reply #26 on: August 26, 2006, 11:43:18 AM »
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i shoot almost only MF and love it, i have owned fuji (680, 670, 690), mamiya (RZ, 645af), hasselblad(501,555) i have worked with the H1 and i now own a 6008af system...i am sure the contax is a great system with phantastic lenses and i find it funny that prices are going UP now that they are out of production...i would not hesitate investing in a contax system, although they are "dead"...i understand the physical limitations of a larger mirror,...but there is no excuse for all the AF systems being so poor ...i mean it should be a lot easier to get a working system into a much larger and heavier body where battery life is also less of a problem...of course you can't compete with the numbers canon/nikon is selling, but it is obvious that there is simply no R&D in MF... i don't want to bash the H1/2 again, but a camera selling for ?7000 should really have multi zone AF...every point&shoot for 200 has it...i haven't seen the sinar M cameras, which have af and new lenses, but at the prices i have seen...and how long did it take for MF cameras to get built in metering? and how much did the manufacturers charge for something so simple? and still companies are going out of business or giving up on MF...somehow all this reminds me of the american car companies...
about the limited availability of the aptus backs: all the manufacturers are pretty much making them to fill orders, not before the orders are placed, the margins are not that high and the sensors are still very expensive (plus dalsa doesn't just make 1000 chips and waits for an order)...so there is always a wait, but i am sure they are not complaining about their sales....
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tonypassera
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« Reply #27 on: August 26, 2006, 12:52:05 PM »
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Just for the sake of accuracy, The Leaf Aptus 17 $7,695 deals are on refurbished product. Nothing wrong with that, all of the available Aptus 17 refurb units were sent to Israel for the process of reconditioning, and they will come with full one year warranties and be treated as new units by Leaf.

However, there is a limited supply of these - we've already placed a number of orders and I'm sure other dealers have as well. These units will sell out quickly - perhaps as soon as end of week. By the way, Leaf Valeo 17's are also available (again, limited quantities) for $5,882!

Pricing for new, in the box Aptus 17's and Valeo 17's remains $15,995 and $13,995. At least for now. So, yes - the refurb Leaf 17 pricing is a great deal. Act Now!

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74385\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Steve,
What's the best way to find out when refurbished leaf backs are
going to become available in the future?  I'm assuming that the Aptus 17's
are already gone.  Do you know anything about how extensive their refurb
process is?
Thanks,
Tony
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pprdigital
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« Reply #28 on: August 26, 2006, 04:22:13 PM »
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Steve,
What's the best way to find out when refurbished leaf backs are
going to become available in the future?  I'm assuming that the Aptus 17's
are already gone.  Do you know anything about how extensive their refurb
process is?
Thanks,
Tony
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74561\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Tony:

The best way is to develop a relationship with a knowledgable and trusted dealer (if one has not already developed a relationship with you) who has a healthy relationship with Leaf (or whichever applicable digital back company you're interested in).

Healthy relationship meaning they sell significant amounts of the product, and demonstrate the resources, capability and commitment to selling and supporting medium/large format digital solutions. This situation lends itself to good communication with the vendor, and sometimes preferred or not so easy to get information about new products, technical troubleshooting solutions or "specials", like refurb/demo units.

Regarding Aptus 17 availability, there are actually units still available for purchase. The refurbished Valeo 17's are completed and are in the US, but some camera mounts are sold out - Hasselblad V, for one. Aptus 17's are still in Israel being re-conditioned, and are expected to arrive in the US in September, probably 1 to 2 weeks. But orders are flowing in as we speak. I wouldn't expect them to last much longer.

Unfortunately, I've never been a fly on the wall at the Israel HQ. Refurbishing or reconditioning in this situation is likely 90% testing to ensure "as-new" performance. There may be some cosmetic or superficial enhancement, depending on the condition of the unit. Yair may be able to further clarify this. The majority of these units were probably returned in pretty good condition.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
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Steve Hendrix
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« Reply #29 on: August 26, 2006, 05:21:23 PM »
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I think the Rollei 6008 is one of the most underrated systems!
It has a bundle of lenses to choose from and they are top notch,some of them are very fast,have high sync speeds and there is a tilt/shift lens.
The only problem is the issue with mounting a DB on it.
You would need a back that could rotate unless you have a back with a square sensor.

What we need is a dedicated 645 AF system from Rollei and that still accepts the full lens range!

My 2CW,
Cheers,
Willem.
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Willem Rethmeier
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pprdigital
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« Reply #30 on: August 26, 2006, 05:49:58 PM »
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What we need is a dedicated 645 AF system from Rollei and that still accepts the full lens range!

My 2CW,
Cheers,
Willem.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74579\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Willem:

Stay tuned...

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
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Steve Hendrix
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« Reply #31 on: August 26, 2006, 07:08:15 PM »
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Thanks to Paul Schefz,
I sorted out the rotating back issue!
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Willem Rethmeier
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« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2006, 07:52:37 PM »
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I agree that the Rollei is underrated but there are several problems.
1) Distribution is sparse in the USA
2) Very expensive
3) the lack of digital backs
Since i have a Rollei 6x9 I would have loved to have gotten the 6008 (adapter to use the same lenses with the 6x9) and a leaf digital back to fit both.  

I wish Hassy would make a TS lens

Quote
I think the Rollei 6008 is one of the most underrated systems!
It has a bundle of lenses to choose from and they are top notch,some of them are very fast,have high sync speeds and there is a tilt/shift lens.
The only problem is the issue with mounting a DB on it.
You would need a back that could rotate unless you have a back with a square sensor.

What we need is a dedicated 645 AF system from Rollei and that still accepts the full lens range!

My 2CW,
Cheers,
Willem.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74579\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
« Last Edit: August 26, 2006, 07:55:39 PM by MarkKay » Logged
Ron Steinberg
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« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2006, 08:04:34 PM »
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http://ishotit.com/superrotator/index.htm

JR
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74515\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

James, a bit off topic, but can you comment on the Hartblei Superrotator? I've been considering buying one of the 35mm versions for my 1Ds. I'm actually looking for something kind of "messed up", sort of a high end lens baby. I'd like to be able to shoot with selective focus. I require reasonable sharpeness for the in focus area.

Cheers,
Ron
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rethmeier
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« Reply #34 on: August 26, 2006, 08:29:41 PM »
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I agree that the Rollei is underrated but there are several problems.
1) Distribution is sparse in the USA
2) Very expensive
3) the lack of digital backs
Since i have a Rollei 6x9 I would have loved to have gotten the 6008 (adapter to use the same lenses with the 6x9) and a leaf digital back to fit both.   

I wish Hassy would make a TS lens
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74593\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Mark,
the Rollei 6008 accepts the backs from Sinar,Phase and Leaf!
What a choice+ it allows the back to rotate!
Yes the lenses are expensive,but they are in their own league!
I know what system I'm getting,
Cheers,
Willem.
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Willem Rethmeier
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narikin
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« Reply #35 on: August 26, 2006, 08:50:38 PM »
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Actually, right now today is probably the golden age of medium format cameras.

awww, come on James.

none of them really are modern designs, all have very old AF systems, exposure evalutation and processing power, plus they are designed to transport film! (remember that?)  Once you've got used to a modern dslr, its embarrasing to step back to 1980's design MF equipment. and positively humiliating to have to put your $30,000 digital back on it.

about the only point we agree on is the value - and thats only because everyone is dumping them.

As for Contax 645 (which I use too) - you cant choose shutter speeds in fraction of an F stop - its 1/60 OR 1/30 - with nothing in between. the AF is center spot only. it turns itself off after 5 secs and is slow to wake up. it eats batteries and the lenses are just ok, but not remotely up to MF digital. And this is what I have to use? I'd happily pay 2x or 3x for something decent, modern and designed in this century.
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MarkKay
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« Reply #36 on: August 26, 2006, 09:54:05 PM »
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What i should have done is order my Leaf back to fit Rollei rather than Hassy.  THere is no way to adapt a Hassy mount back to a Rollei.. Mark


Quote
Mark,
the Rollei 6008 accepts the backs from Sinar,Phase and Leaf!
What a choice+ it allows the back to rotate!
Yes the lenses are expensive,but they are in their own league!
I know what system I'm getting,
Cheers,
Willem.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74596\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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pprdigital
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« Reply #37 on: August 26, 2006, 10:33:28 PM »
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What i should have done is order my Leaf back to fit Rollei rather than Hassy.  THere is no way to adapt a Hassy mount back to a Rollei.. Mark
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74601\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Mark:

I don't know of a way that Leaf goes on Rollei, since the mount has to come in either:

*Hasselblad H
*Hasselblad V
*Contax 645
*Mamiya 645 AFD

I'm not aware of any 3rd party adapters to these mounts for Rollei. Someone correct me if I'm wrong. Phase would seem to be in the same position. To my knowledge (or lack of it), the only digital backs that go on Rollei are Sinar and Hasselblad.

Steve Hendrix
PPR Digital
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Steve Hendrix
James Russell
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« Reply #38 on: August 27, 2006, 12:18:51 AM »
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awww, come on James.

none of them really are modern designs, all have very old AF systems, exposure evalutation and processing power, plus they are designed to transport film! (remember that?)  Once you've got used to a modern dslr, its embarrasing to step back to 1980's design MF equipment. and positively humiliating to have to put your $30,000 digital back on it.

about the only point we agree on is the value - and thats only because everyone is dumping them.

As for Contax 645 (which I use too) - you cant choose shutter speeds in fraction of an F stop - its 1/60 OR 1/30 - with nothing in between. the AF is center spot only. it turns itself off after 5 secs and is slow to wake up. it eats batteries and the lenses are just ok, but not remotely up to MF digital. And this is what I have to use? I'd happily pay 2x or 3x for something decent, modern and designed in this century.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74597\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I shoot 60 gigs a day with the Contax with no issue, inside out, studio, location mixed light, flash, hmi and daylight.

The 1 stop shutter is not an issue to me, but you can always go to aperture priority and it will go between full stops, using the +1 control to move it.

The auto focus on continuous I think is very, very accurate and covers 90% of anything I would shoot vertically.

The verticle grip is the best I've used, the lenses are dead ass sharp and one stop faster than anything else available.

Still if you want something designed this decade go to the H1/2.  The grip is uncomfortable, no waist level finder, no tilt shifts, slower lenses and tons a mirror slap, plus every thing from lens to body must be updated with new firmware, or at least checked. But with the H-1/2 you will get your wish as it its 2x to 3x the price of the contax.  

Then there's Rollei but I've seen them come and go in the U.S. market more times than Madonna.

They make a big splash and then disappear.

If the rumors are correct and Rollei is going to combine with Sinar then that's twto companies that are completely invisible in the U.S.  Also anything Sinar will be 40% more in price, gauranteed.

Personally I don't care what anyoen uses, but for me the Contax is the best solution and I tried the others, actually wanted to buy an H-1, or a Rollei and couldn't get past the quirks, the cost and in the case of Rollei no clear solution for digital.



JR
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rethmeier
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« Reply #39 on: August 27, 2006, 01:14:42 AM »
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I shoot 60 gigs a day with the Contax with no issue, inside out, studio, location mixed light, flash, hmi and daylight.

The 1 stop shutter is not an issue to me, but you can always go to aperture priority and it will go between full stops, using the +1 control to move it.

The auto focus on continuous I think is very, very accurate and covers 90% of anything I would shoot vertically.

The verticle grip is the best I've used, the lenses are dead ass sharp and one stop faster than anything else available.

Still if you want something designed this decade go to the H1/2.  The grip is uncomfortable, no waist level finder, no tilt shifts, slower lenses and tons a mirror slap, plus every thing from lens to body must be updated with new firmware, or at least checked. But with the H-1/2 you will get your wish as it its 2x to 3x the price of the contax. 

Then there's Rollei but I've seen them come and go in the U.S. market more times than Madonna.

They make a big splash and then disappear.

If the rumors are correct and Rollei is going to combine with Sinar then that's twto companies that are completely invisible in the U.S.  Also anything Sinar will be 40% more in price, gauranteed.

Personally I don't care what anyoen uses, but for me the Contax is the best solution and I tried the others, actually wanted to buy an H-1, or a Rollei and couldn't get past the quirks, the cost and in the case of Rollei no clear solution for digital.
JR
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=74611\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
I agree here with James about the Contax 645 system.
It's a great system for a great price!
The only thing wrong could be the sync speed ,however that's fixable with adding on Blad lenses.
(Am I correct in this?)

However,if there's a brand new 645 MF DB system from Germany(Rollei) that does the job,why not?
As for me,who hasn't bought into MF DB yet ,I certainly would consider having a look.
It couldn't be more expensive than the H1/H2 system.
Regards,
Willem.
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Willem Rethmeier
www.willemrethmeier.com
Sydney Australia
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